Barkhan District

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
District / Tehsil
Barkhan is located in Pakistan
Location in Pakistan
Coordinates: 29°32′N 69°19′E / 29.54°N 69.31°E / 29.54; 69.31Coordinates: 29°32′N 69°19′E / 29.54°N 69.31°E / 29.54; 69.31
Country  Pakistan
Province Balochistan
District Status 31st December, 1991
 • Type Administrative
 • MPA / Tribe Leader Sardar Abdur Rehman Khetran[1]
 • District Coordination Officer Mehboob Shahwani
 • Mayor[2] Wadera Amir Muhammad
 • Total 3,514 km2 (1,316 sq mi)
Elevation 1,098 m (3,602 ft)
Population (1998)[3]
 • Total 103,545
Demonym(s) Khetran
Time zone PKT (UTC+5)
Postal code 84400
Dialling code 0829[4]

Barkhan (Urdu: بارکھان‎, About this sound pronunciation  is a district in the Pakistani province of Balochistan. It shares its borders with the province of Punjab to the east and the Balochistan districts of Dera Bugti to the south, Kohlu to the west, Loralai to the north-west and Musakhel to the north. The district's headquarters is the town of Barkhan. It was granted the status of a separate district on 31 December 1991, prior to which it was a tehsil within Loralai District.[5]

Barkhan at a glance[edit]

Particular Facts
District status 31 December 1991
Geographical area 3,410 square kilometers (Census 1998)
Geographical points 69°3'-70° 4' East longitude and 29°37'-30°21' North latitude
Administrative units There are a total of one tehsil and eight union councils (LG Balochistan)
Archaeological sites Fort of Mawand of Karam Khan Bijrani Marri, dinosaur fossils
Shrine Pir Shah Mehmood, BaBa Akhwand, Dada Jauund
Major tribes Khetran, Hasni, Syed, Marri
Languages Major language is Khetrani Balochi

History [6][edit]

The early history of District Barkhan is obscure, but it is said that this area remained under Muslim rulers and conquerors of Kandahar and India. Baro Khan Baloch was a Khetran who was a great fighter but when he was defeated, he came in this valley with his tribal people and this valley was named as Bar khan but with the passage of time it was called Barkhan. The Khetran Baloch country was one of the sub-districts of Sewistan and of the Hind Province of Tatta. In Akbar's time it was called Janjah.

Khetran is a Baloch tribe. Mir Girazo Khan Mazarani Baloch was first sardar of the Khetrans. He was succeeded by his son Bakhtiar Khan, who was succeeded by Mir Haji Khan, whose rule is memorable among the Khetrans for a defeat which he inflicted on the Zhob Kakars. Mir Haji Khan was succeeded by a few nominal chiefs. Mir Haji Khan was a strong man and the Khetrans prospered under him. He also took revenge on the defeat of the Khetrans from Marris by destroying the fort at Mawand of Karam Khan Bijrani Marri. Haji Khan died, leaving three sons: Umar Khan, Nawab Khan and Balu Khan. Yet he was succeeded by his brother Sayed Khan, who was elected by the Khetrans. He too died, leaving three sons: Dost Muhammad, Sorni Khan and Kadir Bakhsh. Syed Khan was succeeded by his brother Balul Khan. Babul Khan was however opposed by Nawab Khan and Kadir Bakhsh. Kadir Bakhsh went to the Marris and gave his stepmother in marriage to Gazan, the Marri Chief and led Marris Lashkar against the Khetrans, who lost a lot of lives and property during the fights. Sir Rober Sandeman (then Deputy Commissioner, D.G. Khan), however, intervened and made peace between Kadir Bakhsh and Babul Khan

British Raj[edit]

Due to prolonged war among Khetrans, Lunis and Marris. In 1880, the Khetrans submitted a petition to the British authorities at D.G Khan, offering to pay revenue and to be taken under British protection. The Khetrans country remained under the political control of the British authorities of D.G Khan from 1878 to 1883. In 1883, Sardar Baloch Khan met Mr. Bruce, the Political Agent of Thaal Chotiali, with a Jirga of his tribesmen and the dispute between the Khetrans, Luni and Marris was settled.

In 1884, the Khetrans came under the authority of the Agent to the Governor General in Balochistan. The Leghari Barkhan circle, comprising two valleys Barkhan and Vitakari, was transferred from Punjab control to Balochistan control in 1884. This district was brought under the direct administration of Balochistan in 1887, when work on the construction of D.G Khan - Pishin Road was started and a Tehsildar was posted at Barkhan. In 1889, Barkhan tehsil was transferred to the Zhob Agency with headquarters at Loralai. This tehsil however was transferred again to Thal Chotaili Agency in 1892. In October, 1903, the Thal Chotaili and Zhob Agencies were remodeled and three new agencies; Sibi, Loralai and Zhob were created and the Barkhan Tehsil was transferred to the Loralai Agency.


Barkhan is the eighth smallest district of Balochistan and has an area of 3,410 square kilometers. Barkhan District lies between 69°3'-70° 4' East longitude and 29°37'-30°21' North latitude consisting of one tehsil and eight union councils. The location of Barkhan is at 541 km (aerial distance) south-west (220 degrees bearing) of Pakistan's capital city Islamabad and 245 km east (97 degrees bearing) from Quetta City, the provincial capital of Balochistan.


The landscape of Barkhan consists of plains, valleys and mountains varying in ground elevation ranging from 841 to 2,031 meters above Mean Sea Level (MSL). The district consists of one main valley, called Barkhan, and several smaller valleys, which are separated from the main valley by low ranges of hills running in south-west direction. The Barkhan valley is enclosed on the north side by scattered low hills, which divide the drainage water of the valley from the waters flowing into the Rakhni stream in the south-west, and on the west and north-west side by the great Jandran range. The valley ends in the Vitakari valley. To the east of the Sukha range is the Kharcha valley, which is bounded by the Phulai range on the east. The hills in the district belong to the Suleman range; the principal hills are known as Kala Pahar in the north, Karwada, Bibar, Jandra and Mar or Mukhmar in the west, Andari and Sukha in the south, Phulai and Khawaj in the east, and Mazara, Tagha, Dig and Deka in the centre and Rakhni areas. The Ranges mostly consists of earth sand and stones; some portions are rocky and not easily accessible. The Jandran range is mostly rocky. In the south runs the Han stream with its tributaries. The Han stream runs in a south-west direction and carries the drainage of the Han pass and the south-eastern slopes of the Jandran range. At Dhamani (Barkhan Tehsil) the stream becomes perennial up to its junction with the Kah River in Dera Ghazi Khan district. Dhaula stream, its tributary, brings water from the hills situated to the south of the Bagha valley and irrigates a number of villages in the Barkhan valley and joins Han in Vitakari. Rakhni and Han join Kah Stream which then passes into the district of Dera Ghazi Khan.

A third important stream is Bala Dhaka. This stream lies in Berg-Sham Mauza of the Barkhan Tehsil. The stream is a tributary of the Narechi River (Duki Tehsil). Water in this stream comes down from the south-western slopes of hills located north of the Han pass. The stream irrigates a very small area of Mauza Berg-Sham, and then its water passes in the Duki Tehsil.

Archaeological sites[edit]

During geological mapping and bio-stratigraphic research activity in Barkhan District, the geologists of the Geological Survey of Pakistan (GSP) discovered the first dinosaur fossils in Pakistan.[7][8]


Barkhan has a hot semi-arid climate (Köppen climate classification BSh) with very hot summers and mild winters. Precipitation mainly falls in two distinct periods: light to moderate rain in the late winter and early spring from February to April, and heavier rain in the monsoon from June to September.

Climate data for Barkhan
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 25.0
Average high °C (°F) 16.2
Daily mean °C (°F) 10.1
Average low °C (°F) 4.1
Record low °C (°F) −1.7
Average precipitation mm (inches) 12.2
Source: NOAA (1971-1990) [9]


The predominant language is Balochi, which accounts for 75% of the population.[10] There is also a sizeable community of speakers of the Indo-Aryan language Khetrani.[11] There are three main tribes in Barkhan District: the Khetran, Marri and Buzdar. The main tribe of the area is Khetran. The Khetrans have a chief/ Tumandar of tribe, while, each sub-clan/section is represented by a headman called Wadera. Major language of Barkhan District is Khetrani Balochi.

Government and politics[edit]

Barkhan started functioning as a district on 31 November 1991. Previously, it was a tehsil of district Loralai. The main motive to grant Barkhan the status of a district was to provide basic facilities at the grass root level and to give easy access to people to the public offices. District Barkhan comprises only one Tehsil, Barkhan itself.

Local Government Administration Organogram (Administrative Setup)Local Government organogram of Barkhan
Local government organogram (political)

Balochistan Local Government Ordinance (BLGO) of 1980 was executed, which was meant to involve the local population in the development of their areas, was further replaced by BLGO 2001 with the concept of district government. Under BLGO 2001, District Barkhan had 01 Tehsil and 8 Union Councils. The district was administrated from a single line of administration that covered both the rural as well as the urban areas. The system continued for two tenures and was again modified through the approval of BLGA 2010. The present system under the Local Government Act 2010 is similar to BLGO 1980 that emphasizes on rural-urban division but no elections were held under the latest system.

District Council[edit]

District setup

There are eight union councils' representatives in the District Council of Barkhan, one from each union council. Special seats are allocated to the representatives of workers/peasants, women and minorities as discussed above. All the elected chairmen of the Municipal Committees are also members of the District Council. The District Council is concerned with rural development activities and functions pertaining to, public health, education, agricultural development and economic welfare, articles of food and drink, drainage, livestock and dairy development, culture and public safety. The District Council can generate revenue by levying fees and various taxes as given in part II of second schedule of BLGA 2010.

Federal and government offices and services[edit]

Federal and Provincial Government Departments in Barkhan

A number of Federal and Provincial Government departments are providing services at the district level. Except for FBS, Civil Defense and Passport and immigration, all other major departments are functional at the district level and some departments have offices even at the tehsil level. (DC office, Election Commission of Pakistan, 2010)

Education and educational institutions[edit]

The overall education condition is not satisfactory. Barkhan ranked at 124 in annul report of Alif Ailaan.[12] In the case of rural females, only 6% had ever-attended any school and only 3% graduated from primary or higher levels. The primary net attendance ratio of school-going age children was 39%, with girls lower than boys (36% versus 41%). This indicates that 61% children were still out of school, which will either join late, or probably will never enroll. The total enrollment for middle classes up to December 2009 was 1,085 and total enrollment in secondary classes was only 595. One of the major reasons for low enrollment in secondary levels is non-availability of schools. Against 572 primary schools in the district, there are only 17 middle and 14 high schools. Primary school completion is relatively better (65%).

There are 572 primary schools (407 male and 165 female), 17 middle schools (12 male and 5 female), 14 high schools (12 male and 2 female), 1 girls' inter college and 1 boys' degree 4 college.[13]

Flora and fauna[edit]

  • Mammals: wolf, hill fox, Asiatic jackal, striped hyaena, cape hare, porcupine, Afghan hedgehog, and stone marten
  • Birds: chukar (Alectoris Chukar), see-see partridge (Ammoperdix Griseogularis), kestrel (Falco Tinnunculus), golden eagle (Aquila Chrysaetos Daphanea), a number of finches, buntings, seasonal/migratory waterfowls, hawks, bustards and sand grouse
  • Reptiles: Afghan tortoise (Agrionemys Horsfieldii), Afghan agama (Trapelus Megalonyx), Indian cobra (Naja naja), saw-scale viper (Echis Carinatus), dwarf dark-headed racer (Eirenis Persica Walteri) Levantine viper (Macrovipera Lebetina)
  • Major crops:
    • Rabi crops: wheat, barley, vegetable and Fodder
    • Kharif crops: sorghum (jowar), millet (bajra), maize, mung bean, mash bean, fruits, onion, potato, vegetable, melon, chili, fodder, garlic and cotton
  • Major fruits: apricot, peach, grapes, almond, pomegranate, apple, plum

Natural resources[edit]

District Barkhan has deposits of coal and gypsum. The coal deposits are not large. At some places, very minute quantities of coal were found but the work was abandoned as there was no prospect of commercial benefits. At present, a British oil exploration company[14] is conducted a survey and found oil reserves in Vitakari, Gadobra and some other areas.[15]


  1. ^ "Member Profile OF District Barkhan". 
  2. ^ "PPP secured the seat of district chairman Barkhan with Amir Mohammad Khetran as its candidate". 
  3. ^ a b "District at a glance Barkhan". Government of Pakistan "Pakistan Bureau of Statistics". 
  4. ^ "National Dialing Codes". Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited. Retrieved 28 August 2014. 
  5. ^ PCO 1998, p. 1.
  6. ^ Dames, Mansel Longworth (March 2, 2012). The Baloch Race: A Historical And Ethnological Sketch. Nabu Press. ISBN 1276719884. 
  7. ^ Anwar, Ch. Muhammad (2000). Discovery of First Dinosaur Fossil in Pakistan, Barkhan District, Balochistan. Geological Survey of Pakistan. p. 17. 
  8. ^ Malkani, M. Sadiq (April 2006). "Biodiversity of Saurischian Dinosaurs from the Latest Cretaceous Park of Pakistan" (PDF). Journal of Applied and Emerging Science. 1 (3): 108-140. 
  9. ^ "Barkhan Climate Normals 1971-1990". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved January 17, 2013. 
  10. ^ PCO 1998, p. 20.
  11. ^ Khetrani at Ethnologue (19th ed., 2016)
  12. ^ Ailaan, Alif. "THE DISTRICT RANKINGS REPORTS FOR 2015". Alif Ailaan Education Report. 2015: 22,29,36,42. 
  13. ^ Balochistan Education, Department. "BEMIS". BEMIS. Balochistan Government. Archived from the original on 2013-08-16. 
  15. ^ Malkani, M. Sadiq; Shah, M. Raza (2014). "Chamalang coal resources and their depositional environments, Balochistan, Pakistan". Journal of Himalayan Earth Sciences. 47 (1): 61–72. 


  • 1998 District Census report of Barkhan. Census publication. 60. Islamabad: Population Census Organization, Statistics Division, Government of Pakistan. 1999.