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30th April 2022 (6 Topics)

A step that would trigger language phonocide

The Union Home Minister recently urged the use of Hindi as the lingua franca, rather than English, in inter­state communication. He suggested (reportedly at the Parliamentary Official Language Committee) that when citizens of States who speak other languages communicate with each other, it should be in the “language of India”

Exposing a myth

  • Census 2011- The 2011 Census data on languages, published last year, was heavily doctored. It presents Hindi as the ‘mother tongue’ of over 52 crore people by subsuming more than 5 crore claimants of Bhojpuri and more than 9 crore speakers of nearly 61 other languages — claimed as ‘other’ by their speech communities — from Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Haryana, Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.
  • Percentage of Hindi Speaker- The Hindi’ is probably spoken by not more than 30% of the population, but it is not the mother tongue for the remaining 70%.
  • Primus inter pares -Hindi is not a lingua franca for Indians; nor is it a dominant language. It is only a primus inter pares among numerous Indian languages.
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