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Pasighat is located in Arunachal Pradesh
Location in Arunachal Pradesh, India
Coordinates: 28°04′N 95°20′E / 28.07°N 95.33°E / 28.07; 95.33Coordinates: 28°04′N 95°20′E / 28.07°N 95.33°E / 28.07; 95.33
Country  India
State Arunachal Pradesh
District East Siang
 • Total 14.60 km2 (5.64 sq mi)
Elevation 153 m (502 ft)
Population (2001)
 • Total 21,972
 • Density 1,504.9/km2 (3,898/sq mi)
 • Official English
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)
PIN 791102
Telephone code 0368
Vehicle registration AR-09

Pasighat is the headquarters of East Siang district in the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. Situated at 155 meters, with its scenic splendours, Pasighat is Arunachal's oldest town.[1]


Pasighat was founded in 1911 A.D. by the British as a gateway to administrative convenience of the greater Abor Hills and the north area in general. Primarily there were settlements of Pasi and Minyong communities who are still living in the villages in and around Pasighat. Year 2011 (January) marked 100 years of its existence and this occasion was celebrated in the DSA Ground (in February last week) after having extended the function for more than half a dozen times, thereby creating a mass public irritation. (Supplement: DARUNG KALING).

Cognizance of Pasighat emerged due to the Anglo-Abor War that was fought in 1912. This necessitated the first ever administrative headquarters being established here with an Assistant Political Officer posted. In the post-independent Era, Pasighat is credited with the first Airfield (near Paglek, P.I. Line) established in 1946. The first Agricultural Institute in Arunachal Pradesh was also established at Pasighat in 1950. Other forms of later infrastructural development include the famous, (1) General Hospital (estb. 1954, although some claim it as old as the town itself), (2) Co-operative society Ltd (1957), (3) Nurse Training Centre (affiliated to General Hospital), (4) The first ever College in Arunachal Pradesh - Jawaharlal Nehru College (established: July 4, 1964) and also (5) the first ever All India Radio Station in the State in 1966.

The early proponents for the shifting of capital from Shillong (the then NEFA), underlined Pasighat as the obvious choice under the new preference. One of the strong reasons given by the officials was the above leading relative infrastructural development in the whole of the state. However, because of the then over-crafty chumps and the self-crowned top dogs, the privilege was lost with a serious distaste to the present capital Itanagar. Since that catastrophe of 1974, Pasighat has failed to yield its lost tempo of modernization; nevertheless it has embarked as the new intellectual hub of the whole state. (Supplement: DARUNG KALING)

The only renown development in Pasighat that came after the 1974 catastrophe was in the form of the College Of Horticulture and Forestry Central Agriculture University established on March 7, 2001. (Supplement: DARUNG KALING)


Pasighat is located at 28°04′N 95°20′E / 28.07°N 95.33°E / 28.07; 95.33.[2] It has an average elevation of 153 metres (501 ft). The area experiences tropical humid climate during summer and dry mild winter. The place is known for receiving the highest rainfall in a single year. In fact Pasighat and the area around it receive heavy rainfall every year during monsoon season starting from May until September. The unique trough like features surrounded by high hills on all three sides make this place ideal for attracting rain bearing cloud which come in from the Assam plain. The rain bearing wind gets obstructed by the hills and brings heavy downpour. Winter is marked by cold dry local seasonal wind which blows throughout the winter. This factor contributes in making this place fog-free even in winter. The Brahmaputra emerges from the foothills under the name of Dihang or Siang. It enters India as Dihang, west of Sadiya town in Arunachal Pradesh. Flowing south-west, it receives its main left bank tributaries, viz. Dibang and Lohit; thereafter, it is known as the Brahmaputra. Then it races across the Pasighat (north of Assam) heading for the Assam plains as the mighty Brahmaputra.


Climate data for Pasighat
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 26.5
Average low °C (°F) 9.3
Rainfall mm (inches) 42.8
Avg. rainy days 3.7 7.0 10.2 13.0 13.8 19.0 22.0 15.5 15.0 7.6 2.1 2.2 131.1
Source: India Meteorological Department


Agriculture is the main occupation of local people. Rice is the main food crop produced in the area. There are several large tea gardens in the vicinity of the town which attract workers from all over the region. Lumbering was a big sustaining industry till the Supreme Court clamped down on the industry during the nineties. There is also a bit of tourism in Pasighat, being the oldest town in Arunachal Pradesh. Agriculture, horticulture and tourism continue to be the main source of economy for the town.


The Vivekananda Kendriya Vidyalaya school in Pasighat

As of 2001 India census,[3] Pasighat had a population of 21,972. Males constitute 53% of the population and females 47%. Pasighat has an average literacy rate of 64%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 71%, and female literacy is 56%. In Pasighat, 15% of the population is under 6 years of age.

Pasighat is predominantly inhabited by the Adi people who are known for their colourful Ponung dance and war dance called Taapu. Pasighat is also ideal for adventure sports activities. The Daying Ering Wildlife Sanctuary is 13 km away and is worth visiting. The archaeological site of Malinithan (100 km) is linked to the legend of Lord Krishna and his wife Rukmini. The dismembered head of Sati (Parvati) is said to have fallen at Akashiganga (100 km according to ancient Hindu myths). This is a highly sacred place for Vaishnavites.

Around 12 km there is a waterfall which is a tourist attraction among the teenage. A 700 m bridge is along the Siang river, where you can see the view of the mountains like never before.


The people of Pasighat celebrate a variety of festivals. The Mopin and Solung are two important festivals here. Mopin is a festival that is celebrated to drive away all the evil spirits which are supposed to bring bad luck. The locals pray that the cursed shadows are not allowed and that any kind of natural calamity is avoided. The deity that is worshiped is the deity of welfare and wisdom. It is held for five days in the month of April. Locals celebrate this festival before sowing paddy. Popir is a popular dance that is danced during Mopin. This is a very elegant dance.

Legend has it that the festival regarded as Solung, which is the principle festival of the Adis, came into its illustrious existence when the Goddess of wealth, Kine-Kane had asked them in person to carry out this worship or 'puja'. Although there are a plenty of theories that vouch for its beginning but this one is the most widely accredited and accepted.

Solung is celebrated by the Adis for five days. The first day or the Solung Gidi Dogin is the day when they prepare for this event. Doreph Long, the second day is the day of animal slaughters. Binayat Binam or the third day is the day of prayers. Yaktor of Ekoph is the fourth day and on this day arms and ammunition are manufactured. Miri or the fifth day is the day of farewell. The songs that are sung during Solung are the lyrics of Solung Abung that show the life of humans, animals, plants, etc. Solung is celebrated in August.


Pasighat is connected with road and have frequent services from Guwahati, Lakhimpur or Itanagar. Waterways crossing river Brahmaputra from Dibrugarh by ferry to Oryamghat that is situated at a distance of 32 km from Pasighat and can take a bus or taxi. Nearest rail head is at Murkongselek which is terminal station of the Rangia-Murkongselek meter gauge track, which is being converted to broad gauge under the project unigauge. The rail head is proposed to be extended up to pasighat. The BG railway line will link North-Assam area with Pasighat town, the district headquarter of East Siang of Arunachal, located at a rail route distance of 26.5 km. About 24.5 km of the route falls in Arunachal territory. The Rangia- Murkongselek BG conversion (with extension up to Pasighat) project was one of the two major rail projects in Northeast announced by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during 2010. This broad gauge line is supposed to be proceeding on to Roing, Parsuramkund, Rupai and other places the state. A preliminary engineering-traffic survey for the Pasighat-Tezu-Parshuram Kund was conducted by Northeast Frontier Railways at the request of the state government.[4]


Pasighat is the land of the mighty Siang and indigenous hanging bridges. Round cane rings, swinging strings, shattered wooden pavements dangling above the mighty Siang makes it a picture perfect moment of thrill and adventure.

The pleasant waterfall graces the mountain cliffs and chills the vicinity. The musical tumbling sound of the water, the cool breezes procreating from the waterfall dips down the temperature. The songs of the birds, the fragrances of the forest after the rains are simply overpowering. The places of attraction in the town are:

  • The Daying Ering Sanctuary: The Daying Ering Sanctuary in Arunachal Pradesh, India is one of the most popular wildlife parks of the state. Spread over an area of 190 km2., alluvial grasslands form the major area and wooded areas constitute about 15%. The rest is water.
  • Pangin: Pangin is situated at a distance of about 60 km from Pasighat, and connected by road. It stands at a point where River Siyom meets River Siang and presents a rare sight. The blue waters of Siom meet the green Sinag and the beauty of the site is to be seen to be believed. Besides above, the district is endowed with some exquisite scenic locations particularly on both sides of the Siang. There are also a number of rare plants and herbs which are of medicinal importance. Botanists and Zoologists can have ample scope for study of the rich plant and wildlife resources.
  • Kekar Monying: A mountain cliff near Rottung is an important historical place because it was here that the Adi put up a strong resistance against the British in 1911. The war was a part of a punitive expedition undertaken by the British for murdering Noel Williamson, a political officer in the previous year by Matmur Jamoh, a native of Yagrung village.
  • Komsing: A village on the left bank of the Siang is the place of Williamson's murder. A stone epitaph bearing the name of Noel. Williamson still lies near the Siang. GOMSI, a cultivation area near Rani Village is another place of historical importance. In June, 1996 a team of archaeologists led by Shri T. Tada, Deputy Director, Archaeology of the Research Department conducted a trial excavation and survey in the site. They have found broken pieces of different evidence, of glorious past culture of early medieval period (probably Pre-Ahom).

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