GANDHI’s OPPOSITION TO HINDI AND SUPPORT FOR URDU
Before partition of India in 1947, Gandhi generally spoke in favor of use of Hindi, and was twice Chairman of the “Hindi Sahitya Sammelan”. As 15th August 1947 came nearer and nearer, he changed his posture and started opposing Hindi. On 24th July 1947, he started in his speech, that “although I have been twice Chairman of the Hindi Sahitya Sammelan, still I am of the view, that Hindi and Devnagri script cannot be the National language of India. “(See Page – 286, Gandhi Sahitya Prarthana Pravachan, Part –1)
In the meantime, the U.P. Government announced Hindi as the official language of the state. Gandhi was extremely angry and stated in his prayer speech on 15th October 1947 that “He had seen a paragraph in the press that henceforth the official language of the U.P. would be Hindi with Devnagri script. It hurt him. Of all the Muslims in the Indian Union, nearly one forth resided in U. P. —————–The right thing would be to keep both the scripts (ie. Devnagri and Persian) and use of either acceptable in all official dealings ————. They should treat the Muslims as equal citizens. Equality of treatment demands respect for Urdu script. They must not produce a state in which respectable life was impossible and still claim that they did not want Muslims or driving them away or suppressing them in any way. _______________”(see page –88, Delhi Dairy).
The above statement of Gandhi is in no way less provocative and poisonous than the statements of Muslim Fundamentalists. However, Jinnah and Muslim League were more reasonable and balanced in their views. They had stated a number of times that after the creation of Pakistan as a homeland for the Muslims. The best of the India could develop himself according to Hindu culture and traditions. The above statement of Gandhi gave a new life to the dead Muslim League and fundamentalism in truncated India, the results of which can be seen now. Muslims are now dreaming of creating another homeland in truncated India.