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Violent protests over English language

india Updated: Jun 06, 2011 10:34 IST

PTI
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Road traffic has been paralysed in Goa since morning, as protesters have descended on roads to enforce the 'Goa bandh' over state government's decision to grant recognition to English as a Medium of Instruction (MOI) in the primary schools.

Goa government recently decided to recognise English as an MOI, alongwith Marathi and Konkani, and to give grants to English-medium schools.

But the decision has led to howls of protest, with the fear that it would undercut the vernacular-medium schools.

Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM) has given a call for strike on Monday, which is supported by BJP, Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), and Shiv Sena.

It is also backed by 67 institutions across the state.

Since morning, no buses could ply on the inter-city routes. A few buses were seen on city roads here, with a few passengers.

Most schools remained closed, though on Monday was the first day of the current academic year.

In the schools which opened, teachers could not reach on time, and very few students turned up.

Police sources stated that two buses of government-run Kadamba Transport Corporation Limited (KTCL) were stoned in Margao and Bicholim towns.

Another two buses, carrying school children, were also attacked by the protesters. "The students were made to get down and the buses were smashed up," an eye witness said.

The students were later taken back to their homes by by the agitators themselves.

A few KTCL buses, though half-empty, managed to ply under police protection on the inter-city routes.

In Panaji, the parents were seen standing outside some schools, to ensure that agitators do not close the schools forcibly.