The institute was formed in 1938 by a group of Chatsworth, banana and vegetable Farmers to run classes in Tamil, Telugu, Hindi and Urdu, and it is concerned there is minimal teaching of Indian languages taking place. 8000 pupils enrolled to study Indian languages when they were first offered in 1984.
“By 1996, the enrollment for Indian languages increased to 63000 learners - with 3000 taking Gujarati, 5000 Telugu, 15000 Urdu, 19000 Hindi and 21000 opting to study Tamil. It was smooth sailing and Indian languages flourished until drastic changes occurred,” said Pillay. Strictures in the form of Outcomes Based Education, the National Curriculum Statement and, more recently, the Curriculum Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS) dealt a cruel blow to the continued existence of Indian languages in the curriculum. Pillay said these policies did not allow inclusion of Indian languages in the syllabus, thus relegating their status. With the introduction of CAPS, every subject in each grade has a single, comprehensive and concise policy document that provides details on what teachers need to teach and assess on a grade-by-grade and subject-by-subject basis. Pillay said Indian languages were not catered for under CAPS. “Sadly, and badly, the register for Indian languages now reflects an estimated 19500 learners. Also a major factor in the reduction of numbers is the expulsion of Indian languages from being taught during normal school time to after-school hours,” he said, adding without the study of mother tongue languages, the understanding and appreciation of great literary works would be lost to future generations. “It is disturbing and disheartening that at the end of 2016, only 177 learners sat for the matric exams in Indian languages.”
The political History of the Country saw the devastating effect of the Group Areas Act put into action. The forced removal of the Indian community caused the disintegration of settled Communities into areas barren of facilities. Concerned intellectuals and social workers had regular meetings to form a national body so as to safeguard the welfare of the Tamil people.

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