I have to elaborate on who is Punjabi. In my mind a person belonging to the land of five rivers either currently living there or has ancestory roots, speaks the langauge of that land. I do not see there is a religious boundry to describe a Punjabi. The outsiders may view it differently.
In 1965 ( long time ago, is not it?) when I arrived in England on way to USA, I was visiting a friend whose neighbors were from Pakistan ( Lahore) and believe it or not we watched the news of India-Pakistan war on TV and laughed that both sides have a very common thread that we speak the same language, share the same ancestoral land and here we are being divided by political vested interests. The same was true when in 1950's when there was a Sikh movement in Punjab to award Punjabi Suba based on language like other Indian states in India were being formed based on language or mother tongue. Again it was the works of Politicians to divide Hindus and Sikhs, My Hindu friends from Punjab in USA speak very fluent Punjabi and less fluent Hindi. Bottom line, the political divisions will not define a Punjabi. I still think that the most sweet and beautiful spoken Punjabi is from Lahore. Now how do the others view a Punjabi. A lot of my Gujrati friends always refer Sikhs to being Punjabi. They get more confused when they find out that Hindus living in Punjab and speaking Punjabi are also Punjabis.
Recently, I was in Punjab and things are so different now. Even Sikhs, especially urbanites, are so reluctant and ashamed to speak Punjabi, worse yet they cannot read or write in Punjabi. I would not be surprised that spoken Punjabi may be only overseas or in Pakistani Punjab and not in Indian Punjab.
You are absolutely right. What a marvellous contribution you have made.
At one time, our Punjab had actually FIVE RIVERS flowing through it to justify its name. People were honourable enough to call it by TRUE name LAND OF FIVE RIVERS.
Consider the despicable "rats", the new "sons and daughters" of PUNJAB who so shamelessly write PUNJAB in address while living in ONE fragment of it.
At one time we were all equal under the BOOT OF BRITAIN.
As soon as that boot began lifting, we all got totally confused and felt mighty INSECURE. There was the GUT FEELING of the impending doom and massacres.
At that time when our top leaders went numb, too, the PROPHETS AND GURUS started speaking out to us.
Now which one preached the difference between BELIEVER and INFIDEL?
And which one said, ALL MANKIND IS RELATED, and ONE FAMILY? Their followers lined up behind them ACCORDINGLY.
At that time, encouraged by the British MASTERS and RULERS, we did not challenge those who wanted LAHORE to be out of India. Time was too short and we were being attacked, robbed, EXPELLED and chased out of our homes, all of a sudden and everwhere at the same time.
All round CHAOS and insecurity reigned. None had the luxury of sitting down and THINKING. There were no means of communication as today, the one that I am using right now, that can go past the tyrants and the oppressors.
We all know the countries with the word UNITED in their titles. I am now in one of these, i.e., UNITED Kingdom.
We all also know that when there are CONTENDING faiths and religions (they all did not originate at one place and in one century or political climate!), and there are several vested interests that threaten to TEAR US APART, then we need to seek out a COMMON DENOMINATOR.
Now what could THAT be?
Pondering deep over the scene in Punjab, we realise that there are those who are NATIVE and those who are ALIEN or FOREIGN.
The natives speak a native language (of the soil) and love and respect it. The FOREIGNERS either speak English (even Hindi) in social circles, or pray in ARABIC.
Then we look at the mentality. There are those who carry swords to DEFEND their daughters and temples, and the others who USE THEM wantonly to KILL, CONVERT AND DESTROY.
The ugly circus on this basis was enacted before the eyes of the whole world in our Punjab in 1947. As a result that BLESSED PUNJAB now lies in FIVE WRETCHED FRAGMENTS.
These are: 1. West Punjab, 2. East Punjab, 3. Haryana, 4. Himachal Pradesh; and 5. Chandigarh.
Gutless dwarfs and mindless morons, WE, now accept any KHAN and KALAM because they just happen to be there ON TOP. What love of Guru Nanak does "Mother of Nation", ITALIAN BORN SONIA, have in her heart?
What love of Punjabi language does this Supreme Commander ABDUL KALAM have?
Can we ask such questions even in our dreams?
We see countries with different LANGUAGES, but then with ONE religion.
We see countries with different RELIGIONS but then with ONE language.
But we PUNJABIS are now a lost tribe serving every nation and land but our own; We are like the Spartans of the ancient Greece, going to be extinct. Our dull and duffer LEADERS cannot be blamed since they were obeying the Sarkar like donkeys if they were illiterate, and played the imperial servants if they were barristers from London.
The only COMMON FACTOR, if we have to tolerate the MUSLIM and the HINDU SPEAKER and the URDU speaker on our PURE PUNJABI soil, would be the PUNJABI LANGUAGE and nothing else.
Any other thoughts of ending the strife and divisions and then uniting the FIVE FRAGMENTS into one healthy whole. A united Punjab with LAHORE as its capital, will rival FRANCE and GERMANY in prosperity within the next five and a half decades.