Context: The Lok Sabha passed the J&K Official Languages Bill, 2020 that seeks to include Kashmiri, Dogri and Hindi as the official languages in the newly created Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. 

More on news:

  • Urdu will continue as the official language of JK along with English and three more will be added.
  • There was a provision for an academy to promote Punjabi, Gojri and Pahadi.
  • Demand for inclusion of more languages in list: Soon after the Union cabinet’s decision, different political and ethnic groups in J&K have demanded the inclusion of Gojri, Pahari and Punjabi in the proposed Bill.


  • Before the reorganisation of J&K on August 5, 2019, only English and Urdu were the official languages in the former State.
  • In 1889, Dogra ruler Pratap Singh adopted Urdu as the official language of the princely kingdom of J&K, replacing Persian which had enjoyed that status for more than three centuries. 
  • The same was carried forward by J&K’s constituent assembly while adopting the state constitution.
  • Other UT examples:
    • The Pondicherry Official Language Act, enacted in 1965, adopted Tamil as the official language, and Malayalam and Telugu as official languages in Mahé and Yanam regions of the UT, respectively.
    • The assembly of the National Capital Territory of Delhi also enacted a law to adopt Urdu and Punjabi as second official languages of the UT.

Dogri language

  • It is a member of the Indo-Aryan group within the Indo-European languages. Dogri is spoken by approximately 2.3 million people, most commonly in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. 
  • It is one of the 22 official languages of India. 
  • The earliest written reference to Dogri (using the paleonym Duggar) is found in the Nuh sipihr (“The Nine Heavens”), written by the poet Amir Khosrow in 1317 ce.
  • Dogri is descended from Classical Sanskrit.

Kashmiri language

  • It is  also known as Keshur or Koshur, belongs to the Northwestern group of the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European language family. 
  • Kashmiri is one of the 22 official languages of India. 
  • It is the largest of the Dardic languages, and the only language in the Dardic group that boasts an early literary tradition. 
  • It is spoken primarily in the Jammu and Kashmir state of India. 
  • According to the 2001 census, it has 5.4 million speakers in India, with a total total of about 5.6 million speakers 

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