26 Interesting Things to Know About Pakistan

(ref: P is for Pakistan, by Shazia Razzak and Prodeepta Das)

Pakistan is a country that was born in 1947. Jasmine is its national flower, Islamabad is the capital city, and there are many bustling towns and quiet villages as well as beautiful mountains, lakes, rivers, and deserts. Here are 26 things you may not already know about Pakistan.

  1. A is for Asslam-U-Alaikum (“Peace be unto you”) which is how people in Pakistan say "Hello".
  2. B is for Badshai Mosque where people come to pray and admire its beauty.
  3. C is for Charpaye, a traditional village bed with a wooden or metal frame woven with colorful yarns.
  4. D is for Dhobi ghat, an open-air laundry near the river bank where dhobis – washermen and women – bring the town’s dirty clothes to wash and spread out to dry.
  5. E is for Eid (pronounced: eed), two of the year’s most important Islamic celebrations. Eid-Ul-Fitre marks the end of Ramadan, the month of fasting, and Eid-Ul-Addha is celebrated after Hajj, the pilgrimage to Mecca.
  6. F is for the wonderful Fruits grown throughout Pakistan including mangoes, bananas, watermelons, winter oranges, dates, and guavas.
  7. G is for Garh, the family home.
  8. H is for Hijaab, meaning to dress modestly. Most Muslim women wear a head scarf to cover their hair, ears, and throat. Others cover their entire body except their eyes.
  9. I is for Indus, a large river flowing from the North to South of Pakistan. Some of the earliest cities grew up along its banks 4000 years ago. Because dams have been built to provide electricity, the river has become very dry.
  10. J is for Jasmine, the national flower of Pakistan.
  11. K is for Kulfi – a special ice-cream that is creamier than ordinary ice-cream.
  12. L is for Laddu – sweet balls made from chickpea flour and sugar. They are often given as presents on happy occasions.
  13. M is for Mothi – sequins and beads used to embroider scarves.
  14. N is for Nihari, a spicy meat curry eaten with Naan (bread).
  15. O is for Ointment bought from the herbalist. Herbalists are often more popular than doctors.
  16. P is for Pakistan. Pakistan is a country that was born in 1947. Its people speak many languages including English, Punjabi, Pushto, and Sinhi, but Urdu is the official language. Islamabad is the capital city, and there are many bustling towns and quiet villages as well as beautiful mountains, lakes, rivers, and deserts.
  17. Q is for Qawali, songs of Islam sung by singers often accompanied by a tambourine, a harmonium (reed organ), and a tabla (a small drum).
  18. R is for Rickshaw, a taxi that has been converted from a three-wheeled motorbike.
  19. S is for Shalwar-Kameez, a three-piece dress suit worn by women made up of a long blouse, trousers, and a scarf or shawl.
  20. T is for Truck, brightly decorated and painted with colorful paintings and lively poems.
  21. U is for Urdu, the national language of Pakistan. It is written right to left.
  22. V is for Volleyball, which is a very popular sport in Pakistan.
  23. W is for Water buffaloes. Nearly 5% of the world’s milk comes from them.
  24. X is for the eXciting [ok, we cheated a bit] kite festival of Basant which marks the coming of spring.
  25. Y is for Yaar, the Urdu word for friends.
  26. Z is for Zeewar, the word for jewelry which people like to show off at weddings and parties.

P Is for Pakistan, available from Reach and Teach, teaches the ABCs of Pakistan with beautiful and engaging photography featuring this country’s many wonders.

Also read, 6 Versions of the “Golden Rule” In Different Faith Traditions


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