The beauty of Ha – sound in Badaga

Badaga or as some like to call Badagu /Badugu, is a ‘classic‘ and independent language spoken by Badagas of the Blue Mountains or the Nilgiri hills, in north -west Tamil Nadu, bordering Karnataka and Kerala.

Though it is unique by itself, it can be said to be akin to Halaiya (old) Kannada more than any Dravidian language. But due to the geo – political reasons, it is more and more identified with Tamil.

Unfortunately, some over enthusiastic scholars and elders have been trying to eliminate the sound ‘ha -ஹ ‘ which is an integral part of the Badaga language and replace it with ‘ah- அ ‘ with some unacceptable justification that these letters (as well as letter like Ja ஜ, Sa ஸ, Sha ஷ ) do not form part of pure/classical Tamil though they are very much in day to day usage. .

Let me elaborate and justify why ha and other letters, like ஜ, ஸ, ஷ etc should remain as a core letters/sounds in Badaga.

A Badaga village is known as Hatti (ஹட்டி) and not as அட்டி.

Our deity Goddess is Hethe – ஹெத்தே and not Athe எத்தே

Some day to day words starting with ha

Ha – ஹ – yes, (Ha ennu – ஹ என்னு – Say yes)

Hagey – ஹகெ – enmity

Haavu – ஹாவு – snake

Hoo – ஹூ – flower, instect

Hui – ஹூய் – hit, tamarind

HaNa – ஹண Money

Hachche – ஹச்செ -Green(alive)

Hallu – ஹல்லு – tooth/teeth

Habba – ஹப்பா – festival

Hannu – ஹண்ணு – fruit

Haddhu – ஹட்து – eagle

Haththu – ஹத்து – ten, climb

Haalu – ஹாலு – milk,

Haavu – ஹாவு – snake

HaLLa – ஹள்ள – river

Hasu – ஹஸு – hunger,

Haasu – ஹாஸு – spread

Hade – ஹடெ -lie down

Haada – ஹாட -plain

HaNe – ஹணே – grass field

HeNa – ஹெண – dead body

Hidi – ஹிடி – catch

Hegilu – ஹெகிலு – shoulder

Hemmaththi – ஹெம்மாத்தி – female/lady/wife

Hendharu – ஹெண்டரு – wife

Hesaru – ஹெசரு – name

Hola – ஹொல – field

Honnu – ஹொன்னு -bridal money ( Rs200 given to the bride’s father to confirm the wedding)

Hogu – ஹோகு – go (Hoittu Banne – ஹோய்ட்டு பன்னெ -good bye)

Horasu – ஹொராசு -outside

Hotte – ஹொட்டெ – stomach

Hoththu – ஹொத்து – sun

Huttu – ஹுட்டு – (blood) relative (huttu Nattu – ஹுட்டு நட்டு – family & friends)

Hudichchu – ஹுடிச்சு -dress up

Huli – ஹுலி – tiger

Huri – ஹுரி – fry ( Huri madakke – a clay pot with a hole used for frying)

HuNNu – ஹுண்ணு – wound

HuNNavae – ஹுண்ணவெ – Full Moon

Hubbathale – ஹுப்பதலெ Hullikkallu – ஹுலிக்கல்லு, Hatti hesaruguva – Names of villages

The importance and necessity of retaining these sounds/letters like Ha ஹ, Ja ஜ, Sa ஸ, Sha ஷ

Jana ஜன – people
Janni ஜன்னி – cold
Jakkadha –  ஜக்கத –  the famous hatti (village)

Hethe nangava Harichali – ஹெத்தே நங்கவ ஹரிச்சலி Let Hethe bless us !


One response to “The beauty of Ha – sound in Badaga

  1. Dr.Joghee Arjunan

    You should not follow Tamil blindly. We should follow Kannada language for our phonetics. The Tamil Nadu government can not force us to leave our culture


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