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Friday, February 02, 2007

K'taka to introduce Konkani in schools

The Karnataka government is planning to include Konkani as an optional third languages in schools in the state. Many view this as Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy's gift to Konkanis as his government completes one year.

This is reaffirmed by many students who say that though Hindi is their third language in school, they would like to learn Konkani instead.

Though many view this move as a populist measure aimed at appeasing the Konkani community, which constitutes about 5 per cent of the state's population, Kumaraswamy disagrees.

"This is not a populist measure. This is a long pending demand of the Konkani speaking people and I have told the Education Minister to work out a plan. Something positive will come out of it," says he.

The Konkani community has of course welcomed the move. However, many foresee problems in implementing the plan.

Says ex-member of the Konkani Sahitya Academy, Lata U Pai, "This won't work out. It is hard to implement such a move since Konakani doesn't have a script or a dialect."

Adds Headmaster of the Government School in Chamrajpet, Kondappa, "We have to find someone who can teach the language, because we don't any have idea about the language."

The Chief Minister is denying the proposal as a populist measure but considering that the JD(S) has joined hands with the BJP for the first time, many feel that this is a ploy of the coalition government to garner votes.

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