Accord classical language status to Kannada: Poojari urges PM

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New Delhi, Jan 4 (UNI) Senior Congress leader and Rajya Sabha MP B Janardhana Poojari today urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to redress the grievances of the people of Karnataka demanding classical language status to Kannada expeditiously to assuage the popular feeling that the language had been given a ''step motherly treatment''.

In letters to Dr Singh, Home Minister Shivraj Patil and Culture Minister Ambika Soni, Mr Poojari said the language, which had recorded history for about 1500 to 2000 years, met all the parameters for according 'classical language' status and and even UNESCO had regarded the Kannada script among the prime scripts of the world, besides the langauge ranked among the top ten living languages, along with Hebrew, Chinese and Tamil.

However, the Centre had granted the 'classical language' status only to Tamil and Sanskrit and no other language had been identified for according this status.

The delay in according Kannada the status had resulted in people getting restless and the agitations were turning violent.

Senior Congress leaders like Oscar Fernandes and M Veerappa Moily were gheraoed by agitators and even a nonagenarian former Vice Chencellor had announced a fast unto death if the demand was not met.

''I request you to arrange recognising Kannada as a 'classical language' expeditiously,'' Mr Poojari added.

UNI MCN KD RK1538

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