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DateLine Sunday, 9 December 2007

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Government Gazette

Hounslow City Council makes Sinhala an official language

The city of Hounslow in the South West of UK made Sinhala one of its official languages from October 29.

The City council of Hounslow recognised that Sinhala was commonly spoken by its citizens.

This is the first time that Sinhala has been recognised outside Sri Lanka by a country or city. Around one-million Sinhala people living in Hounslow can get their work done in Sinhala after it was recognised as an official language.

Accordingly, it is also the responsibility of the City Council of Hounslow to provide translators and interpreters for the benefit of Sinhalese living in the city of Hounslow. Providing Sinhala language books to libraries are also a responsibility of the Urban Council of Hounslow. Hounslow has been recognised even in Europe as one of the cities in which a large number of Sinhalese live outside Sri Lanka.

The Hounslow Sri Lanka Janahanda Foundation carried out a campaign to make Sinhala an official language. Its Chairman, Sri Lal Dias, appealed to the Council by forwarding thousands of signatures continuously.

Opposition leader and leader of the Labour Party of Hounslow, Jegadeesh Sharma presented the proposal to the council for approval.

 

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