Punjabi: Chalay nal singh ni onthay


English - USAian
I'm a teaching assistant for an undergraduate class which requires students to collect items of folk speech or folk practice from their friends and classmates. When an item of folk speech comes from a language usually written in a script other than Latin, the student is supposed to present both the usual script and a Romanisation. One student submitted this:

پاگل لوگوں سينگون كی ضرورت ﻧﮩيں ﮨﮯ
Chalay nal singh ni onthay​

I don't know much Urdu, but I know enough to read and recognise the top line… which is clearly not the bottom. The saying is apparently from Pakistan, but I can't figure out what language the Romanisation is. Is it recognisable to any of you?
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  • Pathawi

    English - USAian
    I think I've figured out why the two don't match up: I don't believe the student speaks any South Asian language—which is fine; that's not a requirement of the assignment. I just put her English translation into Google Translate for Urdu, and got the form we see in Perso-Arabic script. She must not have realised that there were multiple languages spoken in Pakistan, or else she just decided to gamble that the most representative Pakistani language for Westerners would be the language of the proverb.


    Senior Member
    The top line in Urdu reads..
    Paagal logonN (ko) siinNgoN kii zarurat nahiiN hai

    Bottom line is in Punjabi.