Will Consider This: Odisha Government on Jharkhand’s Removal of Second Language Label Given to Odia – The New Indian Express
BHUBANEWAR: Waking up to widespread protests over the Jharkhand government’s decision to remove Odia’s second language status from the school curriculum, the state government said on Wednesday it would raise the issue with the neighboring state .
Education and Mass Education Minister Sameer Ranjan Dash said he would speak to his counterpart in Jharkhand to protect the interests of Odia residents there. Stating that Odisha’s government shares a cordial relationship with Jharkhand, the minister said he will ensure that Odia students receive education in their native language in the neighboring state.
Dash said he would ask Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to discuss the issue with his Jharkhand counterpart if necessary.
Meanwhile, the leader of the opposition in the Odisha Assembly, Pradipta Naik, called for the intervention of Union Home Minister Amit Shah, the chief ministers of Odisha and Jharkhand on the sensitive and controversial decision of the neighboring state.
Writing separately to Shah, Patnaik and Hemant Soren, Naik said: “The Odia-speaking people living in Jharkhand, mainly Saraikela Kharsawan, the districts of eastern Singhbhum and western Singhbhum, and a few other parts state, were exploited and harassed by Jharkhand’s government. since a long time.”
He said that about 70 percent of the people in these areas speak Odia. When the states were reorganized in 1956 on a linguistic basis, these areas should have been merged with Odisha.
However, this was not done on purpose as these areas are rich in minerals. “Since then, Odia-speaking people in these areas have been discriminated against and harassed by the former Bihar and present-day Jharkhand state,” the letter said.
In 2011, the government of Jharkhand granted second language status to the Odia language. However, the same was decided to be withdrawn. This will negatively affect the population of Odia in at least 10 districts of Jharkhand.
“I learned that different organizations in these regions protested against the decision and alerted the governor of Jharkhand. But no action has been taken so far,” he added.