CPI(M) today attacked the Narendra Modi government for its directive on the use of Hindi as the medium for government communication on social media while seeking modification of the same. "Government should modify its policy and, along with Hindi, use other national languages as well as English for communication on social media," the party's Politburo said in a statement here.
The Modi government's decision to use Hindi as the sole medium of communication for government information on social media was "against the principle of linguistic equality and is an injustice to other national languages," it said.
A recent circular issued by the Director (official language) Avadesh Kumar Mishra, said, "All officers and employees who operate official accounts on Twitter, Facebook, blogs, Google, Youtube should use Hindi and English languages. Prominence should be given to Hindi."
It had also announced a cash reward for those employees who do most of their official work in Hindi. However, after a controversy broke out over the issue, the government sought to downplay the circular, saying it would promote all languages of the country.
Dubbing it as the beginning of "imposition of Hindi", DMK chief M Karunanidhi had said "giving priority to Hindi will be construed as a first step towards creating differences among non-Hindi speaking people and making them second class citizens".
DMK chief M Karunanidhi cries foul over central government's directive on Hindi
Dubbing as beginning of "imposition of Hindi", the NDA Government's reported directive to officials to give priority to the language in social media, DMK chief M Karunanidhi said on Thursday that Prime Minister Narendra Modi should focus on economic growth and social development. "Giving priority to Hindi will be construed as a first step towards attempt at creating differences among non-Hindi speaking people and making them second class citizens," the 90-year old leader, whose party spearheaded the anti-Hindi agitation in the 1960s in the state, said in a statement. Read more
Ensure English is used on social media, Jayalalithaa tells PM Narendra Modi
The chief minister said she had learnt that the two office memoranda issued by the Union Home Ministry "direct that official accounts on social media like Facebook, Twitter, blogs, Google and YouTube, which at present use only English, should compulsorily use Hindi, or both Hindi and English, with Hindi being written above or first". That makes the use of Hindi mandatory and English optional, she said in the letter. "As you are aware, as per the Official Languages Rules, 1976, communications from a central government office to a state or Union Territory in Region "C" or to any office (not being a central government office) or person in such state shall be in English." Read more
ALSO READ: Why Prime Minister Narendra Modi's push for Hindi doesn't appeal to more than half of 1.2 billion Indians
Since taking office as India's prime minister last month, Hindu nationalist Narendra Modi has taken a clear stand in support of Hindi, pushing for it to replace English as the preferred language of the capital's urbane and golf-playing bureaucrats. Hindi and English are India's two official languages for federal government business, although India's constitution recognises a total of 22 languages. But with more than half of India's 1.2 billion people using another language as their mother tongue, the push for Hindi risks widening communication divides in a highly diverse country, especially in the southern and eastern states, where local languages or English are preferred. Read more