India is a democratic country with varied ethnic cultures, traditions, languages. India has a diverse list of spoken languages among different groups of people. It has been rightly saying about the language of India, “Indian language changes every few kilometers just like the water”. No wonder, this is true in every sense. India being a union of states with 28 states and 8 Union Territories has a variety of languages that changes every km. Since the beginning of the Constitution, there have been several debates on the issue of the national language. However, India does not have a national language. There is a difference between a national language and an official language. This post shall enlighten you about the national language of India.
National Language of India
Our Consitution did not give the status of national language to any one language. Hindi was definitely declared as the national language. But, Hindi is a language spoken by only 40% of the Indian population. So, this would be a problem for the rest of the majority of the population as everybody would be required to learn Hindi and this is not possible at all. The Constitution of India has stipulated the usage of Hindi and English to be the two official languages of communication for the national government. Additionally, it contains a list of 22 official languages (including Hindi and English). These languages are entitled to representation on the Official Language Commission, and a candidate in an examination conducted for national government service may opt to take the exam in any of these languages.
Official Language of India
Two languages are chosen to be the official languages used by the central administration:
- Hindi is the language used by the Central Government as per Article 343 when communicating with the states of the Hindi Belt.
- English is the Associate official language and the language to be used while communicating with the states.
List of Official Scheduled Language of India
According to the Eighth Schedule of the Indian Constitution, 22 languages have been chosen to be the scheduled language of India. Hindi and English are the official languages.
|Sr. No||Language||Recognition in state|
|1||Assamese||Assam, Arunachal Pradesh|
|2||Bengali||West Bengal, Tripura|
|4||Dogri||The official language of Jammu and Kashmir|
|5||Gujarati||Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, Gujarat|
|6||Hindi||Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Bihar, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Mizoram, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and West Bengal|
|Kashmiri||Jammu and Kashmir|
|9||Konkani||Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, and Kerala (The Konkan Coast)|
|11||Malayalam||Kerala, Lakshadweep, Puducherry|
|13||Marathi||Maharashtra, Goa, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu|
|14||Nepali||Sikkim and West Bengal|
|15||Odia||The official language of Orissa|
|16||Punjabi||The official language of Punjab and Chandigarh, 2nd official language of Delhi and Haryana|
|17||Sanskrit||Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand|
|18||Santali||Spoken by Santhal people mainly in the state of Jharkhand as well as in the states of Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Mizoram, Odisha, Tripura, West Bengal|
|19||Sindhi||Gujarat and Maharashtra, especially Ulhasnagar|
|20||Tamil||Tamil Nadu, Puducherry|
|21||Telugu||Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and Puducherry|
|22||Urdu||Jammu and Kashmir, Telangana, Jharkhand, Delhi, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal|