Row over Sanskrit language; HC asks KVS to respond to PIL

The Delhi High Court asked Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan to file its response to a PIL seeking quashing of its notifications to introduce foreign languages in place of Sanskrit as third language in classes VI to VIII from academic session 2011-12.

PTI| Last Updated: Jul 09, 2014, 19:48 PM IST

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan (KVS) to file its response to a PIL seeking quashing of its notifications to introduce foreign languages in place of Sanskrit as third language in classes VI to VIII from academic session 2011-12.

"File your (KVS) counter (affidavit) or ask your Commissioner to appear in person before the court if the reply is not filed," a bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw said.

The bench, which listed the matter for August 6, was hearing the plea filed by Sanskrit Shikshak Sangh through its president Dheerendra Kumar Jha.

The PIL challenges the decision of KVS to introduce foreign languages like German, French, Chinese and Spanish in place of Sanskrit as third language from the academic session 2011-12 in classes VI to VIII.
The petition, filed through lawyer Monika Arora, said that the notifications are against the fundamental rights of the citizens and Sanskrit teachers have been asked by KVS to take training in these foreign languages, so that they may teach these languages in due course in place of Sanskrit.

"Issue a writ in the nature of mandamus directing the respondents to take effective measures for promotion and education of Sanskrit as provided in National Curriculum Framework for School Education," it said.

"The action of the respondents (KVS and CBSE) would cause irreparable damage to Sanskrit language and Indian culture and as a result, the next generation would not learn Sanskrit and hardly have any knowledge of Sanskrit and the rich ancient Indian culture.”

"This is also in violation of the various provisions of the Constitution of India as also violation of the various Supreme Court judgements," the plea said.
The training of KVS teachers to make them "proficient in teaching German" would be restricted to Sanskrit teachers only, it said.

"Foreign languages viz. German, French, Spanish, Russian and Chinese language are being promoted at the cost of Sanskrit," it said.