Today because of some work I got the chance to head towards a department whose tragic story I had heard in tones of pity, sadness and defeat. Those emotions became a real picture as I saw the sad picture myself that the Department of Persian Language (DOPL) held within its wall and promised a future that no one could save it from.
I remember hearing my parents discuss last year that what a tragedy it was that no one had applied to the Department of Persian Language that year. The same story was true for the department of Bengali as well. Walking from my own department towards the gate of the department, I would often look upon the DOPL and upon seeing the closed windows I would feel sad for the many teachers and professors for whom that language would have meant so much and today it was facing a dead end.
The story of my encounter with DOPL today happened only due to a notice that was posted on the bulletin board. It said that a certain Study Center for the study of Persian was offering free admission to its language course. Fortunately, the timings of the class happened to match my free time on all three days the classes were offered. I didn’t exactly know that where the department was so I went to DOPL first, knowing that it would be the best place to find any clue.
And that is when the tragedy became alive! It came in front of my eyes and this time it had a face.. a face that knew all too well that its end is about to come and no one can stop it.
Maybe it is a human nature characteristic to find hope even when you are at the end of the tunnel for I was able to find some over there. I was able to identify a fight that the department was raging against a society that is more than ready to die intellectually.
I saw the same scene repeat itself in 4 rooms at least. In all these rooms there was one teacher and one student! But the classes were happening. The teachers were teaching and the students were there to learn. Maybe it was a trick of my mind but I actually felt that the teachers wanted to be there.. to teach and impart the knowledge as much as they can before they die so that there is a hope that others can spread it too one day. It was like that scene when a person is drowning and is waving his hands fanatically in hope that someone would come and save it. Sometimes you are saved and sometimes there is simply no one around to see your desperation.
It was sad! it was a tragedy. It was extremely disturbing!
Here is a language that could have been our national language.. a language that was at a time spoken by more than half the population….here is a language that the genius of the worlds have preferred.. that has some of the best literature in the world written in it. Here is a language that was a language of the Sufi’s, and had their testimonials about their dedication to God, of Imam Ghazali, Rumi, Ghalib, and Iqbal.. here is a language that is slowly vanishing away.
But maybe this Language course would turn out to be the savior for it. Maybe their ploght has been seen and is now being saved from the evitable death. There were many students that were there to take admission in the course. Maybe these would prove to be a few more rays of hope! Just Maybe!