Tamil Nadu Leads Rest Of South India In Number Of Students Learning Hindi Voluntarily, Says Report
Tamil Nadu Leads Rest Of South India In Number Of Students Learning Hindi Voluntarily, Says ReportRepresentative image of a student in a Hindi class in Mumbai (Anshuman Poyrekar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Figures released by the Dakshina Bharat Hindi Prachar Sabha, which was set up by Mahatma Gandhi in 1918 with a view to spread Hindi language learning in South India, show that Tamil Nadu tops in the number students appearing for its exams among southern states, reports The New Indian Express.

The statistics shed light on the irony of politicians from the state, particularly from the DMK, opposing the draft National Education Policy (NEP) and the three-language policy, claiming that the same amounted to Hindi chauvinism.

Over the last nine years, the Chennai region alone has seen a more than six-fold spike in the number of students appearing for the Hindi language exams held by the Sabha, growing from 27,600 in 2009 to 1.6 lakh in 2018.

Excluding Chennai, Tamil Nadu saw the number of students sitting for the said exams increase from 1.5 lakh to 4.2 lakh over the same period. The combined figure for the whole state is thus 5.8 lakh, much higher than the other southern states.

Andhra Pradesh and Telangana combined only reached 2.38 lakh students appearing for the Sabha’s exams, while the figure stood at around 42,000 for Karnataka and 20,000 in Kerala.

Explaining the increased demand, the Sabha’s general secretary S Jeyaraj remarked, “About 80 per cent of our students are school children enrolled by parents who hope they will have a better future by learning one more language. The remaining 20 per cent are professionals, job-seekers and those who learn the language out of personal interest.”

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