For All Humanity

Our Republic is commemorating the 150th birth year of Sri Aurobindo Ghose, the 90th death anniversary of Bipin Chandra Pal, and the 103rd death anniversary of Bal Gangadhar Tilak. Long before 1905 the sharing of ideas and action plans between these three intellectual giants laid the foundations of our freedom struggle with clarity on the power of ‘Swaraj‘, boycott of foreign goods, nationalism, and Sanatana Dharma. Aurobindo Ghose, the youngest of this triumvirate, was clearly the most revolutionary and radical in his writings and activism

What really is in a name?

Though the post office is considered to be the organization that was Indianised first amongst all colonial-era institutions, its inertia in continuing with old names is quite intriguing.

Should we not fight harder for Sanskrit?

The only use of Sanskrit I saw was on religious occasions. The Hindu rituals are all conducted in Sanskrit as opposed to the common language spoken by the local followers.

The Queen’s Tongue?

By the end of the 16th century, the number of native speakers of English was said to have been between 5 and 7 million. Between the end of Queen Elizabeth I's reign in 1603 and the beginning of the reign of Elizabeth lI in 1952, the figure grew to be around 250 million. Now an estimated 1,500 million or more are exposed to English

A language to teach

In our country, we tend to disparage English because we are unwilling to go through the rigour of education. In the Hindi speaking states, there is an element of linguistic patriotism which gives a special status to the vernacular. In the south the vernaculars have now a special importance, but English is still valued as something unavoidable for a successful career

English, please

Due to unprecedented developments in the field of science and technology, we live in a global village and now English is not only the mother tongue of the people of the United Kingdom, it is a world language. So, in order to solve the language problem of India, let us use only English in higher education. Otherwise, Hindi-speaking people will get an undue advantage in competitive examinations

Accents are for the birds

There is no person alive who does not have an accent. The way you speak a language, say English, is heavily influenced by your first language if it is different from English. It is also influenced by where you come from, the level of education you have had, the social or economic class from which you spring, and even possibly the ethnic group to which you belong. We all have accents.

Fits and starts

It was therefore not surprising that tensions should erupt again, as France reacted with indignation to a recent British decision to include travellers returning from France and Malta, both popular destinations, within the ambit of those required to quarantine themselves.