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Are there steps taken to translate names of welfare schemes sponsored by centre into Manipuri from Hindi, English? MHRC asks DIPR, language dept

MHRC acting chairperson Khaidem Mani

A complaint petition was filed with the MHRC seeking directives to be issued to Directorate of Information and Public Relations (DIPR) and Manipur Language Department (MLD), Government of Manipur on translating the names of various centrally sponsored welfare schemes.

TFM Desk

Manipur Human Rights Commission (MHRC) on Monday asked the Directorate of Information and Public Relations (DIPR) and Manipur Language Department (MLD), government of Manipur whether or not any steps/proposals have been taken up to translate the names of centrally sponsored welfare schemes written in Hindi into Manipuri. The respondents have been asked to submit their replies on or before June 6, 2022.

While pointing out that Manipuri is recognised language under the 8th Schedule of the Indian Constitution, the MHRC observed that the translation of the names of these schemes was important “so that the citizens of this State may effectively and fully avail the benefits from these Central Welfare Schemes”.

However, the MHRC in its order erroneously wrote that Hindi is the “national language” of India as stated under Article 343 of the Constitution of India. Article 343. (1) of the Indian Constitution says “The official language of the Union shall be Hindi in Devanagari script”

The MHRC order followed a complaint filed by one Thokchom Tondon (26). The commission examined the complaint petition and registered it as case under Section 12(a) and (h) of the PHR Act, 1993.

The commission acknowledged that the BJP government under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been initiating a number of “development as well as welfare works” under various programmes that are named and written in Hindi/English and as such, the complainant and other fellow citizens, almost all of whom “cannot fully know these programmes” as they do not understand the meaning of the names, some of which are – Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan Swachh Bharat Mission; Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana; Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-Dhan; Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana; Pradhan Mantri Kisan Maan Dhan Yojana; Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay;  Shramev Jayate Yojana; Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana; Namami Gange; Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana; Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana; Rashtriya Gokul Mission etc.

The petition also argued that the inability to read and know the meanings of the programmes as they are being written in Hindi/English, “has been a major stumbling block to the proper execution of these programmes”. The situation has also resulted in a serious violation of a citizen’s right to know, receive and disseminate developmental and welfare works/programmes undertaken by the central government, said the petition.

The complainant had approached the MHRC to give appropriate direction to the respondents so as to translate the development and welfare programmes of the government of India written in Hindi into Manipuri.

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