British Pakistanis

British Pakistanis

Infobox Ethnic group
group = Pakistani Britons

poptime = flagicon|UK United Kingdom Over 900,000 (2006)
flagicon|ENG England 861,000 (2006) [ [ Pakistanis in England in 2006] ]
flagicon|SCO Scotland 31,793 (2001) [ [ Pakistanis in Scotland] ]
flagicon|WAL Wales 8,287 (2001) [ [ Pakistanis in Wales] ]
flagicon|Northern Ireland Northern Ireland 666 (2001) [ [ Pakistanis in Northern Ireland] ]
Over 1.5% of the UK's population|popplace = Regions: West Midlands, Greater London,Yorkshire and The Humber, North West England, Scotland
Metropolitan Areas: Greater London, Birmingham Metro Area, Greater Manchester, Leeds-Bradford, Greater Glasgow
Cities and towns: Batley, Birmingham, Blackburn, Bolton, Bradford, Burnley, Bury, Cardiff, Coventry, Derby, Glasgow, Huddersfield, London, Luton, Manchester, Nelson, Lancashire, Nottingham, Oldham, Peterborough, Preston, Reading, Berkshire, Rochdale, Slough, Stoke-on-Trent, Walsall
langs = English
Languages of Pakistan
rels = Mainly Muslims, a few Christians"'
related = British Muslims
Overseas Pakistani
British Asian

Pakistani Britons are people in Britain of Pakistani ancestry. Britain has the second largest overseas Pakistani population after Saudi Arabia. According to an August 2008 article in the Daily Mail, at least 3.7% of children born in England and Wales in 2005 where fully blooded (as apposed to mixed race) Pakistanis, meaning that by 2031 when the UK is expected to peak in population at 71 million, [ [ UK Projected population] ] there could be in excess of 2,630,000 British Pakistanis equating to 3.7% of the total population. [ [ Only two in three babies born in England and Wales are white British, Daily Mail] ]


Pakistan came into existence in 1947, so documentation of the life of Pakistani Britons technically can only start from that year. However, Muslim immigrants from the part of British India now known as Pakistan, entered the British Isles as early as the mid-seventeenth century. During the nineteenth century, the British conquered Sindh in 1843 and Punjab in 1845, in which after many people were recruited to the British East India Company.Fact|date=July 2008

Following the Second World War and the break up of the British Empire, Pakistani migration to the United Kingdom increased, specifically during the 1950s and 1960s, as Pakistan was apart of the Commonwealth.Fact|date=July 2008

The majority of the immigration began in the mid 1950s when manual workers were recruited to fulfil the labour shortage which resulted from World War II. Many people began immigrating from Azad Kashmir after the completion of Mangla Dam in Mirpur in the late 1950s as well, that destroyed hundreds of villages and stimulated a large wave of migration.Fact|date=July 2008

In the years to come, many from Punjab began immigrating in the 1960s; they worked in the foundries of the English Midlands and a large number worked at Heathrow Airport as well. During the same time, medical staff from the Pakistan were recruited for the newly formed National Health Service. These people were targeted as the British had established medical schools in the Pakistan, which conformed to the British standards of medical training such as King Edward Medical College, in Lahore.Fact|date=July 2008

During the 1970s, a large number of East African Asians, who already held British passports, entered the UK after they were expelled from Kenya, Uganda and Zanzibar. The Commonwealth Immigrants Act 1962 and Immigration Act 1971 largely restricted any further primary immigration, although family members of already-settled migrants were still allowed. In addition, much of the subsequent growth in the British Asian community has come from the births of second- and third-generation Asian Britons.Fact|date=July 2008


Integrating in British society

Integration of Kashmir/Mirpuri Pakistanis

Around half of the British Pakistanis living in Britain can trace their origins to this tiny area of Mirpur, Azad Kashmir, which was the site of a Mangla Dam, built in the 1960s and flooded the surrounding farmland. Mirpur is a conservative district, even by Pakistani standards and rural life here has not changed much over the years. Families are not only a source of rigid hierarchies, but also the guiding influence behind everything from marriage to business. [ [ The limits to integration - BBC News, 30 November 2006] ] This has clashed with British values, in which people tend to be more independent and liberal. As a result, some Pakistanis have been forced to live in secluded areas and thus the rise of ghettos in those communities. New research shows the population of these mostly inner city communities has been rising very fast. It is one way to avoid the difficulties of confronting cultural difference - to avoid cross-cultural contact altogether. And it seems to be the route taken by some people of Pakistani origin. There are statistics which suggest that of all communities, Mirpuri Pakistanis live in the most segregated areas of Britain, and their children attend the most segregated schools. The British government has dedicated itself to integrating immigrants, providing some kind of shared identity to which Pakistanis could learn to accept. One plan includes the busing of Pakistani background students to "white schools" in an attempt to bridge the divide between the British public and Pakistanis. [ [ Asian Muslim Ghettos Keep Growing, Hindering Integration]

Integration of Punjabi Pakistanis

People who came from the Punjab area of Pakistan (Punjabis) have integrated much easier into the British society due to the Punjabis being more liberal and having a more lax family structure. British Punjabis of Pakistani origin make up a third of the British Pakistani population. British Punjabis tend to reside more in the South of the United Kingdom while people or Mirpuri origin tend to reisde in the West Midlands and North of England. Due to the nature of Northern towns which relied heavily on one indutry to sustain themselves and the corresponding decline of these industries it seems that the British Kashmiri community has been unable to less integrate themselves given that they have been unable to take advantage of the education and business within these economically depressed environments while those resident in more affluent areas of the country have been able to take advantage of the economic oppurtunities that exist.


See also: Lists of U.K. locations with large Pakistani populations

Approximately 1,000,000 Pakistanis reside in the United Kingdom, according to the Ministry of Labour, Manpower & Overseas Pakistanis (Government of Pakistan)as of June, 2004 [ [ STATEMENT SHOWING DISTRIBUTION OF NUMBER OF OVERSEAS PAKISTANIS LIVING/WORKING/STUDYING IN DIFFERENT REGIONS/COUNTRIES OF THE WORLD AS ON 30-6-2004.] ] . The largest population is located in the West Midlands [ [ Percentage distribution of Pakistani Population UK Wide] ] .


2005 estimates state that almost 200,000 British Citizens of Pakistani origin live in the Boroughs of London.The population is made up of Punjabis, Pathans, Urdu Speakers, Mirpuris and Sindhis.This mix makes the British Pakistani community of London, the most diverse of any in the UK, since the population can trace their origins from all the various regions and cities of Pakistan.The largest presence is in the East London communities of Ilford, Walthamstow, Leyton and Barking, however Newham in East London continues to support the largest community. Other large communities can be found in Southall and Hounslow in West London and Tooting, Croydon and Streatham in South London.A considerable number of Pakistanis have set up their own businesses, often employing family members. Today a fifth of Pakistani Londoners are self-employed. Businesses such as grocery stores and newsagents are common, while others who arrived later in London work as taxi drivers or chauffeurs (especially from NWFP area in Pakistan). Well-known British Pakistanis from London include Anwar Pervez, whose Earl's Court grocery store expanded into the Bestway chain with a turnover of £2 billion and the playwright and author Hanif Kureishi.Younger British Pakistanis are mostly very well integrated into British society and Pakistani British are mostly well educated.Many of them are much more religious than their parents, many into Salafism.Fact|date=July 2008


Birmingham has one of the largest Pakistani expat communities in the World (over 100,000). Most can trace their origins to Azad Kashmir.


The largest visible minority in Manchester are Pakistanis (Majority of Azad Kashmir and Punjabi origin) which make up 3.8% of the total population. Sizeable Pakistani populations are also to be found in the neighbouring districts of Oldham and Rochdale. Significantly, one in eight of all Pakistanis reside in Greater Manchester. This cultural diversity is expected to increase over time, given existing trends. [ [ Manchester Facts & Figures - 1] ]


Bradford is well known for its large Pakistani population (largely from the Azad Kashmir region of Pakistan), and is often dubbed "Bradistan" by Pakistani Britons or "Islamabrad" by the British themselvesFact|date=July 2008. In 2001, riots escalated between the city's majority white population and the ethnic visible minorities (mainly Pakistani), and were called the Bradford Riots. The riot was estimated to have involved 1,000 youths. More than 300 police officers were hurt during the riot. There were 297 arrests in total; 187 people were charged with riot, 45 with violent disorder and 200 jail sentences totalling 604 years were handed down. In 2005, an estimated 74,500 Pakistanis recided in Bradford representing 15.3% of the city's population. [ [ Pakistanis number around 75,000 in Bradford] ]


The majority of Pakistanis living in Scotland reside in Glasgow (and the surrounding Greater Glasgow area). With an estimated 30,000 Pakistanis living in Glasgow, there are large Pakistani communities throughout the city, notably in the South and West sides with a healthy presence of Pakistani owned businesses there. The majority have origins from the central Punjab part of Pakistan.Fact|date=July 2008

Notable British people of Pakistani descent

"See List of British people of Pakistani descent"


Most Pakistani Britons speak English and second, third and fourth generation Pakistani Britons consider English as their first language. Urdu is understood and spoken by many in the community and is often the language of communication between Pakistani Britons. Urdu is taught in madrassas along with Arabic. In some of the larger communities Urdu is also taught in secondary schools and colleges to GCSE and A Levels respectively. Overwhelming, the majority of Pakistanis in the Britain are from Mirpur, Azad Kashmir and the dominant languages therefore spoken are Pothwari and Hindko which are dialects of Punjabi. Other languages include Punjabi as spoken in the Punjab province, Pashto, Sindhi, Kashmiri and Balochi.


The majority 92% of Pakistanis in the UK follow Sunni Islam, however there is a sizeable minority of Shia Muslims as well as some Christians & Hindus throughout the community (at over 8000 people).

Culture & Events

Pakistani Britons come together to celebrate Pakistan's Independence Day on 14 August of each year. Together with the Pakistan Consulate in London, and other embassies within the country it's mission is to project Pakistan in its true colour as a dynamic, moderate and peaceful country. The events usually occur in large Pakistani populated areas of various cities in the United Kingdom, most primarily on Green Street in Newham, London. The celebration lasts all day with various festivals. Muslim of the community mark the Islamic Festivals of Eid ul Adha and Eid ul Fitr.

See also

*Overseas Pakistani
*British Bangladeshi
*List of British Asian people
*BBC Asian Network
*Islam in the United Kingdom
*London's Pakistani community


External links

* [] is a web project from the East India Dock of Former British Empire
* [ BBC Radio Player] discussion on the dissatisfaction over the term Asian
* [ Black Youth Empowerment]
* [ An outline of the immigration pattern of the Pakistani community in Britain] -

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