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The ridiculous chant for "Romanagari!"

Can anyone tell me about a single portal which is using Romanized Hindi for its script?

Author Sushobhit Saktawat
The preachers for "Romanized Hindi" (or "Romanagari", as they call it, as an hybrid of "Roman" and "Devnagari") are at it again and this time they are using a shoulder popular enough to shot a fire.
 
Rahul Gandhi, of all people, was seen on Wednesday carrying crib sheets for his speech in Parliament. The speech was written in Romanized Hindi. One photographer picked it and the image went viral.

This was, however, not for the first time when was seen preferring "Romanized Hindi". In no time it triggered an enraging debate (more "troll" than "debate", in fact) on social media. Tweets started pouring in. Someone said "Both Momma-beta Sonia & Rahul Gandhi read Hindi cheat sheet in Roman. No Congi better than these jokers?" Some other wondered : "Rahul Baba does not know Hindi script? No one writes his own notes in capital letters. Someone wrote the script? Who?" But this issue is not reduced to political troll, it has deeper implications.

It is a matter of language, after all. Of idnentity and sanctity. Of culture and communication.
 
What is more dangerous is the so called "More than Devanagri" reading of this farcical situation, where the scion of a political party is seen preferring to use Romanized Hindi. The English Media, always keen to undermine Hindi language and script, declared it the greatest proof that nowadays is being used more often than the Hindi. The claim is plain ridiculous on its face.
 
We all know that English is written in Roman script and Hindi is written in Devnagari script. When the digital technology evolved, English was its default language and Roman was its standard script. This gave rise to this phenomenon called Romanized Hindi, where people who couldn't write English but were using gadgets to communicate, started to write in Romanized Hindi, first in mobile SMS's, and then in mails and chats and even for proper writings too. By all means a very shoddy, clumsy, crude, irritating and inappropriate way to communicate. As bad as, say, writing English in Devnagari script or writing Sanskrit in Arabic script! The whole idea is pointless!
 
Today, English is no longer the first language of digital technology. Countless vernacular language portals are running across the world. There are hundreds of Hindi language portals too, some of them extensively and widely read and visited. Can anyone tell me about a single portal which is using Romanized Hindi for its script? Precisely where is that place on digital map where "More Roman is used than Devanagri", if we are not talking about random internet chats, that is. And if we are not talking about the Bollywood industry which reads its dialogues in a text written in Romanized Hindi. These are hardly mainstream modes of mass communication.
 
This is not new, however. Some time ago, noted novelist Chetan Bhagat also had suggested that Devnagari should be replaced with Roman. Everybody had gone over the top criticizing him, and rightly so, but I kept waiting and nobody came forward and said that, leave alone the grammatical discipline of a language system, a linguistic script also has an "image-repertoire" of its own. It is also a pictorial phenomenon. You just can not write English in Devnagari and Hindi in Roman. That is a ridiculous suggestion. 
 
Ludwig Wittgenstein's use of the term "visual room" is particularly intriguing in this regard. We must not forget that he already had prescribed a "Picture theory of language" in "Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus", where he compared the concept of logical pictures with spatial pictures. And then he goes on to talk about "visual rooms" in liguistic perspectives. Jane Mustard and Peter Wood had written a very interesting research paper on it titled "There is no ‘I’ in ‘Image’: Wittgenstein’s Image Forming, the Visual Room and the Boundaries of Language and Space". Anyone interested in linguistics should read it and those who think "Romanized Hindi" is ok, should try to read it in "Devnagari", just to get an idea of their absurd suggestion!
 
[ Picture courtesy : The Telegraph ]
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