The National Education Policy (NEP) has not mentioned Mandarin — group of Sinitic Chinese languages — from the list of the examples of foreign languages that schools can offer to students. According to The Hindu, there is no mention of Mandarin from the NEP's final Policy document. However, Mandarin was present in the draft policy that was released in May 2019.
According to The Hindu, the 2019 draft policy version said, "A choice of foreign languages such as French, German, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese would be offered and available to interested students to choose."
However, as India-China tension rose over years, the final policy document mentioned, "In addition to high-quality offerings in Indian languages and English, foreign languages, such as Korean, Japanese, Thai, French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, and Russian, will also be offered at the secondary level….”
But Higher Education Secretary Amit Khare said that languages mentioned in the final policy are only a set of examples and not an exhaustive list of allowed. Students can learn other languages, The Hindu reported.
Chinese language Mandarin is also not on the list of languages offered at Class 10, Class 12 level by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE). However, a school can offer any other language as a third language option for classes 6-8.
The Hindu further reported that MEA has not responded to whether there is any planning of removing Mandarin from the CBSE curriculum.
Meanwhile, the education ministry has held discussions with MEA and the Indian Council for Cultural Relations to consult languages that were important to remain in the curriculum. Also, there may be security concerns with respect to including Mandarin to be taught in Indian institutions as some issues may have been under the scanner, The Hindu mentioned as sources saying.