BENGALURU: As Kannadigas across the world celebrate 60 years of the state’s formation on Tuesday, the Department of Kannada and Culture has announced that it will focus on bringing together IT and Kannada language, literature. The move comes as an effort to spread Kannada language across the globe.
A senior official from the department said, “In order to popularise Kannada and reach more number of people, there is a need to give an IT touch to Kannada. This year, when we are celebrating 60 years of the formation of Karnataka, we need to bring together IT and Kannada language. Without IT, it would be difficult to reach more people, especially the younger generation,” he said.
K A Dayanand, Director of Kannada and Culture Department, said Chief Minister Siddaramiah will launch the Kannada digital library as part of the Rajyotsava celebrations on Tuesday.
Speaking to Express, Radhakrishna, co-ordinator of Kanaja, an encyclopaedic portal in Kannada that works under the department, said they are developing a digital library for Kannada. They had approached a few engineering colleges to develop Kannada-related software for this purpose. “A few students developed a web and mobile-based application, where one can listen to the text. It-s a text-to-speech software for Kannada,” he said.
Radhakrishna explained that in the last one decade, several European countries have made available books written in their languages in digital format. Irrespective of the year they were published, one can find it on the internet. “We have already started the first phase of the digital library. In the next five years, every Kannada book (department will take copyright) will be available in digital format. To begin with, we have digitised books published by the Kannada and Culture Department,” he said.
The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has a similar digital library where over 5.5 lakh books of Indian languages are available, hardly 3,000 are Kannada books.
“The state government will be a pioneer in digitising such a large number of books,” he said.