geographic region divided between Pakistan and India

The Punjab, also spelled Panjab (from Persian panj, "five" + āb, "water" or "river", thus land of "five rivers";), is a geopolitical, cultural and historical region in South Asia, specifically in the northern part of the Indian subcontinent, comprising areas of eastern Pakistan and northern India.


  • "The word Punjab is a compound of two words-Panj (Five) and aab (Water), thus signifying the land of five watrers or rivers. This origin can perhaps be traced to panch nada, Sanskrit for 'Five rivers' the word used before the advent of Muslims with a knowledge of Persian to describe the meeting point of the Jhelum, Chenab, Ravi, Beas, and Sutlej rivers, before they joined the Indus."
    • Rajesh Bala (2005). "Foreign Invasions and their Effect on Punjab". In Sukhdial Singh (ed.). Punjab History Conference, Thirty-seventh Session, March 18-20, 2005: Proceedings. Punjabi University. p. 80. ISBN 978-81-7380-990-3.
  • "The earliest mention of five rivers in the collective sense was found in Yajurveda and a word Panchananda was used, which is a Sanskrit word to describe a land where five rivers meet. [...] In the later period the word Pentapotamia was used by the Greeks to identify this land. (Penta means 5 and potamia, water ___ the land of five rivers) Muslim Historians implied the word "Punjab " for this region. Again it was not a new word because in Persian speaking areas, there are references of this name given to any particular place where five rivers or lakes meet."
    • Khalid, Kanwal (2015). "Lahore of Pre Historic Era" (PDF). Journal of the Research Society of Pakistan. 52 (2): 73.
  • "The Panjáb, the Pentapotamia of the Greek historians, the north-western region of the empire of Hindostán, derives its name from two Persian words, panj (five), an áb (water, having reference to the five rivers which confer on the country its distinguishing features.""
    • Latif, Syad Muhammad (1891). History of the Panjáb from the Remotest Antiquity to the Present Time. Calcultta Central Press Company. p. 1.
  • That part of India which today we call by the Persian name Penjab is named Panchanada in the sacred language of the Indians; either of which names may be rendered in Greek by Πενταποταμια. The Persian origin of the former name is not at all in doubt, although the words of which it is composed are both Indian and Persian ... But, in truth, that final word is never, to my knowledge, used by the Indians in proper names compounded in this way; on the other hand, there exist multiple Persian names which end with that word, e.g., Doab and Nilab. Therefore it is probable that the name Penjab, which is today found in all geographical books, is of more recent origin and is to be attributed to the Muslim kings of India, among whom the Persian language was mostly in use. That the Indian name Panchanada is ancient and genuine is evident from the fact that it is already seen in the Ramayana and Mahabharata, the most ancient Indian poems, and that no other exists in addition to it among the Indians; for Panchála, which English translations of the Ramayana render with Penjab, ... is the name of another region, entirely distinct from Pentapotamia, as we shall see below.
    • Lassen, Christian (1827). Commentatio Geographica atque Historica de Pentapotamia Indica [A Geographical and Historical Commentary on Indian Pentapotamia]. Weber. p. 4. ""
  • If all the Punjabis were to die to the last man without killing, Punjab will be immortal. ... Offer yourselves as non-violent, willing sacrifices.
    • Mahatma Gandhi, during Partition of India. Attributed, in: Larry Collins and D. Lapierre, Freedom at Midnight.
  • ‘I am grieved to learn that people are running away from the West Punjab and I am told that Lahore is being evacuated by the non-Muslims. I must say that this is what it should not be. If you think Lahore is dead or is dying, do not run away from it, but die with what you think is the dying Lahore. (…) When you suffer from fear you die before death comes to you. That is not glorious. I will not feel sorry if I hear that people in the Punjab have died not as cowards but as brave men. (…) I cannot be forced to salute any flag. If in that act I am murdered I would bear no ill will against anyone and would rather pray for better sense for the person or persons who murder me.’
    • Mahatma Gandhi, during Partition of India. 6 August 1947,. (Hindustan Times, 8-8-1947, CWoMG, vol. LXXXIX, p. 11)Quoted from Elst, Koenraad (2018). Why I killed the Mahatma: Uncovering Godse's defence. New Delhi : Rupa, 2018. App. 4
  • “The Punjab Muslims do not believe in non-violence and should not, therefore, be given cause for grievance because once the Muslim lion is infuriated it would become difficult to subdue him.”
  • Let no Sikh be allowed to remain in Western Punjab. “Koi Sikh rehne na pae Maghribi Punjab men”.
  • Sikhs have some of their most sacred Gurdwaras in the West Punjab. The freedom of these Gurdwaras and access to them for purposes of worship forms the sorest point of grievance which the Sikhs have at present against the Pakistan Government, and what is regarded as the easy attitude which the Indian Government is adopting with regard to this matter so deeply vital to Sikh religious sentiment.
Talib, S. G. S. (1950). Muslim League Attack on Sikhs and Hindus inthe Punjab, 1947. Amritsar: Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee. [9] [10] [11] [12]  p. 231

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