Ipoh's 70-Year-Old Malay Man Speaks Fluent Tamil, Learned It from His Indian Friends When He Was Only 9!

Speaking multiple languages not only facilitates communication but can also enhance your employability. Malaysia, a culturally diverse nation, boasts a rich linguistic tapestry that includes Malay, Mandarin, English, and Tamil. 

While not everyone can master all four, Malaysia's multicultural environment encourages language diversity, allowing people to communicate with ease…

In Ipoh, Perak, a remarkable story unfolded as a 70-year-old retired postman named Tajudin surprised everyone with his fluent Tamil-speaking abilities, acquired without formal schooling.

ipoh's 70-year-old malay man speaks fluent tamil, learned it from his indian friends when he was only 9!Photo via BERNAMA

"I started learning Tamil when I was just 9 years old, thanks to my Indian friends. I spent a lot of time with them," Tajudin revealed.

Tajudin attributed his interest in learning the language to the close friendships he formed with Indian peers during his childhood. Over the decades, he had the opportunity to immerse himself in the language and "have fun" with it, making Tamil feel like a natural mode of communication with his Indian friends.

One of Tajudin's friends, who had known him for 20 years, expressed his astonishment at Tajudin's fluency in Tamil, saying, "We initially conversed in Malay, but I was amazed to discover his proficiency in Tamil."

Tajudin's ability to speak Tamil not only facilitated conversations but also proved valuable in his previous job, where he occasionally had to use the language. Some colleagues even sought his guidance in learning Tamil.

"Even my manager asked me to teach him the Tamil language," Tajudin recalled.

In an interview with BERNAMA, Tajudin encouraged young people to seize the opportunity to learn additional languages beyond their native tongue, particularly in today's competitive world.

"We'll be left behind if we speak only one language," he emphasized.

Tajudin also highlighted the broader significance of language, viewing it not just as a means of communication but also as a tool for achieving positive outcomes, fostering unity, and celebrating Malaysia's multicultural identity.

"To strengthen communication and promote unity, language is of paramount importance in our multicultural country," he remarked.

For those proficient in more than one or two languages, how has it benefited your communication and career?