BJD MP attacks State govt for failure to use of Odia as official language

Bhubaneswar: BJD Rajya Sabha MP Baishnab Parida on Friday embarrassed the State government yet again alleging that Odia language is being neglected by government functionaries.

He was also critical of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for not announcing implementation of a law enacted in 1954 pertaining to the use of Odia language in all official communication.

Parida said, “The language of the Secretariat, collector offices, blocks, panchayats and government offices has become English instead of Odia. The State government is responsible for the prevailing situation.”

He further stated, “We were expecting the Chief Minister to announce today the implementation of the law enacted in 1954 in the State. But he disappointed the people of Odisha by not declaring anything.”

Expressing similar views, Prasad Harichandan, PCC President, said, “For the last 16 years, the Odia language has been neglected.”

He added, “During the Congress-led UPA govt, the Odia language got the Classical language status. However, due to the negligence of the State government as well as the Chief Minister, the language could not be used as an official language.”

Mounting an attack on the Chief Minister, senior BJP leader Biswabhusan Harichandan said, “It has been 14 years. The Chief Minister is neither speaking in Odia language nor and interacting with Odias. That is very unfortunate.”

Meanwhile, refuting the charges, State Culture Minister Ashok Panda said, “The government has been taking steps to develop and promote the use of the Odia language. There is no truth in the allegations against the State government.”

“If the Chief Minister is not concerned about the Odia language, how come so many projects related the language get placed in the State Budget?” he asked.