UPSC Exam Preparation: This Day in History – Sep 14

14 September 1949

Hindi adopted as the Official language of India


What happened?

On the 14th of September 1949, Hindi was adopted as the official language of the Union of India. This day is celebrated as ‘Hindi Diwas’ in India.

Background

  • Hindi was adopted as the official language of the Union of India on the 14th of September 1949.
  • Subsequently, in 1950, Hindi in the Devanagari script was declared as the official language of India.
  • The states of India identify their own official languages through the process of legislation. However, English is also considered as the official language of India.
  • About 45% of the Indian population speaks in Hindi. In 1950, it was decided that the use of English was to be ended by 26th January 1965, 15 years from the date of adoption of the Constitution of India.
  • Due to strong opposition to the decision of adopting Hindi as the national language, the constitutional makers accepted all the major languages spoken in India as the “Languages of India”.
  • Besides, there was a huge resistance from the South Indian states to accept only Hindi as the official language of India. Keeping this concern in mind, the Indian parliament passed the Official Languages Act in 1963.
  • The act allowed the usage of English along with Hindi, even after 1965.
  • Certain states in the North-eastern part of India, like Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland still make use of English as their official language.
  • Part 17 of the Indian Constitution has in it, elaborate provisions with respect to the official languages of the Republic of India.
  • Article 343 and 344 of the Constitution embody the major provisions dealing with the official languages of the Union of India.
  • 8th schedule has a list of 22 officially recognized Indian languages. Of these 22 Indian languages, 14 were initially added by the Constitution makers.
  • Subsequently, in 1967 Sindhi was added by the 21st Amendment Act; Konkani, Manipuri, Nepali were in 1992 by the 71st Amendment Act. Bodo, Dogri, Maithili, Santhali in 2003 by 92nd Amendment Act.
Also on this day 
  • 1803: Lord Lake captured Delhi in the Battle of Delhi between the British troops lead by General Lake and the Maratha’s of Scindia.
  • strike. He had been arrested in the Lahore Conspiracy Case.
  • 1868: Celebrated teacher of Swamy Dayananda Saraswati (founder of Arya Samaj), Sawmi Virjanand passed away.
  • 1960: OPEC was founded. The core members being Venezuela, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iraq and Iran.

See previous ‘This Day in History’ here.

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