Siddaramaiah flags CM's English schools plan

Another divide?

Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Siddaramaiah on Thursday strongly opposed Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy’s ambitious move to offer English education in 1,000 government schools, signalling yet another divide between him and the JD(S)-led coalition on governance issues.

“Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy has said that 1,000 English-medium schools will be started in the state from the next academic year. I will discuss this with him,” Siddaramaiah tweeted. “We must have clarity on learning Kannada as a language and Kannada as a medium of education. Kannada was the medium in which I studied till high school. Am I stupid? Kannada should remain the supreme language in Karnataka,” he said.

Before tweeting this, Siddaramaiah spoke on similar lines at a Kannada Pustaka Pradhikara event in Badami. Siddaramaiah’s opposition was his reaction to Kannada Development Authority chairperson S G Siddaramaiah’s criticism of the government on the issue.

Kumaraswamy’s plan to introduce English education in government schools goes against his coalition partner Congress’ stand.

The previous Siddaramaiah-led regime made Kannada learning compulsory through a law after Karnataka lost a two-decades-old legal battle in the Supreme Court on making Kannada the medium of instruction. Siddaramaiah had introduced English in government schools, but only as a subject. It was in his July 5 budget that Kumaraswamy announced starting English education in 1,000 government schools.

Siddaramaiah was against Kumaraswamy even announcing a fresh budget. After the budget, Siddaramaiah publicly opposed Kumaraswamy’s move to hike fuel prices and cut supply of rice under the Anna Bhagya scheme from 7 kg to 5 kg.

A host of Kannada writers and intellectuals, including Jnanpith awardee Chandrashekhar Kambar, critic Chandrashekhar Patil (Champa), Dalit poet Siddalingaiah, Kannada Sahitya Parishat president Manu Baligar, scholar M Chidananda Murthy and freedom fighter H S Doreswamy have opposed Kumaraswamy’s move. They argue that offering English was an “anti-Kannada” move that could “kill Kannada in elementary education”.

Kumaraswamy, however, has repeatedly justified the move saying English would encourage parents to send their children to government schools, thereby improving enrolment.

Liked the story?

  • 0

    Happy
  • 1

    Amused
  • 0

    Sad
  • 0

    Frustrated
  • 0

    Angry

Comments:

Siddaramaiah flags CM's English schools plan

0 comments

Write the first review for this !