In the ongoing #hindibeda campaign, the Hindi-speaking banking officials have been asked to learn Kannada in six months or face ouster. The Kannada Development Authority (KDA) chairperson Prof SG Siddaramaiah has written a letter to the regional managers of nationalised banks, scheduled banks and also rural banks to give priority to Kannada in banking administration.

Quoting the norms under the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection, the letter dictates that the banks should consider those who know the local language during the recruitment. Besides, the banking officials who refuse to learn Kannada or fail to use Kannada in their administration could be relieved from the duty, reports Prajavani.

"The banking facilities should be simple and it should be in Kannada. Even the day-to-day business should be held in Kannada. The Reserve Bank of India has clearly states this," the letter said, reports Prajavani. But majority of the banks have not implemented the local language policy. Besides, the banking officials have failed to use Kannada under the three-language policy. This has deprived many poor customers from availing various banking facilities, even at the rural banks.

Prof Siddaramaiah has asked the regional bank managers to submit a report on implementing the Authority's guidelines. "The authority will review the Kannada implementation in banks," reports Prajavani quoting Prof Siddaramaiah. Besides, the KDA has directed the banks to advertise their policies and annual reports in Kannada. The banks should follow the recommendations of Sarojini Mahishi report in prioritising the local people in recruitment.