Thursday, October 17, 2013

Shuddh Desi Cryptic Crossword - in Hindi

I wrote once about the characteristics of Hindi that make it incompatible with cryptic wordplay, and what could be done to make cryptic crosswords in Hindi possible. Our ever-enterprising friend Kishore rose to the challenge of creating a full-blown 11x11 Hindi grid - the first cryptic puzzle in the language that I know of.

I am delighted to share the crossword with you. As a bonus for the one who cracks it, there is a prize to be won. It should be easy for anyone who knows basic Hindi, do give it a try.

The crossword has gone through rounds of scrubbing and polishing since the time its first draft reached my inbox last month. The grid was altered, many clues fine-tuned. We learnt some interesting lessons about challenges unique to grid-filling in Hindi, and have recommendations for Hindi crossword setters that I'll share in a separate post. [Update (25th October 2013): Here it is - Setting a Hindi Crossword: Lessons Learnt and Recommendations]

Due to my active interfe… er, involvement in the project, Kishore insists that I take joint credit for the crossword. Since it makes him happy, I solemnly abide by his wish and squeeze my name into the byline. This crossword is “Set by Kishore and Shuchi”.

hindi-cryptic-crossword-grid3

आर-पार

1 शराबी चुनाव मे भाग ले सकता है (4)
4 छोटी अनुपमा हो या अनुराधा, शायद मंगल कर दे कृपा (4)
8 मधुबन से फूटा हुआ बम निकाल कर रचा हुआ संगीत (2)
9 मतलबियों के होंठ (2)
10 जंगल में तमाशा (भाग १) - ' मातृभूमि ' (3)
11 सचिन ने इनको त्यागा ? सत्य है (2)
12 चिराग का मालिक, जॅस्मिन का साथी (4)
14 पहले ला, अंत में देख - मिलेगा बड़ा आंकड़ा (2)
17 यह सीमा बताए कि किसके होने से जब है जान पिक्चर बने ? (2)
19 किसी भी दिशा मे प्रणाम (3)
21 रेल का बदलना कड़वा है (3)
24 अमृतराज की जीत ? (3)
25 मरुभूमि जैसा है...किसी तरह से ले तीर और आ (3)
26 नेता लोग इस के साथ जनार्धन को भी जोड़ लेते हैं (3)
28 नूतन है, पूँछ काटो तो भी (3)
30 मदन, न जा ! देख उत्साह (2)
33 एक का आधा इसे देता है, पर देता नहीं ? (2)
35 इस के पंजे का रस, अच्छा लगता है चाय में, बब्बन खान के नाटक मे (4)
37 बहन, दीक्षा का पहला अक्षर दो बार बोल दो (2)
38 क्रिकेट खेलनेवाला कोहली प्रचंड है (3)
39 दुआ के साथ-साथ चिकित्सा का तरीका (2)
40 रामेश्वरं से लौटते हुए अपना ... (2)
41 ... शहर खोजो, जो राजधानी है उस प्रदेश की जहाँ जवाब मिले (4)
42 शास्त्री पर हमला - इसलिए छुट्टी है इस दिन (4)

नीचे की ओर

1 अभिनेत्री लड़की शराब सहित (4)
2 चेतन या नूतन, दोनों के पास है जिस्म (2)
3 लोभ : लेकर आ ! लंगर चलाना शुरू कर ! (3)
5 अनु की लात है बड़ी तेज़ (3)
6 अग्नि पूजा हिन्दी में - अँग्रेज़ी में सिगार ? (3)
7 दिमाग से मनचली चली गयी (4)
12 इस राज्य में बहुत असामी रहते हैं (3)
13 थोड़ा जल्दी पकाओ, प्रकाश देनेवाला (2)
15 चिट्ठी लिखना खतरे से खाली है रे (2)
16 परेशानी से हुआ अलग (2)
18 पहली तारीख़ से पहले शायर लिखता है ऐसी रचना (3)
19 ये ___ डरे-डरे, ये जाम भरे-भरे, ज़रा पीने दो (3)
20 छोटे विवेकानंद का छोटा नाम (3)
21 कभी थे वह राष्ट्रपतिजी, आने वाले समय में साधारण (3)
22 शास्त्रीजी का रंग (2)
23 दो कलों के बीच अटका हुआ है यह (2)
27 यान बदलकर बन गया अट्ठाईस (2)
29 देखनेवाला प्रारंभ में वीर क्षत्रिय कन्या को देखता है (3)
31 इसे दो बार मारो और मिट जाये ग़म (2)
32 कदरदान से मिले ऐसी ऊँचाई (2)
34 जंग की वजह ? तलवार के म्यान में छुपाया हुआ थोड़ा-थोड़ा कड़वा राज़ (4)
35 दृढ़ प्रधानमंत्री थे (3)
36 टाटा की अनमोल चीज़ (3)
37 अनारकली की आख़िरी मंज़िल ? (3)
38 विषय का घातक भाग ? (2)
40 मेवाड़ से मिला सूखा खजूर, शायद (2)

PDF format available here.

Notes On The Crossword

  1. Word lengths are in syllables e.g. each of the words पहला, प्रथम, प्रदान will be enumerated as (3).
  2. Complex consonants go into a single cell e.g. वर्ग will be split into two cells, the first with , the second with र्ग.
  3. In wordplay, the matras may be treated independently of the letters e.g. राम may be anagrammed to give मार or मरा.

Solving Instructions

Send in your completed entries to shuchi [at] crosswordunclued [dot] com, latest by 25th October 2013. Points to note:

  1. Solution words should be in Devanagari script. [A tool like Quillpad can be used for typing in Hindi.]
  2. Entries should be legible and readable in a standard text or image reader. PNG, Excel, Word formats are all OK. Update (19th October 2013): Included a solution template for sending in your answers. Use it if you like.
  3. Entries should contain annotations for the answers. Any annotation format is all right – words or symbols, Hindi or English – as long as how you arrived at the answer is clear.

If you have any related questions, please post them in the comments section.

The Prize

The winner can choose any one of these prizes:

  • Flipkart gift voucher worth INR 1000
  • Amazon US gift card worth USD 15
  • Amazon UK gift card worth GBP 10

The solver with the maximum correct answers will win. In case of ties, the winner will be picked by a computerised lucky draw.

The solution to the crossword and the winner's name will be announced in a follow-up post after 25th October 2013.

All the best. I hope you enjoy solving the crossword as much as we enjoyed setting it.

Update (29th October 2013): Solutions and winner announcement.

Related Posts:

If you wish to keep track of further articles on Crossword Unclued, you can subscribe to it in a reader via RSS Feed. You can also subscribe by email and have articles delivered to your inbox, or follow me on twitter to get notified of new links.

12 comments

Lakshmi Vaidyanathan said...

@Shuchi & Kishore Very interesting.:)

Nadathur Rajan said...

Can we send in a scanned copy of hand solved puzzle? It is difficult to type, the link given leads nowhere.

Nadathur Rajan said...

Got Quillpad. It works nicely.

Shuchi said...

@Lakshmi: Thanks. Hope to see your all-correct entry :-)

@Nadathur Rajan: Copy of hand-solved puzzle is fine too. Just in case the Quillpad site is down, Google Input Tools is a good alternative.

रवि said...

हिंदी में वर्ग पहेली बनाना तो वाकई कठिन है, और कंप्यूटर पर तो और भी कठिन.

Shuchi said...

@रवि: हमने एक वर्ग-पहेली ही बनाई - आप तो पूरा का पूरा ब्लॉग हिन्दी में लिखते हैं ! *वाह*

Lakshmi Vaidyanathan said...

@Shuchi
Hope so :)

Chaturvasi said...

I can't say I know Hindi. But I am able to read and understand most of the clues and I think I have also got the answers to many of them. Perhaps if I start filling in, I should be able to complete it.

If I say Hindi is a national language, people jump at me. They say Hindi is only an official language of India.

Yet many Indians in parts where Hindi is not the State language know it. Many of them are well-versed in it and are even capable of trying their hand at setting a crossword in that language. Others like me are somewhat conversant with that language.

How far are southern languages embraced by those who don't speak that language or those who don't live in southern India? I don't want any answer to this question but will only want to know why Hindi cannot be called a national language.

Kishore said...

"Since it makes him happy, ...

Thanks for making me happy, Shuchi. I cherish the interaction we've had over this one. It was real fun and you really deserve your name in the byline. Actually, it should have come before mine, but for your insistence ...

Kishore said...

CV, I personally think it is partly one's affinity and partly the need to learn languages. For example, in Goa, Konkani is available as a language in schools, but very few take it up even as a third language, after taking English and Hindi as the first two. A vast majority prefer to take French (and to a lesser extent, Portuguese). The answer to this is quite simple: the languages are being rated on their commercial usefulness. Wiki says most Konkani speakers are bilingual. The simple reason for this is most of them have migrated and settled in lands which are not their own and hence have learnt the local language.

Similarly, exposure to languages and one's own interest in learning them probably plays a major role at an individual level. My father was posted to many places and I made it a point to learn the local language, not necessarily to the level of proficiency, but enough to get by in town. I was born in Madras and spent a part of my first year there, not enough to learn the language, except for a rudimentary 'YennaDa kozhi' to the passing fowl. I learned how to read and write Tamil in my late teens out of sheer interest. I practice is mercirlessly when I visit Chennai.
Once I was trying to negotiate with an auto chap near Madras Central, when a neatly dressed young man asked me touched my shoulder. He had probably picked me as a likely victim based on the quality of my Tamil. He narrated the usual spiel about having lost his wallet and needing money for a return ticket. Feeling bad for him, I asked him where he hailed from. "Goa", he replied. And to the consternation of the chap, I started off in Konkani, and before I could stop, he realised the game was up and scarpered.

I can proudly claim to be one of the few persons who have a gold medal in Sanskrit and can read and write Urdu. Again, I learnt Urdu out of sheer interest and even penned some romantic couplets in the heat of youth. But, sometimes mental blocks show their effectiveness: I have never been able to learn Malayalam and Tulu.

In the North-South debate, I usual pretend to be neutral, saying I am a West Indian. In this situation, I think the reason for more South Indians knowing Hindi is because quite a large number of them went to Delhi and Calcutta on work in government and private service and felt the need to learn. Those who did not migrate did not think it necessary or useful, in spite of the Hindi Prachar Sabha in Chennai. On the other hand, few North Indians came south in olden days and the ones that did were in the higher hierarchies of the government and hence could interact with the bureaucracy without knowing the local language. So, they remained blissfully ignorant of the local languages (and there are many in the South). Nowadays, lot of north Indians come to the South due to the employment offered by the IT industry. In Hyderabad, they can probably get away without knowing Telugu. I cannot speak for Chennai, but in Bangalore I know at least one who has learnt meaning of Kannada words like 'saala' and 'Chikamagalur' ...

Shuchi said...

@Kishore: If more people fought as much as you to give credit to others, the world would be a much nicer place :-) I thoroughly enjoyed our interaction over it too.

Shuchi said...

@CV Sir: Along with exposure, necessity and interest, I find resemblance to already known languages a big factor contributing to how quickly we learn a new language. I picked up some Bengali in college as I had Bengali friends. I can read the script and follow some talk in the language. It didn't take conscious effort, the likeness with Hindi helped.

My Kannada vocabulary, though very limited, has good range thanks to its assortment of sources. Some words from the radio, some from my domestic help, some from those that casually slip words like 'saala' and 'Chikamagalur' in conversation.