Bengaluru: Taking his advocacy of Kannada nationalism to a new level, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Wednesday said that anyone who lives in the state must know Kannada.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah made these remarks while addressing a gathering at the 62nd Karnataka Rajyotsava in the state capital.
All schools in the state must teach Kannada, the Chief Minister said.
“Everyone who lives here is a Kannadiga. Whoever lives in Karnataka should learn Kannada and make their children learn it too,” Siddaramaiah said.
The Congress leader, however, said that he is not against any particular community or language.
“I am not against learning any language. But if you don’t learn Kannada, it means you’re showing disrespect to the language,” he added.
Siddaramaiah also asked Kannadigas to be more affectionate towards their state’s language.
Siddaramaiah had earlier said that any attack on Kannada will not be tolerated.
Earlier in September, Siddaramaiah had also written to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley asking him to direct Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS) to amend language proficiency clause.
In his letter, Siddaramaiah said candidates with proficiency in local language should be given preference in selection of Bank Officers and Office Assistants in Karnataka.
The Chief Minister had said the selected candidates must know the local language Kannada to communicate with people in rural areas.
Earlier this year, he had also said that Hindi cannot be imposed on all and is not the national language of the country.
“Hindi cannot be imposed; you must leave it to people to learn it. Hindi is not and cannot be the national language. It is just one of the languages of the country. I am not opposing learning of any language, be it Hindi, Tamil or even foreign languages; only thing is, do not impose it,” Siddaramiah had said.
Focusing on preservation of Kannada language, the Chief Minister called for efforts towards creating an atmosphere for learning Kannada at all educational institutions across the state.
The CM also made a point by saying that Karnataka did not succeed in making Kannada a priority in the last 60 years.