The Central Industrial Security Force on Sunday ordered an investigation after Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader Kanimozhi alleged that one of its officers, at an airport in Tamil Nadu, asked her if she was Indian because she wanted him to address her in Tamil or English, as she did not know Hindi.
“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,” Kanimozhi tweeted. “I would like to know from when being Indian is equal to knowing Hindi.” She used the hashtag #hindiimposition to buttress her point.
Congress MPs Manickam Tagore and Karti Chidambaram backed Kanimozhi, NDTV reported. “Outright ridiculous. Highly condemnable,” Chidambaram tweeted. “A linguistic test , what next? @CISFHQrs should respond!”
Kanimozhi told News18 that nobody has any right to question her Indianness. She also accused the Bharatiya Janata Party of making Hindi a political matter. “I am as much Indian as anybody else,” she said. “They are running an agenda to impose Hindi, including in the new National Education Policy.”
The CISF later approached Kanimozhi. It said: “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.” In the evening, the force ordered an inquiry into the incident.
On August 1, DMK chief MK Stalin said the Centre’s New Education Policy was an attempt to impose Hindi and Sanskrit languages on the entire country. Under the New Education Policy, the Centre has proposed that education up to Class 5, and preferably until Class 8, will be imparted in the mother tongues of students. Classical languages like Sanskrit have also been proposed at all levels, while foreign languages will be offered at the secondary level.
But Stalin said he will fight against the changes by joining hands with like-minded political parties and chief ministers of other states.