Pakistani National Language

A sign in the official languages of Pakistan, English and Urdu
Not only are East and West geographically separated, but culturally, they are dissimilar in many ways. Historically, East Pakistan had spoken the language of Bengal and West Pakistan had spoken Urdu. On account that the political power residing in the West, plans were made to have Urdu be the sole language of Pakistan. In Dhaka (the capital of East Pakistan) students staged a protest in 1947 demanding that Bengal be the national language. The situation intensified when currency and stamps were issued in English and Urdu only, not Bengal; This cause a general strike in East Pakistan. When Muhammad Ali Jinnah visited East Pakistan and announced that Urdu would be the only national language, the public was further inflamed. Later, in the Constitution of 1962, Urdu and Bengal were both set as national languages, ending the conflict over the national language.

Students in Dhaka, East Pakistan, rally over the national language issue

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