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'Alookam' and 'Raktphalam' for Dinner: Lucknow Market is Selling Vegetables in Sanskrit

The report surface soon after National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) Chairman Nand Kumar Sai advoated Sanskrit be made India's new national language.


Updated:June 11, 2019, 5:20 PM IST
'Alookam' and 'Raktphalam' for Dinner: Lucknow Market is Selling Vegetables in Sanskrit
Representative image

A market in Lucknow has taken up the novel challenge of educating its customers in the ancient language of Sanskrit. How? By naming the products sold there - in this case, vegetables - in Sanskrit.

If you are visiting the Nishatganj market in Lucknow to buy vegetables, be prepared with your Sanskrit basics. As per a report in news agency IANS, vegetable names like aloo (potato) and tamatar (tomato) have been changed to their Sanskrit versions - 'alookam' and 'raktphalam'.

That's not it. Karela (Bitter gourd) is being sold as "karvelah' and gajur as (carrots) as 'gunjanakkam'. Other culinary necessities such as lahsun (garlic), pyaaz (onions) and adrak (ginger) are being sold with the names 'lashuman','palanduh' and 'adrakam' respectively.

According to IANS, some vegetable sellers have been experimenting with the initiative in an effort to bring Sanskrit back in vogue among customers, many of whom have no idea what a 'raktphalam' or a 'palanduh' is.

However, the report also said that many local shopkeepers were not taken in by the initiative, claiming the whole thing was nothing more than a publicity stunt. They maintained that many of the sellers themselves did not understand the Sanksrit words.

The report surfaced soon after of National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) Chairman Nand Kumar Sai advocating Sanskrit be made India's new national language as even southern states would not have a problem with that.

Countering the suggestion, Congress leader and Thirivananthapuram MP Shashi Tharoor told ANI, "Sanskrit is a wonderful language but it is not easy language and is not currently spoken by most, so it would be a bit of stretch to suddenly turn Sanskrit into an official language, not a realistic request”.

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