Chennai: Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram and MDMK general secretary Vaiko have come to the support of DMK Lok Sabha member Kanimozhi, who had alleged that she faced language bias at an airport where a Central Industrial Security Forces (CISF) officer asked her if she is an Indian because she did not know Hndi.
“Today at the airport a CISF officer asked me if ‘I am an Indian’ when I asked her to speak to me in tamil or English as I did not know Hindi. I would like to know from when being indian is equal to knowing Hindi,” tweeted Kanimozhi.
Chidambaram today said that such ‘unpleasant experience’ is not unusual. “I have experienced similar taunts from government officers and ordinary citizens who insisted that I speak in Hindi during telephone conversations and sometimes face to face,” he said.
He added that if the Central government is genuinely committed to both English and Hindi being the official languages of India, it must insisit that all government employees are bilingual in Hindi and English.
“Non-Hindi speaking recruits to central government posts quickly learn functional, spoken Hindi. Why cannot Hindi speaking recruits to central government posts learn functional, spoken English?,” he said.
Vaiko said Hindi imposition in any form is strongly condemnable. Meanwhile, the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) has sought details of the incident from Kanimozhi.
“Warm greetings from @CISFHQrs. We sincerely acknowledge your unpleasant experience. Kindly DM journey details; name of airport, location, date, and time of the incident for appropriate action in the matter (sic),” the CISF tweeted.