Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma on Tuesday praised Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s efforts to make Hindi a compulsory subject in northeastern states, while adding that There should also be more emphasis on promoting local languages. “I have seen the benefit of learning Hindi and English. I see no reason why learning a new language, whether Hindi, English or Japanese, is a bad thing” , said the CM.
Stating that learning a language is something that gives accessibility, Sangma said, “…when it comes to the global job market, English is very important, so you have to be professional in English. But when it comes to the national level, we have to realize that Hindi is the most widely spoken language in the whole country, so it adds an advantage for our young people to be able to learn a new language like Hindi as well.
However, he denied having received written instructions on this subject from the Centre.
Last Thursday, Shah, while chairing the 37th meeting of the Parliamentary Official Languages Committee, said that Hindi should be accepted as an alternative language to English, but not local languages.
Shah had said that the nine northeast tribal communities had converted the scripts of their dialects to Devanagari while the eight northeast states had agreed to make Hindi compulsory in schools up to grade 10. students up to grade 9 and pay more attention to Hindi teaching exams,” the Union Home Secretary had said at the meeting.
CM Sangma said, “…what I would like to do and see is that even though the Indian government can make this suggestion and the recommendations, we should also lobby from the Indian government for there to be research or learning institutes for our local languages too.
“So, therefore, there must also be more emphasis on local languages…research must be done, documentation must be done and funds must be granted by the central government to set up institutes of promotion of local languages,” he added.
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