Punjab (Punjabi ਪੰਜਾਬੀ/پنجابی)

Punjab is a geographical region on the border between Pakistan and India which includes Punjab province in Pakistan and the states of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Chandigarh and some northern parts of the National Capital Territory of Delhi in India. The name of the region is Persian in origin and means “(The Land of) Five Waters” referring to five rivers that flow in the region. Punjab has a long history and rich cultural heritage. The people of the Punjab are called Punjabis and their language is called Punjabi. The main religions of the Punjab region are Islam, Sikhism and Hinduism.

The area now known as the Greater Punjab comprises what were once vast territories of West Pakistan and northern western India. The bigger section of the Punjab at about 60% lies within Islamic Republic of Pakistan and 40% within Republic of India where it has been further divided into three states; Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.

The Pakistani Punjab now comprises the most densely populated province in Pakistan. In India, the Government further sub-divided Punjab into the modern Indian states of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, and the Union Territory of Chandigarh, which serves as the capital for both Punjab and Haryana. A small part of the region was incorporated into Delhi, which expanded a bit northward post-independence. The Pakistani part of the region West Punjab includes the Islamabad Capital Territory. Besides the Indian Punjab, the region also includes the Jammu state of India. The populations of the region are divided as 86,084,000 (2005) in West Punjab (Pakistan) and 24,289,296 (2000) in the present-day State of (East) Punjab (India). Punjabi is spoken by (approximately) 60% of the entire population in Pakistan mainly in the Punjab province, making it the most spoken language in Pakistan, and 92.2% in Indian Punjab. (3% of overall Indian population). The capital city of undivided Punjab was Lahore, which now sits close to the partition line as the capital of West Punjab; while the capital of East Punjab is Chandigarh, 248 km (154 miles) from Lahore. Indian Punjab uses the Gurmukhi script, while Pakistani Punjab uses the Shahmukhi script.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *