[lg policy] India: English to continue as link language in Puducherry: Court

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at GMAIL.COM
Sun Sep 14 16:22:02 UTC 2014

English to continue as link language in Puducherry: CourtTNN | Sep 14,
2014, 12.42 AM IST

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<http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/topic/Madras-High-Court>|link language
in Puducherry
formula in Puducherry

CHENNAI: Refusing to interfere with the four-language formula in the Union
Territory of Puducherry, Madras high court has said English would continue
to be the link language for transaction of official business and in the
interest of public service.

According to language policy of Puducherry, Tamil will be the official
language for all or any of official purposes, whereas Malayalam may be used
for official purposes in Mahe region and Telugu in Yanam region. English
may be used for all or the official purposes, meaning it could act as link
languages common to all regions in the Union Territory. The PIL, filed by
Puduvai Kalai Ilakkia Peru Mandram wanted to direct the territorial
administration to adhere to its language policy in 'letter and spirit.''

The first bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice M
Sathyanarayanan, concurring with the submissions of senior government
pleader and public prosecutor T Murugesan on Thursday, refused to issue any
direction to that effect saying: "The notification has been issued keeping
in mind the peculiarity of the Union Territory of Puducherry, where there
are people from different regions speaking different languages. The local
languages are three in number and that is why Section 3 refers to the area
and the respective language for that area, with a non-obstante clause for
official communication in English on account of there being really three
local languages. Thus, a four-language formula is applied specially, as
even the officers may be using one language or the other in their
respective areas."

The counter-affidavit of the territorial administration too made it clear
that English language continued to be the link language among all officers
working in all the four regions - Puducherry, Karaikal, Mahe and Yanam - to
avoid deviation in official business and in the interest of public service.

As for the PIL's give Tamil its due importance, it said separate cell -
Tamil Development Wing - is proposed to be created in the chief
secretariat. The legislative business is also carried out in Tamil, it
said, adding: "The determination of government of Puducherry to implement
the use of Tamil in all official correspondence in a phase manner has been
set out, and a separate cell is created involving a cost of 10 crore per


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