Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: The use of Odia as Official Language of the State is yet to be implemented despite the fact that it was approved by the Odisha Cabinet twice in the past.

The State Cabinet on March 14 had decided to amend the Odia Official Language Act 1954 and make provision for punishing government staff who will not abide by the rule on use of the language.

However, a bill regarding this is yet to be passed in the Odisha Assembly.

On December 26, 2017, the Cabinet had decided to for madatory use of Odia in signage boards by commercial and business units.

Besides, a decision was taken for formation of the Odia Bhasa Commission. But, the execution of the decision has remained in pen and paper.

Several organisations fighting for the Odia language have expressed anguish over the delay in passing the bill on use of Odia as the Official Language.

"It seems the Odisha government does not to have any interest to make Odia as the Official language. The draft bill has not been prepared yet. The State government is only hoodwinking people," said Subas Patnaik, convener of the Odia Bhasa Andolana.

Expressing similar views Baishnab Parida, President of the Odisha Bhasha Suraksha Sammilani alleged that seriousness on part of the State government in implementing the law strictly is 'missing'.

Government office buildings and business establishments are yet to have sign and display boards in Odia.

Labour Minister Sushant Singh on the other hand said the Bill for amendment to the Odisha Official Language Act , 1954 will be tabled in Assembly in second phase of the Budget Session.

Culture Minister Ashok Panda stated the government will take action if mandatory signage in Odia norm is not followed strictly.

"Second phase of the Budget session will get over on April 30 during which several bills will be passed. After the passage of the bill in the House, we will ensure that it is executed properly," said the Labour Minister added.