CHANDIGARH: Punjab's Public Work Department (PWD) on Sunday confirmed that works towards ensuring the primacy of Punjabi language over Hindi and English on signboards on national highways in the state will begin from October 23 and will be completed in the next two weeks.
The confirmation came week after Shriomani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal wrote to Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari seeking the primacy of Punjabi language on signboards on national highway in the state as the “current treatment meted out to the language has not only hurt the sentiments of the people but was also causing inconvenience.”
He said that all signboards on national highways should have signs in Punjabi, Hindi and English in descending order. “I request you to give requisite directions to correct this anomaly immediately,” Badal wrote to Gadkari.
“The work on changing sequence of languages on signboards on Amritsar-Bathinda stretch of the National Highway will start from Monday and will be completed within a fortnight,” AK Singla, chief engineer, PWD (National Highways) said.
Irked at the practice of preferring Hindi and English over Punjabi, the members of All India Sikh Students Federation and Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) had blackened these signboards as a mark of protest.
Several people involved in blackening the signboards, especially in Bathinda area, were also booked on the charge of damaging the government property.
Malwa Youth Federation had also registered their displeasure with the earlier practice.