The land of five rivers
|Fields of Punjab|
Punjab is a state in the northwest of the Republic of India. The word Punjab is a combination of the Persian words پنج panj (five) and آب āb (water), and thus the (land of) five rivers . The five rivers are the Beas, Sutlej, Ravi River, Chenab River, and Jhelum River. With just 1.5% of India’s land area, Punjab produces 20% of the country’s wheat and 12% of its rice. It provides 60% of the Central government’s reserve stocks of wheat and 40% of its reserves of rice, the country’s buffer against starvation. Punjab’s amazing productivity made it possible for India to feed most of its growing population that tripled from 350 million when the country became independent in 1947 to about 1.2 billion people today. Punjab is one of the most fertile regions on earth and is called “India’s bread–basket” for a reason.