Sunday, January 28, 2007

Changing Kerala

I am in Mallappally, 30 km south of Kottayam Kerala, for a family wedding. This morning we had been to a nearby village called Karukachal. As we were buying vegetables, two persons, in a car, came to an adjacent shop to buy chicken. They were speaking Hindi and new not a word of Malayalam, only a smattering of English. I was surprised to find that the lady at the shop did understand a bit of Hindi. My father-in-law explained that the scene was changing in Kerala. Many people, especially shopkeepers, can understand not just English but Hindi too. One reason is the commercial interest stemming out of increased tourists coming from the north. And, the other, the exposure to Hindi serials on TV.


  1. kerala is definitely changing...the other reason i cud think of for such a change is dat most families in kerela have atleast one person working in some other city or in the gulf! this way a whole generation seems to have learnt diff languages... people there are also mostly educated and have adequate exposure thru d media..

  2. I could not help but think of another possibility - but then this is not malappuram where you can come across a lot of urdu/hindi speakers - persons who are of dubious origin.

    but on the other hand, if you look around in the middle east or outside india, the usual language two indians speak to each other at first contact is hindi, then after knowing origins etc, it slips to a regional language!!

  3. hello Sir ,
    first and foremost happy to see a kazakian in here iam Athul K S roll no 3167 ( 2001 pass out ).

    well i learned most of my hindi at a very young age watching Doordarshan programs on TV , then we had malayalam programs for a short time in the eavening and by 8 it was back to National ,and i liked some of it .. some of them i can think of now r " Circus , Fauji ( Sharook Khan was a funny soldier in it )Then one Japanese program called OSHIM ( i just loved that ) these r the oldest i can think of ,,,, then there was Surabhi ( one good program , it went on air for a looong time ), Reporter staring Shekar suman .

    Doordarshan helped me that way when i was a kid ..

  4. Thanks for the comments, while I was busy travelling and calling on friends and relatives.

    Athul, do you have a blog?

  5. hi
    well i had started a blog once and dint care to fill in much .
    and to make thinks worse , i forgot what its name and id was ..

  6. It's comforting to know that most ppl in the East know or understand some English..

    I get to go to Hyderabad this winter...and my hindi lessons aren't going that well. lol :)