Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has taken a swipe at Opposition leader Bilawal Bhutto Zardari for addressing Parliament in English, saying this was an insult to the country’s “90 per cent population” which cannot speak the western language.
Addressing the inauguration ceremony of the Hyderabad University on Thursday, Mr Khan said that despite Urdu being the national language, public speakers choose to speak in English.
“Bilawal delivers his speeches in English when addressing the parliament. This is patronising and insulting to the more than 90 per cent of Pakistanis who can’t speak English,” he was quoted as saying by the Express Tribune.
The 30-year-old Oxford educated chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), on Thursday delivered a speech in English while addressing party supporters at an event to commemorate the death anniversary of PPP founder Zufliqar Ali Bhutto, the paper reported.
“We know the majority don’t understand the language. Why do we then speak in English on public forums in the country despite knowing Urdu?” he asked.
Mr Khan said there was an overriding sense of inferiority among such people who believe they won’t be considered educated unless they speak in English.
“The trend dated back to the era of Pervez Musharraf as part of his “enlightened moderation” policy. In that period, we picked up certain western values and habits that are an aberration for our society. We need to change this trend,” he said.
Get the latest election news, live updates and election schedule for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 on ndtv.com/elections. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram for updates from each of the 543 parliamentary seats for the 2019 Indian general elections.