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Parents campaign against Kannada mandate sparks debate

Karnataka Educational Institutions Rules condemned for sidelining Kannada

June 9, 2022

The Kannada Development Authority has raised objections to the newly framed Karnataka Educational Institutions (Issue of No Objection Certificate and Control) Rules, 2022 over neglecting Kannada language.

TS Nagabharana, the chairperson of the authority has called out the education department for sidelining the regional language while drafting the rules.

The draft notification, which was released in May has it that CBSE, ICSE and IB Schools can teach students Kannada as either the second or third language.

Nagabharana opposed the same draft rules and said that the previous mandate of teaching Kannada either as the first or second language only as per the Kannada Language Learning Act, 2015 has been overlooked while framing these rules.

The Kannada language Learning Act, 2015 mandates that every school in Karnataka is bound to teach Kannada either as the first or second language.

“If the draft rules that are available in public domain are to be agreed upon, and if CBSE, ICSE and International boards affiliated schools follow the same, it will be a huge setback for propagation of Kannada language. It will also affect children who are already learning Kannada as the first or second language in schools. If this is allowed, the government will further loose hold over these schools,” he said, implying that schools would find loopholes not to teach Kannada to students.

Nagabharana also said that it was the onus of the state to ensure that Kannada is propagated. “If our own state does not take up the cause, can we expect some other state or country to protect the language?” Nagabharana questioned in a letter addressed to the principal secretary of the department of primary and secondary education.

Citing from the Kannada Language Learning Act, 2015, the Kannada Development Authority has sought that the rules be changed. “If the department does not take immediate notice of the matter and change the same, we will fight for it,” said Nagabharana.

Also read: Kannada not mandatory for college students, govt relaxes mandate

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