- Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
Hindi to help unite the country
What to study?
For Prelims: Constitutional provisions in this regard.
For Mains: Should Hindi be made the common language, need for, concerns and challenges ahead?
Context: During an event associated with the Hindi Divas, the Union Home Minister said that Hindi is the only language that can unify the country and the language needs to be promoted.
Why he said so?
- It is important to have a language of the whole country which should become the identity of India globally. Hindi can unite the country since it is the most spoken language.
- There is a huge influence of English on the citizens of India. Loss of languages due to foreign influence is a cultural issue. A language can survive only if the new generation feels proud in speaking it. Hence, Hindi should be promoted.
Why this may not be a good idea?
India is a country of unity in diversity and has never banked on one language for its existence.
- According to Census-2011, only 60% of total Hindi-speakers speak the native Hindi dialect. Only 26% have native Hindi as their mother tongue.
- The people of non-Hindi speaking states fear that the plan to promote Hindi might make them secondary citizens and undermine the country’s integrity.
According to Article-343, Hindi (in Devanagari script) is the official language of the Union.
Under Article-351, it is the duty of the Union to encourage the spread of the Hindi language so that it may serve as a medium of communication.
India is a nation of many cultures and traditions and home to a heterogeneous people speaking many languages and their dialects. Their cultural identities are not to be submerged in this overtly political move to promote Hindi as a national language.
Sources: the Hindu.