CHENNAI: There was furore in the Tamil Nadu Assembly on Monday over the Department of Posts conducting the examination for group D category in Hindi and English, dispensing with the regional languages. And in the midst of heated arguments between Treasury and Opposition members, Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami jibed at the DMK demanding it to direct its 37 Lok Sabha members from Tamil Nadu to raise their voice in the Parliament.
The DMK made a vain bid to force the AIADMK government to adopt Assembly resolution condemning the Centre on the issue. However, the State government asserted that it is firm on its stand of implementing two language policy of Tamil and English, in Tamil Nadu and that it will not accept the imposition of Hindi in any form. Maintaining that the government’s stance on Hindi imposition, especially in the wake of the Department of Posts conducting examination in Hindi and English on Sunday, was the same as that of the opposition parties, Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam said the AIADMK government will decide on the next course of action based on the Centre’s reply when AIADMK members raise the issue in the Parliament on Tuesday.
Raising the issue after Question Hour, DMK member Thangam Thennarasu alleged the Centre’s act of amending rules to hold the exam only in Hindi and English was to avoid those from southern States from joining Central government services. This amounted to snatching the rights of Tamil people and went against the principle of national integrity, he said.
Responding, fisheries minister D. Jayakumar said both the AIADMK and the DMK were “sailing in the same boat” so far as this issue was concerned and said the State government would urge the Centre to revert to holding the Postal Department examinations in the respective regional languages.
DMK deputy leader Duraimurugan remarked that Hindi “imposition” was indeed the issue and sought a resolution be adopted in the House to urge the Centre to drop it.
Replying, Mr Panneerselvam, who is also the Leader of the House, said since everyone was of the same view over the subject, the AIADMK MPs will raise the issue in the Parliament on Tuesday.
“Depending upon the reply from the Centre, we can form a consensus and act accordingly,” he added.
Contending that the State government could come to a clear decision only after the Centre responds to issue in the Parliament, Mr. Palaniswami said the DMK members appear to make a commotion over the language issue with the intention of staging a walk out. “We have more concern for Tamil than you do. People sent our members to the Parliament to voice their concerns. In the past you (DMK) had asked us (AIADMK) what we had done despite having 37 MPs in the Lok Sabha. Now I ask you the same question. People elected your party members and sent 37 of them to the Lok Sabha to resolve their issues. Why don't you raise it in Parliament? We too will raise the issue,” Mr. Palaniswami jibed.
Duraimurugan, however, said the Chief Minister's remark that they had come to House with an intention to walk out, trivialised their sentiments and led a walk out of party MLAs. Allies, Congress and the lone Indian Union Muslim League member too walked out of the House.
Law Minister C. Ve. Shanmugam wondered why the DMK members could not wait for a day to decide on the issue, and said there was no need to rush through the matter as the Madras High Court's Madurai Bench had granted an injunction against announcing results by the Centre. Accusing the DMK of lacking concern for people, he said, DMK's intention was only to force the State government to pass a resolution against the Centre whether it was NEET, hydrocarbon or high court verdict and now the language row. “Your plan to instigate us against Centre will not work. Amma's AIADMK government will complete its full term,” Mr. Shanmugam said.