తెలుగు భాష అందరికి అర్ధం కాకపోవడం మరియు మన భాష గొప్పతనాన్ని పర రాష్ట్రీయులకు కూడా తెలియచేయడం కోసం ఈ ఆర్టికల్ ఇంగ్లీష్ లో రాయడం జరిగింది.
With early inscriptions and with great classics, Telugu occupies a very important position not only within the Dravidian family of languages but also among all the Indian languages. Music, drama and grammar and all other important tools for communication and aesthetic enjoyment offered by Telugu make the Telugu language a unique medium.
But this language was once just the asset of well educated and scholarly. Let alone illiterates, even commoners couldn’t understand the scriptures and inscriptions. Gidugu Ramamurthy, a linguist and historian, fought for the change in the situation and made language available to everyone. He strived hard his whole life for making the language easy for the commoners opposing the then established ‘Scholarly Language’ (Grandhika Bhasha). Paying our gratitude to his work, his birthday August 29th is celebrated as ‘Telugu Bhasha Dinotsavam’.
Born and brought up in Srikakulam, he struggled for survival in his early life because of his father’s death. With the help of his sister’s family, he completed his matriculation and started working as a teacher in Gajapati Maharaja School. The interesting thing is that he continued working there for 55 long years. During that time, he was surprised on the complexity of the language. Despite being a linguist and historian himself, he couldn’t understand half of the things written on the old scriptures and Sasanas. This made him start a movement to make Telugu comprehendible to everyone and not just the elite scholarly section of the society.
Ramamurthy’s basic worry is that the deep knit version of language is only understandable by the privileged. Hence the development opportunities will become thin for the rest of the society. It also becomes difficult for the information to pass through. To simplify the language, he started studying many languages to keenly comprehend the kinetics of a language. He pleaded for lucidity in the language. He worked on easing the complexity of language in textbooks which till then had a more poetic approach and less prosaic. He even launched a daily named ‘Telugu’ to make his point drive into the society.
Ramamurthy’s concentration on uplifting the tribal languages places him way ahead of all the linguists at that time. His work on Sora language continues to be a great inspiration for all of us on the field. During his research for Savara language, he had to travel in the forests resulting in excessive use of quinine due to which he became deaf. Still he succeeded in giving Savara language a script and prepared lexicons. His fight for the languages has brought him a lot of honors. He was given the title ‘Rao Saheb’ by the British government for his services towards Savaras and to Telugu. He was also conferred the medal of Kaisar-i-Hind Medal by the British Government in the year 1933.
Gidugu Ramamurthy was certainly a boon to not only Telugu but many other tribal languages. Indian linguistics found its true meaning in his works. He looked beyond his own great mother tongue and used his talents to help develop preliterate languages.
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