BENGALURU: Opposition party leaders from Karnataka are standing in solidarity with Tamil Nadu MP and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader MK Kanimozhi over the Hindi issue. Kanimozhi on Sunday had alleged that a CISF official asked her if “she was an Indian” as she could not speak Hindi, while the paramilitary force ordered an inquiry asserting that it is not its policy to insist upon any particular language.
Former Chief Minister and JDS Legislature Party Chief HD Kumaraswamy on Monday went all guns blazing against what he termed the imposition of Hindi on non-Hindi speaking population and the politics around it. In a statement, Kumarasamy said that many prominent politicians from South India had been denied opportunities due to the ‘Hindi politics’.
“Now, it is apt to debate how political leaders from the South were snatched of their opportunities by Hindi politics and discrimination. Hindi politics has prevented many South Indians from becoming PM – Deve Gowda, Karunanidhi and Kamaraj are prominent (SIC). Though Deve Gowda was successful in breaking this barrier, there were several incidents of him being criticised and ridiculed for reasons of language,” he said.
He also noted that Deve Gowda had been forced to deliver his Independence Day speech in Hindi for the sake of farmers from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh and shared his own experiences as Member of Parliament.
“The ruling class ignores the South with disdain. I have seen from close quarters on how Hindi politicians manoeuvre. Most of them don’t respect non-Hindi politicians,” he said and added that the disdain continues in public sector jobs as well where candidates are compelled to write entrance exams in either English or Hindi with no option of mother tongue.
Congress leaders like Jayanagar MLA Sowmya Reddy too showed solidarity with Kanimozhi and demanded that Hindi should not be imposed on non-Hindi speaking citizens.