Khandeshi language

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Ahirani, Khandeshi
खान्देशी, अहिराणी
Native toMaharashtra, India
Native speakers
1.86 million (2011 census)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3Either:
khn – Khandeshi
ahr – Ahirani (duplicate code)
Location of the Khandesh region in India
Location of the Khandesh region within Maharashtra

Khandeshi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken in the Khandesh region of north-west Maharashtra and also in Gujarat.[4] It consists of Khandeshi proper, and the Dangri and Ahirani dialects.[5] Kunbi and Rangari also are dialects. Ahirani dialect of this language is mostly spoken. Devanagari script is used to write Khandeshi language.[6] The words "Ahirani" and "Khandeshi" are sometimes used interchangeably: Ahirani as the caste-based name (after Ahirs), and Khandesh as the region-based name. The Census of 1911 , 1921 and 1931 counted the Ahirani speaking people as Gujaratis[7] but in latter decades they've been recognized as a different language.



Labial Alveolar Retroflex Palatal Velar Glottal
Nasal voiced m n (ɳ) ŋ
voiceless p t ʈ k
aspirated ʈʰ
voiced b d ɖ g
breathy ɖʱ dʒʱ
Fricative s ʃ ɦ
Approximant voiced ʋ l j
breathy ʋʱ
Rhotic voiced r
  • /n/ is heard as a retroflex [ɳ] when before retroflex stops.


Front Central Back
High i u
Mid e o
Low-mid ɐ
Low a

All vowels can be short or long.[8]


  1. ^ "Statement 1: Abstract of speakers' strength of languages and mother tongues - 2011". Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. Retrieved 2018-07-07.
  2. ^ Ernst Kausen, 2006. Die Klassifikation der indogermanischen Sprachen (Microsoft Word, 133 KB)
  3. ^ "Khandeshi alphabet, pronunciation and language". Retrieved 2023-06-20.
  4. ^ "Khandeshi alphabet, pronunciation and language". Retrieved 2023-06-20.
  5. ^ Robert Vane Russell (1916). pt. II. Descriptive articles on the principal castes and tribes of the Central Provinces. Macmillan and Company, limited. pp. 19–.
  6. ^ "Khandeshi alphabet, pronunciation and language". Retrieved 2023-06-20.
  7. ^ P. 12535 Parliamentary Debates, House of the People: Official Report By Indian Parliament, Lok Sabha
  8. ^ Chitnis, Vijaya Shridhar (1964). The Khandeshi dialect (as spoken by farmers in the village of Mohadi in the Dhulia Taluka). Poona: Deccan College.