This plan is to introduce Mandarin to pupils from grade six onwards. But first, the teachers have to be trained to do so. After a fine research made at 500 schools this year, the results revealed that students were interested in learning Mandarin, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) decided to offer the dialect as an optional second or third language, after English.
In the month of August, S.Jaishankar India's ambassador to China and Xu Lin, the director general of Hanban, the official Chinese organization overseeing the teaching of Mandarin abroad, signed an agreement to train 300 Indian Teachers at Universities in China.
The Mandarin option will be rolled out as pilot project, starting with selected schools in New Delhi where tone and greetings will be taught using software. Jabin T Jacob, the assistant director of the Institute of Chinese Studies in New Delhi said "There are enough Chinese speakers here but just not enough good ones. You need two years of concentrated study for anyone to even get the basics in school. This language has no short cuts".
However, there is no shortage for Indians with Chinese language skills, but those with Mandarin language degree prefer to work in the more lucrative sectors of translation or private education. He said "Universities do teach the language but very few stay on long enough to get teaching expertise. Everything is more lucrative than teaching, especially in the private sector."
India and China have had a troubled and at times, violent relationship. This month marks the 40th anniversary of the India-China war. However, since the early 1990's India has pursued more friendly relations with its eastern neighbours, including China.
What is Mandarin : Mandarin Chinese is the official language of Mainland China and Taiwan, and is one of the official languages of Singapore and the United Nations. It is the most widely-spoken language in the world. Mandarin Chinese is sometimes referred to as a "dialect," but the distinction between dialects and languages is not always clear. There are many versions of Mandarin spoken throughout China, and these are usually classified as dialects.
Mandarin is part of the Chinese family of languages, which in turn is part of the Sino-Tibetan language group. All Chinese languages are tonal, which means that the way words are pronounced varies their meanings. Mandarin has 4 tones. Other Chinese languages have up to 10 distinct tones.