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HC pulls up govt over language policy

Press Trust Of India  |  Chennai/ Bangalore 

The High Court today rapped the Karnataka government for failing to act on its order striking down the state language policy making Kannada a compulsory medium of instruction in primary schools, rejecting its plea for more time to make clear its stand on the issue.

Hearing a batch of contempt petitions filed by private schools, a bench comprising Justices N Kumar and A N Venugopala Gowda said even after lapse of a year since the High Court pronounced its verdict on July 2, 2008 striking down the government’s 1994 language policy, the state took no steps to implement it.

The state government pleaded with the court for granting time till July 21, when the Supreme Court hears its plea challenging the full bench order, to make clear its stand on the issue. But the court, rapped the government for its attempts at “buying time” and directed that the Chief Secretary appear before it on July 13 and file an affidavit making clear the state’s stand on the language policy.

Advocate General Ashok Haranahally pleaded with the court to give some time to enable the government to approach the Supreme Court, and pointed out that the apex court had fixed the matter for hearing on July 21. The bench also dismissed another appeal by the state challenging the single judge order of April 6, 2009 asking the government to consider an application filed by private school management to start English Medium classes.

The Karnataka High Court bench adjourned further hearing to July 13.

The state, which has already filed a special leave petition praying for quashing of the High Court order on language policy, early this week appealed to the Supreme Court to advance the date of hearing which had been slated for August 10.

The apex court has agreed to hear the matter on July 21

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First Published: Thu, July 09 2009. 00:23 IST