Punjabi people ( (Gurmukhi), (Shahmukhi)), also spelled Panjabi people; are a clan of Indo-Aryan peoples, originating from the Punjab, found between eastern Pakistan and northern India. Punjab literally means the land of five waters (Persian: panj (“five”) āb (“waters”)). Punjab is often referred to as the breadbasket in both Pakistan and India. The pinnacle of the power for any local Punjabi population came in the later part of the 18th century when Sikh Empire was established by the Ranjit Singh who conquered almost whole of Kashmir along with modern day Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and annexed it into greater Punjab region. The coalescence of the various tribes, castes and the inhabitants of the Punjab into a broader common “Punjabi” identity initiated from the onset of the 18th century CE. Prior to that the sense and perception of a common “Punjabi” ethno-cultural identity and community did not exist, even though the majority of the various communities of the Punjab had long shared linguistic, cultural and racial commonalities. Traditionally, Punjabi identity is primarily linguistic, geographical and cultural. Its identity is independent of race, color, creed or religion, and refers to those for whom the Punjabi language(s) is the first language or recognizable language and those who reside in the Punjab region and associate with its population. Integration and assimilation are important parts of Punjabi culture, since Punjabi identity is not based tribal connections or race. More or less all Punjabis share the same cultural background. Traditionally, the Punjabi people was a heterogeneous group and was subdivided into a number of clans called biradari (literally meaning “brotherhood”) or tribes, with each person bound to a clan. However, Punjabi identity also included those who did not belong to any of the historical tribes. With the passage of time tribal structures are coming to an end and are being replaced with more cohesive and holistic society. That is why community building and group cohesiveness form the new pillars of Punjabi society.