Languages of Pakistan

Languages of Pakistan

Encyclopedia
Languages of Pakistan include two official languages: Urdu, which is also Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

's national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 and lingua franca
Lingua franca
A lingua franca is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.-Characteristics:"Lingua franca" is a functionally defined term, independent of the linguistic...

, and English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Additionally, Pakistan has four major provincial languages: Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

, Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

, Farsi(Persian) and Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, as well as three major regional languages: Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, Hindko
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 and Kashmiri
Kashmiri language
Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

.

Most of the languages of Pakistan belong to the Indo-Aryan languages of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

.

Statistics

Rank Language 1998 census 1982 census 1961 census 1951 census
1 Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

44.15% 48.17% 66.39% 67.08%
2 Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

15.42% 13.15% 8.47% 8.16%
3 Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

14.1% 11.7% 12.59% 12.85%
4 Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

*
10.53% 9.54% --  -- 
5 Urdu 7.57% 7.60% 7.57% 7.05%
6 Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

3.57% 3.02% 2.49% 3.04%

  • Seraiki
    Saraiki language
    Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

     was included with Punjabi
    Punjabi language
    Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

     in 1951 and 1961 census


Following are the major languages spoken in Pakistan. The percentage of Pakistanis who are native speakers of that language is also given.
Numbers of speakers of larger languages
Language 2008 estimate 1998 census Areas of Predominance
1 Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

76,367,360 44.17% 58,433,431 44.15% Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

2 Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

26,692,890 15.44% 20,408,621 15.42% Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
3 Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

24,410,910 14.12% 18,661,571 14.10% Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

4 Seraiki 18,019,610 10.42% 13,936,594 10.53% Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

5 Urdu 13,120,540 7.59% 10,019,576 7.57% Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

6 Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

6,204,540 3.59% 4,724,871 3.57% Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...


National language: Urdu


Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

  is the national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 , lingua franca and one of two official languages of Pakistan (the other being English). Although only about 8% of Pakistanis speak it as their first language, it is spoken as a second and often third language by nearly all Pakistanis. Its introduction as the lingua franca
Lingua franca
A lingua franca is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.-Characteristics:"Lingua franca" is a functionally defined term, independent of the linguistic...

 was encouraged by the British
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

 upon the capitulation and annexation of Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 (1843) and Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 (1849) with the subsequent ban on the use of Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

. The decision to make the language change was to institute a universal language throughout the then British Raj
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

 in South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

 as well as minimize the influence of Persia, Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

, Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 and Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

 had on this transitional region. Urdu is a relatively new language in the contemporary sense but has undergone considerable modifications and development borrowing heavily on the traditions of older languages like Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

, Turkish
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

 and local South Asian languages
Languages of South Asia
South Asia is home to several hundred languages. Most languages spoken in India belong either to the Indo-European , the Dravidian , the Austroasiatic , or the Tibeto-Burman South Asia is home to several hundred languages. Most languages spoken in India belong either to the Indo-European (ca....

 all of which can be found in its vocabulary. It began as a standardized register of Hindi and in its spoken form. It is widely used, both formally and informally, for personal letters as well as public literature, in the literary sphere and in the popular media. It is a required subject of study in all primary and secondary schools. It is the first language of most Muhajirs (Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 refugees that fled from genocide
Genocide
Genocide is defined as "the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group", though what constitutes enough of a "part" to qualify as genocide has been subject to much debate by legal scholars...

 and pograms from different parts of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 after independence of Pakistan in 1947) that form nearly 8% of Pakistan's population and is an acquired language. As Pakistan's national language, Urdu has been promoted to promote national unity. It is written with a modified form of the Perso-Arabic alphabet, usually in Nastaliq script, and its basic Hindustani vocabulary has been enriched by words from Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

, Turkic languages
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

 and English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Urdu has drawn inspiration from Persian literature
Persian literature
Persian literature spans two-and-a-half millennia, though much of the pre-Islamic material has been lost. Its sources have been within historical Persia including present-day Iran as well as regions of Central Asia where the Persian language has historically been the national language...

 and has now an enormous stock of words from that language. In recent years, the Urdu spoken in Pakistan has gradually been influenced by many of the native languages including Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 and Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 in terms of intonation, as well as incorporating terminology from those languages. As such the language is constantly developing and has acquired a particularly "Pakistani" flavour to it distinguishing itself from that spoken in ancient times and in India. The first poetry in Urdu was by the Persian poet Amir Khusro
Amir Khusro
Ab'ul Hasan Yamīn ud-Dīn Khusrow , better known as Amīr Khusrow Dehlawī , was an Indian musician, scholar and poet. He was an iconic figure in the cultural history of the Indian subcontinent...

 (1253–1325) and the first Urdu book "Woh Majlis" was written in 1728; the first time the word "Urdu" was used was by Sirajuddin Ali Khan Arzoo in 1741. The Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 Emperor
Emperor
An emperor is a monarch, usually the sovereign ruler of an empire or another type of imperial realm. Empress, the female equivalent, may indicate an emperor's wife or a woman who rules in her own right...

 Aurangzeb Alamgir
Aurangzeb
Abul Muzaffar Muhy-ud-Din Muhammad Aurangzeb Alamgir , more commonly known as Aurangzeb or by his chosen imperial title Alamgir , was the sixth Mughal Emperor of India, whose reign lasted from 1658 until his death in 1707.Badshah Aurangzeb, having ruled most of the Indian subcontinent for nearly...

 (1658-1707) spoke Urdu (or Hindustani
Hindustani language
Hindi-Urdu is an Indo-Aryan language and the lingua franca of North India and Pakistan. It is also known as Hindustani , and historically, as Hindavi or Rekhta...

) fluently as did his descendants while his ancestors mostly spoke Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and Turkish.

Punjabi



Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 (پنجابی) is spoken as a first language by more than 44% of Pakistanis, mostly in Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 as well as by a large number of people in Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

. However, Punjabi does not have any official status in Pakistan. The exact numbers of Punjabi speakers in Pakistan is hard to find since there are many dialects / languages, such as Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, which some regard as part of Punjabi and others regard as separate language. When taking into account Hindko, Potwari, Pahari, Saraiki, Punjabi dialects are thus spoken by almost 60% of the population in Pakistan. The standard Punjabi dialects is from Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Sialkot
Sialkot
Sialkot is a city in Pakistan situated in the north-east of the Punjab province at the foothills of snow-covered peaks of Kashmir near the Chenab river. It is the capital of Sialkot District. The city is about north-west of Lahore and only a few kilometers from Indian-controlled Jammu.The...

, Gujranwala
Gujranwala
Gujranwala is a industrial city in the north-east of the Punjab province. It is the sixth largest city in Pakistan with a population of approximately 2,661,360 as on 24 June 2011...

 and Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura or Shekhupur , formerly Kot Dayal Das or Singhpuria or Virkgarh , is an industrial city in the province of Punjab slightly northwest to Lahore in Pakistan. It is known for its historical places, and is commonly known locally as Qila Shaikhupura, because of the fort in the city,...

 districts of the Pakistani Punjab which was used by Waris Shah
Waris Shah
Waris Shah was a Punjabi Sufi poet, renowned for his contribution to Punjabi literature. He is best-known for his seminal work Heer Ranjha, based on the traditional folk tale of Heer and her lover Ranjha. Heer is considered one of the quintessential works of classical Punjabi literature...

 (1722–1798) in his famous book Heer Ranjha
Heer Ranjha
For 1970 Hindi movie of same name and characters, see Heer Raanjha.Heer Ranjha is one of the four popular tragic romances of the Punjab. The other three are Mirza Sahiba, Sassi Punnun and Sohni Mahiwal. There are several poetic narrations of the story, the most famous being 'Heer' by Waris Shah...

 and is also now days the language of Punjabi literature, film and music; such as Lollywood
Lollywood
Lollywood refers to the Pakistani film industry based in the city of Lahore. The word "Lollywood" was first coined in the summer of 1989 in the now defunct magazine "Glamour" published from Karachi by a gossip columnist Saleem Nasir. The film industry in Lahore started in 1929 with the opening of...

. Other dialects are Multani or Saraiki in the West and South, Pothowari & Hindko in the North, Dogri in the mountain areas and Saraiki in the Sargodha
Sargodha
Sargodha is a city in the Sargodha District of Punjab province, Pakistan.Sargodha is located in the northwest of Pakistan. It is the eleventh largest city of Pakistan and also known as Pakistan's best citrus-producing area. It is an agricultural trade centre with various industries...

 district.

Punjabi is descended from Prakrit
Prakrit
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...

 in the Vedic period (1700 B.C.), Pali
Páli
- External links :* *...

, Old Persian and Apabhramsha
Apabhramsha
Apabhraṃśa is a term used by Sanskrit grammarians since Patañjali to refer to dialects that deviate from the norm of Sanskrit grammar. The term in Sanskrit literally means "corrupt" or "non-grammatical language". It is used as a cover term for the dialects forming the transition between the late...

 in the Ashoka
Ashoka
Ashok Maurya or Ashoka , popularly known as Ashoka the Great, was an Indian emperor of the Maurya Dynasty who ruled almost all of the Indian subcontinent from ca. 269 BC to 232 BC. One of India's greatest emperors, Ashoka reigned over most of present-day India after a number of military conquests...

 period (273 B.C. - 232 B.C.) and Hindvi, Lahori and Multani in the Muslim period (711 A.D. - 1857 A.D.) Punjabi literature was principally spiritual in nature and has had a very rich oral tradition. The Great poetry written by Sufi saints has been the folklore of the Punjab and is still sung with great love in any part of Punjab.

Punjabi dialects include:

Major Punjabi dialects in Pakistan


Majhi
Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect is referred to as the standard dialect of Punjabi language originating from the Majha region of the Punjab...

 or Standard Punjabi
The Majhi dialect is Punjabi's prestige dialect
Prestige dialect
In sociolinguistics, prestige describes the level of respect accorded to a language or dialect as compared to that of other languages or dialects in a speech community. The concept of prestige in sociolinguistics is closely related to that of prestige or class within a society...

 and spoken in the heart of Punjab where most of the Punjabi population lives. The Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect is referred to as the standard dialect of Punjabi language originating from the Majha region of the Punjab...

 is the dialect of the historical region of Majha
Majha
Majha is a region of the Punjab comprising the modern districts of Amritsar, Gurdaspur and Tarn Taran in the Indian State of Punjab and the districts of Narowal, Lahore and Kasur in the Pakistani Province of Punjab. The term previously applied to Panjabis living north of the Sutlej...

, which spans the Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura or Shekhupur , formerly Kot Dayal Das or Singhpuria or Virkgarh , is an industrial city in the province of Punjab slightly northwest to Lahore in Pakistan. It is known for its historical places, and is commonly known locally as Qila Shaikhupura, because of the fort in the city,...

, Kasur
Kasur
Kasur , the capital of Kasur District in Pakistan. Kasur is located adjacent to the border of Ganda Singh Wala between Pakistan and India, and is a tourist attraction because of the daily occurring Flags lowering ceremony...

, Okara
Okara, Pakistan
Okara is the capital city of Okara District in the Punjab province of Pakistan. The name Okara is derived from Okaan, a name of a tree, the city is located south-west to the city of Lahore and is famous for its agriculture-based economy and cotton mills...

, Gujranwala
Gujranwala
Gujranwala is a industrial city in the north-east of the Punjab province. It is the sixth largest city in Pakistan with a population of approximately 2,661,360 as on 24 June 2011...

, Wazirabad
Wazirabad
AYAZ KHANWazirabad is an industrial city located in Gujranwala District, Punjab, Pakistan. Wazirabad is situated on the banks of the Chenab River nearly 100 kilometres north of Lahore on the Grand Trunk Road. It is 45 kilometres from Sialkot, 30 kilometres from the district capital - Gujranwala...

, Sialkot
Sialkot
Sialkot is a city in Pakistan situated in the north-east of the Punjab province at the foothills of snow-covered peaks of Kashmir near the Chenab river. It is the capital of Sialkot District. The city is about north-west of Lahore and only a few kilometers from Indian-controlled Jammu.The...

, Narowal
Narowal
Narowal is a city in the northeast of the Punjab province of Pakistan. The city is the capital of Narowal District and tehsil. It is situated on the banks of Ravi River about 4–5 km from the Indian border.-Etymology:...

, Gujrat
Gujrat
Gujrat is a city in Pakistan. It is the capital of Gujrat District and the Gujrat Tehsil subdivision in the Punjab Province. People living in Gujrat refer to themselves as Gujratis, which sometimes leads to confusion with people from the Indian state of Gujarat which adjoins Pakistan...

 and to some extant in Jhelum
Jhelum
Jhelum or Jehlum may refer to:* Jhelum, a city in Pakistan on the banks of the Jhelum River* Jhelum District, an administrative division in Punjab, Pakistan surrounding the city of Jhelum...

 District of Pakistani Punjab and Amritsar
Amritsar
Amritsar is a city in the northern part of India and is the administrative headquarters of Amritsar district in the state of Punjab, India. The 2001 Indian census reported the population of the city to be over 1,500,000, with that of the entire district numbering 3,695,077...

, Tarn Taran Sahib
Tarn Taran Sahib
Tarn Taran Sahib a city in the Indian state of Punjab. It is the district headquarters and hosts the municipal council of Taran Taran district.-History:Tarn Taran Sahib was founded by the fifth Sikh Guru Shri Guru Arjan Dev Ji...

, and Gurdaspur
Gurdaspur
Gurdaspur is a city in the state of Punjab, situated in the northwest part of the Republic of India. It is located in the center of and is the administrative head of Gurdaspur District. It was the location of a fort which was famous for the siege it sustained in 1712 from the Mughals...

 Districts of the India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

n State of Punjab
Punjab (India)
Punjab ) is a state in the northwest of the Republic of India, forming part of the larger Punjab region. The state is bordered by the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh to the east, Haryana to the south and southeast and Rajasthan to the southwest as well as the Pakistani province of Punjab to the...

.


Jhangochi
Jhangochi (جھنگوچی) dialect is spoken in Pakistani Punjab. Jhangochi or Rachnavi is the oldest and most idiosyncratic dialect of the Punjabi. It is spoken throughout a widespread area, starting from Khanewal and Jhang at both ends of Ravi and Chenab to Gujranwala district. It then runs down to Bahawalnagar and Chishtian areas, on the banks of river Sutlej. This entire area has almost the same traditions, customs and culture. The Jhangochi dialect of Punjabi has several aspects that set it apart from other Punjabi variants. This area has a great culture and heritage, especially literary heritage, as it is credited with the creation of the famous epic romance stories of Heer Ranjha and Mirza Sahiba. It is spoken in the Bar areas of Punjab, i.e., areas whose names are often suffixed with 'Bar', for example Sandal Bar, Kirana Bar, Neeli Bar, Ganji Bar and also from Khanewal to Jhang includes Faisalabad and Chiniot.


Shahpuri
The Shahpuri dialect is mainly spoken in Pakistani Punjab. This dialect has been spoken by the people of District Sargodha including Dera Chanpeer Shah, Khushab, Jhang, Mianwali, Attock, parts of Faisalabad (formerly Lyallpur), parts of Dera Ismail Khan, Dera Ghazi Khan, Bahawalnagar, Chakwal, Mianwali, Sargodha, Khushab and Mandi Bahauddin districts.


Pothowari
This dialect is spoken in northern Pakistani Punjab. mainly The area where Pothowari
Pothohari language
Potwari , also known as Potohari ), is a rich north Indian sub-continent dialect spoken in the Pothohar Plateau around Rawalpindi, Kahuta, Gujar Khan, Jehlum, up to Gujrat in the south and Chakwal in the West, Hazara in the north, Azad Kashmir in the east and also by Sikhs from the Pothohar...

 is spoken extends in the north from Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad is the capital of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan. It is located in Muzaffarabad District on the banks of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers...

 to as far south as Jhelum
Jhelum
Jhelum or Jehlum may refer to:* Jhelum, a city in Pakistan on the banks of the Jhelum River* Jhelum District, an administrative division in Punjab, Pakistan surrounding the city of Jhelum...

, Gujar Khan
Gujar Khan
Gujar Khan is a city in Rawalpindi District, Punjab, Pakistan. It is the headquarters of Gujar Khan Tehsil, the largest tehsil of Punjab. It is approximately 55 kilometres southeast of Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan and 220 km to the north west of Lahore, capital of Punjab...

 and Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi , locally known as Pindi, is a city in the Pothohar region of Pakistan near Pakistan's capital city of Islamabad, in the province of Punjab. Rawalpindi is the fourth largest city in Pakistan after Karachi, Lahore and Faisalabad...

. [phr] 49,440 (2000 WCD). Murree Hills north of Rawalpindi, and east to Bhimber
Bhimber
Bhimber is the chief town of Bhimber District, Azad Kashmir. The town is situated on the border between Azad Kashmir and Pakistan at a distance of about 50 km from Mirpur, about 48 km from Gujrat and about 166 km from Islamabad.-History:...

. Poonchi is east of Rawalakot
Rawalakot
Rawalakot , is a city in Azad Kashmir, and is the capital of Poonch Division and Poonch District. It is in a saucer-shaped valley at an elevation of 1,615 metres ....

. Potwari is in the plains around Rawalpindi. Alternate names: Potwari, Pothohari, Potohari, Chibhali, Dhundi-Kairali. Dialects: Pahari (Dhundi-Kairali), Pothwari (Potwari), Chibhali, Punchhi (Poonchi), Jhelumi, Mirpuri. Pahari means 'hill language' referring to a string of divergent dialects, some of which may be separate languages. A dialect chain with Panjabi and Hindko. Closeness to western Pahari is unknown. Lexical similarity 76% to 83% among varieties called 'Pahari', 'Potwari', and some called 'Hindko' in Mansehra
Mansehra
Mansehra city is located at in Mansehra District, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is very near to Abbottabad city. It is a major stop for tourists on the Karakoram Highway which leads to China...

, Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad is the capital of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan. It is located in Muzaffarabad District on the banks of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers...

, and Jammun. Classification: Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Northern zone, Western Pahari.


Hindko
Classified under Lahnda languages
Lahnda languages
The Lahnda or Western Punjabi Languages are an Indo-Aryan languages dialect continuum that are Mutually intelligible and are spoken in South Asia.According to the Ethnologue they include:...

 by many linguists; perhaps differs from Punjabi. Hindko dialect is spoken in north west Pakistani Punjab and North-West Frontier Province
North-West Frontier Province
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa , formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province and various other names, is one of the four provinces of Pakistan, located in the north-west of the country...

 mainly this dialect is spoken in districts of Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Attock
Attock
Attock is a city located in the northern border of the Punjab province of Pakistan and the headquarters of Attock District...

, Nowshehra
Nowshehra
Nowshehra or Naushera is a town and a notified area committee in Rajauri district in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.-Geography:Nowshehra is located at . It has an average elevation of 1,575 metres .-Demographics:...

, Mansehra
Mansehra
Mansehra city is located at in Mansehra District, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is very near to Abbottabad city. It is a major stop for tourists on the Karakoram Highway which leads to China...

, Balakot
Balakot
Balakot , is a town in Mansehra District in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. The town was destroyed during the 2005 earthquake and later rebuilt with the assistance of the Government of Pakistan and Saudi Public Assistance for Pakistan Earthquake Victims , a Saudi relief organization...

, Abbottabad
Abbottabad
Abbottabad is a city located in the Hazara region of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in Pakistan. The city is situated in the Orash Valley, northeast of the capital Islamabad and east of Peshawar at an altitude of and is the capital of the Abbottabad District...

 and Murree
Murree
Murree city is a popular hill station and a summer resort, especially for the residents of Rawalpindi/Islamabad, and for the cities of the province of Punjab, Pakistan...

 and the lower half of Neelum District
Neelum District
Neelum District is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. Until recently it was part of Muzaffarabad District. It is bound by the Gilgit to the North, with Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipore Districts of Indian-administered Kashmir in India to the South and Southeast,...

 and Muzafarabad.


Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

Saraiki or Multani (also Lehndi by some) is spoken in Pakistani Punjab.It perhaps differ more than any other dialect of Punjabi. It becomes more and more different as you move down south, as the influence of Sindhi increases. Saraiki itself is Sindhi word and means northern.It is now considered as separate language, instead of merely a dialect of Punjabi.It is mostly spoken in southern and western districts of Punjab,which comprises Multan, Lodhran, Bahawalpur, Mianwali, Bhakkar, Layyah, Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffargarh, Rahim Yar Khan, southern and western parts of Khanewal, southern parts of Bahawalnagar and western parts of Khushab districts. It is also spoken by majority of population of Dera Ismail Khan district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (خیبر پښتونخوا) province, kachi plain of Balochistan, northern parts of Sindh, and cities of Hyderabad and Karachi.


Dhani
The people of Pothohar speak Pothohari dialect. However, the people of Chakwal or the Dhanni area in particular do not speak Pothohari and are ethnologically not regarded as Potoharis. They speak a distinctive Chakwali or Dhanni dialect of Punjabi, which is closer to Shahpuri, a dialect spoken in the Shahpur-Salt Range area and also has a slight element of Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

 and Pothohari.

Pashto


Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 (پشتو) Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 is spoken as a first language by 15.5% (28-30 millions) of Pakistanis, mostly in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and in Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 as well as by immigrants to the eastern provinces who are often not counted due to census irregularities. The Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 has rich written literary traditions as well as an oral tradition. There are two major dialect patterns within which the various individual dialects may be classified; these are Pakhto, which is the Northern (Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

) variety, and the softer Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 spoken in the southern areas. Khushal Khan Khattak
Khushal Khan Khattak
Khushal Khan Khattak was a prominent Pashtun malik, poet, warrior,A charismatic personality and tribal chief of the Khattak tribe. He wrote a huge collection of Pashto poems during the Mughal Empire in the 17th century, and admonished Pashtuns to forsake their divisive tendencies and unite...

 (1613–1689) and Rahman Baba
Rahman Baba
Abdul Rahman Baba is popularly known as Rahman Baba , was a Pashtun Muslim poet from Peshawar in modern-day Pakistan who remains the most popular poet among the Pashtuns...

 (1633–1708) were the most famous poets in the Pashto language. In the last part of 20th century, Pakhto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 or Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 has produced some great poets like Ghani Khan
Ghani Khan
Ghani Khan is widely considered as one of the best Pashto language poets of the 20th century, along with Ameer Hamza Shinwari. He stands on a par with Khushal Khan Khattak and Rahman Baba. He was also a respected writer and artist...

, Khatir Afridi
Khatir Afridi
Khatir Afridi was born as Misree Khan in 1929, at Landi Kotal, Federally Administered Tribal Areas, Pakistan near the border of Afghanistan, and died on August 24, 1961. Misree Khan was born to Afridi parents of the Zakka Khel clan. He was a prominent poet of the Pashto language but died young...

 and Amir Hamza Shinwari. There are also many Pakistanis from the adjacent regions of Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

, Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 and Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 who are conversant in Pashto and count it as their second language. They are not included in the overall percentage. Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

 is the biggest Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 speaking city in the world although the Pashto speakers constitute only about 20% of Karachi's population.

Sindhi



Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 (سنڌي) is spoken as a first language by 15.5% of Pakistanis, mostly in Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

. It has a rich literature and is used in schools. It is an Indo-Aryan
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

 (Indo-European
Indo-European
Indo-European may refer to:* Indo-European languages** Aryan race, a 19th century and early 20th century term for those peoples who are the native speakers of Indo-European languages...

) language, derived from Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

, and Arabic languages
Arabic languages
The Arabic language family consists of*Classical Arabic and its descendants, including** Modern Standard Arabic and colloquial varieties of Arabic **The various Judeo-Arabic languages **Maltese...

. The Arabs ruled Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 for more than 150 years after Muhammad bin Qasim
Muhammad bin Qasim
Muhammad bin Qasim Al-Thaqafi was a Umayyad general who, at the age of 17, began the conquest of the Sindh and Punjab regions along the Indus River for the Umayyad Caliphate. He was born in the city of Taif...

 conquered it in 712 AD, remaining there for three years to set up Arab rule. Consequently, the social fabric of Sindh contains elements of Arabic society. Sindhi is spoken by over 36 million people in Pakistan, and is the official language of Sindh province. It is widely spoken in the Lasbela District
Lasbela District
Lasbela is a coastal district of Balochistan province of Pakistan. It became a separate district in Kalat Division on 30 June 1954. The name is derived from the words Las which in Sanskrit signifies a settlement or lived in or lively and Bela which means "A Sea's Shore" in Sanskrit and is also the...

 of Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 (where the Lasi
Lasi
Lasi is a tribe settled in Lasbela District of Balochistan, Pakistan....

 tribe speaks a dialect of Sindhi), many areas of the Naseerabad
Nasirabad District
Nasirabad is a district in the centre-west of Balochistan, Pakistan. Nasirabad’s headquarters are at Dera Murad Jamali. The district was notified in 1974. For three years, from July 1987 to December 1990, it was known as Tamboo district. Tamboo is a small village 40 km west of Dera Murad...

 and Jafarabad
Jafarabad District
Jafarabad or Jaffarabad district lies in the South-East of the Pakistani province of Balochistan. Jafarabad’s headquarters are at Dera Allah Yar. Formerly known as the Jhatpat subdivision, the region was part of the Jacobabad District until 1970 and part of the Sibi District until 1975...

 districts of Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

, and by the Sindhi diaspora abroad. Sindhi language has six major dialects
Dialect
The term dialect is used in two distinct ways, even by linguists. One usage refers to a variety of a language that is a characteristic of a particular group of the language's speakers. The term is applied most often to regional speech patterns, but a dialect may also be defined by other factors,...

: Sireli, Vicholi, Lari, Thari, Lasi and Kachhi. It is written in the Arabic script with several additional letters to accommodate special sounds. The largest Sindhi-speaking cities are Karachi, Hyderabad
Hyderabad, Sindh
is the second largest city in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is the seventh largest city in the country. The city was founded in 1768 by Mian Ghulam Shah Kalhoro upon the ruins of a Mauryan fishing village along the bank of the Indus known as Neroon Kot...

, Sukkur
Sukkur
Sukkur, or Sakharu , formerly Aror and Bakar, is the third largest city of Sindh province, situated on the west bank of Indus River in Pakistan in Sukkur District. However, the word Sakharu in Sindhi means "superior", which the spelling of the city's name in Sindhi suggests is the origin of the...

, Shikarpur, Dadu, Jacobabad
Jacobabad
Jacobabad or Yaqubabad is the capital city of Jacobabad District, Sindh, Pakistan. The city is also the administrative centre of Jacobabad Taluka, an administrative subdivision of the district, the city is subdivided into 8 Union Councils...

, Larkana
Larkana
Larkana or Larkano is the fourth largest city in the north-western part of Sindh Province, Pakistan, and is located within Larkana District.The old name of larkano is chandka which was changed in 1901. In August 2000 Larkana celebrated its hundred years of existence...

 and Nawabshah
Nawabshah
Nawabshah , or Shaheed Benazirabad, is a district in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is headquarter of Shaheed Benazir Abad District...

. Sindhi literature
Sindhi literature
Sindhi literature is very rich and is generally considered to be among the world's oldest. Its writers have contributed extensively in various forms of literature both in poetry and prose.- Sufi literature and poetry :...

 is also spiritual in nature. Shah Abdul Latif Bhita'i (1689–1752) is one of its greatest poets, and wrote Sassi Punnun
Sassi Punnun
Sassi Punnun ; is one of the seven popular tragic romances from Sindh and Baluchistan. The other six are Umar Marui, Sohni Mehar, Lila Chanesar, Noori Jam Tamachi, Momal Rano and Dhaj, Ror Kumar commonly known as Seven Queens of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai...

 and Umar Marvi
Umar Marvi
Umar Marvi or Marui is a Sindh love story that appears in Shah Jo Risalo. It is a love story set in Sindh, Pakistan. Umar Marui is included in seven popular tragic romances from Sindh and Baluchistan...

, folk stories, in his famous book "Shah Jo Risalo
Shah Jo Risalo
Shah Jo Risalo is the name of the compiled verses of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai. Many scholars and linguists have published Shah Jo Risalo with their own compilations, hence many editions are available...

".

Sindhi Dialects:
  • Sindhi Siraiki - a version of siraiki regarded as a dialect of Sindhi
    Sindhi language
    Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

    ; spoken mainly in Upper Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

    .
  • Vicholi - in Vicholo, i.e. Central Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

    .
  • Lari - in Laru, i.e. Lower Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

  • Lasi - in Lasa B’elo, a part of Kohistan in Baluchistan on the western side of Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

  • Thari or Thareli - in Tharu, the desert region on the southeast border of Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

     and a part of the Jaisalmer
    Jaisalmer
    Jaysalmer , nicknamed "The Golden City", is a town in the Indian state of Rajasthan. It is located west from the state capital Jaipur. It was once known as Jaisalmer state. The town stands on a ridge of yellowish sandstone, crowned by a fort, which contains the palace and several ornate Jain...

     district in Rajasthan
    Rajasthan
    Rājasthān the land of Rajasthanis, , is the largest state of the Republic of India by area. It is located in the northwest of India. It encompasses most of the area of the large, inhospitable Great Indian Desert , which has an edge paralleling the Sutlej-Indus river valley along its border with...

  • Kachhi - in the Kutch region and in a part of Kathiawar in Gujarat, on the southern side of Sindh


Vicholi is considered as the standard dialect by all Sindhi speakers.

Balochi


Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 (بلوچی) is spoken as a first language by about 4% of Pakistanis, mostly in Balochistan province. It is believed that the language was brought to its present location in a series of migrations from the Kurdistan region of northeastern Iraq
Iraq
Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

 and northwestern Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

. Rakshani is the major dialect group in terms of numbers. Sarhaddi is a sub-dialect of Rakshani. Other sub-dialects are Kalati (Qalati), Chagai-Kharani and Panjguri. Eastern Hill Balochi or Northern Balochi is very different from the rest. Balochi language is very close to the Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 itself. The name Balochi or Baluchi is not found before the 10th Century. Rakshani is the major dialect group in terms of numbers. Sarhaddi, is a sub dialect of Rakshani. Other sub - dialects are Qalati, Chagai Kharani, and Makrani
Makrani
Makrani are the inhabitants of Makran coast of Balochistan in Iran and Pakistan.-Sheedi:Black Africans were enslaved and brought to Balochistan in medieval times. The descendants are called Makrani or Sheedi. The Sheedis are a Negroid people in Pakistan...

. The Eastern Hill Balochi or Northern Balochi are distinct dialects. The Kethran language in North East Balochistan is also a variant of Balochi. It is one of the 9 distinguished languages of Pakistan. Since Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 is a very poetic and rich language and have a certain degree of affinity to Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and Urdu, Balochi poets tend to be very good poets in Urdu as well and Ata Shaad, Gul Khan Nasir and Noon Meem Danish
Noon Meem Danish
Noor Mohammed Danish is a Pakistani poet of African and Baloch descent. He is more commonly known as Noon Meem Danish or N. M. Danish.-Early life and education:...

 are excellent examples of this.

Saraiki


Saraiki or Multani (also Lehndi by some) is spoken in Pakistani Punjab.It perhaps differ more than any other dialect of Punjabi. It becomes more and more different as you move down south, as the influence of Sindhi increases. Saraiki itself is Sindhi word and means northern.It is now considered as a separate language, instead of merely a dialect of Punjabi.It is mostly spoken in southern and western districts of Punjab,which comprises Multan, Lodhran, Bahawalpur, Mianwali, Bhakkar, Layyah, Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffargarh, Rahim Yar Khan, southern and western parts of Khanewal,southern parts of Bahawalnagar and western parts of Khushab districts. It is also spoken by majority of population of Dera Ismail Khan district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (خیبر پښتونخوا) province, kachi plain of Balochistan, northern parts of Sindh, and cities of Hyderabad and Karachi.

Hindko


Hindko language
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 (ہندکو) is known as the "language of the mountains" and is one of the oldest languages in Pakistan. It is spoken in many dialects in the districts of Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Kohat, Nowshera, Swabi, Haripur, Abbottabad, Mansehra, Attock
Attock
Attock is a city located in the northern border of the Punjab province of Pakistan and the headquarters of Attock District...

, and Murree
Murree
Murree city is a popular hill station and a summer resort, especially for the residents of Rawalpindi/Islamabad, and for the cities of the province of Punjab, Pakistan...

, the lower half of Neelum District
Neelum District
Neelum District is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. Until recently it was part of Muzaffarabad District. It is bound by the Gilgit to the North, with Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipore Districts of Indian-administered Kashmir in India to the South and Southeast,...

 and Muzafarabad District of Kashmir. Hindko
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 is an ancient Indo-Aryan language spoken by Hindkowans
Hindkowans
Hindkowans or known locally as "Chachi's" are an Indo-Aryan ethno-linguistic group native to the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab provinces of Pakistan...

 in Pakistan. It is very similar to northern dialects of Punjabi. The language is spoken in the areas of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (including Hazara), local people of Peshawar Punjab and Azad Kashmir
Azad Kashmir
Azad Jammu and Kashmir or Azad Kashmir for short, is the southernmost political entity within the Pakistani-administered part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir...

 by an estimated 2.2 to 4 million people. During the pre-Buddhist era in present day Pakistan, the language of the masses was refined by the ancient grammarian Pāṇini, who set the rules of a structurally rigorous language called Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

 which was used principally for scriptures (analogous to Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 in the Western world). Meanwhile, the vernacular language of the masses, Prakrit
Prakrit
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...

 developed into many tongues and dialects which spread over the northern parts of South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. Hindko is believed to be closely related to Prakrit. Due to the geographic isolation of the regions, it has undergone very little grammatical corruption, but has borrowed considerable vocabulary from its neighbours, in particular Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

. It shows close affinity to Punjabi and the Lahnda sub-group of Indo-Aryan tongues and can be sub-divided into a northern and southern dialects.

Kashmiri


Kashmiri
Kashmiri language
Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

 (كأشُر) is an ancient Dardic language spoken in Azad Kashmir
Azad Kashmir
Azad Jammu and Kashmir or Azad Kashmir for short, is the southernmost political entity within the Pakistani-administered part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir...

, Gilgit-Baltistan and Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 provinces of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

. There are over 2 million Kashmiri speakers in Pakistan. Most of the Kashmiris
Kashmiri people
The Kashmiri people are a Dardic linguistic group living in Kashmir Valley in Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir and parts of the Pakistani territory of Azad Kashmir who speak the Kashmiri language...

 in Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 province and Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

 are refugees and their descendents who fled Indian invasion and occupation of Kashmir
Kashmir
Kashmir is the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term Kashmir geographically denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range...

 in 1948.

In 1919 George Abraham Grierson
George Abraham Grierson
Sir George Abraham Grierson OM KCIE was born to a prominent Dublin family in 1851. His father and grandfather, both also named George, were well-known printers and publishers.-Biography:Educated at St...

 wrote that “Kashmiri is the only one of the Dardic languages
Dardic languages
The Dardic languages are a sub-group of the Indo-Aryan languages spoken in northern Pakistan, eastern Afghanistan, and the Indian region of Jammu and Kashmir...

 that has a literature”. Kashmiri literature dates back to over 750 years, this is, more-or-less, the age of many a modern literature including modern English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Kashmiri retains several features of Old Indo-Aryan that have been lost in other Modern Indo-Aryan languages such as Urdu, Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 and Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

.

Brahui


Brahui (براہوی) is of Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 origin despite the fact that a reasonable amount of the language shares lexical similarities to Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 as well as Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 and Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 due to influence of neighboring languages. Though, Brahui has been influenced by these languages, a majority of the literature contains pure Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 words that relate to the languages of South India
South India
South India is the area encompassing India's states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu as well as the union territories of Lakshadweep and Pondicherry, occupying 19.31% of India's area...

. Spoken in southern Pakistan, it may have evolved from the original languages of Indus valley civilizations
Indus Valley Civilization
The Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilization that was located in the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent, consisting of what is now mainly modern-day Pakistan and northwest India...

 at Mehrgarh
Mehrgarh
Mehrgarh , one of the most important Neolithic sites in archaeology, lies on the "Kachi plain" of Balochistan, Pakistan...

, suggesting that the Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 languages were more widespread. It is spoken in central and east central Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

. The Mengal
Mengal
Mengal is a Brahui / Baloch tribe in Balochistan, Pakistan- Demographics :The Mengal tribe is one of the largest Baloch tribe. Mengal people speak Brahui, a Dravidian language that has been heavily influenced by other Iranian languages spoken in the area, especially Balochi...

s are a famous Brahvi tribe. Around 1-1.5% of Pakistani population has Brahui as their first language. It is one of the nine distinguished languages of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

.

The Brahui
Brahui people
The Brahui or Brohi are ethnic Baloch group of about 2.2 million people with the majority found in Kalat, Baluchistan, Pakistan, but they are also found in smaller numbers in neighboring Afghanistan and Iran. The Brahuis are almost entirely Sunni Muslims.-Origins:The ethnonym "Brahui" is a very...

 population of Balochistan
Balochistan (region)
Balochistan or Baluchistan is an arid, mountainous region in the Iranian plateau in Southwest Asia; it includes part of southeastern Iran, western Pakistan, and southwestern Afghanistan. The area is named after the numerous Baloch tribes, Iranian peoples who moved into the area from the west...

 has been taken by some as the linguistic equivalent of a relict
Relict
A relict is a surviving remnant of a natural phenomenon.* In biology a relict is an organism that at an earlier time was abundant in a large area but now occurs at only one or a few small areas....

 population
Population
A population is all the organisms that both belong to the same group or species and live in the same geographical area. The area that is used to define a sexual population is such that inter-breeding is possible between any pair within the area and more probable than cross-breeding with individuals...

, perhaps indicating that Dravidian languages
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

  were formerly much more widespread and were supplanted by the incoming Indo-Aryan languages
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

. According to J. H. Elfenbein, Brahui could have migrated to Balochistan from central India after 1000 CE. He cites the absence of any Avestan
Avestan language
Avestan is an East Iranian language known only from its use as the language of Zoroastrian scripture, i.e. the Avesta, from which it derives its name...

, an older Iranian language, loanwords in Brahui to supports this hypothesis. The main Iranian contributor to Brahui vocabulary, Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, is a western Iranian language like Kurdish, and moved to the area from the west only around 1000 CE.

Shina


Shina
Shina language
Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

 (شینا) (also known as Tshina) is a Dardic language
Dardic languages
The Dardic languages are a sub-group of the Indo-Aryan languages spoken in northern Pakistan, eastern Afghanistan, and the Indian region of Jammu and Kashmir...

 spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 and Dras
Dras
Dras is a town in the Kargil District of Jammu and Kashmir, India. It is often called 'The Gateway to Ladakh'. The town shot into prominence in the summer of 1999 following Pakistani-backed incursions into Jammu and Kashmir...

 in Ladakh
Ladakh
Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

 of regions of Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore
Astore Valley
Astore Valley is now located in Astore District in the autonomous Pakistani regions of Gilgit-Baltistan,previously in the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir. The valley, adjoining the eastern side of mountain Nanga Parbat, is about long, having area of .The entrance of the valley is located...

, Chilas
Chilas
Chilas is a small town located in the Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan on the left side of river Indus. It is part of the Silk Road connected by the Karakoram Highway which links it to Islamabad in the south via Dassu, Besham, Mansehra, Abbottabad and Haripur...

, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit
Gilgit
Gilgit is a city in northern PakistanGilgit may refer to other terms related with the area of the city:* Gilgit River* Gilgit Valley* Gilgit District* Gilgit Agency * Gilgit Airport...

, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan
Baltistan
Baltistan , also known as بلتیول བལིུལ་ in the Balti language, is a region in northern Pakistan which forms Gilgit-Baltistan, bordering the Xinjiang Autonomous Region of China. In addition, a part of Baltistan also falls into Jammu and Kashmir of India. It is situated in the Karakoram mountains...

 and Kohistan. It is also spoken in Gurez
Gurez
Gurez or Gurais, also pronounced Gorai in the local Shina language, is a valley located in the high Himalayas , about from Bandipore and from Srinagar in northern Jammu and Kashmir, India. At about above sea level, the valley is surrounded by snow capped mountains. It has diverse fauna and...

, Drass, Kargil
Kargil District
Kargil is a district of Ladakh, Kashmir, India. Kargil lies near the Line of Control facing Pakistan-occupied Kashmir's Baltistan to the west, and Kashmir valley to the south. Zanskar is part of Kargil district along with Suru, Wakha and Dras valleys...

, Karkit Badgam and Ladakh
Ladakh
Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

 valleys of Kashmir. There were 321,000 speakers of Gilgiti Shina as of 1981, and an estimated total of speakers of all dialects of 550,000. Many Shina speakers are also found in Pakistan's major urban centres of Islamabad
Islamabad
Islamabad is the capital of Pakistan and the tenth largest city in the country. Located within the Islamabad Capital Territory , the population of the city has grown from 100,000 in 1951 to 1.7 million in 2011...

, Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi , locally known as Pindi, is a city in the Pothohar region of Pakistan near Pakistan's capital city of Islamabad, in the province of Punjab. Rawalpindi is the fourth largest city in Pakistan after Karachi, Lahore and Faisalabad...

, Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Abbottabad
Abbottabad
Abbottabad is a city located in the Hazara region of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in Pakistan. The city is situated in the Orash Valley, northeast of the capital Islamabad and east of Peshawar at an altitude of and is the capital of the Abbottabad District...

, Hyderabad
Hyderabad, Sindh
is the second largest city in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is the seventh largest city in the country. The city was founded in 1768 by Mian Ghulam Shah Kalhoro upon the ruins of a Mauryan fishing village along the bank of the Indus known as Neroon Kot...

 and Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

.

Persian (cultural language)


Preferred language amongst the educated Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 elite, and was the official and cultural language of the Mughal Empire
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 and other Turkic Empires and various Muslim princely states based in what is now Pakistan. Persian was officially abolished from the region with the arrival of the British to the province of Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 in 1843 and Punjab
Punjab region
The Punjab , also spelled Panjab |water]]s"), is a geographical region straddling the border between Pakistan and India which includes Punjab province in Pakistan and the states of the Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Chandigarh and some northern parts of the National Capital Territory of Delhi...

 in 1849 to minimize the influence of Persia and Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 on the regions that now make up Pakistan and integrate these regions with the rest of South Asia under a common Urdu language. It is still spoken and understood by the educated elite as a literary and prestigious language.

Many Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 speaking refugees, Dari
Dari (Persian)
Dari or Fārsī-ye Darī in historical terms refers to the Persian court language of the Sassanids. In contemporary usage, the term refers to the dialects of modern Persian language spoken in Afghanistan, and hence known as Afghan Persian in some Western sources. It is the term officially recognized...

 and Tajiks, from Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently. There are also Tajiks refugees from Tajikistan
Tajikistan
Tajikistan , officially the Republic of Tajikistan , is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia. Afghanistan borders it to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east....

 that have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

.

Arabic (religious language)


Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 (عربي) is considered to be religious language of Muslims. The Quran, Sunnah
Sunnah
The word literally means a clear, well trodden, busy and plain surfaced road. In the discussion of the sources of religion, Sunnah denotes the practice of Prophet Muhammad that he taught and practically instituted as a teacher of the sharī‘ah and the best exemplar...

, Hadith
Hadith
The term Hadīth is used to denote a saying or an act or tacit approval or criticism ascribed either validly or invalidly to the Islamic prophet Muhammad....

 and Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 theology is taught in Arabic with Urdu translation. The large numbers of Pakistanis living in the Persian Gulf
Persian Gulf
The Persian Gulf, in Southwest Asia, is an extension of the Indian Ocean located between Iran and the Arabian Peninsula.The Persian Gulf was the focus of the 1980–1988 Iran-Iraq War, in which each side attacked the other's oil tankers...

 region and in other Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

ern countries has further increased the number of people who can speak Arabic in Pakistan. Arabic is taught as a religious language in mosque
Mosque
A mosque is a place of worship for followers of Islam. The word is likely to have entered the English language through French , from Portuguese , from Spanish , and from Berber , ultimately originating in — . The Arabic word masjid literally means a place of prostration...

s, school
School
A school is an institution designed for the teaching of students under the direction of teachers. Most countries have systems of formal education, which is commonly compulsory. In these systems, students progress through a series of schools...

s, college
College
A college is an educational institution or a constituent part of an educational institution. Usage varies in English-speaking nations...

s, universities
University
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

 and madrassahs
Madrasah
Madrasah is the Arabic word for any type of educational institution, whether secular or religious...

. Nearly all of Pakistan's Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 population has had some form of education in the reading, writing and pronunciation of the Arabic language
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

.

Many Arabs who took part in Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 war have now settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently with their families. Millions of Pakistanis that have worked in Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

 also speak Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

.

Turkic languages (cultural language)


Turkic (ترک) languages were used by the ruling Turco-Mongols
Turkic peoples
The Turkic peoples are peoples residing in northern, central and western Asia, southern Siberia and northwestern China and parts of eastern Europe. They speak languages belonging to the Turkic language family. They share, to varying degrees, certain cultural traits and historical backgrounds...

 (or Mughals
Mughal (tribe)
The term Mughal is simply a Turkic word and many groups in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh use the term Mughal to describe themselves...

) and earlier Sultans
Delhi Sultanate
The Delhi Sultanate is a term used to cover five short-lived, Delhi based kingdoms or sultanates, of Turkic origin in medieval India. The sultanates ruled from Delhi between 1206 and 1526, when the last was replaced by the Mughal dynasty...

 of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 many of whom have settled in Pakistan. There are pockets of Turkic speakers found throughout the country, notably in the valleys in the countries northern regions which lie adjacent to Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

, western Pakistani region of Waziristan
Waziristan
Waziristan is a mountainous region near the Northwest of Pakistan, bordering Afghanistan and covering some 11,585 km² . The area is entirely populated by ethnic Pashtuns . The language spoken in the valley is Pashto/Pakhto...

 principally around Kanigoram where the Burki tribe
Burki
The Burki are a Pushtun tribe of South Waziristan, Pakistan, whose homeland is Kaniguram...

 dwells and in Pakistan's urban centres of Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

, Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

 and Islamabad
Islamabad
Islamabad is the capital of Pakistan and the tenth largest city in the country. Located within the Islamabad Capital Territory , the population of the city has grown from 100,000 in 1951 to 1.7 million in 2011...

. The autobiography of Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Babur
Babur
Babur was a Muslim conqueror from Central Asia who, following a series of setbacks, finally succeeded in laying the basis for the Mughal dynasty of South Asia. He was a direct descendant of Timur through his father, and a descendant also of Genghis Khan through his mother...

, Tuzk Babari
Baburnama
Bāburnāma is the name given to the memoirs of Ẓahīr ud-Dīn Muḥammad Bābur , founder of the Mughal Empire and a great-great-great-grandson of Timur...

 was also written in Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

. After returning from exile in Safavid
Safavid dynasty
The Safavid dynasty was one of the most significant ruling dynasties of Iran. They ruled one of the greatest Persian empires since the Muslim conquest of Persia and established the Twelver school of Shi'a Islam as the official religion of their empire, marking one of the most important turning...

 Persia in 1555, Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Humayun
Humayun
Nasir ud-din Muhammad Humayun was the second Mughal Emperor who ruled present day Afghanistan, Pakistan, and parts of northern India from 1530–1540 and again from 1555–1556. Like his father, Babur, he lost his kingdom early, but with Persian aid, he eventually regained an even larger one...

 introduced Persian language
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and culture in court and government. The Chaghatai language, in which Babur had written his memoirs, disappeared almost entirely from the culture of the courtly elite, and Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Akbar could not speak it. Later in life, Humayun himself is said to have spoken in Persian verse more often than not.

Many Turkic speaking refugees, Uzbeks and Turkmens
Turkmen people
The Turkmen are a Turkic people located primarily in the Central Asian states of Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, and northeastern Iran. They speak the Turkmen language, which is classified as a part of the Western Oghuz branch of the Turkic languages family together with Turkish, Azerbaijani, Qashqai,...

, from Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently. They are also Uzbeks and Turkmen refugees that have moved from Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan , officially the Republic of Uzbekistan is a doubly landlocked country in Central Asia and one of the six independent Turkic states. It shares borders with Kazakhstan to the west and to the north, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan to the east, and Afghanistan and Turkmenistan to the south....

 and Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan , formerly also known as Turkmenia is one of the Turkic states in Central Asia. Until 1991, it was a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic . Turkmenistan is one of the six independent Turkic states...

 and settled in Pakistan. Turkey
Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

 also provides scolarships to large number of Pakistani students to study in Turkish universities. President
President of Pakistan
The President of Pakistan is the head of state, as well as figurehead, of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Recently passed an XVIII Amendment , Pakistan has a parliamentary democratic system of government. According to the Constitution, the President is chosen by the Electoral College to serve a...

 Pervez Musharraf
Pervez Musharraf
Pervez Musharraf , is a retired four-star general who served as the 13th Chief of Army Staff and tenth President of Pakistan as well as tenth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee. Musharraf headed and led an administrative military government from October 1999 till August 2007. He ruled...

 studied in Turkey and spoke Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

 fluently.

The word Urdu is of Turkic origin, as Urdu was originally called Zaban-e-Ordu or language of the Army, ordu meaning army in Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

.

English (official language)


English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 is the official language
Official language
An official language is a language that is given a special legal status in a particular country, state, or other jurisdiction. Typically a nation's official language will be the one used in that nation's courts, parliament and administration. However, official status can also be used to give a...

, being widely used within the government
Government of Pakistan
The Government of Pakistan is a federal parliamentary system, with an indirectly-elected President as the Head of State and Commander in Chief of the Pakistani Armed Forces, and an indirectly-elected Prime Minister as the Head of Government. The President’s appointment and term are...

, by the civil service and the officer ranks of the military. Pakistan's Constitution
Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is the supreme law of Pakistan. Known as the Constitution of 1973, it was drafted by the government of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and, following additions by the opposition parties, was approved by the legislative assembly on April 10, 1973...

 and laws are written in English. Nearly all schools, colleges and universities, use English as the medium of instruction
Medium of instruction
Medium of instruction is a language used in teaching. It may or may not be the official language of the country or territory. Where the first language of students is different from the official language, it may be used as the medium of instruction for part or all of schooling. Bilingual or...

. Amongst the more educated social circles of Pakistan, English is seen as the language of upward mobility and its use is becoming more prevalent in upper social circles often spoken alongside native Pakistani languages. Among countries that use English as an official language, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 is the third most populous in the world.

Minor languages


Other languages spoken by linguistic minorities include Aer, Badeshi
Badeshi language
Badeshi is an Indo-Iranian language spoken in the upper reaches of the Bishigram Valley , east of Madyan, Swat, Kohistan in Northern Areas of Pakistan....

, Bagri
Bagri language
Bagri is a dialect of Rajasthani language of the Indo-Aryan family. It is spoken by about five million speakers in Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar districts of Rajasthan, Sirsa and Hissar districts of Haryana, Firozepur and Muktsar districts of Punjab of India and Bahawalpur and Bahawalnagar areas...

, Balti, Bateri, Bhaya, Brahui, Burushaski, Chilisso, Chitrali
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Dameli
Dameli
Dameli is a language spoken by approximately 5,000 people in the Domel Valley, in the Chitral District of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan....

, Dehwari, Dhatki
Dhatki language
Dhatki, also known as Dhati or Thari, is one of the Rajasthani languages of the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European language family. It is most closely related to Marwari.-Speakers:...

, Domaaki
Domaaki language
Domaakí – also known as Dumaki or Domaá – is a language spoken by a few hundred people living in the Northern Areas of Pakistan.It belongs to the Indo-European language family, and can be affiliated to the Dardic group of the Indo-Iranian branch....

, Farsi (Dari)
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Gawar-Bati, Ghera, Goaria, Gowro, Gujarati
Gujarati language
Gujarati is an Indo-Aryan language, and part of the greater Indo-European language family. It is derived from a language called Old Gujarati which is the ancestor language of the modern Gujarati and Rajasthani languages...

, Gujari, Gurgula, Hazaragi, Indo-Pakistani Sign Language, Jadgali, Jandavra, Kabutra, Khowar
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Kachchi (Kutchi)
Kutchi language
Kachhi Kachhi Kachhi (also spelt Cutchi, Kutchhi or Kachchhi, is an Indo-Aryan Language spoken in the Kutch region of the Indian state of Gujarat as well as in Sindh.- Closely related languages :...

, Kalami
Kalami language
Kalami is a Dardic language spoken in northern Pakistan.The language is also known as Gawri or Garwi , but this name is considered pejorative by some speakers.-Classification:...

, Kalasha
Kalasha
Kalasha, also spelled as Kalash and kalasa , is a metal pot with a large base and small mouth, large enough to hold a coconut. Sometimes "Kalasha" also refers to such a pot filled with water and topped with a coronet of mango leaves and a coconut...

, Kalkoti, Kamviri, Kati, Khetrani
Khetrani language
Khetrani or Khetranki is an Indo Indo-European language. It is spoken in north east Balochistan province in Pakistan. The population is speaking this language is 4,000....

, Khowar
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Indus Kohistani, Koli (three varieties), Lasi, Loarki, Marwari
Marwari language
The Marwari language , also variously Marvari, Marwadi, Marvadi), is spoken in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Marwari is also found in the neighboring state of Gujarat and Haryana and in Eastern Pakistan...

, Memoni
Memoni language
The Memoni language is the language of Memons historically associated with Kathiawar, in West India, a Memon subgroup. Many Memons have settled in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan since the independence in 1947...

, Od, Ormuri
Ormuri language
Ormuri is a member of the Southeastern branch of the Eastern Iranian languages, but attempts to classify Ormuri in the Northwestern Iranian languages have also been made. It is spoken in the city of Kaniguram in South Waziristan, Pakistan by the Burki people. It may also be spoken by a few people...

, Pahari-Potwari, Palula (Phalura), Sansi, Savi, Shina (two varieties)
Shina language
Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

, Torwali
Torwali language
The Torwali , or Turvali, language is spoken in Kohistan and Swat districts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan. The language is indigenous to the Torwali people who live in scattered hamlets in the mountainous upper reaches of the Swat valley, above the Pashto-speaking town of Madyan up...

, Ushojo, Vaghri, Wakhi
Wakhi language
Wakhi is an Indo-European language in the branch of Eastern Iranian language family and is intimately related to other Southeastern Iranian languages in the Pamir languages group.-Classification and Distribution:...

, Waneci, and Yidgha. Some of these have a few hundred speakers, while others have tens of thousands of speakers. A few are highly endangered languages that may soon have no speakers at all.

There are around 75 to 80 known languages of Pakistan although, in practice, there are primarily seven major languages in Pakistan spoken by 95% of the population: Punjabi, Pashto, Sindhi, Saraiki, Urdu, Persian, and Balochi. The official language
Official language
An official language is a language that is given a special legal status in a particular country, state, or other jurisdiction. Typically a nation's official language will be the one used in that nation's courts, parliament and administration. However, official status can also be used to give a...

 is English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 and the national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 is Urdu, the census indicates that around 8% of the population speak Urdu as their first language
First language
A first language is the language a person has learned from birth or within the critical period, or that a person speaks the best and so is often the basis for sociolinguistic identity...

. However, due to rapid urbanization and modernization, the use of Urdu as a primary language is increasing, especially amongst the growing urbanized middle class of Pakistan. Around 44% speak Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

, 15.5% speak Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, 15.5% speak Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

, 10.5% Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, 7.5% Urdu, 3.5% Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 and 3.5% other languages (Hindko, Brahui etc.) as their first language. Most Pakistanis, however, speak or understand at least two to three languages and almost all Pakistanis speak or understand the national language, Urdu.

The most prevalent native languages appear in bold below, with the percentage of the population speaking them as their first language rounded to the nearest percentage point:

Indo-European


Most of the languages of Pakistan belong to the Indo-Iranian branch
Indo-Iranian languages
The Indo-Iranian language group constitutes the easternmost extant branch of the Indo-European family of languages. It consists of three language groups: the Indo-Aryan, Iranian and Nuristani...

 of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

. They are divided between two major groups of that branch: Indo-Aryan
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

 (the majority, including Urdu, Punjabi, Sindhi, Persian, Hindko, and Saraiki, among others), and Iranian
Iranian languages
The Iranian languages form a subfamily of the Indo-Iranian languages which in turn is a subgroup of Indo-European language family. They have been and are spoken by Iranian peoples....

 (including Pashto, Balochi, and Khowar, among others).

Indo-Aryan and Iranian languages are further divided into groups of languages, although the reasons for the divisions are not always well-documented. Indo-Aryan languages all belong to the same language genus Indo-Aryan, and Iranian languages all belong to a different language genus (Iranian).

Some of the important languages in the Indo-Aryan group are dialect continuum
Dialect continuum
A dialect continuum, or dialect area, was defined by Leonard Bloomfield as a range of dialects spoken across some geographical area that differ only slightly between neighboring areas, but as one travels in any direction, these differences accumulate such that speakers from opposite ends of the...

s. One of these is Lahnda
Lahnda languages
The Lahnda or Western Punjabi Languages are an Indo-Aryan languages dialect continuum that are Mutually intelligible and are spoken in South Asia.According to the Ethnologue they include:...

, and includes Western Panjabi (but not the Panjabi of India and Pakistan), Northern Hindko, Southern Hindko, Khetrani, Saraiki, and Pahari-Potwari, plus two more languages outside of Pakistan. The other is Marwari, and includes Marwari of Pakistan and several languages of India (Dhundari, Marwari, Merwari, Mewari, and Shekhawati). A third is Rajasthani
Rajasthani language
Rajasthani Rajasthani Rajasthani (Devanagari: , Perso-Arabic: is a language of the Indo-Aryan languages family. It is spoken by 50 million people in Rajasthan and other states of India and in some areas of Pakistan. The number of speakers may be up to 80 million worldwide...

, and consists of Bagri
Bagri language
Bagri is a dialect of Rajasthani language of the Indo-Aryan family. It is spoken by about five million speakers in Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar districts of Rajasthan, Sirsa and Hissar districts of Haryana, Firozepur and Muktsar districts of Punjab of India and Bahawalpur and Bahawalnagar areas...

, Gujari in Pakistan and several others in India: Gade Lohar, Harauti (Hadothi), Malvi, and Wagdi.

There are several dialects continuums in the Iranian group as well: Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, which includes Eastern, Western and Southern Balochi; Pashtun, and includes Northern, Central, and Southern Pashto; and Persian, which includes Western Farsi in Iran and Eastern Farsi in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Non-Indo-European


The following four languages of Pakistan are not part of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

:
  • Brahui (spoken in central Balochistan province) is a Dravidian language
    Dravidian languages
    The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

    . Its vocabulary has been significantly influenced by Balochi. It has been suggested, with evidence, to be linked to the ancient Indus valley civilization
    Indus Valley Civilization
    The Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilization that was located in the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent, consisting of what is now mainly modern-day Pakistan and northwest India...

    , but oral history and linguistic evidence indicates that it is a fairly recent immigrant to the area from southeastern India
  • The Balti dialect of Ladakhi
    Ladakhi language
    The Ladakhi language , now also called Bhoti, and by linguists more generally called Western Archaic Tibetan when the Balti and Burig or Purig or Purki dialects are included, is the predominant language in the Ladakh region of the Jammu and Kashmir state of India, and is also spoken in Baltistan...

     (spoken in an area of southern Gilgit-Baltistan) is a Tibetan language of the Tibeto-Burman language family
  • Burushaski (spoken in Hunza, Nagar, Yasin, and Ishkoman valleys in Gilgit-Baltistan) is a language isolate
    Language isolate
    A language isolate, in the absolute sense, is a natural language with no demonstrable genealogical relationship with other languages; that is, one that has not been demonstrated to descend from an ancestor common with any other language. They are in effect language families consisting of a single...

     with no written script

Writing systems





All languages of Pakistan are written in Nastaʿlīq, a modified Perso-Arabic script. The Mughal Empire
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 used Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 as the court language
Language
Language may refer either to the specifically human capacity for acquiring and using complex systems of communication, or to a specific instance of such a system of complex communication...

 during their rule over South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. During this time, came into widespread use in South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. The influence remains to this day. In Pakistan, almost everything in Urdu is written in the script, concentrating the greater part of Nastaʿlīq usage in the world.

After the Islamic conquest of Persia
Islamic conquest of Persia
The Muslim conquest of Persia led to the end of the Sassanid Empire in 644, the fall of Sassanid dynasty in 651 and the eventual decline of the Zoroastrian religion in Persia...

, Iranians adopted the Perso-Arabic script and the art of Persian calligraphy
Persian calligraphy
Persian Calligraphy is the calligraphy of Persian writing system. It has been one of the most revered arts throughout Persian history. It is considered to be one of the most eye catching and fascinating manifestations of Persian culture.-History:...

 flourished in Iran alongside other Islamic countries. Apparently, Mir Ali Tabrizi
Mir Ali Tabrizi
Mir Ali Tabrizi also known as Mir Ali Heravi is distinguished Persian. The precision of tradition still allows for creativity, and there is a telling story of a famous Persian calligrapher, Mir Ali Tabrizi Mir Ali Tabrizi also known as Mir Ali Heravi (b. in Herat Afghanistan and d. in Tabriz in...

 (14th century) developed by combining two existing scripts of
{{Languages of
|country = Pakistan
|national =
Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...


|official = Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

, English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...


|main = Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 (44.15%), Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 (15.42%), Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 (14.1%), Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

(12.1%), Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

 (7.57%) (understood by 90%), Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 (3.57%)
|regional = Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

; Hindko
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

; Kashmiri
Kashmiri language
Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

;
|minor = Burushaski; Kalash; Khowar; Shina
Shina
Shina can refer to:* Shina , a Japanese term for mainland China* Shina , Shina Gado, a character from the Bloody Roar video game series* Shina people, Dardic people of Pakistani Kashmir* Shin of Hindukush...

; Balti
Balti language
Balti is a language spoken in Baltistan, in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and adjoining parts of Ladakh. Baltistan, before 1948, was part of Ladakh province. The Balti language is a dialect of the Ladakhi language, a form of Tibetan. It is mutually intelligible with Ladakhi proper and Burig...

; Brahui; Farsi
Dari (Persian)
Dari or Fārsī-ye Darī in historical terms refers to the Persian court language of the Sassanids. In contemporary usage, the term refers to the dialects of modern Persian language spoken in Afghanistan, and hence known as Afghan Persian in some Western sources. It is the term officially recognized...


|other = Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

; Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

; Bengali
Bengali language
Bengali or Bangla is an eastern Indo-Aryan language. It is native to the region of eastern South Asia known as Bengal, which comprises present day Bangladesh, the Indian state of West Bengal, and parts of the Indian states of Tripura and Assam. It is written with the Bengali script...

; Gujarati
Gujarati language
Gujarati is an Indo-Aryan language, and part of the greater Indo-European language family. It is derived from a language called Old Gujarati which is the ancestor language of the modern Gujarati and Rajasthani languages...

; Memoni
Memoni language
The Memoni language is the language of Memons historically associated with Kathiawar, in West India, a Memon subgroup. Many Memons have settled in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan since the independence in 1947...


|foreign =
|sign = Indo-Pakistani Sign Language
|keyboard = Urdu keyboard
Urdu keyboard
The Urdu keyboardاردو is any keyboard layout for an Urdu computer and typewriter keyboards. Since the first Urdu typewriter was made available in 1911, the layout has gone through various phases of evolution. With time, the variety of layouts introduced in the 1950s for mechanised compositions have...


|keyboard image =
}}
Languages of Pakistan include two official languages: Urdu, which is also Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

's national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 and lingua franca
Lingua franca
A lingua franca is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.-Characteristics:"Lingua franca" is a functionally defined term, independent of the linguistic...

, and English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Additionally, Pakistan has four major provincial languages: Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

, Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

, Farsi(Persian) and Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, as well as three major regional languages: Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, Hindko
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 and Kashmiri
Kashmiri language
Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

.

Most of the languages of Pakistan belong to the Indo-Aryan languages of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

.

Statistics

Rank Language 1998 census 1982 census 1961 census 1951 census
1 Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

44.15% 48.17% 66.39% 67.08%
2 Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

15.42% 13.15% 8.47% 8.16%
3 Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

14.1% 11.7% 12.59% 12.85%
4 Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

*
10.53% 9.54% --  -- 
5 Urdu 7.57% 7.60% 7.57% 7.05%
6 Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

3.57% 3.02% 2.49% 3.04%

  • Seraiki
    Saraiki language
    Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

     was included with Punjabi
    Punjabi language
    Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

     in 1951 and 1961 census


Following are the major languages spoken in Pakistan. The percentage of Pakistanis who are native speakers of that language is also given.
Numbers of speakers of larger languages
Language 2008 estimate 1998 census Areas of Predominance
1 Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

76,367,360 44.17% 58,433,431 44.15% Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

2 Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

26,692,890 15.44% 20,408,621 15.42% Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
3 Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

24,410,910 14.12% 18,661,571 14.10% Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

4 Seraiki 18,019,610 10.42% 13,936,594 10.53% Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

5 Urdu 13,120,540 7.59% 10,019,576 7.57% Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

6 Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

6,204,540 3.59% 4,724,871 3.57% Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...


National language: Urdu


Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

 ({{Nastaliq|اردو}}) is the national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 ({{Nastaliq|قومی زبان}}), lingua franca and one of two official languages of Pakistan (the other being English). Although only about 8% of Pakistanis speak it as their first language, it is spoken as a second and often third language by nearly all Pakistanis. Its introduction as the lingua franca
Lingua franca
A lingua franca is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.-Characteristics:"Lingua franca" is a functionally defined term, independent of the linguistic...

 was encouraged by the British
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

 upon the capitulation and annexation of Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 (1843) and Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 (1849) with the subsequent ban on the use of Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

. The decision to make the language change was to institute a universal language throughout the then British Raj
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

 in South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

 as well as minimize the influence of Persia, Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

, Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 and Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

 had on this transitional region. Urdu is a relatively new language in the contemporary sense but has undergone considerable modifications and development borrowing heavily on the traditions of older languages like Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

, Turkish
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

 and local South Asian languages
Languages of South Asia
South Asia is home to several hundred languages. Most languages spoken in India belong either to the Indo-European , the Dravidian , the Austroasiatic , or the Tibeto-Burman South Asia is home to several hundred languages. Most languages spoken in India belong either to the Indo-European (ca....

 all of which can be found in its vocabulary. It began as a standardized register of Hindi and in its spoken form. It is widely used, both formally and informally, for personal letters as well as public literature, in the literary sphere and in the popular media. It is a required subject of study in all primary and secondary schools. It is the first language of most Muhajirs (Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 refugees that fled from genocide
Genocide
Genocide is defined as "the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group", though what constitutes enough of a "part" to qualify as genocide has been subject to much debate by legal scholars...

 and pograms from different parts of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 after independence of Pakistan in 1947) that form nearly 8% of Pakistan's population and is an acquired language. As Pakistan's national language, Urdu has been promoted to promote national unity. It is written with a modified form of the Perso-Arabic alphabet, usually in Nastaliq script, and its basic Hindustani vocabulary has been enriched by words from Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

, Turkic languages
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

 and English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Urdu has drawn inspiration from Persian literature
Persian literature
Persian literature spans two-and-a-half millennia, though much of the pre-Islamic material has been lost. Its sources have been within historical Persia including present-day Iran as well as regions of Central Asia where the Persian language has historically been the national language...

 and has now an enormous stock of words from that language. In recent years, the Urdu spoken in Pakistan has gradually been influenced by many of the native languages including Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 and Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 in terms of intonation, as well as incorporating terminology from those languages. As such the language is constantly developing and has acquired a particularly "Pakistani" flavour to it distinguishing itself from that spoken in ancient times and in India. The first poetry in Urdu was by the Persian poet Amir Khusro
Amir Khusro
Ab'ul Hasan Yamīn ud-Dīn Khusrow , better known as Amīr Khusrow Dehlawī , was an Indian musician, scholar and poet. He was an iconic figure in the cultural history of the Indian subcontinent...

 (1253–1325) and the first Urdu book "Woh Majlis" was written in 1728; the first time the word "Urdu" was used was by Sirajuddin Ali Khan Arzoo in 1741. The Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 Emperor
Emperor
An emperor is a monarch, usually the sovereign ruler of an empire or another type of imperial realm. Empress, the female equivalent, may indicate an emperor's wife or a woman who rules in her own right...

 Aurangzeb Alamgir
Aurangzeb
Abul Muzaffar Muhy-ud-Din Muhammad Aurangzeb Alamgir , more commonly known as Aurangzeb or by his chosen imperial title Alamgir , was the sixth Mughal Emperor of India, whose reign lasted from 1658 until his death in 1707.Badshah Aurangzeb, having ruled most of the Indian subcontinent for nearly...

 (1658-1707) spoke Urdu (or Hindustani
Hindustani language
Hindi-Urdu is an Indo-Aryan language and the lingua franca of North India and Pakistan. It is also known as Hindustani , and historically, as Hindavi or Rekhta...

) fluently as did his descendants while his ancestors mostly spoke Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and Turkish.

Punjabi



Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 (پنجابی) is spoken as a first language by more than 44% of Pakistanis, mostly in Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 as well as by a large number of people in Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

. However, Punjabi does not have any official status in Pakistan. The exact numbers of Punjabi speakers in Pakistan is hard to find since there are many dialects / languages, such as Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, which some regard as part of Punjabi and others regard as separate language. When taking into account Hindko, Potwari, Pahari, Saraiki, Punjabi dialects are thus spoken by almost 60% of the population in Pakistan. The standard Punjabi dialects is from Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Sialkot
Sialkot
Sialkot is a city in Pakistan situated in the north-east of the Punjab province at the foothills of snow-covered peaks of Kashmir near the Chenab river. It is the capital of Sialkot District. The city is about north-west of Lahore and only a few kilometers from Indian-controlled Jammu.The...

, Gujranwala
Gujranwala
Gujranwala is a industrial city in the north-east of the Punjab province. It is the sixth largest city in Pakistan with a population of approximately 2,661,360 as on 24 June 2011...

 and Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura or Shekhupur , formerly Kot Dayal Das or Singhpuria or Virkgarh , is an industrial city in the province of Punjab slightly northwest to Lahore in Pakistan. It is known for its historical places, and is commonly known locally as Qila Shaikhupura, because of the fort in the city,...

 districts of the Pakistani Punjab which was used by Waris Shah
Waris Shah
Waris Shah was a Punjabi Sufi poet, renowned for his contribution to Punjabi literature. He is best-known for his seminal work Heer Ranjha, based on the traditional folk tale of Heer and her lover Ranjha. Heer is considered one of the quintessential works of classical Punjabi literature...

 (1722–1798) in his famous book Heer Ranjha
Heer Ranjha
For 1970 Hindi movie of same name and characters, see Heer Raanjha.Heer Ranjha is one of the four popular tragic romances of the Punjab. The other three are Mirza Sahiba, Sassi Punnun and Sohni Mahiwal. There are several poetic narrations of the story, the most famous being 'Heer' by Waris Shah...

 and is also now days the language of Punjabi literature, film and music; such as Lollywood
Lollywood
Lollywood refers to the Pakistani film industry based in the city of Lahore. The word "Lollywood" was first coined in the summer of 1989 in the now defunct magazine "Glamour" published from Karachi by a gossip columnist Saleem Nasir. The film industry in Lahore started in 1929 with the opening of...

. Other dialects are Multani or Saraiki in the West and South, Pothowari & Hindko in the North, Dogri in the mountain areas and Saraiki in the Sargodha
Sargodha
Sargodha is a city in the Sargodha District of Punjab province, Pakistan.Sargodha is located in the northwest of Pakistan. It is the eleventh largest city of Pakistan and also known as Pakistan's best citrus-producing area. It is an agricultural trade centre with various industries...

 district.

Punjabi is descended from Prakrit
Prakrit
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...

 in the Vedic period (1700 B.C.), Pali
Páli
- External links :* *...

, Old Persian and Apabhramsha
Apabhramsha
Apabhraṃśa is a term used by Sanskrit grammarians since Patañjali to refer to dialects that deviate from the norm of Sanskrit grammar. The term in Sanskrit literally means "corrupt" or "non-grammatical language". It is used as a cover term for the dialects forming the transition between the late...

 in the Ashoka
Ashoka
Ashok Maurya or Ashoka , popularly known as Ashoka the Great, was an Indian emperor of the Maurya Dynasty who ruled almost all of the Indian subcontinent from ca. 269 BC to 232 BC. One of India's greatest emperors, Ashoka reigned over most of present-day India after a number of military conquests...

 period (273 B.C. - 232 B.C.) and Hindvi, Lahori and Multani in the Muslim period (711 A.D. - 1857 A.D.) Punjabi literature was principally spiritual in nature and has had a very rich oral tradition. The Great poetry written by Sufi saints has been the folklore of the Punjab and is still sung with great love in any part of Punjab.

Punjabi dialects include:

Major Punjabi dialects in Pakistan


Majhi
Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect is referred to as the standard dialect of Punjabi language originating from the Majha region of the Punjab...

 or Standard Punjabi
The Majhi dialect is Punjabi's prestige dialect
Prestige dialect
In sociolinguistics, prestige describes the level of respect accorded to a language or dialect as compared to that of other languages or dialects in a speech community. The concept of prestige in sociolinguistics is closely related to that of prestige or class within a society...

 and spoken in the heart of Punjab where most of the Punjabi population lives. The Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect is referred to as the standard dialect of Punjabi language originating from the Majha region of the Punjab...

 is the dialect of the historical region of Majha
Majha
Majha is a region of the Punjab comprising the modern districts of Amritsar, Gurdaspur and Tarn Taran in the Indian State of Punjab and the districts of Narowal, Lahore and Kasur in the Pakistani Province of Punjab. The term previously applied to Panjabis living north of the Sutlej...

, which spans the Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura or Shekhupur , formerly Kot Dayal Das or Singhpuria or Virkgarh , is an industrial city in the province of Punjab slightly northwest to Lahore in Pakistan. It is known for its historical places, and is commonly known locally as Qila Shaikhupura, because of the fort in the city,...

, Kasur
Kasur
Kasur , the capital of Kasur District in Pakistan. Kasur is located adjacent to the border of Ganda Singh Wala between Pakistan and India, and is a tourist attraction because of the daily occurring Flags lowering ceremony...

, Okara
Okara, Pakistan
Okara is the capital city of Okara District in the Punjab province of Pakistan. The name Okara is derived from Okaan, a name of a tree, the city is located south-west to the city of Lahore and is famous for its agriculture-based economy and cotton mills...

, Gujranwala
Gujranwala
Gujranwala is a industrial city in the north-east of the Punjab province. It is the sixth largest city in Pakistan with a population of approximately 2,661,360 as on 24 June 2011...

, Wazirabad
Wazirabad
AYAZ KHANWazirabad is an industrial city located in Gujranwala District, Punjab, Pakistan. Wazirabad is situated on the banks of the Chenab River nearly 100 kilometres north of Lahore on the Grand Trunk Road. It is 45 kilometres from Sialkot, 30 kilometres from the district capital - Gujranwala...

, Sialkot
Sialkot
Sialkot is a city in Pakistan situated in the north-east of the Punjab province at the foothills of snow-covered peaks of Kashmir near the Chenab river. It is the capital of Sialkot District. The city is about north-west of Lahore and only a few kilometers from Indian-controlled Jammu.The...

, Narowal
Narowal
Narowal is a city in the northeast of the Punjab province of Pakistan. The city is the capital of Narowal District and tehsil. It is situated on the banks of Ravi River about 4–5 km from the Indian border.-Etymology:...

, Gujrat
Gujrat
Gujrat is a city in Pakistan. It is the capital of Gujrat District and the Gujrat Tehsil subdivision in the Punjab Province. People living in Gujrat refer to themselves as Gujratis, which sometimes leads to confusion with people from the Indian state of Gujarat which adjoins Pakistan...

 and to some extant in Jhelum
Jhelum
Jhelum or Jehlum may refer to:* Jhelum, a city in Pakistan on the banks of the Jhelum River* Jhelum District, an administrative division in Punjab, Pakistan surrounding the city of Jhelum...

 District of Pakistani Punjab and Amritsar
Amritsar
Amritsar is a city in the northern part of India and is the administrative headquarters of Amritsar district in the state of Punjab, India. The 2001 Indian census reported the population of the city to be over 1,500,000, with that of the entire district numbering 3,695,077...

, Tarn Taran Sahib
Tarn Taran Sahib
Tarn Taran Sahib a city in the Indian state of Punjab. It is the district headquarters and hosts the municipal council of Taran Taran district.-History:Tarn Taran Sahib was founded by the fifth Sikh Guru Shri Guru Arjan Dev Ji...

, and Gurdaspur
Gurdaspur
Gurdaspur is a city in the state of Punjab, situated in the northwest part of the Republic of India. It is located in the center of and is the administrative head of Gurdaspur District. It was the location of a fort which was famous for the siege it sustained in 1712 from the Mughals...

 Districts of the India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

n State of Punjab
Punjab (India)
Punjab ) is a state in the northwest of the Republic of India, forming part of the larger Punjab region. The state is bordered by the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh to the east, Haryana to the south and southeast and Rajasthan to the southwest as well as the Pakistani province of Punjab to the...

.


Jhangochi
Jhangochi (جھنگوچی) dialect is spoken in Pakistani Punjab. Jhangochi or Rachnavi is the oldest and most idiosyncratic dialect of the Punjabi. It is spoken throughout a widespread area, starting from Khanewal and Jhang at both ends of Ravi and Chenab to Gujranwala district. It then runs down to Bahawalnagar and Chishtian areas, on the banks of river Sutlej. This entire area has almost the same traditions, customs and culture. The Jhangochi dialect of Punjabi has several aspects that set it apart from other Punjabi variants. This area has a great culture and heritage, especially literary heritage, as it is credited with the creation of the famous epic romance stories of Heer Ranjha and Mirza Sahiba. It is spoken in the Bar areas of Punjab, i.e., areas whose names are often suffixed with 'Bar', for example Sandal Bar, Kirana Bar, Neeli Bar, Ganji Bar and also from Khanewal to Jhang includes Faisalabad and Chiniot.


Shahpuri
The Shahpuri dialect is mainly spoken in Pakistani Punjab. This dialect has been spoken by the people of District Sargodha including Dera Chanpeer Shah, Khushab, Jhang, Mianwali, Attock, parts of Faisalabad (formerly Lyallpur), parts of Dera Ismail Khan, Dera Ghazi Khan, Bahawalnagar, Chakwal, Mianwali, Sargodha, Khushab and Mandi Bahauddin districts.


Pothowari
This dialect is spoken in northern Pakistani Punjab. mainly The area where Pothowari
Pothohari language
Potwari , also known as Potohari ), is a rich north Indian sub-continent dialect spoken in the Pothohar Plateau around Rawalpindi, Kahuta, Gujar Khan, Jehlum, up to Gujrat in the south and Chakwal in the West, Hazara in the north, Azad Kashmir in the east and also by Sikhs from the Pothohar...

 is spoken extends in the north from Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad is the capital of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan. It is located in Muzaffarabad District on the banks of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers...

 to as far south as Jhelum
Jhelum
Jhelum or Jehlum may refer to:* Jhelum, a city in Pakistan on the banks of the Jhelum River* Jhelum District, an administrative division in Punjab, Pakistan surrounding the city of Jhelum...

, Gujar Khan
Gujar Khan
Gujar Khan is a city in Rawalpindi District, Punjab, Pakistan. It is the headquarters of Gujar Khan Tehsil, the largest tehsil of Punjab. It is approximately 55 kilometres southeast of Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan and 220 km to the north west of Lahore, capital of Punjab...

 and Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi , locally known as Pindi, is a city in the Pothohar region of Pakistan near Pakistan's capital city of Islamabad, in the province of Punjab. Rawalpindi is the fourth largest city in Pakistan after Karachi, Lahore and Faisalabad...

. [phr] 49,440 (2000 WCD). Murree Hills north of Rawalpindi, and east to Bhimber
Bhimber
Bhimber is the chief town of Bhimber District, Azad Kashmir. The town is situated on the border between Azad Kashmir and Pakistan at a distance of about 50 km from Mirpur, about 48 km from Gujrat and about 166 km from Islamabad.-History:...

. Poonchi is east of Rawalakot
Rawalakot
Rawalakot , is a city in Azad Kashmir, and is the capital of Poonch Division and Poonch District. It is in a saucer-shaped valley at an elevation of 1,615 metres ....

. Potwari is in the plains around Rawalpindi. Alternate names: Potwari, Pothohari, Potohari, Chibhali, Dhundi-Kairali. Dialects: Pahari (Dhundi-Kairali), Pothwari (Potwari), Chibhali, Punchhi (Poonchi), Jhelumi, Mirpuri. Pahari means 'hill language' referring to a string of divergent dialects, some of which may be separate languages. A dialect chain with Panjabi and Hindko. Closeness to western Pahari is unknown. Lexical similarity 76% to 83% among varieties called 'Pahari', 'Potwari', and some called 'Hindko' in Mansehra
Mansehra
Mansehra city is located at in Mansehra District, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is very near to Abbottabad city. It is a major stop for tourists on the Karakoram Highway which leads to China...

, Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad is the capital of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan. It is located in Muzaffarabad District on the banks of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers...

, and Jammun. Classification: Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Northern zone, Western Pahari.


Hindko
Classified under Lahnda languages
Lahnda languages
The Lahnda or Western Punjabi Languages are an Indo-Aryan languages dialect continuum that are Mutually intelligible and are spoken in South Asia.According to the Ethnologue they include:...

 by many linguists; perhaps differs from Punjabi. Hindko dialect is spoken in north west Pakistani Punjab and North-West Frontier Province
North-West Frontier Province
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa , formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province and various other names, is one of the four provinces of Pakistan, located in the north-west of the country...

 mainly this dialect is spoken in districts of Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Attock
Attock
Attock is a city located in the northern border of the Punjab province of Pakistan and the headquarters of Attock District...

, Nowshehra
Nowshehra
Nowshehra or Naushera is a town and a notified area committee in Rajauri district in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.-Geography:Nowshehra is located at . It has an average elevation of 1,575 metres .-Demographics:...

, Mansehra
Mansehra
Mansehra city is located at in Mansehra District, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is very near to Abbottabad city. It is a major stop for tourists on the Karakoram Highway which leads to China...

, Balakot
Balakot
Balakot , is a town in Mansehra District in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. The town was destroyed during the 2005 earthquake and later rebuilt with the assistance of the Government of Pakistan and Saudi Public Assistance for Pakistan Earthquake Victims , a Saudi relief organization...

, Abbottabad
Abbottabad
Abbottabad is a city located in the Hazara region of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in Pakistan. The city is situated in the Orash Valley, northeast of the capital Islamabad and east of Peshawar at an altitude of and is the capital of the Abbottabad District...

 and Murree
Murree
Murree city is a popular hill station and a summer resort, especially for the residents of Rawalpindi/Islamabad, and for the cities of the province of Punjab, Pakistan...

 and the lower half of Neelum District
Neelum District
Neelum District is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. Until recently it was part of Muzaffarabad District. It is bound by the Gilgit to the North, with Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipore Districts of Indian-administered Kashmir in India to the South and Southeast,...

 and Muzafarabad.


Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

Saraiki or Multani (also Lehndi by some) is spoken in Pakistani Punjab.It perhaps differ more than any other dialect of Punjabi. It becomes more and more different as you move down south, as the influence of Sindhi increases. Saraiki itself is Sindhi word and means northern.It is now considered as separate language, instead of merely a dialect of Punjabi.It is mostly spoken in southern and western districts of Punjab,which comprises Multan, Lodhran, Bahawalpur, Mianwali, Bhakkar, Layyah, Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffargarh, Rahim Yar Khan, southern and western parts of Khanewal, southern parts of Bahawalnagar and western parts of Khushab districts. It is also spoken by majority of population of Dera Ismail Khan district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (خیبر پښتونخوا) province, kachi plain of Balochistan, northern parts of Sindh, and cities of Hyderabad and Karachi.


Dhani
The people of Pothohar speak Pothohari dialect. However, the people of Chakwal or the Dhanni area in particular do not speak Pothohari and are ethnologically not regarded as Potoharis. They speak a distinctive Chakwali or Dhanni dialect of Punjabi, which is closer to Shahpuri, a dialect spoken in the Shahpur-Salt Range area and also has a slight element of Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

 and Pothohari.

Pashto


Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 (پشتو) Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 is spoken as a first language by 15.5% (28-30 millions) of Pakistanis, mostly in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and in Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 as well as by immigrants to the eastern provinces who are often not counted due to census irregularities. The Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 has rich written literary traditions as well as an oral tradition. There are two major dialect patterns within which the various individual dialects may be classified; these are Pakhto, which is the Northern (Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

) variety, and the softer Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 spoken in the southern areas. Khushal Khan Khattak
Khushal Khan Khattak
Khushal Khan Khattak was a prominent Pashtun malik, poet, warrior,A charismatic personality and tribal chief of the Khattak tribe. He wrote a huge collection of Pashto poems during the Mughal Empire in the 17th century, and admonished Pashtuns to forsake their divisive tendencies and unite...

 (1613–1689) and Rahman Baba
Rahman Baba
Abdul Rahman Baba is popularly known as Rahman Baba , was a Pashtun Muslim poet from Peshawar in modern-day Pakistan who remains the most popular poet among the Pashtuns...

 (1633–1708) were the most famous poets in the Pashto language. In the last part of 20th century, Pakhto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 or Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 has produced some great poets like Ghani Khan
Ghani Khan
Ghani Khan is widely considered as one of the best Pashto language poets of the 20th century, along with Ameer Hamza Shinwari. He stands on a par with Khushal Khan Khattak and Rahman Baba. He was also a respected writer and artist...

, Khatir Afridi
Khatir Afridi
Khatir Afridi was born as Misree Khan in 1929, at Landi Kotal, Federally Administered Tribal Areas, Pakistan near the border of Afghanistan, and died on August 24, 1961. Misree Khan was born to Afridi parents of the Zakka Khel clan. He was a prominent poet of the Pashto language but died young...

 and Amir Hamza Shinwari. There are also many Pakistanis from the adjacent regions of Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

, Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 and Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 who are conversant in Pashto and count it as their second language. They are not included in the overall percentage. Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

 is the biggest Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 speaking city in the world although the Pashto speakers constitute only about 20% of Karachi's population.

Sindhi



Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 (سنڌي) is spoken as a first language by 15.5% of Pakistanis, mostly in Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

. It has a rich literature and is used in schools. It is an Indo-Aryan
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

 (Indo-European
Indo-European
Indo-European may refer to:* Indo-European languages** Aryan race, a 19th century and early 20th century term for those peoples who are the native speakers of Indo-European languages...

) language, derived from Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

, and Arabic languages
Arabic languages
The Arabic language family consists of*Classical Arabic and its descendants, including** Modern Standard Arabic and colloquial varieties of Arabic **The various Judeo-Arabic languages **Maltese...

. The Arabs ruled Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 for more than 150 years after Muhammad bin Qasim
Muhammad bin Qasim
Muhammad bin Qasim Al-Thaqafi was a Umayyad general who, at the age of 17, began the conquest of the Sindh and Punjab regions along the Indus River for the Umayyad Caliphate. He was born in the city of Taif...

 conquered it in 712 AD, remaining there for three years to set up Arab rule. Consequently, the social fabric of Sindh contains elements of Arabic society. Sindhi is spoken by over 36 million people in Pakistan, and is the official language of Sindh province. It is widely spoken in the Lasbela District
Lasbela District
Lasbela is a coastal district of Balochistan province of Pakistan. It became a separate district in Kalat Division on 30 June 1954. The name is derived from the words Las which in Sanskrit signifies a settlement or lived in or lively and Bela which means "A Sea's Shore" in Sanskrit and is also the...

 of Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 (where the Lasi
Lasi
Lasi is a tribe settled in Lasbela District of Balochistan, Pakistan....

 tribe speaks a dialect of Sindhi), many areas of the Naseerabad
Nasirabad District
Nasirabad is a district in the centre-west of Balochistan, Pakistan. Nasirabad’s headquarters are at Dera Murad Jamali. The district was notified in 1974. For three years, from July 1987 to December 1990, it was known as Tamboo district. Tamboo is a small village 40 km west of Dera Murad...

 and Jafarabad
Jafarabad District
Jafarabad or Jaffarabad district lies in the South-East of the Pakistani province of Balochistan. Jafarabad’s headquarters are at Dera Allah Yar. Formerly known as the Jhatpat subdivision, the region was part of the Jacobabad District until 1970 and part of the Sibi District until 1975...

 districts of Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

, and by the Sindhi diaspora abroad. Sindhi language has six major dialects
Dialect
The term dialect is used in two distinct ways, even by linguists. One usage refers to a variety of a language that is a characteristic of a particular group of the language's speakers. The term is applied most often to regional speech patterns, but a dialect may also be defined by other factors,...

: Sireli, Vicholi, Lari, Thari, Lasi and Kachhi. It is written in the Arabic script with several additional letters to accommodate special sounds. The largest Sindhi-speaking cities are Karachi, Hyderabad
Hyderabad, Sindh
is the second largest city in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is the seventh largest city in the country. The city was founded in 1768 by Mian Ghulam Shah Kalhoro upon the ruins of a Mauryan fishing village along the bank of the Indus known as Neroon Kot...

, Sukkur
Sukkur
Sukkur, or Sakharu , formerly Aror and Bakar, is the third largest city of Sindh province, situated on the west bank of Indus River in Pakistan in Sukkur District. However, the word Sakharu in Sindhi means "superior", which the spelling of the city's name in Sindhi suggests is the origin of the...

, Shikarpur, Dadu, Jacobabad
Jacobabad
Jacobabad or Yaqubabad is the capital city of Jacobabad District, Sindh, Pakistan. The city is also the administrative centre of Jacobabad Taluka, an administrative subdivision of the district, the city is subdivided into 8 Union Councils...

, Larkana
Larkana
Larkana or Larkano is the fourth largest city in the north-western part of Sindh Province, Pakistan, and is located within Larkana District.The old name of larkano is chandka which was changed in 1901. In August 2000 Larkana celebrated its hundred years of existence...

 and Nawabshah
Nawabshah
Nawabshah , or Shaheed Benazirabad, is a district in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is headquarter of Shaheed Benazir Abad District...

. Sindhi literature
Sindhi literature
Sindhi literature is very rich and is generally considered to be among the world's oldest. Its writers have contributed extensively in various forms of literature both in poetry and prose.- Sufi literature and poetry :...

 is also spiritual in nature. Shah Abdul Latif Bhita'i (1689–1752) is one of its greatest poets, and wrote Sassi Punnun
Sassi Punnun
Sassi Punnun ; is one of the seven popular tragic romances from Sindh and Baluchistan. The other six are Umar Marui, Sohni Mehar, Lila Chanesar, Noori Jam Tamachi, Momal Rano and Dhaj, Ror Kumar commonly known as Seven Queens of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai...

 and Umar Marvi
Umar Marvi
Umar Marvi or Marui is a Sindh love story that appears in Shah Jo Risalo. It is a love story set in Sindh, Pakistan. Umar Marui is included in seven popular tragic romances from Sindh and Baluchistan...

, folk stories, in his famous book "Shah Jo Risalo
Shah Jo Risalo
Shah Jo Risalo is the name of the compiled verses of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai. Many scholars and linguists have published Shah Jo Risalo with their own compilations, hence many editions are available...

".

Sindhi Dialects:
  • Sindhi Siraiki - a version of siraiki regarded as a dialect of Sindhi
    Sindhi language
    Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

    ; spoken mainly in Upper Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

    .
  • Vicholi - in Vicholo, i.e. Central Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

    .
  • Lari - in Laru, i.e. Lower Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

  • Lasi - in Lasa B’elo, a part of Kohistan in Baluchistan on the western side of Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

  • Thari or Thareli - in Tharu, the desert region on the southeast border of Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

     and a part of the Jaisalmer
    Jaisalmer
    Jaysalmer , nicknamed "The Golden City", is a town in the Indian state of Rajasthan. It is located west from the state capital Jaipur. It was once known as Jaisalmer state. The town stands on a ridge of yellowish sandstone, crowned by a fort, which contains the palace and several ornate Jain...

     district in Rajasthan
    Rajasthan
    Rājasthān the land of Rajasthanis, , is the largest state of the Republic of India by area. It is located in the northwest of India. It encompasses most of the area of the large, inhospitable Great Indian Desert , which has an edge paralleling the Sutlej-Indus river valley along its border with...

  • Kachhi - in the Kutch region and in a part of Kathiawar in Gujarat, on the southern side of Sindh


Vicholi is considered as the standard dialect by all Sindhi speakers.

Balochi


Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 (بلوچی) is spoken as a first language by about 4% of Pakistanis, mostly in Balochistan province. It is believed that the language was brought to its present location in a series of migrations from the Kurdistan region of northeastern Iraq
Iraq
Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

 and northwestern Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

. Rakshani is the major dialect group in terms of numbers. Sarhaddi is a sub-dialect of Rakshani. Other sub-dialects are Kalati (Qalati), Chagai-Kharani and Panjguri. Eastern Hill Balochi or Northern Balochi is very different from the rest. Balochi language is very close to the Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 itself. The name Balochi or Baluchi is not found before the 10th Century. Rakshani is the major dialect group in terms of numbers. Sarhaddi, is a sub dialect of Rakshani. Other sub - dialects are Qalati, Chagai Kharani, and Makrani
Makrani
Makrani are the inhabitants of Makran coast of Balochistan in Iran and Pakistan.-Sheedi:Black Africans were enslaved and brought to Balochistan in medieval times. The descendants are called Makrani or Sheedi. The Sheedis are a Negroid people in Pakistan...

. The Eastern Hill Balochi or Northern Balochi are distinct dialects. The Kethran language in North East Balochistan is also a variant of Balochi. It is one of the 9 distinguished languages of Pakistan. Since Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 is a very poetic and rich language and have a certain degree of affinity to Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and Urdu, Balochi poets tend to be very good poets in Urdu as well and Ata Shaad, Gul Khan Nasir and Noon Meem Danish
Noon Meem Danish
Noor Mohammed Danish is a Pakistani poet of African and Baloch descent. He is more commonly known as Noon Meem Danish or N. M. Danish.-Early life and education:...

 are excellent examples of this.

Saraiki


Saraiki or Multani (also Lehndi by some) is spoken in Pakistani Punjab.It perhaps differ more than any other dialect of Punjabi. It becomes more and more different as you move down south, as the influence of Sindhi increases. Saraiki itself is Sindhi word and means northern.It is now considered as a separate language, instead of merely a dialect of Punjabi.It is mostly spoken in southern and western districts of Punjab,which comprises Multan, Lodhran, Bahawalpur, Mianwali, Bhakkar, Layyah, Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffargarh, Rahim Yar Khan, southern and western parts of Khanewal,southern parts of Bahawalnagar and western parts of Khushab districts. It is also spoken by majority of population of Dera Ismail Khan district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (خیبر پښتونخوا) province, kachi plain of Balochistan, northern parts of Sindh, and cities of Hyderabad and Karachi.

Hindko


Hindko language
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 (ہندکو) is known as the "language of the mountains" and is one of the oldest languages in Pakistan. It is spoken in many dialects in the districts of Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Kohat, Nowshera, Swabi, Haripur, Abbottabad, Mansehra, Attock
Attock
Attock is a city located in the northern border of the Punjab province of Pakistan and the headquarters of Attock District...

, and Murree
Murree
Murree city is a popular hill station and a summer resort, especially for the residents of Rawalpindi/Islamabad, and for the cities of the province of Punjab, Pakistan...

, the lower half of Neelum District
Neelum District
Neelum District is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. Until recently it was part of Muzaffarabad District. It is bound by the Gilgit to the North, with Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipore Districts of Indian-administered Kashmir in India to the South and Southeast,...

 and Muzafarabad District of Kashmir. Hindko
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 is an ancient Indo-Aryan language spoken by Hindkowans
Hindkowans
Hindkowans or known locally as "Chachi's" are an Indo-Aryan ethno-linguistic group native to the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab provinces of Pakistan...

 in Pakistan. It is very similar to northern dialects of Punjabi. The language is spoken in the areas of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (including Hazara), local people of Peshawar Punjab and Azad Kashmir
Azad Kashmir
Azad Jammu and Kashmir or Azad Kashmir for short, is the southernmost political entity within the Pakistani-administered part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir...

 by an estimated 2.2 to 4 million people.{{Citation needed|date=January 2010}} During the pre-Buddhist era in present day Pakistan, the language of the masses was refined by the ancient grammarian Pāṇini, who set the rules of a structurally rigorous language called Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

 which was used principally for scriptures (analogous to Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 in the Western world). Meanwhile, the vernacular language of the masses, Prakrit
Prakrit
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...

 developed into many tongues and dialects which spread over the northern parts of South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. Hindko is believed to be closely related to Prakrit. Due to the geographic isolation of the regions, it has undergone very little grammatical corruption, but has borrowed considerable vocabulary from its neighbours, in particular Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

. It shows close affinity to Punjabi and the Lahnda sub-group of Indo-Aryan tongues and can be sub-divided into a northern and southern dialects.

Kashmiri


Kashmiri
Kashmiri language
Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

 (كأشُر) is an ancient Dardic language spoken in Azad Kashmir
Azad Kashmir
Azad Jammu and Kashmir or Azad Kashmir for short, is the southernmost political entity within the Pakistani-administered part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir...

, Gilgit-Baltistan and Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 provinces of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

. There are over 2 million Kashmiri speakers in Pakistan. Most of the Kashmiris
Kashmiri people
The Kashmiri people are a Dardic linguistic group living in Kashmir Valley in Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir and parts of the Pakistani territory of Azad Kashmir who speak the Kashmiri language...

 in Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 province and Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

 are refugees and their descendents who fled Indian invasion and occupation of Kashmir
Kashmir
Kashmir is the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term Kashmir geographically denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range...

 in 1948.

In 1919 George Abraham Grierson
George Abraham Grierson
Sir George Abraham Grierson OM KCIE was born to a prominent Dublin family in 1851. His father and grandfather, both also named George, were well-known printers and publishers.-Biography:Educated at St...

 wrote that “Kashmiri is the only one of the Dardic languages
Dardic languages
The Dardic languages are a sub-group of the Indo-Aryan languages spoken in northern Pakistan, eastern Afghanistan, and the Indian region of Jammu and Kashmir...

 that has a literature”. Kashmiri literature dates back to over 750 years, this is, more-or-less, the age of many a modern literature including modern English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Kashmiri retains several features of Old Indo-Aryan that have been lost in other Modern Indo-Aryan languages such as Urdu, Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 and Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

.

Brahui


Brahui (براہوی) is of Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 origin despite the fact that a reasonable amount of the language shares lexical similarities to Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 as well as Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 and Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 due to influence of neighboring languages. Though, Brahui has been influenced by these languages, a majority of the literature contains pure Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 words that relate to the languages of South India
South India
South India is the area encompassing India's states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu as well as the union territories of Lakshadweep and Pondicherry, occupying 19.31% of India's area...

. Spoken in southern Pakistan, it may have evolved from the original languages of Indus valley civilizations
Indus Valley Civilization
The Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilization that was located in the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent, consisting of what is now mainly modern-day Pakistan and northwest India...

 at Mehrgarh
Mehrgarh
Mehrgarh , one of the most important Neolithic sites in archaeology, lies on the "Kachi plain" of Balochistan, Pakistan...

, suggesting that the Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 languages were more widespread. It is spoken in central and east central Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

. The Mengal
Mengal
Mengal is a Brahui / Baloch tribe in Balochistan, Pakistan- Demographics :The Mengal tribe is one of the largest Baloch tribe. Mengal people speak Brahui, a Dravidian language that has been heavily influenced by other Iranian languages spoken in the area, especially Balochi...

s are a famous Brahvi tribe. Around 1-1.5% of Pakistani population has Brahui as their first language. It is one of the nine distinguished languages of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

.

The Brahui
Brahui people
The Brahui or Brohi are ethnic Baloch group of about 2.2 million people with the majority found in Kalat, Baluchistan, Pakistan, but they are also found in smaller numbers in neighboring Afghanistan and Iran. The Brahuis are almost entirely Sunni Muslims.-Origins:The ethnonym "Brahui" is a very...

 population of Balochistan
Balochistan (region)
Balochistan or Baluchistan is an arid, mountainous region in the Iranian plateau in Southwest Asia; it includes part of southeastern Iran, western Pakistan, and southwestern Afghanistan. The area is named after the numerous Baloch tribes, Iranian peoples who moved into the area from the west...

 has been taken by some as the linguistic equivalent of a relict
Relict
A relict is a surviving remnant of a natural phenomenon.* In biology a relict is an organism that at an earlier time was abundant in a large area but now occurs at only one or a few small areas....

 population
Population
A population is all the organisms that both belong to the same group or species and live in the same geographical area. The area that is used to define a sexual population is such that inter-breeding is possible between any pair within the area and more probable than cross-breeding with individuals...

, perhaps indicating that Dravidian languages
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

  were formerly much more widespread and were supplanted by the incoming Indo-Aryan languages
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

. According to J. H. Elfenbein, Brahui could have migrated to Balochistan from central India after 1000 CE. He cites the absence of any Avestan
Avestan language
Avestan is an East Iranian language known only from its use as the language of Zoroastrian scripture, i.e. the Avesta, from which it derives its name...

, an older Iranian language, loanwords in Brahui to supports this hypothesis. The main Iranian contributor to Brahui vocabulary, Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, is a western Iranian language like Kurdish, and moved to the area from the west only around 1000 CE.

Shina


Shina
Shina language
Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

 (شینا) (also known as Tshina) is a Dardic language
Dardic languages
The Dardic languages are a sub-group of the Indo-Aryan languages spoken in northern Pakistan, eastern Afghanistan, and the Indian region of Jammu and Kashmir...

 spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 and Dras
Dras
Dras is a town in the Kargil District of Jammu and Kashmir, India. It is often called 'The Gateway to Ladakh'. The town shot into prominence in the summer of 1999 following Pakistani-backed incursions into Jammu and Kashmir...

 in Ladakh
Ladakh
Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

 of regions of Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore
Astore Valley
Astore Valley is now located in Astore District in the autonomous Pakistani regions of Gilgit-Baltistan,previously in the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir. The valley, adjoining the eastern side of mountain Nanga Parbat, is about long, having area of .The entrance of the valley is located...

, Chilas
Chilas
Chilas is a small town located in the Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan on the left side of river Indus. It is part of the Silk Road connected by the Karakoram Highway which links it to Islamabad in the south via Dassu, Besham, Mansehra, Abbottabad and Haripur...

, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit
Gilgit
Gilgit is a city in northern PakistanGilgit may refer to other terms related with the area of the city:* Gilgit River* Gilgit Valley* Gilgit District* Gilgit Agency * Gilgit Airport...

, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan
Baltistan
Baltistan , also known as بلتیول བལིུལ་ in the Balti language, is a region in northern Pakistan which forms Gilgit-Baltistan, bordering the Xinjiang Autonomous Region of China. In addition, a part of Baltistan also falls into Jammu and Kashmir of India. It is situated in the Karakoram mountains...

 and Kohistan. It is also spoken in Gurez
Gurez
Gurez or Gurais, also pronounced Gorai in the local Shina language, is a valley located in the high Himalayas , about from Bandipore and from Srinagar in northern Jammu and Kashmir, India. At about above sea level, the valley is surrounded by snow capped mountains. It has diverse fauna and...

, Drass, Kargil
Kargil District
Kargil is a district of Ladakh, Kashmir, India. Kargil lies near the Line of Control facing Pakistan-occupied Kashmir's Baltistan to the west, and Kashmir valley to the south. Zanskar is part of Kargil district along with Suru, Wakha and Dras valleys...

, Karkit Badgam and Ladakh
Ladakh
Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

 valleys of Kashmir. There were 321,000 speakers of Gilgiti Shina as of 1981, and an estimated total of speakers of all dialects of 550,000. Many Shina speakers are also found in Pakistan's major urban centres of Islamabad
Islamabad
Islamabad is the capital of Pakistan and the tenth largest city in the country. Located within the Islamabad Capital Territory , the population of the city has grown from 100,000 in 1951 to 1.7 million in 2011...

, Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi , locally known as Pindi, is a city in the Pothohar region of Pakistan near Pakistan's capital city of Islamabad, in the province of Punjab. Rawalpindi is the fourth largest city in Pakistan after Karachi, Lahore and Faisalabad...

, Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Abbottabad
Abbottabad
Abbottabad is a city located in the Hazara region of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in Pakistan. The city is situated in the Orash Valley, northeast of the capital Islamabad and east of Peshawar at an altitude of and is the capital of the Abbottabad District...

, Hyderabad
Hyderabad, Sindh
is the second largest city in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is the seventh largest city in the country. The city was founded in 1768 by Mian Ghulam Shah Kalhoro upon the ruins of a Mauryan fishing village along the bank of the Indus known as Neroon Kot...

 and Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

.

Persian (cultural language)


Preferred language amongst the educated Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 elite, and was the official and cultural language of the Mughal Empire
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 and other Turkic Empires and various Muslim princely states based in what is now Pakistan. Persian was officially abolished from the region with the arrival of the British to the province of Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 in 1843 and Punjab
Punjab region
The Punjab , also spelled Panjab |water]]s"), is a geographical region straddling the border between Pakistan and India which includes Punjab province in Pakistan and the states of the Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Chandigarh and some northern parts of the National Capital Territory of Delhi...

 in 1849 to minimize the influence of Persia and Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 on the regions that now make up Pakistan and integrate these regions with the rest of South Asia under a common Urdu language. It is still spoken and understood by the educated elite as a literary and prestigious language.

Many Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 speaking refugees, Dari
Dari (Persian)
Dari or Fārsī-ye Darī in historical terms refers to the Persian court language of the Sassanids. In contemporary usage, the term refers to the dialects of modern Persian language spoken in Afghanistan, and hence known as Afghan Persian in some Western sources. It is the term officially recognized...

 and Tajiks, from Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently. There are also Tajiks refugees from Tajikistan
Tajikistan
Tajikistan , officially the Republic of Tajikistan , is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia. Afghanistan borders it to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east....

 that have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

.

Arabic (religious language)


Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 (عربي) is considered to be religious language of Muslims. The Quran, Sunnah
Sunnah
The word literally means a clear, well trodden, busy and plain surfaced road. In the discussion of the sources of religion, Sunnah denotes the practice of Prophet Muhammad that he taught and practically instituted as a teacher of the sharī‘ah and the best exemplar...

, Hadith
Hadith
The term Hadīth is used to denote a saying or an act or tacit approval or criticism ascribed either validly or invalidly to the Islamic prophet Muhammad....

 and Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 theology is taught in Arabic with Urdu translation. The large numbers of Pakistanis living in the Persian Gulf
Persian Gulf
The Persian Gulf, in Southwest Asia, is an extension of the Indian Ocean located between Iran and the Arabian Peninsula.The Persian Gulf was the focus of the 1980–1988 Iran-Iraq War, in which each side attacked the other's oil tankers...

 region and in other Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

ern countries has further increased the number of people who can speak Arabic in Pakistan. Arabic is taught as a religious language in mosque
Mosque
A mosque is a place of worship for followers of Islam. The word is likely to have entered the English language through French , from Portuguese , from Spanish , and from Berber , ultimately originating in — . The Arabic word masjid literally means a place of prostration...

s, school
School
A school is an institution designed for the teaching of students under the direction of teachers. Most countries have systems of formal education, which is commonly compulsory. In these systems, students progress through a series of schools...

s, college
College
A college is an educational institution or a constituent part of an educational institution. Usage varies in English-speaking nations...

s, universities
University
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

 and madrassahs
Madrasah
Madrasah is the Arabic word for any type of educational institution, whether secular or religious...

. Nearly all of Pakistan's Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 population has had some form of education in the reading, writing and pronunciation of the Arabic language
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

.

Many Arabs who took part in Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 war have now settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently with their families. Millions of Pakistanis that have worked in Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

 also speak Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

.

Turkic languages (cultural language)


Turkic (ترک) languages were used by the ruling Turco-Mongols
Turkic peoples
The Turkic peoples are peoples residing in northern, central and western Asia, southern Siberia and northwestern China and parts of eastern Europe. They speak languages belonging to the Turkic language family. They share, to varying degrees, certain cultural traits and historical backgrounds...

 (or Mughals
Mughal (tribe)
The term Mughal is simply a Turkic word and many groups in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh use the term Mughal to describe themselves...

) and earlier Sultans
Delhi Sultanate
The Delhi Sultanate is a term used to cover five short-lived, Delhi based kingdoms or sultanates, of Turkic origin in medieval India. The sultanates ruled from Delhi between 1206 and 1526, when the last was replaced by the Mughal dynasty...

 of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 many of whom have settled in Pakistan. There are pockets of Turkic speakers found throughout the country, notably in the valleys in the countries northern regions which lie adjacent to Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

, western Pakistani region of Waziristan
Waziristan
Waziristan is a mountainous region near the Northwest of Pakistan, bordering Afghanistan and covering some 11,585 km² . The area is entirely populated by ethnic Pashtuns . The language spoken in the valley is Pashto/Pakhto...

 principally around Kanigoram where the Burki tribe
Burki
The Burki are a Pushtun tribe of South Waziristan, Pakistan, whose homeland is Kaniguram...

 dwells and in Pakistan's urban centres of Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

, Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

 and Islamabad
Islamabad
Islamabad is the capital of Pakistan and the tenth largest city in the country. Located within the Islamabad Capital Territory , the population of the city has grown from 100,000 in 1951 to 1.7 million in 2011...

. The autobiography of Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Babur
Babur
Babur was a Muslim conqueror from Central Asia who, following a series of setbacks, finally succeeded in laying the basis for the Mughal dynasty of South Asia. He was a direct descendant of Timur through his father, and a descendant also of Genghis Khan through his mother...

, Tuzk Babari
Baburnama
Bāburnāma is the name given to the memoirs of Ẓahīr ud-Dīn Muḥammad Bābur , founder of the Mughal Empire and a great-great-great-grandson of Timur...

 was also written in Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

. After returning from exile in Safavid
Safavid dynasty
The Safavid dynasty was one of the most significant ruling dynasties of Iran. They ruled one of the greatest Persian empires since the Muslim conquest of Persia and established the Twelver school of Shi'a Islam as the official religion of their empire, marking one of the most important turning...

 Persia in 1555, Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Humayun
Humayun
Nasir ud-din Muhammad Humayun was the second Mughal Emperor who ruled present day Afghanistan, Pakistan, and parts of northern India from 1530–1540 and again from 1555–1556. Like his father, Babur, he lost his kingdom early, but with Persian aid, he eventually regained an even larger one...

 introduced Persian language
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and culture in court and government. The Chaghatai language, in which Babur had written his memoirs, disappeared almost entirely from the culture of the courtly elite, and Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Akbar could not speak it. Later in life, Humayun himself is said to have spoken in Persian verse more often than not.

Many Turkic speaking refugees, Uzbeks and Turkmens
Turkmen people
The Turkmen are a Turkic people located primarily in the Central Asian states of Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, and northeastern Iran. They speak the Turkmen language, which is classified as a part of the Western Oghuz branch of the Turkic languages family together with Turkish, Azerbaijani, Qashqai,...

, from Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently. They are also Uzbeks and Turkmen refugees that have moved from Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan , officially the Republic of Uzbekistan is a doubly landlocked country in Central Asia and one of the six independent Turkic states. It shares borders with Kazakhstan to the west and to the north, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan to the east, and Afghanistan and Turkmenistan to the south....

 and Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan , formerly also known as Turkmenia is one of the Turkic states in Central Asia. Until 1991, it was a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic . Turkmenistan is one of the six independent Turkic states...

 and settled in Pakistan. Turkey
Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

 also provides scolarships to large number of Pakistani students to study in Turkish universities. President
President of Pakistan
The President of Pakistan is the head of state, as well as figurehead, of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Recently passed an XVIII Amendment , Pakistan has a parliamentary democratic system of government. According to the Constitution, the President is chosen by the Electoral College to serve a...

 Pervez Musharraf
Pervez Musharraf
Pervez Musharraf , is a retired four-star general who served as the 13th Chief of Army Staff and tenth President of Pakistan as well as tenth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee. Musharraf headed and led an administrative military government from October 1999 till August 2007. He ruled...

 studied in Turkey and spoke Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

 fluently.

The word Urdu is of Turkic origin, as Urdu was originally called Zaban-e-Ordu or language of the Army, ordu meaning army in Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

.

English (official language)


English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 is the official language
Official language
An official language is a language that is given a special legal status in a particular country, state, or other jurisdiction. Typically a nation's official language will be the one used in that nation's courts, parliament and administration. However, official status can also be used to give a...

, being widely used within the government
Government of Pakistan
The Government of Pakistan is a federal parliamentary system, with an indirectly-elected President as the Head of State and Commander in Chief of the Pakistani Armed Forces, and an indirectly-elected Prime Minister as the Head of Government. The President’s appointment and term are...

, by the civil service and the officer ranks of the military. Pakistan's Constitution
Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is the supreme law of Pakistan. Known as the Constitution of 1973, it was drafted by the government of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and, following additions by the opposition parties, was approved by the legislative assembly on April 10, 1973...

 and laws are written in English. Nearly all schools, colleges and universities, use English as the medium of instruction
Medium of instruction
Medium of instruction is a language used in teaching. It may or may not be the official language of the country or territory. Where the first language of students is different from the official language, it may be used as the medium of instruction for part or all of schooling. Bilingual or...

. Amongst the more educated social circles of Pakistan, English is seen as the language of upward mobility and its use is becoming more prevalent in upper social circles often spoken alongside native Pakistani languages. Among countries that use English as an official language, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 is the third most populous in the world.

Minor languages


Other languages spoken by linguistic minorities include Aer, Badeshi
Badeshi language
Badeshi is an Indo-Iranian language spoken in the upper reaches of the Bishigram Valley , east of Madyan, Swat, Kohistan in Northern Areas of Pakistan....

, Bagri
Bagri language
Bagri is a dialect of Rajasthani language of the Indo-Aryan family. It is spoken by about five million speakers in Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar districts of Rajasthan, Sirsa and Hissar districts of Haryana, Firozepur and Muktsar districts of Punjab of India and Bahawalpur and Bahawalnagar areas...

, Balti, Bateri, Bhaya, Brahui, Burushaski, Chilisso, Chitrali
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Dameli
Dameli
Dameli is a language spoken by approximately 5,000 people in the Domel Valley, in the Chitral District of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan....

, Dehwari, Dhatki
Dhatki language
Dhatki, also known as Dhati or Thari, is one of the Rajasthani languages of the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European language family. It is most closely related to Marwari.-Speakers:...

, Domaaki
Domaaki language
Domaakí – also known as Dumaki or Domaá – is a language spoken by a few hundred people living in the Northern Areas of Pakistan.It belongs to the Indo-European language family, and can be affiliated to the Dardic group of the Indo-Iranian branch....

, Farsi (Dari)
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Gawar-Bati, Ghera, Goaria, Gowro, Gujarati
Gujarati language
Gujarati is an Indo-Aryan language, and part of the greater Indo-European language family. It is derived from a language called Old Gujarati which is the ancestor language of the modern Gujarati and Rajasthani languages...

, Gujari, Gurgula, Hazaragi, Indo-Pakistani Sign Language, Jadgali, Jandavra, Kabutra, Khowar
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Kachchi (Kutchi)
Kutchi language
Kachhi Kachhi Kachhi (also spelt Cutchi, Kutchhi or Kachchhi, is an Indo-Aryan Language spoken in the Kutch region of the Indian state of Gujarat as well as in Sindh.- Closely related languages :...

, Kalami
Kalami language
Kalami is a Dardic language spoken in northern Pakistan.The language is also known as Gawri or Garwi , but this name is considered pejorative by some speakers.-Classification:...

, Kalasha
Kalasha
Kalasha, also spelled as Kalash and kalasa , is a metal pot with a large base and small mouth, large enough to hold a coconut. Sometimes "Kalasha" also refers to such a pot filled with water and topped with a coronet of mango leaves and a coconut...

, Kalkoti, Kamviri, Kati, Khetrani
Khetrani language
Khetrani or Khetranki is an Indo Indo-European language. It is spoken in north east Balochistan province in Pakistan. The population is speaking this language is 4,000....

, Khowar
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Indus Kohistani, Koli (three varieties), Lasi, Loarki, Marwari
Marwari language
The Marwari language , also variously Marvari, Marwadi, Marvadi), is spoken in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Marwari is also found in the neighboring state of Gujarat and Haryana and in Eastern Pakistan...

, Memoni
Memoni language
The Memoni language is the language of Memons historically associated with Kathiawar, in West India, a Memon subgroup. Many Memons have settled in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan since the independence in 1947...

, Od, Ormuri
Ormuri language
Ormuri is a member of the Southeastern branch of the Eastern Iranian languages, but attempts to classify Ormuri in the Northwestern Iranian languages have also been made. It is spoken in the city of Kaniguram in South Waziristan, Pakistan by the Burki people. It may also be spoken by a few people...

, Pahari-Potwari, Palula (Phalura), Sansi, Savi, Shina (two varieties)
Shina language
Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

, Torwali
Torwali language
The Torwali , or Turvali, language is spoken in Kohistan and Swat districts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan. The language is indigenous to the Torwali people who live in scattered hamlets in the mountainous upper reaches of the Swat valley, above the Pashto-speaking town of Madyan up...

, Ushojo, Vaghri, Wakhi
Wakhi language
Wakhi is an Indo-European language in the branch of Eastern Iranian language family and is intimately related to other Southeastern Iranian languages in the Pamir languages group.-Classification and Distribution:...

, Waneci, and Yidgha. Some of these have a few hundred speakers, while others have tens of thousands of speakers. A few are highly endangered languages that may soon have no speakers at all.

There are around 75 to 80 known languages of Pakistan although, in practice, there are primarily seven major languages in Pakistan spoken by 95% of the population: Punjabi, Pashto, Sindhi, Saraiki, Urdu, Persian, and Balochi. The official language
Official language
An official language is a language that is given a special legal status in a particular country, state, or other jurisdiction. Typically a nation's official language will be the one used in that nation's courts, parliament and administration. However, official status can also be used to give a...

 is English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 and the national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 is Urdu, the census indicates that around 8% of the population speak Urdu as their first language
First language
A first language is the language a person has learned from birth or within the critical period, or that a person speaks the best and so is often the basis for sociolinguistic identity...

. However, due to rapid urbanization and modernization, the use of Urdu as a primary language is increasing, especially amongst the growing urbanized middle class of Pakistan. Around 44% speak Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

, 15.5% speak Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, 15.5% speak Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

, 10.5% Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, 7.5% Urdu, 3.5% Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 and 3.5% other languages (Hindko, Brahui etc.) as their first language. Most Pakistanis, however, speak or understand at least two to three languages and almost all Pakistanis speak or understand the national language, Urdu.

The most prevalent native languages appear in bold below, with the percentage of the population speaking them as their first language rounded to the nearest percentage point:
{{columns|colwidth=10em
|col1 =
  • Aer
    Aer language
    Aer is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by approximately 300 people in Sindh, Pakistan.-External links:*...

  • Badeshi
    Badeshi language
    Badeshi is an Indo-Iranian language spoken in the upper reaches of the Bishigram Valley , east of Madyan, Swat, Kohistan in Northern Areas of Pakistan....

  • Bagri
    Bagri language
    Bagri is a dialect of Rajasthani language of the Indo-Aryan family. It is spoken by about five million speakers in Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar districts of Rajasthan, Sirsa and Hissar districts of Haryana, Firozepur and Muktsar districts of Punjab of India and Bahawalpur and Bahawalnagar areas...

  • Balochi
    Balochi language
    Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

     (4%)
  • Balti
    Balti language
    Balti is a language spoken in Baltistan, in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and adjoining parts of Ladakh. Baltistan, before 1948, was part of Ladakh province. The Balti language is a dialect of the Ladakhi language, a form of Tibetan. It is mutually intelligible with Ladakhi proper and Burig...

  • Bateri
  • Bhadrawahi
  • Brahui
  • Brokskat
  • Burig
  • Burushaski
    Burushaski language
    The Burushaski or Burushko language , is a language isolate . It is spoken by some 87,000 Burusho people in the Hunza, Nagar, Yasin, and Ishkoman valleys, and some parts of the Gilgit valley, in Gilgit–Baltistan in Pakistan and by about 300 Burusho people in Srinagar in Jammu and Kashmir, India...

  • Chambeali
  • Changthang
  • Chilliso
  • Chitrali
    Khowar language
    For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...


|col2 =
  • Dari
    Dari (Eastern Persian)
    Dari or Fārsī-ye Darī in historical terms refers to the Persian court language of the Sassanids. In contemporary usage, the term refers to the dialects of modern Persian language spoken in Afghanistan, and hence known as Afghan Persian in some Western sources. It is the term officially recognized...

  • Dameli
  • Dogri
    Dogri language
    Dogri is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by about five million people in Pakistan and India, chiefly in the Jammu region of Jammu and Kashmir, but also in northern Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, other parts of Jammu and Kashmir, and elsewhere. Dogri speakers are called Dogras, and the Dogri-speaking...

  • Dehawri
  • Dhakti
  • Domaaki
    Domaaki language
    Domaakí – also known as Dumaki or Domaá – is a language spoken by a few hundred people living in the Northern Areas of Pakistan.It belongs to the Indo-European language family, and can be affiliated to the Dardic group of the Indo-Iranian branch....

  • Gawar-Bati
    Gawar-Bati language
    Gawar-Bati is known in Chitral as Aranduyiwar, because it is spoken in Village Arandu, which is the last village in the bottom of Chitral and is across the Kunar River from Berkot in Afghanistan. Chitral keeps a military base in Arandu to guard against an attack by Afghanistan.There are 9,000...

  • Ghera
  • Goaria
    Goaria language
    Goaria is a Marwari Rajasthani language spoken by some 25,000 people in Sindh Province, Pakistan. The people are predominantly Hindu, and use the Hindi language for worship.-External links:* at the Ethnologue...

  • Gowro
  • Gujarati
    Gujarati language
    Gujarati is an Indo-Aryan language, and part of the greater Indo-European language family. It is derived from a language called Old Gujarati which is the ancestor language of the modern Gujarati and Rajasthani languages...

  • Gojri (Gujari)
  • Gurgula
  • Hazaragi
    Hazaragi language
    Hazaragi is a dialect of the Persian language spoken by the Hazara people, most of all in an area known as the Hazarajat.- General :The primary differences between Standard Persian and Hazaragi are the accent and Hazaragi's greater array of Turkic and Mongolian loanwords...

  • Hindko
    Hindko language
    Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

  • IPSL

|col3 =
  • Jadgali
  • Jandavra
  • Kabutra
  • Kachchi
  • Kalami
    Kalami language
    Kalami is a Dardic language spoken in northern Pakistan.The language is also known as Gawri or Garwi , but this name is considered pejorative by some speakers.-Classification:...

  • Kalasha-mun
  • Kalkoti
  • Kamviri
  • Kashmiri
    Kashmiri language
    Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

  • Kati
  • Khetrani
    Khetrani language
    Khetrani or Khetranki is an Indo Indo-European language. It is spoken in north east Balochistan province in Pakistan. The population is speaking this language is 4,000....

  • Khojki
    Khojki
    Khojki or Khojiki was a script used almost exclusively by the Khoja community of parts of South Asia such as Sindh. It was employed primarily to record Muslim Shia Ismaili religious literature, as well as literature for a few secret Shia Muslim sects....

  • Khowar
    Khowar language
    For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

  • Kohistani Indus
    Kohistani language
    Kohistani is a Dardic language spoken in Kohistan District, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, Pakistan. Dardic languages are a branch of the Indo-Iranian language group, which in turn is branch of the Indo-European language family...

  • Koli-Kachi
  • Koli-Parkari
  • Koli-Wadiyara

|col4 =
  • Ladakhi
    Ladakhi language
    The Ladakhi language , now also called Bhoti, and by linguists more generally called Western Archaic Tibetan when the Balti and Burig or Purig or Purki dialects are included, is the predominant language in the Ladakh region of the Jammu and Kashmir state of India, and is also spoken in Baltistan...

  • Lasi
  • Loarki
    Loarki language
    Loarki is an Indo-Aryan language, classified as a Rajasthani language, and is spoken by 20,000 nomadic people in rural Sindh of Pakistan....

  • Makran
    Makran
    The present day Makran is a semi-desert coastal strip in the south of Sindh, Balochistan, in Iran and Pakistan, along the coast of the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman. The present day Makran derived its name from Maka, a satrap of Achaemenid Empire....

    i
  • Marwari
    Marwari language
    The Marwari language , also variously Marvari, Marwadi, Marvadi), is spoken in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Marwari is also found in the neighboring state of Gujarat and Haryana and in Eastern Pakistan...

  • Memoni
    Memoni language
    The Memoni language is the language of Memons historically associated with Kathiawar, in West India, a Memon subgroup. Many Memons have settled in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan since the independence in 1947...

  • Multani
    Multani language
    Multani is spoken in southern Punjab, Pakistan. This dialect of Punjabi is mainly spoken in Multan_District, Muzaffargarh_District and adjacent ares like some parts of District Khanewal. It is mentioned in ancient documents....

  • Od
  • Ormuri
    Ormuri language
    Ormuri is a member of the Southeastern branch of the Eastern Iranian languages, but attempts to classify Ormuri in the Northwestern Iranian languages have also been made. It is spoken in the city of Kaniguram in South Waziristan, Pakistan by the Burki people. It may also be spoken by a few people...

  • Pahari
    Pahari languages
    The Pahari languages are a geographic group of Indic languages spoken in the lower ranges of the Himalayas, from Nepal in the east to the Indian states of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir in the west.-Classification:The Pahari languages fall into three groups:*Eastern, consisting...

    -Pothohari
    Pothohari language
    Potwari , also known as Potohari ), is a rich north Indian sub-continent dialect spoken in the Pothohar Plateau around Rawalpindi, Kahuta, Gujar Khan, Jehlum, up to Gujrat in the south and Chakwal in the West, Hazara in the north, Azad Kashmir in the east and also by Sikhs from the Pothohar...

  • Farsi
    Persian language
    Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

  • Pashto
    Pashto language
    Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

     (15%)
  • Punjabi
    Punjabi language
    Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

     (44%)
  • Palula
  • Purik

|col5 =
  • Sansi
  • Seraiki
    Saraiki language
    Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

     (10%)
  • Savi
  • Shina
    Shina language
    Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

  • Shina-Kohistani
  • Sindhi
    Sindhi language
    Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

     (14%)
  • Sindhi-Bhil
  • Torwali
    Torwali language
    The Torwali , or Turvali, language is spoken in Kohistan and Swat districts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan. The language is indigenous to the Torwali people who live in scattered hamlets in the mountainous upper reaches of the Swat valley, above the Pashto-speaking town of Madyan up...

  • Urdu (8%)
  • Uyghur
    Uyghur language
    Uyghur , formerly known as Eastern Turk, is a Turkic language with 8 to 11 million speakers, spoken primarily by the Uyghur people in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of Western China. Significant communities of Uyghur-speakers are located in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, and various other...

  • Ushojo
  • Vagri
  • Wakhi
    Wakhi language
    Wakhi is an Indo-European language in the branch of Eastern Iranian language family and is intimately related to other Southeastern Iranian languages in the Pamir languages group.-Classification and Distribution:...

  • Waneci
  • Yidgha
  • Zangskari

}}

Indo-European


Most of the languages of Pakistan belong to the Indo-Iranian branch
Indo-Iranian languages
The Indo-Iranian language group constitutes the easternmost extant branch of the Indo-European family of languages. It consists of three language groups: the Indo-Aryan, Iranian and Nuristani...

 of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

. They are divided between two major groups of that branch: Indo-Aryan
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

 (the majority, including Urdu, Punjabi, Sindhi, Persian, Hindko, and Saraiki, among others), and Iranian
Iranian languages
The Iranian languages form a subfamily of the Indo-Iranian languages which in turn is a subgroup of Indo-European language family. They have been and are spoken by Iranian peoples....

 (including Pashto, Balochi, and Khowar, among others).

Indo-Aryan and Iranian languages are further divided into groups of languages, although the reasons for the divisions are not always well-documented. Indo-Aryan languages all belong to the same language genus Indo-Aryan, and Iranian languages all belong to a different language genus (Iranian).

Some of the important languages in the Indo-Aryan group are dialect continuum
Dialect continuum
A dialect continuum, or dialect area, was defined by Leonard Bloomfield as a range of dialects spoken across some geographical area that differ only slightly between neighboring areas, but as one travels in any direction, these differences accumulate such that speakers from opposite ends of the...

s. One of these is Lahnda
Lahnda languages
The Lahnda or Western Punjabi Languages are an Indo-Aryan languages dialect continuum that are Mutually intelligible and are spoken in South Asia.According to the Ethnologue they include:...

, and includes Western Panjabi (but not the Panjabi of India and Pakistan), Northern Hindko, Southern Hindko, Khetrani, Saraiki, and Pahari-Potwari, plus two more languages outside of Pakistan. The other is Marwari, and includes Marwari of Pakistan and several languages of India (Dhundari, Marwari, Merwari, Mewari, and Shekhawati). A third is Rajasthani
Rajasthani language
Rajasthani Rajasthani Rajasthani (Devanagari: , Perso-Arabic: is a language of the Indo-Aryan languages family. It is spoken by 50 million people in Rajasthan and other states of India and in some areas of Pakistan. The number of speakers may be up to 80 million worldwide...

, and consists of Bagri
Bagri language
Bagri is a dialect of Rajasthani language of the Indo-Aryan family. It is spoken by about five million speakers in Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar districts of Rajasthan, Sirsa and Hissar districts of Haryana, Firozepur and Muktsar districts of Punjab of India and Bahawalpur and Bahawalnagar areas...

, Gujari in Pakistan and several others in India: Gade Lohar, Harauti (Hadothi), Malvi, and Wagdi.

There are several dialects continuums in the Iranian group as well: Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, which includes Eastern, Western and Southern Balochi; Pashtun, and includes Northern, Central, and Southern Pashto; and Persian, which includes Western Farsi in Iran and Eastern Farsi in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Non-Indo-European


The following four languages of Pakistan are not part of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

:
  • Brahui (spoken in central Balochistan province) is a Dravidian language
    Dravidian languages
    The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

    . Its vocabulary has been significantly influenced by Balochi. It has been suggested, with evidence, to be linked to the ancient Indus valley civilization
    Indus Valley Civilization
    The Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilization that was located in the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent, consisting of what is now mainly modern-day Pakistan and northwest India...

    , but oral history and linguistic evidence indicates that it is a fairly recent immigrant to the area from southeastern India
  • The Balti dialect of Ladakhi
    Ladakhi language
    The Ladakhi language , now also called Bhoti, and by linguists more generally called Western Archaic Tibetan when the Balti and Burig or Purig or Purki dialects are included, is the predominant language in the Ladakh region of the Jammu and Kashmir state of India, and is also spoken in Baltistan...

     (spoken in an area of southern Gilgit-Baltistan) is a Tibetan language of the Tibeto-Burman language family
  • Burushaski (spoken in Hunza, Nagar, Yasin, and Ishkoman valleys in Gilgit-Baltistan) is a language isolate
    Language isolate
    A language isolate, in the absolute sense, is a natural language with no demonstrable genealogical relationship with other languages; that is, one that has not been demonstrated to descend from an ancestor common with any other language. They are in effect language families consisting of a single...

     with no written script

Writing systems


{{Main|Nasta'liq script|Urdu alphabet}}


All languages of Pakistan are written in Nastaʿlīq, a modified Perso-Arabic script. The Mughal Empire
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 used Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 as the court language
Language
Language may refer either to the specifically human capacity for acquiring and using complex systems of communication, or to a specific instance of such a system of complex communication...

 during their rule over South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. During this time, {{transl|Arab|Nastaʿlīq}} came into widespread use in South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. The influence remains to this day. In Pakistan, almost everything in Urdu is written in the script, concentrating the greater part of Nastaʿlīq usage in the world.

After the Islamic conquest of Persia
Islamic conquest of Persia
The Muslim conquest of Persia led to the end of the Sassanid Empire in 644, the fall of Sassanid dynasty in 651 and the eventual decline of the Zoroastrian religion in Persia...

, Iranians adopted the Perso-Arabic script and the art of Persian calligraphy
Persian calligraphy
Persian Calligraphy is the calligraphy of Persian writing system. It has been one of the most revered arts throughout Persian history. It is considered to be one of the most eye catching and fascinating manifestations of Persian culture.-History:...

 flourished in Iran alongside other Islamic countries. Apparently, Mir Ali Tabrizi
Mir Ali Tabrizi
Mir Ali Tabrizi also known as Mir Ali Heravi is distinguished Persian. The precision of tradition still allows for creativity, and there is a telling story of a famous Persian calligrapher, Mir Ali Tabrizi Mir Ali Tabrizi also known as Mir Ali Heravi (b. in Herat Afghanistan and d. in Tabriz in...

 (14th century) developed {{transl|Arab|Nastaʿlīq}} by combining two existing scripts of
{{Languages of
|country = Pakistan
|national =
Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...


|official = Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

, English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...


|main = Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 (44.15%), Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 (15.42%), Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 (14.1%), Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

(12.1%), Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

 (7.57%) (understood by 90%), Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 (3.57%)
|regional = Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

; Hindko
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

; Kashmiri
Kashmiri language
Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

;
|minor = Burushaski; Kalash; Khowar; Shina
Shina
Shina can refer to:* Shina , a Japanese term for mainland China* Shina , Shina Gado, a character from the Bloody Roar video game series* Shina people, Dardic people of Pakistani Kashmir* Shin of Hindukush...

; Balti
Balti language
Balti is a language spoken in Baltistan, in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and adjoining parts of Ladakh. Baltistan, before 1948, was part of Ladakh province. The Balti language is a dialect of the Ladakhi language, a form of Tibetan. It is mutually intelligible with Ladakhi proper and Burig...

; Brahui; Farsi
Dari (Persian)
Dari or Fārsī-ye Darī in historical terms refers to the Persian court language of the Sassanids. In contemporary usage, the term refers to the dialects of modern Persian language spoken in Afghanistan, and hence known as Afghan Persian in some Western sources. It is the term officially recognized...


|other = Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

; Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

; Bengali
Bengali language
Bengali or Bangla is an eastern Indo-Aryan language. It is native to the region of eastern South Asia known as Bengal, which comprises present day Bangladesh, the Indian state of West Bengal, and parts of the Indian states of Tripura and Assam. It is written with the Bengali script...

; Gujarati
Gujarati language
Gujarati is an Indo-Aryan language, and part of the greater Indo-European language family. It is derived from a language called Old Gujarati which is the ancestor language of the modern Gujarati and Rajasthani languages...

; Memoni
Memoni language
The Memoni language is the language of Memons historically associated with Kathiawar, in West India, a Memon subgroup. Many Memons have settled in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan since the independence in 1947...


|foreign =
|sign = Indo-Pakistani Sign Language
|keyboard = Urdu keyboard
Urdu keyboard
The Urdu keyboardاردو is any keyboard layout for an Urdu computer and typewriter keyboards. Since the first Urdu typewriter was made available in 1911, the layout has gone through various phases of evolution. With time, the variety of layouts introduced in the 1950s for mechanised compositions have...


|keyboard image =
}}
Languages of Pakistan include two official languages: Urdu, which is also Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

's national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 and lingua franca
Lingua franca
A lingua franca is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.-Characteristics:"Lingua franca" is a functionally defined term, independent of the linguistic...

, and English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Additionally, Pakistan has four major provincial languages: Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

, Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

, Farsi(Persian) and Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, as well as three major regional languages: Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, Hindko
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 and Kashmiri
Kashmiri language
Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

.

Most of the languages of Pakistan belong to the Indo-Aryan languages of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

.

Statistics

Rank Language 1998 census 1982 census 1961 census 1951 census
1 Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

44.15% 48.17% 66.39% 67.08%
2 Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

15.42% 13.15% 8.47% 8.16%
3 Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

14.1% 11.7% 12.59% 12.85%
4 Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

*
10.53% 9.54% --  -- 
5 Urdu 7.57% 7.60% 7.57% 7.05%
6 Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

3.57% 3.02% 2.49% 3.04%

  • Seraiki
    Saraiki language
    Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

     was included with Punjabi
    Punjabi language
    Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

     in 1951 and 1961 census


Following are the major languages spoken in Pakistan. The percentage of Pakistanis who are native speakers of that language is also given.
Numbers of speakers of larger languages
Language 2008 estimate 1998 census Areas of Predominance
1 Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

76,367,360 44.17% 58,433,431 44.15% Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

2 Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

26,692,890 15.44% 20,408,621 15.42% Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
3 Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

24,410,910 14.12% 18,661,571 14.10% Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

4 Seraiki 18,019,610 10.42% 13,936,594 10.53% Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

5 Urdu 13,120,540 7.59% 10,019,576 7.57% Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

6 Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

6,204,540 3.59% 4,724,871 3.57% Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...


National language: Urdu


Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

 ({{Nastaliq|اردو}}) is the national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 ({{Nastaliq|قومی زبان}}), lingua franca and one of two official languages of Pakistan (the other being English). Although only about 8% of Pakistanis speak it as their first language, it is spoken as a second and often third language by nearly all Pakistanis. Its introduction as the lingua franca
Lingua franca
A lingua franca is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.-Characteristics:"Lingua franca" is a functionally defined term, independent of the linguistic...

 was encouraged by the British
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

 upon the capitulation and annexation of Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 (1843) and Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 (1849) with the subsequent ban on the use of Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

. The decision to make the language change was to institute a universal language throughout the then British Raj
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

 in South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

 as well as minimize the influence of Persia, Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

, Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 and Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

 had on this transitional region. Urdu is a relatively new language in the contemporary sense but has undergone considerable modifications and development borrowing heavily on the traditions of older languages like Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

, Turkish
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

 and local South Asian languages
Languages of South Asia
South Asia is home to several hundred languages. Most languages spoken in India belong either to the Indo-European , the Dravidian , the Austroasiatic , or the Tibeto-Burman South Asia is home to several hundred languages. Most languages spoken in India belong either to the Indo-European (ca....

 all of which can be found in its vocabulary. It began as a standardized register of Hindi and in its spoken form. It is widely used, both formally and informally, for personal letters as well as public literature, in the literary sphere and in the popular media. It is a required subject of study in all primary and secondary schools. It is the first language of most Muhajirs (Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 refugees that fled from genocide
Genocide
Genocide is defined as "the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group", though what constitutes enough of a "part" to qualify as genocide has been subject to much debate by legal scholars...

 and pograms from different parts of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 after independence of Pakistan in 1947) that form nearly 8% of Pakistan's population and is an acquired language. As Pakistan's national language, Urdu has been promoted to promote national unity. It is written with a modified form of the Perso-Arabic alphabet, usually in Nastaliq script, and its basic Hindustani vocabulary has been enriched by words from Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

, Turkic languages
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

 and English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Urdu has drawn inspiration from Persian literature
Persian literature
Persian literature spans two-and-a-half millennia, though much of the pre-Islamic material has been lost. Its sources have been within historical Persia including present-day Iran as well as regions of Central Asia where the Persian language has historically been the national language...

 and has now an enormous stock of words from that language. In recent years, the Urdu spoken in Pakistan has gradually been influenced by many of the native languages including Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 and Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 in terms of intonation, as well as incorporating terminology from those languages. As such the language is constantly developing and has acquired a particularly "Pakistani" flavour to it distinguishing itself from that spoken in ancient times and in India. The first poetry in Urdu was by the Persian poet Amir Khusro
Amir Khusro
Ab'ul Hasan Yamīn ud-Dīn Khusrow , better known as Amīr Khusrow Dehlawī , was an Indian musician, scholar and poet. He was an iconic figure in the cultural history of the Indian subcontinent...

 (1253–1325) and the first Urdu book "Woh Majlis" was written in 1728; the first time the word "Urdu" was used was by Sirajuddin Ali Khan Arzoo in 1741. The Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 Emperor
Emperor
An emperor is a monarch, usually the sovereign ruler of an empire or another type of imperial realm. Empress, the female equivalent, may indicate an emperor's wife or a woman who rules in her own right...

 Aurangzeb Alamgir
Aurangzeb
Abul Muzaffar Muhy-ud-Din Muhammad Aurangzeb Alamgir , more commonly known as Aurangzeb or by his chosen imperial title Alamgir , was the sixth Mughal Emperor of India, whose reign lasted from 1658 until his death in 1707.Badshah Aurangzeb, having ruled most of the Indian subcontinent for nearly...

 (1658-1707) spoke Urdu (or Hindustani
Hindustani language
Hindi-Urdu is an Indo-Aryan language and the lingua franca of North India and Pakistan. It is also known as Hindustani , and historically, as Hindavi or Rekhta...

) fluently as did his descendants while his ancestors mostly spoke Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and Turkish.

Punjabi



Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 (پنجابی) is spoken as a first language by more than 44% of Pakistanis, mostly in Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 as well as by a large number of people in Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

. However, Punjabi does not have any official status in Pakistan. The exact numbers of Punjabi speakers in Pakistan is hard to find since there are many dialects / languages, such as Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, which some regard as part of Punjabi and others regard as separate language. When taking into account Hindko, Potwari, Pahari, Saraiki, Punjabi dialects are thus spoken by almost 60% of the population in Pakistan. The standard Punjabi dialects is from Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Sialkot
Sialkot
Sialkot is a city in Pakistan situated in the north-east of the Punjab province at the foothills of snow-covered peaks of Kashmir near the Chenab river. It is the capital of Sialkot District. The city is about north-west of Lahore and only a few kilometers from Indian-controlled Jammu.The...

, Gujranwala
Gujranwala
Gujranwala is a industrial city in the north-east of the Punjab province. It is the sixth largest city in Pakistan with a population of approximately 2,661,360 as on 24 June 2011...

 and Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura or Shekhupur , formerly Kot Dayal Das or Singhpuria or Virkgarh , is an industrial city in the province of Punjab slightly northwest to Lahore in Pakistan. It is known for its historical places, and is commonly known locally as Qila Shaikhupura, because of the fort in the city,...

 districts of the Pakistani Punjab which was used by Waris Shah
Waris Shah
Waris Shah was a Punjabi Sufi poet, renowned for his contribution to Punjabi literature. He is best-known for his seminal work Heer Ranjha, based on the traditional folk tale of Heer and her lover Ranjha. Heer is considered one of the quintessential works of classical Punjabi literature...

 (1722–1798) in his famous book Heer Ranjha
Heer Ranjha
For 1970 Hindi movie of same name and characters, see Heer Raanjha.Heer Ranjha is one of the four popular tragic romances of the Punjab. The other three are Mirza Sahiba, Sassi Punnun and Sohni Mahiwal. There are several poetic narrations of the story, the most famous being 'Heer' by Waris Shah...

 and is also now days the language of Punjabi literature, film and music; such as Lollywood
Lollywood
Lollywood refers to the Pakistani film industry based in the city of Lahore. The word "Lollywood" was first coined in the summer of 1989 in the now defunct magazine "Glamour" published from Karachi by a gossip columnist Saleem Nasir. The film industry in Lahore started in 1929 with the opening of...

. Other dialects are Multani or Saraiki in the West and South, Pothowari & Hindko in the North, Dogri in the mountain areas and Saraiki in the Sargodha
Sargodha
Sargodha is a city in the Sargodha District of Punjab province, Pakistan.Sargodha is located in the northwest of Pakistan. It is the eleventh largest city of Pakistan and also known as Pakistan's best citrus-producing area. It is an agricultural trade centre with various industries...

 district.

Punjabi is descended from Prakrit
Prakrit
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...

 in the Vedic period (1700 B.C.), Pali
Páli
- External links :* *...

, Old Persian and Apabhramsha
Apabhramsha
Apabhraṃśa is a term used by Sanskrit grammarians since Patañjali to refer to dialects that deviate from the norm of Sanskrit grammar. The term in Sanskrit literally means "corrupt" or "non-grammatical language". It is used as a cover term for the dialects forming the transition between the late...

 in the Ashoka
Ashoka
Ashok Maurya or Ashoka , popularly known as Ashoka the Great, was an Indian emperor of the Maurya Dynasty who ruled almost all of the Indian subcontinent from ca. 269 BC to 232 BC. One of India's greatest emperors, Ashoka reigned over most of present-day India after a number of military conquests...

 period (273 B.C. - 232 B.C.) and Hindvi, Lahori and Multani in the Muslim period (711 A.D. - 1857 A.D.) Punjabi literature was principally spiritual in nature and has had a very rich oral tradition. The Great poetry written by Sufi saints has been the folklore of the Punjab and is still sung with great love in any part of Punjab.

Punjabi dialects include:

Major Punjabi dialects in Pakistan


Majhi
Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect is referred to as the standard dialect of Punjabi language originating from the Majha region of the Punjab...

 or Standard Punjabi
The Majhi dialect is Punjabi's prestige dialect
Prestige dialect
In sociolinguistics, prestige describes the level of respect accorded to a language or dialect as compared to that of other languages or dialects in a speech community. The concept of prestige in sociolinguistics is closely related to that of prestige or class within a society...

 and spoken in the heart of Punjab where most of the Punjabi population lives. The Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect
Majhi dialect is referred to as the standard dialect of Punjabi language originating from the Majha region of the Punjab...

 is the dialect of the historical region of Majha
Majha
Majha is a region of the Punjab comprising the modern districts of Amritsar, Gurdaspur and Tarn Taran in the Indian State of Punjab and the districts of Narowal, Lahore and Kasur in the Pakistani Province of Punjab. The term previously applied to Panjabis living north of the Sutlej...

, which spans the Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura
Sheikhupura or Shekhupur , formerly Kot Dayal Das or Singhpuria or Virkgarh , is an industrial city in the province of Punjab slightly northwest to Lahore in Pakistan. It is known for its historical places, and is commonly known locally as Qila Shaikhupura, because of the fort in the city,...

, Kasur
Kasur
Kasur , the capital of Kasur District in Pakistan. Kasur is located adjacent to the border of Ganda Singh Wala between Pakistan and India, and is a tourist attraction because of the daily occurring Flags lowering ceremony...

, Okara
Okara, Pakistan
Okara is the capital city of Okara District in the Punjab province of Pakistan. The name Okara is derived from Okaan, a name of a tree, the city is located south-west to the city of Lahore and is famous for its agriculture-based economy and cotton mills...

, Gujranwala
Gujranwala
Gujranwala is a industrial city in the north-east of the Punjab province. It is the sixth largest city in Pakistan with a population of approximately 2,661,360 as on 24 June 2011...

, Wazirabad
Wazirabad
AYAZ KHANWazirabad is an industrial city located in Gujranwala District, Punjab, Pakistan. Wazirabad is situated on the banks of the Chenab River nearly 100 kilometres north of Lahore on the Grand Trunk Road. It is 45 kilometres from Sialkot, 30 kilometres from the district capital - Gujranwala...

, Sialkot
Sialkot
Sialkot is a city in Pakistan situated in the north-east of the Punjab province at the foothills of snow-covered peaks of Kashmir near the Chenab river. It is the capital of Sialkot District. The city is about north-west of Lahore and only a few kilometers from Indian-controlled Jammu.The...

, Narowal
Narowal
Narowal is a city in the northeast of the Punjab province of Pakistan. The city is the capital of Narowal District and tehsil. It is situated on the banks of Ravi River about 4–5 km from the Indian border.-Etymology:...

, Gujrat
Gujrat
Gujrat is a city in Pakistan. It is the capital of Gujrat District and the Gujrat Tehsil subdivision in the Punjab Province. People living in Gujrat refer to themselves as Gujratis, which sometimes leads to confusion with people from the Indian state of Gujarat which adjoins Pakistan...

 and to some extant in Jhelum
Jhelum
Jhelum or Jehlum may refer to:* Jhelum, a city in Pakistan on the banks of the Jhelum River* Jhelum District, an administrative division in Punjab, Pakistan surrounding the city of Jhelum...

 District of Pakistani Punjab and Amritsar
Amritsar
Amritsar is a city in the northern part of India and is the administrative headquarters of Amritsar district in the state of Punjab, India. The 2001 Indian census reported the population of the city to be over 1,500,000, with that of the entire district numbering 3,695,077...

, Tarn Taran Sahib
Tarn Taran Sahib
Tarn Taran Sahib a city in the Indian state of Punjab. It is the district headquarters and hosts the municipal council of Taran Taran district.-History:Tarn Taran Sahib was founded by the fifth Sikh Guru Shri Guru Arjan Dev Ji...

, and Gurdaspur
Gurdaspur
Gurdaspur is a city in the state of Punjab, situated in the northwest part of the Republic of India. It is located in the center of and is the administrative head of Gurdaspur District. It was the location of a fort which was famous for the siege it sustained in 1712 from the Mughals...

 Districts of the India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

n State of Punjab
Punjab (India)
Punjab ) is a state in the northwest of the Republic of India, forming part of the larger Punjab region. The state is bordered by the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh to the east, Haryana to the south and southeast and Rajasthan to the southwest as well as the Pakistani province of Punjab to the...

.


Jhangochi
Jhangochi (جھنگوچی) dialect is spoken in Pakistani Punjab. Jhangochi or Rachnavi is the oldest and most idiosyncratic dialect of the Punjabi. It is spoken throughout a widespread area, starting from Khanewal and Jhang at both ends of Ravi and Chenab to Gujranwala district. It then runs down to Bahawalnagar and Chishtian areas, on the banks of river Sutlej. This entire area has almost the same traditions, customs and culture. The Jhangochi dialect of Punjabi has several aspects that set it apart from other Punjabi variants. This area has a great culture and heritage, especially literary heritage, as it is credited with the creation of the famous epic romance stories of Heer Ranjha and Mirza Sahiba. It is spoken in the Bar areas of Punjab, i.e., areas whose names are often suffixed with 'Bar', for example Sandal Bar, Kirana Bar, Neeli Bar, Ganji Bar and also from Khanewal to Jhang includes Faisalabad and Chiniot.


Shahpuri
The Shahpuri dialect is mainly spoken in Pakistani Punjab. This dialect has been spoken by the people of District Sargodha including Dera Chanpeer Shah, Khushab, Jhang, Mianwali, Attock, parts of Faisalabad (formerly Lyallpur), parts of Dera Ismail Khan, Dera Ghazi Khan, Bahawalnagar, Chakwal, Mianwali, Sargodha, Khushab and Mandi Bahauddin districts.


Pothowari
This dialect is spoken in northern Pakistani Punjab. mainly The area where Pothowari
Pothohari language
Potwari , also known as Potohari ), is a rich north Indian sub-continent dialect spoken in the Pothohar Plateau around Rawalpindi, Kahuta, Gujar Khan, Jehlum, up to Gujrat in the south and Chakwal in the West, Hazara in the north, Azad Kashmir in the east and also by Sikhs from the Pothohar...

 is spoken extends in the north from Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad is the capital of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan. It is located in Muzaffarabad District on the banks of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers...

 to as far south as Jhelum
Jhelum
Jhelum or Jehlum may refer to:* Jhelum, a city in Pakistan on the banks of the Jhelum River* Jhelum District, an administrative division in Punjab, Pakistan surrounding the city of Jhelum...

, Gujar Khan
Gujar Khan
Gujar Khan is a city in Rawalpindi District, Punjab, Pakistan. It is the headquarters of Gujar Khan Tehsil, the largest tehsil of Punjab. It is approximately 55 kilometres southeast of Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan and 220 km to the north west of Lahore, capital of Punjab...

 and Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi , locally known as Pindi, is a city in the Pothohar region of Pakistan near Pakistan's capital city of Islamabad, in the province of Punjab. Rawalpindi is the fourth largest city in Pakistan after Karachi, Lahore and Faisalabad...

. [phr] 49,440 (2000 WCD). Murree Hills north of Rawalpindi, and east to Bhimber
Bhimber
Bhimber is the chief town of Bhimber District, Azad Kashmir. The town is situated on the border between Azad Kashmir and Pakistan at a distance of about 50 km from Mirpur, about 48 km from Gujrat and about 166 km from Islamabad.-History:...

. Poonchi is east of Rawalakot
Rawalakot
Rawalakot , is a city in Azad Kashmir, and is the capital of Poonch Division and Poonch District. It is in a saucer-shaped valley at an elevation of 1,615 metres ....

. Potwari is in the plains around Rawalpindi. Alternate names: Potwari, Pothohari, Potohari, Chibhali, Dhundi-Kairali. Dialects: Pahari (Dhundi-Kairali), Pothwari (Potwari), Chibhali, Punchhi (Poonchi), Jhelumi, Mirpuri. Pahari means 'hill language' referring to a string of divergent dialects, some of which may be separate languages. A dialect chain with Panjabi and Hindko. Closeness to western Pahari is unknown. Lexical similarity 76% to 83% among varieties called 'Pahari', 'Potwari', and some called 'Hindko' in Mansehra
Mansehra
Mansehra city is located at in Mansehra District, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is very near to Abbottabad city. It is a major stop for tourists on the Karakoram Highway which leads to China...

, Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad is the capital of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan. It is located in Muzaffarabad District on the banks of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers...

, and Jammun. Classification: Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Northern zone, Western Pahari.


Hindko
Classified under Lahnda languages
Lahnda languages
The Lahnda or Western Punjabi Languages are an Indo-Aryan languages dialect continuum that are Mutually intelligible and are spoken in South Asia.According to the Ethnologue they include:...

 by many linguists; perhaps differs from Punjabi. Hindko dialect is spoken in north west Pakistani Punjab and North-West Frontier Province
North-West Frontier Province
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa , formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province and various other names, is one of the four provinces of Pakistan, located in the north-west of the country...

 mainly this dialect is spoken in districts of Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Attock
Attock
Attock is a city located in the northern border of the Punjab province of Pakistan and the headquarters of Attock District...

, Nowshehra
Nowshehra
Nowshehra or Naushera is a town and a notified area committee in Rajauri district in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.-Geography:Nowshehra is located at . It has an average elevation of 1,575 metres .-Demographics:...

, Mansehra
Mansehra
Mansehra city is located at in Mansehra District, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is very near to Abbottabad city. It is a major stop for tourists on the Karakoram Highway which leads to China...

, Balakot
Balakot
Balakot , is a town in Mansehra District in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. The town was destroyed during the 2005 earthquake and later rebuilt with the assistance of the Government of Pakistan and Saudi Public Assistance for Pakistan Earthquake Victims , a Saudi relief organization...

, Abbottabad
Abbottabad
Abbottabad is a city located in the Hazara region of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in Pakistan. The city is situated in the Orash Valley, northeast of the capital Islamabad and east of Peshawar at an altitude of and is the capital of the Abbottabad District...

 and Murree
Murree
Murree city is a popular hill station and a summer resort, especially for the residents of Rawalpindi/Islamabad, and for the cities of the province of Punjab, Pakistan...

 and the lower half of Neelum District
Neelum District
Neelum District is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. Until recently it was part of Muzaffarabad District. It is bound by the Gilgit to the North, with Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipore Districts of Indian-administered Kashmir in India to the South and Southeast,...

 and Muzafarabad.


Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

Saraiki or Multani (also Lehndi by some) is spoken in Pakistani Punjab.It perhaps differ more than any other dialect of Punjabi. It becomes more and more different as you move down south, as the influence of Sindhi increases. Saraiki itself is Sindhi word and means northern.It is now considered as separate language, instead of merely a dialect of Punjabi.It is mostly spoken in southern and western districts of Punjab,which comprises Multan, Lodhran, Bahawalpur, Mianwali, Bhakkar, Layyah, Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffargarh, Rahim Yar Khan, southern and western parts of Khanewal, southern parts of Bahawalnagar and western parts of Khushab districts. It is also spoken by majority of population of Dera Ismail Khan district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (خیبر پښتونخوا) province, kachi plain of Balochistan, northern parts of Sindh, and cities of Hyderabad and Karachi.


Dhani
The people of Pothohar speak Pothohari dialect. However, the people of Chakwal or the Dhanni area in particular do not speak Pothohari and are ethnologically not regarded as Potoharis. They speak a distinctive Chakwali or Dhanni dialect of Punjabi, which is closer to Shahpuri, a dialect spoken in the Shahpur-Salt Range area and also has a slight element of Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

 and Pothohari.

Pashto


Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 (پشتو) Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 is spoken as a first language by 15.5% (28-30 millions) of Pakistanis, mostly in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and in Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 as well as by immigrants to the eastern provinces who are often not counted due to census irregularities. The Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 has rich written literary traditions as well as an oral tradition. There are two major dialect patterns within which the various individual dialects may be classified; these are Pakhto, which is the Northern (Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

) variety, and the softer Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 spoken in the southern areas. Khushal Khan Khattak
Khushal Khan Khattak
Khushal Khan Khattak was a prominent Pashtun malik, poet, warrior,A charismatic personality and tribal chief of the Khattak tribe. He wrote a huge collection of Pashto poems during the Mughal Empire in the 17th century, and admonished Pashtuns to forsake their divisive tendencies and unite...

 (1613–1689) and Rahman Baba
Rahman Baba
Abdul Rahman Baba is popularly known as Rahman Baba , was a Pashtun Muslim poet from Peshawar in modern-day Pakistan who remains the most popular poet among the Pashtuns...

 (1633–1708) were the most famous poets in the Pashto language. In the last part of 20th century, Pakhto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 or Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 has produced some great poets like Ghani Khan
Ghani Khan
Ghani Khan is widely considered as one of the best Pashto language poets of the 20th century, along with Ameer Hamza Shinwari. He stands on a par with Khushal Khan Khattak and Rahman Baba. He was also a respected writer and artist...

, Khatir Afridi
Khatir Afridi
Khatir Afridi was born as Misree Khan in 1929, at Landi Kotal, Federally Administered Tribal Areas, Pakistan near the border of Afghanistan, and died on August 24, 1961. Misree Khan was born to Afridi parents of the Zakka Khel clan. He was a prominent poet of the Pashto language but died young...

 and Amir Hamza Shinwari. There are also many Pakistanis from the adjacent regions of Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

, Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 and Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 who are conversant in Pashto and count it as their second language. They are not included in the overall percentage. Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

 is the biggest Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 speaking city in the world although the Pashto speakers constitute only about 20% of Karachi's population.

Sindhi



Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 (سنڌي) is spoken as a first language by 15.5% of Pakistanis, mostly in Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

. It has a rich literature and is used in schools. It is an Indo-Aryan
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

 (Indo-European
Indo-European
Indo-European may refer to:* Indo-European languages** Aryan race, a 19th century and early 20th century term for those peoples who are the native speakers of Indo-European languages...

) language, derived from Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

, and Arabic languages
Arabic languages
The Arabic language family consists of*Classical Arabic and its descendants, including** Modern Standard Arabic and colloquial varieties of Arabic **The various Judeo-Arabic languages **Maltese...

. The Arabs ruled Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 for more than 150 years after Muhammad bin Qasim
Muhammad bin Qasim
Muhammad bin Qasim Al-Thaqafi was a Umayyad general who, at the age of 17, began the conquest of the Sindh and Punjab regions along the Indus River for the Umayyad Caliphate. He was born in the city of Taif...

 conquered it in 712 AD, remaining there for three years to set up Arab rule. Consequently, the social fabric of Sindh contains elements of Arabic society. Sindhi is spoken by over 36 million people in Pakistan, and is the official language of Sindh province. It is widely spoken in the Lasbela District
Lasbela District
Lasbela is a coastal district of Balochistan province of Pakistan. It became a separate district in Kalat Division on 30 June 1954. The name is derived from the words Las which in Sanskrit signifies a settlement or lived in or lively and Bela which means "A Sea's Shore" in Sanskrit and is also the...

 of Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

 (where the Lasi
Lasi
Lasi is a tribe settled in Lasbela District of Balochistan, Pakistan....

 tribe speaks a dialect of Sindhi), many areas of the Naseerabad
Nasirabad District
Nasirabad is a district in the centre-west of Balochistan, Pakistan. Nasirabad’s headquarters are at Dera Murad Jamali. The district was notified in 1974. For three years, from July 1987 to December 1990, it was known as Tamboo district. Tamboo is a small village 40 km west of Dera Murad...

 and Jafarabad
Jafarabad District
Jafarabad or Jaffarabad district lies in the South-East of the Pakistani province of Balochistan. Jafarabad’s headquarters are at Dera Allah Yar. Formerly known as the Jhatpat subdivision, the region was part of the Jacobabad District until 1970 and part of the Sibi District until 1975...

 districts of Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

, and by the Sindhi diaspora abroad. Sindhi language has six major dialects
Dialect
The term dialect is used in two distinct ways, even by linguists. One usage refers to a variety of a language that is a characteristic of a particular group of the language's speakers. The term is applied most often to regional speech patterns, but a dialect may also be defined by other factors,...

: Sireli, Vicholi, Lari, Thari, Lasi and Kachhi. It is written in the Arabic script with several additional letters to accommodate special sounds. The largest Sindhi-speaking cities are Karachi, Hyderabad
Hyderabad, Sindh
is the second largest city in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is the seventh largest city in the country. The city was founded in 1768 by Mian Ghulam Shah Kalhoro upon the ruins of a Mauryan fishing village along the bank of the Indus known as Neroon Kot...

, Sukkur
Sukkur
Sukkur, or Sakharu , formerly Aror and Bakar, is the third largest city of Sindh province, situated on the west bank of Indus River in Pakistan in Sukkur District. However, the word Sakharu in Sindhi means "superior", which the spelling of the city's name in Sindhi suggests is the origin of the...

, Shikarpur, Dadu, Jacobabad
Jacobabad
Jacobabad or Yaqubabad is the capital city of Jacobabad District, Sindh, Pakistan. The city is also the administrative centre of Jacobabad Taluka, an administrative subdivision of the district, the city is subdivided into 8 Union Councils...

, Larkana
Larkana
Larkana or Larkano is the fourth largest city in the north-western part of Sindh Province, Pakistan, and is located within Larkana District.The old name of larkano is chandka which was changed in 1901. In August 2000 Larkana celebrated its hundred years of existence...

 and Nawabshah
Nawabshah
Nawabshah , or Shaheed Benazirabad, is a district in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is headquarter of Shaheed Benazir Abad District...

. Sindhi literature
Sindhi literature
Sindhi literature is very rich and is generally considered to be among the world's oldest. Its writers have contributed extensively in various forms of literature both in poetry and prose.- Sufi literature and poetry :...

 is also spiritual in nature. Shah Abdul Latif Bhita'i (1689–1752) is one of its greatest poets, and wrote Sassi Punnun
Sassi Punnun
Sassi Punnun ; is one of the seven popular tragic romances from Sindh and Baluchistan. The other six are Umar Marui, Sohni Mehar, Lila Chanesar, Noori Jam Tamachi, Momal Rano and Dhaj, Ror Kumar commonly known as Seven Queens of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai...

 and Umar Marvi
Umar Marvi
Umar Marvi or Marui is a Sindh love story that appears in Shah Jo Risalo. It is a love story set in Sindh, Pakistan. Umar Marui is included in seven popular tragic romances from Sindh and Baluchistan...

, folk stories, in his famous book "Shah Jo Risalo
Shah Jo Risalo
Shah Jo Risalo is the name of the compiled verses of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai. Many scholars and linguists have published Shah Jo Risalo with their own compilations, hence many editions are available...

".

Sindhi Dialects:
  • Sindhi Siraiki - a version of siraiki regarded as a dialect of Sindhi
    Sindhi language
    Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

    ; spoken mainly in Upper Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

    .
  • Vicholi - in Vicholo, i.e. Central Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

    .
  • Lari - in Laru, i.e. Lower Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

  • Lasi - in Lasa B’elo, a part of Kohistan in Baluchistan on the western side of Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

  • Thari or Thareli - in Tharu, the desert region on the southeast border of Sindh
    Sindh
    Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

     and a part of the Jaisalmer
    Jaisalmer
    Jaysalmer , nicknamed "The Golden City", is a town in the Indian state of Rajasthan. It is located west from the state capital Jaipur. It was once known as Jaisalmer state. The town stands on a ridge of yellowish sandstone, crowned by a fort, which contains the palace and several ornate Jain...

     district in Rajasthan
    Rajasthan
    Rājasthān the land of Rajasthanis, , is the largest state of the Republic of India by area. It is located in the northwest of India. It encompasses most of the area of the large, inhospitable Great Indian Desert , which has an edge paralleling the Sutlej-Indus river valley along its border with...

  • Kachhi - in the Kutch region and in a part of Kathiawar in Gujarat, on the southern side of Sindh


Vicholi is considered as the standard dialect by all Sindhi speakers.

Balochi


Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 (بلوچی) is spoken as a first language by about 4% of Pakistanis, mostly in Balochistan province. It is believed that the language was brought to its present location in a series of migrations from the Kurdistan region of northeastern Iraq
Iraq
Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

 and northwestern Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

. Rakshani is the major dialect group in terms of numbers. Sarhaddi is a sub-dialect of Rakshani. Other sub-dialects are Kalati (Qalati), Chagai-Kharani and Panjguri. Eastern Hill Balochi or Northern Balochi is very different from the rest. Balochi language is very close to the Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 itself. The name Balochi or Baluchi is not found before the 10th Century. Rakshani is the major dialect group in terms of numbers. Sarhaddi, is a sub dialect of Rakshani. Other sub - dialects are Qalati, Chagai Kharani, and Makrani
Makrani
Makrani are the inhabitants of Makran coast of Balochistan in Iran and Pakistan.-Sheedi:Black Africans were enslaved and brought to Balochistan in medieval times. The descendants are called Makrani or Sheedi. The Sheedis are a Negroid people in Pakistan...

. The Eastern Hill Balochi or Northern Balochi are distinct dialects. The Kethran language in North East Balochistan is also a variant of Balochi. It is one of the 9 distinguished languages of Pakistan. Since Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 is a very poetic and rich language and have a certain degree of affinity to Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and Urdu, Balochi poets tend to be very good poets in Urdu as well and Ata Shaad, Gul Khan Nasir and Noon Meem Danish
Noon Meem Danish
Noor Mohammed Danish is a Pakistani poet of African and Baloch descent. He is more commonly known as Noon Meem Danish or N. M. Danish.-Early life and education:...

 are excellent examples of this.

Saraiki


Saraiki or Multani (also Lehndi by some) is spoken in Pakistani Punjab.It perhaps differ more than any other dialect of Punjabi. It becomes more and more different as you move down south, as the influence of Sindhi increases. Saraiki itself is Sindhi word and means northern.It is now considered as a separate language, instead of merely a dialect of Punjabi.It is mostly spoken in southern and western districts of Punjab,which comprises Multan, Lodhran, Bahawalpur, Mianwali, Bhakkar, Layyah, Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffargarh, Rahim Yar Khan, southern and western parts of Khanewal,southern parts of Bahawalnagar and western parts of Khushab districts. It is also spoken by majority of population of Dera Ismail Khan district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (خیبر پښتونخوا) province, kachi plain of Balochistan, northern parts of Sindh, and cities of Hyderabad and Karachi.

Hindko


Hindko language
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 (ہندکو) is known as the "language of the mountains" and is one of the oldest languages in Pakistan. It is spoken in many dialects in the districts of Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Kohat, Nowshera, Swabi, Haripur, Abbottabad, Mansehra, Attock
Attock
Attock is a city located in the northern border of the Punjab province of Pakistan and the headquarters of Attock District...

, and Murree
Murree
Murree city is a popular hill station and a summer resort, especially for the residents of Rawalpindi/Islamabad, and for the cities of the province of Punjab, Pakistan...

, the lower half of Neelum District
Neelum District
Neelum District is one of the eight districts of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan. Until recently it was part of Muzaffarabad District. It is bound by the Gilgit to the North, with Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipore Districts of Indian-administered Kashmir in India to the South and Southeast,...

 and Muzafarabad District of Kashmir. Hindko
Hindko language
Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

 is an ancient Indo-Aryan language spoken by Hindkowans
Hindkowans
Hindkowans or known locally as "Chachi's" are an Indo-Aryan ethno-linguistic group native to the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab provinces of Pakistan...

 in Pakistan. It is very similar to northern dialects of Punjabi. The language is spoken in the areas of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (including Hazara), local people of Peshawar Punjab and Azad Kashmir
Azad Kashmir
Azad Jammu and Kashmir or Azad Kashmir for short, is the southernmost political entity within the Pakistani-administered part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir...

 by an estimated 2.2 to 4 million people.{{Citation needed|date=January 2010}} During the pre-Buddhist era in present day Pakistan, the language of the masses was refined by the ancient grammarian Pāṇini, who set the rules of a structurally rigorous language called Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

 which was used principally for scriptures (analogous to Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 in the Western world). Meanwhile, the vernacular language of the masses, Prakrit
Prakrit
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...

 developed into many tongues and dialects which spread over the northern parts of South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. Hindko is believed to be closely related to Prakrit. Due to the geographic isolation of the regions, it has undergone very little grammatical corruption, but has borrowed considerable vocabulary from its neighbours, in particular Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

. It shows close affinity to Punjabi and the Lahnda sub-group of Indo-Aryan tongues and can be sub-divided into a northern and southern dialects.

Kashmiri


Kashmiri
Kashmiri language
Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

 (كأشُر) is an ancient Dardic language spoken in Azad Kashmir
Azad Kashmir
Azad Jammu and Kashmir or Azad Kashmir for short, is the southernmost political entity within the Pakistani-administered part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir...

, Gilgit-Baltistan and Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 provinces of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

. There are over 2 million Kashmiri speakers in Pakistan. Most of the Kashmiris
Kashmiri people
The Kashmiri people are a Dardic linguistic group living in Kashmir Valley in Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir and parts of the Pakistani territory of Azad Kashmir who speak the Kashmiri language...

 in Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 province and Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

 are refugees and their descendents who fled Indian invasion and occupation of Kashmir
Kashmir
Kashmir is the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term Kashmir geographically denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range...

 in 1948.

In 1919 George Abraham Grierson
George Abraham Grierson
Sir George Abraham Grierson OM KCIE was born to a prominent Dublin family in 1851. His father and grandfather, both also named George, were well-known printers and publishers.-Biography:Educated at St...

 wrote that “Kashmiri is the only one of the Dardic languages
Dardic languages
The Dardic languages are a sub-group of the Indo-Aryan languages spoken in northern Pakistan, eastern Afghanistan, and the Indian region of Jammu and Kashmir...

 that has a literature”. Kashmiri literature dates back to over 750 years, this is, more-or-less, the age of many a modern literature including modern English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Kashmiri retains several features of Old Indo-Aryan that have been lost in other Modern Indo-Aryan languages such as Urdu, Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 and Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

.

Brahui


Brahui (براہوی) is of Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 origin despite the fact that a reasonable amount of the language shares lexical similarities to Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 as well as Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 and Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 due to influence of neighboring languages. Though, Brahui has been influenced by these languages, a majority of the literature contains pure Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 words that relate to the languages of South India
South India
South India is the area encompassing India's states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu as well as the union territories of Lakshadweep and Pondicherry, occupying 19.31% of India's area...

. Spoken in southern Pakistan, it may have evolved from the original languages of Indus valley civilizations
Indus Valley Civilization
The Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilization that was located in the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent, consisting of what is now mainly modern-day Pakistan and northwest India...

 at Mehrgarh
Mehrgarh
Mehrgarh , one of the most important Neolithic sites in archaeology, lies on the "Kachi plain" of Balochistan, Pakistan...

, suggesting that the Dravidian
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

 languages were more widespread. It is spoken in central and east central Balochistan
Balochistan (Pakistan)
Balochistan is one of the four provinces or federating units of Pakistan. With an area of 134,051 mi2 or , it is the largest province of Pakistan, constituting approximately 44% of the total land mass of Pakistan. According to the 1998 population census, Balochistan had a population of...

. The Mengal
Mengal
Mengal is a Brahui / Baloch tribe in Balochistan, Pakistan- Demographics :The Mengal tribe is one of the largest Baloch tribe. Mengal people speak Brahui, a Dravidian language that has been heavily influenced by other Iranian languages spoken in the area, especially Balochi...

s are a famous Brahvi tribe. Around 1-1.5% of Pakistani population has Brahui as their first language. It is one of the nine distinguished languages of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

.

The Brahui
Brahui people
The Brahui or Brohi are ethnic Baloch group of about 2.2 million people with the majority found in Kalat, Baluchistan, Pakistan, but they are also found in smaller numbers in neighboring Afghanistan and Iran. The Brahuis are almost entirely Sunni Muslims.-Origins:The ethnonym "Brahui" is a very...

 population of Balochistan
Balochistan (region)
Balochistan or Baluchistan is an arid, mountainous region in the Iranian plateau in Southwest Asia; it includes part of southeastern Iran, western Pakistan, and southwestern Afghanistan. The area is named after the numerous Baloch tribes, Iranian peoples who moved into the area from the west...

 has been taken by some as the linguistic equivalent of a relict
Relict
A relict is a surviving remnant of a natural phenomenon.* In biology a relict is an organism that at an earlier time was abundant in a large area but now occurs at only one or a few small areas....

 population
Population
A population is all the organisms that both belong to the same group or species and live in the same geographical area. The area that is used to define a sexual population is such that inter-breeding is possible between any pair within the area and more probable than cross-breeding with individuals...

, perhaps indicating that Dravidian languages
Dravidian languages
The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

  were formerly much more widespread and were supplanted by the incoming Indo-Aryan languages
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

. According to J. H. Elfenbein, Brahui could have migrated to Balochistan from central India after 1000 CE. He cites the absence of any Avestan
Avestan language
Avestan is an East Iranian language known only from its use as the language of Zoroastrian scripture, i.e. the Avesta, from which it derives its name...

, an older Iranian language, loanwords in Brahui to supports this hypothesis. The main Iranian contributor to Brahui vocabulary, Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, is a western Iranian language like Kurdish, and moved to the area from the west only around 1000 CE.

Shina


Shina
Shina language
Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

 (شینا) (also known as Tshina) is a Dardic language
Dardic languages
The Dardic languages are a sub-group of the Indo-Aryan languages spoken in northern Pakistan, eastern Afghanistan, and the Indian region of Jammu and Kashmir...

 spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 and Dras
Dras
Dras is a town in the Kargil District of Jammu and Kashmir, India. It is often called 'The Gateway to Ladakh'. The town shot into prominence in the summer of 1999 following Pakistani-backed incursions into Jammu and Kashmir...

 in Ladakh
Ladakh
Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

 of regions of Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore
Astore Valley
Astore Valley is now located in Astore District in the autonomous Pakistani regions of Gilgit-Baltistan,previously in the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir. The valley, adjoining the eastern side of mountain Nanga Parbat, is about long, having area of .The entrance of the valley is located...

, Chilas
Chilas
Chilas is a small town located in the Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan on the left side of river Indus. It is part of the Silk Road connected by the Karakoram Highway which links it to Islamabad in the south via Dassu, Besham, Mansehra, Abbottabad and Haripur...

, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit
Gilgit
Gilgit is a city in northern PakistanGilgit may refer to other terms related with the area of the city:* Gilgit River* Gilgit Valley* Gilgit District* Gilgit Agency * Gilgit Airport...

, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan
Baltistan
Baltistan , also known as بلتیول བལིུལ་ in the Balti language, is a region in northern Pakistan which forms Gilgit-Baltistan, bordering the Xinjiang Autonomous Region of China. In addition, a part of Baltistan also falls into Jammu and Kashmir of India. It is situated in the Karakoram mountains...

 and Kohistan. It is also spoken in Gurez
Gurez
Gurez or Gurais, also pronounced Gorai in the local Shina language, is a valley located in the high Himalayas , about from Bandipore and from Srinagar in northern Jammu and Kashmir, India. At about above sea level, the valley is surrounded by snow capped mountains. It has diverse fauna and...

, Drass, Kargil
Kargil District
Kargil is a district of Ladakh, Kashmir, India. Kargil lies near the Line of Control facing Pakistan-occupied Kashmir's Baltistan to the west, and Kashmir valley to the south. Zanskar is part of Kargil district along with Suru, Wakha and Dras valleys...

, Karkit Badgam and Ladakh
Ladakh
Ladakh is a region of Jammu and Kashmir, the northernmost state of the Republic of India. It lies between the Kunlun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent...

 valleys of Kashmir. There were 321,000 speakers of Gilgiti Shina as of 1981, and an estimated total of speakers of all dialects of 550,000. Many Shina speakers are also found in Pakistan's major urban centres of Islamabad
Islamabad
Islamabad is the capital of Pakistan and the tenth largest city in the country. Located within the Islamabad Capital Territory , the population of the city has grown from 100,000 in 1951 to 1.7 million in 2011...

, Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi , locally known as Pindi, is a city in the Pothohar region of Pakistan near Pakistan's capital city of Islamabad, in the province of Punjab. Rawalpindi is the fourth largest city in Pakistan after Karachi, Lahore and Faisalabad...

, Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Abbottabad
Abbottabad
Abbottabad is a city located in the Hazara region of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in Pakistan. The city is situated in the Orash Valley, northeast of the capital Islamabad and east of Peshawar at an altitude of and is the capital of the Abbottabad District...

, Hyderabad
Hyderabad, Sindh
is the second largest city in the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is the seventh largest city in the country. The city was founded in 1768 by Mian Ghulam Shah Kalhoro upon the ruins of a Mauryan fishing village along the bank of the Indus known as Neroon Kot...

 and Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

.

Persian (cultural language)


Preferred language amongst the educated Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 elite, and was the official and cultural language of the Mughal Empire
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 and other Turkic Empires and various Muslim princely states based in what is now Pakistan. Persian was officially abolished from the region with the arrival of the British to the province of Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

 in 1843 and Punjab
Punjab region
The Punjab , also spelled Panjab |water]]s"), is a geographical region straddling the border between Pakistan and India which includes Punjab province in Pakistan and the states of the Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Chandigarh and some northern parts of the National Capital Territory of Delhi...

 in 1849 to minimize the influence of Persia and Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 on the regions that now make up Pakistan and integrate these regions with the rest of South Asia under a common Urdu language. It is still spoken and understood by the educated elite as a literary and prestigious language.

Many Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 speaking refugees, Dari
Dari (Persian)
Dari or Fārsī-ye Darī in historical terms refers to the Persian court language of the Sassanids. In contemporary usage, the term refers to the dialects of modern Persian language spoken in Afghanistan, and hence known as Afghan Persian in some Western sources. It is the term officially recognized...

 and Tajiks, from Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently. There are also Tajiks refugees from Tajikistan
Tajikistan
Tajikistan , officially the Republic of Tajikistan , is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia. Afghanistan borders it to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east....

 that have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

.

Arabic (religious language)


Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 (عربي) is considered to be religious language of Muslims. The Quran, Sunnah
Sunnah
The word literally means a clear, well trodden, busy and plain surfaced road. In the discussion of the sources of religion, Sunnah denotes the practice of Prophet Muhammad that he taught and practically instituted as a teacher of the sharī‘ah and the best exemplar...

, Hadith
Hadith
The term Hadīth is used to denote a saying or an act or tacit approval or criticism ascribed either validly or invalidly to the Islamic prophet Muhammad....

 and Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 theology is taught in Arabic with Urdu translation. The large numbers of Pakistanis living in the Persian Gulf
Persian Gulf
The Persian Gulf, in Southwest Asia, is an extension of the Indian Ocean located between Iran and the Arabian Peninsula.The Persian Gulf was the focus of the 1980–1988 Iran-Iraq War, in which each side attacked the other's oil tankers...

 region and in other Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

ern countries has further increased the number of people who can speak Arabic in Pakistan. Arabic is taught as a religious language in mosque
Mosque
A mosque is a place of worship for followers of Islam. The word is likely to have entered the English language through French , from Portuguese , from Spanish , and from Berber , ultimately originating in — . The Arabic word masjid literally means a place of prostration...

s, school
School
A school is an institution designed for the teaching of students under the direction of teachers. Most countries have systems of formal education, which is commonly compulsory. In these systems, students progress through a series of schools...

s, college
College
A college is an educational institution or a constituent part of an educational institution. Usage varies in English-speaking nations...

s, universities
University
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

 and madrassahs
Madrasah
Madrasah is the Arabic word for any type of educational institution, whether secular or religious...

. Nearly all of Pakistan's Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 population has had some form of education in the reading, writing and pronunciation of the Arabic language
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

.

Many Arabs who took part in Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 war have now settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently with their families. Millions of Pakistanis that have worked in Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

 also speak Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

.

Turkic languages (cultural language)


Turkic (ترک) languages were used by the ruling Turco-Mongols
Turkic peoples
The Turkic peoples are peoples residing in northern, central and western Asia, southern Siberia and northwestern China and parts of eastern Europe. They speak languages belonging to the Turkic language family. They share, to varying degrees, certain cultural traits and historical backgrounds...

 (or Mughals
Mughal (tribe)
The term Mughal is simply a Turkic word and many groups in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh use the term Mughal to describe themselves...

) and earlier Sultans
Delhi Sultanate
The Delhi Sultanate is a term used to cover five short-lived, Delhi based kingdoms or sultanates, of Turkic origin in medieval India. The sultanates ruled from Delhi between 1206 and 1526, when the last was replaced by the Mughal dynasty...

 of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 many of whom have settled in Pakistan. There are pockets of Turkic speakers found throughout the country, notably in the valleys in the countries northern regions which lie adjacent to Central Asia
Central Asia
Central Asia is a core region of the Asian continent from the Caspian Sea in the west, China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, and Russia in the north...

, western Pakistani region of Waziristan
Waziristan
Waziristan is a mountainous region near the Northwest of Pakistan, bordering Afghanistan and covering some 11,585 km² . The area is entirely populated by ethnic Pashtuns . The language spoken in the valley is Pashto/Pakhto...

 principally around Kanigoram where the Burki tribe
Burki
The Burki are a Pushtun tribe of South Waziristan, Pakistan, whose homeland is Kaniguram...

 dwells and in Pakistan's urban centres of Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

, Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

 and Islamabad
Islamabad
Islamabad is the capital of Pakistan and the tenth largest city in the country. Located within the Islamabad Capital Territory , the population of the city has grown from 100,000 in 1951 to 1.7 million in 2011...

. The autobiography of Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Babur
Babur
Babur was a Muslim conqueror from Central Asia who, following a series of setbacks, finally succeeded in laying the basis for the Mughal dynasty of South Asia. He was a direct descendant of Timur through his father, and a descendant also of Genghis Khan through his mother...

, Tuzk Babari
Baburnama
Bāburnāma is the name given to the memoirs of Ẓahīr ud-Dīn Muḥammad Bābur , founder of the Mughal Empire and a great-great-great-grandson of Timur...

 was also written in Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

. After returning from exile in Safavid
Safavid dynasty
The Safavid dynasty was one of the most significant ruling dynasties of Iran. They ruled one of the greatest Persian empires since the Muslim conquest of Persia and established the Twelver school of Shi'a Islam as the official religion of their empire, marking one of the most important turning...

 Persia in 1555, Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Humayun
Humayun
Nasir ud-din Muhammad Humayun was the second Mughal Emperor who ruled present day Afghanistan, Pakistan, and parts of northern India from 1530–1540 and again from 1555–1556. Like his father, Babur, he lost his kingdom early, but with Persian aid, he eventually regained an even larger one...

 introduced Persian language
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 and culture in court and government. The Chaghatai language, in which Babur had written his memoirs, disappeared almost entirely from the culture of the courtly elite, and Mughal
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 emperor Akbar could not speak it. Later in life, Humayun himself is said to have spoken in Persian verse more often than not.

Many Turkic speaking refugees, Uzbeks and Turkmens
Turkmen people
The Turkmen are a Turkic people located primarily in the Central Asian states of Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, and northeastern Iran. They speak the Turkmen language, which is classified as a part of the Western Oghuz branch of the Turkic languages family together with Turkish, Azerbaijani, Qashqai,...

, from Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 have settled in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 permanently. They are also Uzbeks and Turkmen refugees that have moved from Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan , officially the Republic of Uzbekistan is a doubly landlocked country in Central Asia and one of the six independent Turkic states. It shares borders with Kazakhstan to the west and to the north, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan to the east, and Afghanistan and Turkmenistan to the south....

 and Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan , formerly also known as Turkmenia is one of the Turkic states in Central Asia. Until 1991, it was a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic . Turkmenistan is one of the six independent Turkic states...

 and settled in Pakistan. Turkey
Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

 also provides scolarships to large number of Pakistani students to study in Turkish universities. President
President of Pakistan
The President of Pakistan is the head of state, as well as figurehead, of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Recently passed an XVIII Amendment , Pakistan has a parliamentary democratic system of government. According to the Constitution, the President is chosen by the Electoral College to serve a...

 Pervez Musharraf
Pervez Musharraf
Pervez Musharraf , is a retired four-star general who served as the 13th Chief of Army Staff and tenth President of Pakistan as well as tenth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee. Musharraf headed and led an administrative military government from October 1999 till August 2007. He ruled...

 studied in Turkey and spoke Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

 fluently.

The word Urdu is of Turkic origin, as Urdu was originally called Zaban-e-Ordu or language of the Army, ordu meaning army in Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

.

English (official language)


English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 is the official language
Official language
An official language is a language that is given a special legal status in a particular country, state, or other jurisdiction. Typically a nation's official language will be the one used in that nation's courts, parliament and administration. However, official status can also be used to give a...

, being widely used within the government
Government of Pakistan
The Government of Pakistan is a federal parliamentary system, with an indirectly-elected President as the Head of State and Commander in Chief of the Pakistani Armed Forces, and an indirectly-elected Prime Minister as the Head of Government. The President’s appointment and term are...

, by the civil service and the officer ranks of the military. Pakistan's Constitution
Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is the supreme law of Pakistan. Known as the Constitution of 1973, it was drafted by the government of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and, following additions by the opposition parties, was approved by the legislative assembly on April 10, 1973...

 and laws are written in English. Nearly all schools, colleges and universities, use English as the medium of instruction
Medium of instruction
Medium of instruction is a language used in teaching. It may or may not be the official language of the country or territory. Where the first language of students is different from the official language, it may be used as the medium of instruction for part or all of schooling. Bilingual or...

. Amongst the more educated social circles of Pakistan, English is seen as the language of upward mobility and its use is becoming more prevalent in upper social circles often spoken alongside native Pakistani languages. Among countries that use English as an official language, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 is the third most populous in the world.

Minor languages


Other languages spoken by linguistic minorities include Aer, Badeshi
Badeshi language
Badeshi is an Indo-Iranian language spoken in the upper reaches of the Bishigram Valley , east of Madyan, Swat, Kohistan in Northern Areas of Pakistan....

, Bagri
Bagri language
Bagri is a dialect of Rajasthani language of the Indo-Aryan family. It is spoken by about five million speakers in Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar districts of Rajasthan, Sirsa and Hissar districts of Haryana, Firozepur and Muktsar districts of Punjab of India and Bahawalpur and Bahawalnagar areas...

, Balti, Bateri, Bhaya, Brahui, Burushaski, Chilisso, Chitrali
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Dameli
Dameli
Dameli is a language spoken by approximately 5,000 people in the Domel Valley, in the Chitral District of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan....

, Dehwari, Dhatki
Dhatki language
Dhatki, also known as Dhati or Thari, is one of the Rajasthani languages of the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European language family. It is most closely related to Marwari.-Speakers:...

, Domaaki
Domaaki language
Domaakí – also known as Dumaki or Domaá – is a language spoken by a few hundred people living in the Northern Areas of Pakistan.It belongs to the Indo-European language family, and can be affiliated to the Dardic group of the Indo-Iranian branch....

, Farsi (Dari)
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

, Gawar-Bati, Ghera, Goaria, Gowro, Gujarati
Gujarati language
Gujarati is an Indo-Aryan language, and part of the greater Indo-European language family. It is derived from a language called Old Gujarati which is the ancestor language of the modern Gujarati and Rajasthani languages...

, Gujari, Gurgula, Hazaragi, Indo-Pakistani Sign Language, Jadgali, Jandavra, Kabutra, Khowar
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Kachchi (Kutchi)
Kutchi language
Kachhi Kachhi Kachhi (also spelt Cutchi, Kutchhi or Kachchhi, is an Indo-Aryan Language spoken in the Kutch region of the Indian state of Gujarat as well as in Sindh.- Closely related languages :...

, Kalami
Kalami language
Kalami is a Dardic language spoken in northern Pakistan.The language is also known as Gawri or Garwi , but this name is considered pejorative by some speakers.-Classification:...

, Kalasha
Kalasha
Kalasha, also spelled as Kalash and kalasa , is a metal pot with a large base and small mouth, large enough to hold a coconut. Sometimes "Kalasha" also refers to such a pot filled with water and topped with a coronet of mango leaves and a coconut...

, Kalkoti, Kamviri, Kati, Khetrani
Khetrani language
Khetrani or Khetranki is an Indo Indo-European language. It is spoken in north east Balochistan province in Pakistan. The population is speaking this language is 4,000....

, Khowar
Khowar language
For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

, Indus Kohistani, Koli (three varieties), Lasi, Loarki, Marwari
Marwari language
The Marwari language , also variously Marvari, Marwadi, Marvadi), is spoken in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Marwari is also found in the neighboring state of Gujarat and Haryana and in Eastern Pakistan...

, Memoni
Memoni language
The Memoni language is the language of Memons historically associated with Kathiawar, in West India, a Memon subgroup. Many Memons have settled in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan since the independence in 1947...

, Od, Ormuri
Ormuri language
Ormuri is a member of the Southeastern branch of the Eastern Iranian languages, but attempts to classify Ormuri in the Northwestern Iranian languages have also been made. It is spoken in the city of Kaniguram in South Waziristan, Pakistan by the Burki people. It may also be spoken by a few people...

, Pahari-Potwari, Palula (Phalura), Sansi, Savi, Shina (two varieties)
Shina language
Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

, Torwali
Torwali language
The Torwali , or Turvali, language is spoken in Kohistan and Swat districts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan. The language is indigenous to the Torwali people who live in scattered hamlets in the mountainous upper reaches of the Swat valley, above the Pashto-speaking town of Madyan up...

, Ushojo, Vaghri, Wakhi
Wakhi language
Wakhi is an Indo-European language in the branch of Eastern Iranian language family and is intimately related to other Southeastern Iranian languages in the Pamir languages group.-Classification and Distribution:...

, Waneci, and Yidgha. Some of these have a few hundred speakers, while others have tens of thousands of speakers. A few are highly endangered languages that may soon have no speakers at all.

There are around 75 to 80 known languages of Pakistan although, in practice, there are primarily seven major languages in Pakistan spoken by 95% of the population: Punjabi, Pashto, Sindhi, Saraiki, Urdu, Persian, and Balochi. The official language
Official language
An official language is a language that is given a special legal status in a particular country, state, or other jurisdiction. Typically a nation's official language will be the one used in that nation's courts, parliament and administration. However, official status can also be used to give a...

 is English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 and the national language
National language
A national language is a language which has some connection—de facto or de jure—with a people and perhaps by extension the territory they occupy. The term is used variously. A national language may for instance represent the national identity of a nation or country...

 is Urdu, the census indicates that around 8% of the population speak Urdu as their first language
First language
A first language is the language a person has learned from birth or within the critical period, or that a person speaks the best and so is often the basis for sociolinguistic identity...

. However, due to rapid urbanization and modernization, the use of Urdu as a primary language is increasing, especially amongst the growing urbanized middle class of Pakistan. Around 44% speak Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

, 15.5% speak Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

, 15.5% speak Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

, 10.5% Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

, 7.5% Urdu, 3.5% Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 and 3.5% other languages (Hindko, Brahui etc.) as their first language. Most Pakistanis, however, speak or understand at least two to three languages and almost all Pakistanis speak or understand the national language, Urdu.

The most prevalent native languages appear in bold below, with the percentage of the population speaking them as their first language rounded to the nearest percentage point:
{{columns|colwidth=10em
|col1 =
  • Aer
    Aer language
    Aer is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by approximately 300 people in Sindh, Pakistan.-External links:*...

  • Badeshi
    Badeshi language
    Badeshi is an Indo-Iranian language spoken in the upper reaches of the Bishigram Valley , east of Madyan, Swat, Kohistan in Northern Areas of Pakistan....

  • Bagri
    Bagri language
    Bagri is a dialect of Rajasthani language of the Indo-Aryan family. It is spoken by about five million speakers in Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar districts of Rajasthan, Sirsa and Hissar districts of Haryana, Firozepur and Muktsar districts of Punjab of India and Bahawalpur and Bahawalnagar areas...

  • Balochi
    Balochi language
    Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

     (4%)
  • Balti
    Balti language
    Balti is a language spoken in Baltistan, in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and adjoining parts of Ladakh. Baltistan, before 1948, was part of Ladakh province. The Balti language is a dialect of the Ladakhi language, a form of Tibetan. It is mutually intelligible with Ladakhi proper and Burig...

  • Bateri
  • Bhadrawahi
  • Brahui
  • Brokskat
  • Burig
  • Burushaski
    Burushaski language
    The Burushaski or Burushko language , is a language isolate . It is spoken by some 87,000 Burusho people in the Hunza, Nagar, Yasin, and Ishkoman valleys, and some parts of the Gilgit valley, in Gilgit–Baltistan in Pakistan and by about 300 Burusho people in Srinagar in Jammu and Kashmir, India...

  • Chambeali
  • Changthang
  • Chilliso
  • Chitrali
    Khowar language
    For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...


|col2 =
  • Dari
    Dari (Eastern Persian)
    Dari or Fārsī-ye Darī in historical terms refers to the Persian court language of the Sassanids. In contemporary usage, the term refers to the dialects of modern Persian language spoken in Afghanistan, and hence known as Afghan Persian in some Western sources. It is the term officially recognized...

  • Dameli
  • Dogri
    Dogri language
    Dogri is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by about five million people in Pakistan and India, chiefly in the Jammu region of Jammu and Kashmir, but also in northern Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, other parts of Jammu and Kashmir, and elsewhere. Dogri speakers are called Dogras, and the Dogri-speaking...

  • Dehawri
  • Dhakti
  • Domaaki
    Domaaki language
    Domaakí – also known as Dumaki or Domaá – is a language spoken by a few hundred people living in the Northern Areas of Pakistan.It belongs to the Indo-European language family, and can be affiliated to the Dardic group of the Indo-Iranian branch....

  • Gawar-Bati
    Gawar-Bati language
    Gawar-Bati is known in Chitral as Aranduyiwar, because it is spoken in Village Arandu, which is the last village in the bottom of Chitral and is across the Kunar River from Berkot in Afghanistan. Chitral keeps a military base in Arandu to guard against an attack by Afghanistan.There are 9,000...

  • Ghera
  • Goaria
    Goaria language
    Goaria is a Marwari Rajasthani language spoken by some 25,000 people in Sindh Province, Pakistan. The people are predominantly Hindu, and use the Hindi language for worship.-External links:* at the Ethnologue...

  • Gowro
  • Gujarati
    Gujarati language
    Gujarati is an Indo-Aryan language, and part of the greater Indo-European language family. It is derived from a language called Old Gujarati which is the ancestor language of the modern Gujarati and Rajasthani languages...

  • Gojri (Gujari)
  • Gurgula
  • Hazaragi
    Hazaragi language
    Hazaragi is a dialect of the Persian language spoken by the Hazara people, most of all in an area known as the Hazarajat.- General :The primary differences between Standard Persian and Hazaragi are the accent and Hazaragi's greater array of Turkic and Mongolian loanwords...

  • Hindko
    Hindko language
    Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

  • IPSL

|col3 =
  • Jadgali
  • Jandavra
  • Kabutra
  • Kachchi
  • Kalami
    Kalami language
    Kalami is a Dardic language spoken in northern Pakistan.The language is also known as Gawri or Garwi , but this name is considered pejorative by some speakers.-Classification:...

  • Kalasha-mun
  • Kalkoti
  • Kamviri
  • Kashmiri
    Kashmiri language
    Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

  • Kati
  • Khetrani
    Khetrani language
    Khetrani or Khetranki is an Indo Indo-European language. It is spoken in north east Balochistan province in Pakistan. The population is speaking this language is 4,000....

  • Khojki
    Khojki
    Khojki or Khojiki was a script used almost exclusively by the Khoja community of parts of South Asia such as Sindh. It was employed primarily to record Muslim Shia Ismaili religious literature, as well as literature for a few secret Shia Muslim sects....

  • Khowar
    Khowar language
    For the ethnic group, see under Chitrali people.Khowar , also known as Chitrali, is a Dardic language spoken by 400,000 people in Chitral in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the Ghizer district of Gilgit-Baltistan , and in parts of Upper Swat...

  • Kohistani Indus
    Kohistani language
    Kohistani is a Dardic language spoken in Kohistan District, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, Pakistan. Dardic languages are a branch of the Indo-Iranian language group, which in turn is branch of the Indo-European language family...

  • Koli-Kachi
  • Koli-Parkari
  • Koli-Wadiyara

|col4 =
  • Ladakhi
    Ladakhi language
    The Ladakhi language , now also called Bhoti, and by linguists more generally called Western Archaic Tibetan when the Balti and Burig or Purig or Purki dialects are included, is the predominant language in the Ladakh region of the Jammu and Kashmir state of India, and is also spoken in Baltistan...

  • Lasi
  • Loarki
    Loarki language
    Loarki is an Indo-Aryan language, classified as a Rajasthani language, and is spoken by 20,000 nomadic people in rural Sindh of Pakistan....

  • Makran
    Makran
    The present day Makran is a semi-desert coastal strip in the south of Sindh, Balochistan, in Iran and Pakistan, along the coast of the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman. The present day Makran derived its name from Maka, a satrap of Achaemenid Empire....

    i
  • Marwari
    Marwari language
    The Marwari language , also variously Marvari, Marwadi, Marvadi), is spoken in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Marwari is also found in the neighboring state of Gujarat and Haryana and in Eastern Pakistan...

  • Memoni
    Memoni language
    The Memoni language is the language of Memons historically associated with Kathiawar, in West India, a Memon subgroup. Many Memons have settled in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan since the independence in 1947...

  • Multani
    Multani language
    Multani is spoken in southern Punjab, Pakistan. This dialect of Punjabi is mainly spoken in Multan_District, Muzaffargarh_District and adjacent ares like some parts of District Khanewal. It is mentioned in ancient documents....

  • Od
  • Ormuri
    Ormuri language
    Ormuri is a member of the Southeastern branch of the Eastern Iranian languages, but attempts to classify Ormuri in the Northwestern Iranian languages have also been made. It is spoken in the city of Kaniguram in South Waziristan, Pakistan by the Burki people. It may also be spoken by a few people...

  • Pahari
    Pahari languages
    The Pahari languages are a geographic group of Indic languages spoken in the lower ranges of the Himalayas, from Nepal in the east to the Indian states of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir in the west.-Classification:The Pahari languages fall into three groups:*Eastern, consisting...

    -Pothohari
    Pothohari language
    Potwari , also known as Potohari ), is a rich north Indian sub-continent dialect spoken in the Pothohar Plateau around Rawalpindi, Kahuta, Gujar Khan, Jehlum, up to Gujrat in the south and Chakwal in the West, Hazara in the north, Azad Kashmir in the east and also by Sikhs from the Pothohar...

  • Farsi
    Persian language
    Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

  • Pashto
    Pashto language
    Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

     (15%)
  • Punjabi
    Punjabi language
    Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

     (44%)
  • Palula
  • Purik

|col5 =
  • Sansi
  • Seraiki
    Saraiki language
    Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

     (10%)
  • Savi
  • Shina
    Shina language
    Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

  • Shina-Kohistani
  • Sindhi
    Sindhi language
    Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

     (14%)
  • Sindhi-Bhil
  • Torwali
    Torwali language
    The Torwali , or Turvali, language is spoken in Kohistan and Swat districts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan. The language is indigenous to the Torwali people who live in scattered hamlets in the mountainous upper reaches of the Swat valley, above the Pashto-speaking town of Madyan up...

  • Urdu (8%)
  • Uyghur
    Uyghur language
    Uyghur , formerly known as Eastern Turk, is a Turkic language with 8 to 11 million speakers, spoken primarily by the Uyghur people in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of Western China. Significant communities of Uyghur-speakers are located in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, and various other...

  • Ushojo
  • Vagri
  • Wakhi
    Wakhi language
    Wakhi is an Indo-European language in the branch of Eastern Iranian language family and is intimately related to other Southeastern Iranian languages in the Pamir languages group.-Classification and Distribution:...

  • Waneci
  • Yidgha
  • Zangskari

}}

Indo-European


Most of the languages of Pakistan belong to the Indo-Iranian branch
Indo-Iranian languages
The Indo-Iranian language group constitutes the easternmost extant branch of the Indo-European family of languages. It consists of three language groups: the Indo-Aryan, Iranian and Nuristani...

 of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

. They are divided between two major groups of that branch: Indo-Aryan
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

 (the majority, including Urdu, Punjabi, Sindhi, Persian, Hindko, and Saraiki, among others), and Iranian
Iranian languages
The Iranian languages form a subfamily of the Indo-Iranian languages which in turn is a subgroup of Indo-European language family. They have been and are spoken by Iranian peoples....

 (including Pashto, Balochi, and Khowar, among others).

Indo-Aryan and Iranian languages are further divided into groups of languages, although the reasons for the divisions are not always well-documented. Indo-Aryan languages all belong to the same language genus Indo-Aryan, and Iranian languages all belong to a different language genus (Iranian).

Some of the important languages in the Indo-Aryan group are dialect continuum
Dialect continuum
A dialect continuum, or dialect area, was defined by Leonard Bloomfield as a range of dialects spoken across some geographical area that differ only slightly between neighboring areas, but as one travels in any direction, these differences accumulate such that speakers from opposite ends of the...

s. One of these is Lahnda
Lahnda languages
The Lahnda or Western Punjabi Languages are an Indo-Aryan languages dialect continuum that are Mutually intelligible and are spoken in South Asia.According to the Ethnologue they include:...

, and includes Western Panjabi (but not the Panjabi of India and Pakistan), Northern Hindko, Southern Hindko, Khetrani, Saraiki, and Pahari-Potwari, plus two more languages outside of Pakistan. The other is Marwari, and includes Marwari of Pakistan and several languages of India (Dhundari, Marwari, Merwari, Mewari, and Shekhawati). A third is Rajasthani
Rajasthani language
Rajasthani Rajasthani Rajasthani (Devanagari: , Perso-Arabic: is a language of the Indo-Aryan languages family. It is spoken by 50 million people in Rajasthan and other states of India and in some areas of Pakistan. The number of speakers may be up to 80 million worldwide...

, and consists of Bagri
Bagri language
Bagri is a dialect of Rajasthani language of the Indo-Aryan family. It is spoken by about five million speakers in Hanumangarh and Sriganganagar districts of Rajasthan, Sirsa and Hissar districts of Haryana, Firozepur and Muktsar districts of Punjab of India and Bahawalpur and Bahawalnagar areas...

, Gujari in Pakistan and several others in India: Gade Lohar, Harauti (Hadothi), Malvi, and Wagdi.

There are several dialects continuums in the Iranian group as well: Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

, which includes Eastern, Western and Southern Balochi; Pashtun, and includes Northern, Central, and Southern Pashto; and Persian, which includes Western Farsi in Iran and Eastern Farsi in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Non-Indo-European


The following four languages of Pakistan are not part of the Indo-European language family
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

:
  • Brahui (spoken in central Balochistan province) is a Dravidian language
    Dravidian languages
    The Dravidian language family includes approximately 85 genetically related languages, spoken by about 217 million people. They are mainly spoken in southern India and parts of eastern and central India as well as in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran, and...

    . Its vocabulary has been significantly influenced by Balochi. It has been suggested, with evidence, to be linked to the ancient Indus valley civilization
    Indus Valley Civilization
    The Indus Valley Civilization was a Bronze Age civilization that was located in the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent, consisting of what is now mainly modern-day Pakistan and northwest India...

    , but oral history and linguistic evidence indicates that it is a fairly recent immigrant to the area from southeastern India
  • The Balti dialect of Ladakhi
    Ladakhi language
    The Ladakhi language , now also called Bhoti, and by linguists more generally called Western Archaic Tibetan when the Balti and Burig or Purig or Purki dialects are included, is the predominant language in the Ladakh region of the Jammu and Kashmir state of India, and is also spoken in Baltistan...

     (spoken in an area of southern Gilgit-Baltistan) is a Tibetan language of the Tibeto-Burman language family
  • Burushaski (spoken in Hunza, Nagar, Yasin, and Ishkoman valleys in Gilgit-Baltistan) is a language isolate
    Language isolate
    A language isolate, in the absolute sense, is a natural language with no demonstrable genealogical relationship with other languages; that is, one that has not been demonstrated to descend from an ancestor common with any other language. They are in effect language families consisting of a single...

     with no written script

Writing systems


{{Main|Nasta'liq script|Urdu alphabet}}


All languages of Pakistan are written in Nastaʿlīq, a modified Perso-Arabic script. The Mughal Empire
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 used Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 as the court language
Language
Language may refer either to the specifically human capacity for acquiring and using complex systems of communication, or to a specific instance of such a system of complex communication...

 during their rule over South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. During this time, {{transl|Arab|Nastaʿlīq}} came into widespread use in South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. The influence remains to this day. In Pakistan, almost everything in Urdu is written in the script, concentrating the greater part of Nastaʿlīq usage in the world.

After the Islamic conquest of Persia
Islamic conquest of Persia
The Muslim conquest of Persia led to the end of the Sassanid Empire in 644, the fall of Sassanid dynasty in 651 and the eventual decline of the Zoroastrian religion in Persia...

, Iranians adopted the Perso-Arabic script and the art of Persian calligraphy
Persian calligraphy
Persian Calligraphy is the calligraphy of Persian writing system. It has been one of the most revered arts throughout Persian history. It is considered to be one of the most eye catching and fascinating manifestations of Persian culture.-History:...

 flourished in Iran alongside other Islamic countries. Apparently, Mir Ali Tabrizi
Mir Ali Tabrizi
Mir Ali Tabrizi also known as Mir Ali Heravi is distinguished Persian. The precision of tradition still allows for creativity, and there is a telling story of a famous Persian calligrapher, Mir Ali Tabrizi Mir Ali Tabrizi also known as Mir Ali Heravi (b. in Herat Afghanistan and d. in Tabriz in...

 (14th century) developed {{transl|Arab|Nastaʿlīq}} by combining two existing scripts of {{transl
Naskh (script)
Naskh is a specific calligraphic style for writing in the Arabic alphabet, thought to be invented by the Iranian calligrapher Ibn Muqlah Shirazi . The root of this Arabic term means "to copy". It either refers to the fact that it replaced its predecessor, Kufic script, or that this style allows...

 and {{transl|Arab|Taʿlīq}}. Hence, it was originally called {{transl. Another theory holds that the name means "that which abrogated (naskh) Taʿlīq".

Taʿlīq script, in Arabic calligraphy
Islamic calligraphy
Islamic calligraphy, colloquially known as Perso-Arabic calligraphy, is the artistic practice of handwriting, or calligraphy, and by extension, of bookmaking, in the lands sharing a common Islamic cultural heritage. This art form is based on the Arabic script, which for a long time was used by all...

, cursive style of lettering developed in Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

 in the 10th century. It is thought to have been the creation of Ḥasan ibn Ḥusayn ʿAlī of Fars, but, because Khwājah ʿAbd al-Malik Buk made such vast improvements, the invention is often attributed to him. The rounded forms and exaggerated horizontal strokes that characterize the taʿlīq letters were derived primarily from the Riqāʿ script. The ornateness and sloping quality of the written line had roots in the Tawqīʿ script
Thuluth
Thuluth is a script variety of Islamic calligraphy invented by the Persian Ibn Muqlah Shirazi, which made its first appearance in the 11th century CE . The straight angular forms of Kufic were replaced in the new script by curved and oblique lines. In Thuluth, one-third of each letter slopes, from...

 of Ibn Muqlah
Ibn Muqlah
Abu 'ali Muhammad Ibn 'ali Ibn Muqlah Shirazi was a Persian calligrapher, one of the foremost of the Abbasid age. It is thought that he invented the thuluth script, the first cursive style of Arabic, though none of his original work remains.Ibn Muqlah was also a government official...

 (died 940).

Sindhi
Sindhi language
Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

 adopted a variant of the Persian alphabet as well, in the 19th century. The script is used in Pakistan today. It has a total of 52 letters, augmenting the Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 with digraphs
Digraph (orthography)
A digraph or digram is a pair of characters used to write one phoneme or a sequence of phonemes that does not correspond to the normal values of the two characters combined...

 and eighteen new letters ({{lang|sd|ڄ ٺ ٽ ٿ ڀ ٻ ڙ ڍ ڊ ڏ ڌ ڇ ڃ ڦ ڻ ڱ ڳ ڪ}}) for sounds particular to Sindhi and other Indo-Aryan languages. Some letters that are distinguished in Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 or Persian are homophones
Homophone
A homophone is a word that is pronounced the same as another word but differs in meaning. The words may be spelled the same, such as rose and rose , or differently, such as carat, caret, and carrot, or to, two, and too. Homophones that are spelled the same are also both homographs and homonyms...

 in Sindhi.

The Urdu alphabet
Urdu alphabet
The Urdu alphabet is the right-to-left alphabet used for the Urdu language. It is a modification of the Persian alphabet, which is itself a derivative of the Arabic alphabet...

 is the right-to-left
Right-to-left
A language is described as right-to-left if writing starts from the right of the page, and continues to the left. Right to left scripts are:* Arabic alphabet - used for Arabic, Persian, Urdu and many other languages....

 alphabet
Alphabet
An alphabet is a standard set of letters—basic written symbols or graphemes—each of which represents a phoneme in a spoken language, either as it exists now or as it was in the past. There are other systems, such as logographies, in which each character represents a word, morpheme, or semantic...

 used for the Urdu language
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

. It is a modification of the Persian alphabet, which is itself a derivative of the Arabic alphabet
Arabic alphabet
The Arabic alphabet or Arabic abjad is the Arabic script as it is codified for writing the Arabic language. It is written from right to left, in a cursive style, and includes 28 letters. Because letters usually stand for consonants, it is classified as an abjad.-Consonants:The Arabic alphabet has...

. With 38 letters, the Urdu alphabet is typically written in the calligraphic Nasta'liq script
Nasta'liq script
' is one of the main script styles used in writing the Perso-Arabic script, and traditionally the predominant style in Persian calligraphy. It was developed in Iran in the 8th and 9th centuries...

, whereas Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 is more commonly in the Naskh
Naskh (script)
Naskh is a specific calligraphic style for writing in the Arabic alphabet, thought to be invented by the Iranian calligrapher Ibn Muqlah Shirazi . The root of this Arabic term means "to copy". It either refers to the fact that it replaced its predecessor, Kufic script, or that this style allows...

 style.

Usually, bare transliterations of {{Unicode|Urdū}} into Roman letters, Roman Urdu
Roman Urdu
Roman Urdu is the name used for the Urdū language written with the Roman alphabet.According to the famous Urdū scholar Habib R. Sulemani: "Roman Urdu is strongly opposed by the traditional Arabic script lovers...

, omit many phonemic
Phoneme
In a language or dialect, a phoneme is the smallest segmental unit of sound employed to form meaningful contrasts between utterances....

 elements that have no equivalent in English or other languages commonly written in the Roman alphabet.{{Citation needed|date=September 2009}} The National Language Authority
National Language Authority
The National Language Authority is an autonomous regulatory institution established in 1979 to support the advancement and promotion of Urdu which is the national language of Pakistan. Initially it was aimed at creating a synergy between national and provincial governments and institutions for...

 of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 has developed a number of systems with specific notations to signify non-English sounds, but these can only be properly read by someone already familiar with {{Unicode|Urdū}}, Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 or Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 for letters such as {{lang|ur|ژ خ غ ط ص}} or {{lang|ur|ق}} and Hindi
Hindi
Standard Hindi, or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi, also known as Manak Hindi , High Hindi, Nagari Hindi, and Literary Hindi, is a standardized and sanskritized register of the Hindustani language derived from the Khariboli dialect of Delhi...

 for letters such as {{lang|ur|ڑ}}.{{Citation needed|date=September 2009}}

Balochi
Balochi language
Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

 and Pashto
Pashto language
Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

 are written in Perso-Arabic script.

The Shahmukhī script
Shahmukhi script
Shahmukhi is a local variant of the Urdu alphabet, which itself is a Perso-Arabic derivation that has used to write and record the Urdu language in the Indian subcontinent for centuries. Nastaʿlīq is a portmanteau word of naskh of Arabic and ta'aliq,...

 is a local variant of the Urdu alphabet
Urdu alphabet
The Urdu alphabet is the right-to-left alphabet used for the Urdu language. It is a modification of the Persian alphabet, which is itself a derivative of the Arabic alphabet...

, a modified Perso-Arabic script, which has been used by the Punjabi
Punjabi people
The Punjabi people , ਪੰਜਾਬੀ ), also Panjabi people, are an Indo-Aryan group from South Asia. They are the second largest of the many ethnic groups in South Asia. They originate in the Punjab region, which has been been the location of some of the oldest civilizations in the world including, the...

 Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

s of Punjab to write Punjabi language
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

.

See also


{{Portal|Languages|Pakistan}}
  • Urdu
  • Punjabi
    Punjabi language
    Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

  • Sindhi
    Sindhi language
    Sindhi is the language of the Sindh region of Pakistan that is spoken by the Sindhi people. In India, it is among 22 constitutionally recognized languages, where Sindhis are a sizeable minority. It is spoken by 53,410,910 people in Pakistan, according to the national government's Statistics Division...

  • Pashto
    Pashto language
    Pashto , known as Afghani in Persian and Pathani in Punjabi , is the native language of the indigenous Pashtun people or Afghan people who are found primarily between an area south of the Amu Darya in Afghanistan and...

  • Seraiki
  • Balochi
    Balochi language
    Balochi is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.-Vowels:The Balochi vowel...

  • Brahui
  • Persian
    Persian language
    Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

  • Kashmiri
    Kashmiri language
    Kashmiri is a language from the Dardic sub-group and it is spoken primarily in the Kashmir Valley, in Jammu and Kashmir. There are approximately 5,554,496 speakers in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the Census of 2001. Most of the 105,000 speakers or so in Pakistan are émigrés from the Kashmir...

  • Hindko
    Hindko language
    Hindko , also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans in Pakistan and northern India, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki people of Afghanistan...

  • Shina
    Shina language
    Shina is a Dardic language spoken by a plurality of people in Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan and Dras in Ladakh of Indian-Administered Kashmir. The valleys in which it is spoken include Astore, Chilas, Dareil, Tangeer, Gilgit, Ghizer, and a few parts of Baltistan and Kohistan. It is also spoken in...

  • Dari
    Dari (Persian)
    Dari or Fārsī-ye Darī in historical terms refers to the Persian court language of the Sassanids. In contemporary usage, the term refers to the dialects of modern Persian language spoken in Afghanistan, and hence known as Afghan Persian in some Western sources. It is the term officially recognized...

  • Arabic
    Arabic language
    Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

  • Turkish
  • Nastaʿlīq script
  • Urdu script
  • Urdu alphabet
    Urdu alphabet
    The Urdu alphabet is the right-to-left alphabet used for the Urdu language. It is a modification of the Persian alphabet, which is itself a derivative of the Arabic alphabet...

  • Shahmukhī script
    Shahmukhi script
    Shahmukhi is a local variant of the Urdu alphabet, which itself is a Perso-Arabic derivation that has used to write and record the Urdu language in the Indian subcontinent for centuries. Nastaʿlīq is a portmanteau word of naskh of Arabic and ta'aliq,...

  • Roman Urdu
    Roman Urdu
    Roman Urdu is the name used for the Urdū language written with the Roman alphabet.According to the famous Urdū scholar Habib R. Sulemani: "Roman Urdu is strongly opposed by the traditional Arabic script lovers...

  • Urdu keyboard
    Urdu keyboard
    The Urdu keyboardاردو is any keyboard layout for an Urdu computer and typewriter keyboards. Since the first Urdu typewriter was made available in 1911, the layout has gone through various phases of evolution. With time, the variety of layouts introduced in the 1950s for mechanised compositions have...

  • Statistics Division of the Government of Pakistan
    Statistics Division of the Government of Pakistan
    The Statistics Division of the Government of Pakistan, also known as Statistics Division, is a Government of Pakistan's executive and federal department, which is mandate to frames policies for development of statistical services in the country...

  • National Language Authority
    National Language Authority
    The National Language Authority is an autonomous regulatory institution established in 1979 to support the advancement and promotion of Urdu which is the national language of Pakistan. Initially it was aimed at creating a synergy between national and provincial governments and institutions for...

  • Pakistani
  • Demographics of Pakistan
    Demographics of Pakistan
    This article is about the demographic features of the population of Pakistan, including population density, ethnicity, education level, health of the populace, economic status, religious affiliations and other aspects of the population....


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{{Pakistan topics}}
{{Asia topic|Languages of}}
{{Languages of South Asia}}

{{DEFAULTSORT:Languages Of Pakistan}}