Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Ethnic Groups in Pakistan
Along with the proliferating violence and mass scale bombing, ethnic groups in Pakistan continue to stroke and force down the people of this country. This has not been an issue that erupted a few decades ago, but had always encompassed this land since its birth. After raising the curtains, Ethnicity in Pakistan proves to play a significant role in obliterating the economy and its people. Since the very first human beings placed their steps on earth, people and societies have always become a victim of differentiation and descrimination. Information regarding some of these major groups has been given below:
The province Punjab, also known as the land of five rivers constitutes various ethnic groups. Arabs, Afghani’s, Persians and Turks ruled the land mainly. Even though all these empires gradually disappeared from Punjab, but their culture and language became a part of people’s lives. Punjabi language has different dialects and there are almost 63 dialects of Punjabi are spoken throughout the province of Punjab.
Pushtuns, generally referred to as Pathans, are the natives of West Indus River. They are the second largest ethnic group in Pakistan. Their majority population lives in Karachi and then in Peshawar. Their unique code of conduct is based on tribal structure and referred to as Pushtunwali.
The province Sindh exists along the Indus River and got exposure due to Indus Valley Civilization. Sindhis are the inhabitants of Sindh. The name of the land was inherited from Indus Civilization.
Baluchistan is situated on the South West side of Pakistan. It is the largest province of Pakistan The population of Baluchistan constitutes 6% of Pakistan’s total population. The people belonging to the land are referred to as Baluchis.
The word “Muhajir” means migrating from one place to another. These people are migrants from Central Asia and Middle East. The large majority of these people are Pashtuns; others include Bokras, Memons and Ismailis. The one thing, which unites them, is the Urdu language.
Seraikis speak the language Seraiki and are settled in southern part of Punjab. This is the second largest community in Punjab. It is one of the dialects of Punjabi. There are almost 13.9 million Saraiki people in Pakistan.
Although Pakistan has five provinces, which are Punjab, Sindh, Baluchistan, and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, and Gilgit-Baltistan, each province consists of more than one language and many dialects. Punjabi is the largest speaking language of Pakistan with 44.15% of total population speaking it.
In Sindh, mostly Sindhi is spoken. It’s the second most spoken language after Punjabi. Holy Quran was first translated in Sindhi language, which explains a strong religious factor. The poetry is mostly based on Sufi-ism.
In Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, mostly Pashto is spoken. It is also spoken in Afghanistan. There are other languages also spoken in this region because of different emperors and rulers that stayed in this region for years. These include, Chitrali, Kohistani, and Hindko.
In Baluchistan province, mostly Baluchi is spoken, however in some parts of Baluchistan Pashto is also spoken.
The one factor that unites Pakistan is the Urdu language. It’s a mixture of different languages like Punjabi, Arabic, Farsi and English and other different other languages. 7.57% speak Urdu in Pakistan.
English is the international language and people have adopted the language. The official communication is also done through English. English has taken place of Urdu in govt. offices and departments. In Pakistan 10.97% people speak English.
The ethnic groups in Pakistan contributes to her rich culture. Pakistani society and culture continues to develop as the interaction among these groups rises. Although, diversity contributes to positivity and creativity in a society, conflicts of severe nature have hampered country's economic and socio-political progress. Division among the people on the basis of geographic association, language, religion economic disparities, and subcultures has had adverse effects on the country in all aspects. At this hour, the matter of ethnicity in Pakistan along with education system in Pakistan needs critical attention and the government needs to root out the differences among the people.