SHILLONG | August 6, 2018: On the need to appoint local residents, who are proficient in the local language, the Meghalaya Rural Bank Officers’ Association has written an open letter to BJP parliamentarian Rajiv Pratap Rudy.
He also questioned the controversial amendment of the language proficiency clause by the Union finance ministry.
Earlier, the association had sent a petition to Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K. Sangma and stated that to be proficient in local language one has to read the language up to class VIII or above, in boards of education or schools recognized by the government.
“Even for a person speaking local language to be proficient, one should read that language for minimum 10 years. That is two years for pre-school and eight years from classes I to VIII,” the association said.
“On what basis shall a non-local language-speaking person be proficient in a local language within a few months? This is next to impossible and is an absurd idea,” the association’s general secretary, Michael L’Chyne, said.
On Wednesday, referring to Rudy who raised the issue of posting of qualified youths from the Indian heartland in Meghalaya Rural Bank, in Parliament, Chyne said, “We are perturbed that your honour has not realized that the crux of the matter is not that the authorities concerned are arbitrarily denying the posting. But it is the flawed appointment rules, amended by the ministry of finance, whereby one of the essential qualifications, that proficiency in local language was over-diluted after its existence for over 40 years since the Regional Rural Bank Act, 1976, was passed by Parliament.”
Chyne, also the joint general secretary of the All India Regional Rural Bank Officers’ Federation urged Rudy to ponder, as regional rural banks were established through an Act of Parliament to cater to the poor, unlettered, uneducated and impoverished section of a specific region or state of the country.
He said, “That is why the local language proficiency clause in the appointment rules, was perhaps, made as one of the essential qualifications. Had the then law-makers intended that regional rural banks are to cater on an all-India basis. I think they would not have enacted the Regional Rural Bank Act; and instead, perhaps, they would have named the act as the Rural Bank of India Act and would not have stipulated proficiency in local language as one of the essential qualifications. Language proficiency was perhaps included as these banks are meant to serve a specific region/state only, with a well-demarcated area of operation in the country with their distinct and diverse nomenclatures easily identifiable.”