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A tehsil or tahsil/tahasil, also known as taluka (or taluq/taluk) or mandal, is an administrative division of India, Pakistan and some historical states of South Asia. It is an area of land with a city or town that serves as its administrative centre, with possible additional towns, and usually a number of villages. The terms in India have replaced earlier geographical terms, such as pargana, pergunnah and thannah, used under the Delhi Sultanate and the British Raj.
As an entity of local government, the tahsil office (Panchayat Samiti) exercises certain fiscal and administrative power over the villages and municipalities within its jurisdiction. It is the ultimate executive agency for land records and related administrative matters. The chief official is called the tahsildar or, less officially, the talukdar or taluka muktiarkar. In some instances, tehsils are called "blocks" (Panchayat union blocks).
Although they may on occasion share the same area with a subdivision of a revenue divisions, known as revenue blocks, the two are distinct. For example, Raipur district in Chhattisgarh state is administratively divided into 13 tehsils and 15 revenue blocks. Nevertheless, the two are often conflated.
Tehsil/Tahsil and Taluka and their variants are used as English words without further translation. Since these terms are unfamiliar to English speakers outside of the subcontinent, the word county has sometimes been provided as a gloss, on the basis that a tahsil, like a county, is an administrative unit hierarchically above the local city, town, or village, but subordinate to a larger state or province. India and Pakistan have two (or more, at least in parts of India) intermediate levels of hierarchy – the district and the tahsil, both of which are sometimes translated as county. In neither case is the analogy very exact.
In Pakistan, the term tehsil is generally used except in Sindh where the term taluko (Sindhi: تعلقو) predominates, e.g., Larkana Taluko. The tehsil is the second-lowest tier of local government in Pakistan; each tehsil is part of a larger District (zila/zillah (Urdu: ضلع)). Each tehsil is subdivided into a number of union councils.
In Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, tehsil has the same meaning as above, except in Malakand Division, where a district (zila/zillah) has two or more subdivisions and a subdivision has two or more tehsils. The subdivisions in Malakand Division are the same as tehsils in the rest of the country.
Throughout India, there is a three-tier local body/Panchayath Raj system within the state. Tehsil/taluka/mandal is the second layer of this system. Above them are the districts/zilla and below them are the gram panchayats/villages.
In India, the term tehsil is used to some extent in all states. In some, such as Gujarat, Karnataka and Maharashtra, taluka is more common. The word mandal is used predominately in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. In Andhra Pradesh, the "Mandal Parishad" is the elected governing body of the mandal, and the tehsildar is chief of executive of the mandal. In Tamil Nadu, vattam denotes a subdivision of a district.
- Taluqdar, a land holder and tax collector
- Tehsildar, a revenue administrative officer
- Village accountant
- The main purpose of the census is to provide data on size and composition of population of India and its geographic divisions, i.e., population of different states and union territories, districts, blocks and villages. Sharma, A. K. (2012). Population and Society. New Delhi: Concept Publishing Company. p. 53. ISBN 978-81-8069-818-7.
- Rahman, Syed Amanur, ed. (2006). The Beautiful India: Chhatisgarh. New Delhi: Reference Press. p. 34]. ISBN 978-81-8405-017-2.
- Taluka Municipal Administration Larkana - Government of Sindh
- 2001 maps provides maps of social, economic and demographic data of India in 2001