"Can't move ahead without Hindi in India," says Venkaiah Naidu amid anti-Hindi protests
When half the nation is agitating over Hindi imposition in non-Hindi speaking belts, Union Minister and senior BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu added fuel to the fire by calling Hindi 'Rashtrabhasha'. His statements come at a time when regional parties and regional outfits have been accusing the BJP of forcing Hindi on the non-Hindi speaking population of the country.
"Hindi is our National Language. It is impossible to move ahead in India without Hindi. Our national language is our identity and we should be proud of it," he said on Saturday. His comments are only egging further agitations against the imposition of Hindi. Political parties like the DMK, JD(S) have vehemently opposed the centre's attempts to introduce Hindi in various forms. DMK's M K Stalin had threatened to begin an anti-Hindi agitation after milestones marked in Hindi were seen on Tamil Nadu highways.
In Bengaluru, anti-Hindi imposition protests are taking place over Hindi being used as a language in Namma Metro sign boards. On Friday External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj announced that Indian passports will now be issued in English as well as Hindi. The move was yet again viewed as a casual imposition of Hindi on the non-Hindi speaking population of the country. The BJP has increasingly come under fire for attempting to push Hindi through various channels.