Kannadigas and Telugus demand apology from Times of India sign now

We, the undersigned, petition the Times of India to provide an explanation and tender an apology over its irresponsible coverage of the declaration of Kannada and Telugu as classical languages on November 1. This MUST be published in all its editions

We read with chagrin the coverage of Kannada and Telugu being declared classical languages in the various editions of your newspaper dated November 1. While the Bengaluru and Hyderabad editions celebrate the official declaration as well-deserved and long overdue [1], [2], the other editions from across the country call this an example of politics prevailing over expertise [3]. And yes, the source for both these news items is the Times News Network. This reeks of bigotry and hypocrisy; and pandering to regional and chauvinistic forces.

The incriminating article goes on to say that this was a Forced Decision despite serious differences within the expert group. It is worth noting here that these purported serious differences were raised by a lone member of the panel, V.C. Kulandaiswamy, not surprisingly from Tamil Nadu. The other experts were all agreed that Kannada and Telugu deserve the tag.

Interestingly, this lone expert also claims that Tamil was born even before the earth could take shape [4]. He has also vowed to establish Tamil on the top of all language hierarchies and to prove that all other languages were born from it! No linguist of substance or repute would actually make such tall and ludicrous claims.

The fact of the matter is that Kannada and Telugu have obtained this richly-deserved and long overdue official tag despite politics, chauvinism and the changing goalposts set for classicism. And it is a just cause for pride and celebration among Kannadigas and Telugus the world-over.

The Times of India certainly owes an explanation to all its readers and an apology to all Kannada and Telugu brethren regarding this irresponsible and differential news reporting. This MUST be published in all the editions across the country.

Thank you

References
[1] http://epaper.timesofindia.com/Default/Scripting/ArticleWin.asp?From=Archive&Source=Page&Skin=TOI&BaseHref=TOIBG/2008/11/01&PageLabel=1&EntityId=Ar00100&ViewMode=HTML&GZ=T

[2] http://epaper.timesofindia.com/Default/Scripting/ArticleWin.asp?From=Archive&Source=Page&Skin=TOI&BaseHref=TOIH/2008/11/01&PageLabel=1&EntityId=Ar00100&ViewMode=HTML&GZ=T

[3] http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Telugu_Kannada_get_classical_tag/articleshow/3660666.cms

[2] http://www.hindu.com/2008/06/25/stories/2008062559170300.htm

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Heather DurhamBy:
International PolicyIn:
Petition target:
Editorial Board, Times of India

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