‘Like Throwing Stones at a Bee Hive:’ Stalin Joins Chorus Against Imposition of Hindi in Tamil Nadu
The leaders across the political spectrum in Tamil Nadu are up in arms against the policy of three-language system which requires the schools to include Hindi, English and a regional language in the curriculum. It was announced on Friday as part of the draft New Education Policy.
File photo of DMK president MK Stalin. (PTI)
New Delhi: Warning of protests against the Centre’s policy of three-language system in schools, DMK chief MK Stalin said his party would wage a war if the BJP government ‘imposes’ Hindi in the state.
“There is no space for Hindi in the blood of Tamilians. Imposing Hindi on Tamil Nadu would be similar to throwing stones at a bee hive,” Stalin said, adding that the party MPs would take up the issue in the Parliament.
Leaders across the political spectrum in Tamil Nadu are up in arms against the policy even as hashtags like #StopHindiImposition and #TNAgainstHindiImposition trended on microblogging site Twitter.
The three-language system requires schools to include Hindi, English and a regional language in the curriculum. It was announced on Friday as part of the draft New Education Policy.
However, the government has said that no decision has been made yet. "This is misinformation that is being fed. There is no intention of spreading any language," I&B Minister Prakash Javadekar said, adding that the government is considering public consensus.
Earlier, DMK leader and Rajya Sabha member T Siva also warned of protests against the Centre’s three-language system.
Siva said such a policy will not be tolerated. "We are ready to face any consequences to stop the Hindi language from being forced on the people here,” he said.
“Imposing Hindi in Tamil Nadu is like throwing fire in a sulphur godown. If they insist on learning Hindi again, the students and youths will stop it at any cost. The anti-Hindi agitation from 1965 is a clear example,” he was quoted as saying by 'The Times of India'. “The embers of anti-Hindi protests carried out by the DMK are still alive in Tamil Nadu.”
Siva claimed that efforts are being made to make Hindi compulsory, adding that it hasn’t been made clear if languages of others states, particularly the southern ones, will be taught in Hindi-speaking states. He added that the party will oppose any attempts to impose Hindi.
DMK Lok Sabha member Kanimozhi said her party would oppose any such move. The sentiment was echoed by actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan. “No language should be imposed and those who are interested can learn any language of their choice,” said the Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM).
S Ramadoss, founder of the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK), said Hindi should not be imposed in Tamil Nadu.
Seeking to cool frayed tempers, the state government said it would continue with the current two-language formula.
In a series of tweets in Tamil, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram asked, "What is the meaning of three language formula in schools? The meaning is they will make Hindi a compulsory subject..."
In another tweet, he said "If Hindi language is a compulsory subject its import is imposition of Hindi."
"The BJP government's real face is beginning to emerge..." he said.
Going back to the past
Recalling the anti-Hindi agitations beginning as early as 1937 in Tamil Nadu, Stalin in a statement said the state since 1968 has been following the two-language formula of learning only Tamil and English.
The Dravidian party said recommendations like the "Gurukula" mode of education, teaching Sanskrit and sending Hindi teachers from Hindi-speaking states to non-Hindi speaking states would in due course cause a "big danger" to non-Hindi speaking people.
Recalling former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's assurance that English would continue to be in use till such time desired by non-Hindi speaking States, Stalin also pointed out that the state had years ago enacted a Compulsory Tamil Learning Act.
(With agency inputs)
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