Most of the Indian languages have been derived from 2 major linguistic families which are known as:
The Indo-European family has further sub-divisions and Indo-Aryan which is an offshoot of this family is the source of a large number of languages spoken by around 70 percent population of the country. The Indian languages belonging to Dravidian family are spoken by about 22 percent population of the country.
India which is a country of diverse cultures and traditions has 22 recognized languages which are spoken in different parts of the country. Hindi is spoken by a large number of populations belonging to the central and north Indian states like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttaranchal, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Delhi.
According to Article 343 of the Indian Constitution, Hindi written in Devanagri script remains the official language of the Central Government. Article 345 of the Constitution also allows the states and the union territories to recognize a language as official language if it is adopted by the state legislature.
At present there are 18 official languages in India. Till 1967, there were 14 official languages in India but through the Eighth Schedule and the Seventy-First Amendment of the constitution 4 more languages, Sindhi, Konkani, Manipuri and Nepali, were included in the list of the official languages improving the tally to 18.
The recognized official languages of the Indian states are mentioned below:
Bengali figures among major languages derived from the Indo-Aryan family. It is the official language of West Bengal. The language is spoken by around 200 million people belonging to West Bengal and bangle Desh.
Gujarati is the official language of Gujarat and it ranks among one of the richest languages of Indian states. About 70 percent of the total population of Gujarat speaks the language.
Hindi is the official language of India and spoken in 6 states the capital city Delhi. From the numerical point of view, Hindi is believed to be the biggest and one of the languages belonging to the Indo-Aryan family.
Kashmiri language is mostly spoken in Jammu and Kashmir. It is included in the list of such languages which share the parentage of Indo-Aryan family. The Kashmiri language has rich literature and it has produced many literary figures.
Kannada is the official language of Karnataka. About 65 percent of the total population of the state speaks the language. It is one of the oldest Indian languages derived from Dravidian family.
Konkani is the state language of Goa. It has its roots in the south-western branch of the Indo-Aryan family. Apart from Goa, a large number of Konkani people living in Maharashtra, Kerala and Karnataka also speak the language.
Malayalam is believed to be the youngest of all the languages belonging to Dravidian family. It is the official language of Kerala and has very rich literature.
Marathi is recognized as one of the oldest Indian languages. Initially it figured among the Indo-Aryan family of languages but at a very early period, it separated itself from the stock.
It is the official language of Orissa and has its roots in the Indo-Aryan family of languages. Though the language took complete shape in the 10th century, its literary journey began quite later, in the 14th century.
Punjabi is the state language of Punjab. It is one of the ancient languages of India and shares common parentage with Indo-Aryan family of languages. The Punjabi literature is written in Gurmukhi script.
It also figures among the list of Indo-Aryan family of languages. The language conserves some of the archaic features of the Indo-Aryan family.
Tamil is one of the oldest languages belonging to Dravidian family. It is the official language of Tamil Nadu. The language is spoken by around 73 million people.
Telugu is the official language of Andhara Pradesh and belongs to Dravidian family of languages. The language took its shape in the 7th century but began its literary career only in the 11th century.
Urdu is the youngest of all the languages spoken in India. Termed as one of the sweetest languages of the world, it is spoken by 28 million people in India. Urdu is recognized as the official language of Jammu and Kashmir.