Hindi or English

Some people recently asked me, "Why have you started posting so many of your posts in Hindi" ? And I kept quiet. Not because of a lack of reasons but because I had too many of them.

The first and foremost reason that came to my mind was an unsaid, subdued sense of revolt on my part against the shimmering facade of a continuously rotting Indian society. Now I could go on and on till eternity without breaking a sweat in reviling and blasting those moms who would rather say "betcha (polluted form of बेटा) corn खाने से stomach में ache हो जायेगा" in the hope that even if her "yet being anglicised" toddler catches a stomach ache on account of the comprehensive impenetrability of her recent gibberish, will atleast move in the right direction away from the poor and pathetic India which is hopelessly polluted by her mothertongue. I could give a million examples without saying an Ah! of those youngsters who try to mercilessly maul language and convert a "my" to "ma" and then to "moi" and finally to "mie" in the hope of forging their unique identity and sounding "khool (polluted form of cool) and who never for a second realize that all achievements both superficial and otherwise, rest on the strength of character and self belief and not on the crutches of a handicapped and bleeding language. I could laugh my ass off at those celebrities who do not anymore possess the talent of entirely speaking in their own language and have to resort to the familiarity of English every now and then. I could laugh surely but I won't as my heart cries out for the apathy which our regional languages have to face in our mass hypnotized nation.

But this is not the reason I have started posting so many of my posts in Hindi. The sole reason behind this is the dawn of my understanding of the subtle possibilities, the creative horizons and succint, inherent power of the Hindi language. The reading of Harivansh Rai Bachchan's नीड़ का निर्माण फिर, Mahadevi Verma's अतीत के चलचित्र, मधुशाला etc. has awakenden me to the immense facets of the language. I can safely say that whereas on one hand English seems to be better at expressing formality and logic, it can hardly match the silken fluidity of Hindi and Urdu at expressing emotions. It seems to me that this effect is do to the overexposure of English and some of its inherent weaknesses. Whereas we all have grown up studying English literature and are cognizant of its twists and turns, a simple verse in Hindi (Urdu) is enough to knock us off our sleep, sit up and take notice. Ironically, this is because of the unfamiliarity with the language which the Indian culture has introduced in us. Second reason is the simple fact that Hindi is better suited to rhymes and verses than English. One of my previous posts (Plight of an English poet) dwells on this. As an example, read these lines which describe the utter hopelssness and cynicism of a poet:

क्या करूं संवेदना लेकर तुम्हारी?
एक भी उच्छवास मेरा
हो सका किस दिन तुम्हारा?
उस नयन में बह सकी कब
इस नयन की अश्रुधारा?
सत्य को मूंदे रहेगी
शब्द की कब तक पिटारी ?
क्या करूं संवेदना लेकर तुम्हारी?

I would be more than happy to explain them if someone has any problems, but my point is that it is impossible to express something so subtle, so beautifully in English. Its just impossible. Atleast I haven't seen anything comparable till now.

Finally, I would end by urging that please give your languages the attention they deserve. Not because you owe anything to them or because it is your unsaid duty but because you would deprive yourselves of the immense treasures, those languages might be holding within. I will end by saying that I have nothing against English but I simply hate it when it becomes a status symbol in the hands of some non-discerning fools and ends up trampling and stomping our already tottering national language.

8 observations on “Hindi or English
  1. Amit

    Ha Ha! Abe hindi freak, desh kaisa lag raha hai? Wapas kab aa rahe ho? Mera airtime barbad ho raha hai tumhari anupasthiti me, paristhiti ki gambheerta samjh rahe ho kuch?

  2. Ankit

    paristhiti ki gambheerta ka poora gyaan hai mujhe. isliye is mahine ki 30 taareekh ko hi pahunch raha hoon... fir call time ka upyog badh jaayega tumhara...

  3. Anurup K.T

    Truly agree. I too think that personally I would prefer to read poetry in Urdu, Hindi & then English; in that order. There is something in the intracacies of language that makes it shine fora perticular purpose.

  4. Ankit

    @anurup: I really couldn't have put it any better... you have surmised the essence of my thoughts... now its time that 'seeker' received its first post 🙂

  5. vikas

    Tumhara blog pad kar ek alag hi anand aat hai. Do-chaar panktiyan 'Federer' par bhi likh do Hindi main 🙂 NYTimes wala article to dekha hi hoga..

  6. Ankit

    vikas babu... likhna to chaahta hoon lekin darr is baat ka lagta hai ki mera sankeern hindi gyaan federer ki aparampaar mahima ke saath nyaay nahin kar paayega :-)... aur new york times ka article nahin padha hai mainein... agar link de do to bahut ehsaanmand rahoonga


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