Kathmandu, December 27
The latest population census held in 2011 says that there are a total of 123 languages in Nepal. However, the Language Commission had identified eight more languages, taking the total count to 131.
There are 19 languages spoken by more than 100,000 people and 30 languages spoken by 10,000 to 100,000 people. Likewise, there are 37 languages with less than 10,000 speakers while 37 languages have less than 1,000 speakers in the country, according to the commission’s undersecretary Gehenath Gautam.
The commission has been working to record various near-extinct languages and documenting their grammar. The grammars of Bambule, Raji, Dotyali and Doteli, Dura, Syuwa (Kagate), Meche languages has already been documented while the process of documenting grammar of Danuwar language is underway.
In the last fiscal year, the commission had recorded Linkhim, Bajjika, Chhantyal, Santhali, Bhot, Sherpa, Thami, Syuba, Ranbansi, Urav, Loharung, Sunuwar, Gopali, Tajpuriya, Yamphu, Sonaha, Jumli, Yakhya, Chamling, Sampang, Belhare, Lapccha, Aaathpuriya, and Babule languages etc.
A language with less than 100,000 speakers is regarded near-extinct.