Indian Sign Language

Print

A language of India

Alternate Names
Indo-Pakistani Sign Language, Urban Indian Sign Language
Population

5,930,000 in India (2014 IMB). Possibly over 10 million profoundly deaf, assuming 0.6%–1.2% of the general population (over 1.21 billion according to the 2011 census), which is a typical range for developing countries.

Location

Scattered.

Language Status

6a (Vigorous).

Dialects

Bangalore-Chennai-Hyderabad Sign Language, Kolkata Sign Language, Mumbai-Delhi Sign Language. There is considerable sign language variation in south Asia, which has only been partially assessed. Some scholars report that most varieties in India and Pakistan are dialects of ISL, while others feel at least some varieties should be recognized as separate languages. Some influence from British Sign Language [bfi] in the fingerspelling system and a few other signs developed indigenously in India. Related to Nepalese Sign Language [nsp].

Language Use

Deaf schools mainly do not use ISL, but vocational programs often do. Many educated Deaf people in Bangalore also use ASL (Panda 2012). Nearly all educated deaf are bilingual in a language of wider communication to some degree.

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: Below 2%. Male literacy rate is higher than female as men more likely to attend school. TV. Videos. Dictionary.
Other Comments

2% or less of deaf children attend deaf schools. In 2001, interpretive training courses initiated in Mumbai by the Ali Yavar Jung National Institute for Hearing Handicapped.

Also spoken in:

Expand All Collapse All