The first World Hindi Conference was held on January 10 in 1975. To commemorate this special day, World Hindi Day is celebrated on the same date every year. The first World Hindi Conference was attended by 30 countries and was inaugurated by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in Nagpur. On World Hindi Day, the Ministry of External Affairs conducts events through its missions worldwide to spread the greatness of the Hindi language. The Department of Official Language – Rajbhasha also organises several special programmes to mark the day.
On World Hindi Day, Here Are 10 Interesting Facts About Hindi Language
- Being used by almost 500 million people around the world, Hindi is the fourth most-spoken language of the world.
- There are 22 Scheduled languages of India, of which, two are officially used at the Union government level: Hindi and English. States can, however, use any of the other scheduled languages as well.
- Every year, 14 September is observed as Hindi Day or Hindi Diwas in India. It was on this day in 1949 that Hindi in the Devanagari script was adopted as the country’s official language under Article 343 of the Indian Constitution. English was also given the status of an official language, initially for 15 years. This was subsequently extended under provisions of the Official Languages Act, 1963.
- In 1881, Bihar became the first Indian state to adopt Hindi as its official language, replacing the earlier Urdu. Later, other states like Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Himachal Pradesh also adopted Hindi as their official languages.
- Apart from India, Hindi is widely spoken in countries like Mauritius, Nepal, Singapore, Fiji and the Caribbean countries. In Guyana, Trinidad, and Suriname, Hindi still remains to be a popular language.
- Yoga that has been adopted universally by the people and finds its roots in India and is a Hindi word. Other popular Hindi words include bungalow, cheetah, chutney, karma and avatar.
- Mahatma Gandhi used Hindi to bind Indian together during the struggle for independence. Therefore, Hindi is also known as the “Language of Unity”. The word “Swadeshi” also appears in the Oxford Dictionary.
- Hindi is among the seven Indian languages that can be used to make the web address of websites. The other six languages are Punjabi, Urdu, Tamil, Telugu, Gujarati and Bengali.
- Hindi letters are illusion-free which means that the mirror image of any letter will never result in another letter like some English letters such as m & w, a & e and d & b. Hindi is also phonetic as it is spoken the way it is written.
- Narmad, the Gujarati poem is the first artistic work in which Hindi is referred to as the national language of India. The Prem Sagar by Lallu Lal is the first published book in the modern Hindi language. The first Hindi film is Raja Harishchandra made by Dadasaheb Phalke.