Rudra Murthy


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HiNER: A large Hindi Named Entity Recognition Dataset
Rudra Murthy | Pallab Bhattacharjee | Rahul Sharnagat | Jyotsana Khatri | Diptesh Kanojia | Pushpak Bhattacharyya
Proceedings of the Thirteenth Language Resources and Evaluation Conference

Named Entity Recognition (NER) is a foundational NLP task that aims to provide class labels like Person, Location, Organisation, Time, and Number to words in free text. Named Entities can also be multi-word expressions where the additional I-O-B annotation information helps label them during the NER annotation process. While English and European languages have considerable annotated data for the NER task, Indian languages lack on that front- both in terms of quantity and following annotation standards. This paper releases a significantly sized standard-abiding Hindi NER dataset containing 109,146 sentences and 2,220,856 tokens, annotated with 11 tags. We discuss the dataset statistics in all their essential detail and provide an in-depth analysis of the NER tag-set used with our data. The statistics of tag-set in our dataset shows a healthy per-tag distribution especially for prominent classes like Person, Location and Organisation. Since the proof of resource-effectiveness is in building models with the resource and testing the model on benchmark data and against the leader-board entries in shared tasks, we do the same with the aforesaid data. We use different language models to perform the sequence labelling task for NER and show the efficacy of our data by performing a comparative evaluation with models trained on another dataset available for the Hindi NER task. Our dataset helps achieve a weighted F1 score of 88.78 with all the tags and 92.22 when we collapse the tag-set, as discussed in the paper. To the best of our knowledge, no available dataset meets the standards of volume (amount) and variability (diversity), as far as Hindi NER is concerned. We fill this gap through this work, which we hope will significantly help NLP for Hindi. We release this dataset with our code and models for further research at


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Role of Language Relatedness in Multilingual Fine-tuning of Language Models: A Case Study in Indo-Aryan Languages
Tejas Dhamecha | Rudra Murthy | Samarth Bharadwaj | Karthik Sankaranarayanan | Pushpak Bhattacharyya
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

We explore the impact of leveraging the relatedness of languages that belong to the same family in NLP models using multilingual fine-tuning. We hypothesize and validate that multilingual fine-tuning of pre-trained language models can yield better performance on downstream NLP applications, compared to models fine-tuned on individual languages. A first of its kind detailed study is presented to track performance change as languages are added to a base language in a graded and greedy (in the sense of best boost of performance) manner; which reveals that careful selection of subset of related languages can significantly improve performance than utilizing all related languages. The Indo-Aryan (IA) language family is chosen for the study, the exact languages being Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Marathi, Oriya, Punjabi and Urdu. The script barrier is crossed by simple rule-based transliteration of the text of all languages to Devanagari. Experiments are performed on mBERT, IndicBERT, MuRIL and two RoBERTa-based LMs, the last two being pre-trained by us. Low resource languages, such as Oriya and Punjabi, are found to be the largest beneficiaries of multilingual fine-tuning. Textual Entailment, Entity Classification, Section Title Prediction, tasks of IndicGLUE and POS tagging form our test bed. Compared to monolingual fine tuning we get relative performance improvement of up to 150% in the downstream tasks. The surprise take-away is that for any language there is a particular combination of other languages which yields the best performance, and any additional language is in fact detrimental.

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Language Model Pretraining and Transfer Learning for Very Low Resource Languages
Jyotsana Khatri | Rudra Murthy | Pushpak Bhattacharyya
Proceedings of the Sixth Conference on Machine Translation

This paper describes our submission for the shared task on Unsupervised MT and Very Low Resource Supervised MT at WMT 2021. We submitted systems for two language pairs: German ↔ Upper Sorbian (de ↔ hsb) and German-Lower Sorbian (de ↔ dsb). For de ↔ hsb, we pretrain our system using MASS (Masked Sequence to Sequence) objective and then finetune using iterative back-translation. Final finetunng is performed using the parallel data provided for translation objective. For de ↔ dsb, no parallel data is provided in the task, we use final de ↔ hsb model as initialization of the de ↔ dsb model and train it further using iterative back-translation, using the same vocabulary as used in the de ↔ hsb model.


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Cognitively Aided Zero-Shot Automatic Essay Grading
Sandeep Mathias | Rudra Murthy | Diptesh Kanojia | Pushpak Bhattacharyya
Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Natural Language Processing (ICON)

Automatic essay grading (AEG) is a process in which machines assign a grade to an essay written in response to a topic, called the prompt. Zero-shot AEG is when we train a system to grade essays written to a new prompt which was not present in our training data. In this paper, we describe a solution to the problem of zero-shot automatic essay grading, using cognitive information, in the form of gaze behaviour. Our experiments show that using gaze behaviour helps in improving the performance of AEG systems, especially when we provide a new essay written in response to a new prompt for scoring, by an average of almost 5 percentage points of QWK.

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Looking inside Noun Compounds: Unsupervised Prepositional and Free Paraphrasing
Girishkumar Ponkiya | Rudra Murthy | Pushpak Bhattacharyya | Girish Palshikar
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2020

A noun compound is a sequence of contiguous nouns that acts as a single noun, although the predicate denoting the semantic relation between its components is dropped. Noun Compound Interpretation is the task of uncovering the relation, in the form of a preposition or a free paraphrase. Prepositional paraphrasing refers to the use of preposition to explain the semantic relation, whereas free paraphrasing refers to invoking an appropriate predicate denoting the semantic relation. In this paper, we propose an unsupervised methodology for these two types of paraphrasing. We use pre-trained contextualized language models to uncover the ‘missing’ words (preposition or predicate). These language models are usually trained to uncover the missing word/words in a given input sentence. Our approach uses templates to prepare the input sequence for the language model. The template uses a special token to indicate the missing predicate. As the model has already been pre-trained to uncover a missing word (or a sequence of words), we exploit it to predict missing words for the input sequence. Our experiments using four datasets show that our unsupervised approach (a) performs comparably to supervised approaches for prepositional paraphrasing, and (b) outperforms supervised approaches for free paraphrasing. Paraphrasing (prepositional or free) using our unsupervised approach is potentially helpful for NLP tasks like machine translation and information extraction.

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Happy Are Those Who Grade without Seeing: A Multi-Task Learning Approach to Grade Essays Using Gaze Behaviour
Sandeep Mathias | Rudra Murthy | Diptesh Kanojia | Abhijit Mishra | Pushpak Bhattacharyya
Proceedings of the 1st Conference of the Asia-Pacific Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 10th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing

The gaze behaviour of a reader is helpful in solving several NLP tasks such as automatic essay grading. However, collecting gaze behaviour from readers is costly in terms of time and money. In this paper, we propose a way to improve automatic essay grading using gaze behaviour, which is learnt at run time using a multi-task learning framework. To demonstrate the efficacy of this multi-task learning based approach to automatic essay grading, we collect gaze behaviour for 48 essays across 4 essay sets, and learn gaze behaviour for the rest of the essays, numbering over 7000 essays. Using the learnt gaze behaviour, we can achieve a statistically significant improvement in performance over the state-of-the-art system for the essay sets where we have gaze data. We also achieve a statistically significant improvement for 4 other essay sets, numbering about 6000 essays, where we have no gaze behaviour data available. Our approach establishes that learning gaze behaviour improves automatic essay grading.


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Addressing word-order Divergence in Multilingual Neural Machine Translation for extremely Low Resource Languages
Rudra Murthy | Anoop Kunchukuttan | Pushpak Bhattacharyya
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, Volume 1 (Long and Short Papers)

Transfer learning approaches for Neural Machine Translation (NMT) train a NMT model on an assisting language-target language pair (parent model) which is later fine-tuned for the source language-target language pair of interest (child model), with the target language being the same. In many cases, the assisting language has a different word order from the source language. We show that divergent word order adversely limits the benefits from transfer learning when little to no parallel corpus between the source and target language is available. To bridge this divergence, we propose to pre-order the assisting language sentences to match the word order of the source language and train the parent model. Our experiments on many language pairs show that bridging the word order gap leads to significant improvement in the translation quality in extremely low-resource scenarios.


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Judicious Selection of Training Data in Assisting Language for Multilingual Neural NER
Rudra Murthy | Anoop Kunchukuttan | Pushpak Bhattacharyya
Proceedings of the 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

Multilingual learning for Neural Named Entity Recognition (NNER) involves jointly training a neural network for multiple languages. Typically, the goal is improving the NER performance of one of the languages (the primary language) using the other assisting languages. We show that the divergence in the tag distributions of the common named entities between the primary and assisting languages can reduce the effectiveness of multilingual learning. To alleviate this problem, we propose a metric based on symmetric KL divergence to filter out the highly divergent training instances in the assisting language. We empirically show that our data selection strategy improves NER performance in many languages, including those with very limited training data.