MK Stalin, DMK leader has criticized Union Home Minister Amit Shah for asserting the need for ‘one nation, one language’ on Saturday while greeting the nation on the occasion of ‘Hindi Diwas’. Stalin said, “this is India, not Hindia”.

The Tamil Nadu Leader of Opposition said, “The Home Minister’s views threatening India’s integrity are painful and condemnable. The DMK will not hesitate to unite states which stand to lose rights due to Hindi dominance,”

Earlier on Saturday, Shah emphasized on the need have a common language throughout the country, and Hindi by virtue of being “widely spoken” could fulfill that need. He also asked people to increase the use of mother tongue in their daily life to realise the dreams of Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.

“India is a country of different languages and every language has its own importance but it is very important to have a language of the whole country which should become the identity of India in the world. Today, if one language can do the work of tying the country to the door of unity, then it is the most spoken Hindi language,” Shah said in a series of tweets in Hindi.

In June the Centre had tried this emphasis on Hindi language through the Draft New Educational Policy 2019 which recommended mandatory Hindi teaching in all schools. It had created turmoil, especially in the southern states like Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Other states like West Bengal, Maharashtra and Karnataka also protested over the issue.

Leaders of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka and Congress lawmaker from Kerala Shashi Tharoor had issued warnings against the forced imposition of the Hindi language on South Indian states.

Days after widespread outcry over the draft version of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2019 for making Hindi compulsory in non-Hindi speaking states, the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) released a revised draft removing any reference to ‘Hindi’.

The revised draft said, “In keeping with the principle of flexibility, students who wish to change one or more of the three languages they are studying may do so in Grade 6 or Grade 7, so long as they are able to still demonstrate proficiency in three languages (one language at the literature level) in their modular Board Examinations some time during secondary school.”

The revised draft did not mention any specific language for study by students in school.

Hindi Diwas is celebrated every year on September 14, marking the significance of the day when the country’s Constituent Assembly adopted Hindi as the official language of India.

One of the 22 scheduled languages of the country, Hindi was adopted as the official language of the country on September 14, 1949.