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Language Overview: Punjabi or Panjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region (in Pakistan and north western India).
Regions Spoken: In India, Punjabi is one of the 22 languages with official status in India. It is the first official language of Punjab (India) and Union Territory State Chandigarh and the 2nd official language of Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Delhi. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the provincial language of Punjab (Pakistan) the second largest and the most populous province of Pakistan.
Population: According to the Ethnologue 2005 estimate, there are 88 million native speakers of the Punjabi language, which makes it approximately the 13th most widely spoken language in the world.
Dialects: Punjabi language has many different dialects, spoken in the different sub-regions of greater Punjab. The Majhi dialect is Punjabi's prestige dialect, and is spoken in the historical region of Majha, which spans East-central districts of Pakistani Punjab and the Indian State of Punjab.
Brief History: Punjabi emerged as an independent language in the 11th century from the Sauraseni Apabhramsa. The literary tradition in Punjabi started with Fariduddin Ganjshakar(1173-1266), many ancient Sufi mystics and later Guru Nanak Dev ji, the first Guru of Sikhism.
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by 130 million native speakers worldwide, making it the 9th most widely spoken language in the world.
It is the native language of the Punjabi people who inhabit the historical Punjab region of Pakistan and India.
It is the only tonal language among the Indo-Aryan languages.
Punjabi is the most widely spoken language in Pakistan and the 11th most widely spoken in India and the 3rd-most natively spoken language in Indian Subcontinent. Punjabi is the fourth most spoken language in England and Wales and third most spoken in Canada.
The language also has a significant presence in the United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Saudi Arabia, and Australia.