After allegations that Southern Railway was resorting to Hindi imposition, the authorities of Tiruppur railway station removed Hindi signage ‘Sahyog’ from the station.
The signage was removed on Tuesday. The issue cropped up after signage ‘Sahyog’ in Hindi and the same words in Tamil and English came up at the Tiruppur railway station. There were complaints from the passengers that the English and Tamil versions were transliterations of the Hindi word and people could not understand them.
Shanmuganathan, a Tiruppur-based garment exporter while speaking to IANS said, “We know English and Hindi but there are a huge number of people who know only Tamil. The Southern Railway should have written the Tamil meaning of Sahayog in Tamil to help the people. We strongly doubt that there was an intended move to impose Hindi in Tiruppur railway station.”
He said that it was a protest from the local people that led to the Railways to remove the Hindi signage.
It may be recalled that instead of Sahyog, it was ‘Sevai Mayyam’ in Tamil and ‘Information Centre’ in English that was written as signage and it was easier for people to understand the meaning.
The political arm of the powerful Vanniyar community, the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) had come out strongly against the Railways bringing out the signage in only Hindi. Dr. S. Ramadoss, the founder leader of PMK said that this was a move intended at imposing Hindi in Tamil Nadu.
Southern Railway authorities when contacted said that the signage was put up in Hindi as there were a large number of guest workers working in the industrial areas of Tiruppur. However, the PMK local leaders said that this was a “bogey as a majority of passengers frequenting the station were local Tamil people”.
Now the signage has Tamil, English, and Hindi words that could be properly understood by the people.