Ethnic groups in Pakistan
There are four major ethnic groups in Pakistan:
Pashtuns, Baluchis, Punjabis, and Sindhis. Pashtuns reside mainly in
North West Frontier Province, and Baluchis live mostly in the
Baluchistan province. Punjabis reside in the North-East, namely in the
Punjab province, and Sindhis in the South-East, the Sindh province.
Also, Pakistan is linguistically diverse; besides Urdu, the official
language, Punjabi, Sindhi, Pashto, Baluchi, and Brahui are widely
Parties in Pakistan
are three major parties in Pakistan: Pakistan People’s Party,
currently led by Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari, husband of the former
slain leader and chairwoman of the party, Benazir Bhutto. The official
chairman of Pakistan People's Party (PPP) is Bhutto’s son, Bilawal
Bhutto Zardari. The second major party in Pakistan is
Pakistan Muslim League (PML), which consists of two factions: PML-N is
the largest faction led by Nawaz Sharif, former Prime Minister of
Pakistan. PML-Q split from Pakistan Muslim League in 2001 and formed an
alliance with Musharraf’s government. The third major party is
Muttahida Majlis Amal (MMA) which emerged after Musharraf’s alliance
with the U.S. war on terrorism and comprises six Islamic parties. Jamaat
Islami (JI) and Jamiat Ulema Islam (JUI-F) are the largest groups within
the MMA, which dominates North West Province and Baluchistan provinces
and aims to establish Sharia law in Pakistan (Gregory).
of Resources and Power among Ethnic Groups and Political Parties.
There is an uneven distribution of power and
resources among the political and ethnic groups in Pakistan. Punjabis
account for 44 percent of the population,
control the best farmland, and have full access to education and the
nation’s cultural and scientific institutions, especially in Lahore.
Punjabis also hold high-level positions in the military and government.
Punjabis are represented by the two factions of the Pakistan Muslim
League. On the other hand, Sindhis make up about fourteen percent of the
population, and griculture is their major source of income. The major
city in the Punjab province is Karachi, where the Mohajirs (the Arabic
word for immigrants), who emigrated from India, have
control over commerce and business and hold predominant positions in the
government. Now the Mohajirs account for eight percent of the
population. Politically, the Mohajirs are represented by the Muttahida
Qaumi Movement. Musharraf is a Mohajir. Sindhs, who make up a larger
proportion of the population in the Sindh province, resent the Mohajirs’
domination of the Province’s political and economic institutions.
Pashtuns account for more than 15 percent of the population and live
mainly in the North West Frontier Province, which has been the command
center for the Taliban militants. Pashtuns have strong relations with
Pakistan’s Inter-Services intelligence and the military. Baluchistan
is the largest and least populated Province in Pakistan. Baluchis
account for only four percent of the population, but their province is
rich in resources, especially natural gas. Baluchistan is the poorest
province in Pakistan(Wiseman).
Paul. “Country's EthnicGroups
Maintain Tenuous Bond.” 9 Jan. 2008. USA Today. 23 March 2008 <http://0
Shaun. “The Role of the Military in the Cohesion and Stability of Pakistan.”Contemporary
South Asia 6.1 (2007): 39-61