Bolan Pass depicted on a 1910 advertisement card for Liebig Meat Extract Company
|Elevation||1,793.4 m (5,884 ft)|
|Range||Toba Kakar Range|
Strategically located, traders, invaders, and nomadic tribes have also used it as a gateway to and from South Asia. The Bolān Pass is an important pass on the Baluch frontier, connecting Jacobabad and Sibi with Quetta, which has always occupied an important place in the history of British campaigns in Afghanistan.
Traditionally, the Brahui of the Baluchi ethnic group are in charge of the law and order situation through the Pass area. This tribe is still living in present day Balochistan in Pakistan, and they still preserve their Dravidian Language.
In 1837, threatened by a possible Russian invasion of South Asia via the Khyber and Bolān Passes, a British envoy was sent to Kabul to gain support of the Emir, Dost Mohammed. In February 1839, the British Army under Sir John Keane took 12,000 men through the Bolān Pass and entered Kandahar, which the Afghan Princes had abandoned; from there they would go on to attack and overthrow Ghazni.
Bolān Pass railway
From Sibi the line runs south-west, skirting the hills to Rindli, and originally followed the course of the Bolān stream to its head on the plateau. The destructive action of floods, however, led to the abandonment of this alignment, and the railway now follows the Mashkaf valley (which debouches into the plains close to Sibi), and is carried from near the head of the Mashkaf to a junction with the Bolān at Machh. An alternative route from Sibi to Quetta was found in the Harnai valley to the N.E. of Sibi, the line starting in exactly the opposite direction to that of the Bolān and entering the hills at Nari. The Harnai route, although longer, is the one adopted for all ordinary traffic, the Bolān loop being reserved for emergencies. At the Khundilani gorge of the Bolān route conglomerate cliffs, which rise to a height of 800 ft., enclose the valley. At Siri Bolān the passage between the limestone rocks hardly admits of three persons riding abreast. The temperature of the pass in summer is very high, whereas in winter, near its head, the cold is extreme, and the ice-cold wind rushing down the narrow outlet becomes destructive to life. Since 1877, when the Quetta agency was founded, the pass was secured by the British Indian Army from militias of Baluch tribesmen (chiefly Marris).
- Singh, Sarina (2004). Pakistan & the Karakoram Highway (6th ed.). Lonely Planet. p. 112. ISBN 978-0-86442-709-0.
- Singh, Sarina (2004). Pakistan & the Karakoram Highway (6th ed.). Lonely Planet. p. 113. ISBN 978-0-86442-709-0.
||This article is largely based on an article in the out-of-copyright Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, which was produced in 1911. It should be brought up to date to reflect subsequent history or scholarship (including the references, if any). When you have completed the review, replace this notice with a simple note on this article's talk page. (January 2011)|