19th Edition



A language of Pakistan

Alternate Names
Chibhali, Dhundi-Kairali, Pothohari, Potohari, Potwari

2,500,000 in Pakistan (Lothers and Lothers 2007). Total users in all countries: 3,541,900.


All but far north in Azad Kashmir Province; Punjab Province, Rawalpindi, Gujarat, and Jhelum districts; Islamabad; North-West Frontier Province, Abbottabad district.

Language Status

6a (Vigorous).


Pahari (Dhundi-Kairali), Pothwari (Potwari), Chibhali, Punchhi (Poonchi), Mirpuri. ’Pahari’, hill language; Potwari is the language of the Pothwar Plateau. A chain of related varieties with Punjabi [pnb], Hindko [hno], [hnd], and Saraiki [skr], also called Greater Punjabi. Degree of similarity to Western Pahari varieties in India unknown. Lexical similarity: 76%–84% among varieties called, Pahari, Potwari, and some called Hindko in Mansehra, Muzzaffarabad, and Mirpuri in Jammu. A member of macrolanguage Lahnda [lah].

Language Development
Radio programs.

Arabic script, Naskh variant [Arab], Naskh style. Arabic script, Nastaliq variant [Aran], primary usage.

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