Bhojpuri Language - Number of Speakers

Number of Speakers

According to an article published in Times of India, a total of 90 million people in India speak Bhojpuri. An estimated 20 million people in Bihar and 70 million people in Uttar Pradesh speak Bhojpuri as their first or second language. There are 6 million Bhojpuri speakers living outside of Bihar and Purvanchal. These areas include Nepal, especially Birgunj, Mauritius, Fiji, Suriname, Guyana, Uganda, Singapore, Trinidad and Tobago, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Canada, and the United States. This makes the total Bhojpuri speaking population in the world close to 160 million. However, the official figures of the 2001 Indian Census are much lower, showing 33 million speakers of the Bhojpuri dialect under the Hindi language sub-family. Parichay Das (dr. Ravindra Nath Srivastava) tried best through maithili-bhojpuri academy, delhi government as secretary to recognise bhojpuri language in constitution. He organised high level literary-cultural seminars, programmes and published 'Parichhan' a bhojpuri-maithili magazine, a unique literary journal in India. Parichay Das has written post modern poems and did pioneer work in literature.

Bhojpuri dialects, varieties, and creoles are also spoken in various parts of the world, including Brazil, Fiji, Guyana, Mauritius, South Africa, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. During the late 19th century and early 20th century, many colonizers faced labor shortages and were unable to obtain slaves from Africa due to the abolition of slavery; thus, they imported many Indians as indentured servants to labor on plantations. Today, many Indians in the West Indies, Oceania, and South America still speak Bhojpuri as a native or second language. Bhojpuri speaking people belong to central-eastern zone of India.

The Bhojpuri language has been heavily influenced by other languages in many parts of the world. Mauritian Bhojpuri includes many French, Hindi and English words, while the language spoken in Trinidad and Tobago includes mainly English words.

The Sunday Indian, Bhojpuri Association of India and Global Bhojpuri Movement has launched a worldwide movement for the Recognition, Promotion and Preservation of Bhojpuri Language, Art, Culture, Literature and society.

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