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Chhattisgarhi (Devanagari: छत्तीसगढ़ी) is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by 18 million people in the Indian state of Chhattisgarh. It is an Eastern Hindi language and is closely related to Awadhi and Bagheli.

छत्तीसगढ़ी, छत्तिसगढ़ी
Native toIndia
RegionChhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Odisha, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh
Native speakers
18 million, partial count, including Surgujia (2011 census)[1]
(additional speakers counted under Hindi)
Devanagari (formerly Odia alphabet)
Language codes
ISO 639-3Either:
hne – Chhattisgarhi
sgj – Surgujia

Chhattisgarhi has been known by the name Khaltahi to surrounding hill-people and by the name Loriya to speakers in neighboring regions of Odisha to Chhattisgarh.[citation needed] The speakers are concentrated in the Indian state of Chhattisgarh and in adjacent areas of Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, and Jharkhand. Some linguists also treat this language and Nagpuri/Sadri languages as dialects of Odia.[3] Chhattisgarhi cultural and political movements, with origins from the 1920s, affirmed Chhattisgarhi linguistic and cultural identity and sought greater autonomy within India. It was 1 November, 2000 when 16 districts in the state of Madhya Pradesh became the new state of Chhattisgarh.



Chhattisgarhi is most closely related to other Eastern Hindi languages such as Bagheli and Awadhi, forming part of the East Central Zone of the Indo-Aryan languages , the Indian branch of the Indo-European language family.

Its precise relationship to Hindi is complex and as with other members of the Hindustani dialect continuum, its status as a dialect or separate language is to some degree a judgment call. According to the Indian Government, Chhattisgarhi is an eastern dialect of Hindi, but it is classified as a separate language in Ethnologue.

Chhattisgarhi has five different main dialects on the basis of geographical division:

  1. Kedri (Central) Chhattisgarhi
    This is purest form Chhattisgarhi, which is spoken in most of the Mahanadi Basin. Kedri Chhattisgarhi is uninfluenced by any other languages except Hindi. Mostly spoken in Bilaspur, Durg, Bemetara, Raipur, Rajnandgaon, Dhamtari, Kanker district of Chhattisgarh.
  2. Utti (Eastern) Chhattisgarhi
    Utti Chhattisgarhi, also known as Laria, is mostly spoken in Raigarh, Mahasamund, Gariaband, Raipur district of Chhattisgarh.
  3. Budati / Khaltahi (Western) Chhattisgarhi
    Marathi-language influence can be seen in Khaltahi Chhattisgarhi. Mostly spoken in Balaghat (Madhya Pradesh) and Kabirdham, Bemetara district of Chhattisgarh.
  4. Bhandar (Northern) Chhattisgarhi
    Also known as Sargujia Chhattisgarhi, it is mostly spoken in Koria, Surajpur, Sarguja, Jashpur, Balrampur district of Chhattisgarh.
  5. Rakshahun (Southern) Chhattisgarhi
    Mostly spoken in Dandkaranya region (Bastar) of Chhattisgarh. Godi and Halbi are other dialects which are widely spoken.


Eastern Hindi dialects consist of Chhattisgarhi, Awadhi and Bagheli. All three dialects are closely related to each other. Chhattisgarhi, due to its heavy indigenous vocabulary and grammar, has always been treated as a distinct language. Awadhi and Bagheli are very closely associated with each other, Bagheli due to its regional association from Baghelkhand are considered as different dialects, otherwise it is considered a southern form of Awadhi.

Comparison of word list
English Chhattisgarhi Awadhi Bagheli
and अउ अउर अउर
father ददा बाप बाबू
right जेवनी दाहिना दाए
tree रुख पेड़ पेड़
you तें,तेहा तें तय
come आवव आओ
good बने बढ़िया बढ़िया
name नाव नाम नाम
pond तरिया तालाब तलाउ


In addition to Chhattisgarhi Proper, the dialects of Chhattisgarhi are Baighani, Bhulia, Binjhwari, Kalanga, Kavardi, Khairagarhi, Sadri Korwa, and Surgujia. Surgujia is considered by some to be a distinct language.[4]


Chhattisgarhi, like Hindi, is written using the Devanagari script, although it used to be written using the Odia script.

Chhattisgarhi Language DayEdit

Chhattisgarhi Language Day (Chhattisgarhi Diwas) is celebrated every year on November 28 across the Indian states of Chhattisgarh. This day is regulated by the State Government.

Film industryEdit

After the formation of the new state, films in Chhattisgarhi attracted artists everywhere around India. World-renowned vocalist Lata Mangeshkar and many others have sung songs in Chhattisgari. As the film industry is growing at a fast pace, it is now popularly known as Chhollywood.

See alsoEdit


  • G. A. Zograph: Languages of South Asia, 1960 (translated by G.L. Campbell, 1982), Routledge, London.


  1. ^ 16.3 million for Chhatisgarhi and 1.74 million for Surgujia.
    Chhattisgarhi at Ethnologue (21st ed., 2018)
    Surgujia at Ethnologue (21st ed., 2018)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Chhattisgarhi". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ Nava Kishor Das (2012). Odisha. Seagull. p. 111. ISBN 978-81-7046-293-4. A Odia dialect.
  4. ^ Surgujia at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)


  • C. K. Chandrakar, "Chhattisgarhi Shabadkosh"
  • C. K. Chandrakar, "Manak Chhattisgarhi Vyakaran"
  • C. K. Chandrakar, "Chhattisgarhi Muhawara Kosh"
  • Chhattisgarh Rajbhasha Aayog, "Prashashnik Shabdkosh Voll. I & II"

Web magazine of Chhattisgarhi language गुरतुर गोठ

External linksEdit

  • [1] webpage on Chhattisgarhi language by Sanjeeva Tiwari, Durg.