Madras High Court disposed of a batch of public interest litigation petitions which challenged the classical language status accorded to Kannada, Telugu, Malayalam and Odia. A Chennai-based senior advocate R. Gandhi had moved the High Court challenging the decision, alleging undue influence in the grant of status.
Refusing to accept the petitioner’s contention that the prominence of the Tamil language would be lost if it was treated on a par with other languages that had been conferred classical status, the Bench said: “We do not agree with the petitioner. The prominence of a language would not depend on the development or fall of another language.”
Making it clear that only experts can verify whether the languages satisfy the norms set for according the classical status, the First Bench of Chief Justice S.K. Kaul and Justice R. Mahadevan said, “Having been satisfied, they [the expert body] have recommended for declaration of the languages in consideration to be classical. The facts which made the expert body to recommend the promulgation of such declaration have also been placed before us … As such we do not find any reason to interfere with the impinged declaration.”