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GMC boost to Sabha efforts

Guwahati; July 24: The Guwahati Municipal Corporation will ask the business establishments in the city to use Assamese language on billboards in a bid to promote the language, a boost to the ongoing movement of Asam Sahitya Sabha to use Assamese extensively.

Mayor of the corporation, Abir Patra, told the media that they would ask the concerned business establishments to use Assamese on billboards.

He said Assamese should be given preference over other languages in the state.

He said trade licenses of the business establishments might get cancelled if they refuse to obey their order.

“We will ask the business establishments to use Assamese language on the billboards refusing which their trade licences might get cancelled,” Patra said.

Most billboards in the city are written either in English or Hindi making the Asam Sahitya Sabha, the biggest literary body in the state, furious.

For the last few years, the Sabha has been spearheading a movement to make Dispur implement the Assam Official Language Act, 1960, and business establishments to use Assamese language.

The latest stand of GMC has been seen as a major boost to the efforts of the Sabha, who have decided to intensify their movement in the city from tomorrow.

“We are happy at the decision of the corporation. We appeal to other government and private agencies to follow the example of GMC,” said Paramananda Rajbongshi, vice-president of the Sabha.

He said tomorrow they would meet the director-general of Assam police and state transport commissioner to convince them to use Assamese in official documents and signboards.

The Sabha held a two-day convention in the city from May 25 where representatives of various organisations, vice chancellors of universities and representatives of the literary organisations of different indigenous communities to seek ways to implement the act.

On July 7, it launched Jagoron Jatra, an awareness movement, at central Assam’s Morigaon district.

Tomorrow’s programme is a part of this movement.

“We began the movement in Morigaon district where we met the deputy commissioner urging him to take initiatives to use Assamese in official documents and billboards. Tomorrow, we will meet different officials in the city with the same purpose. After that we will go to other districts,” said Rajbongshi.

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