Chitral

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Chitral
چترال
Chetrar
District Headquarter
View of valley and river.
View of valley and river.
Chitral is located in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Chitral
Chitral
Chitral is located in Pakistan
Chitral
Chitral
Location of Chitral
Coordinates: 35°50′46″N 71°47′09″E / 35.84611°N 71.78583°E / 35.84611; 71.78583Coordinates: 35°50′46″N 71°47′09″E / 35.84611°N 71.78583°E / 35.84611; 71.78583
Country Pakistan
Province Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
District Chitral District
First mention 325 BC
Government
 • Type MPA
 • Body Shahzada Iftikharuddin
Area
 • Total 57 km2 (22 sq mi)
Elevation[1] 1,517 m (4,977 ft)
Population (2003)
 • Total 20,000
 • Density 350/km2 (910/sq mi)
Languages
 • Official Khowar[2]
Time zone PST (UTC+5)
PIN 1720 – 0xx[3]
Area code(s) +94 - xx
Website chitral.gov.pk

Chitral (Urdu: چترال‎, Khowar: چھترار), also spelled Chetrar, translated as field, is the capital of the Chitral District, situated on the western bank of the Chitral River (also called Kunar River), in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. It also served as the capital of the princely state of Chitral until 1969. The town is at the foot of Tirich Mir, the highest peak of the Hindu Kush, which is 25,289 ft (7,708 m) high. It has a population of 20,000.[citation needed] The elevation of the valley is 3,700 ft (1,100 m).

History[edit]

The entire region that now forms the Chitral District was a fully independent monarchy until 1895, when the British negotiated a subsidiary alliance with its hereditary ruler, the Mehtar, under which Chitral became a princely state, still sovereign but subject to the suzerainty of the British Raj. Chitral retained a similar status even after its accession to Pakistan in 1969, but was completely incorporated into Pakistan and became an administrative district of Pakistan in 1969.[4]

Nothing definitive is recorded about the town's first settlers. In the 3rd century, Kanishka, the Buddhist ruler of the Kushan empire, occupied Chitral. In the 4th century, the Chinese overran the valley. Raees rule over Chitral began in 1320 and came to an end in the 15th century. From 1571 onwards Chitral was the dominion of the Kator Dynasty until 1969.[5]

Geography and access[edit]

The city has an average elevation of 1,500 m (4,921 ft). The easiest access to Chitral, other than by air, is from the southwest along the Kunar Valley. However the Afghan-Pakistan border (Durand Line) and cross border tensions prevent this from being used as an internal route to the rest of Pakistan. There are other routes over the high mountain passes; to the south, the 3,200-metre (10,500 ft) Lowari Pass leads 365 kilometres (227 mi) to Peshawar. In the north, the easiest route during summer runs over the 3,798-metre (12,461 ft) Broghol pass. To the east, there is a 405 kilometres (252 mi) route to Gilgit over the 3,719-metre (12,201 ft) Shandur Pass. The territory is cut off by snow from the rest of the country for up to six months a year, a problem soon to be relieved by the completion of the Lowari Tunnel.[when?]

Climate[edit]

Chitral Fort in autumn.

Chitral has a Mediterranean climate (Köppen Csa), with warm summers and cold winters.

Climate data for Chitral
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 8.3
(46.9)
9.5
(49.1)
14.9
(58.8)
21.0
(69.8)
25.6
(78.1)
31.8
(89.2)
32.8
(91)
32.0
(89.6)
28.7
(83.7)
23.7
(74.7)
17.4
(63.3)
10.9
(51.6)
21.38
(70.48)
Daily mean °C (°F) 4.1
(39.4)
5.0
(41)
9.8
(49.6)
15.3
(59.5)
19.4
(66.9)
24.9
(76.8)
26.1
(79)
25.4
(77.7)
21.9
(71.4)
17.0
(62.6)
11.5
(52.7)
6.5
(43.7)
15.58
(60.03)
Average low °C (°F) 0.0
(32)
0.6
(33.1)
4.8
(40.6)
9.7
(49.5)
13.3
(55.9)
18.0
(64.4)
19.5
(67.1)
18.8
(65.8)
15.2
(59.4)
10.3
(50.5)
5.6
(42.1)
2.1
(35.8)
11.4
(52.5)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 69
(2.72)
99
(3.9)
146
(5.75)
139
(5.47)
69
(2.72)
22
(0.87)
52
(2.05)
56
(2.2)
40
(1.57)
31
(1.22)
26
(1.02)
51
(2.01)
800
(31.5)
Source: Climate-Data.org[6]

Demographics[edit]

Chitral's Friday mosque.

According to 2011 estimates, the population of town 19,700.

According to 1981 census, Khowar is main language and spoken by 98% of population while Pashto is spoken by small population. [7]

Tourism[edit]

Chitral is one of the two major hubs for mountaineering expeditions in the Hindu Kush. Many tourists choose to travel by air, since road travel between Islamabad and Chitral takes 11 hours, whereas air travel takes 30 minutes from Peshawar and 40 minutes from Islamabad.

Educational institutions[edit]

Chitral in winter
  • New City College
  • Chitral University Campus
  • Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University
  • Chitral Model College Chitral
  • Government Degree College
  • Government Girls Degree College
  • Government Centennial Model High School
  • Government Centennial Model School for Girls
  • Government College of Commerce
  • Frontier Corp Public School
  • Chitral Public School & College, (Chitral's first English Medium School)
  • Langlands School and College, formerly known as Sayurj Public School
  • Pearl College of Education
  • Frontier Corps Public Schools and College

Administration[edit]

Chitral is represented in the National Assembly[8] and Provincial Assembly by one elected MNA and two elected MPAs.[9]

Sports[edit]

Unlike the rest of Pakistan where cricket dominates, polo and soccer are more popular in Chitral. A number of sport festivals and tournaments are held throughout the year. Chitral has also produced some national players such as Muhammad Rasool who plays for the national football team.

Newspapers[edit]

Chitral airport.

A few number of newspapers are published by Chitral Press

  • Chitral Today
  • Chitral Times
  • Chitral News
  • Awaaz-e-Chitral
  • The Kalash Times
  • Chitral Vision
  • Weekly Chitral

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Geography of Chitral". Chitralnews.com. Retrieved 2015-11-06. 
  2. ^ "INDO-IRANIAN FRONTIER LANGUAGES". Encyclopaedia Iranica. 15 November 2006. Retrieved 2015-11-06. 
  3. ^ "Post Codes". Pakistan Post Office. Retrieved 17 March 2015. 
  4. ^ Osella, Filippo; Soares, Benjamin (2010). Islam, Politics, Anthropology. John Wiley & Sons. p. 58. ISBN 978-1-4443-2441-9. 
  5. ^ "Chitral, a Study in Statecraft" (PDF). IUCN. Retrieved 2015-11-06. 
  6. ^ "Climate: Chitral". Climate-Data.org. 
  7. ^ kpktribune.com/index.php/en/population-demography/405-khyber-pakhtunkhwa/kp-divisions
  8. ^ [1] Archived 17 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ [2] Archived 17 June 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
  • Decker, D. Kendall (1992). Languages of Chitral. 
  • Durand, Col. A. (1899). The Making of a frontier. 
  • Leitner, G. W. (1893). Dardistan in 1866, 1886 and 1893: Being An Account of the History, Religions, Customs, Legends, Fables and Songs of Gilgit, Chilas, Kandia (Gabrial) Yasin, Chitral, Hunza, Nagyr and other parts of the Hindukush, as also a supplement to the second edition of The Hunza and Nagyr Handbook. And An Epitome of Part III of the author's The Languages and Races of Dardistan (First reprint ed.). New Delhi: Manjusri Publishing House. 

External links[edit]