Itanagar: Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu has inaugurated the state’s first formal indigenous language and knowledge system school in East Kameng district, an official release said on Sunday.

The first-of-its-kind school called ‘Nyubu Nyvgam Yerko’ was inaugurated at Rang village near Seppa on Saturday.

Khandu said the school will help in promoting and preserving indigenous traditions, culture and language, it said.

He lauded the Donyi Polo Cultural and Charitable Trust for the initiative and Pai Dawe for donating land for the Gurukul-type institution.

Khandu said his government is committed to preserving the indigenous culture of the state and has established the Department of Indigenous Affairs, for which he has earned the praise of people from even the neighbouring states.

“People from our neighbouring states congratulated me.

Many of them have lost their indigenous identity. We Arunachalees have woken up at the right moment,” Khandu said.

He appealed to indigenous leaders to suggest ways to the department for preserving cultures and languages.

“Being a Monpa, I follow Buddhism. My culture is safe as it is institutionalised. We learn and earn degrees in Buddhism. Therefore, we need to establish institutes that teach our kids their respective indigenous culture, heritage, language, way of living and take pride in it,” he said.

The chief minister, however, emphasised that modern education cannot be ignored and should go hand-in-hand.

He thanked the Vivekananda Kendra Vidyalaya group for taking up the responsibility to impart formal education to the students of the Nyubu Nyvgam Yerko.

He said Rs 3 crore has been earmarked for the development and upkeep of the school.

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