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Rivals share stage to promote Bhojpuri

- Parties want language in Eighth Schedule

Patna, Dec. 28: Leaders cutting across party lines attended the Akhil Bharatiya Bhojpuri Sahitya Sammelan where a demand was made for the language’s inclusion in the Eighth Schedule of Constitution.

Inaugurating the silver jubilee conference of the sammelan, Kerala Governor Nikhil Kumar advocated for including Bhojpuri in the Eighth Schedule and for creation of a Bhojpuri Pradesh. He said: “Bhojpuri is spoken not only in large parts of India but in countries like Fiji, Mauritius and Guyana, and also in the US and UK.”

The Centre is obliged to take measures for development of languages (22) in the Eighth Schedule and a candidate sitting for a public service exam can answer the paper in any of these languages. The issue of Bhojpuri’s inclusion is pending before Lok Sabha. When the demand came up in Lok Sabha, Kumar said: “Then home minister P Chidamabaram (Tamil-speaking) had replied in Bhojpuri, ‘Rau aa ka chaha taani, hum jaani tani (I know what you people want)’.”

Kumar said the sammelan would move a resolution demanding inclusion of Bhojpuri in Eighth Schedule and send it to the central government.

Bihar legislative council chairman Awadhesh Narain Singh said Bhojpuri was spoken by 26 crore people but had not got due respect. Despite the apparent bid to woo Bhojpuri-speaking people ahead of elections, the parties denied any politics. BJP state vice-president Sanjay Mayukh said: “People from all walks of life, including politicians from various parties, who like Bhojpuri, attended the function.”

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