PM visits India while new figures show no UK students studying main Indian language in school


No UK pupils are currently studying for a Hindi language GCSE or A Level, despite it being the fourth most widely spoken language in the world, new figures reveal.

cameron-indiaWhile David Cameron begins a three-day visit to India in an attempt to promote a ‘great partnership’ with Britain, a parliamentary written answer to a question by Labour MP Stephen Twigg shows there are currently no pupils studying for a GCSE or A-level in Hindi in the UK.

In response, Twigg said Cameron and education secretary Michael Gove needed to “make sure more young people were studying languages like Hindi and Mandarin so the UK could compete in the modern economy”.

“Hindi is the 4th most commonly spoken language in the world, but no students in the UK study for a GCSE or A Level. This government are presiding over a narrow, backward-looking education system,” he said

“How can we expect to train the entrepreneurs and business leaders of the future if we don’t give them the tools to help with global trade?” he said.

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  • Simon Whitten

    English is the language of business and trade in India, not Hindi. There’s value in teaching Mandarin but I fail to see why Hindi should be a priority.

  • Rob Newman

    Totally agree with Simon. English is the main language of India, all the children are taught it and many have a very good standard. No even every indian speaks Hindi as there are so many languages, this is especially the case in the south. Learning Hindi is pointless for any UK pupil.

  • A1

    The link shows no one doing A level Hindi. Doesn’t say anything about GCSE. Do you have a separate source for that claim?

  • http://www.facebook.com/jamie.bloodworth James Bloodworth
  • NT86

    Hindi is a beautiful language, but as Simon Whitten says, not a language of business or trade. What’s strange is that in the Indian constitution, it’s one of the main languages though it’s essentially confined to a belt of northern and central regions.

    In Britain, Indian communities tend to speak Punjabi or Gujarati (though most are likely to know Hindi as well) for that matter.

  • desidaaru

    Indian here.

    There are more than 30 states in India, and Hindi is only spoken in 4 or 5 of them.
    Indians from different states communicate in English; it is the language of trade and business in my country.

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