HomeHome  CalendarCalendar  FAQFAQ  SearchSearch  RegisterRegister  MemberlistMemberlist  UsergroupsUsergroups  Log inLog in  



Go down 

Number of posts : 23
Age : 69
Registration date : 2007-12-14

PostSubject: LANGUAGES SPOKEN IN PAKISTAN   LANGUAGES  SPOKEN  IN  PAKISTAN Icon_minitimeMon Dec 17, 2007 11:23 am

Languages of pakistan



The home of the Baluchi language is, as the term implies, Baluchistan, but it extends considerably beyond the usually recognized limits of that province. On the east, it reaches the Indus and as far north as Dera Ghazi Khan, although the country along the banks of the Indus is inhabited mainly by those whose language is either Lahnda or Sindhi. Northwards, it extends to near Quetta, or the 30th degree of north latitude; and as we go westward, it is found even further than this, up to the valley of Helmund, where Pashto becomes the main language. South of Quetta, it is the language of the greater part of Baluchistan and extends westward to (Persian) Iranian Baluchistan. The Baluchi language today, with its two distinct dialects, common in the districts of Kalat, Chagai, Makran, Kharan, Lasbela and Karachi. It extends as far as the Gulf States, Persia and to certain parts of Afghanistan, Iranian Baluchistan and Seistan.

The western dialect is known by different names in different regions, such as Kalat, Makrani, Panjguri, Bakhshani, Karachi, Saheli (coastal), etc. In fact, every region has certain spoken peculiarities of its own. The western dialect has borrowed words from Persian languages, while the eastern dialect has derived its vocabulary from Sindhi, Siraiki, Punjabi and Pushto, due to the proximity of these languages, yet both dialects are well understood, and the Baluchi language remains the same.


The term Hindko is often used to refer to the speakers of the Hindko language, but in popular usage it may designate the language as well. The NWFP Imperial Gazetteer (1905) regularly refers to the language as Hindku.

More than one interpretation has been offered for the term Hindko. Some associate it with India, others with the Hindu people, and still others with the Indus River, which is of course the etymological source of all these terms. Long before independence Grierson, in the Linguistic Survey of India, employed the term Hindko to mean "the language of Hindus" (viii, 1:34) Linguists classify the language into the Indic subgroup of Indo-European languages and consider it to be one of the Iranian languages of the area.

An estimated 2.4 per cent of the total population of Pakistan speak Hindko as their mother tongue, with more rural than urban households reporting Hindko as their household language. The speakers of Hindko live primarily in five districts: Mansehra, Abbottabad, Peshawar, and Kohat in NWFP, and Attock in Punjab. Addleton states that "Hindko is the most significant linguistic minority in the NWFP, represented in nearly one-fifth of the province's total households." In Abbottabad District 92 per cent of households reported speaking Hindko, in Mansehra District 47 per cent, in Peshawar District 7 per cent, and in Kohat District 10 per cent (1986).


The Kashmiri language is the language of Kashmir. In dialectic form it has spread southwest into the valley of Kastrawar, while to the south, it has crossed the Panstal Range. The term Kashmiri is Persian or Hindu and is derived from the Sanskrit Kasmirika. It is not used by the people of Kashmir, who call their language Koshir.

The language belongs to the Indo-European family, the Indo-Iranian subgroup, and the Dardic branch. While it is closely related to another member of the Dard group, Shina, due to centuries of Indian influence its vocabulary shows signs of Indian languages. Kashmiri is bounded on the north by the Shina language. On the west it is bounded by the Chibhale and Punchi dialects of Lahnda. To its south it has on the west the Dogri dialect of Punjabi. The southeast of Kashmiri is Padari, a western Pahari dialect similar to Bhadrawali. On the rest of the eastern side of Kashmiri there are Tibeto-Burman dialects, all separated from the Kashmir valley by inhospitable ranges of mountains and thus in no way affecting its language.


Kohistani is the language of Indus Kohistan, a vast mountainous range situated between Chilas and Chitral which constitutes an administrative district of the NWFP. The Kohistani language has been classified as a Dardic language. On a higher level, Kohistani has been grouped into the northwestern group of the Indo-Aryan (Indic) languages. On the highest level, Kohistani is a member of the Indo-Iranian and Indo-European language families. Kohistani (Kohiste is the local pronunciation) is the name most commonly used for the major language spoken on the west bank of the Indus River in Kohistan. Kohistani is also a general term which is used for other mountain languages in the NWFP (e.g. Torwali, Kalami, etc), so the term "Indus Kohistani" is being adopted to differentiate it from others.

According to the 1981 census, there are 468,365 people in Kohistan, roughly divided on each side of the river. This means there are more than 200,000 Indus Kohistani speakers (on the west bank of the Indus River) and more than 200,000 speakers of the Kohistani variety of Shina (on the east bank of the Indus River). No written literature exists in Kohistani, nor is there any reported oral literature.


Often spelled Panjabee, Punjabi is from the word Punjab, which is the geographic name of the area in which the language is spoken. The word Punjabi is a Persian composition of punj (five) and aab (water, river). The area of Punjab, which extends from the plains of the Indus valley to the Ganges valley in India, has five rivers, the Chenab, Ravi, Jhelum, Sutlej and Beas. Punjabi belongs to the Indo-Aryan subgroup of the Indo-European family. One author claimed that the origin and growth of the Punjabi language was "a result of administrative divisions of northern India since Mughal rule," made Punjab a central administrative division; its language rose to prominence after the 16th century due to the socio-political situation. In addition to Pakistan's Punjab, the language is also spoken in the the Indian state of Punjab. Its territory stretches from the Hissar-Ambala line in the east to the area between the Ravi and Chenab in the west.

The important dialects include; Majhi which is spoken in the region between the rivers Ravi and Beas, with two major cities Lahore and Amritsar, Poadhi, spoken between the Beas and the Sutlej with the two main towns, Jullunder and Hoshiarpur, Patialwi in Patiala and Sangur; Dogri in Jammu and Kangra, Pahari in Chamb and Mandi, Lailpuri, in Faisalabad, Multani,in Multan, Potohari in the area between the Jhelum and the Indus, with the main town Rawalpindi, Hindko in Hazara, Malwai in Ludhiana, Ferozpur, Kalir, Nabha, MalirKotla and Faridkot (India), Bhatiani in Hissar and Baikanir (India) and Maghribi, spoken in the areas of Gujrat, Sialkot, Gujranwala and the adjacent areas. If this classification is lacking in precision, this is because these dialects have not been studied in detail.

Scholars date the beginning of Punjabi literature to the ninth century A.D., when remnants of the Yoga and Natha sects of Buddhism were active in the Punjab. But its full development had to await the spread of Sikhism in the 16th century, which made Punjabi the language of its scripture, the Adi Granth in 1604. Later Sikhs developed Punjabi into a literary language, written in Gurmukhi and Devanagari scripts, and produced vast amount of literature. An Arabo-Persian script has been used for western Punjabi. Waris Shah, Shah Hussain, and Bulleh Shah are the important representatives literary Punjabi who produced monumental works in verse.


Pushto is spoken in most of Afghanistan. In Pakistan, it is spoken in NWFP, Baluchistan, and border districts of Punjab. A district-wise survey of the Pushto speaking population in provinces would include Hazara, Peshawar, Kohat, Bannu and Dera Ismail Khan in the province of NWFP. In Baluchistan, the Pushto districts include Quetta, Pishin, Loralai, Zhob, and Sibi. It is also spoken in border districts of Punjab such as Attock and Mianwali.

According to an estimate in 1950, the total number of Pushto speakers was nearly 5.35 million, 4.47 million in the NWFP and 270,000 in Baluchistan. Out of the 5.35 million, 4.84 million claimed Pushto as their mother tongue. A later estimate in 1961 put the total Pushto speaking population at 6.8 million. Generally, it is assumed that at least 10 million people in Afghanistan and Pakistan are native speakers of Pushto, which makes it the second most important language of modern Eranian languages. Pushto is written in a Persian-Arabic script but contains letters which are not to be found in either Persian or Arabic languages.

Two dialects of Pushto are recognized, the soft dialect of Afghanistan, which preserves the ancient sh and zh sounds, and the hard dialect of Pakistan, in which rh and gh prevail, and the dialect is referred as Pakhto. The name of the language, properly Paxto, also denotes the strong code of customs, morals and manners of the Pashtun nation.

The earliest poet on record is Mirza Ansari, a grandson of Bayazid, who founded the school of mystic verification which has since monopolized the field of the religious poetry in Afghanistan. The most famous poet is Khushal Khan, the warrior prince of the Khaataks (1613-1691). His Diwan was first published in 1869.


The word Sindhi is an adjective which means "belonging to Sindh." It is used to designate the people and language of Sindh. The name of the language indicates with fair accuracy the locality in which it is spoken. This includes the whole of the modern province of Sindh, Khairpur, the peninsula of Cuth, the southern portion of Lasbela and Kachhi in Balochistan, and the extreme southern portion of Bahawalpur.

According to accepted definitions and scientific classifications, Sindhi belongs to the Indic subgroup of Indo-European languages. More specifically, it is placed in the northwest group of the outer circle of Indo-European or Indo-Aryan vernaculars. It is derived from Prakrit, an early popular dialect of Sanskrit, but it is distinguished in its retention of a number of characteristic features of Prakrit which in other existing Indo-Aryan languages are regularly modified. This conservation is due to the isolated position of Sindh, separated by a great desert from other tracts where cognate tongues are spoken.

The grammatical structure of Sindhi is heterogenous. The noun and branches belong to Sanskrit. Verbs and adverbs are formed from Persian models. The historical age of Sindhi language is not precisely known. However, Arabian travellers such as Al-Istakhari and Al-Maqdisi, who visited Sindh in the 10th century, reported that the languages spoken in Deybal, Mansurah, and Multan were Arabic and Sindhi.


Siraiki is the language of western Punjab. It has been called by various names, including Lahnda, Multani, Uchi and Derewali. However, all these names have now been dropped, and Siraiki has been adopted. Linguistically it is linked with the Indo-Aryan languages, but some recent authors claim that its origin was in pre-Aryan India and trace the influences of dialects of pre-Aryan, Dravidian and Dardic languages on Siraiki.

Siraiki has adopted the Persian script (nastaliq) for its writing, although the script is insufficient for all the sound patterns of the language. As a result, several changes have been made to fit the language to the Persian script. The number of letters in the Siraiki alphabet exceeds that of any other developed language such as Arabic, Persian, English, Urdu or Punjabi. The Siraiki language is spoken in the central part of Pakistan, on either side of Indus, approximately from 280 N to 330 N longitude and including the reaches of Chenab and Sutlej, which correspond to the southwestern part of Punjab and adjacent areas.


Urdu is the official language of Pakistan. The language belongs to the Indo-Aryan subgroup of the Indo-European family.

It is closely related to Hindi, the official language of India. In his Linguistic Survey of India, Grierson has defined Urdu as that form of Hindustani which is written in Persian characters and which makes free use of Persian and Arabic words in its vocabulary. Hindi itself is said to have emerged from the market place and army camps during the period of Islamic invasion and establishment of Muslim rule in the north of India between the eighth and tenth centuries A.D. The speech of the areas around Delhi, known as Khari boli, was adopted by the Afghans, Persian and Turks as a common language of interaction with the local population. With the passage of time it developed a variety called Urdu (from the Turkish word urdu, or camp). This variety naturally had a preponderance of borrowing from Arabic and Persian, but remained relatively free from large-scale borrowing from these foreign languages. In time Urdu gained prestige and patronage at Muslim courts and developed into a literary language. Urdu has been used as a literary language since the twelfth century.

Its cultivation began in the Deccan at the end of the sixteenth century with the Wali of Aurangabad, commonly called the ?father of Rekhta or Urdu?, Sauda and Mir Taqi Mir. Another school, almost equally celebrated, arose at Lucknow, during the troubled times in Delhi in the middle of the eighteenth century. In Delhi in the nineteenth century, Ghalib and Zauq produced monumental works in Urdu poetry. Urdu prose came into existence as a literary medium at the beginning of the last century in Calcutta under the influence of the English. The Bagho Bahar of Mir Amman and the Khirad Afroz of Hafiz ud din Ahmad are among these earlier works. Urdu prose prospered, and literature poured from the press in the last century. Muhammad Hussain Azad and Pandit Ratan Nath (Sarshar) are among the most eminent writers of Urdu prose. In a later era, Maulana Azad and Altaf Hussain Hali introduced new themes and fresh styles, and the sphere of Urdu poetry widened. During the struggle for Pakistan, Muhammad Iqbal and Hafeez Jalandhari excelled in poetry and cultivated refined themes in Urdu literature. After independence, Urdu literature flourished under state patronage, when Urdu was declared the official language of Pakistan. Manto, Faiz, Qasmi, and many others developed matchless poetry and prose.

It should be noted that Urdu is not a communal language, nor is it only a Muslim language. A huge mass of historical research corroborates this point. Urdu is spoken by approximately eight million people in Pakistan as a mother tongue and by 23 million people in India.

Back to top Go down
View user profile

Number of posts : 13
Registration date : 2010-08-07

PostSubject: Re: LANGUAGES SPOKEN IN PAKISTAN   LANGUAGES  SPOKEN  IN  PAKISTAN Icon_minitimeSat Aug 07, 2010 3:00 pm

Our Pakistan's culture is so rich..........our languages are also so interesting....and sweet..

Back to top Go down
View user profile
Back to top 
Page 1 of 1

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
Jump to: