Typing in Assamese gets easier
In what could be termed as a historic decision, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) has formally accepted the proposal of a separate Assamese code chart submitted by the Assam Government.
Dr Sikhar Sarma, who was part of the delegation that attended the meeting with BIS, told that the meeting debated on the issue and accepted the Government of Assam proposal, which will be submitted to the International Standard Organization for consideration and acceptance as international standard.
Though BIS does not provide the Unicode, it is a member of the ISO that provides Unicode.
The Assam Government had submitted to the BIS that Assamese is a historically evolved script with its own set of characters and symbols representing written texts. But the non-inclusion of this in Unicode and ISO standards has triggered problems in using the language in computers.
During the initial days of digital standards for the Indian languages in the first Indian Script Code for Information Interchange (ISCII) released by the BIS in December 1991, a clear mention was made of the Assamese script. The ISCII document released by the BIS clearly mentioned that the northern scripts are Devanagari, Punjabi, Gujarati, Oriya, Bengali and Assamese, while the southern scripts are Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam and Tamil, an official said.