|— Province —|
Location of Punjab in Pakistan
Map of Punjab, Pakistan
|Coordinates: 31.33°N 74.21°ECoordinates: 31.33°N 74.21°E|
|Established||1 July 1970|
|• Body||Provincial Assembly|
|• Governor||Latif Khosa (PPP)|
|• Chief Minister||Shehbaz Sharif (PML (N))|
|• Total||205,344 km2 (79,284 sq mi)|
|• Density||450/km2 (1,200/sq mi)|
|2012 census preliminary|
|Time zone||PKT (UTC+5)|
Punjab (Urdu: پنجاب), (Shahmukhī Punjabi: پنجاب) , panj-āb, “five waters”: Punjab.ogg (help·info)), also spelled Panjab, is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 55.06% of the country’s total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir (Azad Kashmir, Pakistan and Jammu and Kashmir, India) to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab, Rajasthan, and Gujarat to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the south, the province of Balochistan to the southwest, the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the west, and the Islamabad Capital Territory to the north. The Punjab is home to the Punjabis and various other groups. The main languages are Punjabi and Saraiki and the dialects of Mewati and Potowari. The name Punjab derives from the Persian words Panj (پنج) (Five), and Āb (آب) (Water), i.e. (the) Five Waters – referring to five tributaries of the Indus River which flow through the Punjab region: these being Jhelum, Chenab, Ravi, Beas and Sutlej.
Punjab is the most developed, most populous, and most prosperous province of Pakistan. Lahore has traditionally been the capital of Punjab for a thousand years; it is Punjab’s main cultural, historical, administrative and economic center. Historically, the Punjab region has been the gateway to the Indian subcontinent for people from Greece, Central Asia, Iran and Afghanistan and Vice-versa. Due to its strategic location, it has been part of various empires and civilizations throughout history, including the Indus Valley Civilization, Vedic civilization, Mauryans, Kushans, Scythians, Guptas, Greeks, Persians, Arabs, Turks, Mongols, Timurids, Mughals, Afghans, Sikhs and the British.