#StopHindiChauvinism: Netizens protest as Hindi replaces English on Tamil Nadu milestones

by Trends Desk | Kolkata | Published: Wednesday, April 05, 2017

Not just people from Tamil Nadu, others too have joined the protest to fight for their mother tongue.

India is a land of diversity with many ethnicities and languages, and debate regarding country’s official language is something that keeps coming back to haunt us all. Currently, another controversy with Hindi started brewing after English signs on milestones in Tamil Nadu were replaced by Hindi. According to reports, on border districts of the states, the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) has “been quietly erasing English names from the milestones for the past few months, replacing it with Hindi script.”

The move has left many truck drivers, patients travelling for treatments, travellers from non-Hindi states baffled not to mention the inconvenience caused. The NHAI has a three-language policy for road signage across all state and national highways — vernacular of the particular state, Hindi and English. However, most of the milestones now have only names written in Tamil and Hindi. Not to mention that many Hindi translations have been faulty confusing travellers more than anything. “Workers have been erasing English names on milestones on Chittoor-Vellore NH and replacing it with Hindi. Adding to the confusion is the rather shoddy translation of names. A case in point is the Hindi translation of Gudiyatham, which reads Kudhiyatham,” The New Indian Express reported.

The move has not only caused confusion it has irked people of the state who have taken to social media to vent out their anger and launch a protest under the hashtag #StopHindiChauvinism.

This is not the first time ‘wrongly’ imposing Hindi has caused a public outcry, earlier in the 1930s and 1960s, Tamil Nadu saw massive protests and riots against ‘Hindi imposition’. Several politicians too have come forward across political lines and vehemently opposed the move.

As the political parties have launched a scathing attack on the BJP for the move, Netizens argue that while Hindi may be an official language, it is not the national language of the country. And not just from Tamil Nadu, people across all over India and joined in the protest.

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