6.7 Imperative Construction

Instructor Video: Imperative in Urdu

Imperative sentences are sentences that express requests, commands, order, instructions, etc. Like in English, the subject “you” is dropped. However, unlike English, Urdu has three different forms of the pronoun ‘”you”, which are used in three different sociocultural contexts, as explained below.

English Urdu Uses 
You تو  تو is used for someone who is younger in age and/or in a lower socio-economic class. It is also used with someone who is very intimate to the speaker such as a friend, mother, and God.
You تم  تم is used for someone who is of the same age group and/or same socio-economic class.
You آپ  آپ is used for someone who is older in age and/or higher socio-economic class. It is used for anyone to whom you want to show respect.

Forms of Imperative Construction Based on Three Different Forms of “You”

The forms for “تو” and “تم” are used for instructions and commands. Whereas the form for “آپ” is used for requests.

Verbs “تو” Drop the نا- part of the verb “تم” Drop the نا- part and add “و”  “آپ” Drop the نا- part and add “ئے” 
“To eat”  کھانا کھا کھاؤ کھائیے 
جانا “To go” جا جاؤ جائیے 
آنا “To come” آ آؤ آئیے
پڑھنا “To read/study” پڑھ پڑھو پڑھئیے  
لکھنا “To write” لکھ لکھو لکھئیے 
سونا “To sleep” سو سوو سوئیے 
بولنا “To speak” بول بولو بولئیے 
سننا “To listen” سن سنو سنئیے 
بیٹھنا “To sit” بیٹھ بیٹھو بیٹھئیے 
بنانا “To make” بنا بناؤ بنائیے 

Some Irregular Imperative Forms

Verbs “تو “ “تم” “آپ”
کرنا “To do” کر کرو کیجئے
لینا “To take” لے لو لیجئے
دینا “To give” دے دو دیجئے
پینا “To drink” پی پیئو پیجئے

Giving Instructions and Commands

To give instructions and commands in Urdu, the “تو” and “تم” forms of the verb are used.

For example:

  • -یہاں آ/آؤ “Come here.”
  • -گھر جا/جاؤ “Go home.”
  • -میری کتاب لا/لاؤ “Bring my book.”
  • -مجھ سے بات کر/کرو “Talk to me.”
  • -جان کو اپنی کار بیچ/بیچو “Sell your car to John.”

Making Requests

To make requests in Urdu, the “آپ” form of the verb is used.

For example:

  • -یہاں آئیے “Please come here.”
  • -گھر جائیے “Please go home.”
  • -میری کتاب لائیے “Please bring my book.”
  • -مجھ سے گفتگوکیجئے “Please talk to me.”
  • -جان کو اپنی کار بیچئے “Please sell your car to John.”

Use of ذرا 

In Urdu, formal imperatives do not necessarily imply “please”. Just as in any language, the tone of voice, context, and personal relationships affect politeness.

The adverb ذرا (just, a little)/ مہربانی کر کے (kindly) is used to make a command milder/extra polite.

For example:

  • -ذرا/مہربانی کرکے یہاں آئیے “Please come here.”
  • -ذرا/مہربانی کرکے گھر جائیے “Please go home.”
  • -ذرا/مہربانی کرکے میری کتاب لائیے “Please bring my book.”
  • -ذرا/مہربانی کرکے مجھ سے گفتگو کیجئے “Please talk to me.”
  • -ذرا/مہربانی کرکے جان کو اپنی کار بیچئے “Please sell your car to John.”

Negation of Imperative Construction

In order to make negative imperative commands and negative requests in Urdu, words like “نہ ” and “مت”can be used.

For example

  • -یہاں نہ/مت آؤ “Do not come here.”
  • -گھر نہ/مت جاؤ “Do not go home.”
  • -میری کتاب نہ/مت لائیے “Please do not bring my book.”
  • مجھ سے گفتگو نہ/مت کیجئے “Please do not talk to me.”
  • -ذرا/مہربانی کر کے جان کو اپنی کار نہ/مت بیچئے “Please do not sell your car to John.”

Note: Use of “نہ”post-verb in an imperative construction will make it a request and not a negative sentence.

For example:

“نہ” before verb for negation “نا” before verb for request
-یہاں نہ آئیے“Please do not come here.” -یہاں آئیے نا “Please come here.”
-مجھ سے گفتگو نہ کیجئے “Please do not talk to me.” -مجھ سے گفتگو کیجئے نا “Please talk to me.”
-میری بات نہ سنئے “Please do not listen to me.” -میری بات سنئے نا “Please listen to me”


a) Please write ten sentences of instructions and ask your friend to enact them, and vice-versa.

b) Make a list of ten things that you want your parents to do for you. Please use the “آپ” form of the imperative construction.

c) Please choose the correct form of the pronoun “you”.



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