A List of Hindi Imposition Activities of the Indian Government in 2015 (Part A: January - September)

Thanjai Nalankilli

TAMIL TRIBUNE, May 2016 (ID. 2016-05-01)
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BJP - Bharatiya Janata Party
CBI - Central Bureau of Investigation 
IFS - Indian Foreign Service 
IIT - Indian Institute of Technology 
JEE - Joint Entrance Examination
MHA - Ministry of Home Affairs 
MP - Member of Parliament 
RSS - Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh

2015-0000A: Hindi at Rameswaram Railway Station

At Rameswaram Railway station, a Hindi word and its meaning in English are written on a board every day. This is called "One Day, One Hindi Word" (2015) See Photo H-289 What is the purpose of this, other than flexing Hindi power in Tamil Nadi? The effort might have been directed towards teaching Tamil words to non-Tamil Indian government employees working in Tamil Nadu. Many do not know Tamil and unable to communicate with local people who know neither English nor Hindi.


2015-0000B: A Hindi Word Every Day

For years, Indian government offices in non-Hindi states, are asked to keep a board and write a Hindi word and its meaning in English every working day (2015). See Photo H-280 Thrusting Hindi into non-Hindi throats seems to be more important than most other things. Better idea would be to teach ou-of-state employees the state language so they may communicate to local people whom they have come to serve.


2015-0000C: Hindi Rules at the 1000 Year Old Temple in Tamil Nadu

Messages posted in the Gangai Konda Chola Puram Temple (Tamil Nadu) which is under Indian Government control because it is an United Nations Heritage site are in English and Hindi only (2015). See Photo H-285 No Tamil in the temple built by one of the greatest Tamil kings Rajendra Cholan-I. In fact he is one of the greatest kings of South Asia. He conquered vast amounts of territory not only in the Indian subcontinent but also in Sri Lanka, Burma and Indonesia. He defeated many northern armies on his ways to Ganges and brought water from Ganges for this temple. Now Tamil has no place in the temple he built. What a sad situation for Tamil people! 

By the way Indian government would not allow installation of a statue of Rajendra Cholan's father Raja Raja Cholan-I out side (NOT inside) the Tanjore Big Temple (Thanjai Periya Kovil) that Raja Raja Cholan built. Read the full reasons in Reference 1.


2015-0127A: Hindi Division at the Ministry of External Affairs

Indian government opened a Hindi Division in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and increased its importance by appointing a joint secretary-rank IFS officer to head it. (IFS - Indian Foreign Service). The newly created Hindi Division will, among other things, manage the World Hindi Conference later in 2015. There are efforts to increase the use of Hindi in internal communications within the ministry. (The New Indian Express; January 27, 2015) 20150601


2015-0204A: Karnataka Governor Addressed Karnataka Legislature in Hindi

Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala gave his 2015 Republic Day speech in Hindi and also addressed the Joint Session of Legislature in February in Hindi. Some organizations opposed it. A few politicians murmured about it but no major opposition from politicians (Tehelka.com; February 4, 2015)

Things did not change. Here is news from 2017.
Governor Vajubhai Vala addressed the joint session of the Karnataka State Legislature in Hindi. (India Times; February 7, 2017)


2015-0223A: Hindi at Central Bureau of Investigation

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) required that Hindi be used in all of its administrative matters, including tenders, reports submitted to parliament and officers' service records (Press Trust of India; February 23, 2015).


2015-0300A: Indian Railways - No Complaints from Non-Hindi Peoples

Indian Railways, operated by the Indian government, an official can work in in either Hindi or English and his/her writings will be translated to the other language; similarly officials created a website www.coms.indianrailways.gov.in where people can file complaints; you can file complaints in English or Hindi only (as of March 2015).


2015-0421A: Hindi Lessons for Members of Parliament (MP)

Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has hired an expert to teach Hindi to non-Hindi MPs. 30 MPs have volunteered to learn. (The Economic Times; April 21, 2015) We have no problem if someone learns Hindi voluntarily but it should not be because it imposed indirectly by making it difficult or impossible for them to do their duty of representing their constituency without knowing Hindi. That is unacceptable.

An official told a reporter that some MPs expressed their inability to understand the language when either Prime Minister Modi or home minister Rajnath Singh speaks in the parliament despite the English translation facility available to them on headphones. (The Economic Times; April 21, 2015) Why are English translations un-understandable? There seems to be no problem for translation from English to Hindi but why the problem from Hindi to English? Hire translators who can speak proper English? Are incompetent translators purposively hired to force non-Hindi MPs to learn Hindi? Is the Hindi-politicians controlled Indian government purposively providing un-understandable translations? Two-language formula depends on proper translations. Fix the problem instead of forcing non-Hindi MPs to learn Hindi. It is unacceptable. It is against the official languages act.

One member of parliament (MP), Mr. Mandal, said that he finds it difficult to understand what's going on in the parliament since most of it is in Hindi. (The Economic Times; April 21, 2015) This is a violation of the two-language formula (Hindi and English). According to that formula, anyone in India should be able to communicate with the Indian government in Hindi or English. If some MPs find it difficult to understand what is going on and thus unable represent their constituency without knowing Hindi, the solution is not to learn Hindi but insist that two-language formula be implemented fully. If necessary, file a lawsuit to make sure English continues to be an official language of India in name and in fact.


2015-0530A: Tamil Nadu Labour Union Oppposes Hindi Imposition in Life Insurance Corporation (LIC)

Indian Government owned Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) asked that all communications must be in Hindi. Tamil Nadu Life Insurance Progressive Employees Union condemned the implementation of Hindi in Southern Zonal Office saying it would be difficult for the staff to communicate in Hindi as majority of its clientele do not know Hindi. The union asked that a Department of Tamil be set up in LIC (in Tamil Nadu) like the Official Language Implementation department that oversees implementation of Hindi in LIC ofices. Some members wanted all forms used in Tamil Nadu be printed in Tamil also (currently they are in English and Hindi only). The Union wanted that policy holders be allowed to sign in Tamil. It is noteworthy that LIC requires that officials at the rank of assistant regional officer and above sign in Hindi. Fifty per cent of the books purchased by LIC are in Hindi. (The New Indian Express; May 30, 2015)


2015-0905A: Is Modi the Prime Minister of Hindi states only? 

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed school students all over the country through television on Teachers Day in September 2015. He spoke in Hindi with no translation in state languages or even English. Most students in Tamil Nadu did not understand the Hindi speech. Some schools did not even bother to turn on the television because the speech was in Hindi (Times of India; September 5, 2015). Is Modi the Prime Minister of Hindi states only? Modi was using government funds to speak as the Prime Minister of India. Does this not violate the constitution and language acts that require that all Indian government communications to non-Hindi states should be in English also? Should some language patriot lawyer sue the Prime Minister? (I am not a legal professional; just wondering.)


2015-0906A: Non-Hindi Students Need not Tune in

Visakini of Tamil Nadu, a talented 15 year old college student with one of the highest IQs at 225, was selected by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's office to converse with him on the Teachers Day (2015) as the representative student from Tamil Nadu through a nationally televised interaction that was telecast to all schools in the country. She asked him a question in English and he answered her in Hindi (although he can and had talked in English many times) with no English or other non-Hindi translation. (Deccan Chronicle; September 6. 2015) How many college or school students from non-Hindi states understood this exchange? Was this taxpayer funded televised event for the benefit of Hindi states only? Is it a violation of the constitution and language acts not to provide English translation? 

2015-0907A: Tamil Students Discriminated in IIT Selection Process

Madras High Court refused to direct the Indian government to hold Indian Institutes of Technology-Joint Entrance Examinations (IIT-JEE) in Tamil and other regional languages, saying the question falls within the domain of the government. (Times of India; September 7, 2017)

At one point Indian Government lawyer told the court that the medium of instruction at IIT is English, and inadequacy in English language would cause a problem to candidates writing the examination in Tamil. To this the plaintiff lawyer responded that then the examinations should not be conducted in Hindi either. (Times of India; September 7, 2017) [After all, if inadequacy in English would cause problems to candidates writing the examination in Tamil (because the medium of instruction at IIT is English), would this not cause similar problems for candidates writing the examination in Hindi?]

Although this news item was primarily about Madras High Court decision on discrimination of Tamil students, it is equally applicable to students from a number of other non-Hindi states also (Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra, West Bengal, Odisha, ...)

2015-0910A: Hindi Unites India!?

Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) magazine Panchjanya said in a cover article that Hindi has the potential to unite the country and “chase away” English (Indian Express; September 10, 2015). RSS and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) that rules India at this time (2016) are closely linked organizations. Many BJP leaders and ministers are or were RSS members. So the views expressed by RSS should be considered seriously.

We do not know where these Hindi zealots get the idea that Hindi unites India; Indian constituent assembly (constitution assembly) had one of the divisive and longest debate on the question of Hindi as official language. Anti-Hindi agitations that rocked India (especially Tamil Nadu) in 1965 was one of the most strongest and violent agitations of South Asia before or after the British left. Indian security forces shot and killed over 60 unarmed civilians in Tamil Nadu in a sinle week in February 1965 to quell the agitation. Seven young men self-immolated themselves to express their opposition to making Hindi the official language of India.

We agree that Hindi can chase away English through Indian government actions. Only ones who benefit from it is Hindi people. Non-Hindi peoples will have a new master "The Hindi People". Imperial British Empire is replaced by a mini Hindi Empire.

2015-0914A: Indian Institute of Technology or Hindian Institute of Technology? (IIT or HIT?)

Here is yet one more reason given for not holding IIT-JEE examination in most Indian languages.

Indian Institutes of Technology-Joint Entrance Examination (IIT-JEE examination) is currently being conducted in English, Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati and Urdu. Top scorers get admission to much coveted Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and to good jobs. So there is demand from many states that examinations be held in all state languages. Examination board says that it is difficult to translate the questions and have so many sets of question papers in so many different languages. (PaGaLGuY.com; September 14, 2015 [PaGaLGuY is India's largest education network.]) If India has too many languages to manage, it is time to split India into manageable countries. You do not wear shoes that are too tight for your feet and suffer. You get new shoes. If the current centralized Indian system inflicts pain on certain regions, either decentralize or allow those who do not want to continue to suffer to leave the Indian Union. Why students whose mother tongue is Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati and Urdu have a special advantage?


2015-0916A: Sanskrit is the Mother and Hindi is the Elder Sister of all Indian Languages

Indian government Home Minister Rajnath Singh said that Sanskrit is the mother of all Indian languages and he considers Hindi as the elder sister of all regional languages because it is closer to Hindi (Hindustan Times; September 16, 2015).

Sanskrit is not the mother of at least one "Indian language" Tamil. How can Hindi be the elder sister of other Indian languages? It is far younger than many Indian languages. While the age of Telugu, Tamil and some other languages are measured in 1000s of years, Hindi's age is measured in 100s of years.

Thanjai Nalangkilli


1. Why is King Raja Raja Cholan Standing outside the Thanjai Big Temple? (by Thanjai Nalankilli), TAMIL TRIBUNE, April 2001 (16 KB) (tn)


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