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Kolkata, Oct. 18.Darjeeling, 18 October 2020: Radio Salesian 90.8 FM will start broadcasting one hour radio program in Lepcha language from Saturday 24 October 2020. The program is prepared by three Lepcha radio journalists who have just undergone one month of intense training with Radio Salesian.

The formal launch is scheduled at 10 am October 19 in the presence of chairman of West Bengal Mayel Lyang Lepcha Development Board Ren. Lyangsong Tamsang, and nine board members at Radio Salesian.

Backed by Lepcha Board (one of 18 tribal boards in the hills) the radio program consists of “Message to Lepcha Community“ in which Lepcha Personalities, Folk Tales, as well as instruction on Language and Culture will be aired in Lepcha language.

The 7.00 p.m. program on Saturday will have a repeat broadcast at 3 pm on Monday.

The programs can also be heard on World Wide Web with “Listen2MyRadio“ free App available on Play Store. This is a joint venture of Radio Salesian in collaboration with West Bengal Mayel Lyang Lepcha Development Board.

The first three young Lepcha Radio Journalists from Kalimpong to be trained by Radio Salesian RJs are Suk Tshering Lepcha, Jilbert Lepcha and Liesa Lepcha sponsored by West Bengal Mayel Lyang Lepcha Development Board.

Lepcha Language is claimed as one of the ancient language of the hills and also an official language of the hills until 1911.

“An aboriginal people, Lepchas mostly reside in the remote villages of the hills where radio could be most beneficial medium to connect people,“ claims RJ Suk Tshering Lepcha.

Radio Salesian Program coordinator RJ Samir took charge of their training with the help of other RJs.

Director of Radio Salesian Father C M Paul says, “We are very happy to note that the interns were very quick and eager to learn. They have shown to be confident in producing their programs, packaging it for broadcast as well as hosting their show.“

Rector of Salesian College Father Tomy Augustine said, “We look forward to active collaboration of other hill tribal boards to partner with Radio Salesian for the promotion of their language and culture.“

The Indigenous Lepcha Tribal Association believes there is a Lepcha population of more than 150,000 in West Bengal. Among them, 90 percent reside in Darjeeling and Kalimpong. END

The following members are expected to be present on the occasion:

1) Ren. Lyangsong Tamsang, Chairman, WBMLLDB

2) Ren. Rogen Wangdi Lepcha, Member, WBMLLDB

3) Gyalsten Lepcha, Member, WBMLLDB

4) Pemba Lepcha, Member, WBMLLDB

5) Duk Tshering Lepcha, Member, WBMLLDB

6) Dolin Lepcha, Member, WBMLLDB

6) Ren Denish Lepcha, Teacher, St. Robert, Darjeeling.

7) Sanchok Tshering Lepcha, President Kurseong Thoom

8) Pasang Narbu Lepcha, Secretary Kurseong Thoom

9) Samrit Lepcha, Culture Staff, WBMLLDB

10) Ren Bruno Lepcha, WBMLLDB