Karnataka to protest against imposition of Hindi: Siddaramaiah

Karnataka to protest against imposition of Hindi: Siddaramaiah

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Wednesday said Karnataka would lodge a protest with the Centre on imposition of Hindi in non-Hindi speaking states.

Responding to growing protests against “imposition” of Hindi in Bengaluru Metro, the chief minister said, "The Karnataka government will not tolerate imposition of Hindi. Hindi is being used in Metro rail citing the three-language formula. Metro is not a central government project. The major funding is by the state government.”

“Just because Hindi is spoken in several north Indian states, it should not be seen as a language which is spoken across the country,” he told reporters here. Criticising Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu's recent statement that everyone in the country should learn Hindi, the chief minister said, “This is not acceptable.”

The chief minister, who was present when the joint Opposition presidential candidate Meira Kumar filed her nomination, also said he would apprise the Centre of increasing opposition to imposition of Hindi in non-Hindi speaking states.

On the issue of sentencing two journalists by the Karnataka Assembly in Bengaluru, the chief minister said, “Though it was a decision of the Speaker, I have instructed the police not to arrest journalist Ravi Belagere due to his ill health.”

However, Siddaramaiah refused to comment on Pejawar Mutt seer Vishwesha Theertha Swami holding an Iftar at Krishna temple in Udupi.

Meanwhile, the chief minister met Congress president Sonia Gandhi and invited her to chair an international seminar planned by the state government on the 125 birth anniversary of B R Ambedkar at Bengaluru.

The chief minister also clarified that he did not discuss the expansion of his Cabinet with Sonia. He said he would visit Delhi again later to discuss the issue with Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, who is now out of the country.

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