Kanimozhi's experience not unusual, have faced similar taunts from govt officers, says Chidambaram

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Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram has tweeted in support of DMK MP's allegation that she faced language bias at the hands of CISF personnel at an airport.

 

Stating the unpleasant experience of DMK MP Kanimozhi Karunanidhi at Chennai airport is not "unusual", former Union Minister and Congress leader P Chidambaram on Monday said that he had experienced similar "taunts" from government officers and citizens who insisted that he speak in Hindi.

In a series of tweets over the issue, Chidambaram said if the Centre is genuinely committed to both Hindi and English being the official languages of India then it must insist that all Central government employees are bilingual in Hindi and English.

"The unpleasant experience of DMK MP Kanimozhi at Chennai airport is not unusual," Chidambaram tweeted.

"I have experienced similar taunts from government officers and ordinary citizens who insisted that I speak in Hindi during telephone conversations and sometimes face to face," he added.

"If the Central government is genuinely committed to both Hindi and English being the official languages of India, it must insist that all Central government employees are bilingual in Hindi and English," Chidambaram tweeted.

"Non-Hindi speaking recruits to central government posts quickly learn functional, spoken Hindi. Why cannot Hindi speaking recruits to central government posts learn functional, spoken English?" he asked.

On Sunday, MP Kanimozhi alleged that a CISF personnel at Chennai airport questioned her nationality for not knowing Hindi. The DMK MP took to Twitter to inform about the incident. 

The query was posed to her by the Central Industrial Security Force woman officer when Kanimozhi asked the former to speak to her either in Tamil or English.

The DMK leader put out a tweet over the issue, expressing her anguish over the incident.

"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. I would like to know from when being Indian is equal to knowing Hindi," she had tweeted.
She posted the tweet along with the hashtag #hindiimposition.

After Kanimozhi tweeted about the incident, CISF ordered an enquiry into the matter.
 

With inputs from Agency

Image credit: PTI

 

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