There has been always a controversy regarding the naming of our national language.
Undoubtedly, a national language should define the nation at its best.
But being a multi lingual and such a diverse country, it has become very difficult to define one language that can be said to be our national language. For most Indians, Hindi should be the national language of our country, while for others, it should be Bengali, or Tamil, and so on. It is quite true that the Indians, who do not belong to the northern states, find it difficult to understand Hindi. That is why, it is no surprise that India does not have any language that can be termed as the national language.
Keeping in view the diversity of our nation, the framers of the Constitution of India put a provision in the Constitution that Hindi, in Devnagri script shall be an official language of the Central Government. The other official language is English. An official language or ‘rajbhasha’ is the one which the Government uses for official purposes, in courts, Parliament, and for other official communications. Though Hindi has not been granted the status of a national language, the Constitution requires the Government to take steps to promote the spread of Hindi language so that it serves as a medium of expression for all the elements of the composite culture of our country and also to secure its enrichment.
Recently, our Government brought out notifications that made it mandatory for all official communications to be done in Hindi. Apart from this, the notification also made it mandatory for the cabinet ministers to use Hindi while using social networking sites like twitter, facebook, etc. This was an attempt by the Government to promote the use of Hindi and to ensure priority is given to Hindi than English. But it was later on clarified by the Government that the notifications were only for north Indian states, after a huge debate on whether any language could be foisted on the people of this country by the Government.
There’s no doubt that in a country like ours, no language can be imposed on people by the Government. The Government cannot force people or for that matter, Ministers to use Hindi for official communications when almost half of the Indians are not well conversant with the language. But having said that, the importance of a national language cannot be under estimated as it represents the identity of a nation.
It is something that connects the people with their nation and brings them together. It is hoped that with the efforts of the Government, along with cooperation from all states, a day will come when our country too has a national language. It does not have to be Hindi only, but some other language which will be supported by all the states. One such example can be Sanskrit. Nobody should have a problem with it as all Indian languages have been derived from Sanskrit itself!