Pakistan and Bangladesh

When the British partitioned the Indian subcontinent, they created a nation called Pakistan for the Muslims in then region. Pakistan consisted of two regions – West Pakistan and East Pakistan – separated by 1,100 miles of Indian territory. East Pakistan seceded from the nation, causing a civil war. India joined the conflict on the side of the East Pakistanis. In 1971, East Pakistan became the independent nation of Bangladesh. Bangladesh had many reasons for separating from Pakistan:

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  • Bangladesh is only one-fifth the size of Pakistan, it has a larger population.
  • The two nations are very different. Pakistan is a mountainous nation with many ethnic groups, while most people in Bangladesh share the same culture. 98% of the people of Bangladesh speak Bengali, yet less than ten percent of Pakistanis speak Urdu, their official language.
  • By 1970, East Pakistan paid more taxes than West Pakistan, but the government was dominated by West Pakistanis.
  • A violent flood in 1970 killed more than 300,000 Pakistanis. Many people in East Pakistan accused the government of delaying shipments of food and relief supplies to the victims.

Bangladesh faces some of the greatest challenges of any nation in the world. It is the ninth most populated nation in the world. Bangladesh has half the number of people of the United States, but they are squeezed into an area less than the size of Wisconsin. Bangladesh is located on a delta formed by the Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers. The rivers often flood, killing many people. Crowded conditions and natural disasters have made famine, or great hunger, a common problem in Bangladesh.

  To cite this page (MLA):

Dowling, Mike. "Pakistan and Bangladesh at". Updated July 3, 2014. Web. Date of Access. <>