Tamil Nadu slams Prasar Bharati for 15-minutes Sanskrit news bulletin in Podhigai TVtext_fields
Political parties across Tamil Nadu condemned the central government for its new decision to broadcast 15 minutes news bulletin in the Sanskrit language. A new order by Prasar Bharati mandates 15 minutes Sanskrit news bulletin daily across its regional channels including Podhigai TV. Podhigai TV was constituted under the Prasar Bharati Act which allows for the creation of broadcasting services at the state level to develop regional languages and broadcasting in regional languages. Political parties and netizens have come to the fore demanding the withdrawal of the order.
"Why such importance has given for a language that has no listeners? Why is Sanskrit, like Hindi, being imposed on speakers of other languages? According to the 2011 Census, only 24,000 people claim that Sanskrit is their mother-tongue. Statistics reveal that there are only 803 in Tamil Nadu. If the news has to be read in Sanskrit for the sake of 803 Sanskrit speakers in Tamil Nadu that has a population of 7.5 crore Tamil-speaking people—then, by the same yardstick, will they also broadcast news in Tamil for 15 minutes in every Indian state where thousands and thousands of Tamils reside? When this is the case, why should time be allocated for broadcasting news in Sanskrit in Tamil Nadu alone?" slammed VCK leader Thol Thirumalavan.
MK Stalin, party President of DMK questioned, "Prasar Bharati's new order is an act of cultural invasion. Government of India has a great responsibility to ensure the unity of a diverse country by giving equal status to all 22 languages, including classical Tamil, in the eighth schedule of the Constitution. What is the need for Sanskrit news collection in Doordarshan's pack?"
Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) leader S Ramadoss and Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) leader also registered their opposition to the imposition of Sanskrit news in Tamil Nadu.
Netizens in Tamil Nadu claim that Sanskrit imposition is a part of "saffronization" by Union government. Political parties in the state have sent letters to the Centre expressing their disappointment.