Bengaluru, July 11: The Karnataka government has rolled back the decision to make English the mandatory medium of education in all public schools. The move was announced by Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy while presenting the State Budget.
In the Budget document, Kumaraswamy had promised to implement the project in 1,000 state-run schools on trial basis. The announcement, however, drew sharp reactions from Kannada groups which called it a threat to their culture.
A delegation comprising of Kannada Development Authority chief S G Siddaramaiah, writers Chandrashekhar Kambar and Chandrashekhar Patil and freedom fighter H S Doreswamy among others met Kumaraswamy earlier in the week demanding him to reverse the decision.
The delegation said subjecting the rural students to English as the medium of instruction will hinder their creative growth and push them into a "straightjacketed form of education".
Following the meet, Kumaraswamy said his government would put the decision on hold, and instead focus on teaching English only as a language. The medium of instruction will continue to remain Kannada. "Our coalition government will remain committed towards protecting the land, language and culture of Karnataka," he said.
Ahead of calling upon the CM, the delegation had threatened a state-wide agitation if the decision is not rolled back.