Pangs of Partition or the valour of Jhansi ki Rani or the spirit of sacrifice... one gets to read and rejoice it all in the works of Bhisham Sahni, Subhdra Kumari Chauhan or Gopal Prasad Vyas. Fortunately, our national language is not just a link to the glorious past but increasingly becoming the language of reading and writing; courtesy, our smart devices supporting Devanagari script! Just the last month, United Nations started an online news bulletin in Hindi, a language that sure is winning admirers all across the globe.
For academician Shabnam Sharma, works of Harivansh Rai Bachchan, Gulzar and Prasoon Joshi are a treasure. “Hindi is a mine of literature; just dig whatever you want — courage when you feel low, solace when you are fraught with struggles or just relish the beauty of the world around.” She sure gets irritated when people say with pride, ‘Oh, I can’t read or write Hindi’! “Poor them, they have no idea what treasure they are missing,” she avers.
“A language carries a culture forward; what makes India distinct, well Hindi,” opines Raj Kaur, who is pursuing a Master’s degree in Hindi from Panjab University. “As much as we claim our rights being youngsters, first we should shoulder our responsibility towards our mother tongue,” says Anita Sharma. Haar nahi manunga, rara nahi thanuga... lines by former Prime Minister, late Atal Bihari Vajpayee inspire her during times of conflict.
Sadly, Hindi is often shown down as compared to English, something Maninder Kaur fails to understand. “How can one feel ashamed of one’s mother tongue and give English the status that it enjoys; something that was rightly put forth in Irrfan Khan-starrer Hindi Medium?”
A scholar at Department of Hindi, Suambada Kumari, whose topic of research is writings by Indian diaspora in Hindi, shares. “In writings of Susham Bedi and Tejinder Sharma one feels the whiff of India on foreign soil. We should cherish our language.”
Although new literature is coming up each day, for Maninder Kaur, the best remains ‘partition literature’, which conveys the magnitude of tragedy in the true sense.
Nij bhasha unnati ahen is Praveen Malik’s motto. “The easiest way to finish a culture is to finish the language. Hindi is our identity, our pride,” says the boy.
- Hindi remains the language of conversation for the masses; says physics expert VK Jindal, “Hindi definitely makes more impact, contact and reach, so why not.” Brij Kishore Kuthiala, chairperson, Haryana State Higher Education Council, does most of his notation and even signatures in Hindi. “Not only is it my mother tongue, but most states that I work in are Hindi speaking. Also, I don’t know any other regional language. Most importantly, it’s the most scientific and rich language.”
- Senior resident at PGI, Dr Uttam Kumar Thakur often uses Hindi, “It helps in giving better medical instructions.” Not getting into the debate of English versus Hindi, he simply says, “I would use my language just like a German would his or French or Spanish theirs.”