An exchange between two commentators turned into a controversy during the Ranji Trophy match between Karnataka and Baroda at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Thursday.
Broadcasters Rajinder Amarnath and Sushil Doshi were commentating for Hotstar when they stated that everyone in India should know Hindi, reported Sportstar. The duo were discussing Indian cricket legend Sunil Gavaskar's work as a Hindi commentator when Rajinder, who is a former Harayana cricketer and the brother of former Indian all-rounder Mohinder Amarnath, said, "In India, every Indian should know Hindi. It's our mother tongue; for us, there is no greater language than this."
Sushil Doshi, who is a veteran commentator, went on to say that a player shouldn't be proud of speaking in Hindi since "you live in India, you will obviously speak the language of India".
The comments, however, outraged social media users, who were quick to call it ‘Hindi imposition’.
Sitting in Bengaluru and commentating on a match between Karnataka and Gujarat, who swear by Kannada and Gujarati respectively, these commentators try to impose Hindi. https://t.co/8Ggcw6fvJP— Madhu Jawali (@MadhuJawali) February 13, 2020
Did this lunatic commentator just say “Every Indian should know Hindi” ? What on earth do you think you’re @BCCI ? Stop imposing Hindi and disseminating wrong messages. Kindly atone. Every Indian need not know Hindi #StopHindiImposition #RanjiTrophy #KARvBRD pic.twitter.com/thS57yyWJx— Ramachandra.M/ ರಾಮಚಂದ್ರ.ಎಮ್ (@nanuramu) February 13, 2020
Rajinder later apologised on air stating that he deeply regretted the statement and that he did not intend to impose a language. "The intention was never to enforce a language. All the languages of the country are a part of the country. Everybody loves to speak his language. My intention was not to hurt anyone," he said as per Sportstar.
The comments were made during the second day of play and in the seventh over of Baroda's second innings. It comes just days after a light-hearted incident in India's tour of New Zealand in which KL Rahul and Manish Pandey, batting at the crease, were heard talking in Kannada. Their conversation which had words like "Odi Odi Ba" (come running), "Bartheera" (will you come), "Beda Beda" (no no) and "Ba ba" (come) must have pleased the cricket buffs in Karnataka as it was clearly audible on the stump mic.
With IANS inputs