British Council’s 70 years in India; 70 Indian origin featured in Oxford English dictionary

ZeeBiz WebTeam | Nov 23, 2018, 01:16 PM IST

At the launch of '70 Years in India' celebration in Mumbai, British Council has unveiled a list of 70 Indian-origin words, making their way to the mainstream English. After consulting with language experts from the Oxford University Press, these words have already been featured in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), said a DNA report.


With the inclusion of these 70 words in the English language, the influence of the Indian origin words is clearly visible. However, about 900 words are already a part of the English language.

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“From Cashmere and pyjamas to bangles, shampoo, and jungle, many words have influenced people around the world. We thank the people of India who have contributed to the language for over 400 years,” Alan Gemmell, Director, British Council India, told DNA.

Image source: British Council


The 70 words that were selected out of the 120 words shortlisted from over 900 words of Indian origin in the OED are atoll, avatar, bandana, bangle, bhelpuri, blighty, bungalow, calico, cashmere, catamaran, cheetah, cheroot, chintz, chit, choky, churidar, chutney, coir, cot, cowrie, cummerbund, cushy, curry, dal, dinghy, dharma, doolally, dungarees, godown, gymkhana, gunny, guru, jodhpurs, jungle, jute, karma, kedgeree, khaki, lacquer, langur, lilac, loot, mandarin, mantra, mogul, mongoose, mulligatawny, myna, nirvana, palanquin, pashmina, patchouli, polo, pukka, punch, pundit, purdah, pyjamas, raita, roti, shawl, shampoo, swami, tank, teak, tiffin, thug, veranda, yaar, and yoga.

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An exhibition will be held at Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (CSMVS) as a part of the celebration along with a music week.

Image source: British Council


Gemmell reportedly said, “We will also be providing scholarships to 70 women this year for studies in the UK across the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. Last year, we spent Rs 18 crore to provide scholarships to 104 Indian women.”

Image source: British Council


This year marks 70 years of the British Council’s presence in India. The organisation serves as the cultural relations body for the UK.

Image source: British Council