Islamabad, October 9: ‘The Wakhi speaking people from all four countries (Pakistan, Afghanistan, China and Tajikistan) should work together for development of a standardized script. Future prospects of Wakhi language’s progress and preservation are brighter in Pakistan. The Wakhi language program broadcast by Radio Pakistan Gilgit is the only program of its kind in the entire world. Teaching Wakhi language as a subject at a school in Gojal is a wonderful initiative.’
These views and observations were shared by a group of three Russian Scholars, Dr. Ivanov Vladimir Borisovich, Dr. Vinogradova Sophia Petrovna and Dr. Dodykhudoeva Leyli Rahimaovna, during a reception hosted by Gojal Education and Cultural Association (GECA), in Islamabad, on their return from Gilgit – Baltistan.
The elders and youth of of Islamabad based Wakhi Pamiri community thanked Moscow University and the visiting scholars for showing interest in studying the cultural, ethnographic and linguistic traits of the Pamiri communities living in different parts of Pakistan, like Ishkoman (Ghizar), Yarkhoon (Chitral) and Gojal (Hunza).
The scholars agreed that there is a need to explore prospects of inter-university and inter-institutions arrangements for future research and cultural exchanges. Opportunities for students seeking scholarly studies in Wakhi and other Pamiri languages were discussed.
The idea of establishing internet-based “TV” and radio channel, for cost-effective promotion and preservation of cultural and linguistic heritage was also discussed during the meeting.
The visiting scholars spent almost week in GB, visiting parts of Gojal and Ishkoman to meet the Wakhi communities.
During their stay in Gilgit, the scholars also met the Vice-Chancellor and academic staff of KIU. “We have not signed any formal research agreement with KIU yet”, Dr. Ivanov told this scribe. “We discussed different ideas and possibilities of collaboration with KIU”, he further said.
Dr. Ivanov Vladimir is Chair of the department of Iranian Studies at Moscow University, while Dr. Leyli and Dr. Sophia are Senior Researchers at the centre of higher learning.
A group of around 20 men, women and youth, including GECA officials, had gathered in Islamabad to meet the scholars and thank them for their interest in the Wakhi language, while also exploring different avenues for research and cultural collaboration in the future.