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English and Khah Language: Philological Study across Chenab Valley Jammu and Kashmir


Dr. M. M. Sohil

Government High School Bohardar

Ramsu, Ramban

 Jammu and Kashmir, India



English language is the fastest to grow and attracted the vernaculars and speakers of different languages of the world. English is the only one language of the world which influences quicker and faster on the local dialects and cultures. It constantly changes our culture and increase the grip of the speakers over other dialect users. It is understood that English language scenario is universally effective and growing. Every dialect with culture get shift into the English and multicultural society. Languages spoken across the society get mixed with the English. Khah language is spoken in Chenab Valley in Jammu and Kashmir which is mother tongue of more than two lakh people. Khah language has a blend influence on other speakers because they have contacts with English and other language users throughout the country. English has philological relationship with all languages and slowly change the culture of the native speakers. This study is taken to explore the relationship of English language with the Khah speakers in the context of philology across Chenab Valley Jammu and Kashmir. The study is intended to give insights into the overview of history and current relationship of English and Khah language speakers. It is understood that present scenario of the society in the context of language speakers is multilinguists and multicultural due to universal communicational platform of English language and its contacts with local dialects of the society.

Keywords: English Language, Khah Language, Philology, Vernacular, Multilinguists,           Multicultural


Any sort of language is man’s power to live in this world and a source of leading life among human beings is wonderful due to the use of language. (Sohil Mohd Muzamil, Reformative Trends of English Dialect through Hindi and Urdu Speakers, P 493)

Today English is considered as the global language and everybody want to communicate in this language. It is emotional and excited language spoken throughout the world. In the initial stage of twentieth century the people living in and across the Chenab Valley do not have access to learn English language and it was not known to them. It is only after 1960s and 70 that English language was introduced at higher secondary level and in the next decade at the primary and secondary level. It was only Urdu language used in schools as medium of instruction. Texts were prescribed in Urdu and this was used as official language in the territory. English language was introduced towards the end of twentieth century as a second language and English text books were introduced in 1990s at primary and secondary level. Urdu and Khah languages were used as medium of instruction at schools level. In 90s text books in English language for primary classes were introduced and later on in the initial stage of twenty first century language for every subject in the school curriculum. Along with Urdu language medium of instruction was Khah language in the schools and even at secondary level. Khah as mother tongue of the people reside in district Ramban is mostly used as medium of instruction in schools in the rural areas. Today English, Urdu, and Khah language are used in the multilingual society as medium of instruction in schools in the rural areas across the Chenab Valley in Jammu and Kashmir. Most people in rural areas are multilingual and can talk in Urdu, Khah, Kashmiri, and in other vernaculars but English language is not used as much as it is used in prescribed texts and recommended to use as medium of instruction in primary, secondary, higher secondary, and at college level. The present scenario of the English language is better as compared to the twentieth century and Khah languages speakers are using English for different purposes along with their mother tongue.

Objectives of the Study

v  To find out the relationship and influence between English and Khah speakers.

v  To prove the historical evidence of Khah language users and Khasha tribe.

v  To understand the mutual interaction as multilingual and multicultural across the society.

v  To examine the philological study of English and Khah languages across Chenab Valley Jammu and Kashmir.

Philological and Historical Perspectives of Khasha Tribe and Khah Language

One Aryan group called the Khashas settled in the mountain region between Kashmir and Nepal. The Khashas spoke an Old Indo-Aryan language related to Sanskrit. (Britbill & Turner, P 7)

Khah language is an Indo Aryan language spoken by Khasha tribe. It is an ancient language spoken in most of the districts of Jammu province and in three to four districts of Kashmir. The speakers of this language have migrated to different cities of the country and to different countries of the world. Khasha people are early inhabitants of Himalayan regions who came from Central Asia as nomads and occupied the regions from Nepal to Kashmir mentioned in most of the ancient historical books. They slowly spread their kingdoms in and across the areas of Chenab Valley and ruled over Kashmir near about 214 years before Mogul rule in India. Today Khah language speakers migrated from district Doda and Ramban to different districts of Kashmir like Srinagar, Kulgam, Anantnag, Budgam, and in Jammu province people moved to different districts like Udhampure, Reasi, Jammu, Rajouri, Samba and Kathua.

Khah language is an ancient language spoken by Aryan group of people who were considered as early inhabitants of Peer Panchal area of the Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. It was the language of Khasa tribe the most important tribal group and warriors mentioned in the Vedas, Mahabharata, Puranas, Nilmata, Rajataragini and other historical books. This language is used by the people since the ages before. It was spoken along with Persian, Sanskrit, Prakita and other languages. It was used in these areas since the Aryan migrated from central Asia to Indian Subcontinent. This language was spoken with the people who used Sanskrit and it has some root words with this ancient language. The speakers of other language believe that this language is an old language of the people who were called Kashtriyas, Kush, Khasas, Khashas, Khas, Khasha or Khah. In different times people used different words for this tribe like the Mahabharata called them warriors and another group of people lived with them were Kirates. Both the tribal groups of people were the rulers of these hilly areas and their language was known as Khasha or at present Khah language. When we analyze and study on the morphological aspect of morphemes or lexical roots we find that this language was spoken with all ancient languages of the Aryan groups in the Indian Subcontinent.

Urdu, Khah, and English as Medium of Instruction

Khah and Urdu were used in the schools during the nineteen and twentieth century as medium of instruction because English was not known to the Khasha people. English language is used as medium of instruction at global level. It was not possible to use this language as medium of teaching learning process where there were already multilingual communities and English was not known to the people before in the mid of nineteenth century. In such areas teacher used local language as medium of instruction in order to facilitate the children. In the twentieth and even at the present century Urdu language is used as medium of instruction in the areas where Khasha people reside but a teacher has to use Khah or other local language in order to teach the students of such areas. Khasha society is multilingual and all these languages like: Urdu, Khah, Kashmiri, and English are being used as medium of instruction in schools. Khah and Urdu languages are used as medium of instruction since the educational system was established because the early system of education was bound to utilize the local languages, local sources and local tutors so that children can understand and learn with examples.

Cod Mixing and Cod Switching English and Khah

Cod mixing and cod switching is common process in every bilingual and multilingual society. The process of mixing and switching come into existing along with the bilingual society. English is always used in such a context particularly when it happens to communicate in second language. This process of cod mixing and cod switching can be found mostly among literates but now a days it is found that even illiterates are using these cods.

Cod Mixing

1.      Khah language: Haroon to Rohaan Hi asalam ilikum jvaan chus sa!

English Language: Haroon to Rohaan Hi Asalam Ilikum are you okay!

2.      Khah language: Rohaan Alhumdolilah auvn chus okay!

English language: I am okay!

3.      Khah Language: auvn ahthus busy.

English Language: I was busy,

Cod Switching

Speech in English cod switching in Khah language

Today is education is considered as an instrument to change.

Without it we cannot change ourselves, and cannot change the society. 

So, Auvn chuss wanu chati ki mehnat kor.

Wakhat ma kor zaaie talabi ilmathe.

Description of Bilingual and Multilingual Society

Khasha society was monolingual but when migration was started automatically the community became bilingual. People move from one place to another place in search of food, shelter, and cloths they do not understand the language of the early inhabitants so the need for another language was automatically created in the same society. This process has given birth to another language. Languages also come into existence with the invasions, trumps and wars due to all these factors the people living in the same area got conversed into multilingual and multicultural. Such historical fact is obvious with the progress and development of English language. Need for English language was realized by some local educationists and leaders and also by enthusiasms of people who love to use English language. Today English is used as third language in many multilingual societies and it is important to learn this language for different purposes.

English Influence on Multicultural

Our culture is now composite culture because of mixture of different culture and mixture of different languages. English language influences quickly because of social contacts, social togetherness, and fast internet communication. Every language user get affected and wanted to mix his/her culture and language with English language and culture. This language does not only influence on our communication aspect but it also influences on our thinking, culture, behaviors, social values and our costumes. This is not only language but the English culture which automatically attract the people.

Roman Khah to English

Khasha people use English alphabets to write in Khah language this system is known as roman Khah to English writing system. Most of the Khah illiterates and semi literates use Roman Khah language to English. This is also used by linguists, scholars and writers in order to write their manuscript so that the readers will understand the language and its meaning. This method of writing is followed by every category of people at different levels and at various platforms.

Standard English Education through Migration

Khah language users migrated from their original place of resident to the urban areas where English medium institutions have been opened to educate the children. Khah language speakers moved towards the city because to give Standard English education to their children so that they can compete and sit in the competitive exams. Standard English educational institutions were not available in the areas where this language is spoken and is used as mother tongue. We find that Khah language users are using English for different purposes. Khasha people are serving everywhere and in every sectors whether government or private. Now English medium institutions have been opened in order to learn English language. Maximum focus has been given to its fluency, utilization and standard.

Social Apps and Khah Language

…Illiterates who use different dialects other than English dialect. They also use words by imitating users of English language while their communication in business and in other sphere of life. (Sohil Muzamil, English Language Easy To Speak And Learn Among Illiterates P 2)

Today we find social media is full of vernaculars usage. It has been found that literates and illiterates both are using social media. It is understood that Khah language users have created Whatsapp groups, Facebook groups, YouTube Channels, and other social apps. Khah social world is full of Khah songs, Khah Poetry, Khah Stories, Khah Speeches, Folksongs, Folklores, Translations, Jokes, and Dialogues.

Research Methodology

Research method is a process of finding facts based on collecting primary or secondary data to find solution and conclusion for your proposed field of research. It is a tool to apply your techniques finding causes and giving solution and offer your recommendations for the problem existing in the society. Research methodology for this article is applied is descriptive and field work in the areas where these languages are spoken and utilized for different purposes. This research paper was taken to give new insights to the readers about the unexplored aspects of English and Khah languages. So the field of research is descriptive and analytical in a way to find facts about languages and perspectives of the speakers.


In the conclusion it is understood that the history and structure of the Khah and English languages are complex phenomena in the context of multilingual society. Khah language is used as mother tongue and English is used as second or third language for different purposes. In the areas of Chenab Valley Jammu and Kashmir Khah language speakers used different languages as mother tongue first it was only Khah than it is Kashmiri, Urdu, and Punjabi all these languages are being used as mother tongue because the society is multilingual and multicultural. Sources have been studied and analyzed in order to understand the facts regarding the history, language and culture of Khasha tribe and Khah language. In this research article English and Khah languages have been studied in the context of school teaching learning process, structure of utilization in institutions, social usages, writing perspectives, and core aspects and relationship between English and Khah users.

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