Hindi Diwas is being observed across the country

Published: September 14, 2020

Hindi Diwas is being celebrated across the country today, September 14, 2020. The constituent assembly had adopted Hindi written in Devanagari as the official language of the country in 1949. Presently, Hindi is among the world most spoken languages. It is the first language of more than 520 million people across the world.

Background

  • Constituent assembly had adopted Hindi as one of the two official languages of the Republic of India.
  • Hindi was chosen as an official language by the efforts of Beohar Rajendra Simha, Hazari Prasad Dwivedi, Kaka Kalelkar, Maithili Sharan Gupt and Seth Govind Das.
  • On 14th September 1949, which happens to be the 50th birthday of Beohar Rajendra Simha, their efforts came to fruition and Hindi was adopted as an official language.
  • This decision of constitution assembly came into effect on the 26th of January 1950.
  • Under Article 343 of the Indian Constitution, Hindi has been written in Devanagari script.
  • There are 22 Scheduled languages of India in all and out of 22 only one language, that is Hindi, is officially used at Union level.

Article 343 (1)

The Article 343(1) of the constitution states that, “The official language of the Union shall be Hindi in Devanagari script. The form of numerals to be used for the official purposes of the Union shall be the international form of Indian numerals.”

Official Language

The constitution of India specifies two official languages namely Hindi and English. The business in Indian parliament is transacted in Hindi or in English. English is allowed for parliamentary proceedings, judiciary, communications between the Central Government and a State Government.

Can States specify their official language?

Yes, States have been given liberty and powers to specify their own official language through legislation.

Scheduled Languages

Apart from official languages, the constitution also recognises 22 regional languages which are called as scheduled languages. These languages has been listed in Schedule 8 of the constitution also, Article 344(1) and 351 specify these languages. English is not recognised as a scheduled language. Scheduled languages are  different from the Official Language. The 22 languages are- Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Oriya, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, Bodo, Santhali, Maithili and Dogri.

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