By The Editor
On the first day of the Budget session on Monday, March 20 in protest against Governor Phagu Chauhan addressing the House in Hindi, VPP (Voice of the People Party) president and Nongkrem MLA Ardent Miller Basaiawmoit stood up and expressed uneasiness saying that Meghalaya is not a Hindi-speaking state. Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma immediately intervened justifying that due to limitation the Governor had chosen the language he was comfortable in and reasoned that the English version had already been circulated to all members of the House. The intention of the Governor was not to hurt the sentiments of the members . Feeling not happy and satisfied at all over the excuses the four VPP members walked out of the House in the middle of the Governor’s address. Cabinet minister and UDP (United Democratic Party) legislator Paul Lyngdoh preferred an address understood by all. Another Cabinet Minister and NPP (National People’s Party) legislator Mazel Ampareen Lyngdoh stated that the Centre should be aware about people of Meghalaya not understanding Hindi. Dr. Mukul Sangma of the TMC (Trinamool Congress) said the walkout was an expression of sentiments which must be acknowledged given the linguistic diversity of the nation.
Language is a very sensitive issue and people can get much heated and excited at any hint of feeling slighted and insulted either in talking or even gesturing which may escalate further. It is immaterial whether one belongs to majority or minority community and one ought to bear in mind that mutual respect carries much weightage in society failing which there is high possibility of peril in future.Wars and battles have been fought over language issues when majority communities tried to force their views and opinions on others which thus serve as examples never to be ignored. States in India have been formed mostly on the basis of language and the State Reorganization Commission (SRC) was accordingly constituted in late 1950s by Government of India after the country gained independence in 1947.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah addressing the graduating students of the Maharaja Sayajirao University at its 71st convocation on March 18 told the youth never to abandon their mother tongue. He reiterated that they may do whatever they like in life but never to forget their mother tongue nor feel inferior. One who thinks deeply and ponders in his or her research works in one’s mother languages the capacity for logic and decision-making increases thus leading to success and glory.He further added that one’s mother tongue is the best medium for personality development. For this reason, Shah reminded that Prime Minister Narendra Modi thought of making mother tongue compulsory in primary education under the New Education Policy (NEP) which will clear their concepts about the values of education.