Kannada is one of the major Indian Languages with 2,000 years of history and the written literature has 1,500 years of varietable tradition. According to the 2001 census, there are 52,733,958 (nearly 53 million) Kannada speaking people in India alone with wide spread diaspora all over North America and Australia .
Going by the crieteria set for recognition of a language as a classical one, Kannada rightfully qualifies for accord of a classical language on all counts – antiquity, ancient body of literature, original living traditions and continuity. Kannada has impeccable credentials as documented by UNESCO in it its monograph on Asian scripts, which ranks Kannada among the major scripts of the world.
Rajya Sabha MP, KB Krishnamurthy from Karnataka recently (28.Apr.2005) urged the Central Goverment to accord classical language status to Kannada, by making a special mention in the House of parliment. The member said beyond its lexical purity, Kannada transends the creative aspects further on to canonises local knowledge systems, and grammatical traditions.
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