Hereafter, if commercial establishments in the State do not display signboards in Telugu, they can be fined up to Rs 50,000. If the offence is repeated, the owner or management heads of the establishment will be put behind bars for three months. If the head of any government department or agency fails to adhere to the norms, he or she will be fined up to Rs 10,000.
The State released a government order to this effect on Tuesday and entrusted the Telugu Language Development Authority with the responsibility of implementing the GO.
Government department heads must use Telugu while corresponding with other departments, to avoid being fined up to Rs 5,000. Not using Telugu as an official language will lead to a fine of the same amount and any public servant who does not use Telugu while interacting with the masses will be fined Rs 10,000.Educational institutions not implementing Telugu syllabus or Telugu as a medium of instruction as prescribed by the government can be charged up to Rs 50,000. The heads of the bodies can be imprisoned for a period of not more than six months.
The TDP government has decided to set up a Telugu language development fund with a seed capital of Rs 25 crore. A specified percentage of tax collections may be allotted for the fund. The Telugu Language Development Authority will have a chairman, secretaries dealing with the general administration, law, labour, culture and tourism and education departments.
It will have up to four experts having special knowledge or practical experience in the fields of Telugu literature, administration and law as members. The authority is tasked with preparing projects for the development of the language and obtaining the government’s approval with or without modification every year. It has to identify the hurdles in the implementation of Telugu as the official language and take necessary measures to solve them, including the conversion of all registers and publications into Telugu in all public offices. It will also coordinate with the High Court and other courts in the State to deliver their judgments in Telugu.