Telugu Day 2023 marks a celebration that highlights the significance of the Telugu language, one of the oldest and most widely spoken Dravidian languages. This observance seeks to promote the rich linguistic heritage of Telugu, its literary tradition, and its profound impact on culture and identity.
This topic of “Telugu Day” is important from the perspective of the UPSC IAS Examination, which falls under General Studies Portion.
Observing Telugu Day
Promoting the Telugu Language
Telugu Day serves as a platform to promote the Telugu language, which has a deep-rooted history and cultural significance. This observance aims to raise awareness about the language’s features, its literary contributions, and its role in connecting people across different regions.
The Telugu Language: A Glimpse
Telugu is renowned as one of the oldest Dravidian languages, with a literary tradition dating back to the 11th century. It holds a special place as a scheduled language included in the Eighth Schedule of the Indian Constitution. Moreover, it has been designated as a classical language by the Government of India. Telugu serves as the official language of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana and is spoken in parts of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Odisha. With over 90 million speakers worldwide, Telugu has a wide-reaching influence.
Telugu is known for its unique linguistic features:
- Phonetic Language: Each letter corresponds to a specific sound, allowing for consistent pronunciation.
- Syllable-Timed Language: In contrast to stress-timed languages like English, Telugu assigns equal weight to each syllable.
Honoring Gidugu Venkata Ramamurthy
Commemorating a Visionary
Telugu Day coincides with the birth anniversary of Gidugu Venkata Ramamurthy, a prominent figure in Telugu history.
- Birth: He was born on August 29, 1848, in Giddalur, Andhra Pradesh.
- Contributions: Ramamurthy was a Telugu poet, freedom fighter, and social reformer. He campaigned ardently for the upliftment of women and marginalized communities.
Historic Roots of Telugu Day
Inception and Celebration
The first celebration of Telugu Day took place in 1966, coinciding with the 118th birth anniversary of Gidugu Venkata Ramamurthy. This marked the initiation of an annual tradition that honors the Telugu language and its cultural significance.
Telugu Literary Excellence
Timeless Literary Works
Telugu literature boasts an array of significant literary creations:
- Mahabharatam: Nannaya’s masterpiece stands as one of the most important literary contributions.
- Kumara-sambhavamu: Nannecodu’s work adds to the diverse literary landscape.
- Basava Puranamu and Panditaradhyacharita: Palakuriki Somanatha’s creations delve into various themes.
- Ranganatha Ramayana: Gona Buddha Reddi’s work is celebrated for its distinct narrative.
- Nirvacanottara Ramayanamu: Tikkanna Somyaji’s translation holds cultural importance.
- Markandeya Purana: Marana’s creation adds depth to Telugu literature.
- Keyurabahu-caritramu: Mancanna’s work offers a unique perspective.
- Simhagiri Narahari Vacanamulu: Krishnamacharya’s contribution is recognized for its depth.
- Narsimha Puranamu and Harivamsa: Yerrana’s creations enrich the literary landscape.
The Telugu Trinity
Nannaya, Tikkana, and Yerrana
The Telugu literary landscape features a trinity of poets – Nannaya, Tikkana, and Yerrana. They achieved a monumental feat by completing the translation of the Mahabharata into Telugu, leaving an indelible mark on the language’s literary legacy.