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Telangana govt makes Telugu compulsory for students till Class 12

Official sources say it is mandatory for all schools and colleges to have Telugu as a compulsory subject in their curriculum. The government has also decided to instruct all organisations to display their signboards in Telugu too.

telangana Updated: Sep 14, 2017 18:24 IST
Srinivasa Rao Apparasu
Srinivasa Rao Apparasu
Hindustan Times, Hyderabad
Telangana chief minister asked the Telugu Sahitya Academy to prepare a syllabus that all schools and colleges will have to follow.(Rishikesh Choudhary/HT File Photo)

The Telangana government has instructed all educational institutions, private and public, to teach students from Class 1 to Class 12 Telugu as one of their subjects compulsorily from the next academic year.

The decision was taken at a high-level official meeting conducted by chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao a couple of days ago.

According to official sources, it is now mandatory for all schools and colleges affiliated to the state educational board, irrespective of their medium of instruction, to have Telugu as a compulsory subject in their curriculum.

“Only such schools would get the recognition from the government and permissions for the establishment of new schools would be given only if they include Telugu as one of the main subjects,” sources said.

The chief minister asked the Telugu Sahitya Academy to prepare a syllabus and all schools and colleges will have to follow only the prescribed syllabus.

A Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader on Thursday said the sudden decision of the Telangana government smacked of political overtones and could have been taken to “stall the growth” of the saffron outfit.

“This could be part of the strategy to counter the expansion of the BJP into the southern state by creating apprehensions among the people that Hindi would be thrust upon them if it comes to power,” the leader said on the condition of anonymity.

“By raking up the Telugu language sentiment, as happened in other southern states like Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, where there is a strong language chauvinism, the TRS government may be planning to stall the growth of the BJP,” he added.

The government has also decided to ask all the public and private establishments and institutions in the state to display their organisation’s names in Telugu on their signboards.

“Both the decisions would be ratified at the next Cabinet meeting,” official sources said.

Dakshin Bharat Hindi Prachar Sabha convenor P Srinivas Rao said there was no need for any apprehensions about the forcible implementation of Hindi in the south.

“While there is nothing wrong in promoting Telugu in a big way, the government should not oppose Hindi, which is a national language,” Rao told the Hindustan Times.

Sahitya Academy chairperson Nandini Siddha Reddy, however, brushed aside the allegations.

“There is no politics nor is there any language chauvinism in the latest decision. The chief minister has taken the decision only to protect the Telugu language, which is on the verge of extinction as the present generations, in their craze for English education, are forgetting their mother tongue,” he said.

Reddy said it was mandatory for every official, including civil servants, to pass the Telugu language test to be conducted by the Public Service Commission, since they cannot deal with the people without knowing their language.

“Only if they pass the test, their jobs would be regularised,” Reddy said.

As part of promoting Telugu, the CM has also announced that a World Telugu Conference will be held in Hyderabad for five days from December 15 to 19. He said Rs 50 crore will be sanctioned for organising the conference and the Sahitya Academy will be its nodal agency.

“The conference will discuss how the Telugu language is preserved, protected, enriched in the Telangana region,” Reddy added.

First Published: Sep 14, 2017 18:13 IST