Read: The people behind India’s first sign language dictionary (via BBC News)

Posted on February 28, 2017

BBC News has an article today about India’s first sign language dictionary, reflecting on what life is like for the country’s 5 million deaf people.


Sign language has evolved in India over the last 100 years, but the government has only now decided to codify it in the form of a dictionary.

Once completed, it will translate Indian sign language into English and Hindi, and will be available in print and online editions.

Andesha Mangala, assistant professor at the government-funded Indian Sign Language Research and Training Centre (ISLRTC), said it was important to compile the dictionary.

“Indian sign language is very scientific and has its own grammar, but lack of awareness has meant that many deaf people are not even aware of institutions where they can learn it and equip themselves for public communication,” she said.

According to the latest census, India has five million deaf and hearing impaired people.

But the country only has about 700 schools which teach sign language. And unlike English or Hindi, it is not written.

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