Statistical outline


India in numbers - A few selected area's

Officially recognised languages
Officially recognised languages There are 22 languages recognized by the Indian Constitution. These languages are: Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Dogri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili, Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Oriya, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Santhali, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu and Urdu.

Hindi is the official and main link language of India. Its homeland is mainly in the north of India, but it is spoken and widely understood in all urban centers of India. It is written in the Devanagri script, which is phonetic and, unlike English, is pronounced as it is written. Hindi is a direct descendant of Sanskrit through Prakrit and Apabhramsha. It has been influenced and enriched by Dravidian, Turkish, Farsi, Arabic, Portugese and English. It is a very expressive language. In poetry and songs, it can convey emotions using simple and gentle words. It can also be used for exact and rational reasoning.

From the 22 officially recognised languages only Bodo, Dogri, Kashmiri, Maithili,Sindhi & Sanskrit  are not an official state language in one of  the provinces.  The official language of Nagaland is English.
Spoken languages 325
Business languages English, Hindi and Urdu
Percentage of population who speaks a particular language
Hindi 38,71% A national language of India, accent and dialect differs with different regions but most of the Indians have a working knowledge of Hindi. It is written in a Devanagiri script.
Telegu 8,15% A language of Andhra Pradesh. It is numerically the biggest linguistic unit in India.
Bengali 7,74% An official language of West Bengal and Tripura, now spoken by nearly 200 million people in West Bengal, Tripura and in Bangladesh.
Marathi 7,46% An official language of Maharashtra. It has a fully developed literature of the modern type.
Tamil 6,72% The State language of Tamil Nadu. Tamil literature goes back to Centuries before the Christian era and is spoken by more than 73 million people. It belongs to the Dravidian language family.
Urdu 5,31% Official language of Jammu & Kashmir and is spoken by more than 28 million people in India. Urdu and Hindi have proceeded from the same source. Urdu is written in the Persio - Arabic script and contains many words from the Persian language.
Gujrati 4,99% It is the official language of Gujarat. 70 percent of the State's population speak Gujrati but it the most spread language not only in India but also abroad.
Kannada 4,04% It is the official language of Karnataka and is spoken by 65 percent of the state's population. It belongs to the Dravidian family.
Malayalam 3,90% The state language of Kerala. It is the youngest of all developed languages in the Dravidian family.
Oriya 3,44% A branch of the Indo-Aryan family, is the official language of the State of Orissa.
Punjabi 2,79% The official language of the State of Punjab. It is written in Gurmukhi script, created by the Sikh Guru, Angad.
Kashmiri 0,48% Though the language is mistaken as a state language of Kashmir only 55 per cent of the state's population speak Kashmiri.
Sindhi 0,29% Is spoken by a great number of people in the Northwest frontier of the Indian sub-continent comprising parts of India and Pakistan.
Assamese 0,01% A language of Assam that's spoken by nearly 60 percent of the State's population.
Bodo The Bodos are the largest ‘plain tribes’ in Assam. According to the 1991 census, 1.2 million people or 5.3% of the total population of Assam identified themselves as speakers of the Bodo language. The Bodo language recently adopted the Devanagari script formally, although the Roman script has also been extensively used- particularly due to the influence of Christian missionaries in that region. According to some scholars, the Bodo language had a script of its own called Deodhani.
Dogri The official language of Jammu & Kashmir. It is also spoken in Himachal Pradesh and some part of Punjab.
English Official language of Nagaland.
Konkani Konkani is the officail language of Goa and is spoken widely in the Konkan region consisting of Goa, south coastal Maharashtra, coastal Karnataka and Kerala, each region having a unique dialect and pronunciation style.
Maithili Maithali is the official language of Manipur.
Nepali Official language of Sikkim
Sanskrit The classical language of India that has lost it's value in the modern world. It is also one of the oldest languages in the world- perhaps the oldest to be recorded. All the ancient scripts are found to be written in the same language.
Santhili Santhali is spoken by the Santhals
Sanskrit The classical language of India that has lost it's value in the modern world. It is also one of the oldest languages in the world- perhaps the oldest to be recorded. All the ancient scripts are found to be written in the same language.
Source : Statistical Outline of India 2000 - 2001, Tata Services Limited, 
Department of Economics and Statistics
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