The government has in a way made the national language of the country—Urdu a laughing matter for all by literally translating the English version of its websites in a bid to complete the verdict of Supreme Court to the Federal and Provincial governments to adopt and boost the Urdu language as the official language.
Many of the government websites, including the Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Information Technology, Ministry of Education and even the official website of the government which is known as the Pakistan.gov.pk has been placed on the Google translate at the right side of each page.
The government has literally humiliated the language and has made fun of itself by doing word to word translation of all the details it has placed on the page. The computer-produced translation many times completely changes the meaning and context of the message or the information available on the website.
Also Read: Digital Urdu Dictionary Launched
The Constitution of 1973 has recognized Urdu as the only national language of Pakistan. As per the article, 251 of the constitution arrangement should be made for the use of Urdu for the official and other purposes within a time frame of fifteen years. A sub-clause permits the use of English until the final arrangements are made while as per another sub-clause provinces can promote the “provincial languages” along with Urdu.
The Federal government chose the option of Google translate, instead of making a separate page for every website, which has made things pretty bad—just the fulfilment of the requirement.
Ministry of Education has also selected the same options of translation and the section of “situation vacant” has been translated to Khaali Soratay Haal, which actually in Urdu means empty situation. The funniest one is the Urdu translation of download which is Utaar do, which means to take it down in Urdu.
Ministry of Planning and Finance websites have got the same option, however, there is nothing on the page regarding Urdu except for the latest news while the rest of the page appears in English once an Urdu link is selected.
The Federal Public Service Commission has somewhat been decent and honest and has made a dedicated page for Urdu having the important translation of documents including the frequently asked questions and ordinance.
Moreover, not a single province has abided with the instructions of Supreme Court for the making of a separate Urdu portal in accordance with the directions of SC.
Anwar Maqsood—the famous writer and humourist laughed after listening to few translations and said that they were not mistakes or typos and called them jokes instead.
Akhtar Raza—a novelist said that despite the facilities and personalities the government has in the country for the task, still, the government is making use of such ridiculous means for translations.