National Language of India: Key Spoken & Official Languages list

May 10, 2024

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India is a country of different cultures. The 28 Indian states and 8 union territories of India make up a large population of people speaking different Indian languages. The question here arises, what is the national language of India? Most countries have one national language that is spoken by the majority of people in the country. India, however, our country does not have an official Indian national language. In place of the national language, there are 22 official languages of India( including Hindi and English) Let us find out more.

Is the National Language of India Hindi?

No, there is no national language of India according to the Indian constitution. Therefore, Hindi is not India’s national language. India does not have a national language, but Hindi and English are both recognized and official Indian languages.

As per Article 343 of the Indian constitution, Hindi (in Devanagari script) along with English are the official languages of India.

Indian Official Language

India, in particular, is a diverse country with hundreds of languages thus making it hard to have one national language. Here, national language refers to a language spoken by a vast majority in the country. Instead of a single national language, India has an official language. The Official Languages Act of 1963 mentions two languages—Hindi and English that may be used for the official purpose of the Union of India for the transaction of business in Parliament; for any Indian state act; and a certain purpose in the Hindi High Court.

Official languages are generally used in Government duties and tasks. Hindi is spoken by a large majority of the people including English. Therefore, the Government asked for the use of Hindi and English along with an additional 22 languages of India that also have recognition by the Constitution.

The official website of the Prime Minister’s Office of India publishes its official information in 11 Indian official languages. This includes Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Malayalam, Meitei, Marathi, Odia, Punjabi, Tamil, and Telugu in addition to English and Hindi.

Indian Official Langauge List

As per the Eighth schedule of the Indian Constitution, there are 22 official languages of India. These languages, in particular, have the status of “recognition” from the constitution. Moreover, these languages also include the official languages of India ie. Hindi, and English.

  • Assamese
  • Bengali
  • Bodo
  • Dogri
  • Gujarati
  • Hindi
  • Kannada
  • Kashmiri
  • Konkani
  • Maithili
  • Malayalam
  • Manipuri
  • Marathi
  • Nepali
  • Odia
  • Punjabi
  • Sanskrit
  • Santali
  • Sindhi
  • Tamil
  • Telugu
  • Urdu

History of National Language of India

The three official languages of India in colonial times were English, Urdu, and Hindi. The government allowed the parliament to continue using English after the constitution of India went into effect in 1950. It brought up the question: should English be the national language of India? However, a few years later, resistance from non-Hindi-speaking people of the country caused the government to make both Hindi and English official languages.

There might not be a national language of India but there are hundreds of Indian languages spoken across the nation.

Also Read: List of Presidents of India

FAQs

Is there any national language of India?

There is no formal Indian national language. However, two official languages are meant for use at Government offices and courts, English and Hindi. Additionally, to cater to the rest of the population, there are 22 languages to which the constitution has given recognition to.

Why Hindi is not our national language?

Hindi is our official language along with English. India is a diverse country where the spoken language changes in each state. Getting all of the population to learn and also speak Hindi would be a hard task. Therefore, the constitution gave the status of official language to Hindi.

What is the national language of India as per the Constitution?

The Indian constitution has, importantly, no national language. There are, instead, two official languages, Hindi and English. Both of these languages are for use in Government official work. Along with this, 22 other languages are also stated in the Constitution that have recognition.

What is the national and official language?

There are two official languages: Hindi and English.

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