MP: In Baghelkhand, poets give local dialect a new name and identity | indore | Hindustan Times
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MP: In Baghelkhand, poets give local dialect a new name and identity

Rankled by Bagheli writers’ stand on the accent of their dialect, a group of poets from Umaria, Shahdol and Anuppur districts of MP has called the dialect ‘Bagondi’ – a mixture of Bagheli and Gondi.

indore Updated: Nov 29, 2015 20:09 IST
Bagondi poets plan to write to the state government soon for grants to popularise and enrich the dialect.
Bagondi poets plan to write to the state government soon for grants to popularise and enrich the dialect.(HT photo)

Rankled by Bagheli writers’ stand on the accent of their dialect, a group of poets from Umaria, Shahdol and Anuppur districts of MP has called the dialect ‘Bagondi’ – a mixture of Bagheli and Gondi.

Describing them as Bagondi poets, they plan to organise a conference to press for the recognition of the dialect. “When we write poetry in our language, many Bagheli poets reject us by saying that the dialect is not Bagheli.

About three years ago we decided to call our dialect as Bagondi which is a mixture of Bagheli and Gondi,” said Santosh Dwivedi, a poet from Umaria.

‘Bagondi’ poets have started a campaign to enrich the dialect under the Vatayan Sahitya Sansthan based in Umaria. The poets who have joined the campaign include Manju Mani, Shambhu Soni ‘Pagal’, Satyendra Gautam, Anil Mishra, Ram Nihore Tiwari, Jagdish Payasi and Ram Kumar Mohaba.

Bagheli is considered an Indo-Aryan language spoken in the Baghelkhand region of central India. It was counted as one of the languages classified as dialects of Hindi by the Census report until 2001.

“After pure Bagheli poets heard that we have given our dialect a new name, they became liberal in the last one year but we have decided that we will call ourselves as Bagondi poets,” Dwivedi said.

“The core Bagheli writers -- mainly from Rewa, Satna and Sidhi -- claimed that our tone is Gondi and we include many words of Gondi dialect, and we were not termed as Bagheli poets, hence we are trying to give our own dialect an identity,” said ‘Pagal’.

Bagheli speakers are found mainly in six districts of MP — Rewa, Satna, Sidhi, Shahdol, Umaria and Anuppur.

Shahdol, Umaria and Anupur districts are located between two mountain ranges -- Vindhya and Kaimur -- dominated by two tribes, Gonds and Baigas.

“We have organised many meetings before naming our dialect Bagondi. Some poets have suggested ‘Vindhya-Maithali’ but we named it as ‘Bagondi’. Two poetry books in this dialect have been published. We will write to the state government soon and demand grants to enrich the dialect,” said Anil Mishra, a poet and writer.

“This is true that the language spoken here is a distorted form of Bagheli because many Gondi words have been adopted and the tone is different. But it is an extension of Bagheli only,” said Professor RD Mishra, a Bagheli poet and critic. “I don’t know why some core Bagheli poets have started rejecting them.”

Mishra further said, “Since Gondi was rich in the three districts, Bagheli has taken a different form under Gondi’s influence which they are now claiming as Bangodi.”