Tuesday, March 18, 2008


I may be out of the line when i say this, but Hindi is no more the lingua franca of India. It is Hinglish. A mixture of Hindi and English. Hinglish is the spoken language of the nation. Check any program on Indian television, any interviews, any award functions; its Hinglish. They say that its an irony that Filmfare awards, that speaks of recognizing talent of "Hindi" movie industry are conducted in English.

Now i do not have problem with Hinglish. I am as guilty as anyone else if at all it is wrong.

But come to think of it, did Hindi ever stand a chance in a globalized world. To start with, more than half the country did not know to speak hindi when India officially broke free from the British. I still have a few South Indian friends who do not know to speak,read,write Hindi. In my native village, in rural Maharashtra, 95% did not understand Hindi. My grandmother never spoke in Hindi.
Hindi was predominantly used in the cow belt - UP,Bihar,Rajasthan,MP and some might say even in these states the dialect changed every few 100 miles.

So off the 28 odd states hardly 5 or 6 of them used Hindi as a spoken language. Add to these metros like Mumbai and Dehli where Hindi was prominently used. Even Kolkata and Madras did not use Hindi extensively except may be in Central government offices.

It's always a sad thing when a language dies. Hindi won't die i am sure. But it won't have the same position in the country's mind space it once had. My mother is a great proponent of correct usage of Hindi. She will surely be feeling sad with the way things have turned out for Hindi in India.

Nevertheless, such things cannot be controlled. You cannot fine someone for not speaking Hindi. It will be stupid. Like i remember how in our school once there was a campaign started where in if we were found talking in language other than English we would be fined. It did not work, obviously. If people find English or Hinglish more comfortable to communicate so be it. Good for them.

My only hope is, going forward, people do not start using Hinglish in Hindi News and Hindi Ads. That would be a new low.


Rathchakra said...

Totally agree, having a national language in itself is a silly thing (more so for a country as diverse as India).

Shriniwas said...

Check this out.... Hindi in Marathi ....style...!! What would you call this!!

1) Pahili baar, pohne gaya to kya hua maloom? Pahile paani mein shira, Phir Poha aur baad mein buda.

2) Ghai karo Bhaiyya, Nahi to Bus Jayegi aur humaari Panchaiit hoyengi!

3) Sarbat Mein Limbu Pilaa Kya?

4) Itna Mahaag kaise re tere yahaan? Woh Kopre ka bhaiyya to svasta deta hai!

5) Kaanda kaat ke, Chir ke mast omlete banane ka, aur upar se thoda kothimbir bhurbhuraneka!

6) Arre Baba, Gaadi savli mein laga!

7) Eh Bhai, Medu Wada shepret laana, sambar mein budake mat laana!

8) Kes ekdum bareek kaapo bhaiyya!

9) Khao Potbhar khao, laazo mat!

10) Dhaavte Dhaavte girya to kaadkan haat ka haad todya..!!

11) aisa karo woh college ka pudhla gate hai na...wahan se saral jao..aur fir dave haath ko hi hamara bangla hai..!!

12) kya bhaiyya...aajkal doodh bohot pattal pattal ata hai...haan!!!

13) bhajiwale bhaiyaa ...kya bhaav hai ho batate...???

14) woh jara paper andar puravni to dena vachne ko..!!