- This article is about people from Bangladesh as an ethnic identity and nation. For information on the population of Bangladesh, see Demographics of Bangladesh.
|166 million approx.
2.28% of the world's population
|Regions with significant populations|
|Saudi Arabia||~ 1,000,000|
|United Arab Emirates||~ 1,090,000|
|United Kingdom||~ 500,000|
|United States||~ 143,619|
|South Korea||~ 13,600|
|Bengali and Indigenous minority languages|
| Islam 86% (incl. Cultural Muslims)
Christianity and others (such as Animists and non-religious) 0.4%.
|Part of a series on the|
Bangladeshi people or Bangladeshis (বাংলাদেশী) are people who are citizens of Bangladesh. Bangladesh is largely ethnically homogeneous. Indeed, its name derives from the Bengali ethno-linguistic group, which comprises 98% of the country's population. They possess a rich culture and a language of their own called Bengali (বাংলা Bangla). The Chittagong Hill Tracts, Sylhet, Mymensingh and North Bengal divisions are home to diverse indigenous peoples. Today substantial populations with Bangladeshi ancestry exist in many different parts of the world as a result of emigration, notably in the Middle East, Japan, Malaysia, United Kingdom and United States. Population estimates of the diaspora vary from a conservative 7 million to 10 million people.
The vast majority (about 98.5%) of Bangladeshis are of the Bengali ethno-linguistic group. This group also spans the neighboring Indian province of West Bengal. Minority ethnic groups include Meitei, Khasi, Santhals, Chakma, Garo (tribe), Biharis, Oraons, Mundas and Rohingyas.
Bangladesh's tribal population was enumerated at 897,828 in the 1981 census. These tribes are concentrated in the Chittagong Hill Tracts and around Mymensingh, Sylhet, and Rajshahi. They are of Sino-Tibetan descent and differ markedly in their social customs, religion, language and level of development. They speak Tibeto-Burman languages and most are Buddhist or Hindu. The four largest tribes are Chakmas, Marmas, Tipperas and Mros. Smaller groups include the Santals in Rajshahi and Dinajpur, and Khasis, Garos, and Khajons in Mymensingh and Sylhet regions.
Although Bangladesh is home to 38 different languages, Bengali (Bangla) serves as the lingua franca of the nation, with 98% of Bangladeshis fluent in Standard Bengali or Bengali dialects as their first language. English, though not having official status, is prevalent across government, law, business, media and education, and can be regarded as the de facto co-official language of Bangladesh.
The indigenous people of northern and southeastern Bangladesh speak a variety of native languages, notably Chakma and Shantali. The languages of those region are members of the Tibeto-Burman, Austroasiatic, and Dravidian families.
The majority of Bangladeshis are Muslims and constitute 89.5% of the population, followed by Hindus, who constitute 9.6%; Buddhists, Christians, those who practice other religions and those who do not constitute only 0.9% of the total population. Religion has always been a strong part of identity, but this has varied at different times. A survey in late 2003 confirmed that religion is the first choice by a citizen for self-identification. According to a government-published article, atheism is extremely rare.
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