I shudder to speak Hindi, I speak it with hesitation: Finance Minister Sitaram

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said that speaking Hindi leaves her shivering and she speaks the language with hesitation. The Finance Minister further explained why this happens to him and what has been the reason behind it. Sitharaman said she was born in Tamil Nadu and studied in college amid the movement against Hindi and witnessed violent protests against Hindi.

The Union cabinet minister claimed that students who opted for Hindi or Sanskrit as their second language, even those in the top list, were not given scholarships by the state government because of the language of their choice. Sitharaman said it is difficult for a person to learn a new language after becoming an adult, but she could learn Telugu, her husband’s mother tongue, but could not learn Hindi due to past incidents.

Speaks Hindi with utmost hesitation

She admitted, ‘I speak Hindi with a lot of hesitation.’ She admitted that this affected the flow with which she could speak. The Finance Minister, however, gave his speech in Hindi itself which lasted for more than 35 minutes. Sitharaman said that India could have already ranked as the fifth largest economy in the world, but could not do so because of the imported philosophy of socialism which relied on centralized planning.

The economic reforms of 1991 were told half-incomplete

He termed the economic reforms carried out by the then Congress government of 1991 as ‘half-hearted reforms’ where the economy was opened up not in the right way but according to the strictness imposed by the IMF. He said, ‘There was no progress until Atal Bihari Vajpayee of the BJP took over as the Prime Minister and the attention given by him on building infrastructure, roads and mobile telephones helped us a lot.’

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