World Sanskrit Day aka Sanskrit Diwas is celebrated on the Poornima of the Shravana month in Hindu calendar. The day is celebrated to focus on the ancient Indian language to promote its revival and maintenance. This year Sanskrit Day falls on August 3rd.
In India, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has asked all its affiliated universities and colleges to mark the World Sanskrit day or World ‘Samskrita’ Day with appropriate celebrations on August 3, 2020. The Consortium of Sankrit Universities will celebrate the day by organising ‘Samskrita Week' celebration from July 31, 2020, to August 6, 2020. Read on to know more about this day.
The objective of the day is to illuminate the younger generation about the ancient Indian language which is believed to have originated about 3500 years ago. The idea is to advocate the people about the Sanskrit language and the need to preserve our national heritage.
The word Sanskrit is derived from the prefix 'Sam' which refers to 'Samyak' meaning 'entirely'. While the word 'krit' means 'done'. The language is also termed as Dev Vani which means God-language as it is believed to have generated by God Brahma. According to the Hindu mythology, it is God Brahma who then passed on the knowledge of this language to the sages who then communicated it to the earthly disciples.
In some sources, the origin of the language is said to be since the 2nd Millenium BCE, when the Rig Vida was assumed to be written. In literature, Sanskrit is however classified into Vedic and Classical periods where the Vedic Sanskrit refers to the language mainly found in the Rig Veda, the Puranas and the Upanishads.
The main significance of celebrating this day is to promote the use of the language Sanskrit. Even being an ancient Indian language, a very small percentage of Indian population actually speak the language. However over the years due to various programmes and initiatives, many people are volunteering to keep themselves rooted towards this ancient Indian heritage and thus are registering themselves for learning the Sanskrit language.
The UGC mentioned that in 1969 the Government of India decided to celebrate World Sanskrit Day on Raksha Bandhan that falls on the full moon day of the Hindu month of Shravana. Thus, UGC has asked all universities to organise events that will fall in the same line as organised by the Consortium of Sankrit Universities.
Due to the situation of the coronavirus outbreak in India, the programmes or competitions will be held virtually through online modes. For students in Acharya level or MA and Shashtri or BA programmes, the competitions will include story-telling in the traditional language, Sanskrit song competitions and Sanksrit poem recitation. According to UGC, these activities would promote the language and "cherish the glory" of Sanskrit.
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