The solution of the difficultieslater, in 1955, in his 'Thoughts on Linguistic States' dr.ambedkar had recommended that Hindi be made the official language of all states. but what he said in 1948, that the official language of a state should be different from the provincial language, should that principle have been applied to hindi speaking states too? dr.ambedkar didn't miss the provincialism or chauvinism of the hindi speaking states, and i feel he'd have talked more about it later, after the drive to impose hindi on the south in the 1960s by the central government. unfortunately, he passed away soon after the publication of his 'Thoughts on Linguistic States'. would he have stressed on the need to impose a language different from hindi as the official language of the hindi speaking states if he had lived into the sixties?
9. If the problem must be dealt with immediately what is to be the solution ? As has already been pointed out, the solution must satisfy two conditions. While accepting the principle of Linguistic Provinces it must provide against the break-up of India's unity. My solution of the problem therefore is that, while accepting the demand for the re-constitution of Provinces on linguistic basis, the constitution should provide that the official language of every Province shall be the same as the official language of the Central Government. It is only on that footing that I am prepared to accept the demand for Linguistic Provinces.
10. l am aware of the fact that my suggestion runs counter to the conception of Linguistic Provinces which is in vogue. It is that the language of the Province shall be its official language. I have no objection to Linguistic Provinces. But I have the strongest objection to the language of the Province being made its official language where it happens to be different from the official language of the Centre. My objection is based on the following considerations:
(1) The idea of having a Linguistic Province has nothing to do with the question of what should be its official language. By a Linguistic Province, I mean a Province which by the social composition of its population is homogeneous and therefore more suited for the realisation of those social ends which a democratic Government must fulfil. In my view, a Linguistic Province has nothing to do with the language of the Province. In the scheme of Linguistic Provinces, language has necessarily to play its part. But its part can be limited to the creation of the Province, i.e., for demarcation of the boundaries of the Province. There is no categorical imperative in the scheme of Linguistic Provinces which compels us to make the language of the Province its official language. Nor is it necessary, for sustaining the cultural unity of the Province, to make the language of the Province its official language. For, the cultural unity of the Province, which already exists, is capable of being sustained by factors other than language such as common historic tradition, community of social customs, etc. To sustain Provincial cultural unity which already exists it does not require the use of the Provincial language for official purposes. Fortunately for the Provincialists there is no fear of a Maharashtrian not remaining a Maharashtrian because he spoke any other language. So also there is no fear of a Tamilian or an Andhra or a Bengali ceasing to be a Tamilian, Andhra or Bengali if he spoke any other language than his own mother-tongue. [emphasis mine].
again, from his statement to the Linguistic Provinces Commission:
SHOULD THE MAHARASHTRA PROVINCE BE FEDERAL OR UNITARY?that's quite clear. in 1948, dr.ambedkar was clearly in favour of 'all areas which are contiguous and which speak the same language should be forced' into a single province. which means he wouldn't have supported the idea of a separate telangana in 1948.
20. I will now turn to what are known to be points on which there is controversy. There is no controversy regarding the unification of Maharashtra into one Province. The controversy relates to the way it should he brought about. One view is that the new Maharashtra Province should be a unitary Province, with a single legislature and a single executive. The other view is that Maharashtra should be a Federation of two sub-provinces, one sub-province to consist of the Marathi-speaking districts of the Bombay Presidency and the other of the Marathi-speaking districts of the present Province of the Central Provinces and Berar. The idea of creating sub-Provinces has originated from the spokesmen of the Marathi-speaking districts of Central Provinces and Berar. I am satisfied that it is only the wish of a few high-caste politicians who feel that in a unified Maharashtra their political careers will come to an end. It has no backing from the people of e fact that it gives me an opportunity to enunciate what I regard as a very vital principal. When it is decided to create a Linguistic Province, I am definitely of opinion that all areas which are contiguous and which speak the same language should be forced to come into it. There should be no room for choice nor for self-determination. Every attempt must be made to create larger provincial units. Smaller provincial units will be a perpetual burden in normal times and a source of weakness in an emergency. Such a situation must be avoided. That is why I insist that all parts of Maharashtra should be merged together in a single province. [emphasis mine].
would he have supported telangana in 1955, when he wrote his 'Thoughts on Linguistic States'? he was more concerned with the smaller size of the southern states on an average, in terms of population, in relation to northern states.
more from his statement to the Linguistic Provinces Commission:
44. Secondly, the surplus from Bombay is not consumed by Maharashtra alone but is consumed by the whole of India. The proceeds of the Income-tax, Super-tax, etc. which Bombay pays to the Central Government are all spent by the Central Government for all-India purposes and is shared by all other Provinces. To Prof. Vakil it does not matter if the surplus of Bombay is eaten up by United Provinces, Bihar, Assam, Orissa, West Bengal, East Punjab and Madras. What he objects to is Maharashtra getting any part of it. This is not an argument. It is only an exhibition of his hatred for Maharashtrians. [emphasis mine].how about the revenue surpluses from hyderabad which the telangani separatists claim are being used to fund development in other regions? following dr.ambedkar's common sensical logic, one could say: the surplus from hyderabad is not consumed by andhra pradesh alone but is consumed by the whole of India. and: granting that, hyderabad goes with a new telangana state, what i don't understand is how the separatists are going to prevent andhra-rayalaseema from getting a share of hyderabad's surplus revenue?
45. Granting that, Bombay was made into a separate Province, what I don't understand is how Prof. Vakil is going to prevent Maharashtra from getting share of Bombay surplus revenue. Even if Bombay is made separate Province, Bombay will have to pay income-tax, super-tax, etc. and surely Maharashtra will get a part of the revenue paid by Bombay to the Centre either directly or indirectly. As I have said the argument has in it more malice than substance.
finally, one last point from the statement:
59. To reconstitute Provinces on economic basis—which is what is meant by rational basis—appears more scientific than reconstituting them on linguistic basis. However, unscientific linguistic reorganization of Provinces I cannot see how they can come in the way of rational utilization of economic resources of India. Provincial boundaries are only administrative boundaries. They do not raise economic barriers for the proper utilization of economic resources. If the position was that the resources contained within a Linguistic Province must only be explained by the people of the Province and no other than it could no doubt be said that the scheme of Linguistic Provinces was mischievous. But such is not the case. So long as Linguistic Provinces are not allowed to put a ban on the exploitation of the resources of the people by any body capably of wishing to exploit them a Linguistic Province will yield all the advantages of a rationally planned Province. [emphasis mine].so, what would dr. ambedkar have said about all the noise being made by the separatists that telangani resources, like coal from singareni, are being 'exploited' by people from andhra-rayalaseema? as you can see, dr. ambedkar would have approved of the 'rational exploitation' of resources. if the rest of india can exploit resources from bombay high, or jharkhand or assam, why should there be any objection to resources from telangana being used to meet power needs in andhra-rayalaseema? they're not being 'stolen', they're being sold. just as they're being sold to power plants in karnataka, maharashtra and other parts of the country.
how i wish the separatists would read dr. ambedkar's views with open eyes, and minds, before putting words into his mouth!!