[lg policy] Maha House: Oppn, Maha govt spar over dropping of Marathi song stanza

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Wed Feb 28 10:19:13 EST 2018


 Maha House: Oppn, Maha govt spar over dropping of Marathi song stanza

   - PTI
   - February 27, 2018
   - UPDATED 15:40 IST
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(Eds: Adds details of Assembly proceedings) Mumbai, Feb 27 (PTI)�A day
after the goof-up in translation during Governor Ch Vidyasagar Raos address
to Maharashtra Legislature, a similar glitch was witnessed today as the
last stanza of Marathi Abhimaan Geet wasnt played, evoking the oppositions
ire.

The opposition members in the state Assembly accused the government of
insulting the language on the occasion of Marathi Bhasha Gaurav Din, which
is observed every year on this day to commemorate the birth anniversary of
late poet V V Shirwadkar, also known as Kusumagraj.

The Marathi Abhimaan Geet, written by noted lilteratuer Suresh Bhat, was
played in the Vidhan Bhawan premises today as part of the celebrations, but
its last stanza was dropped.

After a technical glitch led to the pre-recorded songs last stanza not
being played, a performer present at the venue rushed to the microphone and
completed the song.

As soon as the Lower House assembled for the day, Speaker Haribhau Bagde
moved a resolution to mark the day and sought that Marathi be made a
language of knowledge and its development and preservation be expedited.

The resolution, which also sought for setting up of an advisory council to
draft a language policy, was passed unanimously by the House.

However, when the speaker called for the Question Hour, NCP leader Ajit
Pawar raised the issue of the faulty mikes during the Marathi Bhasha Gaurav
Din celebrations earlier, and the dropping of the last stanza of Marathi
Abhimaan Geet.

"Is this deliberate?" he asked.

It happened after yesterdays faux pas in the translation of the governors
speech into Marathi, he noted.

"The translator had come (yesterday during the Governors address) but he
was taken to the wrong place," Pawar charged.

The opposition members then entered the well of the House and started
shouting slogans.

Medha Kulkarni (BJP) said the Gaurav Geet (song of praise) has only six
stanzas.

"Just as few paras of Jana gana mana�and Vande Mataram have been adopted
as the national anthem and national song respectively, only six stanzas of
Bhats song have been adopted as the Marathi Gaurav Geet," she said.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis asked the opposition not to politicise the
issue as the delayed para referred to the sorry state of Marathi language.

"Who was the chief minister when this song was written. Whose government
was in power when the language was suffering?" he asked.

Later, Jayant�Patil (NCP) said the condition of Marathi language,
highlighted in the last stanza of the song, is relevant even today during
the BJP-Sena rule.

Leader of Opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil demanded an apology from the
government for the mikes going off and dropping of the songs last stanza.

Amid the din, the House was then adjourned for 15 minutes.

Later, when the House reassembled, the state education minister, Vinod
Tawde, said the original poem features in Suresh Bhats book Roopgandha.

Tawde said it was Bhats wish that the last stanza be omitted from the
Marathi Gaurav Geet. So even in schools, the children are taught only the
first six stanzas, he said.

Ajit�Pawar then demanded that the Marathi language be made mandatory in
schools till class 10.

To this, Tawde replied that at present the language is compulsory till
class 8.

"We are working on whether it should be till class 10 or 12," he said.

Tawde said the sentiments of the Legislative Assembly will be conveyed to
the school curriculum board.

Jayant Patil then sought to know about the demand for giving Marathi, the
status of a classical language.

At that time, Tawde left the House to which the opposition members objected.

They entered the well and shouted slogans.

The Speaker then adjourned the House till the end of the Question Hour.

Earlier, Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, leader of opposition in the Assembly,
told reporters outside the House that there were seven stanzas in the song
but only the first six were performed.

"Who gave you the permission to omit the last stanza and under what
authority?. This is sheer negligence and callous approach of the state
government to Marathi language," he said.

"The state had already shown its lack of seriousness in translation of the
Governors speech yesterday and today it insulted the Marathi people again,"
the Congress leader said.

Tawde said Bhat wrote the song when there was a movement going on for
formation of states based on language. "Bhat added a stanza almost after 20
years but maintained that the original song be used as Marathi Abhimaan
Geet. So there is no question of deliberately omitting a particular
stanza," he added. PTI MR ND VT GK RCJ RCJ -



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 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com
http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~haroldfs/

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