India: Hindi Imposition on Foreigners in India

Thanjai Nalankilli

TAMIL TRIBUNE, December 2014 (ID. 2014-12-01)
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1. The Event

Indian government's Hindi imposition on non-Hindi citizens of India is an ongoing process [Reference 1]. Now the Indian government has turned its attention on imposing Hindi on foreign diplomatic staff posted in India. Here is an example from recent events.

Indian government Home Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to a United Nations (UN) event in New Delhi on July 17, 2014. The speech was in Hindi and it was not translated to English simultaneously although the audience included non-Hindi Indians as well as many foreign officials. So these people were at a loss as to what the Indian Home Minister was saying. They could as well have stayed in their offices and attended other duties and wait for an English translation later in the day or next day. No need for them to attend the meeting.

A Home Ministry official told a reporter that Rajnath Singh is proficient in English and has in fact spoken in English in parliament "but speaking in Hindi is a matter of national pride for the minister". The ministry official justified not providing simultaneous English translation by saying foreign officials posted in India "should have familiarity with Hindi". [Economic Times: July 18, 2014]

2. Our Comment

1) So, according to the Hindi dominated Indian Government, not only non-Hindi citizens should learn Hindi but also foreign diplomatic officials.

2) Hindi may be the pride of Rajnath Singh hailing from the Hindi regions, but it surely is not the pride of Assamese, Bengalis, Kannadigas, Malayalis, Tamils, Telugus, etc. If Hindi people want Hindi to be the national pride, let them carve out the Hindi states out of India and form their own country and declare Hindi as their new country's pride and joy.

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