Activists mask Hindi signage at Metro stations

Activists mask Hindi signage at Metro stations
The protest against use of Hindi in Namma Metro intensified on Thursday with Karnataka Rakshana Vedike (KRV) members blackening Hindi letters on signboards in several Metro stations in the early morning and staging flash protests.

BMRCL staff were taken aback as KRV members formed separate groups and went about 40 different Metro stations at 4 am.

They blacked the part of signboards containing Hindi letters and sat on a dharna in front of some Metro stations, holding placards and shouting anti-Hindi slogans.

Police detained about 25 KRV members who staged a flash protest at Rajajinagar Metro station.  Protesters attempted to enter MG Road station but were taken into police custody.

A senior police officer said that a similar protest was held at Mysuru Road, KR Market and other Metro stations where KRV members sprayed black paint on the Hindi signageboards.

Jayanagar, Rajajinagar, Halasuru, Yeshwantpur, Chickpete, Peenya, Deepanjali Nagar and KR Market were among the stations that got the ink.

The protest against “imposition” of Hindi has been raging over the past few weeks. Activists say the Centre was forcing the language on Kannadigas. They fear that Kannada will be eventually forced out due to the "hegemony" of Hindi , as it has been done in banks, where stationery is now provided only in Hindi and English.

According to an eyewitness, “Around 2.30 am, about 10 activists approached the MG Road station holding placards and banners. Policemen on duty took them into custody and foiled their attempt.”

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