A-Z of Kannada Slangs

August 8, 2007

Compilation & Design: RK

Bejaan dinagalinda ee post baribeku antha sketch haakidde…

(Was wanting to write this post for a long time)

Having studied for most part in Kendriya Vidyalaya, where students from all over India are present, I got to speak more Hindi than Kannada in school. At home, it was always ‘shuddhavaada’ Kannada that I got to hear. The only place where I got to hear Kannada slang was when I played with my friends in the evening. And also when I went to Khan’s cycle shop near Malleswaram 13th Cross where every few days, I got my cycle a new ‘fitting’ or a makeover.

The earliest Kannada slang words I spoke must have been ‘Sakkath’ and ‘Bombaat’. They can be used to describe anything ‘wonderful’ or ‘in plenty’. These two words are really very flexible and can be used in many contexts. Just an example: We can use it to say ‘Sakkath oota’ after having delicious food or say ‘Sakkath kelsa ide’ when you have lots of work pending. Gradually over the years, me and my friends have added more and more to our language, like most of our age.

But offlate, seeing some of my friends, relatives and myself speak at home, I have now come to believe that Kannada slang is localized at the household level!

Having been a regular user of KS (I meant ‘Kannada Slang’) for a long time, I feel, to express more strongly in informal contexts, the use of KS is really effective. For example, If you have seen a horrible movie and want to tell the same to your friend or a relative, you can say either “Film kettdhagide” or “Dabba Film”. I think the latter is more effective and the person will not even have second thoughts (in most cases) of seeing the movie.

Another scenario: Your team is having lots of work in office. But one of the team members (who can understand KS) is seen loitering around from cubicle to cubicle. You can either tell him “Yenu innu kelsane shuru maadilla” or ” Yenu bari othla hodithideera”. The second one will get him started on the job for sure.

Just one more example before signing off: Imagine (at least let’s imagine) India beating Australia by a huge margin and in a royal way. The sentence “Australia team Chindhi Chitranna aaghoythu” is certainly more effective than “Australia team-na India bahala chennagi solisthu.”

The above chart gives you just a sample from the vast lexicon of Kannada slang words. There are lots more, and readers are most welcome to add to the list.

37 Responses to “A-Z of Kannada Slangs”

  1. Ram Says:


    This is really great. Of course you have tempered these slangs a lot than what they are. Truly Excellent and enjoyed reading this.

  2. shark Says:

    The poster is simply awesome.. I wonder where you get your ideas from?

  3. Vasuki Says:

    Sakkat chindi list sisya! :))
    I would like to add two words that convey exactly their opposite meaning – Bhayaanaka/Bhayankara and Kharaab!
    Ex: Adaa bhayankara picturru! (No, that does not mean its a horror film, just that its too good) – may be this was popularized by Kashinath’s Mangalooru Manjunatha!
    Ex: Avlaa magaa, kharabaagidale (my friend used to tell this, this actually means that she is very beautiful!)

    Long live slanguage!

  4. chiroti Says:

    B for Biscuit, C for Colors, F for Figure, O for Osi, S for Shape …and probably the list goes on….:)

    Really enjoyed reading your posts. I am a complete Bengaluru lover, the city I love the most after visiting a lot of places across the world.

    Continue writing, would love to read more…about namma Bengaluru. 🙂

  5. latha vidyaranya Says:

    it makes a nice alphabet chart of kannada slangs!
    are u hanging the chart in the drawing room? narayana onde dindalli ‘gut-hoditaane’.

  6. praneshachar Says:

    olle tarleri nivu yenu bekadru madtira
    hegide swamy nodkondu bariri husharu

    as usual great idea great concept hats off to bellur
    hegappa nivu time manage madtira namgu swalpa
    technology transfer madi

  7. Naren Says:

    hi maams,

    sakkath chart maga. lingo leela kuda kalchobeku. Munche ondu adklasi co. nalli idhaga some official slangs were “Kirik Claims” “Error Kachkonthu” etc.

    The FM’s are simply superb for Kannada slangs. Hats off to Mirchi team. S Fm sucks badly. bad taste.

  8. Ramz Says:

    katarnak kannada slangs
    Rk avre bejaaan thale odsi
    chindi post kottidira
    bombat basheri namm kannada

  9. rk Says:

    dear all,
    sakkath khushi aaythu nimm comments odhi. thanks a lot!!

    after reading your comment, just realised that we can get the word KATARNAKA from KARNATAKA!

  10. neela Says:

    sakkattagide.. 🙂

  11. Veena Says:


    I think Joll is the mumbai slang and its usage is something similar to ‘kuch tho joll kar raha hein’…

    On the lighter note, if this post is read by any maDi ajji.. she will scold you.. ayyo ramakrishNa ningenaayytu… ee tara post ella bardu Rambling with bellur na apavithra maadthidiya ? bega homa(or what ever applicable) maadi shudda maadu 🙂

    enenu idea swamy nimmadu ? hmm….

  12. LOL…sakkathAgide RK…Qoole spelling full mastu….

    I guess for the amount of slangs we have, you should make a second list.

  13. Sisya Says:

    Veena: How can you say Joll is a Mumbai slang?
    Have you not at all heard people say ‘Joll Party’?
    And you have really weird imagination – let alone saying anything to this blogger, you REALLY think any madi ajji will FIRST OF ALL come and sit in front of a comp? take a break.

    RK: Chindi post maga. This A-Z chart is going around in our office like hot cakes. Blog Bombatagide.

  14. hi rk,

    sorry for the slumber yaar,

    Many slangs in bengaluru are regional. Like Rajajinagara Slang, Jayanagara Slang, Kengeri Slang, I too have few slangs from our adda, Jayanagara.

    A – Adda
    B – Baccha
    C – Chathri
    D – Dovv-u
    E – Ebbett-u
    F – Finissh-u
    G – Gange-u
    H – Hushhaar
    I – Idiot
    J – jing-jack
    K – Kobbu
    L – Lodde
    M – Mangya
    N – Noted
    O – Obiraya
    P – Pigure
    Q – Qatarnaak
    R – Rong-u
    S – Slate-u
    T – Tikaaysu
    U – Ugi
    V – Vishil
    W – Waste-u
    X – Politely, not used in kannada
    Y – Yengaithe
    Z – Politely, not used in kannada

    Bartheeni guru, jaldhi kalchkobeku illinda. Illandre Manager amma bandhu eradu ikkthale. namskaara.

    Inthi nimma dosthu,

  15. Vijay Says:

    Good ones RK… keep the creative work going 😉

  16. neela Says:

    nim blogroll kooda A-Z chart idhangide..
    except for E, F , U X Y Z ansutte. 🙂

  17. sindhu Says:

    the frequency of posts on importance of kannada slang is on the rise!

    naanu ondu bardhidhey reeecentaagi, illi nodi

  18. Arun Says:

    he he.. sakkath majaa banthu 🙂

  19. Sathya Says:

    idu thinDipothara varNamaale.
    Fruit salad
    HesarabeLe Paayasa
    PakoDa (Paayasa,PheNi)

    namma makkaLige idella heLikoDabeku, slang naavu heLikoDadiddaroo kalithukonde baruttave

  20. Lakshmi Says:

    Sakath listu mathe bombaat comentsu………ROFL guru eega

  21. mouna Says:

    superb!! 😀

    B for bejaan and K for kanthri, it’s omnipresent in my vocabulary.

  22. Sathya Says:

    Yellakkintha doDDau Chathri….yella kaDe ade colourful, colourless, bere bere size adare yella maaDodu ade kelasa allavra…nimma kaDe yaaru anthavru llavra…athave avara bagge maathanaaDode beDa anthira,,,,sakath chathri nanmaga

  23. kannada_abhimani Says:

    I share a story similar to yours… My dad works in a Nationalized bank and he was posted out of Karnataka till I reached 6th standard… That was when I came to Bangalore and got admitted to K.V.I.I.Sc Yeshwantpura.

    At home it was shudha kannada and my mother taught me how to read and write Kannada (Regional Languages are not taught at K.V). Nice to read this cool article.

  24. Jenny Says:

    these slangs are superb. wats the meaning

  25. Shivaram Says:

    Some more words that might be added are:

    KD (amusing corollary here – the head of the english department at a certain well known college in BLore was Dr. K. Dwarakanath. It is customary in India to refer to college profs by their initials only. Thus R.Suryanarayana would be RS. But the english head always signed himself as KDN !

    Kunthri (Country)

  26. raghu Says:

    Gedde andre enu?

    • PM Vijendra Rao Says:

      I don’t known what is the allusion to KDN. Well, Shivaram, I studied in National College and had the great privilege to work with KDN as the student-secretary of the English Association. It looks you are an alumnus of the same college. If you would like to know more about the man, I would be keen to share the same. To post it here would be irrelevant.
      (It was nice to know from RK, whom I know only fleetingly, that BRC, the teacher at National High School, in the same complex, is RK’s uncle. BRC, to us students, was an enigma. Nobody ever remembers that BRC smiled even once!)

  27. yappa khatharnath collection guru 😉

  28. […] such as Hinglish, or Kanglish as we call in Bangalore. Can you believe it, a large number of slangs in Kannada are actually in English and the words hardly relate to their original […]

  29. Avinash Says:

    Hey guys study sanskrit rather than wasting time like this in searching of slangs !

  30. Good.
    For a fuller collection of Kannada slang words, have a look at http://wp.me/pWyrH-7t

  31. […] such as Hinglish, or Kanglish as we call in Bangalore. Can you believe it, a large number of slangs in Kannada are actually in English and the words hardly relate to their original […]

  32. […] such as Hinglish, or Kanglish as we call in Bangalore. Can you believe it, a large number of slangs in Kannada are actually in English and the words hardly relate to their original […]

  33. s_jendra@hotmail.com Says:

    what is the meaning of aithalakadi

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