World Hindi Day or Vishva Hindi Divas is celebrated on January 10 to promote the Hindi language worldwide. January 10 marks the first World Hindi Conference that took place in 1975, in Nagpur, Maharashtra. In 2006, then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh declared January 10 as World Hindi Day. Another objective of the occasion is to present Hindi as an international language. Vishwa Hindi Divas is celebrated at the Indian Embassies and government offices that organize lectures on different topics.The word Hindi originated from the Persian word Hind, which means the land of the Indus river. Hindi is the first language of around 430 million people around the world.Apart from India, the language is also spoken in Nepal, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Suriname, Fiji and Mauritius. Hindi and Nepalese share the same script – Devanagari.Many English words have been derived from Hindi, such as chutney, loot, bungalow, guru, jungle, karma, yoga, thug, avatar and so on.In linguistic terms, Hindi belongs to the Indo-Iranian sub-family of the Indo-European family of language.Hindi has been influenced and enriched by Turkish, Arabic, Persian, English and Dravidian (ancient South India) languages.The earliest form of Hindi was called ‘Apabhramsa’, which was an offspring of Sanskrit. In 400 AD, poet Kalidas wrote Vikramorvashiyam in Apabhramsa.The first book believed to be published in Hindi was Prem Sagar. The book was published by Lalloo Lal and depicted tales of Krishna.

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