No leave in this AIIMS if request not signed in Hindi

The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Rishikesh, about 500 kilometres from here, issued a directive to this effect a few days back. (Photo credit: Google Maps)

Within months after the controversy triggered by union home minister Amit Shah's remarks on Hindi as the national language, a prestigious central medical institution in the hill state of Uttarakhand has made it mandatory for its faculty members to sign their leave applications in Hindi only lest they should not be granted leave.

The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Rishikesh, about 500 kilometres from here, issued a directive to this effect a few days back.

The order, signed in Hindi by Prof Manoj Gupta, the Dean, Academics, at the Institute, said that applications with English signature would not be accepted.

''All faculty members are informed that all leave applications must be signed in Hindi only...forwarding authority should also sign in Hindi only,'' the order said.

While the order triggered resentment among the 'non-Hindi' speaking faculty members at the Institute, Prof Gupta defended the same saying that it had been done to ''promote'' the Hindi language among the faculty members at AIIMS, Rishikesh.

The Institute officials said that as per the central government rules, all the employees should have knowledge of Hindi.

According to the sources, the non-Hindi speaking faculty members of AIIMS planned to take up the matter with the higher authorities. Till then they (non-Hindi speaking staff) may have to learn to scribble something in Hindi.

Shah, on September 14 (National Hindi Day) , had stirred a controversy when he had remarked that Hindi language had the ability to bind the country together. He had, however, clarified after a backlash that he was not in favour of imposing Hindi on anyone.

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