Is Hinglish ready for prime time?

PM Modi's popularization of Hinglish may give it a boost

PM Modi's popularization of Hinglish may give it a boost for acceptance as an official language
PM Modi's popularization of Hinglish may give it a boost for acceptance as an official language

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]H[/dropcap]inglish is a blend of Hindi and English, in particular a variety of English used by speakers of Hindi, characterized by frequent use of Hindi vocabulary or constructions. In recent years, due to an increase in literacy and connectivity, the interchange and mixing of languages has reached new heights, especially in social media, leading to the steady development and use of Hinglish.

We must also note that India is the birthplace of another such intermingling in medieval times, the Urdu language which is a blend of Hindi and Persian.

The Government of India under PM Narendra Modi, who in the words of Westernized Media – is the leader of a “Hindu nationalist Bhartiya Janata Party” – has ironically emerged as the greatest unofficial proponent of Hinglish.

Consider the nomenclature of Government Schemes under Narendra Modi government such as UDAY – Ujjwal DisCom Assurance Yojana – an ambitious scheme to reform Electricity Distribution in the country. The words – Ujjwal meaning Bright and Yojana meaning Plan are Hindi words and Discom – for Distribution Companies and Assurance are English words. Or consider the name of another Train Service which was announced in the Railway Budget, 2016 – Utkrisht Double-Decker Air-Conditioned Yatri express. Again the words ‘Utkrisht’ and ‘Yatri’ are proper Hindi words and obviously Double-Decker and Air-Conditioned are English words.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]A[/dropcap]lso consider, the Prime Minister’s recent Interview with Times Now journalist Arnab Goswami. Whilst Arnab asked all questions in a mix of primarily in English interlaced with Hindi and Narendra Modi replied primarily in Hindi with an occasional use of common English words in otherwise Hindi sentences. I have observed in PM Modi’s many speeches that he routinely uses common English words there instead of obscure Hindi words.

This is in stark contrast with the controversies faced by Narendra Modi government such as promotion of Sanskrit as Third language in CBSE Schools as against previously preferred option of German, a foreign European language.

Has the time come for India to recognise Hinglish as the Official Language of the country in the Constitution? I leave this question for readers to ponder over.

The author is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India.
Nirmal Ghorawat


  1. The main reason why India has not been able to excel in international arena is due to its following an obscure and retrograde language policy for 70 years .U S A which is a habitat to a much larger diversity of language, culture and ethnicity is able to sail along with everybody for their agreement on English as their language of communication long back.
    However post freedom India got mired in language controversy with pro Hindi zealots trying to force Hindi as the only national language to the detriment of others and anti Hindi hard heads stiffly opposing any such overtures.Even Hindu and Sanskrit got a bad name for their stupidity.
    It has also been accepted and realized lately that India can sell itself to others only on its strength in proficiency/knowledge of English.But the regional, caste,communal,linguistic law makers/leaders preach for Hindi one way or the other for their own supremacy at the same time encouraging English education to their progeny.
    I am all for proliferation/flourishing of all Indian languages/cultures but not to the exclusion of anyone of them. At the same time we must post haste adopt English as the language of mass communication inside the country with no more fighting or heart burn.
    If Modi and the Govt are ready to adopt Hinglish why not English itself for inter state /inter people communication along with use of local languages within each state?
    Please respond to ‘’.


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