Sindhi is commonly grouped under the languages that belong to the Indo Aryan group of languages. It was in the year 1853 when the Arabic script was used for representing Sindhi language in the written format.
Till then there were no alphabetic (or written representation) recorded of Sindhi earlier before that. The most earliest written representation of Sindhi language can be found in the 14th century poem written by Mamot Saints.
UPSC Sindhi Syllabus
Answers must be written in Sindhi (Arabic or Devanagari script).
- Origin and evolution of Sindhi language-views of different scholars.
- Significant linguistic features of Sindhi language, including those pertaining to its phonology, morphology and syntax.
- Major dialects of the Sindhi language.
- Sindhi vocabulary-stages of its growth, including those in the pre-partition and post-partition periods.
- Historical study of various Writing Systems (Scripts) of Sindhi.
- Changes in the structure of Sindhi language in India, after partition, due to influence of other languages and social conditions.
Sindhi literature through the ages in context of socio-cultural conditions in the respective periods :
- Early medieval literature upto 1350 A.D. including folk literature.
- Late medieval period from 1350 A.D. to 1850 A.D.
- Renaissance period from 1850 A.D. to 1947 A.D.
- Modern period from 1947 and onwards.
(Literary genres in Modern Sindhi literature and experiments in poetry, drama, novel, short story, essay, literary criticism, biography, autobiography, memoirs, and travelogues.)
Answers must be written in Sindhi (Arabic of Devanagari script).
This paper will require the first-hand reading of the texts prescribed and will be designed to test the candidates’ critical ability.
References to context and critical appreciation of the texts included in this section.
- “Shah Jo Choond Shair” : ed. H.I. Sadarangani, Published by Sahitya Akademi (First 100 pages)
- “Sachal Jo Choond Kalam” : ed. Kalyan B. Advani Published by Sahitya Akademi (Kafis only)
- “Sami-a-ja Choond Sloka” : ed. B.H. Nagrani Published by Sahitya Akademi (First 100 pages)
- “Shair-e-Bewas” : by Kishinchand Bewas
(“Saamoondi Sipoon” portion only)
- “Roshan Chhanvro” : Narayan Shyam
- “Virhange Khanpoije Sindhi Shair jee Choond” : ed. H.I. Sadarangani Published by Sahitya Akademi
- “Behtareen Sindhi Natak” (One-act Plays) : Edited by M.Kamal Published by Gujarat Sindhi Academy.
- “Kako Kaloomal” (Full-length Play) : by Madan Jumani
References to context and critical appreciation of the texts included in this section.
- ‘Pakheeara Valar Khan Vichhrya’ (Novel) : by Gobind Malhi
- ‘Sat Deenhan’ (Novel) : by Krishan Khatwani
- ‘Choond Sindhi Kahanyoon’ (Short Stories) Vol. III.:Edited by Prem Prakash, Published by Sahitya Akademi.
- ‘Bandhan’ (Short Stories) : Sundari Uttamchandani
- ‘Behtareen Sindhi Mazmoon’ (Essays) : Edited by Hiro Thakur, published by Gujarat Sindhi Akademi.
- ‘Sindhi Tanqeed’ (Criticism) : Edited by Harish Vaswani : Published by Sahitya Akademi.
- ‘Mumhinjee Hayati-a ja Sona Ropa varqa’ (Autobiography) : by Popati Hiranandani
- “Dr. Choithram Gidwani” (Biography) : by Vishnu Sharma
More about the language
The language of Sindhi is divulged in a controversy relating to its historic origins. Some experts believe it existed even before the dawn of Sanskrit language in India. Some people do not mark these arguments and connect it to its location and say it thrived in the Indus valley many centuries ago. Both arguments have their own set of historical debates backed by facts and linguistic records, yet none of them have been proved till now.
Shah Abdul Latif has been revered and considered to be the greatest poet of Sindhi language till date. Qadi Qadan has written beautiful poems in the language and he is also considered as the first important poet of the Sindhi language era. Shah Abdul Latif rose to prominence in the later part of 17th century.
Shah Abdul Latif has been commended by many language experts for his outstanding depiction of beauty through Sindhi language. Not only is his depiction considered to be drawn towards heavy emotions and deep invoked thoughts, he has also penetrated into the minds of the readers and has given beautiful art forms for his era. His beautiful collection named Rasalo has made a mark in the minds of the readers of yesteryear and stands relevant till date.
Bhai Sami gave in a plethora of his art works written in Sindhi language and made a remarkable and deep impact on his readers. Abdul Wahab is another remarkable poet who beautified language in the 18th century. It was in the earlier part of 18th century that the subject matter of poems that involved deep thoughts, deep thinking and connection with the holy god or the ultimate truth started fading out to make way for the next generation with a different mindset and thinking.
Mystic thinking and poems on powers related to mythology got replaced by a more subtle subject – ‘romance’. It was exactly during this time that Ghazals were brought inside the Sindhi language. What set out as a very heavy language considering mythological powers etc became a store house of romantic poems and lyrics. Thus the 18th century was a kind of transformation period for Sindhi language.
This transformation was initiated and taken forward by Khalifo Gul Mohammed. The original Sindhi language with the introduction of Ghazals leading to a romantic style of presentation came to be known as ‘diwan’. Kishinchand was also a great poet of this era who romanticized nature in his poetry and wrote poems that sang the praise of nature and how nature and humanity are intertwined, in a more romantic form. The traditional love stories underwent a change or make over and came back to mother nature but in a different manner.
For long, Sindhi became the famous language for a host of poems and poetry was the flavor until many centuries. Writing in prose form became a new thing and it was the British who started this trend. Suddenly books on grammar, religion, philosophy, art, science, society, humanity etc sprung in prose literature in many forms at various corners.
Some of the noteworthy names that brought prose form of literature to the mainstream can be mentioned here. Munshi Udhoram apart from Mirza Khalich Beg are important names to be noted here. When prominent names took to prose form from poetry, they shifted their focus to short stories and novels to give a new rise to Sindhi literature. Sushila J Lalwani, Gobind Malhi, Shaikh Ayaz, Ayaz Ali Rind etc gave a new impetus to the world of story writing in Sindhi.
Sindhi has come a long way from the days of mythological and romanticized poetry forms to stories and novel literatures. Today we can find the emergence of Sindhi drama forms apart from the written establishment of ballads, dohas, spiritually acclaimed verses, sonnets and many other intricate forms of literature.
The central place of Sindhi literature or the most prominent place of Sindhi literature in India namely the Sindhi Adabi Sanghat is a central place for many Sindhi literary persons to meet on a common platform and discuss the evolution and growth of Sindhi language.
Many measures have been signified over the years for the language to prosper and spread its wings in different direction and also provide a beautiful channel to bring in budding and emerging writers in the language to conquest their talents.
On a broader perspective, Sindhi is the language spoken in the Kutch region and the speaking population is around 3 million. After India gained independence, most of the Hindus belonging to the Sindhi speaking community chose to migrate to the Indian shores and established their settlements here.
So, these people came to be called the Sindhis in India. Today Sindhis have spread their wings the world over and globally they have made their presence felt everywhere and at every other profession.
It is quite interesting to note that Sindhi does not belong to any state as a native language in particular. During its formation, Sindhi is a language that got greatly influenced by Baluchistan and majorly by Sanskrit as well. Though many claim the language to be older than Sanskrit itself, the language does show great amount of resemblance with Sanskrit.
The language shows a great mix of Persian and Arabic words and is not much influenced by other languages prominent around that region. Usually languages borrow many aspects from local influences but Sindhi seems to be devoid of any particular south or north Indian language in particular.
The most unique and striking feature of Sindhi is of the word formation in the language. It has been noted by linguists that almost every word you find in Sindhi ends with a vowel and is distinct from others. This quality helped develop a rich vocabulary of not just common words in daily usage, but words that have a musical bend and create a rich feel in every possible literature form.
Sindhi also has around six dialects that are recognized by the government of India. Like many other languages, this language too has undergone progression and evolved from successive transitions in spoken and literary forms.