Prime News, Nation, (New Delhi), September 14:-Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s appeal to unify India with the country’s most widely-spoken language, Hindi, was met with sharp criticism from the southern states on Saturday.
Veteran leaders such as DMK president MK Stalin and former Karnataka chief ministers Siddaramaiah and HD Kumaraswamy came down heavily on the home minister for pitching for ‘one nation, one language’ on the occasion of Hindi Diwas.
Several pro-Kannada organisations, including Karnataka Ranadheera Pade, also held protest marches in Bengaluru against Hindi Diwas.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi should issue clarification on Amit shah’s statement. Else, DMK will prepare itself for another language protest. Is it India or Hindi-a? India stands for unity in diversity. The BJP-led government is trying to collapse this and go against it. Home Minister should withdraw his statement,” said Stalin.
In June too, responding to the suggestion of a three-language formula for schools in Tamil Nadu, the DMK chief had said that “Hindi is not in the blood of the people of Tamil Nadu”.
“We have always stood against the imposition of Hindi and have raised our voices against the same in cases of exams like the railways, postal departments. We strongly condemn home minister’s statement,” Stalin said on Saturday.
Karnataka Congress also Slamming Shah for his statement and accused the RSS of trying to push its “sinister hidden agenda” to divide people.
Former Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah also hit out at Amit Shah, terming the use of Hindi as “forced Imposition”. “Languages are the basics of knowledge, and we need to cultivate them with love, not through pressure. Our opposition is not about the language of Hindi, but about its forced imposition. My opposition to the celebration of the Hindi Day,” he said in a tweet.
“Today, the central government is celebrating ‘Hindi Diwas’ across the country. When is Kannada language day celebrated with Hindi as the official language in the Constitution? @narendramodi Anyone? Remember the mirror is part of this union system,” tweeted HD Kumaraswamy.
Emphasising on the ability of Hindi to bring entire India together, Shah on Saturday said that it is extremely important for a country to have a common language that becomes the mark of its identity in the world. Later, at an event in New Delhi, the home ministry further said that every child will be taught Hindi in north eastern part of India.
In June, the Draft New Educational Policy 2019 had created an uproar, especially in the southern states, after a clause recommended mandatory Hindi teaching in all schools.
After the release of Union government’s original draft, all Opposition parties in Tamil Nadu blasted the recommendations, and even the BJP’s ally AIADMK refused to dilute the state’s two language formula.
Protests were also seen over in West Bengal, Maharashtra and Karnataka. The Centre went into damage control mode later, with senior cabinet ministers tweeting reassurances that Hindi would not be imposed without further consultations. Finally, the revised draft was uploaded by the Human Resource Development Ministry.
-(NAV, Inputs: Agencies)