Indianisms and the IELTS

The words and phrases below were quite often used locally in the IELTS Writing or Speaking when I was teaching/examining IELTS candidates in the UAE. Their usage is cultural but may not really fit the test situation where standard forms of English are required. You can see the standard English substitutes on the right.

Indian English Standard English
Please do the needful. Please attend to this matter.
As per my last letter … As mentioned in my last letter …
Your earliest response is requested. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
This has reference to your invoice … With reference to your invoice …
a reputed company a reputable company
I am agreed with you/ I am agree I agree with you
Please revert to me. Please don’t hesitate to contact me./Please get back to me.
from your side/from my side from you/from me
I am in good spirits and I hope the same for you. I hope you are well.
Myself Rajeev. I stay in Delhi. My name’s Rajeev. I live in Delhi.
A market is there. There’s a market.
The pollution is very less here. There is much less/far less pollution here.
go to shopping/go for shopping go shopping
Where are you putting up? Where do you live?
I am not getting you. I don’t understand.
departmental store department store
My father is/has expired. My father is dead/has died/died.
The thief decamped with the loot. The thief ran away/escaped with the money/jewels etc.
I’ve completed my graduation. I’m a graduate.
I’m doing my post-graduation. I’m doing a Masters/PhD.
I was topper in my year. I came first/top in my year.
I want to get admission to IIT. I’m applying for a place at IIT.
I passed out of college. I’m a graduate./I graduated./I graduated in …
I’m giving my final year exams next month. I’m doing/sitting my finals.  I’ve got my finals.
I’m appearing for interview tomorrow. I have/I’ve got an interview./I’m doing an interview.
I am pursuing my studies in Engineering. I’m doing Engineering.
today morning this morning
These days I used to walk every day. These days I walk every day.
each and every every or each (but not both)
I want to avail this opportunity I want to take advantage of/I want to avail myself of this opportunity.
I belong to Delhi. I come from Delhi.
I stay in Delhi only. I live in Delhi.  I actually live in Delhi.
last to last week/next to next month the week before last/the month after next
three days back three days ago
Even I am working at the bank. I work at the bank, too.
This book is too interesting. This book is really interesting.
My father is in service. My father is working.

English Dictionaries
Creative Commons License Photo Credit: John Keogh via Compfight

You can read more about this in 10 classic Indianisms: ‘Doing the needful’ and more | CNN Travel. Lots more here in 100 Indianisms – Idioms and Indianisms unique to India.

Hope it helps you to be more conscious of whether the language you are using will be understood by your reader/listener when you write your papers or express your ideas/opinions during the IELTS interview.

Until next time!

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