K’taka: Bill mandating prominence to Kannada on sign boards passed

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K’taka: Bill mandating prominence to Kannada on sign boards passed

Bengaluru: The Kannada Language Comprehensive Development (Amendment) Bill, 2024, mandating use of Kannada on 60 per cent space of signboards of all business and commercial establishments was passed by the Karnataka Assembly on Thursday.

Minister for Kannada and Culture Shivaraj Tangadagi moved the Bill in the house and announced that the state government has been framing rules to enforce a law towards giving prominence to the local language in the state.

He also promised strict implementation and action against violations.

“The task force would be formed to ensure implementation of the law in every district, in addition to the enforcement wing. The problem of giving prominence to Kannada on sign boards is mostly in the state capital, Bengaluru. To deal with the situation, an app will be developed to receive complaints and committees will be formed at zonal levels in Bengaluru,” he said.

LoP R. Ashoka welcomed the bill and urged the government for strict implementation.

“Even the government wants 80 per cent of signages to be in Kannada, and we will support it. If not for the law, the businessmen would not care,” he stated.

On January 5, the Cabinet approved an Ordinance to amend the Kannada Comprehensive Development Act to mandate 60 per cent usage of Kannada language in signage.

The government had issued a deadline of February 28 for shops and commercial establishments to adhere to the rule.

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has started issuing notice to shops, malls, and commercial establishments in Bengaluru, instructing them to prominently display Kannada language on signboards by February 28.

Earlier, 53 people were arrested for their alleged involvement in the violence and vandalism during a protest in Bengaluru on December 27 that saw the removal and tearing down of English signboards from commercial outlets with a demand to give prominence to Kannada language.

A day after the protests, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had stated that Kannada language is supreme in the state, and “there was no compromise in this regard”.

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