“Many have said technology and software cannot be built using Bangla, but the truth is they are not skilled at operating such technology,” the noted IT specialist and publisher said.
Jabbar also said Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had taken initiatives to use Bangla in every sector, including banks and courts, though such schemes ended after his assassination.
“We are unable to preserve our language. In fact, in social functions we employ English to send invitations and express greetings,” he said, adding that the courts, banks, National Board of Revenue, and other state-run institutions and projects are seeing a limited use of Bangla.
“Worldwide, there are 300 million Bangla speakers, which is the largest language group, but it the number is dropping as we have failed to properly retain our language,” said Md Nazrul Islam Khan, a former secretary of the education ministry and special speaker at the seminar.
“Through technology, the internet, IT industry, and language-migration, some languages have seen an increase in the number of speakers, but due to a lack of proper policies we have lost many Bangla speakers,” he said, urging research in this regard.
He added: “Hundreds of academic and research institutions study Bangla, but they have limited links to technology to promote the language.”
Insufficient experts and specialists are the reasons behind it, as he observed when implementing different state run-projects during his tenure in the education ministry.
“To endure, we need to get involved in making e-books and become more IT-oriented since language shapes human psychology,” he also said.
Chairman of the seminar, Prof Jamilur Reza Choudhury concurred, and said: “To spread Bangla across the world, we need to link language with modern technology.”
In this regard, he urged all organisations, including Bangla Academy and Matrivasa Institute, to be more serious in fulfilling their duties.
Meanwhile, a total of 121 new titles became available on day seven of the book fair, nine of which were formally unveiled to the plethora of visiting book-lovers.