Being home to one of the oldest and diverse civilization of the world, India proudly boasts a rich cultural history. The cultural excellence of Indian sub-continent reflects in all directions from handicrafts, and paintings to lavish linguistic heritage.
Along with two official languages namely Hindi (Devanagari Script), and English, India also have recognised 22 other languages as scheduled languages. Meanwhile, 121 languages are considered as mother tongues, with more than thousands of dialects.
India has nurtured two of the oldest languages of world, both Sanskrit and Tamil. Sanskrit which is considered as the most systematic language, has a sacred and special place in Indian hearts.
While the linguistic diversity of India makes it different from other nations, it has a fair share of controversies as well. The states of India are formed on basis of language spoken in the region. In that sense, the states which use Hindi as their regular medium of conversation holds a larger part of population.
On 14th of September, 1949, the Constituent Assembly of India adopted ‘Hindi’ written in Devanagari script as it’s official language. Interestingly, Hindi was adopted as the official language after a 3 year long struggle resulting in formation of Munshi-Ayyangar formula.
Munshi-Ayyangar formula established foundation of Hindi as the official language of India, along with English which was supposed to be continued for 15 years initially as an associate official language but later continued as de-facto formal language of India as per the government notification in 1965
The Government of India gradually shaped Hindi as standardised language by establishing a committee in 1954. The report published by the committee was released in year 1958, as A Basic Grammar of Modern Hindi. Bihar was the first state to adopt Hindi as it’s official language in the year 1881 by replacing “Urdu” which was formerly used by the colonial regime.
Hindi is often mistaken as the national language of India by people around the globe, but the Constitution of India have not given such status to any language. Being spoken by maximum North-Indian states such as Bihar, Delhi, Haryana, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh, the language enjoys a pan India presence.
Hindi Diwas, commemorates the contribution of Beohar Rajendra Simha, along with Hazari Prasad Dwivedi, Kaka Kelelkar, Maithali Sharan Gupt, and Seth Govind Das for their struggle to give ‘’Hindi” it’s deserved status.
Apart from India, Hindi is recognised as the third official court language by Emirates of Abu Dhabi. Fiji has also given official status to Hindi in 1997, along with South Africa which has also crowned the language under protected category and endorses promotion of the same. Similarly, as per 2011 census report of Nepal, Hindi is preferred as the first language by 77,569 people, and as second language by 12,25,990 people in the country.
(By Anirbaan Hritiq)