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‘Listen to my speech carefully’: Amit Shah counters critics on Hindi row

Home Minister Amit Shah has said that he never asked for imposing Hindi over the regional languages and it was up to others if they wanted to do politics over it. Shah said he only asked for learning Hindi as the second language since the country needed one such language. Shah was speaking at Hindustan Purvodaya 2019 in Ranchi, Jharkhand on Wednesday.

“I myself come from a non-Hindi state of Gujarat, people should hear my speech properly, if they want to do politics, it is their choice, but my speech should be reheard to clear the confusion,” Shah said responding to southern states’ opposition to promoting Hindi at the expense of the regional languages.

“I have repeatedly said that Indian languages should be strengthened and their necessity must be understood. A child will only do well if taught in its mother tongue, which is not necessarily Hindi. It can also be the regional language like Gujarati,” Shah said before adding that he only requested for learning Hindi as a second language.

“But there should be one language in the country, if you want to learn a second language then let it be Hindi, this was my request, I don’t understand why it was found offensive,” Shah added.

“We will need a campaign to strengthen regional languages in the country otherwise we will end up like Australia and New Zealand who do not remember their original native language.”

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