Grate! Grate! Grate!! Screech! Screech! Screech! On my ears and in my head that is. Cold blooded! Murder! Killing not so softly! Of the Queen, er..... Her Majesty's language that is.
Open any channel - Hindi or English on Indian Television or switch on any wavelength on the radio, right now. And you will be nodding your head in unison with me.
My mom-in-law, a conservative yet widely travelled lady from the Uttar Pradesh lives with us. And the only conflict I have with her is that of her joyous murder of any language - English or Hindi, with an overriding sense of ignorant bliss. Her eyes twinkle and you can almost visualise her rubbing her hands in innocuous glee as she muddles up the sounds of 'z' and 'j'; 'sh' and 's'; 'va' and 'ba'.......... And watch me take offence as if it were a cold, calculated slight to my person. After all, I was born to a mother who even excelled in a foreign language, viz. Urdu - foreign to her native place of origin and learnt to beautifully intonate the varying sounds including the difficult 'kha'.
Pan to the present and watch and hear our current crop of radio and TV presenters mercilessly mutilate any language they wish to speak in. The phonetics, syntax, delicate details of the usage of English language, grammar, pronunciation.....nothing is cared for. To hell with it all, as long as they look prettily made up (both sexes) and are seen on popular channels with high TRPs to their shows.
As for our mother tongue, I am sick and tired of listening to a really nice language pronounced really badly..... 'Hamesa,' 'Aajaad,' 'Aajaadi,' 'Jabardast,' 'Jaroorat,' 'Sukriya,' 'Sayad,' 'Sam ke char baje,' 'Jindadil,' 'Suruat,' ......you get the drift, right!
My sharp reaction is quite justified as I once again spent an elated three hours watching with utmost pleasure the exchanges between Professor Higgins and his pupil Eliza Doolittle this past weekend.
Get the ear plugs, please someone!!!