The Union Minister of State (I/C) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), Dr. Jitendra Singh made an emphatic assertion that the growth of India is linked to the growth of Hindi and just as in the next few years, India grows economically as a world power, its equivalent growth on cultural and civilizational scale would be closely proportionate to the extent of growth of Hindi not only as a language but as an important symbol of India’s identity. He was delivering keynote address as chief guest in a function held to commemorate Hindi Fortnight and 12th Hindi Day Felicitation Awards, here yesterday.
Dr. Jitendra Singh said, it would be a gross error fraught with long term implications if an impression is allowed to perpetuate that Hindi is confined only to a particular section of society or religion or region as a medium of communication. The truth, on the other hand, is that Hindi is a part of legacy of every such individual who has inherited the legacy of Hindustan irrespective of religion, caste, sect or region. Citing illustrious examples, he said, some of the best literature and poetry in Hindi, for instance, was written by Muslim poets and writers even though their mother tongue may not have been Hindi.
It is a strange paradox, Dr. Jitendra Singh said, that living in India and being Indians, we need to observe a “Hindi fortnight” or a “Hindi Divas” to remind ourselves about Hindi and its richness. He said, it sounds strange when one thinks that people living in Britain do not have to observe an English language day to remind themselves of the importance of English language or people living in France do not observe a French language day. Therefore, the real question that we should ask ourselves is whether we have failed to cultivate in ourselves the esteem of the heritage of Hindi language and the pride of speaking Hindi, he said.
Sounding a cryptic note, Dr. Jitendra Singh said, he has come across a number of parents who are themselves scholars in Hindi language but prefer to send their children to English schools and take pride in their children communicating in English rather than in Hindi. Is this a matter of some subconscious complex within or a confusion of contradictions within… this is an issue that requires to be seriously introspected and analysed, he added.
Concluding on an optimistic note, Dr. Jitendra Singh said, the day is not far when India will become an international power and then, Hindi will not only be a national language but will be an international language.
Although, Minister has strongly advocated for the promotion of Hindi, One may not forget, anti-Hindi movement in the past in several regions. Thus it remains to be seen, how initiatives to identify Hindi as India’s identity will affect multi-lingual Indian society.