Language - Bihari languages

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Bihari languages

Bihari is the western group of Eastern Indo-Aryan languages, mainly spoken in the Indian states of Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh and also in Nepal.

Despite the large number of speakers of these languages, only Maithili has been constitutionally recognised in India, which gained constitutional status via the 92nd amendment to the Constitution of India, of 2003 (gaining assent in 2004). Both Maithili and Bhojpuri have constitutional recognition in Nepal.

In Bihar, Hindi is the language used for educational and official matters. These languages were legally absorbed under the overarching label Hindi in the 1961 Census. Such state and national politics are creating conditions for language endangerments. After independence Hindi was given the sole official status through the Bihar Official Language Act, 1950. Hindi was displaced as the sole official language of Bihar in 1981, when Urdu was accorded the status of the second official language.

The number of speakers of Bihari languages is difficult to indicate because of unreliable sources. In the urban region most educated speakers of the language name Hindi as their language because this is what they use in formal contexts and believe it to be the appropriate response because of unawareness. The educated and the urban population of the region return Hindi as the generic name for their language.



India (ISO: ), also known as the Republic of India (ISO: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh largest country by area and with more than 1.3 billion people, it is the second most populous country as well as the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, and the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west; China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the northeast; and Bangladesh and Myanmar to the east. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives, while its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia.

The Indian subcontinent was home to the urban Indus Valley Civilisation of the 3rd millennium. In the following millennium, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism began to be composed. Social stratification, based on caste, emerged in the first millennium BCE, and Buddhism and Jainism arose. Early political consolidations took place under the Maurya and Gupta empires; later peninsular Middle Kingdoms influenced cultures as far as Southeast Asia. In the medieval era, Judaism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, and Islam arrived, and Sikhism emerged, all adding to the region's diverse culture. Much of the north fell to the Delhi Sultanate; the south was united under the Vijayanagara Empire. The economy expanded in the 17th century in the Mughal Empire. In the mid-18th century, the subcontinent came under British East India Company rule, and in the mid-19th under British Crown rule. A nationalist movement emerged in the late 19th century, which later, under Mahatma Gandhi, was noted for nonviolent resistance and led to India's independence in 1947.


Bihari languages (English)  Lingue bihari (Italiano)  Bihari (Nederlands)  Bihari (Français)  Bihari (Deutsch)  Línguas biaris (Português)  Бихарские языки (Русский)  Lenguas bihari (Español)  Bihari (Polski)  比哈尔语 (中文)  ビハール語 (日本語)  Бігарські мови (Українська)  비하르어 (한국어)  Bihar-kielet (Suomi)  Biharų kalbos (Lietuvių)  Bihari (Dansk)  Bihárské jazyky (Česky)  Bihaari keel (Eesti)  Biharski jezici (Hrvatski)  Bihāri valodas (Latviešu)  Γλώσσα Μπιχάρι (Ελληνικά)