Canadian MP Chandra Arya Makes Speech In Kannada at Parliament, Receives High Praise

Chandra Arya, a Karnataka-born Canadian MP, addressed the Canadian Parliament in his native tongue Kannada, and the video has since gone viral. Chandra Arya took to Twitter to share this video and captioned it: “I spoke in my mother tongue (first language) Kannada in Canadian parliament. This beautiful language has long history and is spoken by about 50 million people. This is the first time Kannada is spoken in any parliament in the world outside of India.”

Arya said it was a delight to be able to speak in Kannada, his home tongue, in the Canadian Parliament and that it was a proud moment for Kannadigas during his address.

Dr Rajkumar sang a song by Kuvempu (considered one of Karnataka’s greatest poets of the twentieth century) towards the end of Chandra Arya’s address. Remembering both in his speech, Chandra Arya said, “Elladaru iru enthadaru iru endendigu nee Kannadavaagiru”, which translates wherever you are, however you are, be a Kannadiga forever.

This move has gained international attention on the internet and received applause from Chandra Arya’s Canadian colleagues. Leaders of Chandra Arya’s home country have praised his gesture.

Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai praised Arya’s speech, saying it has spread Kannada’s essence over the world. “Heartfelt compliments to Chandra Arya for proving that however big one may grow in his life, he should always remember his roots. Elladaru Iru Enthadaru Iru, Endendigu Nee Kannadavaagiru,” he tweeted.

Minister for Large and Medium-scale Industries Murugesh R Nirani said, “It is an absolute honour to see the language of our land, Kannada being spoken in the Canadian Parliament. It fills us all with immense pride.” Karnataka Congress President D K Shivakumar said, “It makes me happy to see our great Kannada language spoken in the Canadian parliament. A great idea by Sri Chandra Arya. Kannadigas across the world must fly high the flag of our mother tongue.”