The Baloch or Baluch are the people who mainly inhabit the Balochistan region of the southeastern-most edge of the Iranian plateau in Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and the Arabian Peninsula. Majority of Balochi people speak the Balochi language, which belongs to the northwestern group of Iranian languages. Other languages commonly spoken by the Baloch people are local languages including Jadgal, Urdu, Brahui, Persian, and Arabic. Its tribes are identified based on their language, race, and culture. The origin of the name "Baloch" is not known though some writers said that it came from the word "Sanskrit" meaning strength. Significant numbers of Baloch people are found in the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Turkmenistan, Iran, Oman, Afghanistan, and Saudi Arabia.
Baloch People In Different Countries
Pakistan is a country in South Asia, and it hosts a Baloch population of about 6,800,000. Balochistan is considered as the largest population with the highest poverty rate, illiteracy, infant mortality rate, and maternal mortality rate in the country; this is because most of the population lack adequate amenities, leaving the region underdeveloped. There are numerous languages spoken by Balochi people in Pakistan. Balochi is the most spoken language of Balochistan constituting 54.8%, followed by Pashto, Sindhi, Punjabi, Saraiki, Urdu, English, and others. The Balochi people in Pakistan have different religions whereby the majority of them are Muslims comprising of 98.75% followed by Hindus and Christians. Other religions include Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Sikhism, and Jainism.
Iran is a country in Western Asia comprising of about 2,000,000 Iranian Balochi population who majorly reside in the Sistan and Baluchestan provinces. Balochi people in Iran occupy the region considered as the poorest and most underdeveloped region of the country. Iranian Balochis mainly speak Rakhshani Balochi and Persian. A large number of them are Muslims; the majority belong to Sunni Islam and minority belongs to Shia Islam.
United Arab Emirates
The population of Baloch in the United Arab Emirates is about 468,000, which is 5.08% of the UAE’s population. Dubai, Sharjah, and Abu Dhabi are the regions with significant Baloch populations. The majority of UAE’s Baloch people speak Balochi. Other languages that some of them speak include Arabic, Persian, Sindhi, and Saraiki.
Baloch people have a number of cultural activities since they live in different countries.
Balochi women cover their heads with scarfs. They use thick red color clothes called “Burga” to cover their faces. On the other hand, men usually wear long shirts with loose pants accompanied by a hat on their heads. In addition, women have powerful skills in embroidery and they decorate their attires with different colors and different designs. Women‘s tradition wear includes gold ornaments such as heavy earrings, jewelry, bracelets, and necklaces. Women make weave rugs for their own use and for sale.
Marrying from another community is strongly prohibited in the Baloch community. Divorce is allowed when a woman is barren and a widow goes back to her home when her husband dies; she is free to get married again if her family accepts. Property inheritance goes from the father to son.