Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman delivered a speech in Hindi on Thursday at an event organised by the Hindi Vivek Magazine and said addressing an audience in Hindi gives her ‘shivers’. “I speak Hindi with a lot of ‘sankoch’,” she said adding that it is difficult for a person to learn a new language after adulthood. She said she picked up Telugu, his husband’s mother tongue, but not Hindi. However, she continued her Hindi speech for 35 minutes in which she criticised the 1991 economic reforms and called them ‘aadhe-adhure’.
On Hindi, she recollected the situation o Tamil Nadu at the time when she attended college. There were violent protests against Hindi in the state, she said. Students opting for either Hindi or Sanskrit as the second language were not considered eligible for scholarships by the state government, even if they were toppers, she said.
This came a day after the celebration of Hindi Diwas to which Tamil Nadu chief minister M Stalin opposed and said the Centre should celebrate Indian Languages Day instead of Hindi Diwas. India is known for its integrity and there must not be any efforts aimed at dividing the country in the name of ‘Hindia’, Stalin said.
In her Hindi speech, Nirmala Sitharaman talked about economy as she claimed that no progress happened until Atal Bihari Vajpayee became the prime minister. Ten more years were lost after the corrupt UPA government came to power, where the focus was making personal gains and the country’s interests were left behind, the finance minister said adding how Modi initiated fundamental, path-breaking reforms like direct benefit transfer scheme.
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