Here are the top 5 most spoken languages in India:
- Hindi – 528 million
- Bengali – 97 million
- Telugu – 95 million
- Marathi – 83 million
- Tamil – 69 million
- Hindi is a language spoken in South Asia, primarily in India and Nepal. It is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world, with over 500 million speakers. Hindi is also one of the official languages of India and is widely used in government, education, media, and other areas of public life. Hindi is written in the Devanagari script, which is a syllabic alphabet that includes 11 vowels and 33 consonants. Hindi has a rich literary tradition that dates back several centuries, with famous poets and writers such as Tulsidas, Kabir, and Premchand contributing to its development. Hindi is an important language in South Asia and beyond, and its popularity continues to grow. With the rise of the Indian economy and the country’s increasing global influence, the importance of Hindi is likely to continue to grow in the coming years.
- Bengali, also known as Bangla, is an Indo-Aryan language spoken in the Indian subcontinent, primarily in Bangladesh and the Indian states of West Bengal, Tripura, and Assam. It is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world, with over 250 million speakers. Bengali has a rich literary tradition that dates back over a thousand years, with famous writers and poets such as Rabindranath Tagore, Kazi Nazrul Islam, and Bankim Chandra Chatterjee contributing to its development. It is the national language of Bangladesh and is also recognized as one of the official languages of India.
- Telugu is a Dravidian language spoken primarily in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh and the Telangana region. It is one of the 22 official languages of India and is spoken by over 80 million people worldwide. Telugu is also spoken in other parts of India, such as Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Maharashtra. Telugu has a rich literary tradition, with a history dating back to the 11th century AD. It is the third-most spoken language in India, after Hindi and Bengali. The script has 56 characters, including 16 vowels and 40 consonants. Famous Telugu writers include Kandukuri Veeresalingam, Gurajada Apparao, and Viswanatha Satyanarayana, while famous Telugu actors include N.T. Rama Rao, Chiranjeevi, and Mahesh Babu.
- Marathi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken in the Indian state of Maharashtra and parts of neighbouring states such as Karnataka, Gujarat, and Goa. It is the official language of Maharashtra and is also recognized as one of the official languages of India. Marathi has a rich literary tradition, with a history dating back over 1,000 years. It is written in the Devanagari script, which is also used to write Hindi and other Indian languages. The script consists of 11 vowels and 42 consonants. Famous Marathi writers include Vishnu Vaman Shirwadkar, V.S. Khandekar, and P.L. Deshpande, while famous Marathi actors include Dada Kondke, Laxmikant Berde, and Nana Patekar.
- Tamil is a Dravidian language spoken primarily in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu, as well as in the Indian union territory of Puducherry and in parts of Sri Lanka, Singapore, and Malaysia. It is one of the oldest and richest classical languages in the world, with a history dating back over 2,000 years. Tamil literature includes the works of famous poets such as Thiruvalluvar, Avvaiyar, and Subramania Bharati. Tamil is written in the Tamil script, which is a syllabic alphabet consisting of 12 vowels, 18 consonants, and one special character.
India also recognizes 22 regional languages as official languages of the country under the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution. These 22 languages are: Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Dogri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili, Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Odia, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Santali, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu and English.
India has a rich linguistic diversity, with many other languages also spoken by significant numbers of people.