Odisha School and Mass Education Minister Samir Ranjan Dash has written a letter to his counterpart in the Jharkhand government, raising concern over exclusion of Odia language from the curriculum of teachers’ training course in Jharkhand.
In his letter to Jharkhand Education Minister Jagarnath Mahto, Dash said the people of Jharkhand and Odisha have a long-standing homogeneous cultural heritage and identity. The people of both the states had fought valiantly against the oppression of British rule, he said.
The Jharkhand government has rightly recognised the importance of this historical bond and accepted Odia as the second state language, he said.
“Our government is funding about 160 teachers through the Utkal Samilani to impart education in Odia in the Odia-speaking tracts like Sadheikala, Kharasuan, Singhbhoom and others. Around 35 Odia schools are also running in your state with the patronage of the government,” Dash further said.
The minister informed Mahto that an advertisement published on September 20 by the Jharkhand Academic Council has created doubt in the minds of Odia-speaking people.
In this advertisement, the minister said, which is meant for primary school teachers’ training, Odia language has been excluded from the 7th paper while languages like Sanskrit, Bengali, Urdu, Ho, Mundari, Sanathali and Kudmali have been included.
Stating that the move by Jharkhand government has created an atmosphere of dissent, distrust and discomfort fanning controversies among the Odia-speaking people, Dash requested the Jharkhand government to take needful action in this regard to restore and regain the trust and faith of Odia-speaking people.
“Hopefully, the action under your able leadership will prove that the policy of a welfare state not only shows a human face, but palpably animates itself with the emotive rhythm of human heart,” he added.
Two days ago, the Leader of Opposition (BJP) in Odisha Assembly, P.K. Naik, had also written to the chief ministers of Odisha and Jharkhand on this issue.