Punjabi dialects

Malwai is a Punjabi dialect spoken in the Malwa region of Punjab. Major Malwai speaking centers are Ferozepur, Fazilka, Faridkot, Muktsar,[note 1] Moga, Bathinda, Barnala, Mansa districts and Jagraon, Raikot and Ludhiana (West) tehsils of Ludhiana district.[note 2] In Pakistan, it is spoken in Bahawalnagar and Vehari districts of Punjab. A big number of Malwai speakers also living in Dabwali, Kalanwali and Rania tehsils of Sirsa and Jakhal, Ratia & Tohana tehsils of Fatehabad districts of Haryana, Sri Ganganagar and Hanumangarh districts of Rajasthan.

Although the characteristic distinction among the various dialects of Punjabi language lies in the speech pattern, the Malwai dialect most notably differs from the other dialects through its distinctive 'ū' (ਊ) sound in all future-tense verb endings.

Verb Conjugation Differences
Standard Punjabi Malwai Dialect
āegā āūgā
āegī āūgī
āoge āūṃge
pīegā pīūgā
pīegī pīūgī
pīoge pīūṃge

Another notable difference is that where other Punjabi dialects have an 'L' sound, in Malwai many of those words are pronounced with an 'R' (ਰ) or 'ɭ̆' (ਲ਼) instead.

The following peculiarities in vocabulary are also observed:

English Majhi or Standard Punjabi. Malwai
He will come. ਉਹ ਆਏਗਾ/ਉਹ ਆਵੇਗਾ। ਉਹ ਆਊਗਾ।
I am coming. ਮੈਂ ਆ ਰਿਹਾ ਹਾਂ/ਮੈਂ ਆਉਂਦਾ ਪਿਆ ਹਾਂ। ਮੈਂ ਆਈ ਜਾਨਾਂ।
He is coming. ਉਹ ਆ ਰਿਹਾ ਹੈ/ਉਹ ਆਉਂਦਾ ਪਿਆ ਹੈ। ਉਹ ਆਈ ਜਾਂਦੈ।
To lift/to pick (up) ਚੁੱਕਣਾ ਚੱਕਣਾ
To uproot/to dig (out) ਪੁੱਟਣਾ ਪੱਟਣਾ
Your ਤੁਹਾਡਾ ਥੋਡਾ/ਸੋਡਾ
(My/your/his/her) own ਆਪਣਾ ਆਵਦਾ
By me/from me ਮੇਰੇ ਤੋਂ/ਮੇਰੇ ਕੋਲੋਂ ਮੈਥੋਂ
By you/from you ਤੁਹਾਡੇ ਤੋਂ/ਤੁਹਾਡੇ ਕੋਲੋਂ ਥੋਤੋਂ
To you ਤੁਹਾਨੂੰ ਥੋਨੂੰ
Camel ਊਠ ਉੱਠ
Son ਪੁੱਤਰ ਪੁੱਤ
Friend ਮਿੱਤਰ ਮਿੱਤ
Urine ਮੂਤਰ ਮੂਤ
Dew drop ਤ੍ਰੇਲ਼ ਤੇਲ਼

Also, in contrast with Majhi dialect, 'ਹ' is not tonal. Exceptions are encountered when 'ਹ' is not followed by a schwa ending or a vowel sound, as in, ਕਹਿਣਾ, ਰਹਿ, ਘਾਹ.


  1. ^ The language spoken in some southern villages of Fazilka, Muktsar and Bahawalnagar districts forms a dialect continuum with Bagri language, which is classified as a dialect of Rajasthani language.
  2. ^ The Punjabi spoken in eastern tehsils of Ludhiana district (Ludhiana (East), Payal, Khanna and Samrala) forms a dialect continuum with Pwadhi dialect.

See also