My take on Justice Katju’s take on Learning Hindi

A good friend of mine, posted a link to this article on Facebook, and being vetti, I went ahead and read it. Now being the kind of person who has a very strong point of view on most things in life, I certainly do not agree with Justice Katju. While I could be juvenile, and dismiss him off as an idiot, like many others do in the comments section, I think the more appropriate thing to do is, think openly about a few things.

  • “I advised Tamilians to learn Hindi”

Absolutely nothing wrong with it. But everyone should decide on their own on what they want to do with that advice. After all, if everyone listened to every other stupid person’s advice, Sachin Tendulkar would have retired ages back. 😉

But saying that, I leave it to you – you decide, and then constantly nagging, trying to justify what you said over and over again, it not letting you decide freely – well, that is compellingly compelling.

Person 1: Do you want to ice-cream or a cookie ?
Person 2: I’ll take the cookie
Person 1: But the ice-cream is really good.
Person 2: No thanks, I’ll still take the cookie.
Person 1: Are you sure ? the ice-cream is nice and cold.
Person 2: Can I please have the cookie ?
Person 1: Well, it’s your choice. All I am saying it, the ice-cream is a better choice over the cookie.
Person 2: $%$# you. Do me a favor and stick both up your rear en*!!

Do you see how annoying that is ?

  • “the number of Hindi speakers would be about 15 times that of Tamil speakers.”

My dear Justice Katju, let me point out to you that the majority of the world’s population speaks Mandarin Chinese. Why don’t you learn it ? Maybe you already know it. So why don’t you advice people to learn it ?

Let me make my point more clear – it is not to heckle poor Mr. Katju. Have you heard the proverb “While in Rome, be a Roman” ? Yes, it makes sense to learn a language if you are going to be visiting a place where the language is used predominantly or solely. Let’s say you were going to go on a short/decently long trip to Spain – don’t you take trouble to learn at least a few common phrases of the language ? But do you sit home and learn Spanish, so that if Spaniard tourists were to visit your city, you can give them directions ?

Same with Hindi.If you expect to be posted/travel to a place where the majority of the population speaks Hindi, then by all means buy the “Rapidex guide to learning Hindi in 10 minutes” book :)- more seriously, learn the common phrases, learn what will get you by your day to day life at the very least. But, should you learn it on the off-chance that might happen ? Maybe not, for the same reason that you will not learn Chinese on the off-chance that you will travel to China.

See my gripe stems from the fact that, Mr Katju doesn’t advise Hindi speaking populace to learn Tamil when they visit Tamil Nadu. While in Tamil Nadu, speak Tamil. The problem stems from the fact that “Northies” coming into Tamil Nadu, expect to be spoken to in Hindi, served hot Parathas at Kaiyendhi Bhavan, and want the crappiest of Hindi movies to be released ahead of Tamil movies. They will also walk up to a shop and inquire in Hindi ‘you don’t know Hindi’ ? The Germans and French don’t respond to people who talk to them in English even if they know English. Did you know that ? You would be very unwelcome if you constantly tried to force them to converse with you in English.

Mr. Katju, being the literary expert he is, also also disregards Urdu,

  • Pakistanis (who number about 200 million) also speak Hindi, though they call it Urdu” he claims blatantly. Any dimwit with half a school education should know that Urdu is not Hindi.
  • “Anyone coming from Tamil Nadu to other parts of India will realise this. Without knowing Hindi he will experience great difficulty”

This, I agree with.

Back to the point of, When in Rome – be a Roman.

  • I fully support the demand that lawyers in the Madras High Court should be allowed to argue in Tamil (except before judges who have come on a transfer from other States

Why should judges who come from other states not learn Tamil, in the same way anyone from Tamil Nadu going to other parts of India should learn other languages ? This is very simply and definitely double standards.

Mr. Katju, your suggestion is absurd and inconsistent. I have considered your suggestion. It doesn’t make sense. I reject it. Thank you. Maybe you should sit down and “think rationally about this, and it would make sense”.

For those who feel strongly against the Justice Katju’s article, Although not entirely on the same matter, 🙂 I suggest reading this slightly old other post.

Edit : 16-Dec-2012

It would be unfair to leave out a few details here. I generally do not talk about myself on my posts or my blog. (At least not the relevant details.) However, some things need a special mention. As a student I studied Hindi in school, till I ditched it in favour of French for my last two years in School. I did Tamil as a third language, and learnt to read and write. I can already talk Tamil well enough. Now, why did I learn Hindi ? Well, it’s hard to say that as a kid that I had a choice in the matter,but I can say with confidence that if I were asked today, I’d pick the same. Why ? Why not ? Do my actions need to be justifiable ? No, not as long as they don’t affect others. But I’ll say this – I’ll do whatever the frig pleases me. And I will not have someone tell me I cannot learn Hindi if I want to – just as I will not have someone tell someone else that they should learn Hindi even if they don’t want to, and shove it down their throat.

Do I fell I can communicate and bond with people better because I know Hindi ? No. I in fact converse in English when the other person talks to me in Hindi or Tamil (unless they are already close enough, at which point, it makes no sense any more.) I don’t let anyone “arey yaar” me into giving them my homework just as much as I don’t let anyone “enna machi” me into doing the same. There are no favours. Well, but that’s just at the student to student – colleague to colleague level. In those circles, if you can’t talk to me in English, get the hell out, and do me a favour by not talking to me. Would I treat a ‘rickshaw wallah’ or an ‘auto kaaran’ the same way ? Of course not. I would try my best to get my message across in a tongue they understand.

Enough about me already. The other important thing is, this post is not about whether or not you should learn a language. This post is about one man, trying to force his ill-formed opinion upon others in the name of advice. So, I did my research on Justice Katju – I thought he didn’t know Urdu. So I listened to an interview on ‘Walk the Talk’. He quoted Urdu poetry effusively, and I thought to myself, my God, did I make a mistake in thinking this guy was cuckoo ? But then it dawned on me that if he knew Urdu and made a statement that went “They speak Hindi too – they just call it Urdu”, he was not an ignoramus. He was being a Machiavellian. He was purposefully misleading or misguiding people. Also, if you take the trouble of watching the video,

you will find it rife with self-contradictions, and inconsistencies in his stand. The guys is not even sure of what he represents.

You should also read the following article, which does a much better job of putting Katju in place –

Tagged – Long Overdue

Srihari tagged me. So here goes.

1. If your lover betrayed you, what will your reaction be?

IF I had one. (Do you guys really wan’t me to quote Sidhu on If’s and butt’s ? I heard he even brings in Zidane in his new version. Except no TV channel is prepared to air it. Haaa ha ha ha ha)

The other equally good answers:

ii) My lover would never betray me. (To which people might scoff and say, “yeah rite”. Not even “yeah right”)

iii) I don’t know about my immediate reaction, but when I do sit and do some thinking, I’ll just let it be and never talk to her again. If she ever called back, I would have to give her the “This ship has sailed” speech.

2. If you can have a dream to come true, what would it be?

Well, I cannot be extremely candid and ruin that dream. (Especially since it involves a girl. Ahem.)But here’s what comes in second. (And very close at that.)

To win the Nobel and loads of cash and other awards, by finding means to solve the energy crisis. (Wait till you are 10 more years older and then you will know the significance of this. 🙂 )

3. Whose butt would you like to kick?

Tricky one. Lovingly ? Or to vent anger ? 😉 Assuming it is to vent anger, loads of people really for various reasons, Including the guy who tagged me. (For what, you shall never know. Muahahaha.)

Add to that Indian politicians. Now, who wouldn’t ?

4. What would you do with a billion dollars?

Make it ten billion and then get the guy who asks “What will you do with ten ?” to shut up by stuffing enough one dollar bills in his mouth. But, yeah if at all I made that much, I would start my own company and fund my own disastrous research(es).

5. Will you fall in love with your best friend?

Hey, I am not Gay OK ?

Well, assuming its a girl, maybe, maybe not. It depends really.(I know an answer can’t be more abstract, but I don’t want to go in boring detail. For further clarifications, you could mail me. 🙂 )

6. Who do you think should make the first move? (Original Q: Which is more blessed, loving someone or being loved by someone?)

I know everyone says The guy. But why ? In this day and age where woman claim equality in everything, why not this too ? (Why I am saying this is there have been times (maybe a couple of times tops) when I have simply not been able to ask people out. It would have really helped if I didn’t have to be the initiator. 😀 )

But that said, I’d like a old fashioned girls better. (Again Sidhu talks on if’s and butt’s) I know, I know, that will only be a dream.

Also there is this notion that if a girl asks a guy out, she’s a slut. See there is a difference. You ask one guy out, (and you really like him, yada yada yada) you are ok. You ask a million guys out, what can I say ?

7. How long do you intend to wait for someone you really love?

So baby I will wait for you…… if it takes the rest of my life. If it’s the last thing I do. (Yea, it’s not original. What do you expect ? )

8. If the person you secretly like is already attached, what would you do?

Attached ? As in ? If it means she is already with someone, I will let go and not ruin things. If it means likes me too, how the eff on earth do you expect me to know ? It’s not as if they bat their eye lids in morse code telling you “I Like/Love you.” Ok, that would be scary unless its a Chinese. Chinese can do that, believe me. But then we can’t understand Chinese now, can we ?

9. If you like to act with someone, who will it be? Your gf/bf or an actress/actor?

All the world is a …. How does it go ? Act as in act in movies ? No thanks. I’ll pass. If it means favourite actress, then loads in hollywood and our own dhak dhak queen Madhuri Dixit.

10. What takes you down the fastest?

If only I could fathom the meaning of most of these questions.

It’s a complex equation involving altitude from the ground, mode of descent and various other factors like, is a good looking girl going up the stairs ?

But yeah, mock drills with shrill fire alarms work too.

11. How would you see yourself in ten years time?

Very clever. If I say mirror, you will say eye. Let’s play it safe and say as a 32 year old shall we ?

12. What’s your fear?

I am afraid of a lot many things really. But yeah horror movies crack me up.

13. What kind of person do you think the person who tagged you is?

Srihari’s post clarifies that. 🙂 If I get into more detail than that, Ill be in a lot of trouble.

14. Would you rather be single and rich or married but poor?

Believe it or not, I would rather be Single and Poor. Be single and rich and the girls will be after you and you will never find true love. (Ok ok, relax. I know it is cliched.) Be married and poor, and what can I say, but poor you. 😀

15. What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?

Earlier, walk like a zombie to the PC -> switch on the monitor -> check mails.

Now, Look at the clock -> shout out a few swear words -> bang hard on the bathroom door to get my room mate out -> run to catch the office bus.

16. Would you give all in a relationship?

Ok, here’s something really personal. (For a change I am not kidding.) Even if in a relationship , I would still want to pursue my interests and not make sacrifices. Why do you think I am so bad at this ?

P.S: Girls reading this post are supposed to read “Totally”

17. If you fall in love with two people simultaneously, who would you pick?

Now, the chance of me falling in love with two people simultaneously is pretty thin, but in that event, I’d have to say, neither. (Yeah, I am sad.)

(Slightly off note, its amazing how fat chance and slim chances can mean the same thing. 🙂 )

18. Would you forgive and forget no matter how horrible a thing that special someone has done?

Forgive no, forget yes. (The person) Hey, I am normally pretty tolerant. But I don’t like people pissing me off.

19. If its your last day and you have one call to make, whom would you call? Dont tell me your mom. Someone else. (Original qn:What are your three most important expectations in love )

Last day of what ? On earth ? Hey don’t worry, if its my last day on earth it sure as hell will be yours too. Believe me.

As for three important expectations in love, hmmm. Lets just say it’s best not to have any expectations.

20. List 6 people to tag:

Vibushan (I hope he hasn’t been tagged)

Post from Chennai

It’s been a long (with number of l’s and n number of o’s) time since I posted anything on my blog. The last two odd months have been a mix of so many things. (More on that later) I have neither had the time to check comments on the blog nor read posts on others blogs. 😦

I finally decided to come back home for the weekend. (That means monday is going to be nightmarish 😛 ) But with only about another month left for the training to get over, this was the best time to come home.

OK, I don’t even know what I am writing. This is what happens when you go from writing 2 posts a day to writing a post in two months. Some posts will follow and hopefully be more coherent.

One Lakh Hits

Err, hard to believe and totally insignificant too, but now I can boast of being a Lakhpathi. 🙂 1,00,000 hits and counting. (Ok, by now, the ‘and counting’ looks silly. You don’t sit and count numbers after that.) So, I decided I’d install StatCounter, just to see how the hits and the visits differ in the future. It’s up and running.

I thought of a few minor modifications to the blog, but I don’t think that would be all that necessary. I don’t know if I can blog all that actively in another 15 days or so anyway. Anyway, regardless, keep reading and keep the score board ticking.

I would not like to thank anyone for being a big support and all that. Jobless people, go do something useful for a change. 😛

English Massacred by Indian Government


Well, the other day I remember discussing with Marc somewhere as to how the experience of obtaining a Driving Licence can be a whole lot worse than obtaining a Passport. Right now I am so confused and dizzy (thanks to the application), that I ask of the readers to “bare” with me if there are any errors at all in the post.

Here is (ample ample) proof. English language murdered and massacred and on an Official Government of India form. Talk about revenge. 🙂

  • Signature of Thumb Impression

Signature of Thumb Impression

Ever thought about that ? You thumb impression can have a signature now. Completely digital too. Haven’t you heard of digital signatures ?

  • Yes I Enclose. And… ?

Yes I Enclose. And...?

#17 on the form says “I enclose three copies of my recent photograph (passport size photograph)” followed by a line where you are supposed to write something. What ? Yes, I do. ? Or do they expect us to write stuff like “This photograph was taken when I was in my 2nd year B.E. I used to play sports back then. That should explain the tan.”

  • Mot less than

Mot Less Than

Em En O Pee. How does it matter ? It’s all the same anyway. Ever seen how MIT spells Massachusetts anyway ? With a V. And here we are criticizing our poor Govt. officials.

  • Vehical fitred

Vehical Fitred

Vehical is like logical. We don’t say Logicel now do we ? And it’s supposed to be fitted with some red thing of some sort. A Half lime smeared in blood perhaps ?

  • Steering Whell

Steering Whell

Whell, what can I say ?

  • Au ourside, reaeily, ordinery, disbility

Au ourside, reaeliy, ordinery

Au ourside ? Wow, we have the Gold on our side now. How boring an outside would be ? Who wants an outside when you have gold on your side ?

But then how can you be suffering from muscular power ? Isn’t that like awesome ? Having muscular power ? It’s like saying Superman suffers from superpowers. Indeed he does.

Once you are involved with a distillery, its quite ordinary to spell ordinary as ordinery. Big deal.

Disbility is like Invisibility. Another superpower.

  • Here declare, there in are true

(shall upload soon)

  • Beleif

(shall upload soon)

  • Amplity


Amplity. Ok, I am clueless on this one. (Except it probably should have been amplify.)

  • Maybe required to given further

Maybe required to given further

Yeah. That’s right. Maybe required to given further details. Not give. Given.

  • Spectacle, less of member

Spectacle,Less of member

That these guys can even read and write English is a spectacle.

Less of a member ? This guy sure lost his member. Dismembered.

  • Ordinery


Just an ordinery spelling mistake. Nothing to it really.

  • Adriver


Adriver ? Is it like screwdriver or something ?

  • An details

An detials

Now this could be in detail or and details. It’s your guess.

  • Affax


Affax!! Meaning you can also do it over fax. Normally it has to be affixed in person.

  • A manner of his signature….???

A manner of his signature

I leave this for people to comment.

P.S: Some of the images didn’t come out so well. But you can’t really complain. I used a camera, not a scanner. Now,there were (or surely must have been) more of this funny stuff on the form, but then it was quite tiring to get even these many.I hope it was enough to keep you entertained and keep the British away and any idea they might have of invading India again. Hurray to Indian Culture. 😀

My First Two Times

First Time:

While I may be a little late on the scene what with me being 21 and all, there’s always a first time. However, the first time is scary isn’t it ? You have never done it before. You are always scared you are going to screw up, that you will cause irreparable damage. So, then it’s not surprising that I was a little apprehensive. I had to get into gear slowly and make sure I picked up pace only gradually. After a while, I decided it was enough for one night. I had learned some valuable lessons that just cannot be taught. They have to be learnt and mastered. But I was jumping with joy like a kid by the end of it.

Second Time:

After having done it once, I was increasingly confident and was looking forward to proving that I was getting better at it. This time over, I had little trouble. All the mistakes I had made during my first time, I seemed to have learnt from. The entire ride was smoother. I picked up pace, made a few surprise moves. I even tried reverse. By, now I was enjoying it. I am still scared of doing it in crowded places though. That takes some practice.

What am I talking about ? Well, I did get more obvious towards the end, didn’t I. Car driving man!! Read the post again. 🙂 It so happens that coincidentally, I went driving at night. I need to get a driving license soon. I am still not very confident of driving on congested roads. I just hope I get my LLR soon so that I can go driving on crowded roads.