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BJP ally Shiv Sena today jumped into the controversy ignited by the new PM Narendra Modi govt - Union Home Ministry has issued directives on use of Hindi - saying reports of the language being "banned" in Odisha Assembly are shocking.
"In Odisha legislature, the Speaker instructed that Hindi not be used. He told a legislator not to speak in Hindi.
English is accepted as a substitute for Oriya language but not Hindi," an editorial in Sena mouthpiece "Saamana" said.
"PM Narendra Modi has given Hindi a place of pride. He also addressed Bhutan Parliament in Hindi. At a time when Hindi is being given such importance, reports that there is a ban in Odisha Assembly on speaking in Hindi and asking questions in Hindi are shocking," it said.
"If Narendra Modi as the PM does not promote Hindi then who else will," it said.
"Agreed that English is a global language. But is it justified to give a secondary status to national language Hindi," the editorial asked.
The Sena comments come in the backdrop of the Union Home Ministry issuing directives to use Hindi for interactions on the social media and different voices emerging from regional parties on the issue.
"In Mumbai, even if a Hindi speaker were to slip on a banana peel, the Hindi devotees in North say injustice is being done to them," it said.
"Now, injustice has been done to Hindi in Odisha Assembly. They should train their guns there," it added.