New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Facing criticism from the opposition over his pitch for Hindi as the common language, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Wednesday clarified that he only said that Hindi should be the second language after mother tongue.

“I never asked for imposing Hindi over other regional languages and had only requested for learning Hindi as the 2nd language after one’s mother tongue. I myself come from a non-Hindi state of Gujarat. If some people want to do politics, its their choice,” he said.     

Shah’s comment last week on Hindi as a “unifying language”  for all Indians was read by many as a precursor to the government's bid to impose Hindi on non-Hindi speaking states, reviving a decades-old debate.

On Saturday, Shah pitched for a common language for the country and said as Hindi is spoken the most, it can unite the whole country.

The home minister also asked everyone to use their native languages as much as possible, but said efforts will be made to expand Hindi's reach to different parts of the country.

"India has many languages and every language has its importance. But it is absolutely necessary that the entire country should have one language that becomes India's identity globally," he said in a series of tweets in Hindi.

Shah said that today, if any language which can unite the country, it is Hindi that is spoken the most.

"I want to appeal to people to promote their native languages but also use Hindi to make the dream of Bapu (Mahatma Gandhi) and Sardar (Vallabhbhai) Patel of one language come true," he tweeted.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta