223,000 in Pakistan (1992). Population total all countries: 242,200.
North-West Frontier Province, Chitral and Peshawar districts; Northern Areas, Gilgit district, Ghizr valley, Shandur pass to Gupis; Yasin and Ishkhoman valleys, north Swat valley, Ushu; probably in Rawalpindi and other northern cities.
3 (Wider communication).
East Khowar, North Khowar, South Khowar, Swat Khowar. Northern dialect considered more pure. Related to Kalasha [kls] but different. Lexical similarity: 86%–98% among dialects.
The most important language of Chitral. Also use Burushaski [bsk] in the Gilgit District. Also use English [eng] among the educated. Also use Shina [scl] in Gilgit District. Urdu [urd] used among the educated, and in schools. Also use Kalami [gwc]. Used as L2 by Burushaski [bsk], Kalasha [kls], Palula [phl], Yidgha [ydg].
Arabic script [Arab].
Muslim (Sunni), Muslim (Ismaili).