Amid row over the three-language norm, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami has asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to include Tamil as an optional language for studies in other states of the country.
Taking to Twitter, Palaniswami said that the Tamil language should be made an option in states other than Tamil Nadu. "Request Hon'ble PM @narendramodi ji to include Tamil as an optional language for study in other states. This will be a great service to one of the most ancient languages of the world," he wrote.
Palaniswami's tweet and the request in it come at a time when a number of states in southern India have protested against what is regarded there as a forceful imposition of the Hindi language under the three-language norm. The norm essentially refers to a proposal for teaching Hindi in non-Hindi speaking states but the Central government has said that no decision has been made in this regard. "No decision has been taken by the Central government as far as the issue of the three-language norm is concerned. It is not fair to cast aspersions on the government for political purposes," Union Chemicals and Fertilizers Minister Sadananda Gowda was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Nonetheless, a number of political leaders from states like Karnataka and Tamil Nadu have come slammed the proposal. Former Karnataka CM and Congress leader Siddaramaih said that imposition of Hindi would be a brutal assault. DMK chief MK Stalin said that the central government is attempting to deceive on the issue. He also said that Palaniswami should make his stand clear in the matter. Palaniswami, however, chose to make a case for Tamil language being taught as an option in non-Tamil speaking states rather than break his silence on the 'imposition' of Hindi. His party - AIADMK - fought the recent Lok Sabha election 2019 under the NDA umbrella.