The terror of nicknames

When female fans discovered that macho Hrithik Roshan was called Duggu they went wild. Fans found Rishi Kapoor’s nickname Chintu to be cute and adorable. That the Kapoor sisters Karishma and Kareena were called Lolo and Bebo was outed by film glossies long before the actresses made their mark on the marquee. These two are often referred to by their nicknames even in feature stories or interviews and it still sounds stylish.

Nickname of hrithik roshan | bollywood stars

For the rest of us, though, things may not be as great. It can get quite embarrassing if our nicknames are called out in public, when we have long outgrown those names. To cite an example, a senior manager Tathagata Bose was in midst of a board meeting when a family member called in, insisting upon speaking to Piklu! A visibly embarrassed Mr. Bose had to explain to his peers and subordinates that he was the Piklu whom the family member was looking for. It was amusing for them to associate the name Piklu to the grey-haired senior manager.

bollywood nicknames for girls

If, as a new parent, you intend to call your child by a nickname, ensure that it is something easy to remember, which the child can answer to, that it is something to which the child can relate to. To easily arrive at a nickname, you can simply chop off at least one syllable from the end of the name. For example, Shalu from Shalini, Jon from Jonathan, or Deepu from Deepak. You may also add an “i,” or a “y” to a shortened version of given name. Like Simi from Simran or Raji from Rajeshwari or Gopi from Gopal. And then, of course, there are Dolly, Honey, Sona, or Mona which can follow your child right upto eternity (though of course they may decide to drop it much before that!)

Nicknames are such a difficult thing, depending on how you got them. A child may be formally christened Ghanshyamdas Tirodimal (perhaps keeping in mind the legacy he could inherit) but will be fondly called Golu at home. Likewise, a child named Nagamani may be fondly called Mani at home and a Michael may be called Mike or Mickey.

At times, the original names are not even long-winded or difficult to pronounce, yet out of affection, they are shortened. So, a child answering to Sonia in school is called Sonu at home. Sometimes, the home name isn’t even related to the original formal name. Like a Pankaj could be called Babloo at home. Or a Mandira may be called Mili.

Every Indian community has their own unique idiosyncrasies when it comes to nicknames. Bengalis, for instance, have special terms for home names and formal names – ‘daaknaam’ and ‘bhalonaam’. Babai, Bhappa, Bappi, Tutun, Gogol, Papai, Tatai, Shona, Moni, Mona, Mimi, Tuktuk, Tultul, Jhumpa, Tumpa, Rinkuand Chotku are some common examples of Bengali daaknaam. Whereas, Pakya (for Prakash), Gauti or Gotya (for Gautam), Shalu (for Shalini), Chinu (for Chintan or Chinmay) and Bunty are a few examples of Marathi nicknames.

nicknames for boys - bollywood nicknames

Who hasn’t heard of BappiLahiri, the famous Bollywood music composer? Today everyone knows him as BappiLahiri but few are aware that his bhalonaam or birth name is AlokeshLahiri. Mithun Chakraborty’s birth name is Gourang Chakraborty.

So if you’re going to give your child a nick name, pick something that won’t sound comical as she grows up. Or one she can get rid of quickly, at the very least.

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