Vanishing Bangla Wordings

Sudip Bhattacharyya

A few words seem to have gone out of Bangla lexicon and vocabulary, at least in the metro cities. These are ‘Mangal’ and ‘Kalyan’. In a materialistic world, emphasis is on success’ and prosperity. Wholesomeness inherent in ‘Kalyan’/’Mangal’ is no longer appreciated.

With growing urbanization, the schism between humans and nature is also increasing.
Earlier, children would go out and play together in dust. Now they are more at home all by themselves fiddling with electronic gadgets. So playing is not associated with dust. No more ‘Kheladhulo’. Dhulo (dust) has now relevance to us only as an object for advertising detergents. Bidding adieu to joint-family system, we no longer need a ‘Prangan’ or  ‘Uthan’ (courtyard) for ‘Ghoroa Sabha’ or in-house chit chat.

So do we not need ‘Nirala’, Nirabata’, ‘Niribili’ and ‘Nihshabda. Sound of silence is not heard, neither is the Music of nature. There is no respect for privacy and introspection. So, no ‘Nivrite’ or ‘Ekante’.  Cacophony is music, ‘Nirabata’.is unsmart.

Similarly for ‘Sneha’, ‘Aashirwad’, ‘Pranam’, and   ‘Shraddha’ The relationship between young and elderly is also transforming to first name calling like in the West. So, two-way traffic of blessings and respect are seen, if at all, on birth and death only.  Alas, No need for ‘Snehashirbad , ‘Pronam’ and ‘Shraddha’. To question, denigrate and decry everything is the order of the day --- another unfortunate notion we have uncritically adopted from the West.

Another two forgotten words are ‘Fashal’ and ‘Parban’. The former has association of hard labour and corresponding visible output in the field. With urbanisation and shift of livelihood from agriculture to manufacturing (rarely now in Bengal) / servicing (mostly), these are not obvious and have lost relevance. The latter word has association with seasonality and festivity. ‘We have joy, we have fun, we have seasons in the sun’. There is hardly any joy left in current Bengal and their cosmopolitan metro-centric smart people feel seasonality in Durga-puja, X-mas and Id only, if at all. With prolonged summer and short rains and shorter winter coupled with work-pressure, ‘Rituparibartan is hardly felt and leisurely enjoyed. Same is with ‘Hemanta’ and ‘Basanta’.

Shall we come to ‘'Tripti’ and ‘Prapti’? Former would mean satisfaction of yearning. Latter has the sense of fair earning or even more than fair. Greed is the operating word now, as reflected in successful selling of Ponzi (finance) schemes: there is now no sense of satisfaction of desire, ie ‘Tripti', and the unlimited unbridled craving has no sense of fairness.

‘‘Abalupti’ and ‘Obasaan’ are no longer used as there is endless craving for anything and everything.

It is now the field-day of instant gratification, so no Pratiksha’,or ‘Apeksha’
‘Charitra’, ‘Pratyay’ and ‘Drirata’- these are no longer in use because Bangalees find it too heavy an ancestral baggage to carry.

‘Hasya’  is roaring at ‘Attahaashya’ but ‘Kautuk’ is gone because there is rarely any sense, neither any time for urbane humour --- it has been chased away by ribaldry.

Gunthan / Ghomta are not needed anymore and therefore seen only in fashion shows. Nobody feels ‘Kuntha’ any more.

Jukti, ‘Aasha’ and ‘Nirasha’ - there is little scope for the former and for the latter, it is mostly unreasonable
Sadly, penultimately, the loss of two words namely ‘Aadarsha’ and ‘Mulyabodh only adequately reflects the utter decadence in our society.
With Hindiaisation, ‘Farakh’ is in, out go ‘Parthakya’ and ‘Tafath’

‘Sthairjya’ and ‘Prashanti’ are other examples, but, then, of course, I have lost all of it, being a Bangalee in a metro-city.

Vol. 47, No. 42, Apr 26 - May 2, 2015