SINDH: AN OVERVIEW
PROF. DR. S. M. ALAM & DR. M. A. KHAN
Oct 3 - 9, 2011
Sindh has a great history of 'Indus River Valley Civilization', which occurred more than 5000 BC, at Kot Diji near Khairpur and Moenjodaro near Dokri, Sindh, about 580 km from Karachi. Some remains of old traces have been left and all other things have vanished. With reference to the history of Sindh, in 711 AD (Anno Domini), Muhammad ibn Qasim led an Umayyad force of 20,000 cavalry and five catapults, aided by local leaders such as Mokah Basayah, Thakore of Bhatta, Ibn Wasayo, eventually defeated the Brahman Raja Dahir and captured the cities of Alor, Multan and Debal.
They built the grand city of Mansura, historically known as a vibrant Sindhi Muslim city. Some religious Saints and Sufis preached Islam in the Sindh province and they were Shah Latif Bhataii, near Bhait (Hala), Shahbaz Qulander (Usman Marwandi), near Sehwan and Scahal Sarmast, near Daraza in Ranipur.
Some old forts were built at Hyderabad, Umerkot, Ranipur etc. Many archaeological treasures have added in Sindh Museum, at Ranibagh, Hyderabad. Karachi has many old relics of the time of different rules of Sindh and the British Empire.
Geographically, Sindh is the third largest province of Pakistan, stretching about 579 km from north to south and 442 km (extreme) or 281 km (average) from east to west, with an area of 140,914 square kilometers (54,408 sq miles) or 14.1 million hectares (or 34.84 million acres) of Pakistani territory.
Sindh is bounded by the Thar Desert to the east, the Kirthar Mountains to the west, and the Arabian Sea in the south. In the Centre (north) is a fertile plain around the Indus River.
Sindh lies in a tropical to subtropical region. It is hot in the summer and mild to warm in winter. Temperatures frequently rise above 46 ∞C (115 ∞F) between May and August and the minimum average temperature of 2 ∞C (36∞F) occurs during December and January in the northern and higher elevated regions.
The annual rainfall averages about seven inches, falling mainly during July and September. The southwest monsoon wind begins to blow in mid-February and continues until the end of September, whereas the cool northerly wind blows during the winter months from October to January.
Sindh lies between the two monsoons-the southwest monsoon from the Indian Ocean and the northeast or retreating monsoon, deflected towards it by the Himalayan mountains-and escapes the influence of both.
The average rainfall in Sindh is only 6-7 in (15-18 cm) per year. The region's scarcity of rainfall is compensated by the inundation of the Indus twice a year, caused by the spring and summer melting of Himalayan snow and by rainfall in the monsoon season. These natural patterns have recently changed somewhat with the construction of dams and barrages on the Indus River.
The thermal equator passes through upper Sindh, where the air is generally very dry. The central Sindh's temperatures are generally lower than those of upper Sindh, but higher than those of lower Sindh. Dry hot days and cool nights are typical during the summer. The central Sindh's maximum temperature typically reaches 43-44 ∞C (109-111 ∞F).
Lower Sindh has a damper and humid maritime climate affected by the southwestern winds in summer and northeastern winds in winter, with lower rainfall than Central Sindh.
Lower Sindh's maximum temperature reaches about 35-38 ∞C (95-100 ∞F). In the Kirthar range at 1,800 m (5,900 ft) and higher at Gorakh Hill and other peaks in Dadu district, temperatures near freezing have been recorded and brief snowfall is received in the winters.
The 'River Indus', emerges from a lake named Mansarowar, which is situated at an altitude of about 17,000 feet in Tibet at the top of the extreme eastern side of Himalyan mountain range. It follows a precipitous course through Tibet and then the river runs a course through the Ladakh district of Jammu and Kashmir and then enters Northern Areas (Gilgit-Baltistan), flowing through the North in a southerly direction along the entire length of the country, to merge into the Arabian Sea near port city of Karachi in Sindh. The total length of the river is 3,180 kilometers (1,976 miles) and is Pakistan's longest river starting from Northern areas to Karachi.
Mountain Range: Sindh has small mountain range known as Kirthar Range. It is located in Sindh and Balochistan provinces. It extends from north, southward for about 300 kilometers from the Mula river in east-central Balochistan to Cape Mauri (Cape Monze) west of Karachi on the Arabian Sea.
There are some small islands of Sindh and named as Baba Bhit Island, Bundal Island, Buddo Island, Churma Island, Khiprinwala Island, Salahabad Island etc. These are located on the offshore sea of Karachi.
Lakes of Sindh: There are two most important lakes in Sindh and these are Keenjhar lake near Thatta and Manchar lake in the west of Sehwan, Dadu. Sindh has beautiful Kirthar National Park in Dadu district. A small lake is Haleji near Karachi.
Roads and Rails: Sindh has metal roads in all the main cities and connected with the cities of other provinces with roads and rails. Goods and other products are supplied towards upcountry by containers and rails. The main roads are superhighway and national highways, which run from Karachi to upcountry.
Deserts of Sindh: Sindh Province has a great desert named ėThar Desert'. The Thar desert lies between Indus River and Run of Kutch. It covers an area of 2.65 million hectares in Tharparkar, Nawabshah, Khairpur, Sukkur and Sanghar districts. Some of the major towns bordering the desert are Naukot, Mithi, Nagar Parkar, Chachro, Umerkot, Islamkot. The area comprises of sand dunes of 20-200 meters in elevation. Climate of the desert is very arid with annual rainfall between 100- 300 mm. The rainwater flowing down the sand hills does not move as runoff, but is absorbed in the surface ground. It is subsequently lost largely in the atmosphere by evaporation and transpiration and the rest percolates down in the ground in small quantities. Cultivation to a limited extent is done on rainwater. The crops grown on rainwater are bajra till and castor. Maximum temperature up to 45oC is recorded in May-June, while January and February are the coldest months (2-5oC).
Wind erosion is a characteristic feature of the Thar desert. The movement of wind determines sand dunes formation in summer, which is a natural phenomenon. Illicit cutting and heavy grazing of trees/shrubs are accelerated fast the erosion scenario.
In the Thar area, only those places, where groundwater for human and cattle consumption is available are populated. The economy of Thar depends largely on grazing. Many tracts are uninhabitable mainly for want of drinking water. Coal deposits have been discovered in Thar and the reserves have been estimated to be 184 billion tons.
Mangroves are normally salt-tolerant trees, which flourish in inter tidal zones of sheltered tropical shores, islands, estuaries and bags of tropical zones worldwide. Mangrove, a large tropical evergreen tree generally grows on muddy tidal flats and along the lines. Mangrove forests are most abundant in the continents of tropical Asia, Africa and the islands of Pacific.
The mangrove fruit is of a conical reddish-brown berry shape. Mangroves help protect coastlines from degradation, storm damage and wave action by acting as buffers and by catching alluvial materials.
Mangroves are used for timber, charcoal, firewood, pulp, tannin, lignin, and cellulose, wax production and for many other uses. In coastal areas of Pakistan, an estimated 0.15 million people depend on this ecosystem for their livelihood and harvest its natural resources for various purposes such as fishing, camel browsing, buffalo grazing and wood collection, honey collection, medicines etc.
Flora and fauna: The province is mostly arid with scant vegetation except for the irrigated Indus Valley. The dwarf palm, Acacia Rupestris (kher), and Tecomella undulata (lohirro) trees are typical of the western hill region. In the Indus valley, the Acacia nilotica (babul) is the most dominant and occurs in thick forests along the Indus banks.
The Azadirachta indica (neem), Zizyphus vulgaris (ber), Tamarix orientalis (jujuba lai) and Capparis aphylla (kirir) are among the more common trees. The coastal strip and the creeks abound in semi-aquatic and aquatic plants, and the inshore Indus delta islands have forests of Avicennia tomentosa (timmer) and Ceriops candolleana trees. Water lilies grow in abundance in the numerous lake and ponds, particularly in the lower Sindh region
Small pockets exist also in deltaic swamps of other small rivers, which meet the Arabian Sea in the province of Balochistan. Mangroves thrive on a continuous supply of fresh river water, but lately due to the construction of dams, a lot of water is diverted into smaller reservoirs and irrigation canals, before it reaches the delta, thus decreasing the discharge of fresh water.
Among the wild animals, the Sindh ibex (sareh), Blackbuck, wild sheep (urial or gadh) and black bear are found in the western rocky range, where the Leopard and Asiatic Cheetah are now rare. The large tiger cat or fishing cat of the eastern desert region is also disappearing. Deer occur in the lower rocky plains and in the eastern region, as do the striped hyena (charakh), jackal, fox, porcupine, common gray mongoose, and hedgehog.
The Sindhi phekari, ped lynx or caracal cat, is found in some areas. Phartho (hog deer) and wild bear occur particularly in the central inundation belt. There are a variety of bats, lizards, and reptiles, including the cobra, lundi (viper), and the mysterious Sindh krait of the Thar region, which is supposed to suck the victim's breath in his sleep.
Crocodiles are rare and inhabit only the backwaters of the Indus, eastern Nara channel and Karachi backwater. Besides a large variety of marine fish, the plumbeous dolphin, the beaked dolphin or blue whale, and a variety of skates frequent the seas along the Sindh coast. The pallo (sable fish), a marine fish, ascends the Indus annually from February to April. The Indus river dolphin is among the most endangered species in Pakistan and is found in the part of the Indus river in northern Sindh. Hog deer and wild bear occur particularly in the central inundation belt.
Between July and November when the monsoon winds blow onshore from the ocean, giant Olive Ridley turtles lay their eggs along the seaward side. The turtles are protected species. After the mothers lay and leave them buried under the sands the SWD and WWF officials take the eggs and protect them until they are hatched to protect them from predators. Crocodiles are rare and inhabit only the backwaters of the Indus, the eastern Nara channel and some population of Marsh crocodiles can be very easily seen in the waters of Haleji Lake near Karachi. Besides a large variety of marine fish, the dolphin, the beaked dolphin, blue whale and a variety of skates frequent the seas along the Sindh coast.
The 1998 Census of Pakistan indicated a population of 30.4 million. Just under half of the population are urban dwellers, mainly found in Karachi, Hyderabad, Sukkur, Mirpurkhas, Nawabshah District, Umerkot and Larkana.
Sindhi is the sole official language of Sindh since the 19th century. According to the 1998 Population Census of Pakistan, Sindhi-speaking households make up 59.7 per cent of Sindh's population; Urdu-speaking households make up 21.1 per cent; Punjabi 7 per cent; Pashto 4.2 per cent; Balochi 2 per cent; Saraiki one per cent and other languages 5 per cent.
Other languages include Gujarati, Memoni, Kutchi, Khowar, Thari, Persian/Dari, Luri and Brahui. At present, this language speaking strength has been changed very much.
Sindh's population is mainly Muslim (91.32 per cent), and Sindh is also home to nearly all (93 per cent) of Pakistan's Hindus, who form 7.5 per cent of the province's population. A large number of Hindus migrated to India during the Partition of India in response to the influx of Muhajirs from India.
Karachi is the capital of Sindh. From the administrative point of view, the Sindh province has been divided into 5 Divisions and in 24 Districts.
FIVE DIVISIONS OF SINDH
DIVISIONS AREA (KM2) . Hyderabad 48,670 Hyderabad Karachi 3,528 Karachi Larkana 15,543 Larkana Mirpus Khas 38,421 Mirpur Khas Sukkur 34,751 Sukkur THERE ARE 24 DISTRICTS IN SINDH: DISTRICTS AREA (KM2) POPULATION (1998) Badin 6,726 1,136,044 Dadu 19,070 1,688,811 Ghotki 6,083 970,549 Hyderabad 5,519 2,891,488 Jacobabad 5,278 1,425,572 Jamshoro - - Karachi 3,527 9,856,318 Kashmore 2,592 662,462 Khairpur 15,910 1,546,587 Larkana 7,423 1,927,066 Matiari 1,417 515,331 Mirpurkhas 2,925 1,569.030 Nausharo Firoze 2,945 1,087,571 Benazirabad 4,502 1,071,533 Qambar & Shahdad Kot - - Sanghar 10,728 1,453,028 Shaikarpur 2,512 880,438 Sukkur 5,165 908,373 Tando Allahyar - - Tando Muhammad Khan 1,733 447,215 Tharparkar 19,638 914,291 Thatta 17,355 1,113,194 Umerkot - 663,100
LIST OF MAJOR CITIES IN SINDH
RANK CITY DISTRICT POPULATION 1 Karachi Karachi 13,205,339 2 Hyderabad Hyderabad 1,578,367 3 Sukkur Sukkur 493,438 4 Larkana Larkana 456,544 5 Nawabshah Shaheed Benazirabad 272,598 6 Mirpur Khas Mirpur Khas 242,887 7 Jacobabad Jacobabad 200,815 8 Shikarpur Shikarpur 177,682 9 Dadu Dadu 146,179 10 Tando Adam Sanghar 145,719 Source: World Gazetteer 2010
Cities and towns of Sindh include Dadu, Daharki, Diplo, Ghotki, Hala, Jamshoro, Kashmore, Khairpur, Kotri, Matiari, Matli, Mehar, Mehrabpur, Mithi, Moro, Nasarpur, Naushahro Feroze (Padidan), Raharki, Ranipur Ratodero, Rohri, Sakrand, Sanghar, Sehwan, Sekhat, Shahdadkot, Sita, Sobhodero, Sujawal, Tando Adam Khan, Tando Allahyar, Thatta, and Umarkot
EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS: Sindh government has established pre-primary, primary schools, middle, secondary schools, vocational, polytechnic, inter and degree colleges, professional colleges, and universities all over Sindh. In addition, madarsahs and mosques are also operational.
YEAR LITERACY RATE (IN %) 1972 30.2 1981 37.5 1998 45.29 2008 60.7 2011 67.50
QUALIFICATION URBAN RURAL TOTAL ENROLLMENT RATIO (%) 14,839,862 15,600,031 30,439,893 Below Primary 1,984,089 3,332,166 5,316,255 100.00 Primary 3,503,691 5,687,771 9,191,462 82.53 Middle 3,073,335 2,369,644 5,442,979 52.33 Matriculation 2,847,769 2,227,684 5,075,453 34.45 Intermediate 1,473,598 1,018,682 2,492,280 17.78 BA, BSc. degrees 106,847 53,040 159,887 9.59 MA, MSc. degrees 1,320,747 552,241 1,872,988 9.07 Diploma, Certificate 440,743 280,800 721,543 2.91 Other qualifications 89,043 78,003 167,046 0.54
MAJOR PUBLIC AND PRIVATE EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTES OF SINDH INCLUDE
Adamjee Government Science College, Aga Khan University, APIIT, Applied Economics Research Centre, Bahria University, Baqai Medical University, Chandka Medical College Larkana, College of Digital Sciences, College of Physicians & Surgeons Pakistan, Commecs Institute of Business and Emerging Sciences, D. J. Science College, Dawood College of Engineering and Technology, Defence Authority Degree College for Men, Dow International Medical College, Dow University of Health Sciences, Fatima Jinnah Dental College, Federal Urdu University, Ghulam Muhammad Mahar Medical College, Sukkur, Government College for Men Nazimabad, Government College of Commerce & Economics, Government College of Technology, Karachi, Government National College (Karachi), Greenwich University (Karachi), Hamdard University, Hussain Ebrahim Jamal Research Institute of Chemistry, Indus Valley Institute of Art and Architecture, Institute of Business Administration, Karachi Institute of Business Administration, Sukkar Institute of Business Management, Institute of Industrial Electronics Engineering, Institute of Sindhology, Iqra University, Islamia Science College (Karachi), Isra University, Jinnah Medical & Dental College, Jinnah Polytechnic Institute, Jinnah Post Graduate Medical Centre, Jinnah University for Women, KANUPP Institute of Nuclear Power Engineering, Liaquat University of Medical & Health Sciences, Mehran University of Engineering and Technology, Mohammad Ali Jinnah University, National Academy of Performing Arts, National University of Sciences and Technology, NED University of Engineering and Technology, Ojha Institute of Chest Diseases, PAF Institute of Aviation Technology, Pakistan Navy Engineering College, Pakistan Shipowners' College, Pakistan Steel Cadet College, Peoples Medical College for Girls Nawabshah, Provincial Institute of Teachers Education Nawabshah, Quaid-e-Awam University of Engineering, Science and Technology, Nawabshah, Rana Liaquat Ali Khan Government College of Home Economics, Rehan College of Education, Saint Patrick's College, Karachi, Shah Abdul Latif Bhitai University, Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Medical College, Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology, Sindh Agriculture University, Tandojam, Sindh, Medical College, Superior College of Science Hyderabad, Sindh Muslim Law College, Sir Syed Government Girls College, Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology, St. Joseph's College, Sukkur Institute of Science & Technology, Textile Institute of Pakistan, University of Karachi, University of Sindh, PIA Training Centre Karachi, Government High School Ranipur etc.
COMMUNICATION FACILITY: There are telephone exchange in every city and town. Radio stations are present in all the big cities and they are giving almost 24 hours service. Home and external services are also operating.
PRINT MEDIA: Numerous daily news are published from major cities. Weekly magazines, forth-nightlies, and monthly magazines are also published from the cities.
Sindh is Pakistan's most natural gas producing province. Sindh has two seaports located in Karachi (Kemari and Port Qasim).
GDP: Sindh has the 2nd largest economy in Pakistan. Sindh's GDP per capita was $1,400 in 2010, which is 50 per cent more than the rest of the nation or 35 per cent more than the national average. Historically, Sindh's contribution to Pakistan's GDP has been between 30 per cent to 32.7 per cent. Its share in the service sector has ranged from 21 per cent to 27.8 per cent and in the agriculture sector from 21.4 per cent to 27.7 per cent.
Performance wise, its best sector is the manufacturing sector, where its share is from 36.7 per cent to 46.5 per cent. Since 1972, Sindh's GDP has expanded by 3.6 times. Endowed with coastal access, Sindh is a major centre of economic activity in Pakistan and has a highly diversified economy ranging from heavy industry and finance centered in and around Karachi to a substantial agricultural base along the Indus. Manufacturing includes machine products, cement, plastics, and various other goods.
AGRICULTURE IN SINDH: Sindh represents 18 per cent of the total geographical area of Pakistan which is 79,61 million hectares. Out of this, nearly 39 per cent or 5.45 million hectares (or 13.45 million acres) are cultivable. About 9.9 per cent is culturable wastes and 0.57 million hectares or 4.8 per cent is under forestry. The remaining 8.65 million hectares or 2.2 per cent is not available for cultivation. Again of the total cultivated areas of 5.45 million hectares, nearly 57 per cent are current fallow, which is the highest in the country and reflects on the poor water availability , mismanagement and ill-practices of the irrigation systems in the province.
It is stated that out of the salt free i.e. cultivated or cropped areas, which are 3.079 million hectares or 57 per cent about 2.321 million hectares or 42 per cent are salt-affected. This included 1.342 million hectares or 57 per cent of highly saline; 0.673 million hectares (or 2.9 per cent) of permeable saline-sodic. Similarly, 0.277 million hectares or 12 per cent of sodic soils.
The experts have estimated that fertile lands of Pakistan are becoming saline at the rate of 40,000 hectares annually. This shows that 109 hectares of our land is converting into saline daily. This situation is very alarming and particularly in Sindh, because lands are becoming saline more in Sindh than the other provinces.
The agricultural progress of Sindh province is totally linked with the supply of irrigation water from the river Indus. It comprises of three barrages i.e. Sukkur, Guddu and Kotri with gross command area of about six million hectares.
Arid zones of Sindh include Thar region (Tharparkar and Umerkot) and Nara region (Sanghar, Khairpue, Ghotki sand Sukkur ) in the east and Katchho and Kohistan regions (Dadu and Thatta) in the west.
THERE ARE TWO CROP SEASONS: one is Kharif and another is Rabi. In these seasons both summer and winter crops are grown.
The farmers are playing a very important role in their daily life. But, they are getting low production. The main reason for low production is the use of old and traditional methods of cultivation by the farmers.
The government has established Agriculture Department for the development of agriculture. Some very important agricultural institutions are functioning in Tando Jam, (District Hyderabad) for this purpose. There is a Sindh Agriculture University, Tando Jam. Sindh Government agricultural institutes are established at Hyderabad, Tandojam, Mirpur Khas, Badin, Sakrand etc. and these institutes are helping farmers in the growing and improvement of agricultural crops.
There are also federal agriculture institutes, which are helping in the agriculture of Sindh by evolving new wheat, rice, sugarcane, and cotton varieties.
Plant Protection Department is situated at Karachi. The responsibility of this department is to protect crops from germs and pests.
There is no scarcity of land in the province. Most of the land in Sindh is left barren because of non-availability of sufficient water. There are several ways to get water for irrigation.
1. A source of water is tube-well, besides rain. The electricity is used to draw water from the wells. This method is not very successful in Sindh because the water in most of the well is saltiest, which is not suitable for irrigation purpose. The rest areas where water is cleared, is used for agriculture.
2. Another source of water is canal. We have dug many canals starting from the banks of river Indus to irrigate the lands. Sindh receives about 120 million cubic meters of salts annually from the up streams of its water course. In such an environment, water logging arising from insufficient management of canal irrigation and inadequate drainage practices aggravate the salinity problem by raising the ground water table.
The Economic development of Sindh largely depends on the progress and growth of agriculture sector. The province contributes significantly towards overall national agriculture production in major crops.
Sindh grows a variety of field and horticultural crops. Wheat, rice, cotton, and sugarcane are the major field crops, which constitute nearly 75 per cent of the total cropped areas, while mango, banana and chilies are the major horticultural crops. Sindh produces 35 per cent paddy, 28 per cent sugarcane, 25 per cent cotton and 21 per cent wheat of the country. Among the horticultural crops, Sindh produces 80 per cent banana, 35 per cent mangoes, dates 45 per cent, guava 50 per cent and 88 per cent of chillies. The other minor crops and vegetables grown in Sindh are bajra, maize, guar, millet, jowar, ginger, onion, garlic, spinach, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, carrot, beetroot, lettuce, tomato, radish, khol rabi, celery, turnip, cabbage, mushroom, sugar beet, bean, pea., pepper, falsa, chikko, papaya, watermelon, kakri cucumber, oilseed crops such as rapeseed, mustard, groundnut, sesamum, soybean, linseed, sunflower, safflower etc.
Of the total cropped areas of 3.06 million hectares for the year 2008-09, almost 50 per cent of the area was under food crops i.e wheat, rice maize and sorghum, millet and barley, 27 per cent cash crops such as sugarcane and cotton and remaining were under fodder, pulses, condiments, oilseeds, fruits and vegetables. The Sindh Seed Corporation has the responsibility to supply various types of crops seeds to concerned departments for supply to farmers all over the Province. Different types of flowers and ornamental plants grown are roses, marigold, petunia, dahlia, phlox, gerbera, calendula, cineraria, coleus, carnation, snapdragon, etc. Different types of fodders such as berseem, lucern, dhancha, maize etc. are also grown in various locality of the province for the cattle.
Some popular tree species grown abundantly are babul (kikar), shisham, lignum, prosopis, siras, neem, coconut palm, bottle palm, life plant, drumstick, acacia, guava, sunhemp, jaman, sambul, China rose, withania, sunhemp, senna, aloe vera, mulberry, fig, lantana, curry patta, lesura, lemon, safaida, khajur, kaner, piloo, tulsi, custard apple, banyan, lantana, asoke tree, vinca, jasmine, dumdum etc.
Sindh has prominent place in the production of livestock, fishery and poultry. The livestock found in Sindh are cow, calf, bull, heifer, buffalo, goat, sheep, camel, donkey, horse, mule, ass, duck, turkey and poultry etc.
Livestock provides the most essential items of human diet like meat, milk and eggs. It also supplies wool, hides, skins, bones, hair, casings, and blood for industrial use within the country and for export as well. It also provides organic fertilizer (dung) for human population and agricultural activities.
Fishery is another important produce of Sindh .The province has a coastal belt of about 330 kilometers. Different types of fish are catches in the coastal and inland water. The total annual production is about 300,000 tons from both sources. It is considered as one of the most important economic activities along the coast of Sindh. Fishing is the most common profession of the people particularly those living along the coastal belts of the provinces of Sindh. The fishing crafts include making of mechanical sailboats, row boats, trawlers and gill nets etc.