The boundaries of the region are ill-defined and focus on historical accounts. The geographical definition of the term "Punjab" has changed over time. In the 16th century Mughal Empire it referred to a relatively smaller area between the Indus and the Sutlej rivers. It bordered the Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa regions to the west, Kashmir to the north, the Hindi Belt to the east, and Rajasthan and Sindh to the south. The people of the Punjab today are called Punjabis , and their principal language is Punjabi. The main religion of the Pakistani Punjab region is Islam.
Punjabi at a glance
It is the native language of the Punjabi people , an ethnolinguistic group of the cultural region of Punjab , which encompasses northwest India and eastern Pakistan. Punjabi is the most widely spoken language in Pakistan ,  the 11th most widely spoken language in India and the third most-spoken native language in the Indian subcontinent. It is the third most spoken language in the United Kingdom after the native British languages and Polish. It is the twenty-sixth most spoken language in the United States , and tenth in Australia. The name of the region was introduced by the Turko-Persian conquerors  of South Asia and was a translation of the Sanskrit name for the region, Panchanada , which means 'Land of the Five Rivers'. The historical Punjab region , now divided between India and Pakistan, is defined physiographically by the Indus River and these five tributaries. One of the five, the Beas River , is a tributary of another, the Sutlej. Paishachi Prakrit was one of these Prakrit languages, which was spoken in north and north-western India and Punjabi developed from this Prakrit.
Punjabi descended from the Shauraseni language of medieval northern India and became a distinct language during the 11th century. There are two main varieties of Punjabi: Eastern Punjabi and Western Punjabi, each of which has a number of dialects. Eastern Punjabi is spoken by about Western Punjabi is spoken by about It is also known as Lahanda, Lahnda or Lahndi. Punjabi is one of India's 22 official languages and it is the first official language in East Punjab. In Pakistan Punjabi is the second most widely-spoken language but has no official status.
Punjabi language , Punjabi also spelled Panjabi , one of the most widely spoken Indo-Aryan languages. It is the official language of the Indian state of Punjab and is one of the languages recognized by the Indian constitution. In Pakistan Punjabi is spoken by some 70 million speakers, mostly in Punjab province , but official status at both the national and the provincial level is reserved for Urdu. There are also important overseas communities of Punjabi speakers, particularly in Canada and the United Kingdom —where in the early 21st century they respectively constituted the third and fourth largest linguistic groups in the national populations—as well as in several parts of the United States.