Emphasising that diversity is the foundation of India’s democracy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 22 said the country’s various languages are an important identity of its liberal and democratic society.
Mr. Modi said India has progressed for centuries with dozens of languages and hundreds of dialects.
“Our various languages are an important identity of our liberal and democratic society. For centuries, our nation has been moving forward with dozens of languages and hundreds of dialects. Diversity is the foundation of our vibrant democracy,” he said.
Mr. Modi highlighted the importance of linguistic diversity at a time when his Home Minister Amit Shah pitched for Hindi as a common language , which drew flak from Opposition parties . However, Mr. Shah had later clarified that he never asked for imposition of Hindi over native languages in the country but advocated its use as the second language.
To highlight the linguistic diversity of India, Mr. Modi said “all is fine in India” in several Indian languages from Punjabi to Bengali to Tamil among others. “When you ask me Howdy, Modi? the only answer is ‘everything is fine’,” he said and then kept on repeating it in several Indian languages.