Classism Much? Pani Puri Sellers Speak Hindi: TN Minister

K Ponmudy, Tamil Nadu’s Higher Education Minister, sparked outrage on Thursday when he referred to Hindi as the language of those selling ‘pani puri.’ Mr Ponmudy was the keynote speaker at a university convocation.

In his speech, he said, “someone said one would get jobs if you learn Hindi. Are you getting jobs? Go and see in our city Coimbatore, they sell pani puri. They run pani puri shops.”

He continued his speech by saying, “now, English is an international language. In Tamil Nadu, we should have our own system. In Tamil Nadu, Tamil is a local language and we have English the international language. Because unity in diversity, various cultures and languages are there. In Tamil Nadu, we should follow our own educational system. We also follow certain new good policies in the New Education Policy. And we are ready to follow it.”

He also reiterated the DMK’s opposition to Hindi imposition and stated that the state government would maintain the two-language formula. He went on to say that he used the platform to highlight Tamil Nadu’s position on the language issue.

His speech came up after the Hindi imposition controversies which have been raging in the country.

His speech soon blew up and became controversial as his words indicated that Hindi speakers did menial jobs. Clarifying his stance, he told the reporters, “I was talking to the people who said that if you speak Hindi, you get employment in the North. But what I mentioned is that in the North itself there is unemployment.”

Let us know what you think about his remarks in the comments below!


References: India Today and NDTV

Featured image source: Tamil News- News 18

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