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This article is about the city in Sahiwal District. For other uses, see Sahiwal (disambiguation).
Sahiwal is located in Pakistan
Coordinates: 30°39′52″N 73°6′30″E / 30.66444°N 73.10833°E / 30.66444; 73.10833
Country Pakistan
Province Punjab
District Sahiwal
Elevation 152.4 m (500.0 ft)
Population (1998)
 • Total 207,388
Time zone PST (UTC+5)
Calling code 040

Sahiwal (Urdu: ساہِيوال‎; Western Punjabi: ساہیوال), is a city in central Punjab, Pakistan. It presently is the administrative center of Sahiwal district, and previously was that of the former Sahiwal division. Sahiwal is approximately 180 km from the major city Lahore and is the city between Lahore and Multan. With a population of 207,388 (1998 Pakistan Census), it is the 14th largest city in the Punjab and the 22nd largest city in Pakistan.

A small village on the Karachi-Lahore railway line during 1865 was named Montgomery after Sir Robert Montgomery, then Lieutenant-Governor of Punjab.[1][2] was made the capital of the Montgomery District. Its name was reinstated as Sahiwal in 1967 after the Sahi clan of Kharal Rajpoots who are the native inhabitants of this area.

The city is in the densely populated region between the Sutlej and Ravi rivers. The principal crops are wheat, cotton, tobacco,[3] legumes, potato[4] and oilseeds. Cotton goods and lacquered woodwork are manufactured.[1][5]


Punjabi is the spoken language of people of district.[6]


The Sahiwal District has been settled from the pre-historical era. Harappa is an archaeological site, about 35 km (22 mi) west of Sahiwal, that was built approximately 2600 BCE. The area was part of South Asian empires and in crossroads of migrations and invasions from Central Asia. The pastoral tribes of this barren expanse did not appear to have paid more than a nominal allegiance to the Muslim rulers, the population for the most part remained in a chronic state of rebellion. Sahiwal is located close to Pakpattan, a famous medieval town and Muslim Sufi pilgrimage site. The Pakpattan owes its sanctity and modern name, 'the holy ferry', to the shrine of the great Muslim Sufi Fariduddin Ganjshakar Shaikh-ul-Islam, Farid-ul-Hakkwa-ud-Din, Shakar Ganj (1173–1265) which was visited by old great traveller and historian Ibn Batuta in 1334. The native population converted to Islam by Sufi missionaries. After the decline of the Mughal Empire, the Sikh took control of Sahiwal. The inhabitants were treated benevolently during Sikh rule. The district came under direct British rule in 1849, when the district was officially formed with its headquarters at Pakpattan. The district was expanded to include the trans-Ravi portion in 1852, and the district headquarters were moved to Gogera. In 1865, when the railway was opened, a village on the railway, was named Montgomery and became the capital of the district.[7]

During the Indian Rebellion of 1857, there was a general uprising of the Muslim population of Sahiwal, the District formed the scene of the only uprising which took place north of the Sutlej. Before the end of May 1857, emissaries from Delhi crossed the river from Sirsa and Hisar, where open rebellion was already ripe, and met with a ready reception from the Kharals and various other Muslim tribes. The District authorities, however, kept down the threatened uprising till August 26, 1857 when the prisoners in jail made a desperate attempt to break loose. At the same time Ahmad Khan, a famous Kharal leader, who had been detained at Gogera, broke his arrest, and, though apprehended, was released on security, together with several other suspected chieftains. On September 16 they fled to their homes, and the whole country rose in open rebellion. Kot Kamalia was sacked; and Major Chamberlain, moving up with a small force from Multan, was besieged for some days at Chichawatni on the Ravi. The situation at the civil station remained critical till Colonel Paton arrived with substantial reinforcements from Lahore. An attack which took place immediately after their arrival was repulsed. Several minor actions followed in the open field, until finally the rebels, driven from the plain into the jungles of the interior, were utterly defeated and dispersed. The British troops then inflicted severe punishment on the insurgent clans, destroying their villages, and seizing large numbers of herds.[8]


The climate of Sahiwal district is extreme, reaching 45 °C in summer, and down to 2 °C in winter. The soil of the district is very fertile. The average rainfall is about 200 mm.[9]

Twin city[edit]

Sahiwal is twinned with the town of Rochdale, in Greater Manchester, North West England.[10] There is a direction sign in Rochdale's town centre pointing in Sahiwal's direction with "Sahiwal 3960 miles" written on it.[citation needed]

Notable people from Sahiwal[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b The New Encyclopaedia Britannica: Micropædia. Encyclopædia Britannica. 1991. ISBN 978-0-85229-529-8. Retrieved 18 July 2011. 
  2. ^ A history by Sahiwal Police
  3. ^ Agricultural Research Council (Pakistan) (1 January 1980). Pakistan journal of agricultural research. Pakistan Agricultural Research Council. Retrieved 18 July 2011. 
  4. ^ Nazli, Caesar B. Cororaton, Abdul Salam, Zafar Altaf, David Orden and Reno Dewina, Nicholas Minot, Hina. Cotton-Textile-Apparel Sectors of Pakistan: Situations and Challenges Faced. Intl Food Policy Res Inst. p. 47. GGKEY:1W7L1FH7N4N. Retrieved 18 July 2011. 
  5. ^ Cotton handbook of Pakistan. Pakistan Central Cotton Committee. 1983. p. 217. Retrieved 18 July 2011. 
  6. ^ ZAHID IKRAM "Explore Pakistan | Sahiwal". Retrieved 2013-02-18. 
  7. ^ "Montgomery District, Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 17, p. 410., 1860-1922". Retrieved 2013-02-18. 
  8. ^ "Montgomery District - Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 17, p. 411". Retrieved 2013-02-18. 
  9. ^ ":Govt. Post Graduate College Sahiwal:". Retrieved 2013-02-18. 
  10. ^ "Punjab Assembly". Retrieved 2010-03-24. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 30°39′52″N 73°06′30″E / 30.6644°N 73.1083°E / 30.6644; 73.1083