Pakistan Ethnic groups in Pakistan Urdu

Flag of Pakistan.svg
Total population
c. 221 million[1]
Regions with significant populations
 Saudi Arabia2,600,000 (2017 estimate)[2]
 United Arab Emirates1,500,000 (2017 estimate)[3]
 United Kingdom1,174,983 (2011 Official UK Census)[4][a]
 United States526,956 (2018 American Community Survey estimate)[5]
 Oman235,000 (2013 estimate)[6]
 Canada215,560 (2016 Official Canada Census)[7]
 Qatar125,000 (2016 Official Qatar estimate)[9]
 Italy118,181 (2017 Official Italy estimate)[10]
 Bahrain112,000 (2013 estimate)[6]
 Spain82,738 (2018 Official Spain estimate)[11]
 Afghanistan75,000 (2017 estimate)[2]
 Germany73,000 (2017 Official Germany estimate)[12]
 France65,000 (2017 estimate)[13]
 Australia61,913 (2016 Official Australia Census)[14]
 Malaysia59,281 (2017 Official Malaysia estimate)[15][16]
 Hong Kong18,094 [18]
 Ireland12,891+ [19][20]
Urdu, Punjabi, Sindhi, Bihari, Pashto, Balochi, Saraiki, Kashmiri, Brahui, Balti and others
Islam 97% (majority Sunni, 5-20% Shia and, other religions: Christianity, Bahai Faith, Hinduism, Kalash Faith, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, Ahmadiyya, Atheism[21]

Pakistanis (Urdu: پاكِستانى قوم‎, romanizedpákistáni qaum) are citizens of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Pakistan is a multi-ethnic and multilingual state: the majority of its people speak languages of the Indo-Aryan and Iranian language groups. According to the 2017 Census, the estimated population of Pakistan was over 212,000,000 making it the world's fifth most-populous country.[22] In terms of overseas Pakistanis, the vast majority live in the Middle East, with an estimated population of 4,700,000.[23] The next largest diaspora is in Europe, where there are an estimated 2,400,000 Pakistanis, with half of them residing in the United Kingdom.[24][4]

Ethnic sub-groups

Pakistan has one of the world's fastest growing populations. Located in South Asia, its people belong to various ethnic sub-groups, most of them being of Indo-Iranic heritage.[25]

Specific-linguistic groups: Punjabi, Sindhi, , Pashtun, Urdu-speaking muhajirs|Bihari Community, Balochi, and Kashmiri, with substantial numbers of Brahui, Hindko, Pahari, Shin, Burusho, Wakhi, Balti, Chitrali and other minority ethnic groups in the remote north of the country.

Main Groups of Pakistan: the Punjabi people, the Pashtun people, the Sindhi people, the Balochi people, the Urdu-speakers and the Kashmiri people.


Pakistan has a rich culture, with all of the provinces maintaining differing social mores. However, Islam has significantly shaped the values and traditions of many Pakistanis. National dress in Pakistan is Shalwar Qamiz.


Pakistan's main language is Urdu. Urdu was chosen as a token of unity and as a lingua franca so as not to give any native Pakistani language preference over the other. It is mostly learned as a second language, with nearly 93% of Pakistan's population having a mother tongue other than Urdu. Urdu is spoken as a first, second or at times third tongue by almost all Pakistani people. Numerous regional and provincial languages are spoken as first languages by the ethno-linguistic groups making up the country, with Punjabi having a plurality of native speakers with 45% of the total population. English is spoken at an official level. Languages with more than a million speakers each include Pashto, Sindhi, Saraiki, Balochi, Brahui and Hindko. There are about 60 additional languages spoken in the country.


The largest religion practiced in Pakistan is Islam. Other religious groups are Zoroastrianism, Hinduism, the Kalash faith, and Christianity. 95% of people in Pakistan are Muslims (majority Sunni), 2% are Hindus, 2% are Christians and less than 1% of the population are Zoroastrian, Kalash, Bahai, Sikh, Irreligious and 1% of people are Ahmadiyyah.[clarification needed]

Irreligion and atheism are present among a minority of mainly young people in Pakistan.[26][27][28] In 2005, 1% of those who participated in the poll were atheist and by 2012, the figure rose to 2% according to the Gallup Poll. The same Gallup poll surveyed 2,700 in Pakistan which 54 people declared they had no religious beliefs at all.[21]


A good number of Pakistani diaspora lives in Middle East, Australia, Europe, UK and North America.According to the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Pakistan has the 6th largest diaspora in the world.[29] According to the Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development, approximately 8.8 million Pakistanis live abroad, with the vast majority, over 4.7 million, residing in the Middle East.[30]

See also


  1. ^ This census figure may not include recent immigrants or people of partial Pakistani ancestry.


  1. ^ "U.S. and World Population Clock". United States Census Bureau.
  2. ^ a b "Economic Survey 2014–15: Ishaq Dar touts economic growth amidst missed targets". The Express Tribune. 4 June 2015.
  3. ^ "Statement showing number of Overseas Pakistanis living, working and studying in different regions/countries of the world, as on 31st December, 2017 - Region-Wise distribution" (PDF). Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development. 31 December 2018. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  4. ^ a b "2011 Census: Ethnic group, local authorities in the United Kingdom". Office for National Statistics. 11 October 2013. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
  5. ^ "Asian alone or in any combination by selected groups". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 9 January 2020.
  6. ^ a b [1][dead link]
  7. ^ Canada, Government of Canada, Statistics. "Immigration and Ethnocultural Diversity Highlight Tables - Ethnic Origin, both sexes, age (total), Canada, 2016 Census – 25% Sample data".
  8. ^ Al-Qarari, Hussein (29 March 2009). "Pakistanis celebrate National Day in Kuwait". Kuwait Times. Archived from the original on 17 June 2011. Retrieved 14 April 2012.
  9. ^ (2017)"Population of Qatar by nationality - 2017 report". Retrieved 8 February 2017.
  10. ^ "Data" (PDF). 2017. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  11. ^ "TablaPx". Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  12. ^ "Ausländeranteil in Deutschland bis 2016 - Statistik". Statista. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  13. ^ étrangères, Ministère de l'Europe et des Affaires. "Présentation du Pakistan". France Diplomatie - Ministère de l'Europe et des Affaires étrangères.
  14. ^ "2016 Census of Population and Housing: General Community Profile: Catalogue No. 2001.0" (ZIP). 2017. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  15. ^ [2][dead link]
  16. ^ Thursday, 27 Jul 2017 08:15 PM MYT. "Home Ministry says there are 1.7 million legal foreign workers in Malaysia as of June 30 | Malay Mail".
  17. ^ 출입국·외국인정책본부. "통계연보(글내용) < 통계자료실 < 출입국·외국인정책본부". Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  18. ^ "Main Tables | 2016 Population By-census".
  19. ^ "Census summary" (PDF). 2016. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  20. ^ "Indian Community In Ireland". Ireland India Council. Archived from the original on 20 January 2018.
  21. ^ a b Husain, Irfan (27 August 2012). "Faith in decline". Dawn. Archived from the original on 4 December 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012. Interestingly, and somewhat intriguingly, 2 per cent of the Pakistanis surveyed see themselves as atheists, up from 1pc in 2005.
  22. ^ (28 August 2017). "Census results show 59.7pc growth in Karachi's population, 116pc in Lahore's since 1998". DAWN.COM. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
  23. ^ "Overseas Pakistani". Retrieved 15 February 2020.
  24. ^ "2.43 million Pakistanis working in Europe". The Express Tribune. 23 April 2017.
  25. ^ Pakistan Population. (2019-08-28). Retrieved 2019-09-14, from
  26. ^ "Pakistani youths turning into atheists". IBN Live. Retrieved 1 July 2012.
  27. ^ "Global Index of Religiosity and Atheism" (PDF). Gallup. Retrieved 2 September 2012.
  28. ^ "The hardest part about being faithless". Pakistan Today. Retrieved 9 February 2014.
  29. ^ Service, Tribune News. "India has largest diaspora population in world: UN". Tribuneindia News Service. Retrieved 18 March 2020.
  30. ^ "Year Book 2017-18" (PDF). Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development. Retrieved 18 March 2020.