The present volume on Tribal Languages of Ladakh is the second part of the Vol. VI of the series: Studies in Tibeto-Himalayan Languages. In the first part of it, which appeared in 1998, a detailed descriptive account of Brogskad, a little known language of the Dokpas of Brog-yul (Upper Sind Valley) has been presented and the descriptive analysis of the two other speeches of the Ladakh region, viz., Balti and Purki, are being presented in the forthcoming third part of it. The aim of this volume is to present a comprehensive account of Ladakhi, the principal language of the western Tibetan group of Himalayan languages. In it, besides a detailed synchronic account of Ladakhi, topics of linguistic, historical and cultural interest, such as, (a) Place of Ladakhi among the languages of the western Himalaya, (b) Inter-relationship among the languages of Ladakh region, vis-a-vis Tibetan, (c) Linguistic sub-stratum of Ladakhi, (d) Regional and Dialectal variations of Ladakhi, etc. too have been discussed at some length in the Introductory chapter. As such the importance of this volume is self-evident. Moreover, the detailed descriptive account of Ladakhi presented in this volume will not be of absorbing interest only to the students and scholars of descriptive linguistics, but also to those, who are interested in the historical, comparative and anthropological linguistics or in the socio-linguistic aspect of Ladakhi and other languages of the Tibetan-family.
Professor D.D. Sharma (b. 1928), a renowned scholar of Sanskrit and Linguistics, served Panjab University, Chandigarh for nearly 28 years. He obtained Ph.D, in Sanskrit from the Benaras Hindu University in 1958 and later on Ph.D and D.Litt in Linguistics from the Panjab University, Chandigarh, besides the highest Oriental title, viz. Sahity¯ach¯arya (Varanasi) and Diploma in French, German and Persian. Professor Sharma is well acquainted with nearly two dozen Indian and foreign languages and has to his credit 30 research volumes and scores of research papers on the subjects of languages, culture and literature, published in research journals of national and international repute. In Linguistics he has made substantial contribution in the fields of descriptive, historical, comparative, contrastive linguistics, sociolinguistics and semantics. It was in recognition of his contribution to Linguistics that he was awarded the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru Fellowship (1984-86) to undertake the linguistic survey of the Himalayan languages from Ladakh to Bhutan. In the field of Sanskrit language and literature too his contribution is equally substantial. His research work on Kalidasa bagged him an award from the Sanskrit Academi, Uttar Pradesh and was awarded ‘All India Vidvat Samm¯an’ by the Gy¯an Kalyan D¯atavya Ny¯as, Delhi in 1998, and Sanskrit Vidvat Samm¯an by Samp¯urn¯anand Sanskrit University, Varanasi (1999), Millennium Sanskrit Samm¯an by Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan (Govt. of India) and H.R.D. Ministry (2001) and Certificate of Honour by the President of India (2001). On his retirement from the Panjab University in May 1989 he was awarded Emeritus Fellowship by the U.G.C. for the completion of his 12 volume research project on Himalayan languages, of which 9 volumes have already appeared. Currently, he is actively engaged in the completion of the remaining volumes of the abovementioned project and is also working on an 8-volume project on ‘Socio-Cultural History of Uttar¯akhand’ and ‘Cultural Encyclopaedia of Uttar¯akhand’ for which he has been awarded Indira Gandhi Memorial Fellowship (2001-03).
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