And so the Chief comes out with yet another book this one on Indian English. The Man from Madras Musings is yet to get his copy but he speculates if the following terms will be in it:
Cannot able to – this is a relatively recent addition to English and has not yet made it to the Thesaurus and the Oxford English Dictionary which have over the years absorbed most ungrammatical usage as being perfectly all right. Cannot able to is a replacement for cannot do or unable to handle something.
Blunder Mistake – this means a grievous error, to be distinguished from a smaller error, which of course is a mistake.
Untime – improper time for doing something like knocking on someones door at midnight (unless the other party was lying awake and waiting). It is also synonymous with inauspicious.
Vex, torture and tension – three perfectly good words of impeccable pedigree. But they have become household terms thanks to their frequent usage in television serials. MMM understands that the accepted frequency of these words in a half hour episode is one every two minutes.
Creech – an Indian crèche
He/She itself – in keeping with ancient Indian wisdom that defines the soul as being inert and genderless, it has become the norm to qualify every person thus. Common usage is He itself said this.
Hope so – this is used as a phrase that is synonymous with think. It is therefore common to hear sentences such as He was in bad health. I hope so he is dead.
Co-Brother – this defines the brother-in-law. Some have however opined that cobra may be a better and more telling term. We also have co-sister.
Editor’s Note: The Chief says he has left four blank pages at the end for such additions to be included. In fact, a phrase he has just realised needs to be in the next edition is one by two.