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Euphemisms in Hinglish - the language of modern India - Dinara Vasbiyeva

Hinglish is a blend of the two official languages of India, Hindi and English. It is often spoken by many educated Indians, today's student youth, Indian professionals working in information technology or outsourcing, and people in commerce.

Hinglish is the language of a hybrid culture of ethnic Indians born or living outside India. It became popular after the advent of satellite television in India. Dinara Vasbiyeva, PhD in Economics, Associate Professor of the Department of English and Professional Communication at the Financial University under the Government of the Russian Federation, told TV BRICS about it.

Bollywood, the Indian film industry, also plays a major role in the development of Hinglish. The dominance of Hinglish can be observed in Indian media, cinema, television, especially entertainment and music channels, advertisements. Phrases like "Yeh Dil Maange More" and "We are like this only" heralded the emergence of Hinglish in the advertising industry. Unsurprisingly, according to some representatives of major advertising agencies, most Indians will be able to understand you if you speak to them in more accessible Hinglish, as they have a superficial knowledge of English.

In most cases, the compound English word and Hindi word are euphemisms (a word or phrase used to disguise crude, offensive and plain language). These figures of speech avoid taboos at the expense of politeness.


Musicals are a euphemism for Bollywood films. The "bold scenes" phrase replaces the description of racy scenes in films. "Rash driving (reckless driving)" is a euphemism to replace "reckless motorists". "Take a Chill pill" instead of relaxing and, perhaps most famously, "Don" instead of crime boss. "Desi" means compatriot, "Gandhigiri" (one following Mahatma Gandhi's principles) is used instead of Gandhism - these are some of the terms coined by Bollywood.

The English press in India often refers to the use of such vocabulary as the "Gutka accent" (refreshingly Indian). Here are some more Hindi terms that are commonly used in Indian English:

Achchaa - good

Angrez/firang is an Englishman

Array - hello

Bandh - general strike

Bus - enough

Junglee - wild

Masala - savoury, spicy

Neta - leader

Pakka - necessary

Yaar - buddy

Curry - a spicy dish that means Indian food to foreigners

According to David Kristal, a professor at the University of Wales, Hinglish, spoken by 300 million Indians worldwide, will become more popular than English as "certain phrases are bound to go global because so many Indians work in the IT sector.

As more Indians chat and send emails, the phrases and words they use to describe their lives will be picked up by others online.

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