Union Minister Smriti Irani and BJP President Amit Shah took oath as members of Rajya Sabha today. Mrs Irani drew attention of the house as she took her pledge in Sanskrit. Said to be the language of Gods (dev-Bhasha), Sanskrit is included in India’s Constitution in a list of the country’s 22 official languages. However, it largely remains unused as it’s difficult for a common man to use the language owing to its sophisticated (even for a Hindi speaker) vocabulary. There is no denying that most of the modern Indo-Aryan languages have either evolved from Sanskrit or they have had significant grammatical and vocabulary influence from the classical language.
The BJP led government at Centre is going extra-mile to promote Sanskrit and Hindi. Most of its schemes are are named in Sankritised Hindi – Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana, Swachh Bharat, Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana, Atal Pension Yojana and so on. Even the acronyms like MUDRA (Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency) are Sanskrit.
After the stunning victory in Uttar Pradesh assembly elections in March this year, several BJP MLAs took oath in Sanskrit. MLA Sanjay Sharma, basic education minister Anupama Jaiswal, Suresh Srivastava (Lucknow West), Neeraj Bora (Lucknow North), Satish Dwivedi, Chandrika Prasad Upadhyaya, Pawan Kedia, Dhananjay Kannaujia, Anand Swaroop Shukla, Sunil Verma, Mahendra Singh and Shashank Trivedi, they all had their pledge in Sanskrit.
After BJP stormed to power in 2014, Several BJP MPs including External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj took her oath in fluent Sanskrit. She was followed by Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti and Health Minister Harsh Vardhan. East Delhi MP Maheish Girri, West Delhi MP Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma and Kangra (Himachal Pradesh) MP Shanta Kumar, Gorakhpur MP Yogi Adityanath, Gautam Buddhanagar MP Mahesh Sharma and Meerut MP Rajendra Agrawal also took oath in Sanskrit. In 2009, BJP’s Sumitra Mahajan took pledge in Sanskrit.