Initiative starts in Lamjung school to preserve 'Dura' language

DURADANDA, LAMJUNG: With the beginning of the new academic session, Dura language is being taught to the students of Devi Sadan Primary School located in Turlungkot of Sundarbazaar Municipality-11 in Lamjung district.

The language is being taught to students from grades one to five by Juna Dura, who has received training of the language, according to the school administration.

Principal Buddharam Darji informed that the school lies in Duradanda area indicating the importance of teaching Dura language. "We have started teaching the language by searching for related contents."

According to Yam Bahadur Dura, a senior of Dura community, the language had been taught in the school prior to this in 2072 BS. However, the class could not get continuity and had closed down. This time around he believes that the class would progress smoothly as the seniors of the community have become alert of its value and the need to preserve it.

Likewise, the founding president of Dura Service Society, Bhakta Bahadur Dura took the initiative to introduce the language as part of the school course. "There was a risk of Dura language gradually losing its existence in a place where it is the main language of the people. If the children learn the language, the language will live on," he said, adding that the campaign of preserving Dura language had taken its root from the school level.

His wife Ganga Maya Dura provided copy, pen and reading materials to 35 students of Devi Sadan Primary School, which facilitated the opening of the language class.

An understanding has been reached among the stakeholders to run the language class and provide necessary support for the same. The memorandum of understanding (MoU) has been signed by representative of Dura Service Society, local level representative, and representative of school operation committee, among others.

The agreement points out crucial aspects of running the class, said Yam Bahadur. Monthly remuneration of the language teacher has been fixed at Rs 2,000, that of the monitoring officer at Rs 1,000, and facilitator at Rs 500. According to Principal Darji, Bhakta Bahadur had provided a lumpsum amount of Rs 42,000 for the purpose. All expenses related to the language class will be borne by Bhakta Bahadur. The MoU also states that the monitoring officer will submit progress report of the class every six months.

Likewise, a fund is under operation in the school for the past two years in the leadership of Bhakta Bahadur, who is currently in the UK. The fund with a pocket of Rs 50,000 was established to assist the children from low economic background in their studies.

Dura community has been living in Duradanda area, which comprise of Sindure, Chandreshwar, Neta, Dhuseni, Kunchha, Bhorletar among others, in Lamjung district. In recent times, people belonging to the community have also been living in 12 other districts of the country including Kaski, Tanahun, Chitwan, Nawalparasi, Kathmandu, Lalitpur among others.