Members of the Navakarnataka Nirman Vedike have threatened to go on indefinite hunger strike from Monday, demanding that primary education in Kannada-medium be made a compulsory criterion for recruitment for government jobs.

Vedike’s State president G. Ramesh Gowda told reporters here on Thursday that the organisation has been taking up the matter with the State government for four years now, concerned about the sharp decline in the number of admissions to government Kannada-medium schools.

“The main reason is the lack of jobs for those who have studied in Kannada-medium and fewer options for higher education,” Mr. Ramesh Gowda said.

“If the criterion for recruitment to government jobs is changed, parents will no longer be apprehensive of sending their wards to Kannada-medium schools,” he said.

He said that the vedike’s demands included improving quality of education in schools, 50 per cent reservation in higher educational institutions and 75 per cent reservation in jobs in multi-national companies, private companies for those whose primary education is in Kannada-medium, and imparting English as a language from class one in government schools.