The Tamil Nadu government rejected the Centre’s three language system proposed in the National Education Policy, asserting that there will be no deviation from the state’s decades-old two-language formula of Tamil and English.
The NEP, passed by the Union cabinet last week, said the mother tongue/local and regional language will now be the medium of instruction till at least Class V, and preferably beyond Class VIII. Also, Sanskrit will be offered at all levels of school and higher education as an option for students, including in the three-language formula.
The proposal was met with resistance in Tamil Nadu, with DMK chief and Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly MK Stalin dubbing it as an attempt to “impose” Hindi and Sanskrit on non-Hindi-speaking states. The ruling AIADMK’s ally, the Pattali Makkal Katchi, too, had called the three-language system unacceptable.
The anti-Hindi movement of the 1960s, led by the DMK, had struck a chord among the people of TN and is believed to have contributed to the Dravidian party’s stellar win in the 1967 election under the Annadurai, unseating a Congress government in the state for the first time in post-Independent India. Former CMs MG Ramachandran and J Jayalalithaa were also firmly against the “imposition” of Hindi.