The Assam Kaziranga University

The Assam Government has formed a fourteen-member committee to put forward different methods to prepare a separate Unicode chart for the Assamese script.

The committee will be headed by the Assam Cultural Affairs Minister, Bimal Bora.

The committee will also have an additional chief secretary, President of the highest literary body of state, Assam Sahitya Sabha, Assam Unicode activist Dr Satyakam Phukan and eleven others as members from various fields.

The primary objective of the committee is to advise the government about developing the Assamese script and the separate Unicode for the Assamese language.

Unicode is a universal character encoding standard that assigns a code to every character and symbol in every language in the world.

Unicode characters are defined by the international standard, and it is based on submissions from the concerned governments. Every character typed on a keyboard has a unique code number.

Various prominent Assamese individuals and organisations are making effort and have been campaigning for recognition of the Assamese script as a separate entity for which a unique code is needed for each alphabet that could be recognised by the Unicode Consortium.

A committee has also attended a Unicode conference in London last year and presented a proposal by the Assam government, where it was recommended that the Bengali script be renamed as “Bengali-Assamese.” But the effort to find out a unique code for the Assamese script remains.

The Assamese language will be recognised as a separate language from Bengali in Unicode, once the Assam Government complete the project for a separate Unicode chart of the Assamese script. Currently, Assamese and Bengali have the same Unicode with minor differences.

The Assam Kaziranga University