Pros And Cons:

"One State, one language" is a universal feature of almost every State. Examine the constitution of Germany, France, Italy, England, and U.S.A. "One State, one language" is the rule.

Wherever there has been a departure from this rule there has been a danger to the State. The illustration of the mixed States are to be found in the old Austrian Empire and the old Turkish Empire. India cannot escape this fate if it continues to be a congery of mixed States.

The reasons why a unilingual State is stable and a multi-lingual State unstable are quite obvious. A State is built on fellow feeling. What is this fellow-feeling ? To state briefly it is a feeling of a corporate sentiment of oneness which makes those who are charged with it feel that they are kith and kin. This feeling is a double-edged feeling. It is at once a feeling of fellowship for ones own kith and kin and anti-fellowship for those who are not one's own kith and kin. It is a feeling of " consciousness of kind " which on the one hand, binds together those who have it so strongly that it over-rides all differences arising out of economic conflicts or social gradations and, on the other, severs them from those who are not of their kind. It is a longing not to belong to any other group.

The existence of this fellow-feeling is the foundation of a stable and democratic State. This is one reason why a linguistic State is so essential. But there are other reasons why a State should be unilingual. There are two other reasons why the rule "one State, one language" is necessary.

One reason is that democracy cannot work without friction unless there is fellow-feeling among those who constitute the State. Faction fights for leadership and discrimination in administration are factors ever present in a mixed State and are incompatible with democracy.

The present State of Bombay is the best illustration of the failure of democracy in a mixed State. With Bombay as a mixed State for the last 20 years, with the intense enmity between the Maharashtrians and Gujaratis, only a thought less or an absent-minded person could put forth such a senseless proposal.

The former State of Madras is another illustration of the failure of democracy in a mixed State. The formation of a mixed State of United India and the compulsory division of India into India and Pakistan are other illustrations of the impossibility of having democracy in a mixed State.

We therefore want linguistic States for two reasons. To make easy the way to democracy and to remove racial and cultural tension.

But the dangers of a Linguistic state can be stated as follows. A linguistic State with its regional language as its official language may easily develop into an independent nationality. The road between an independent nationality and an independent State is very narrow. If this happens, India will cease to be Modern India we have and will become the medieval India consisting of a variety of States indulging in rivalry and warfare.

Sankalp Unit