Senior Congress MP K C Venugopal today said MPs from many non-Hindi speaking states face difficulties due to “unilateral usage of Hindi” in official correspondence from various Central Ministries. Venugopal, a former Union Minster, said he had written to Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, requesting her to take necessary steps to “avoid single use” of Hindi in official correspondence from Ministries and to ensure his “privilege” to know the policies and programmes of the government. The Alappuzha MP said the “imposition of Hindi” in all official correspondence without supplementing in English, the official language which is understood by all, was “against the concept of pluralism and federalism” upheld by the Constitution also.
A similar letter had been sent to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he said. In his letter, Venugopal referred to a communication he had received from union rural development minister Narendra Singh Tomar, regarding “New India Manthan” dated August 11, written in Hindi. The MP, who is AICC general secretary in-charge of Karnataka, said the letter written in Hindi was “not comprehensive” to him and the policies and directions mentioned in the letter were not conveyed to him “in true sense” since it was not supplemented in English. “Popularising Hindi is a welcome move but that cannot be imposed by denying the right to know official correspondence, in a language understood by all,” he said in the letter.He said on many occasions the ministerial level replies were received in Hindi, making it difficult to understand. Venugopal said at times he had received replies from various ministries in Hindi alone despite the fact that the letters were addressed to the former in English.