Beaconhouse breaks silence in Punjabi language controversy

October 19, 2016
Published in Pakistan


LAHORE: The Beaconhouse School System, one of Pakistan’s premiere school networks that become embroiled in controversy after a circular regarding Punjabi language, has issued clarification about its notification, Samaa reported.

In a weird move last week, Sahiwal Boys Campus of the school system announced its discipline policy, imposing a ban on speaking Punjabi within and outside the school premises while terming it a ‘foul language’.

A notification of the school emerged on the social media, drawing criticism from literary organisations and Punjabi Language activists who showed serious concerns, calling it’s a discriminatory ban on Punjabi language in Beaconhouse School System.

“Foul language is NOT ALLOWED within and outside the school premises, in the morning, during the school hours and after home time. Foul language includes taunts, abuses, Punjabi [curses] and hate speech,” the notification had said.
However; in a statement today, the Beaconhouse School System blamed the school management responsible for the ‘mistake’, saying that the management had withdrawn the circular with immediate effect.

“The headmaster only intended to stop students from using Punjabi swear words, but he did not phrase the sentence right in the notification… The word ‘curses’ was inadvertently missed by Headmaster Jamil Ahmed. This is because cursing in Punjabi is a specific issue with a few older boys at Jamil’s branch in Sahiwal,” the statement said.

“He did not understand that his sentence structure implied that all of Punjabi was a foul language. Indeed, such an interpretation would never have occurred to him because he himself is a proud Punjabi-speaking Punjabi, as are half of our students and teachers,” the Beaconhouse statement read. – Samaa

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Story first published: 19th October 2016


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