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The "Indian languages TRANSliteration" (ITRANS) is an ASCII transliteration scheme for Indic scripts, particularly for the Devanagari script.

The need for a simple encoding scheme that used only keys available on an ordinary keyboard was felt in the early days of the RMIM newsgroup where lyrics and trivia about Indian popular movie songs were being discussed. In parallel was a Sanskrit Mailing list that quickly felt the need of an exact and unambiguous encoding. ITRANS emerged on the RMIM newsgroup as early as 1994.[1] This was spearheaded by Avinash Chopde, who developed a transliteration[2] package. Its latest version is v5.34. The package also enables automatic[3] conversion[4] of the Roman script to the Indic version.

ITRANS was in use for the encoding of Indian etexts - it is wider in scope than the Harvard-Kyoto scheme for Devanagari transliteration, with which it coincides largely, but not entirely. The early Sanskrit mailing list of the early 1990s, almost same time as RMIM, developed into the full blown Sanskrit Documents project and now uses ITRANS extensively, with thousands of encoded texts. With the wider implementation of Unicode, the traditional IAST is used increasingly also for electronic texts.

Like the Harvard-Kyoto scheme, the ITRANS romanization only uses diacritical signs found on the common English-language computer keyboard, and it is quite easy to read and pick up.

ITRANS transliteration scheme[edit]

ITRANS transliteration scheme[3] is given in the tables below. The ITRANS method is without using diacritics, as compared to other transliteration methods. While using ITRANS, for proper nouns, first letter capitalization is not possible since, ITRANS uses both capital and small letters in its lettering scheme.


Table: Vowels
Devanagari Gurumukhi Telugu Kannada Tamil Malayalam Bangla Sinhala ITRANS
[a] ^e
[b] ^o
अं [c] ਂ/ ੰ అం ಅಂ অং M/.m/.n
अः ಅಃ ಅಃ অঃ H
अँ ਂ/ ੰ అఁ অঁ .N
[d] .h [e]
[f] .a
[g] ఓం OM, AUM


The Devanāgarī consonant letters include an implicit 'a' sound. In all of the transliteration systems, that 'a' sound must be represented explicitly.

Standard Indic consonants[edit]

Table: ITRANS Devanagari consonants
ka kha ga gha ~Na
cha Cha ja jha ~na
Ta Tha Da Dha Na
ta tha da dha na
pa pha ba bha ma
ya ra la va
sha Sha sa ha La

Irregular consonant clusters[edit]

Devanāgarī ITRANS
क्ष kSa/kSha/xa
त्र tra
ज्ञ GYa/j~na
श्र shra

Prenasalized consonants[edit]

Sanskrit Sinhala ITRANS
ङ्ग ~Nga
ञ्ज ~nja
ण्ड NDa
न्द nda
म्ब mba

Consonants with Nuqta[edit]

Devanāgarī ITRANS
क़ qa
ख़ Ka
ग़ Ga
ज़ za
फ़ fa
ड़ .Da/Ra
ढ़ .Dha/Rha
व़ wa

Dravidian consonants[edit]

Devanagari Tamil Malayalam ITRANS


  • vikipiiDiyaaविकिपीडिया
  • bhaaratभारत
  • raamराम
  • lakShmaNलक्ष्मण
  • iNDiyaaइण्डिया
  • maiM hindii meM Taaip kar saktaa huuM |मैं हिन्दी में टाइप कर सकता हूँ।
  • aao hindii meM kampyuuTar pe likheMआओ हिन्दी में कम्प्यूटर पे लिखें


Since ITRANS was primarily designed for Sanskrit (and other modern Indo-Aryan languages), it lacks full-coverage for Indic scripts of other languages. Specifically, the support for Dravidian short-vowels 'e' and 'o' is considered ambiguous (since Indo-Aryan phonology does not differentiate them from long-vowels 'E' and 'O'). Also, the schwa used in languages like Bengali ([ɔ]) and Assamese ([ɒ]) differs from that of other languages ([ə]), causing a dissonant feeling when typing those languages. Moreover, although both Bengali and Assamese use Eastern Nagari, the phonology of Assamese varies from that of Bengali to a significant extent, causing more friction while typing Assamese.

The support for many phones of other languages like Dravidian, Hindustani nuqtas, Sinhala etc. is considered patchy and not consistent across implementations due to lack of standardization. Also, almost no ITRANS implementation fully supports languages like Kashmiri, Sindhi, etc.

New version[edit]

The ambiguity around Dravidian short-vowels 'e' and 'o' support has been addressed with a new ISO15919 compliant coding scheme, which is uniform across all supported languages/scripts, including nukta. The old version ITRANS 5.3 is maintained for backward compatibility.

The changed ones are listed below:

Changed mapping
Devanagari Gurumukhi Telugu Kannada Tamil Malayalam Bangala ITRANS
ऎ  e

The newly launched revamped package supports both the old ITRANS V-5.3 scheme as well as the ISO15919 scheme.

In addition, the new package can be customized for any specific INPUT codes.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Introduced in Parivardhita Devanagari to write Dravidian short-vowel 'e'
  2. ^ Introduced in Parivardhita Devanagari to write Dravidian short-vowel 'o'
  3. ^ added as anusvāra
  4. ^ virāma/halant
  5. ^ absence of 'a' after a consonant should also kill the schwa automatically
  6. ^ avagraha:elision during sandhi
  7. ^ Om symbol


  1. ^ "An early post from 1995 referring to ITRANS effort going on RMIM newsgroup". Retrieved 15 December 2015.
  2. ^ Aksharamukha transliteration tool. Akshara Mukha is an Asian script (two way) converter freeware. It converts between 20 different South Asian & East Asian scripts. It also supports 5 major Latin transliteration conventions such as IAST, ISO, Harvard Kyoto, ITRANS & Velthuis. You can access the project from here. While using the tool, 'source' can be set to for example: ITRANS or Harvard-Kyoto, and 'target' can be set to a particular script like Devanagari-Hindi.(When you are using a north Indian script, tick the box: Remove ‘a’.) It can work in reverse too, for example from Hindi to Latin by ISO transliteration.
  3. ^ a b "ITRANS (version 5.34) website describing scheme. (Avinash Chopde)". Retrieved 15 December 2015. Online Interface to ITRANS (Online converter tool from Latin script using ITRANS to various Indic scripts. Reliable source at converter tool page gives the mapping spreadsheet (has clear tilde sign). Scheme for Devanagari and tables for all the languages covered. Ultimately the conversion tool follows the mapping spreadsheet. Source code at GitHub itrans
  4. ^ Google Transliteration (supports Indic languages) Online and downloadable tool for transliteration by Google. (Also additionally uses ITRANS but older version 1)
  5. ^ "Online Interface to ITRANS".

External links[edit]