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Inferiority Complex of Punjabis....

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    Inferiority Complex of Punjabis....

    Often coming across folks from Punjab and especially when in Lahore; I notice that they all (say 90%) tend forcefully to speak in urdu; instead of their mother tongue. To me it comes across as they suffer from an inferiority complex. I know urdu is our national language and hence it should be spoken everywhere but not at the sacrifice of the mother language of the communities; instead these should be encouraged to prosper, like Punjabi which is a very sweet language, so are sidhi, pushto etc.
    When I lived in Karachi urdu speaking folks used to be very proud when conversing in english and surly there was a case of inferiority complex there too.

    Punjabi ki bohot si qismain hai, zaroori nahin ke har punjabi bolne wala dosre ko samajh sake. Is liye hamare ghar main punjabi booli jaati hai, pakistanee dostoon main urdu ...

    Waise I think ke hamare loag language ko bhi rate kate hain, jaise:
    Punjabi bolne wale = Paindoo
    Urdu = Muhazab shahree (Middle class)
    English = Wah para lika hai.


      I don't know which Punjab or Lahore you went to. I have een told by my non punjabi speaking friends to talk in Urdu. If a Punjabi is talkin to a non Punjabi he/she tries their best to talk in Urdu. Majority of Lahoris don't have a clean accent and this is called Gulabi Urdu.



        I think Pakistani's in general all suffer from an "inferiority complex", to one degree or another. In terms of Punjabi's, I noticed quite the opposite (although my travels in Pakistan are limited). In Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, and Lahore I had trouble communicating with people because I can only speak urdu. Many of the people I spoke to, assumed I was from Karachi. They seemed quite proud of their Punjabi heritage.

        In Peshawer I seen Pathans speaking Pushto. Actually I needed my cousin to translate, because the commoner in Peshawer didn't seem to have a very good grasp of Urdu.

        I agree with you about your comments regarding the "inferiority complex" people suffer from. However, I wouldn't say Punjabi's are any worse off than any other group in Pakistan. And I wouldn't characterize it solely on the basis of reluctance to speak ones mother tongue. From personal experience it would seem to me that many Pakistani's (weather they be Punjabis, Sindhis, Baluch, Pathan, Kashmiri, or migrants families) trace their roots to a place outside of Pakistan (Arab ancestory, Persian, etc). Their reluctance to accept their origins is evidence of an "inferiority complex". The other issue which we've discussed here on previous threads is the Pakistani obsession with "lighter skin" - another proof of "inferiority complex".



          Punjabi/Urdu...I don't know abou them..but I heard way too much English when I was in Pakistan. Didn't matter where the person was from. English is thrown into every sentence.


            eat siht



              Oops did I claim to be a "Pakistan scholar". I don't think so. I thought I made it quite clear that I was reflecting on personal expierences.

              I am guilty of making a generalization though. I'm sure not all Pakistani's suffer from an inferiority complex. My mistake and I apoligize. Thanks for pointing that out.

              You seem to have made a generalization yourself:

              "It is true that big cities have social problems, but these problems are not unique to Pakistani cities, these are universal."

              Earlier in your post you say that ruralites do not suffer from the same condition of inferiority as urbanites (you write "[t]hey suffer from no inferiority complex of any sort"). Yet above you refute this statement by stating that "problems" are "universal".

              Achtung (Disclaimer: not a Pakistan Scholar)


                eat siht


                  "Forget about everything and tell me, aren't you happy to see that how patriotic NYAhmadi is?"

                  Yes I am happy to know that you love Pakistan. I'm sorry to hear about the hardships you went through, and happy to know that they didn't adversly affect your feelings of admiration for Pakistan and Pakistani's. I'm sure they made you a stronger person.

                  "You can see why I get so touchy when I see my fellow countrymen (women) highlight the shortfalls, and pay little or no attention to its strengths and the cultural richness it offer."

                  I'm the same way. I try not to be judgmental and try to be sensitive to others feelings, in particular when criticizing. When I criticize Pakistan, I do so not for the sake of criticizing, but for the sake of looking for possible solutions.


                  PS: You wrote: "I personally don't give a shlang about religion - to me all religions are the same."

                  Same in a good way!


                    Check out Jamil Raza's posting in soc.culture.pakistan on the state of Punjabi and Punjabis in Pakistan. A language spoken by more than 60% of the population is getting step motherly treatment. Urdu is spoken by only 8% of present population. Before 1970 Urdu was spoken by 3% of Pakistan's population and we have chosen this as our national language.

                    India on the other hand has sixteen official languages. Apart from Hindi and English, India has Gujarati, Marathi, Punjabi, Tamil, Urdu, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Oriya, Bengali, Assamese, Sindhi,Kashmiri and Manipuri as official languages. English is the business language of India.


                      I think there is some grain of truth in s_malik's post though his mentioning Lahore as a prime example may not be a correct way to go. I think lot of Punjabis, be they in Lahore/Ludhiana/London or LA, in fact any part of the world have some inferiority complex regarding their mother tongue. It is not limited to Muslims or Hindus only, many Sikhs who are percieved as more attached to it than anyone else, suffer from the same complex. I have seen people speaking Hindi or English at homes in Amritsar, Patiala and Ludhiana. I can't claim anything about Lahore. Although a friend living there have mentioned that it is no different.
                      I am also sure that Punjabis of Lahore and for that matter any place else in Punjab are very proud of them being Punjabis. But most of them whenever get the chance show their backs to their mother tongue. Why else a Punjabi kids growing up in Lahore won't get the chance to study his/her mother tongue in school, while a Mexican kid in San Francisco can study Spanish in school? In whole East Punjab there is only one Punjabi paper published from Lahore, even that is a monthly and I can bet my wallet on that if any one of you even knows its name. Even the originator of this post.

                      I think Punjabis have the worst luck that they have been divided every way a community can be, by language, by religion, by country, by accent, by caste, by color...

                      maaN boli je bhul javo ge,
                      kakhaN vangooN rul javo ge. - By a Pakistani Punjabi Poet.


                      [This message has been edited by ChannMahi (edited March 11, 1999).]


                        Time for another history lesson.......

                        Punjabi - under the strict linguistic definition is not a language - it is a dilaect of HIndustani ( ie Urdu/Hindi)
                        much like Rajasthani , khari boli & Braj Bhasha and various behari dialects.....

                        Sindhi, Baluchi & Pushto are all distinct languauges with a formal grammar - literary history script etc ........

                        Indian Punjabi was formalised by the Sikhs in the late 19th century by adopting the gurmukhi script and formalizing the Grammar.

                        The Pre-Islamic langugaes of India was Sanskrit ( North) and Tamil in the Dravidian south. The Muslims replaced sanskrit with Turkish and eventually Persian in finally 1901 to Hindi - acting as the catalyst for the formation of the Muslim League.

                        Anyway to cut a long short Urdu gained prominence in the Lahore-Delhi-Agra Triangle, All three were Mughal capital under various kings. During the Mughal decline Awadh patronage saw the resurgence of the language in Lucknow & Allahbad and subsequently during the British period in the Muslim
                        state of Hyderabad ( a la Karachi - British period). Funny thing I have met some many Hyderabadis of Punjabi descent ( now urdu speaking) who are staunch Urdu speaking karachites... Since Hyderbad was much like Karachi earlier .....

                        Urdu saw its decline under the rule of Ranjit Singh and the Muslim-Sikh animosity during that period. as punjabi dialect gained prominence.

                        Advocates of Punjabi Nationalism often site the 60% figures erroneously but I guess it satisfies the the superiority complexes of both the radical right amongst the Urdu speakers & the the Punjabi nationatlists. On the contrary Urdu has been present in Lahore since Jehangirs time probably earlier - as Urdu Grammar was formalised by Amir Khusrow during Akbars period ....

                        As for the complexes - Punjabis have whole heartedly adopted Urdu as their own and certainly Lahore & karachi have become major literary centers of Urdu replacing the indian cities of Delhi & lucknow whereit is gradually dying out under Indian tuteledge.

                        English is the latest fad amongst Karachites/Islamabadis - much as Urdu is amongst Lahoris...
                        but language or the accent is a poor substitute for civility - which is missing in both these major metropolitan areas....

                        [This message has been edited by Jack Handy (edited March 11, 1999).]


                          fk the hllo





                              Sorry if I gave any wrong impression. I am a very proud Punjabi first and anything else later. You won't find many Punjabis making that claim. They are always, Sikhs first, Indians first or Pakistanis first, jats first etc.

                              I understand that Punjabi is being bulldozed by Hindi and Urdu media but that is not the whole story. We let them do that. Punjabi is as beautiful a language as Hindi or Urdu is. Infact lot of hit bollywood prodcutions were done by Punjabis. I am not undermining the power of Punjabi as a language. No way. Never will. I am although suspicious about the sincerity and comittement of Punjabis to their language. When I say that I don't mean the people on this forum I mean the people who are actually in Punjab. Educated, Rich, well employed, elite. I undertand that Punjabi is the language of masses but how could it survive long term if schools don't teach it and kids don't learn it to pass it from generation to generation. Also if, we are determined to keep it only a spoken language...then of course people are going to call it a language of illiterates and paindoos. I know about that Masters program in Lahore university, which is a great step but again it raises another interesting question do we start our education from top down or bottom up.
                              Talking about Mashrik and Maghrib of Punjab, tears my heart too. But I do respect the existence and Sovereignty of Pakistan as a country.

                              JackHandy: Hey, how is going? Gurmukhi script has been around even long before the 'Sikhs' was a word of vacabulary, although it was called Punjabi. It was formally finalized not in 19th century but 16th by the second Guru of the Sikhs. It is unfortunate enough that its name got associated with sikh gurus. Also, Punjabi is not Indian Punjabi or Pakistani Punjabi. Punjabi is Punjabi. using a different script does not make it a different language. It is a language of its own which may have its roots in other languages of the subcontinent. So does Hindi and Urdu. It does not make them less superior.
                              About Ranjit Singh's Punjabi bias, Persian was his state language and his family and all his officials were very fluent in Persian. There is no historic evidence that he put any efforts to the propagation and develoment of the Punjabi language. In fact I am pretty sure he did not

                              I damn respect the existence and validity of Hindi, Urdu, Persian, Sindhi, Baluchi, Pushto with out any historic proofs and technicalities and laboratory tests and the right of the respective people to speak it, perserve it, write it, develop it; why does rules change when it comes to my mother tongue. Fact is that on the eave of 21st century, Punjabi is being spoken by more than 100 million people around the word, there are numerous radio and TV stations running programming in Punjabi, is being taught and learned by hundreds and thousands of people in the world. Is not it enough for Punjabi to claim to be a language? Or one needs a ruling from some higher and divine power. Suppose some liguists after a long study of the language declare that Punjabi is not a language. Will Punjabi cease to be a language after that proclaimation.

                              Lastly, there is no such thing as Punjabi nantionalism. If it were, one wonders what would have been the history of the subcontinent. The emotions that you see in me and NyAhemdi and likes are pure form of nostalgia and our extreme love for our mother tongue and our past. It should not threaten anyone's existence.

                              BTW, my bet, to name any Punjabi paper's name which is published in Punjab still stands? Any takers? Free lunch for two!(of course one of them will be I)