The nuqta (Hindi: ?, Persian: , romanized: noqte Urdu: ?, romanized: nuqt?; from Arabic: ?, romanized: nuqta, lit. 'dot'), also spelled nukta, is a diacritic mark that was introduced in Devanagari and some other Indian scripts to represent sounds not present in the original scripts. It takes the form of a dot placed below a character. Also, in another sense deriving from the Arabic script itself, there "are some letters in Urdu that share the same basic shape but differ in the placement of dots(s) or nuqta(s)" in the Urdu script: the letter ? ain, with the addition of a nuqta, becomes the letter ? g?hain.
Examples from Devanagari, the script used to write Hindi, are , qa; , k?ha; , ?a; , za; , zha; , ?a; , ?ha; and , fa. Respectively, these letters modify ?, ka; ?, kha; ?, ga; ?, ja; ?, jha; ?, ?a; ?, ?ha; and ?, pha. The term nuqt? (?) is itself an example of the use of the nuqta. Other examples include (Urdu: ?), qil?, 'fortress'; and ? ? (Urdu: ), K?h?n: a combination of a Perso-Arabic () and a Turko-Mongolic (k?h?n) honorific, now the title of the leader of the Nizari Ismaili sect. Examples of more common words are ?, ba, 'big'; , pa?hn?, 'to read'; ?, p, 'tree'; , A?gr?z?, 'English'; and , kar, 'crore'.
The nuqta, and the phonological distinction it represents, is sometimes ignored in practice; e.g., qil? is simply spelled as ? kil?. In the text Dialect Accent Features for Establishing Speaker Identity, Manisha Kulshreshtha and Ramkumar Mathur write, "A few sounds, borrowed from the other languages like Persian and Arabic, are written with a dot (bindu or nukt?). Many people who speak Hindi as a second language, especially those who come from rural backgrounds and do not speak conventional Hindi (also called Khariboli), or speak in one of its dialects, pronounce these sounds as their nearest equivalents." For example, these rural speakers will assimilate the sound ? (Devanagari?; Urdu: ?) as ? (Devanagari; Urdu: ?).
With a renewed Hindi-Urdu language contact, many Urdu writers now publish their works in Devanagari editions. Since the Perso-Arabic orthography is preserved in Nasta?l?q script Urdu orthography, these writers use the nuqta in Devanagari when transcribing these consonants.
The nuqta is important for accurate transliteration of scripts and representation of speech sounds. Indic scripts with a nuqta include Devanagari, Grantha, Kannada, Odia, Gujarati, Bengali, and Gurmukhi.
Currently, the Telugu script lacks a nuqta. This results in inaccurate transliterations into Telugu. The encoding of the nuqta would enable the proper transliteration of Perso-Arabic consonants into Telugu.