Many people assume that Urdu is slowly dying, which is absolutely wrong, says Rana Safvi, author, blogger and historian. In fact, interest in the language is growing with every passing day, she insists. “It’s a cultured language which is very emotive. Most people who can understand Hindustani can understand Urdu because it has borrowed verbs from Sanskrit and Prakrit and has a heavy influence of the Arabic and Persian literary and cultural traditions. That’s why Urdu’s early name was Rekhta (scattered, mixed),” says Safvi, who will be in conversation with historian Irfan Habib for the session, “Dilli Jo Ek Shahr Tha”, on Day 2 of the festival.