CHANDIGARH: The Punjab government is all set to amend the Punjab Official Language Act, 1967 making Punjabi the first language of the state. The directive will extend to government departments and private companies. First preference will be given to Punjabi, followed by Hindi and then English.
All signboards and name plates will also be in Gurmukhi. Action will be taken against an individual or institution that violates this.
Sources said that the state languages minister Tripat Rajinder Singh Bajwa has given directions to the officers of the department to formulate a draft policy within thirty days so that the Punjab Official Language Act, 1967 can be amended.
Officers of the department will now study the acts of the five other states in the country which have made their mother tongue compulsory in the day-to-day working of government departments. It is learnt that not only the state government departments but also the central government offices in the state will have to abide by the directive.
A few months ago Punjab School Education Department had written to both CBSE and ICSE boards to make Punjabi as a compulsory subject from classes 1 to 10 in all schools in the state.
It stated that no board or institutions shall issue matriculation certificates unless a student passes Punjabi in class X examinations.