Monday, 20 May 2013

Hindi dailies rule the newspaper landscape

16,370,000. That is the readership of the most widely read daily in India, Dainik Jagran. This figure comes from the latest  available data of the Indian Readership Survey. The data is for the fourth quarter of 2012. 

At more than 16 million, the readership of Dainik Jagarn is comparable to the population of the Nederlands. The second most popular Indian daily is Dainik Bhaskar (14.5 million). Trailing them both is Hindustan (12.2 million).

Malyalam is spoken in the tiny South Indian state of Kerala. So, Malyala Manorama is doing a great job. With 9.7 million readers, this daily newspaper is more popular than Amar Ujala (Hindi, 8.5 million) and The Times of India (7.6 million). This may be due to the high literacy rate (more than 90 per cent) in the state. There are two Malyalam newspapers in the top 10.

The Times of India is the only English newspaper to make it into list in which there are five Hindi newspapers. These five have a combined readership of 58.3 million. 

Besides the five Hindi, two Malyalam, one English, there is a Marathi and a Tamil newspaper in the list of ten popular Indian dailies.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Reference guide to Roman Hindustanti (Roman Urdu or Roman Hindi)

Here is a short guide to the Roman Hindustani (Roman Urdu or Roman Hindi) as it is used in sign boards, internet forums, mobile texts and for mostly casual written conversation in North India and Pakistan.

There are a few exceptions. They tend to show influences of the script one uses. Compare ahasaas (feeling) vs ehesaas (feeling). Indians (influenced by Devnagari) write it the former way, while Pakistanis (and some Indians like me) prefer the latter.


Single consonants

b – as in boy. Bechna (to sell), Banaras (the name of a city)
c – not used, foreign words are an exception. (cola, not kola)
d – sometimes as "th" in "the", dadi (grandmother), dimag (brain, intelligence)
      at other times as "d" in "command", danda (stick, baton), damru (a musical instrument)
      There is also a third sound which does not have any English equivalent. Mod  (turn), tod (to break)
f – as in fish, faltu (useless), fir (then, again)
g – always hard as in go; gerna (to let fall), gana (song)
h – as in house; harna (to lose), holi (the name of a festival)
j – as in jam; jamun (Jambul), jija (brother-in-law)
k – as in quick (unaspirated); kela (banana), kala (black)
l – as in London; lamba (long, tall), litna (to lie down)
m – as in man; maal (money), mohit (enchant)
n – as in nanny; nana (mother's father), neem (a herb)
      as in French "pardon"; men (in), saans (breath)
      as in kan (grain). No English equivalent.
p – as in blip (unaspirated); Patna (capital of Bihar); papa (papa)
q – not used, except in some words of Arabic or Persian origin ("qaum", "qafila", "quran")
r – as in Russian; roshni (light), rasta (way)
     Sometimes used in place of "d" in words like "Mor" instead of "Mod"
s – as in sip; sona (to sleep; gold); saas (mother-in-law)
t – sometimes as "t" in Italian "alto"; tota (parrot), totla (someone who stammers, stutters)
     in other occasions "t" as in pit (never aspirated); tanki (water tank), tokna (to interrupt)
v – as in van; vasta (sake), vikna (to be sold)
w – Mostly to replace "v."; wasta (sake), wikna (to be sold)
x – rarely used. Pronounced "ksh" as in Lakshmi. Only a few names have it; Laxmi
y – as in yatch; yaari (friendship), yatri (traveller)
z – as in zoo; zameen (earth), zar (gold)


bh – aspirated "b". No English equivalent. Bhárat (India)
ch – unaspirated, as in "church"
dh – aspirated "d."
       There are two sounds neither of which has an English equivalent.  
      Dhám (a place of pilgrimage) 
       and dhol (an musical instrument)
gh – aspirated "g." No English equivalent. Ghee
jh – aspirated "j." No English equivalent. Jhánsi (the name of a city)
kh – aspirated "k" as in car, cap
ph – sometimes used in place of "f"
rh - No English equivalent. Used as "d" of "mod" (turn) at the end of the names of cities and states: Chhattisgarh, Rajgarh, Junagarh
sh – as in slush
th – two sounds.
       One is of "th" in "think"
       the second does not have an English equivalent. Thand (cold)


chh - aspirated "ch". As in "church". Chhattisgarh   


Single vowels

a – mostly as "u" in cut. Kab (when)
      sometimes long as in father. Kitab (book), sipahi (soldier)
      Mostly long when it comes in the end of a word. Gita (Gita), pita (father)

e – as in elephant. Jan-e-man (darling)
     sometimes as in academy. Ke (that)
     sometimes as in may. Akeli (alone; female), jhelna (to bear)

i – as in inch. Kitna (how much)
     Long as in machine at the end of a word. Pani (water)

o – as in hot. Langot (a trouser), mota (fat, obese)

u – mostly short as in put. Lutna (to be robbed), pul (bridge)
      sometimes as in cut. Hum (we)


aa – long "a" as in father. Saari (an Indian dress), maali (gardner)

ai – as in animal. Hai (is), main (me)

au – as in ought. Aur (and), Qaum (society)

ay – In Pakistan, "ay" is found instead of "ai." Hay (is), mayn (me)

ei – as in freigh. Mein (in)

ee – as in feed. Bijlee (electricity)


Kal jab ham vahaan ja rahe the to hame ehesaas hua ke is dunia men sab kuchh theek nahi hai.

We realised not everything in the world was well when were going there yesterday.

Kya maths ka ijaad hua tha, ya fir us ko khoja geya hai?

Has mathematics been invented, or has it  been discovered?

Kaash hamaare politicians bhi hamaari tarah samajhdaar hote. Ha ha ha!

If only our politicians were as wise as we are. Ha ha ha!