Siliguri, 28th January: Darjeeling MP Raju Bista wrote to state Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, requesting her "immediate and urgent intervention" with regards to the inconvenience being faced by students from Siliguri, Terai and Dooars region who learn Nepali or Hindi as their main language besides English.
It is to be noted, the Bengali language has been made compulsory for all candidates in West Bengal government qualifying examinations, except for those who live in the hill sub-divisions of Darjeeling and Kalimpong District.
In this context, Bista maintained that the directive "puts the students from Siliguri, Terai and Dooars region of North Bengal who may be trained in Nepali or Hindi as their first or second language, at a great disadvantage."
In addition to this, the MP also wrote on the Nepali language not being included as an optional subject in WBCS Mains exams whereas languages like Pali, Persian, Arabic are included in the exam. "This has deprived a large section of students, who study Nepali for their Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from getting selected as WBCS officers, because their subject choice is not given," the letter stated.
Bista urged the CM to provide options for Gorkhas and Hindi speaking people from Terai and Dooars region to write the government qualifying exams in their mother tongue if they so desire, and for the Nepali language to be included as one of the Optional subjects for WBCS.