PIL Against Telugu’s Classical Status Dismissed

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Desha Bhaashalandhu Telugu Lessa, goes the saying. Whether or not our language gets declared as ‘Classical’ on paper, Telugu holds great prominence in the Indian literature as one of the oldest and the best.

Even the Law now agrees with the concord. The Madras High Court had finally dismissed the public interest litigation that was filed against Telugu and few other languages. The PIL challenged the classical language status to Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam and Odiya.

“Every language is a temple, in which the soul of those who speak it is enshrined,” the Madras High Court stated, quoting American author Oliver Wendell Holmes

Explaining clearly that only experts can verify whether the languages in question satisfy the norms set for according the classical status, the First Bench of Chief Justice S.K. Kaul and Justice R. Mahadevan spoke – “Having been satisfied, the expert body suggested declaration of the languages in consideration to be classical. The facts which made the expert body to recommend the promulgation of such declaration have also been placed before us … As such we do not find any reason to interfere with the impinged declaration.”

The judicial bench also stated that the court could not be converted into a forum for debate on the above kind of matters. If the petitioner still felt that the particulars furnished by the respective states would not satisfy the criteria, it was confirmed that it is open to them to approach the authorities.

Suggestions for the type of literature that becomes the benchmark for qualification has to be put in consideration to the concerned authorities.

The PIL was filed in 2008, right after the central government accorded the status to Kannada and Telugu. Chennai-based senior advocate R. Gandhi moved the High Court challenging the decision, alleging undue influence in the grant of status.



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