Today I went to some Muslim muhalla to meet some people. A bit of background is necessary. I am a bengali and know only three languages: Bengali, Urdu/Hindi and English. The people in the region I went to are mostly poor and uneducated.
The visit was pleasant. I talked with some people about this world and the next. No, that was wrong. I mostly listned. Anyway, before going there, I was worried that here people may not understand me at all; I don’t know the local language, Kannada! It has happened in the past. Hired drivers do not understand me, the shopkeepers do not understand me; it’s too much pain.
There was no problem at all because all of them spoke and understood Urdu.
Many of them speak far better than I do.
So here is the situation: you go to a muslim-dominated area, you will hardly face any problem, most of them understand Urdu. Most of the Muslims who come here also know Urdu. When you go to a non-Muslim dominated (poor) area, you have immense difficulty in communicating.
I think this is a good thing that almost all Muslims speak Urdu. Non-Muslims should also learn it(hindi should be enough) so that we have no problem in communicating.
I will end with a quote of one of the persons I met: “Urdu ki paidaish hui Lakhnau mein, usne jawani bitayi Hyderabad mein, aur burhi hui Bangalore mein” (Rough Translation: Urdu was born in Lucknow, spent it’s youth in Hyderabad and she is spending her old age at Bangalore).