Classical language status for Marathi: Maha CM to PM

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. (PTI Photo)

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding the classical language status for Marathi.

Currently, Tamil, Sanskrit, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam and Odia have been given the status of classical languages.

In an official communication from the Maharashtra government, Thackeray said, "The state government-appointed expert committee on this issue had submitted its report on November 16, 2013, to the Centre."

The Marathi language fulfils the criteria to obtain the status of classical language but the issue is pending before the Centre's department for culture.

In the letter, Thackeray said the issue has been pending for a long time and asked the PM to look into it personally.

The criteria for bestowing classical language status includes high antiquity of its early texts and recorded history over a period of 1500-2000 years, a body of ancient literature and texts, which is considered a valuable heritage by generations of speakers, among others.

Thackeray's party Shiv Sena often projects itself as the protector of the Marathi culture with its son-of-the-soil agenda.

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