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How Urdu language was imposed on the people of Punjab by the British colonialists

El Sidd

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Like RSS and BJP who hate Gandhi

PTI fans seem to hate Jinnah with same passion.

Birds of the fascists flock together
 

fitpOsitive

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Many people don't know that,even many urdu speaker when trying to deface Punjabi they forget that.
The question is, does Punjabis know this fact themselves?
Only one language in subcontinent has two versions and that language is Punjabi, and its latest version is Urdu. That's spectacular about Punjabi people and Punjabi language. If someone doesn't believe me, just compare the vocabulary of Punjabi and Urdu, you will be stunned. I have a Punjabi background, that's why I know these things.
 

Sine Nomine

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The question is, does Punjabis know this fact themselves?
Only one language in subcontinent has two versions and that language is Punjabi, and its latest version is Urdu. That's spectacular about Punjabi people and Punjabi language. If someone doesn't believe me, just compare the vocabulary of Punjabi and Urdu, you will be stunned. I have a Punjabi background, that's why I know these things.
I know that from long time.Langauge changes with time,many langauges spoken today won't be around after 1000 years.
Most people in Pakistan don't care about these things,until someone comes and start abusing these things.
 

niaz

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May I ask what language should have been made the national language of Pakistan? Farsi? Uzbeki Turkish??? Punjabi?
Honorable Sir,

Agree with you one hundred percent. This debate resurfaces time & again using similar objections. We often had such debates during my Gov’t College Lahore days in the early ’60s but then it was primarily the East Pakistani Students who were the objectors. However, even then no one could really come up with a satisfactory answer to the question raised by you. The ground reality is that English is the only other language that could have been chosen other than / instead of Urdu without unduly upsetting other Federal units. But then in 1947 English was spoken & understood only by the educated 'Elite'.

Admittedly, Urdu is ‘Mother Tongue’ of a small minority. Additionally, Urdu has always been spoken & understood largely by the urban population and this is true even today. However, it evolved as a means of communication between the Turkish/Persian speaking Muslim soldiers and the indigenous population. Hence Urdu/Hindustani in various dialects was the only language that could be understood all over the Indo –Gangetic plains. That is why Urdu has traditionally been associated with Muslims of the Northern subcontinent. Strangely enough, while many Pakistanis claim that we are not real Indians and in fact descendants of the Muslims invaders, on the other hand, some are trying to reject the language that resulted directly due to the influence of these Muslims!

I am all for keeping alive the vernacular language, regional culture and the folklore; this reminds us of what we really are and would be dead against imposing a region language on another region. However we do need a language that is understood by all units of Pakistan and in my humble opinion Urdu is the only language that fits the bill.

It is therefore annoying that ever so often articles like the one that started this thread keep cropping up. To me this is an indirect indication of ethnic/provincial bigotry which is the poison which could destroy the unity of my motherland.
 

Mentee

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@Mentee samjhao lokan nu..
As long as iam getting quality life style at my door step iam not bothered about any xyz language. Yolo so keep this futile ethno fascist rattling to those who could garner some brownies in real life if they could.

Strangely enough, while many Pakistanis claim that we are not real Indians and in fact descendants of the Muslims invaders, on the other hand, some are trying to reject the language that resulted directly due to the influence of these Muslims!
The local support base is not in favor to let their overlords to slide away from the same set of rules once enforced vigorously to keep the very same masses away from learning certain things.

. I have a Punjabi background, that's why I know these things.
No you are raa'ngar !!

Pichlay samay he bhalay hova'n, ib to hr banda raftaar pkr ria sayyyy :D
 

fitpOsitive

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As long as iam getting quality life style at my door step iam not bothered about any xyz language. Yolo so keep this futile ethno fascist rattling to those who could garner some brownies in real life if they could.



The local support base is not in favor to let their overlords to slide away from the same set of rules once enforced vigorously to keep the very same masses away from learning certain things.



No you are raa'ngar !!

Pichlay samay he bhalay hova'n, ib to hr banda raftaar pkr ria sayyyy :D
lol...and from where rangres came?

The thing is, people today divide people on these line. Basic problems are unsolved and still we are debating on these things. Most of the europe is speaking today, was totally unknown to their forefathers. They are working for the betterment of their own selves and for the people around, and we are fighting over these small things. @Mentee @niaz @Sine Nomine
 
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Sine Nomine

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lol...and from where rangres came?

The thing is, people today divide people on these line. Basic problems are unsolved and still we are debating on these things. Most of the europe is speaking today, was totally unknown to there forefathers. They are working for the betterment of their own self and for the people around, and we are fighting over these small things. @Mentee @niaz @Sine Nomine
Chorey tain keh tou theek riya sai:D
 
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There is a lot of hate and confusion among Indians. Don't fool yourself, bit you already know this. This behaviour you see in this thread is a typical Subcontinent behavior. We are superior than others. Indians, Pakistanis and others are all guilty of this.
I agree that the subcontinent is known for quarelling among themselves. Subcontinent people are known for showing how they are superior than others.

Confusion about what? Language is an interesting issue in many societies, in Europe you can have countries where people are speaking 3 native languages from a young age. In India you have friction as the Centre wants to create India as a unitary state with Hindi as the national language.
In India too, many know atleast 3 languages. Though the Centre wants to create Hindi as a unitary language, there will always be opposition to them. In India, non-Hindi speakers are united that they don't want Hindi. In Pakistan, non-Urdu speakers are confused about whether Urdu is good for them or not. That's the confusion I'm talking about.

i did't gone through any other similar thread though... .they have mentioned their opinion and mentioned mine in a family all brothers could have different opinion and choices its not a big deal diversity make this world beautiful
The thread name is 'top 10 most spoken languages in the world.'
 
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Honorable Sir,

Agree with you one hundred percent. This debate resurfaces time & again using similar objections. We often had such debates during my Gov’t College Lahore days in the early ’60s but then it was primarily the East Pakistani Students who were the objectors. However, even then no one could really come up with a satisfactory answer to the question raised by you. The ground reality is that English is the only other language that could have been chosen other than / instead of Urdu without unduly upsetting other Federal units. But then in 1947 English was spoken & understood only by the educated 'Elite'.

Admittedly, Urdu is ‘Mother Tongue’ of a small minority. Additionally, Urdu has always been spoken & understood largely by the urban population and this is true even today. However, it evolved as a means of communication between the Turkish/Persian speaking Muslim soldiers and the indigenous population. Hence Urdu/Hindustani in various dialects was the only language that could be understood all over the Indo –Gangetic plains. That is why Urdu has traditionally been associated with Muslims of the Northern subcontinent. Strangely enough, while many Pakistanis claim that we are not real Indians and in fact descendants of the Muslims invaders, on the other hand, some are trying to reject the language that resulted directly due to the influence of these Muslims!

I am all for keeping alive the vernacular language, regional culture and the folklore; this reminds us of what we really are and would be dead against imposing a region language on another region. However we do need a language that is understood by all units of Pakistan and in my humble opinion Urdu is the only language that fits the bill.

It is therefore annoying that ever so often articles like the one that started this thread keep cropping up. To me this is an indirect indication of ethnic/provincial bigotry which is the poison which could destroy the unity of my motherland.
I've heard lots of Muslims say that after the partition, Persian should have been made the official language.nbut these people don't realize that more people spoke English in Pakistan in 1947 than Farsi. That goes to show how few people spoke Farsi.

Then there are those who say that Arabic should have become the official language, the flaws in that suggestion is that Arabic is not a single unitary language, but rather a group of colloquial dialects which vary from region to region. Arabic is not only not native to Pakistan, the family language of Arabic is afro-semitic, whereas English and Farsi are indo-europeon. That's one of the reasons it was easier for us to learn English than Arabic.

Then there are those who opposed the Urdu language because only a minority spoke it, which is true, but they falsely think that Urdu was never spoken in the regions what is now Pakistan before the partition.

And lastly I would say that choosing Urdu was a good idea simply because of one reason. Which is it was a neutral language, no existing province could have said that we're giving another province more prestige because Urdu was not a lingua Franca of any province, and also because it was a way of welcoming the migrants who faced death and destruction in their path to coming to Pakistan, it was the least we could do for them.

I'm half Tajik, Half Pakhtoon, and I'm proud of the Urdu Language. It was a language used to unify us, so that no one group would get too much power.
 
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for centuries, court language of subcontinent was Farsi, all hysterical buildings carry farsi and arabic writings, but irony is .. our people domestically speak their local languages i mean in street of lahore punjabi is the common one,in families they speak Urdu, in office and education we use english, and we offer our prayers in Arabic and list goes on
Brother, Farsi was spoken by less people than English when Pakistan became an independent nation. Arabic was never spoken by any group of people in the Indian subcontinent for day to day conversations. English is an international language, and also language of diplomacy. Arabic is not, neither is Farsi, neither is Turkish.

I would advise you to learn Mandarin because it will greatly help you in the future. I'm currently learning it, I have a long way to go. But a language is just that, a language, a means of communication, let's not make it a god to worship.
 
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I've heard lots of Muslims say that after the partition, Persian should have been made the official language.nbut these people don't realize that more people spoke English in Pakistan in 1947 than Farsi. That goes to show how few people spoke Farsi.

Then there are those who say that Arabic should have become the official language, the flaws in that suggestion is that Arabic is not a single unitary language, but rather a group of colloquial dialects which vary from region to region. Arabic is not only not native to Pakistan, the family language of Arabic is afro-semitic, whereas English and Farsi are indo-europeon. That's one of the reasons it was easier for us to learn English than Arabic.

Then there are those who opposed the Urdu language because only a minority spoke it, which is true, but they falsely think that Urdu was never spoken in the regions what is now Pakistan before the partition.

And lastly I would say that choosing Urdu was a good idea simply because of one reason. Which is it was a neutral language, no existing province could have said that we're giving another province more prestige because Urdu was not a lingua Franca of any province, and also because it was a way of welcoming the migrants who faced death and destruction in their path to coming to Pakistan, it was the least we could do for them.

I'm half Tajik, Half Pakhtoon, and I'm proud of the Urdu Language. It was a language used to unify us, so that no one group would get too much power.
I think that's a great point when you said that by choosing Urdu, neither of the province was being favoured since it was a neutral language.
 

niaz

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After reading the article, I was under the impression that Mr. Tahir Kamran was implying that Urdu was imposed on Pakistan; however, after reading it the second time, I realized that I was mistaken and Mr. Kamran is only lamenting about the imposition of Urdu on Punjab which made me write the second post.

The author complains that it was the Muslims who objected to the declaring Punjabi as official Punjab with researching the reasons why? Does he think that the majority of the Muslim literati including Allama Iqbal, who opposed the common vernacular of Punjab as the official language, was mad or mistaken? Later Tahir Kamran goes on to imply that it was the 1920’ Khilafat movement that fanned the communal antagonism in Punjab.

While I am not able to quote the 50 references in support as the author has done; I have no hesitation in saying that the rejection of Punjabi as the official language of Punjab by majority of the Muslim grandees of Punjab was based upon sound reasoning.

In addition to the fact that Seraiki speakers that currently number about 13-million would have been very unhappy, the problem would have been which script should be used for writing the official Punjabi language?

Most of the Punjabi literature such as Baba Bulleh Shah’s Kalam, Heer by Waris Shan & Saiful Muluk by Mian Mohamed Bakhs had been written in the Persian script. However, Gurumukhi had been invented in 1699 and the Garhanth Sahib completed in 1708 was written in Gurumukhi. Would Sikh have accepted their mother tongue written in the Persian script instead of Gurumukhi as is the case at present in Indian Punjab. On the other hand, Muslims would have never accepted Punjabi written in the Gurumukhi instead of in the traditional Persian script. It therefore clear that adaptation of Punjabi as the official language of Punjab would have caused much confusion and interfaith as well as intra-regional problems.

The Sikhs had been marginalized by the Muslim administration from the 18th century onwards. Singh Sabha literature is full of anti –Muslim rhetoric with Muslims represented as the dangerous others.

The “Chaupa Singh Rahit Nama” translated by McLeod (1987), explicitly details the anti-Muslim theme. The Sikhs are ordered:

“Never associate with a Muslim nor trust his word.
Never drink water from a Muslim’s hands, never eat his food,
And never sleep in his company.
Do not be influenced by anything which a Muslim may say,
Never touch a Muslim woman.
Never eat meat from animals killed according to Muslim rites”

Therefore, in my opinion, Mr Kamran declaration about the effects of Khilafat is not based upon historical evidence. Of course, some Muslims such as the Faqir family of Lahore who were the Ministers during Ranjeet Singh would think otherwise.

In the light of the above, in my humble opinion, the assertion by Mr. Tahir Kamran that Urdu was imposed on Punjab by the British Colonial masters is not wholly correct. The British action did help, but there was an inherent bias towards Urdu by the majority of the educated Muslims primarily because of the historical association of Urdu with the Muslims of the subcontinent.

Finally, in my view the reason why Persian was used for record-keeping during the Ranjeet Singh's era was not because of the love of the Persian language. Even after 72 years English is the language of the majority of the of Gov’t documents simply because it is convenient to carry on with the colonial ways; Sikh Raj carried on with the Persian for official documents for the same reasons.
 

Safriz

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Here in England, the Welsh speak Welsh, the Scottish and Irish speak Gaelic. But all speak English band this is a binding force.
Similar examples of a single dominant language can be found in pretty much all countries of the world.
So spare us from your bigotry.
 

Crusher

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................................... Would Sikh have accepted their mother tongue written in the Persian script instead of Gurumukhi as is the case at present in Indian Punjab. On the other hand, Muslims would have never accepted Punjabi written in the Gurumukhi instead of in the traditional Persian script. It therefore clear that adaptation of Punjabi as the official language of Punjab would have caused much confusion and interfaith as well as intra-regional problems.

The Sikhs had been marginalized by the Muslim administration from the 18th century onwards. Singh Sabha literature is full of anti –Muslim rhetoric with Muslims represented as the dangerous others.

The “Chaupa Singh Rahit Nama” translated by McLeod (1987), explicitly details the anti-Muslim theme. The Sikhs are ordered:

“Never associate with a Muslim nor trust his word.
Never drink water from a Muslim’s hands, never eat his food,
And never sleep in his company.
Do not be influenced by anything which a Muslim may say,
Never touch a Muslim woman.
Never eat meat from animals killed according to Muslim rites”

Therefore, in my opinion, Mr Kamran declaration about the effects of Khilafat is not based upon historical evidence. Of course, some Muslims such as the Faqir family of Lahore who were the Ministers during Ranjeet Singh would think otherwise.

In the light of the above, in my humble opinion, the assertion by Mr. Tahir Kamran that Urdu was imposed on Punjab by the British Colonial masters is not wholly correct. The British action did help, but there was an inherent bias towards Urdu by the majority of the educated Muslims primarily because of the historical association of Urdu with the Muslims of the subcontinent.

Finally, in my view the reason why Persian was used for record-keeping during the Ranjeet Singh's era was not because of the love of the Persian language. Even after 72 years English is the language of the majority of the of Gov’t documents simply because it is convenient to carry on with the colonial ways; Sikh Raj carried on with the Persian for official documents for the same reasons.
No self-respecting Muslim of Punjab ever gave any **** to sikhs or hindus living in Punjab or what they think about us or how they would behave if we f***** them up, the author of the article indeed brings "irrelevant" rants of secularism in between the article but the crux of the article is that "Persian" language was the lingua franca of educated muslims of Punjab whereas Punjabi was their mother language, yes you can be educated/learned in a language other than your mother language like I am educated in Urdu and English languages and learned German to sufficient level in Germany but that I have always been a Punjabi language speaker to all my family, friends and above all to myself. The point that article brings in is that Punjab's cultural and educational norms were destroyed by the b******* British colonialists by forcibly imposing a foreign indian language called "urdu" after their annexation of Punjab in 1849 and he proves it chronologically with official and academic references covering that dark era from 1849 onward under British criminal rule in Punjab.
 
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