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Hajong

A language of India

ISO 639-3haj

Population  60,000 (Karotemprel 1998). Population total all countries: 68,000.
Region  Meghalaya, West Garo Hills District, western side, West and East Khasi Hills; Assam, Goalpara, Nagaon districts; Arunachal Pradesh; West Bengal. Also in Bangladesh.
Alternate names   Haijong, Hazong
Dialects  Banai, Dalu. No prestige or standard dialect recognized. Bhunjia [bhu] and Kawari considered more divergent dialects. Reportedly a creole language. Grierson (1903–1928) called it a dialect of Marathi [mar] for convenience, but noted similarities to Bhatri [bgw], a dialect of Oriya [ori]. Halbi [hlb] intelligible only with difficulty. Intelligible with Hajong of Bangladesh. Lexical similarity: 82%–91% between Banai dialect of Koch [kdq] and mainstream Hajong varieties; 74%–77% between Dalu dialect and mainstream Hajong varieties; 79% between Banai dialect of Koch [kdq] and Dalu; 54%–64% with Assamese [asm]; 63%–67% with Bengali [ben]; 74%–85% with Hajong of Bangladesh.
Classification  Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Eastern zone, Bengali-Assamese
Language use  Vigorous. All domains. Positive attitude. Also use Garo [grt], Assamese [asm], or Bengali [ben].
Language development  Literacy rate in L2: 20–25%; 48% for Meghalaya. Radio programs. TV.
Writing system  Bengali script. Latin script, used in India.
Comments  A Scheduled Tribe. Jharua may be an alternate name. Though linguistically different, the Banai affiliate themselves with the Koch. Agriculturalists. Traditional religion, Hindu.

Also spoken in:

Bangladesh

Language name   Hajong
Population  8,000 in Bangladesh (2005).
Region  Dhaka Division, Rangpur District east to Sunamganj District.
Language map  Bangladesh
Alternate names  Hajang
Language use  Home, village, religion. All ages. Positive attitude. In India, Hajong has more prestige than in Bangladesh due to more population and language development. Positive attitude between the two. Nearly all use some Bengali, young speak it better. Educated use standard Bengali. Nearly all can buy and sell in Bengali. An increasing number (young and educated) can use Bengali for abstract concepts. Some speak Garo [grt].
Language development  Literacy rate in L1: 20% can read Hajong in Bengali script. Literacy rate in L2: 20% in Bengali.
Comments  Peasants. Hindu.