After facing flak, Delhi hospital withdraws order barring nurses from talking in Malayalam at work
Photo Credit: ANI

A day after barring the use of the Malayalam language, the Govind Ballabh Pant Institute of Post Graduate Medical Education and Research (GIPMER) in Delhi on Sunday withdrew its controversial circular, reported news agency ANI.

The hospital administration claimed that the circular was issued without their information, reported ANI.

The Govind Ballabh Pant Institute of Post Graduate Medical Education and Research (GIPMER) on Saturday had directed all its nursing personnel to use only Hindi and English for communication and said 'serious actions' would be taken against anyone found speaking in other languages.

The GIPMER on Saturday issued a circular asking its nursing staff not to use Malayalam at work as "maximum patients and colleagues do not know this language" which it said causes a lot of inconvenience.

The circular issued by the GIPMER, one of the leading facilities, had asked its nurses to use only Hindi and English for communication or face "strict action".

A circular issued by the Nursing Superintendent of the hospital said GIPMER had received a complaint against the use of the Malayalam language.

The circular says, "A complaint has been received regarding Malayalam language being used for communication in working places in GIPMER. Whereas maximum patient and colleagues do not know this language and feel helpless causing a lot of inconvenience".

"So, it is directed to all nursing personnel to use only Hindi and English for communication. Otherwise, serious action will be taken," it reads.

The circular has also drawn sharp criticism from Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Shashi Tharoor and KC Venugopal.

Taking to Twitter, Rahul Gandhi said: "Malayalam is as Indian as any other Indian language. Stop language discrimination!"

Congress Lok Sabha MP from Thiruvananthapuram Shashi Tharoor called the circular unacceptable, crude, offensive and a violation of the basic human rights of Indian citizens.

"It boggles the mind that in democratic India a government institution can tell its nurses not to speak in their mother tongue to others who understand them. This is unacceptable, crude, offensive and a violation of the basic human rights of Indian citizens. A reprimand is overdue," Tharoor tweeted.

Meanwhile, Congress MP KC Venugopal urged Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan to order an immediate withdrawal of the "bizarre" and "unconstitutional" circular issued by the authorities of GIPMER.

"I urge to Hon'ble health Minister @drharshvardhan to order an immediate withdrawal of the bizarre & unconstitutional circular issued by the authorities of GIPMER," Venugopal tweeted.

"Nurses from Kerala are sincerely discharging their duties across the world and taking care of the patients. Naturally, nurses belonging to the same region would speak the language among themselves as it is their mother tongue. It is illogical to assume that they would speak in their mother tongue to a person who can't speak that language. The circular is, undoubtedly, highly discriminatory and denying the basic fundamental right guaranteed by our constitution," the Congress MP stated in the letter.

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