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  Language and Demography

With a population of about 5.2 million (1991 Census: 4,280,261), and with Chandrababu Naidu at the helm of state governance, the city buzzes with activity.

Linguistically, Andhra Pradesh is a Telugu State, and Telugu, spoken by the majority, is the state's official language. As it happens with all other languages, Telugu acquires different intonations in different regions. Thus, besides the pure Telugu spoken in places like Vijayawada and Guntur, there is the coastal Telugu of the coastal region, the 'border' Telugu like that in Nellore which is significantly influenced by the neighbouring state's language, and the Telangana Telugu spoken in Hyderabad and surrounding Telangana region.

In Hyderabad, Urdu enjoys a special prominence. During the Nizam's rule, Urdu was the language of the administration, the judiciary and educational establishment. As such, many from the earlier generation are well versed in it. However, more than Urdu, it is the Deccani language that is the people's language. It is a practical blend of Hindi, Urdu and other local languages including Marathi and Kannada, and has a typical Hyderabadi flavour. Just a sentence or two of Deccani and you know that the person using it is a Hyderabadi.

As the erstwhile State of Hyderabad also had large areas where people spoke Kannada and Marathi, these two languages are spoken by considerable sections of Hyderabad's population. The other languages widely spoken here are English, Hindi, Tamil, Malayalam, etc. The beauty of the city lies in its unique Deccani zaban, Telugu hospitality and historic edifices, that represent the elegance of Hyderabad. It is also reflected in the typical Hyderabadi tehzeeb (behaviour) and universal camaraderie. An additional feature of today's Hyderabad is the fast paced, IT-savvy life style of the modern generation.

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