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UGC Seeks Opinion of 900 Universities Over Compulsory Teaching of Hindi

The three-language formula for schools in non-Hindi speaking states have English, Hindi and a regional mother tongue.


Updated:July 26, 2019, 1:53 PM IST
UGC Seeks Opinion of 900 Universities Over Compulsory Teaching of Hindi
Union Minister for Human Resource Development Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank' (Image: LSTV Grab)

New Delhi: Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' informed the Lok Sabha on Thursday that UGC has sought opinion of 900-odd universities regarding compulsorily teaching of Hindi.

The University Grants Commission is a regulator in higher education, granting funds and advises the universities on their academic affairs.

The Telegraph quoted UGC sources saying: "The higher education regulator had written to the universities last October saying it had received a letter from BJP politician Vijay Kumar Malhotra asking it to make Hindi a compulsory subject for university and college students." The HRD forwarded the letter to the Commission.

The CPM member KK Ragesh asked Pokhriyal “whether the regulator was pushing for Hindi to be taught to every undergraduate student.”

To this the HRD minister responded saying, “The UGC has informed that a reference was made to universities to seek their opinion/suggestions regarding the teaching of Hindi. However, the universities are autonomous bodies and any decision to teach any particular subject is under their control.”

This year in June, the draft New Education Policy was made public for seeking suggestions.

The regional parties in southern states objected to the recommendation of three-language formula that made Hindi compulsory. The three-language formula for schools in non-Hindi speaking states have English, Hindi and a regional mother tongue.

This first draft prepared by the NEP committee headed by former ISRO head K Kasturirangan, recommended the study of languages by students in the non-Hindi speaking states, which would include the regional language, Hindi and English. This lead to strong objections from political parties in Southern states.

Following the furor over the issue, the Union government revised the draft New Education Policy, which dropped Hindi from the section called “flexibility in the choice of languages” and removed contentious phrase “non-Hindi speaking states.”

The move to tweak the draft in order to contain the angst was dissented by some of the panel members.

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