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Dictionary of Indian English

India is a land of great diversity. Kerala is about as different from Tamil Nadu as France is from Britain. Yet, we move on, in part thanks to the English language. Over several decades, the language has acquired a unique flavour of its own in the country. People like to call it "Indian English"; sometimes proudly and sometimes derisively. Indian English is of course not a different language. Nor, does it require a separate standard or dictionary. Yet, we often find that an Oxford or Webster's dictionary is inadequate or incorrect when dealing with certain words or phrases that have changed their meaning or purpose on the Indian soil. And, there are words that are unique to India, such as "prepone," which are not used anywhere else. This Dictionary of Indian English (DIE) hopes to provide a ready reference for such words and phrases. However, this dictionary does not contain English words that have Indian origins but are now part of standard English.

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aam aadmi adalat agarbatti Agmark ahimsa air-dash almirah alright amma anicut arranged marriage ashram auto ayah


Baapu Baba babu background backside badla bahu bandh bandobust banian bank holiday Basmati bata batchmate behen benami berth beta bhagwan bhai bhajan bhakti bidi bike bits blade board exams bold Bollywood bonnet borewell brinjal British Raj broadminded brokers excuse bund bungalow bunk bureau bypoll


capitation fees capsicum casteism casual leave cent percent Centre chaddar chai challan chalta hai chamcha chappals chargesheet charpoy chats checkpost Chennai cheri Chi Chief Secretary chit chor chota chowk chowkidar chulha churidar cinema clean chit co-brother Collector colony communal party convent cool bar corporator country fellow countrymade cousin-brother creche crore culturals cum curd rice custodial deaths cutting chai


dabba dacoit dahi dakshin dal dandia dargah darshan Dearness Allowance departmental store deposes desi devi dhan dhania dharma dharna dhobiwallah dhoti dias dickey disproportionate assets dissidents divas Diwali doubt dowry death drumstick dry grapes dupatta durbar


elaichi electric trains Emergency encounter English medium eve-teasing eveninger eversilver eyewash


fair family-planning operation fancy store feni fidayeen filter coffee firang fishcart fisherfolk foot overbridge foreign hand foreign-returned forex reserves French beard functionalities fundas


Gandhian gangman ganja ghat ghee gherao gobar gas godman godown good name goonda Government of India Undertaking grease greens gumastha gumboots gunny bags gur gurka guru gutka guyzer gyan gymkhana


hafta hair fall half ticket hall ticket hamara handwash hard Harijans havaldar haveli hawala hawaldar head bath headweight healthy heat and dust high command hijra Hindi belt Hindu rate of growth Hinduism Hindus Hindustan Hindustani Hindutva Hinglish history sheeter Holi hooch horn OK please hotel hukka hundi hungama


Iftar imported Basanti indefinite fast Indian Acronyms and Abbreviations Indian-Made Foreign Liquor indipop inmates innocent divorcee interaction intimate invigilator iron box ISI Mark item number


jaggery japti jati jawan jeevan jehadis ji jibbah johad


kabab kaccha kajal kala mirch kameez kanjoos karma karyakartas khadi Kharif kirana kisan kitty party Kollywood kurta kuruvai


ladies seat ladysfinger lakh langurs lathi lathicharge laxman rekha leela Left parties LIC policy License Raj load shedding log Lok Adalat love marriage


maalish madisaar Madras Tamil Madrasi Maha maida maidan Mallu mama mami management seats mandi mantra mantri Manu masala masti matrimonials matter maulvi mediamen medicos mehndi mela memsahib militants military hotel minority community mirchi miscreants mixie mofussil areas mohajir mohalla moral responsibility morcha mufti muhurtam mundu munsif mushaira music director mutt


naik nariyal national integration native place Navratnas naxalites naya near and dear needful neta no encumberances North Block North-East nose cut NRIs nullah


official machinery offs oil bath open quota opticals other backward classes


Pak pallu pan panchakatcham panchayat paneer paper leak parallel cinema pardes pariah parlour Partition passed out patta peon phenoyl PIL PIN code pindrop silence plastic cover pooja postpaid prepaid cards prepone President's rule prime accused pseudosecular pucca purana purdah pyjama


qawwali qila


Rabi ragging Raj Raja rape ration shops regional aspirations regularise reservation rest house resume revert rickshaw road roko roadside Romeos rosewater roti rowdy rubber ryots


saas saathi sabha sadhu saloon salwar salwar kameez samadhi samba Sangh Parivar sanyas Sardarji sari sarkari Scheduled Castes Scheduled Tribes seat-sharing seva shakehand shakti shamiana shanti sindoor sleeper sloka social justice soft corner South Block South India speak in English speed-breaker Sri standard starrer status family stepney studio supari killer swadeshi swami Syrian Christians


tainted tamasha Tamizh tanda tandoori tantric tehsildar tempo tender coconut thalaivar thali thana third front three-wheelers tiffin tiffin carrier timepass tolet Tollywood too good tortoise coil tribal trishul trouser


Udipi hotel _blankulta undertrial Untouchables updation upgradation upto Urdu utsav


vaastu Vaishya vakil vanaspathi VCD veg veshti vote bank


wallah wet grinder wheatish complexion would-be


yagna yatra



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