Raipur, Nov 27 (UNI) The BJP government in Chhattisgarh today introduced in the Vidhan Sabha the Official Language (Amednement) Bill 2007, which aims to grant official language status to local dialect 'Chhattisgarhi' in the state.
Introducing the bill, Minister for Culture Brijmohan Agrawal said it was aimed at fulfilling the aspirations of common masses by giving official language status to Chhattisgarhi.
''Once the bill is passed, people will be able to use 'Chhattisgarhi' for official purposes, along with Hindi'', he added.
However, opposition Congress members felt that the state government should have brought a new bill to grant official language status to 'Chhattisgarhi' instead of proposing an amendment.
Mr Ravindra Choubey (Congress) pointed out that the amendment bill stated 'Chhattisgarhi' as an additional language along with Hindi. ''This is an insult to Chhattisgarhi'', he said but clarified that the members had no disrespect towards Hindi. He said the Vidhan Sabha had on earlier occasions adopted non-official resolutions, demanding official language status to Chhattisgarhi.
Mr Bhupesh Baghel (Congress), while welcoming the move, urged the state government to introduce a 'full-fledged'' bill for the purpose.
Speaker Prem Prakash Pandey said the members could raise such matters during the debate on the bill.
Later the Speaker said today was a historic day for Chhattisgarh Vidhan Sabha as arrangements had been made for translation of debate from Hindi to Chhattisgarhi and vice-versa. He said the rules provided for conducting the proceedings in Hindi and hence it had been relaxed so as to permit the members to either speak in Hindi or Chhattisgarhi in the house.
Mr Pandey said two band channel have been provided for the members as well as in the press gallery.