Mysuru: Minister for Primary and Secondary Education Tanveer Sait has expressed disappointment over criticism by the past and present Presidents of Kannada Sahitya Sammelana — Baragur Ramachandrappa and Chandrashekar Patil.
He was speaking at a technical session on ‘Kannada Samshodhane Mathu Vimarshe’ held yesterday as part of the 83rd Akhila Bharata Kannada Sahitya Sammelana being held in city.
Reacting to the appeal by Writer Chandrashekar Patil (Champa), the President of the Sammelana, to Siddharamaiah to drop him (Sait) or at least change his portfolio as he was not good enough as the Education Minister, Sait said his commitment to Kannada is unquestionable and added that he had a lot of pride in the language.
He said he had a lot of respect for Champa, but added that the latter should not have used the august forum of the Sammelana to level personal criticism against him. “I respect the right to freedom of expression. But Chief Minister Siddharamaiah would decide whether to retain me in the Cabinet or not,” he said.
“Champa has said that my attitude is not pro-Kannada. I need not learn about Kannada from anybody. I am a Kannadiga till my last breath,” he added.
President of the previous Sammelana Prof. Baragur Ramachandrappa, who is also the Chairman of the Text Book Revision Committee, had also expressed displeasure with Sait for not responding to his demand for a ‘Naada Patya’ (State syllabus).
Sait said, “I am satisfied with my achievements and contributions as Minister so far. Yesterday, I could not attend the inaugural function of the Sammelana as I was expected to be present in the Assembly Session in view of the expected tabling of a Private Bill to make it compulsory for children of government officials and employees to attend government schools.”
He said that the government is keen to bring changes in Karnataka Education Act and Law Department’s opinion is awaited. “I am ready for the discussion on my efforts and the government’s commitment for the development of Kannada,” he added.