Friday, March 13, 2009

Let's Internationalize Some Bangla (Bengali) Words


Layout © Jerome D'Costa

One day I returned home from work. One of my sons opened the door and said: "Welcome, Bloggeru! What's the topic of your blog today?" I immediately understood him, yet I said: "Bloggeru? What do you mean?" He replied: "You've been blogging for sometime, I want to call you Bloggeru."

"Bloggeru?" Yes, it sounded cool to me. In Bangla (Bengali), my mother language, there are words ending with -u or -oo, for example, shantaru (swimmer), dabaru (chess player), shonaru (goldsmith), and the like. So, my question is, why not bloggeru (regular blogger)?

We just observed the Ekushey February (Language Martyrs' Day) and International Mother Language Day on February 21. On this occasion, I would like to invite other bloggers, especially ones who speak Bangla (Bengali), to use this word "bloggeru" as often as possible. Utimately, may be one day, this word will find its place in the international bloggers' lingo. Why not give it a try?

The British Picked Up Local Indian Words

The British ruled India for 190 years until 1947 and, at the same time, they got influenced by the local lingua, too. They picked up words like bazaar (a market with many shops and stalls), cummerbund (waistband), curry powder (ground spices), khaddar (homespun cotton cloth), khaki (dust-coloured cloth), pundit (learned person), pyjama (loose cotton trousers), shawl (head or shoulders covering) and many more and have been using them in English langauge until now.

Let's Internationalize More Bangla Words

Let's constantly interject these Bangla words with their meanings in brackets in our English writings and bloggings: Bangla (Bengali), Bangali (an ethnic Bengalee who speaks Bangla), Bongo (Bengal), Purbo Bongo (East Bengal), Poshchim Bongo (West Bengal), Bhasha Dibosh (language day), bhasha shaheed (language martyr), Ekushey February (21st February), Shaheed Dibosh (Language Martyrs' Day), Bijoy Dibosh (Victory Day), Buddhijibi Dibosh (Intellectual Martyrs' Day), muktijuddho (war of liberation or independence), muktijuddha (freedom fighter), hartal (an all-out general strike), and lathicharge (beating with a thick lathi or wooden/cane stick, especially by the police to disperse demonstrators).

As Bangalis (Bengalees), we have the responsibility of writing the names of cities and districts of Bangladesh according to the correct Bangla pronunciations, for example, Bogura (for Bogra), Chottogram (Chittagong), Moymonshingha (Mymensingh), Sylet (Sylhet), Joshohor (Jessore) and others. Previously, we were writing Dacca for Dhaka, but, several years ago, we officially accepted the latter as the correct name for our capital city.

If we do so, the supreme sacrifice of the Bangali bhasha shaheeds (Bengalee language martyrs) of 1952 in the then East Pakistan (present Bangladesh) will be more meaningful and worthwhile.

What do you think? Share your ideas, please. Bookmark and Share