Never sought to impose Hindi: Shah ‘Urged People Stalin ‘postpones’ To Learn It As anti-Hindi protest 2nd Language’
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Ranchi: Home minister Amit Shah on Wednesday clarified that he was not for forceful imposition of Hindi across the country but had only advocated its use as a common language.
Speaking at a function in Ranchi, Shah said his comments were misconstrued and politicised. Stating that he too hailed from a non-Hindi-speaking state to make his point, Shah said, “I come from Gujarat, which is a nonHindi belt and Gujarati is the mother tongue. I have repeatedly said that mother tongues (matri bhasas) should always be strengthened. With this, I didn’t mean Hindi. It is not our matri bhasha. But I feel there should be a common language in the country.”
He further said, “In this context, I have appealed to people that after their mother tongues, if you are learning any other language, you should learn Hindi as the second language. I have only requested. What’s wrong with it? I don’t understand. I never advocated imposing it forcefully. If anyone tries to do politics, it is their choice.”
He added, “A child can perform and prosper mentally only when he or she studies in his or her mother tongue. And it doesn’t mean Hindi. But there should be one common language in the country.”
Shah went on to say that sooner or later, one will have to build a movement to strengthen local languages. “I think we will have to build a mass movement (andolan) sooner or later to save and strengthen local languages. Otherwise, we will become like New Zealand, Australia or (those in) Africa which do not have their own languages. When I ask delegates from there about their languages, they draw a blank. We shouldn’t go that way,” he said.
Stressing that several states had a three-language formula, Shah said nothing of this sort could be implemented by force. “When it comes to safeguarding national interest, I don’t believe in compromising on use of force. But in situations like these (languages), there has to be a dialogue and consensus, not force,” he said. Chennai: DMK on Wednesday announced its decision to “temporarily postpone” the September 20 state-wide protest against Union home minister Amit Shah’s call for “expanding the reach of Hindi” across the country. DMK president M K Stalin decided to postpone the protest after a 45minute meeting with governor Banwarilal Purohit.
Stalin said that the governor explained to him that Shah’s speech on Hindi Diwas on September 14 had been misunderstood. “The governor forcefully stressed that Hindi will not be imposed on Tamil Nadu. We asked the governor whether the Centre will confirm this. The governor said he represented the Centre and was saying what the Centre had conveyed to him,” said Stalin.
Stalin said he came to know about a clarification issued by Shah on Wednesday by way of a tweet. “Thus, based on what the governor and Shah have said, we have decided to postpone the protest,” said Stalin. Shah’s clarification and the governor’s explanation, coming as they did in the wake of the proposed protest, were a “victory” for DMK, he said.
Sources told TOI that the NDA government had requested the governor to persuade DMK to withdraw its protest as it did not want anything to mar PM Modi’s visit to IIT Madras on September 30 as well as the second edition of the Indo-China informal summit that may be held in Mamallapuram.
‘I have repeatedly said that mother tongues (matri bhasa) should be strengthened. With this, I didn’t mean Hindi,’ Shah said