Is Hazaragi a Dialect or a Language?

Hazaragi language

Much has been said on this issue and yet more coming. Some Hazaras accept Hazaragi being a language while some on other hand simply term it a dialect instead of a language. However, in the meantime, there is a huge silent majority, who seems to be undecided whether to accept Hazaragi as a language or a dialect.  

Those who oppose Hazaragi being a language unfortunately come up with the emotional comments rather than academic, practical or rational ones. While those who favour Hazaragi being a language adopt cautious approach by inviting the opponents to look into the academic and historical backgrounds of Hazara community instead of straight forward blatant comments.

Teaching English language for the last 12 years including six years in UK colleges has now pushed me into the matter to convey some serious messages than absurd notes.

Before commenting on Hazaragi language, let’s look into English language we speak today. Do we really know whether it existed 1000-year before as a formal language? It was around 15th century when some intellectuals including William Shakespeare started bringing English into a proper shape through his literary works. He is said to have individually injected 2000 new words into English language.  I’m sure you’ll agree with me that today’s English is very different from the English of 15th century.   

Now the point which I’m making here is that the proper English language, which didn’t exist 1000 years before now it is ruling all around the world. What made it acceptable to the international community to learn, speak, read or write? Of course, it was the hard work of the English people who worked day and night to promote their language to the world community.

When we talk about Hazaragi language, unfortunately it is standing where English language used to be around 1000 years ago and English language is believed to be the West Germanic language that originated from the Anglo-Frisian dialects, brought to Britain by Germanic invaders and/or settlers from the places which are now called North West Germany and the Netherlands. It uses a vocabulary disparate to other European languages of the same era. A large portion of the modern English vocabulary came from the Anglo-Norman languages. English is considered as a “borrowing” language.  Old English initially was a diverse group of dialects, reflecting the varied origins of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of Britain. The Late West Saxon dialect eventually became dominant.

The purpose of describing the brief history of English language is only to let all those hardcore pseudo brains know that no language is produced in the scientific laboratory because it is always a diverse group of dialects in the beginning, which get tuned into a beautiful language by the passage of time with the support of the local speakers who later on sketch the picture of the sound of the language on the paper to create writing. Once it gets on the paper then it turns into words and then words into sentences, which gradually takes the spoken language to the next level of a beautiful formal writing.  

English is now considered a complete language because it has got all the ingredients for the people to feel easy to communicate to resolve their daily issues.

Urdu language is another example, which has got also the same story. It didn’t formally exist 500 years ago but now it is spoken, read and written in Pakistan. The same language is spoken in India in Sanskrit script and words—called Hindi.

Now the questions arise whether Hazaragi is spoken somewhere on earth? Yes, it is. Do people understand it properly? Yes, they do. Does it express the emotional, religious, financial, cultural feelings of the people? Yes, it does. Do people feel easy to communicate Hazaragi to resolve their daily routine issues? Yes, they do. Does it have the quality to turn it into writing? Yes, it does. Does it have any writing scripts? Yes, it does, then why on earth it can’t be a language?

3D animated Hazaragi Cartoon Buz-e_Chini

3D animated Hazaragi Cartoon Buz-e_Chini

Hazaragi Radio program has been running successfully for the last 30 years in Quetta City, Pakistan which is a matter of great pride for the Hazara community. Hazaras of Afghanistan and Pakistan know about it very well.  All the scripts of the radio programs are written in Hazaragi language. Either we accept it or not it is true that talented Hazaras of Quetta have produced and still producing Hazaragi songs, Hazaragi dramas, Hazaragi poetry, Hazaragi magazines and even the first ever Hazaragi world class 3D animated cartoon “Buz-e-Chini” and 2D animated cartoon “Aahu Goni Naado”. Moreover, Muhammad Ali Ikhtiyar, Reza Wasiq, Liaquat Ali Aajiz, Qadir Nael, Yaseen Zameer, Aziz Fayyaz, Muhammad Ali Toorani etc  are writing poetry in Hazaragi language and even some of them have already published their poetry books in Hazaragi language. Who can deny the valuable literary works of Shaheed Hussain Ali Yousafi who wrote several Hazaragi dramas and Hazaragi proverb book for Hazaras? For those who don’t know that two Hazaragi Academies are currently running in Quetta, where they produce magazines in Hazaragi language. In addition, Hazaragi Nohas and Marsiyas are also now being introduced for the first time in Quetta. 

Me playing a very small role in Hazaragi Drama Khaliq Shaheed in early 90s.

Me playing a very small role in Hazaragi Drama Khaliq Shaheed in early 90s.

To cut in short, all forms of Hazaragi language writings are available to those who unnecessarily criticize Hazaragi language. It is true that Hazaragi writing is something new for some Hazaras therefore, it takes time to digest properly. However, in the meantime, if someone doesn’t accept or intentionally try not to understand, then he/she must have some kinds of psychological problems with Hazaragi language, if it is not then of course, it must be some kinds of psychological problems with the Hazaras of Quetta who are trying their best to work and promote Hazaragi language. As you know, that there are also some naive Hazaras who are angry on those who are getting Hazaragi language recognized in Australia.

yousufiHaving read loads of rubbish comments against Hazaragi language by some self-appointed Hazara literates, one easily comes to know of their psychological complexities with Hazaragi language. My sincere advice to them is, please stop spiting their venom on Hazaragi language as it is thriving fast in Quetta City. Those who don’t know how to write Hazaragi language they must contact to all those who are writing Hazaragi poetry, Hazaragi drama, Hazaragi stories and Hazaragi cartoons in Quetta City.

Some Hazaras instead of supporting those who are working on Hazaragi language, are unfortunately trying their best to declare them “fools” and regrettably these elements are also wasting their energy in declaring Hazaragi as a dialect, which is matter of great shame and concern.

Let it be very clear that if we don’t work on our language, it will always remain a second class language. We all need to come out of our regional and personal meanness and join hands to support all those who are bringing Hazaragi language into practical life.

6 thoughts on “Is Hazaragi a Dialect or a Language?

  1. Apperciative Mr. Younas! We have to promote, support and protect our Hazaragi laguage.

  2. Ye, I do support Hazaragi, hoever as you said, it needs lots lots of hard working and establishing its grammar and literary work and tune it up.
    The more we pay attention on it academically the better it will become

    S.Noyan

  3. Hazaragi is a Farsi dialect. Why? Because practically every single word used is Farsi. Just because we pronounce a word or have our own unique phrases does not make it a separate language unto itself.

  4. I Sayeed Arif Hasheemi had been the President of UNITED HAZARA ASSOCIATION INC,for 3 years.The U H A is the very first organisation through which the Hazaragi language has been successfully recognised in Australia in April 2009, in the above regard I ( as a president) and cabinet members of U H A met with the senator Chris Even , who used to be minister for Department of Immigeration.The Hazaragi considered as a language by Australian government for the first time in the world.I anticipate the hazara people all around the world will do their best to support hazaragi language .

  5. I think Ismatullah is unaware of the fact or may be he is ill informed or he is got no knowledge of his mother tongue. Not every word in Hazaragi is farsi with a different pronounciation but we do have mongol and turkish words. I suggest him to read more about his mother tongue than making stupid remarks which reflects his state of mind and that is very beautifully explained by Mr Mohammad Younas. I wish he had read it thoroughly before making such statements.
    Its called making a fool of yourself.

  6. I personally believe Hazaragi language is going to be a comprehensive language very soon and why its not yet a complete language is because Hazaras have never paid attention towards their language particularly in Quetta where our language has been mixed with all the other local language that we dont even have them back in Afghanistan. A language needs an entire institution to be researched on build up new words adobt from other languaegs and whole lot of other processes, unfortunately we never bothered ourself to get on to that point. But we are upto it and we acheive for what we are looking. Bravo Mr.Younas

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