Union Law Minister Veerappa Moily and Minister of State for Railways Muniyappa have come under fire from Kannada activists for taking the oath of office in English, instead of their mother tongue.
Enraged Kannada activists say the duo ignored their plea to take oath in Kannada. All the other 26 Lok Sabha members from Karanataka, they said, took their oath of office in Kannada, barring Moily and Muniyappa.
The Karnataka Raksha Vedike has decided to protest against the "anti-Kannada activities of two ministers" who ignored the advise of the state government-owned Kannada Development Authority and pro-Kannada organisations.
Kannada actor Mukyamanthri Chandru, who is also president of the Kannada Development Authority, has slammed the two ministers for their "anti-Kannada act" . Vedike president T A Naryana Gowda said the organisation would "show the ministers black flags" whenever they landed in Karnataka.
Incidentally, Moily is one of the respected writers in Kannada literature and has many novels and the critically acclaimed Ramayana to his credit.
Late J H Patel, the former state chief minister, was the first Parliamentarian to have taken oath in Kannada in 1967. Having won the Parliamentary elections from Shimoga, he took the permission of the then Speaker Neelam Sanjeeva Reddy and took oath of office in Kannada..
Chandru said he wrote to all MPs individually to take their oaths in Kannada. All MPs, including former prime minister Deve Gowda, former chief minister H D Kumara Swamy and state BJP president Sadananda Gowda, have taken their oath of office in Kannada.