One of the main characteristics of Indian English is the use of native expressions. While Indians may use Hindi, Tamil, Sanskrit, Urdu, Malayalam and other words because they don’t remember/don’t want to use the English ones/for stylistic reasons, more often, they will simply talk about unique things that English has no words for.
a) Angrezi is a Hindi word for English
b) Chappals are slippers used outdoors.
c) Diwali is a festival of light.
d) Purdah, a Hindi word for a veil/curtain, is the manifold practice of preventing men from seeing women by means of segregation and concealment.
e) Wallah is a Hindi word for a tradesman: doodhwallah is the milkman (doodh = milk), chaiwallah sells chai (tea) and dhobiwallah washes clothes.
One of the important processes that speakers of mainstream English have always followed is to adapt foreign expressions on the spot or give them English versions and adapt them then, letting them enter mainstream English dictionaries and stay there, as a part of the general richness of the language.
Let us have a few examples.
bazaar (from bāzār, marketplace), pajama (from Payjamo, a kind of trousers), shampoo (from champu, scalp massage)
curry (from kari, sauce), pariah (from paraiyar)
Aryan (from Arya-s, noble, honourable), avatar (from avatarana, descent), Himalaya (from himalayah, place of snow), musk (from musk-a, testicle)
bungalow (from banglA, (house) in the Bengal style)
But the most important feature of Indian English is its creativeness: Indians no longer rely on expressions handed down to them from major Englishes, they go and coin their own English expressions from English material instead. More about the attractive outcomes next time.