Sahiwal District

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Sahiwal District
Location of Sahiwal in Punjab.
Location of Sahiwal in Punjab.
Country Pakistan
Province Punjab
Headquarters Sahiwal
 • Total 3,201 km2 (1,236 sq mi)
Population (1998)
 • Total 1,843,194
Time zone PST (UTC+5)

Sahiwal District (Urdu: ضِلع ساہِيوال‎), is a district in the Punjab province of Pakistan. In 1998, it had a population of 1,843,194 people, 16.27% of which were in urban areas.[1] Since 2008, Sahiwal District, Okara District, and Pakpattan District have comprised the Sahiwal Division. The city of Sahiwal is the capital of the district and the division.


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.

Sahiwal District was an agricultural region with forests during the Indus Valley Civilization. The Vedic period is characterized by Indo-Aryan culture that invaded from Central Asia and settled in Punjab region. The Kambojas, Daradas, Kaikayas, Madras, Pauravas, Yaudheyas, Malavas and Kurus invaded, settled and ruled ancient Punjab region. After overrunning the Achaemenid Empire in 331 BCE, Alexander marched into present-day Punjab region with an army of 50,000. The Sahiwal was ruled by Maurya Empire, Indo-Greek kingdom, Kushan Empire, Gupta Empire, White Huns, Kushano-Hephthalites and Shahi kingdoms. From the beginning of the 7th century Rajput kingdoms dominated Eastern portions of Pakistan and northern India. In 997 CE, Sultan Mahmud Ghaznavi, took over the Ghaznavid dynasty empire established by his father, Sultan Sebuktegin, In 1005 he conquered the Shahis in Kabul in 1005, and followed it by the conquests of some western Punjab region. Eastern Regions of Punjab from Multan to the Rawalpindi in north (Including region of present-day Sahiwal) remained under Rajput rule until 1193. The Delhi Sultanate and Mughal Empire later ruled the region. The Punjab region became predominantly Muslim due to missionary Sufi saints whose dargahs dot the landscape of Punjab region.

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. After the decline of the Mughal Empire, the Sikh Empire invaded and occupied Sahiwal. The Muslims of Sahiwal faced restrictions during the 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 Gugera. In 1865, when the railway was opened, a village on the railway, was named Montgomery and became the capital of the district.[2] During the period of British rule, Sahiwal district increased in population and importance.

During the Indian Rebellion of 1857, there was a general rising of the Jat clans, the district formed the scene of the only rising which took place north of the Sutlej. Before the end of May 1857, emissaries from Delhi crossed the river from Sirsa and Hissar, where open rebellion was already rife, and met with a ready reception from the Kharrals and other Jat clans. The district authorities, however, kept down the threatened rising till August 26, 1857 when jail prisoners made a desperate attempt to break loose. At the same time Ahmad Khan, a famous Kharral leader, who had been detained at Gugera, 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. 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 wildest 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 cattle for sale.[3]

The region was traversed by the main line of the North Western Railway, from Lahore to Multan. It is irrigated by the Upper Sutlej inundation canal system and from the Ravi. The Rechna Doab was long home to the pastoral Jats, who had constantly maintained a sturdy independence against the successive rulers of northern India. The sites of Kot Kamalia and Harappa contain large mounds of antique bricks and other ruins left by the Indus Valley Civilisation, while many other remains of ancient cities or villages lie scattered along the river bank, or dotted the then-barren stretches of the central waste.

The district comprised three towns and 1371 villages. Its population was 360,445 (1868), 426,529 (1881), 499,521 (1891) and 497,706 (1901). In 1901, 72% of the population were Muslims, while Hindus and Sikhs formed 28%.[3]

The district was part of the Lahore Division of Punjab. The predominantly Muslim population supported Muslim League and Pakistan Movement. After the independence of Pakistan in 1947, the minority Hindus and Sikhs migrated to India while the Muslim refugees from India settled in the Sahiwal.



Punjabi is the spoken language of people of the district.[4] Urdu is also spoken.

Independence migrations[edit]

The predominantly Muslim population supported Muslim League and Pakistan Movement. After the independence of Pakistan in 1947, the minority Hindus and Sikhs migrated to India while the Muslims refugees from India settled down in the Sahiwal District.


Scenic Jungle in Division Sahiwal

Sahiwal Division is in the southeast of Punjab. From Multan Division it lies between 30-40 north latitude and 73-06 longitude. It is 500 ft (150 m) above sea level. It forms a parallelogram lying NE-SW along the River Ravi. It is 100 km from east to west and 45 km from the north-western boundary of the Division of Sahiwal, Division Faisalabad, District Toba Tek Singh. The dry River Khushak Bias separates it from the District Pakpattan. Okara District is east of the division. District Khanewal and District Vehari form boundaries with the division. On the southern side is District Pakpattan, where there is a shrine of the Sufi Hazrat Baba Fareed Shaker Gunj.


Sahiwal District consists of 531 villages in two subdivisions.


It is on the main bypass, 3 kilometers from the main city. Sahiwal Division has an area of 301 km². Sahiwal Division contains subtowns like Qadirabad, Yousafwala, Iqbal Nagar, Kassowal, Noorshah, Harappa and Ghaziabad. There are transport connections via Highway Services and Pakistan Railways to all over Pakistan.


Agriculture is important to the local economy, particularly the growing of cotton, grain, potato, wheat and rice exported all over Pakistan and around the world. As well as its cattle and sheep, the division is famous for water buffalo milk.

Sahiwal dairy cattle breed[edit]

The Sahiwal cattle breed is the best dairy breed of zebu or humped cattle (Bos Indicus), followed by the very similar Red Sindhi and Butana breeds.[5] It originated in the dry Punjab region which lies along the Indo-Pakistani border and was once kept in large herds by herdsmen called "Jaanglees." With the introduction of irrigation to the region their numbers dripped, and farmers used them as draft and dairy animals. The Division Sahiwal has one of the best dairy breeds in India and Pakistan. It is tick-resistant, heat-tolerant and resistant to internal and external parasites. Cows average 2270 kilograms of milk while suckling a calf and much higher milk yields have been recorded. Due to their heat tolerance and high milk production they have been exported to other Asian countries, Africa, Caribbean and around the world. As oxen, they are docile and slow, making them more useful for slow work.

Their colour can range from reddish brown to red, with varying amounts of white on the neck, and the underline. In males, the colour darkens towards the extremities, such as the head, legs and tails. Sahiwal breed arrived in Australia via New Guinea in the early 1950s. In Australia, the Sahiwal breed was initially selected as a dual-purpose breed. It played a valuable role in the development of the two Australian tropical dairy breeds, the Australian milking zebu and the Australian Fresian Sahiwal. Sahiwal breeds are now used in Australia for beef production, as crossing high-grade Sahiwal sires with Bos taurus animals produced a carcass of lean quality with desirable fat cover.

The Sahiwal breed is the heaviest milker of all zebu breeds and displays a well-developed udder. It sires small, fast-growing calves and is noted for its hardiness under unfavourable climatic conditions.[6][7][8][9][10]


One of the ancient civilizations on archaeological evidence dated 3000 to 5000 B.C. 15 miles (24 km) southwest from downtown in suburb of Harapa which was the northern city of Indus Valley Civilization.[11] Harrapa is now a large village in the Sahiwal Division of Punjab, 15 miles (24 km) southwest of the district capital. Archaeologists think that in ancient times Harappa was the urban centre in the upper Indus region, much like Mohenjo-daro dominated the lower Indus Valley and Ganweriwala might have been the urban centre for what is now Rajasthan. The site at Harappa was first excavated by Sir Alexander Cunningham in 1872-73, two decades after Brick Robbers carried off the visible remains of the city. He found an Indus seal of an unknown origin.

The first extensive excavations at Harappa were started by Rai Bahadur Daya Ram Sahni in 1920. His excavations at Mohenjo-daro called attention to the Indus Valley civilization as the earliest urban culture in the Indian Sub-Continent. His work was followed later in the decade by that of Madho Sarup Vats, also of the Archaeological Survey of India. Excavations continued in the 1930s. In 1946, Sir Mortimer Wheeler excavated the fortification walls and found the first pre-Indus Valley civilization (Kot Dijian) deposits. After Independence in 1947, Harappa was excavated by Mohammed Rafique Mughal of the Archaeological Survey Department of Pakistan in 1966.

In 1986, the first systematic, multi-disciplinary excavations of an Indus Valley city were begun by the Harappa Archaeological Project (HARP), under the direction of George F. Dales and Jonathan Mark Kenoyer. The main features of the plan, the citadel on the west and the mounds of the ‘lower city’ towards the east and southeast have already been indicated. To the north, a hollowed belt containing green crops marks an old bed of the River Ravi, which today flows six miles (10 km) further north between the citadel and the riverbed, Mound F contains much of the town planning; to the south of the citadel lie the outlying hills, the Harappan cemetery and the post Harappan cemetery. To the southeast, sporadic digging has been carried out in Area G, but the ragged Mound E and its surroundings are unexplored. Most of the site remains unexcavated. The earliest deposits on the site go back to 5300 B.C. and the area seems to have been continuously inhabited ever since.


The climate of Sahiwal Division is extremely hot, reaching 45-50 degrees Celsius max in summers, and cold in winter down to 5-10 degree Celsius. The soil of the division is very fertile. The average rainfall is about 2000 mm.

Major industries[edit]

Sahiwal's industries include cotton ginning and pressing, tanning, textile (City cloth palace, City Fashion Center), textile spinning, weaving, leather products, garments, pharmaceuticals, flour mills, food processing, oil mills, cold storage, potato, tobacco, vegetable ghee/cooking oil, biscuits, chip board, confectionery, and woollen textile spinning and weaving. The Sahiwal breed of cattle, recognised as productive among Zebu dairy breeds, originated here; they are found now throughout the tropics. The main crops of the Sahiwal district are wheat, cotton, sugarcane, maize and rice. Main fruits are citrus, mangoes and guava. Sahiwal is a green and fertile town with 11,522 acres (46.63 km2) forests. KSC is an electrical industry in Sahiwal, producing water heaters, water coolers, air coolers, fans and washing machines.

Heaven Fonder non-profit organization[edit]

Non-profit organization working for the promotion of Eco Tourism in Sahiwal.[clarification needed] since 2004. Its founder completed her diploma in Tourism and Hospitality Management and providing free information about tours also providing free picture DVDs and brochures.


Cricket is the most popular sport in Sahiwal. Sahiwal has produced many cricketers, such as Mushtaq Ahmed, Manzoor Elahi, Zahoor Elahi and Saleem Elahi. Football is also quite popular.

Notable residents[edit]

  • Abdus Salam, Pakistan's first Nobel Prize winner, was born in Santokdas, Division Sahiwal, according to his elder sister and his obituary,[12] although he grew up in Jhang. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for his achievements in the field of Theoretical Physics in 1979. He is buried in Rabwah, in the Chiniot district.
  • Majeed Amjad, one of the founding forefathers of modern Urdu literature, was born in Sahiwal and received his education from Government College Lahore. He was inspired by the greenery of Sahiwal and wrote about its trees and greenery. There is a park named for him.
  • Munir Niazi, a leading Urdu language poet of national and international stature.

Notable towns and colonies[edit]

Mohallah Eid Gah, Fateh Sher Colony, Farid Town, Officers Colony, Sabir Town, Baba Fareed Park, Al-Masood Town, Pak Avanue, Shadman Town, Gulistan Colony, Gunj Shakar Colony, Nawab town, Nai Abadi, Bilal colony sahiwal, Mohalla Tullah Wala, Tariq Bin Ziad (TBZ) Colony, Mohalla Rajpura, KOT ALLAH DIN, Kot Khadim Ali Sah, Barkat Town, Bahir wala adda, Jogi chowk, Lala Zar Colony,135/9.L,faisal town 90/9.l 134/9.L, 96/6.R,142/9-L, Gulshan-e-Ali Housing Scheme, Gulshan E_Noor, Johar Town, Shalimar Town, Garden Town, Model Town, Green Town, Noor Park, Ahmed Park, Shadab Town, Dubai Garden 98/6.R, Chak Number 45/12.L Firdous & etc.


Information superhighway[edit]

There are radio and cable networks broadcasting in the city, such as Sun Rise FM 96 Sahiwal and Suno Dil 102 radio and cable networks like Voltas Cable Network, Galaxy Cable Network and Geo Cable network. Here in Sahiwal also have Digital Photostudio and Digital mixing lab like Bandhan Movies. The main companies providing dial-up internet facilities are BrainNet and CyberNet. World Call Wireless has started its operation in Sahiwal. World Call provides wireless telephones at low call rates and a wireless internet facility which is much faster than the dial-up service providers in the city. Recently, Wateen Telecom has opened its office in Sahiwal. Wateen offers landline telephone, cellular phone, HAQ television, high-speed internet and WiMax. Sahiwal is on the Information superhighway after getting a high-speed DSL Internet facility enabled by Multi Net. Multi Net offer 256kbit/s, 512kbit/s, 1Mbit/s and 2Mbit/s shared speed; there is Wateen Telecom who have started their service with high-speed DSL via WIFI. A lot more development is being done in the field of IT and telecoms.

Sahiwal is connected with backbone fiber that connects all the major cities of Pakistan. All government schools in Sahiwal have the latest PIV-based computer lab from the Government of Punjab IT and Computer Labs Project. Roughly one million rupees is spent on each lab; these furnished labs contain 16 of the latest PIV (Core 2 Duo) computers, air conditioner, printer and Internet facility. Each lab has dedicated IT staff including an IT Teacher, working on 17 Scale and Lab In charge. The government hopes that this project will improve the IT education standard in Sahiwal. Asia's tallest television broadcaster is located in the city.[citation needed]


The District Hospital commonly known as the Civil Hospital is the largest hospital of Sahiwal. It has a nursing school and also offers different laboratory courses. Many doctors of the city have served their House Jobs here. Departments of all the Major specialties are available. Now a medical College is established and a new hospital is being built which would provide state-of-the-art treatments to Sahiwalians. Other notable hospitals include the Christian Hospital, Bhagwan jee Children Hospital, the Mir Wilayat Hussain Zaidi Maternity Hospital and the Sadiq Medical care Hospital fateh Sher Colony, Imtiaz Hospital Mall mandi road, Qurashi Hospital Race course Chowk, Al barkat HospitalHigh street house of tharkiylogst, Mazhar Sugery farid Town, Shifa Gynae Hospital Gunj shaker colony, Ali Sherazi Hospital, Subh-e-Nao (addiction and Psychiatric treatment Facility) High street Langrial surgimed Mission chowk, Umar abdullah Hospital Mission chowk . Shaukat Khanam Lab, Agha Khan Lab, Bhagwan Lab, Shafqat Lab and numerous other private laboratories are functioning in the city. Private clinics of doctors are numerous. Wapda fortified dispensary is a best facility for wapda servants.


Sahiwal has several educational institutes of quality. But the literacy rate is still low: about 30% overall and 51% in the city of Sahiwal. The Divisional Public School (DPS) and St. Mary's Convent High School are a schools of the city. Other notable schools are Government High School, Govt. High School Urban Area, Comprehensive High School, Government Pilot Higher Secondary School and Junior Model High School. Government Immamia College, Government Postgraduate College (GPGC) and Government College for Men and Women. and it has also a biggest institute of technology ( of technology) GCT. Medical & Dental College and COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT) are working. Virtual University has opened a campus in Sahiwal and offers distance learning programmes. It is near the Government College Sahiwal. Baha-u-Deen Zikria University (BZU) sub-campus Sahiwal and COMSATS Institut of Information Technology Sahiwal Campus has been successfully providing several under-graduate and graduate programmes since 2005.

The private sector has a major role in the education system. Kings College of Health Sciences is the first and only institute which offers courses in health sciences and allied health sciences. Schools in this regard are the Educators (four campuses), Acute Business College ACCA and CAT, The Allied School, The Knowledge School, The Beaconhouse School System, Bloom Field Hall, The City School Pre-Forces Cadet School. Dare-Aqram Model School SCOPE School System Bhagwan Public School Muhammadan Law College Sahiwal Multan Law College Sahiwal The Limit College The Command College, Allama Iqbal Polytechnic Institute, Quaid e Azam Polytechnic Institute, Quaid e Azam Technology College

  • Divisional Public School and College
  • Allama Iqbal Polytechnic Institute
  • Government Comprehensive School Sahiwal.
  • Jamia Uloom-i-Sharia Sahiwal (G.T Road)
  • Allied School, (PUNJAB COLLEGE)
  • The Educators
  • Kings College of Health Sciences,
  • The Golden Gate School System,
  • The Knowledge School,
  • The Beaconhouse School System,
  • Bloom Field Hall,
  • The City School
  • Pre-Forces Cadet School.
  • Dare-Aqram Model School
  • Bhagwan Public School
  • Government College For Women Sahiwal,
  • Government Post-Graduate College Sahiwal
  • BZU Sub Campus Sahiwal,
  • Punjab College,
  • Comsets University,
  • Govt. College University Faisalabad, Sahiwal Campus
  • Government Commerce College Old campus GCT Road,
  • Government Commerce College New Campus,
  • Imamiyah College,
  • Government Vocational Training Institute Yadgar Chowk,
  • Government Technical Training Institute Sahiwal,
  • Government College Of Technology
  • Hi-Career College of Commerce Liaqaut Road sahiwal
  • National poly Technique Institute Sahiwal,
  • Qaid-e-Azam College Of Technology Old,
  • Qaid-e-Azam College Of Technology New Shadab town,
  • Sahiwal poly Technique Institute, Sahiwal,
  • Muhammadan Law College Sahiwal
  • Multan Law College Sahiwal
  • The Limit College
  • The Command College
  • Government Jamia Rashidia Middle School,
  • Suffa Educational Complex Sahiwal
  • Government Comprehensive School Sahiwal,
  • Government High School Sahiwal,
  • Cast College for boys & girls campus, (Separately)
  • S S Memorial High School Farid Town
  • Punjab College, Pakpattan Road Sahiwal
  • Fauji Foundation Model School Sahiwal.
  • Johar College of Science and Arts (owned by Prof. Abdul Latif) GC Sahiwal
  • Sahiwal Model School Chak # 188/9AL Sahiwal

Sahiwal District Jail[edit]

The Sahiwal jail was constructed in 1873 in Montgomery in the Punjab Province of then British India. It was depicted in one of the famous Pakistan Television Corporation drama Jangloos.

The jail’s authorized accommodation is 1565. At present there are around 4500 prisoners (number varies almost on a daily basis) of three districts, i.e., Sahiwal, Okara and Pakpattan are confined.

A rough break-down of the prison population reader is

  • Undertrial Prisoners 2768
  • CT Prisoners 849
  • CP Prisoners 538
  • Juvenile Prisoners 57
  • Female Prisoners 37
  • Total population 4249

Historically, this prison was famous by the name of Montgomery Jail.

Before and after independence, a numbers of politicians, poet, and social activists were confined in this prison, including Abu-ul-Kalam, Jawahar Lal Nehru, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, Sardar Abdul Qayyum Khan, Agha Shorash Kashmeeri, Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Habib Jalab,Maulana Zafar Ali Khan, and Justice (R) Tariq Mehmood.

Maulana Zafar Ali Khan was confined in Montgomery Prison for five years. His famous poem book, Jasyat, is in the memory of Montgomery Prison.

While in prison, Faiz Ahmad Faiz wrote Zindan Nama.

To fulfill the requirements of the inmates and made them useful citizens after their release, a Literacy Center has been established. About 1000 inmates are using this center. Jail warders and convicts having minimum qualification Fellow of Arts (12th grade) have been deputed teachers in these Literacy Centers.

A computer center has been established for the juvenile prisoners. The jail has a farm where vegetables and fodder is grown. It has a factory where carpets, duree, woolen blankets and jute tatts are made.

A new high security jail has been constructed and started next to the central jail recently.

Twin cities[edit]

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


  1. ^ Population Table, Urban Resource Centre
  2. ^ Montgomery District, Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 17, p. 410, 1860-1922
  3. ^ a b Montgomery District, Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 17, p. 411
  4. ^
  5. ^ Synthetic Dairy Breed Proposal
  6. ^ Handbook of Australian Livestock, Australian Meat & Livestock Corporation, 1989, 3rd edition.
  7. ^ Genus Bos: Cattle Breeds of the World, 1985, MSO-AGVET (Merck & Co., Inc.), Rahway, N.J.
  8. ^ Mason, I.L. 1996. A World Dictionary of Livestock Breeds, Types and Varieties. Fourth Edition. C.A.B International. 273 pp.
  9. ^ Sahiwal Cattle
  10. ^ Research Centre for Conservation of Sahiwal Cattle
  11. ^ Harappa
  12. ^ T. W. B. Kibble, "Muhammad Abdus Salam, K. B. E., (29 January 1926-21 November 1996)" Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society, Vol. 44, Nov., 1998, pp. 386-401.

Coordinates: 30°35′N 73°20′E / 30.583°N 73.333°E / 30.583; 73.333