Pakistan[b] (Urdu: پاکِستان), officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan (Urdu: اِسلامی جمہوریہ پاکِستان), is a country in South Asia. It is the world’s sixth-most populous country with a population exceeding 212,742,631 people. In area, it is the 33rd-largest country, spanning 881,913 square kilometres (340,509 square miles). Pakistan has a 1,046-kilometre (650-mile) coastline along the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by India to the east, Afghanistan to the west, Iran to the southwest, and China in the far northeast. It is separated narrowly from Tajikistan by Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor in the northwest, and also shares a maritime border with Oman.
The territory that now constitutes Pakistan was the site of several ancient cultures and intertwined with the history of the broader Indian subcontinent. The ancient history involves the Neolithic site of Mehrgarh and the Bronze Age Indus Valley Civilisation, and was later home to kingdoms ruled by people of different faiths and cultures, including Hindus, Indo-Greeks, Muslims, Turco-Mongols, Afghans and Sikhs. The area has been ruled by numerous empires and dynasties, including the Persian Achaemenid Empire, Alexander III of Macedon, the Seleucid Empire, the Indian Maurya Empire, the Gupta Empire, the Arab Umayyad Caliphate, the Delhi Sultanate, the Mongol Empire, the Mughal Empire, the Afghan Durrani Empire, the Sikh Empire (partially) and, most recently, the British Empire. Pakistan is the only country to have been created in the name of Islam. It is an ethnically and linguistically diverse country, with a similarly diverse geography and wildlife. Initially a dominion, Pakistan adopted a constitution in 1956, becoming an Islamic republic. An ethnic civil war and Indian military intervention in 1971 resulted in the secession of East Pakistan as the new country of Bangladesh. In 1973, Pakistan adopted a new constitution which stipulated that all laws are to conform to the injunctions of Islam as laid down in the Quran and Sunnah.
A regional and middle power, Pakistan has the sixth-largest standing armed forces in the world and is also a nuclear power as well as a declared nuclear-weapons state, the second in South Asia and the only nation in the Muslim world to have that status. Pakistan has a semi-industrialised economy with a well-integrated agriculture sector and a growing services sector. It is ranked among the emerging and growth-leading economies of the world, and is backed by one of the world's largest and fastest-growing middle class. Pakistan's political history since independence has been characterized by periods of military rule, political instability and conflicts with India. The country continues to face challenging problems, including overpopulation, terrorism, poverty, illiteracy, and corruption. Pakistan is a member of the UN, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the OIC, the Commonwealth of Nations, the SAARC and the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition.
Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Location of Pakistan (dark green); claimed but uncontrolled region (light green)
|Recognised regional languages|
|Government||Federal parliamentary constitutional republic|
|Asif Saeed Khan Khosa|
from the United Kingdom
|14 August 1947|
|23 March 1956|
|14 August 1973|
|881,913 km2 (340,509 sq mi)[a] (33rd)|
• Water (%)
• 2017 census
|244.4/km2 (633.0/sq mi) (56th)|
|GDP (PPP)||2017 estimate|
|$1.060 trillion (25th)|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2017 estimate|
|$304.4 billion (42nd)|
• Per capita
|HDI (2017)|| 0.562|
medium · 150th
|Currency||Pakistani rupee (₨) (PKR)|
|Time zone||UTC+5b (PST)|
|ISO 3166 code||PK|
The name Pakistan literally means "land of the pure" in Urdu and Persian. It alludes to the word pāk meaning pure in Persian and Pashto. The suffix ـستان (-stān) is a Persian word meaning the place of, and also recalls the synonymous (and cognate) Sanskrit word sthāna स्थान.
The name of the country was coined in 1933 as Pakstan by Choudhry Rahmat Ali, a Pakistan Movement activist, who published it in his pamphlet Now or Never, using it as an acronym ("thirty million Muslim brethren who live in PAKSTAN") referring to the names of the five northern regions of British India: Punjab, Afghania, Kashmir, Sindh, and Baluchistan. The letter i was incorporated to ease pronunciation.
Some of the earliest ancient human civilisations in South Asia originated from areas encompassing present-day Pakistan. The earliest known inhabitants in the region were Soanian during the Lower Paleolithic, of whom stone tools have been found in the Soan Valley of Punjab. The Indus region, which covers most of present day Pakistan, was the site of several successive ancient cultures including the Neolithic Mehrgarh and the Bronze Age Indus Valley Civilisation (2,800–1,800 BCE) at Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro.
The Vedic period (1500–500 BCE) was characterised by an Indo-Aryan culture; during this period the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed, and this culture later became well established in the region. Multan was an important Hindu pilgrimage centre. The Vedic civilisation flourished in the ancient Gandhāran city of Takṣaśilā, now Taxila in the Punjab, which was founded around 1000 BCE. Successive ancient empires and kingdoms ruled the region: the Persian Achaemenid Empire (around 519 BCE), Alexander the Great's empire in 326 BCE and the Maurya Empire, founded by Chandragupta Maurya and extended by Ashoka the Great, until 185 BCE. The Indo-Greek Kingdom founded by Demetrius of Bactria (180–165 BCE) included Gandhara and Punjab and reached its greatest extent under Menander (165–150 BCE), prospering the Greco-Buddhist culture in the region. Taxila had one of the earliest universities and centres of higher education in the world, which was established during the late Vedic period in 6th century BCE. The school consisted of several monasteries without large dormitories or lecture halls where the religious instruction was provided on an individualistic basis. The ancient university was documented by the invading forces of Alexander the Great, "the like of which had not been seen in Greece," and was also recorded by Chinese pilgrims in the 4th or 5th century CE.
At its zenith, the Rai Dynasty (489–632 CE) of Sindh ruled this region and the surrounding territories. The Pala Dynasty was the last Buddhist empire, which, under Dharmapala and Devapala, stretched across South Asia from what is now Bangladesh through Northern India to Pakistan.
The Arab conqueror Muhammad bin Qasim conquered Sindh in 711 CE. The Pakistan government's official chronology claims this as the time when the foundation of Pakistan was laid but the concept of Pakistan came in 19th century.The Early Medieval period (642–1219 CE) witnessed the spread of Islam in the region. During this period, Sufi missionaries played a pivotal role in converting a majority of the regional Buddhist and Hindu population to Islam. These developments set the stage for the rule of several successive Muslim empires in the region, including the Ghaznavid Empire (975–1187 CE), the Ghorid Kingdom, and the Delhi Sultanate (1206–1526 CE). The Lodi dynasty, the last of the Delhi Sultanate, was replaced by the Mughal Empire (1526–1857 CE).
The Mughals introduced Persian literature and high culture, establishing the roots of Indo-Persian culture in the region. From the region of modern-day Pakistan, key cities during the Mughal rule were Lahore and Thatta, both of which were chosen as the site of impressive Mughal buildings. In the early 16th century, the region remained under the Mughal Empire ruled by Muslim emperors. By the early 18th century, increasing European influence contributed to the slow disintegration of the Mughal Empire as the lines between commercial and political dominance became increasingly blurred.
During this time, the English East India Company had established coastal outposts. Control over the seas, greater resources, technology, and British military protection led the Company to increasingly flex its military muscle, allowing the Company to gain control over the subcontinent by 1765 and sideline European competitors. Expanding access beyond Bengal and the subsequent increased strength and size of its army enabled it to annex or subdue most of region by the 1820s. Many historians see this as the start of the region's colonial period. By this time, with its economic power severely curtailed by the British parliament and itself effectively made an arm of British administration, the Company began more deliberately to enter non-economic arenas such as education, social reform, and culture. Such reforms included the enforcement of the English Education Act in 1835 and the introduction of the Indian Civil Service (ICS). Traditional madrasahs—primary institutions of higher learning for Muslims in the subcontinent—were no longer supported by the English Crown, and nearly all of the madrasahs lost their financial endowment.
The gradual decline of the Mughal Empire in the early 18th century enabled the Sikh Empire to control larger areas until the British East India Company gained ascendancy over South Asia. A rebellion in 1857 called the Sepoy mutiny of Bengal was the region's major armed struggle against the British Empire and Queen Victoria. Divergence in the relationship between Hinduism and Islam created a major rift in British India that led to motivated religious violence in British India. The language controversy further escalated the tensions between Hindus and Muslims. The Hindu renaissance witnessed an awakening of intellectualism in traditional Hinduism and saw the emergence of more assertive influence in the social and political spheres in British India. An intellectual movement to counter the Hindu renaissance was led by Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, who helped found the All-India Muslim League in 1901 and envisioned, as well as advocated for, the two-nation theory. In contrast to the Indian National Congress's anti-British efforts, the Muslim League was a pro-British movement whose political program inherited the British values that would shape Pakistan's future civil society. In events during World War I, British Intelligence foiled an anti-English conspiracy involving the nexus of Congress and the German Empire. The largely non-violent independence struggle led by the Indian Congress engaged millions of protesters in mass campaigns of civil disobedience in the 1920s and 1930s against the British Empire.
The Muslim League slowly rose to mass popularity in the 1930s amid fears of under-representation and neglect of British Muslims in politics. In his presidential address of 29 December 1930, Allama Iqbal called for "the amalgamation of North-West Muslim-majority Indian states" consisting of Punjab, North-West Frontier Province, Sind, and Baluchistan. The perceived neglect of Muslim interests by Congress led British provincial governments during the period of 1937–39 convinced Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan to espouse the two-nation theory and led the Muslim League to adopt the Lahore Resolution of 1940 presented by Sher-e-Bangla A.K. Fazlul Haque, popularly known as the Pakistan Resolution. In World War II, Jinnah and British-educated founding fathers in the Muslim League supported the United Kingdom's war efforts, countering opposition against it whilst working towards Sir Syed's vision.
The 1946 elections resulted in the Muslim League winning 90 percent of the seats reserved for Muslims. Thus, the 1946 election was effectively a plebiscite in which the Indian Muslims were to vote on the creation of Pakistan, a plebiscite won by the Muslim League. This victory was assisted by the support given to the Muslim League by the support of the landowners of Sindh and Punjab. The Congress, which initially denied the Muslim League's claim of being the sole representative of Indian Muslims, was now forced to recognise the fact. The British had no alternative except to take Jinnah's views into account as he had emerged as the sole spokesperson of the Entire British India's Muslims. However, the British did not want British India to be partitioned, and in one last effort to prevent it they devised the Cabinet Mission plan.
As the cabinet mission failed, the British government announced its intention to end the British Rule in 1946–47. Nationalists in British India—including Jawaharlal Nehru and Abul Kalam Azad of Congress, Jinnah of the All-India Muslim League, and Master Tara Singh representing the Sikhs—agreed to the proposed terms of transfer of power and independence in June 1947 with the Viceroy of India, Lord Mountbatten of Burma. As the United Kingdom agreed to the partitioning of India in 1947, the modern state of Pakistan was established on 14 August 1947 (27th of Ramadan in 1366 of the Islamic Calendar), amalgamating the Muslim-majority eastern and northwestern regions of British India. It comprised the provinces of Balochistan, East Bengal, the North-West Frontier Province, West Punjab, and Sindh.
In the riots that accompanied the partition in Punjab Province, it is believed that between 200,000 and 2,000,000 people were killed in what some have described as a retributive genocide between the religions while 50,000 Muslim women were abducted and raped by Hindu and Sikh men and 33,000 Hindu and Sikh women also experienced the same fate at the hands of Muslims. Around 6.5 million Muslims moved from India to West Pakistan and 4.7 million Hindus and Sikhs moved from West Pakistan to India. It was the largest mass migration in human history. Dispute over Jammu and Kashmir led to the First Kashmir War in 1948.
After independence in 1947, Jinnah, the President of the Muslim League, became the nation's first Governor-General as well as the first President-Speaker of the Parliament, but he died of tuberculosis on 11 September 1948. Meanwhile, Pakistan's founding fathers agreed to appoint Liaquat Ali Khan, the secretary-general of the party, the nation's first Prime Minister. With dominion status in the Commonwealth of Nations, independent Pakistan had two British monarchs before it became a republic.
The creation of Pakistan was never fully accepted by many British leaders, among them Lord Mountbatten. Mountbatten clearly expressed his lack of support and faith in the Muslim League's idea of Pakistan. Jinnah refused Mountbatten's offer to serve as Governor-General of Pakistan. When Mountbatten was asked by Collins and Lapierre if he would have sabotaged Pakistan had he known that Jinnah was dying of tuberculosis, he replied 'most probably'.
Maulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani, a respected Deobandi alim (scholar) who occupied the position of Shaykh al-Islam in Pakistan in 1949, and Maulana Mawdudi of Jamaat-i-Islami played a pivotal role in the demand for an Islamic constitution. Mawdudi demanded that the Constituent Assembly make an explicit declaration affirming the "supreme sovereignty of God" and the supremacy of the shariah in Pakistan.
A significant result of the efforts of the Jamaat-i-Islami and the ulama was the passage of the Objectives Resolution in March 1949. The Objectives Resolution, which Liaquat Ali Khan called the second most important step in Pakistan's history, declared that "sovereignty over the entire universe belongs to God Almighty alone and the authority which He has delegated to the State of Pakistan through its people for being exercised within the limits prescribed by Him is a sacred trust". The Objectives Resolution has been incorporated as a preamble to the constitutions of 1956, 1962, and 1973.
Democracy was stalled by the martial law that had been enforced by President Iskander Mirza, who was replaced by army chief, General Ayub Khan. After adopting a presidential system in 1962, the country experienced exceptional growth until a second war with India in 1965 that led to an economic downturn and wide-scale public disapproval in 1967. Consolidating control from Ayub Khan in 1969, President Yahya Khan had to deal with a devastating cyclone that caused 500,000 deaths in East Pakistan.
In 1970 Pakistan held its first democratic elections since independence, meant to mark a transition from military rule to democracy, but after the East Pakistani Awami League won against the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Yahya Khan and the military establishment refused to hand over power. Operation Searchlight, a military crackdown on the Bengali nationalist movement, led to a declaration of independence and the waging of a war of liberation by the Bengali Mukti Bahini forces in East Pakistan. However, in West Pakistan the conflict was described as a civil war as opposed to a war of liberation.
Independent researchers estimate that between 300,000 and 500,000 civilians died during this period while the Bangladesh government puts the number of dead at three million, a figure that is now nearly universally regarded as excessively inflated. Some academics such as Rudolph Rummel and Rounaq Jahan say both sides committed genocide; others such as Richard Sisson and Leo E. Rose believe there was no genocide. In response to India's support for the insurgency in East Pakistan, preemptive strikes on India by Pakistan's air force, navy, and marines sparked a conventional war in 1971 that resulted in an Indian victory and East Pakistan gaining independence as Bangladesh.
With Pakistan surrendering in the war, Yahya Khan was replaced by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto as president; the country worked towards promulgating its constitution and putting the country on the road to democracy. Democratic rule resumed from 1972 to 1977—an era of self-consciousness, intellectual leftism, nationalism, and nationwide reconstruction. In 1972 Pakistan embarked on an ambitious plan to develop its nuclear deterrence capability with the goal of preventing any foreign invasion; the country's first nuclear power plant was inaugurated in that same year. Accelerated in response to India's first nuclear test in 1974, this crash program was completed in 1979.
Democracy ended with a military coup in 1977 against the leftist PPP, which saw General Zia-ul-Haq become the president in 1978. From 1977 to 1988, President Zia's corporatisation and economic Islamisation initiatives led to Pakistan becoming one of the fastest-growing economies in South Asia. While building up the country's nuclear program, increasing Islamisation, and the rise of a homegrown conservative philosophy, Pakistan helped subsidise and distribute US resources to factions of the mujahideen against the USSR's intervention in communist Afghanistan. Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province became a base for the anti-Soviet Afghan fighters, with the province's influential Deobandi ulama playing a significant role in encouraging and organising the 'jihad'.
President Zia died in a plane crash in 1988, and Benazir Bhutto, daughter of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, was elected as the country's first female Prime Minister. The PPP was followed by conservative Pakistan Muslim League (N), and over the next decade the leaders of the two parties fought for power, alternating in office while the country's situation worsened; economic indicators fell sharply, in contrast to the 1980s. This period is marked by prolonged stagflation, instability, corruption, nationalism, geopolitical rivalry with India, and the clash of left wing-right wing ideologies. As PML(N) secured a supermajority in elections in 1997, Sharif authorised nuclear testings (See:Chagai-I and Chagai-II), as a retaliation to the second nuclear tests ordered by India, led by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in May 1998.
Military tension between the two countries in the Kargil district led to the Kargil War of 1999, and turmoil in civic-military relations allowed General Pervez Musharraf to take over through a bloodless coup d'état. Musharraf governed Pakistan as chief executive from 1999 to 2001 and as President from 2001 to 2008—a period of enlightenment, social liberalism, extensive economic reforms, and direct involvement in the US-led war on terrorism. When the National Assembly historically completed its first full five-year term on 15 November 2007, the new elections were called by the Election Commission.
After the assassination of Benazir Bhutto in 2007, the PPP secured the most votes in the elections of 2008, appointing party member Yousaf Raza Gillani as Prime Minister. Threatened with impeachment, President Musharraf resigned on 18 August 2008, and was succeeded by Asif Ali Zardari. Clashes with the judicature prompted Gillani's disqualification from the Parliament and as the Prime Minister in June 2012. By its own financial calculations, Pakistan's involvement in the war on terrorism has cost up to ~$118 billion, sixty thousand casualties and more than 1.8 million displaced civilians. The general election held in 2013 saw the PML(N) almost achieve a supermajority, following which Nawaz Sharif was elected as the Prime Minister, returning to the post for the third time in fourteen years, in a democratic transition. In 2018, Imran Khan (the chairman of PTI) won the Pakistan general election, 2018 with 116 general seats and became the 22nd Prime Minister of Pakistan in election of National Assembly of Pakistan for Prime Minister by getting 176 votes against Shehbaz Sharif (the chairman of PMLN) who got 96 votes.
The idea of Pakistan, which had received overwhelming popular support among Indian Muslims, especially those in the provinces of British India where Muslims were in a minority such as the United Provinces., was articulated in terms of an Islamic state by the Muslim League leadership, the ulama (Islamic clergy) and Jinnah. Jinnah had developed a close association with the ulama and upon his death was described by one such alim, Maulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani, as the greatest Muslim after Aurangzeb and as someone who desired to unite the Muslims of the world under the banner of Islam.
The Objectives Resolution in March 1949, which declared God as the sole sovereign over the entire universe, represented the first formal step to transform Pakistan into an Islamic state. Muslim League leader Chaudhry Khaliquzzaman asserted that Pakistan could only truly become an Islamic state after bringing all believers of Islam into a single political unit. Keith Callard, one of the earliest scholars on Pakistani politics, observed that Pakistanis believed in the essential unity of purpose and outlook in the Muslim world and assumed that Muslim from other countries would share their views on the relationship between religion and nationality.
However, Pakistan's pan-Islamist sentiments for a united Islamic bloc called Islamistan were not shared by other Muslim governments, although Islamists such as the Grand Mufti of Palestine, Al-Haj Amin al-Husseini, and leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood, became drawn to the country. Pakistan's desire for an international organization of Muslim countries was fulfilled in the 1970s when the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) was formed.
The strongest opposition to the Islamist ideological paradigm being imposed on the state came from the Bengali Muslims of East Pakistan whose educated class, according to a survey by social scientist Nasim Ahmad Jawed, preferred secularism and focused on ethnic identity unlike educated West Pakistanis who tended to prefer an Islamic identity. The Islamist party Jamaat-e-Islami considered Pakistan to be an Islamic state and believed Bengali nationalism to be unacceptable. In the 1971 conflict over East Pakistan the Jamaat-e-Islami fought the Bengali nationalists on the Pakistan Army's side.
After Pakistan's first ever general elections the 1973 Constitution was created by an elected Parliament. The Constitution declared Pakistan an Islamic Republic and Islam as the state religion. It also stated that all laws would have to be brought into accordance with the injunctions of Islam as laid down in the Quran and Sunnah and that no law repugnant to such injunctions could be enacted. The 1973 Constitution also created certain institutions such as the Shariat Court and the Council of Islamic Ideology to channel the interpretation and application of Islam.
Pakistan's leftist Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto faced vigorous opposition which coalesced into a movement united under the revivalist banner of Nizam-e-Mustafa ("Rule of the prophet") which aimed to establish an Islamic state based on Sharia laws. Bhutto agreed to some Islamist demands before being overthrown in a coup.
In 1977 after taking power from Bhutto in a coup de'tat, General Zia-ul-Haq, who came from a religious background, committed himself to establishing an Islamic state and enforcing sharia law. Zia established separate Shariat judicial courts and court benches to judge legal cases using Islamic doctrine. Zia bolstered the influence of the ulama (Islamic clergy) and the Islamic parties. Zia-ul-Haq forged a strong alliance between the military and Deobandi institutions and even though most Barelvi ulama and only a few Deobandi scholars had supported Pakistan's creation, Islamic state politics came to be mostly in favour of Deobandi (and later Ahl-e-Hadith/Salafi) institutions instead of Barelvi. Sectarian tensions increased with Zia's anti-Shia policies.
According to a Pew Research Center (PEW) opinion poll, a majority of Pakistanis support making Sharia the official law of the land. In a survey of several Muslim countries, PEW also found that Pakistanis tend to identify with their religion more than their nationality in contrast to Muslims in other nations such as Egypt, Indonesia and Jordan.
The geography and climate of Pakistan are extremely diverse, and the country is home to a wide variety of wildlife. Pakistan covers an area of 881,913 km2 (340,509 sq mi), approximately equal to the combined land areas of France and the United Kingdom. It is the 33rd-largest nation by total area, although this ranking varies depending on how the disputed territory of Kashmir is counted. Pakistan has a 1,046 km (650 mi) coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and land borders of 6,774 km (4,209 mi) in total: 2,430 km (1,510 mi) with Afghanistan, 523 km (325 mi) with China, 2,912 km (1,809 mi) with India and 909 km (565 mi) with Iran. It shares a marine border with Oman, and is separated from Tajikistan by the cold, narrow Wakhan Corridor. Pakistan occupies a geopolitically important location at the crossroads of South Asia, the Middle East, and Central Asia.
Geologically, Pakistan is located in the Indus–Tsangpo Suture Zone and overlaps the Indian tectonic plate in its Sindh and Punjab provinces; Balochistan and most of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are within the Eurasian plate, mainly on the Iranian plateau. Gilgit–Baltistan and Azad Kashmir lie along the edge of the Indian plate and hence are prone to violent earthquakes. This region has the highest rates of seismicity and largest earthquakes in the Himalaya region. Ranging from the coastal areas of the south to the glaciated mountains of the north, Pakistan's landscapes vary from plains to deserts, forests, hills, and plateaus.
Pakistan is divided into three major geographic areas: the northern highlands, the Indus River plain, and the Balochistan Plateau. The northern highlands contain the Karakoram, Hindu Kush, and Pamir mountain ranges (see mountains of Pakistan), which contain some of the world's highest peaks, including five of the fourteen eight-thousanders (mountain peaks over 8,000 metres or 26,250 feet), which attract adventurers and mountaineers from all over the world, notably K2 (8,611 m or 28,251 ft) and Nanga Parbat (8,126 m or 26,660 ft). The Balochistan Plateau lies in the west and the Thar Desert in the east. The 1,609 km (1,000 mi) Indus River and its tributaries flow through the country from the Kashmir region to the Arabian Sea. There is an expanse of alluvial plains along it in the Punjab and Sindh.
The climate varies from tropical to temperate, with arid conditions in the coastal south. There is a monsoon season with frequent flooding due to heavy rainfall, and a dry season with significantly less rainfall or none at all. There are four distinct seasons in Pakistan: a cool, dry winter from December through February; a hot, dry spring from March through May; the summer rainy season, or southwest monsoon period, from June through September; and the retreating monsoon period of October and November. Rainfall varies greatly from year to year, and patterns of alternate flooding and drought are common.
The diversity of the landscape and climate in Pakistan allows a wide variety of trees and plants to flourish. The forests range from coniferous alpine and subalpine trees such as spruce, pine, and deodar cedar in the extreme northern mountains to deciduous trees in most of the country (for example, the mulberry-like shisham found in the Sulaiman Mountains), to palms such as coconut and date in the southern Punjab, southern Balochistan, and all of Sindh. The western hills are home to juniper, tamarisk, coarse grasses, and scrub plants. Mangrove forests form much of the coastal wetlands along the coast in the south.
Coniferous forests are found at altitudes ranging from 1,000 to 4,000 metres (3,300 to 13,100 feet) in most of the northern and northwestern highlands. In the xeric regions of Balochistan, date palm and Ephedra are common. In most of the Punjab and Sindh, the Indus plains support tropical and subtropical dry and moist broadleaf forest as well as tropical and xeric shrublands. These forests are mostly of mulberry, acacia, and eucalyptus. About 2.2% or 1,687,000 hectares (16,870 km2) of Pakistan was forested in 2010.
The fauna of Pakistan also reflects the country's varied climate. Around 668 bird species are found there, including crows, sparrows, mynas, hawks, falcons, and eagles. Palas, Kohistan, has a significant population of western tragopan. Many birds sighted in Pakistan are migratory, coming from Europe, Central Asia, and India.
The southern plains are home to mongooses, small Indian civet, hares, the Asiatic jackal, the Indian pangolin, the jungle cat, and the desert cat. There are mugger crocodiles in the Indus, and wild boar, deer, porcupines, and small rodents in the surrounding areas. The sandy scrublands of central Pakistan are home to Asiatic jackals, striped hyenas, wildcats, and leopards. The lack of vegetative cover, the severe climate, and the impact of grazing on the deserts have left wild animals in a precarious position. The chinkara is the only animal that can still be found in significant numbers in Cholistan. A small number of nilgai are found along the Pakistan–India border and in some parts of Cholistan. A wide variety of animals live in the mountainous north, including the Marco Polo sheep, the urial (a subspecies of wild sheep), the markhor goat, the ibex goat, the Asian black bear, and the Himalayan brown bear. Among the rare animals found in the area are the snow leopard and the blind Indus river dolphin, of which there are believed to be about 1,100 remaining, protected at the Indus River Dolphin Reserve in Sindh. In total, 174 mammals, 177 reptiles, 22 amphibians, 198 freshwater fish species and 5,000 species of invertebrates (including insects) have been recorded in Pakistan.
The flora and fauna of Pakistan suffer from a number of problems. Pakistan has the second-highest rate of deforestation in the world, which, along with hunting and pollution, has had adverse effects on the ecosystem. The government has established a large number of protected areas, wildlife sanctuaries, and game reserves to address these issues.
Pakistan's political experience is essentially related to the struggle of Indian Muslims to regain the power they lost to British colonisation. Pakistan is a democratic parliamentary federal republic, with Islam as the state religion. The first constitution was adopted in 1956 but suspended by Ayub Khan in 1958, who replaced it with the second constitution in 1962. A complete and comprehensive constitution was adopted in 1973—it was suspended by Zia-ul-Haq in 1977 but reinstated in 1985—is the country's most important document, laying the foundations of the current government. The Pakistani military establishment has played an influential role in mainstream politics throughout Pakistan's political history. The periods 1958–1971, 1977–1988, and 1999–2008 saw military coups that resulted in the imposition of martial law and military commanders who governed as de facto presidents. Today Pakistan has a multi-party parliamentary system with clear division of powers and checks and balances among the branches of government. The first successful democratic transition occurred in May 2013. Politics in Pakistan is centred on, and dominated by, a homegrown social philosophy comprising a blend of ideas from socialism, conservatism, and the third way. As of the general elections held in 2013, the three main political parties in the country are: the centre-right conservative Pakistan Muslim League-N; the centre-left socialist PPP; and the centrist and third-way Pakistan Movement for Justice (PTI).
As the Muslim world's second most populous nation-state (after Indonesia) and its only nuclear power, Pakistan has an important role in the international community. With a semi-agricultural and semi-industrialized economy, its foreign policy determines its standard of interactions for its organisations, corporations, and individual citizens. Its geostrategic intentions were explained by Jinnah in a broadcast message in 1947, which is featured in a prominent quotation on the homepage of Pakistan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs website: "The foundation of our foreign policy is friendship with all nations across the globe."
Since Independence, Pakistan has attempted to balance its relations with foreign nations. Pakistan is a strong ally of China, with both countries placing considerable importance on the maintenance of an extremely close and supportive special relationship. It is also a major non-NATO ally of the United States in the war against terrorism—a status achieved in 2004. Pakistan's foreign policy and geostrategy mainly focus on the economy and security against threats to its national identity and territorial integrity, and on the cultivation of close relations with other Muslim countries.
The Kashmir conflict remains the major point of contention between Pakistan and India; three of their four wars were fought over this territory. Due partly to difficulties in relations with its geopolitical rival India, Pakistan maintains close political relations with Turkey and Iran, and both countries have been a focal point in Pakistan's foreign policy. Saudi Arabia also maintains a respected position in Pakistan's foreign policy.
A non-signatory party of the Treaty on Nuclear Non-Proliferation, Pakistan is an influential member of the IAEA. In recent events, Pakistan has blocked an international treaty to limit fissile material, arguing that the "treaty would target Pakistan specifically". In the 20th century, Pakistan's nuclear deterrence program focused on countering India's nuclear ambitions in the region, and nuclear tests by India eventually led Pakistan to reciprocate to maintain a geopolitical balance as becoming a nuclear power. Currently, Pakistan maintains a policy of credible minimum deterrence, calling its program vital nuclear deterrence against foreign aggression.
Located in the strategic and geopolitical corridor of the world's major maritime oil supply lines and communication fibre optics, Pakistan has proximity to the natural resources of Central Asian countries. Briefing on the country's foreign policy in 2004, a Pakistani senator reportedly explained: "Pakistan highlights sovereign equality of states, bilateralism, mutuality of interests, and non-interference in each other's domestic affairs as the cardinal features of its foreign policy." Pakistan is an active member of the United Nations and has a Permanent Representative to represent Pakistan's positions in international politics. Pakistan has lobbied for the concept of "enlightened moderation" in the Muslim world. Pakistan is also a member of Commonwealth of Nations, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO), and the G20 developing nations.
Because of ideological differences, Pakistan opposed the Soviet Union in the 1950s, and during the Soviet–Afghan War in the 1980s, Pakistan was one of the closest allies of the United States. Relations between Pakistan and Russia have greatly improved since 1999, and co-operation in various sectors has increased. Pakistan has had an "on-and-off" relationship with the United States. A close ally of the United States during the Cold war, Pakistan's relationship with the United States soured in the 1990s when the US imposed sanctions because of Pakistan's secretive nuclear development. Since 9/11, Pakistan has been a close ally of the United States on the issue of counter-terrorism in the regions of the Middle East and South Asia, with the US supporting Pakistan with aid money and weapons. Initially, the United States-led war on terrorism led to an improvement in the relationship, but it was strained by a divergence of interests and resulting mistrust during the war in Afghanistan and by issues related to terrorism.
Pakistan does not have diplomatic relations with Israel; nonetheless, some Israeli citizens have visited the country on tourist visas. However, an exchange took place between the two countries using Turkey as a communication conduit. Despite Pakistan being the only country in the world that has not established diplomatic relations with Armenia, an Armenian community still resides in Pakistan. Pakistan had warm relations with Bangladesh, despite some initial strains in their relationship.
Pakistan was the first country to have established formal diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China, and the relationship continues to be warm since China's war with India in 1962, forming a special relationship. In the 1960s to 1980s, Pakistan greatly helped China in reaching out to the world's major countries and helped facilitate US President Nixon's state visit to China. Despite the change of governments in Pakistan and fluctuations in the regional and global situation, China policy in Pakistan continues to be a dominant factor at all times. In return, China is Pakistan's largest trading partner, and economic co-operation has flourished, with substantial Chinese investment in Pakistan's infrastructural expansion such as the Pakistani deep-water port at Gwadar. Sino-Pakistani friendly relations touched new heights as both the countries signed 51 agreements and Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) in 2015 for co-operation in different areas. Both countries signed a Free Trade Agreement in the 2000s, and Pakistan continues to serve as China's communication bridge to the Muslim world. In 2016 China announced that it will set up an anti-terrorism alliance with Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan. In December 2018, Pakistan's government defended China's re-education camps for a million Uyghur Muslims.
After Independence, Pakistan vigorously pursued bilateral relations with other Muslim countries and made an active bid for leadership of the Muslim world, or at least for leadership in efforts to achieve unity. The Ali brothers had sought to project Pakistan as the natural leader of the Islamic world, in part due to its large manpower and military strength. A top-ranking Muslim League leader, Khaliquzzaman, declared that Pakistan would bring together all Muslim countries into Islamistan—a pan-Islamic entity.
Such developments (along with Pakistan's creation) did not get American approval, and British Prime Minister Clement Attlee voiced international opinion at the time by stating that he wished that India and Pakistan would re-unite. Since most of the Arab world was undergoing a nationalist awakening at the time, there was little attraction to Pakistan's Pan-Islamic aspirations. Some of the Arab countries saw the 'Islamistan' project as a Pakistani attempt to dominate other Muslim states.
Pakistan vigorously championed the right of self-determination for Muslims around the world. Pakistan's efforts for the independence movements of Indonesia, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, and Eritrea were significant and initially led to close ties between these countries and Pakistan. However, Pakistan also masterminded an attack on the Afghan city of Jalalabad during the Afghan Civil War to establish an Islamic government there. Pakistan had wished to foment an 'Islamic Revolution' that would transcend national borders, covering Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia.
On the other hand, Pakistan's relations with Iran have been strained at times due to sectarian tensions. Iran and Saudi Arabia used Pakistan as a battleground for their proxy sectarian war, and by the 1990s Pakistan's support for the Sunni Taliban organisation in Afghanistan became a problem for Shia Iran, which opposed a Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. Tensions between Iran and Pakistan intensified in 1998 when Iran accused Pakistan of war crimes after Pakistani warplanes had bombarded Afghanistan's last Shia stronghold in support of the Taliban.
Pakistan is an influential and founding member of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). Maintaining cultural, political, social, and economic relations with the Arab world and other countries in the Muslim world is a vital factor in Pakistan's foreign policy.
|Islamabad Capital Territory||Islamabad||2,851,868|
A federal parliamentary republic state, Pakistan is a federation that comprises four provinces: Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, and Balochistan and three territories: Islamabad Capital Territory, Gilgit–Baltistan, and Azad Kashmir. The Government of Pakistan exercises the de facto jurisdiction over the Frontier Regions and the western parts of the Kashmir Regions, which are organised into the separate political entities Azad Kashmir and Gilgit–Baltistan (formerly Northern Areas). In 2009, the constitutional assignment (the Gilgit–Baltistan Empowerment and Self-Governance Order) awarded the Gilgit–Baltistan a semi-provincial status, giving it self-government.
The local government system consists of a three-tier system of districts, tehsils, and union councils, with an elected body at each tier. There are about 130 districts altogether, of which Azad Kashmir has ten and Gilgit–Baltistan seven. The Tribal Areas comprise seven tribal agencies and six small frontier regions detached from neighbouring districts.
Law enforcement is carried out by a joint network of the intelligence community with jurisdiction limited to the relevant province or territory. The National Intelligence Directorate coordinates the information intelligence at both federal and provincial level; including the FIA, IB, Motorway Police, and paramilitary forces such as the Pakistan Rangers and the Frontier Corps.
Pakistan's "premier" intelligence agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), was formed just within a year after the Independence of Pakistan in 1947. Pakistan's ISI was ranked as the top intelligence agency in the world in 2011 by the International Business Times UK. ABC News Point in 2014 also reported that the ISI was ranked as the top intelligence agency in the world while Zee News reported the ISI as ranking fifth among the world's most powerful intelligence agencies.
The court system is organised as a hierarchy, with the Supreme Court at the apex, below which are High Courts, Federal Shariat Courts (one in each province and one in the federal capital), District Courts (one in each district), Judicial Magistrate Courts (in every town and city), Executive Magistrate Courts, and civil courts. The Penal code has limited jurisdiction in the Tribal Areas, where law is largely derived from tribal customs.
The Kashmir—the most northwesterly region of South Asia—is a major territorial dispute that has hindered relations between India and Pakistan. The two nations have fought at least three large-scale conventional wars in successive years in 1947, 1965, and 1971. The conflict in 1971 witnessed Pakistan's unconditional surrender and a treaty that subsequently led to the independence of Bangladesh. Other serious military engagements and skirmishes have included the armed contacts in Siachen Glacier (1984) and Kargil (1999). Approximately 45.1% of the Kashmir region is controlled by India, which also claims the entire state of Jammu and Kashmir, including most of Jammu, the Kashmir Valley, Ladakh, and the Siachen. The claim is contested by Pakistan, which controls approximately 38.2% of the Kashmir region, an area known as the Azad Kashmir and Gilgit–Baltistan.
India claims the Kashmir on the basis of the Instrument of Accession—a legal agreement with Kashmir's leaders executed by Maharaja Hari Singh, who agreed to cede the area to India. Pakistan claims Kashmir on the basis of a Muslim majority and of geography, the same principles that were applied for the creation of the two independent states. India referred the dispute to the United Nations on 1 January 1948. In a resolution passed in 1948, the UN's General Assembly asked Pakistan to remove most of its troops as a plebiscite would then be held. However, Pakistan failed to vacate the region and a ceasefire was reached in 1949 establishing a Line of Control (LoC) that divided Kashmir between the two nations. India, fearful that the Muslim majority populace of Kashmir would secede from India, did not allow a plebiscite to take place in the region. This was confirmed in a statement by India's Defense Minister, Krishna Menon, who said: "Kashmir would vote to join Pakistan and no Indian Government responsible for agreeing to plebiscite would survive."
Pakistan claims that its position is for the right of the people of Jammu and Kashmir to determine their future through impartial elections as mandated by the United Nations, while India has stated that Kashmir is an integral part of India, referring to the Simla Agreement (1972) and to the fact that elections take place regularly. In recent developments, certain Kashmiri independence groups believe that Kashmir should be independent of both India and Pakistan.
The law enforcement in Pakistan is carried out by joint network of several federal and provincial police agencies. The four provinces and the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) each have a civilian police force with jurisdiction extending only to the relevant province or territory. At the federal level, there are a number of civilian intelligence agencies with nationwide jurisdictions including the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), Intelligence Bureau (IB), and the Motorway Patrol, as well as several paramilitary forces such as the National Guards (Northern Areas), the Rangers (Punjab and Sindh), and the Frontier Corps (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan).
The most senior officers of all the civilian police forces also form part of the Police Service, which is a component of the civil service of Pakistan. Namely, there are four provincial police service including the Punjab Police, Sindh Police, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Police, and the Balochistan Police; all headed by the appointed senior Inspector-Generals. The ICT has its own police component, the Capital Police, to maintain law and order in the capital. The CID bureaus are the crime investigation unit and forms a vital part in each provincial police service.
The law enforcement in Pakistan also has a Motorway Patrol which is responsible for enforcement of traffic and safety laws, security and recovery on Pakistan's inter-provincial motorway network. In each of provincial Police Service, it also maintains a respective Elite Police units led by the NACTA—a counter-terrorism police unit as well as providing VIP escorts. In the Punjab and Sindh, the Pakistan Rangers are an internal security force with the prime objective to provide and maintain security in war zones and areas of conflict as well as maintaining law and order which includes providing assistance to the police. The Frontier Corps serves the similar purpose in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, and the Balochistan.
The armed forces of Pakistan are the sixth largest in the world in terms of numbers in full-time service, with about 653,800 personnel on active duty and 550,000 reservists, as of tentative estimates in 2010. They came into existence after independence in 1947, and the military establishment has frequently influenced in the national politics ever since. Chain of command of the military is kept under the control of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee; all of the branches joint works, co-ordination, military logistics, and joint missions are under the Joint Staff HQ. The Joint Staff HQ is composed of the Air HQ, Navy HQ, and Army GHQ in the vicinity of the Rawalpindi Military District.
The Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee is the highest principle staff officer in the armed forces, and the chief military adviser to the civilian government though the chairman has no authority over the three branches of armed forces. The Chairman joint chiefs controls the military from the JS HQ and maintains strategic communications between the military and the civilian government. As of 2018, the CJCSC is General Zubair Hayat alongside chief of army staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, chief of naval staff Admiral Muhammad Zaka, and chief of air staff Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan. The main branches are the Army–Air Force–Navy–Marines, which are supported by the number of paramilitary forces in the country. Control over the strategic arsenals, deployment, employment, development, military computers and command and control is a responsibility vested under the National Command Authority which oversaw the work on the nuclear policy as part of the credible minimum deterrence.
The United States, Turkey, and China maintain close military relations and regularly export military equipment and technology transfer to Pakistan. Joint logistics and major war games are occasionally carried out by the militaries of China and Turkey. Philosophical basis for the military draft is introduced by the Constitution in times of emergency, but it has never been imposed.
Since 1947 Pakistan has been involved in four conventional wars, the first war occurred in Kashmir with Pakistan gaining control of Western Kashmir, (Azad Kashmir and Gilgit–Baltistan), and India retaining Eastern Kashmir (Jammu and Kashmir). Territorial problems eventually led to another conventional war in 1965; over the issue of Bengali refugees that led to another war in 1971 which resulted in Pakistan's unconditional surrender in East Pakistan. Tensions in Kargil brought the two countries at the brink of war. Since 1947 the unresolved territorial problems with Afghanistan saw border skirmishes which was kept mostly at the mountainous border. In 1961, the military and intelligence community repelled the Afghan incursion in the Bajaur Agency near the Durand Line border.
Rising tensions with neighbouring USSR in their involvement in Afghanistan, Pakistani intelligence community, mostly the ISI, systematically coordinated the US resources to the Afghan mujahideen and foreign fighters against the Soviet Union's presence in the region. Military reports indicated that the PAF was in engagement with the Soviet Air Force, supported by the Afghan Air Force during the course of the conflict; one of which belonged to Alexander Rutskoy. Apart from its own conflicts, Pakistan has been an active participant in United Nations peacekeeping missions. It played a major role in rescuing trapped American soldiers from Mogadishu, Somalia, in 1993 in Operation Gothic Serpent. According to UN reports, the Pakistani military are the third largest troop contributors to UN peacekeeping missions after Ethiopia and India.
Pakistan has deployed its military in some Arab countries, providing defence, training, and playing advisory roles. The PAF and Navy's fighter pilots have voluntarily served in Arab nations' militaries against Israel in the Six-Day War (1967) and in the Yom Kippur War (1973). Pakistan's fighter pilots shot down ten Israeli planes in the Six-Day War. In the 1973 war one of the PAF pilots, Flt. Lt. Sattar Alvi (flying a MiG-21), shot down an Israeli Air Force Mirage and was honoured by the Syrian government. Requested by the Saudi monarchy in 1979, Pakistan's special forces units, operatives, and commandos were rushed to assist Saudi forces in Mecca to lead the operation of the Grand Mosque. For almost two weeks Saudi Special Forces and Pakistani commandos fought the insurgents who had occupied the Grand Mosque's compound. In 1991 Pakistan got involved with the Gulf War and sent 5,000 troops as part of a US-led coalition, specifically for the defence of Saudi Arabia.
Despite the UN arms embargo on Bosnia, General Javed Nasir of the ISI airlifted anti-tank weapons and missiles to Bosnian mujahideen which turned the tide in favour of Bosnian Muslims and forced the Serbs to lift the siege. Under Nasir's leadership the ISI was also involved in supporting Chinese Muslims in Xinjiang Province, rebel Muslim groups in the Philippines, and some religious groups in Central Asia.
Since 2004 the military has been engaged in a war in North-West Pakistan, mainly against the homegrown Taliban factions. Major operations undertaken by the army include Operation Black Thunderstorm, Operation Rah-e-Nijat and Operation Zarb-e-Azb.
|Pakistan's key economic statistics|
|Pakistan's GDP composition by sector|||
|Labour force||61.04 million|
|People employed||57.42 million|
|Copper||12.3 million tonnes|
|Gold||20.9 million ounces|
|Coal||175 billion tonnes|
|Shale Gas||105 trillion cubic feet|
|Shale Oil||9 billion barrels|
|Gas production||4.2 billion cubic feet/day|
|Oil production||70,000 barrels/day|
|Iron ore||500 million|
Economists estimate that Pakistan was part of the wealthiest region of the world throughout the first millennium CE, with the largest economy by GDP. This advantage was lost in the 18th century as other regions such as China and Western Europe edged forward. Pakistan is considered a developing country and is one of the Next Eleven, a group of eleven countries that, along with the BRICs, have a high potential to become the world's largest economies in the 21st century. In recent years, after decades of social instability, as of 2013, serious deficiencies in macromanagement and unbalanced macroeconomics in basic services such as rail transportation and electrical energy generation have developed. The economy is considered to be semi-industrialized, with centres of growth along the Indus River. The diversified economies of Karachi and Punjab's urban centres coexist with less-developed areas in other parts of the country, particularly in Balochistan. According to the Economic complexity index, Pakistan is the 67th-largest export economy in the world and the 106th most complex economy. During the fiscal year 2015–16, Pakistan's exports stood at US$20.81 billion and imports at US$44.76 billion, resulting in a negative trade balance of US$23.96 billion.
As of 2016 Pakistan's estimated nominal GDP is US$271 billion. The GDP by PPP is US$946,667 million. The estimated nominal per capita GDP is US$1,561, the GDP (PPP)/capita is US$5,010 (international dollars), and the debt-to-GDP ratio is 66.50%. According to the World Bank, Pakistan has important strategic endowments and development potential. The increasing proportion of Pakistan's youth provides the country with both a potential demographic dividend and a challenge to provide adequate services and employment. 21.04% of the population live below the international poverty line of US$1.25 a day. The unemployment rate among the aged 15 and over population is 5.5%. Pakistan has an estimated 40 million middle class citizens, projected to increase to 100 million by 2050. A 2015 report published by the World Bank ranked Pakistan's economy at 24th-largest in the world by purchasing power and 41st-largest in absolute terms. It is South Asia's second-largest economy, representing about 15.0% of regional GDP.
|Fiscal Year||GDP growth||Inflation rate|
Pakistan's economic growth since its inception has been varied. It has been slow during periods of democratic transition, but robust during the three periods of martial law, although the foundation for sustainable and equitable growth was not formed. The early to middle 2000s was a period of rapid economic reforms; the government raised development spending, which reduced poverty levels by 10% and increased GDP by 3%. The economy cooled again from 2007. Inflation reached 25.0% in 2008, and Pakistan had to depend on a fiscal policy backed by the International Monetary Fund to avoid possible bankruptcy. A year later, the Asian Development Bank reported that Pakistan's economic crisis was easing. The inflation rate for the fiscal year 2010–11 was 14.1%. Since 2013, as part of an International Monetary Fund program, Pakistan's economic growth has picked up. In 2014 Goldman Sachs predicted that Pakistan's economy would grow 15 times in the next 35 years to become the 18th-largest economy in the world by 2050. In his 2016 book, The Rise and Fall of Nations, Ruchir Sharma termed Pakistan's economy as at a 'take-off' stage and the future outlook until 2020 has been termed 'Very Good'. Sharma termed it possible to transform Pakistan from a "low-income to a middle-income country during the next five years".
|Share of world GDP (PPP)|
Pakistan is one of the largest producers of natural commodities, and its labour market is the 10th-largest in the world. The 7-million–strong Pakistani diaspora contributed US$19.9 billion to the economy in 2015–16. The major source countries of remittances to Pakistan are: the UAE; the United States; Saudi Arabia; the Gulf states (Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, and Oman); Australia; Canada; Japan; the United Kingdom; Norway; and Switzerland. According to the World Trade Organization, Pakistan's share of overall world exports is declining; it contributed only 0.13% in 2007.
The structure of the Pakistani economy has changed from a mainly agricultural to a strong service base. Agriculture as of 2015 accounts for only 20.9% of the GDP. Even so, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, Pakistan produced 21,591,400 metric tons of wheat in 2005, more than all of Africa (20,304,585 metric tons) and nearly as much as all of South America (24,557,784 metric tons). Majority of the population, directly or indirectly, is dependent on this sector. It accounts for 43.5% of employed labour force and is the largest source of foreign exchange earnings.
A large portion of the country's manufactured exports are dependent on raw materials such as cotton and hides that are part of the agriculture sector, while supply shortages and market disruptions in farm products do push up inflationary pressures. The country is also the fifth-largest producer of cotton, with cotton production of 14 million bales from a modest beginning of 1.7 million bales in the early 1950s; is self-sufficient in sugarcane; and is the fourth-largest producer in the world of milk. Land and water resources have not risen proportionately, but the increases have taken place mainly due to gains in labour and agriculture productivity. The major breakthrough in crop production took place in the late 1960s and 1970s due to the Green Revolution that made a significant contribution to land and yield increases of wheat and rice. Private tube wells led to a 50 percent increase in the cropping intensity which was augmented by tractor cultivation. While the tube wells raised crop yields by 50 percent, the High Yielding Varieties (HYVs) of wheat and rice led to a 50–60 percent higher yield. Meat industry accounts for 1.4 percent of overall GDP.
Industry is the third-largest sector of the economy, accounting for 20.3% of gross domestic product (GDP), and 13 percent of total employment. Large-scale manufacturing (LSM), at 12.2% of GDP, dominates the overall sector, accounting for 66% of the sectoral share, followed by small-scale manufacturing, which accounts for 4.9% of total GDP. Pakistan's cement industry is also fast growing mainly because of demand from Afghanistan and from the domestic real estate sector. In 2013 Pakistan exported 7,708,557 metric tons of cement. Pakistan has an installed capacity of 44,768,250 metric tons of cement and 42,636,428 metric tons of clinker. In 2012 and 2013, the cement industry in Pakistan became the most profitable sector of the economy.
The textile industry has a pivotal position in the manufacturing sector of Pakistan. In Asia, Pakistan is the eighth-largest exporter of textile products, contributing 9.5% to the GDP and providing employment to around 15 million people (some 30% of the 49 million people in the workforce). Pakistan is the fourth-largest producer of cotton with the third-largest spinning capacity in Asia after China and India, contributing 5% to the global spinning capacity. China is the second largest buyer of Pakistani textiles, importing US$1.527 billion of textiles last fiscal. Unlike the US, where mostly value-added textiles are imported, China buys only cotton yarn and cotton fabric from Pakistan. In 2012, Pakistani textile products accounted for 3.3% or US$1.07bn of all UK textile imports, 12.4% or $4.61bn of total Chinese textile imports, 3.0% or $2.98b of all US textile imports, 1.6% or $0.88bn of total German textile imports and 0.7% or $0.888bn of total Indian textile imports.
Services sector has 58.8% share in GDP and has emerged as the main driver of economic growth. Pakistani society like other developing countries is a consumption oriented society, having a high marginal propensity to consume. The growth rate of services sector is higher than the growth rate of agriculture and industrial sector. Services sector accounts for 54 percent of GDP in 2014 and little over one-third of total employment. Services sector has strong linkages with other sectors of economy; it provides essential inputs to agriculture sector and manufacturing sector. Pakistan's I.T sector is regarded as among the fastest growing sector's in Pakistan. The World Economic Forum, assessing the development of Information and Communication Technology in the country ranked Pakistan 110th among 139 countries on the 'Networked Readiness Index 2016'.
As of 2016, Pakistan has over 35 million Internet users and is ranked as one of the top countries that have registered a high growth rate in Internet penetration. Overall, it has the 20th-largest population of Internet users in the world. The current growth rate and employment trend indicate that Pakistan's Information Communication Technology (ICT) industry will exceed the $10-billion mark by 2020. The sector employees 12,000 and count's among top five freelancing nations. The country has also improved its export performance in telecom, computer and information services, as the share of their exports surged from 8.2pc in 2005–06 to 12.6pc in 2012–13. This growth is much better than that of China, whose share in services exports was 3pc and 7.7pc for the same period respectively.
|Pakistan State Oil||Karachi||11,570||Petroleum and Gas|
|Pak-Arab Refinery||Qasba Gujrat||3,000||Oil and refineries|
|Sui Northern Gas Pipelines||Lahore||2,520||Natural gas|
|Oil and Gas Development Co.||Islamabad||2,230||Petroleum and Gas|
|National Refinery||Karachi||1,970||Oil refinery|
|Hub Power Co.||Hub, Balochistan||1,970||Energy|
|Attock Refinery||Rawalpindi||1,740||Oil refinery|
|Lahore Electric Supply Co.||Lahore||1,490||Energy|
|Pakistan Refinery||Karachi||1,440||Petroleum and Gas|
|Sui Southern Gas Pipelines||Karachi||1,380||Natural gas|
|Pakistan International Airlines||Karachi||1,360||Aviation|
|Engro Corporation||Karachi||1,290||Food and Wholesale|
By the end of 2016, nuclear power was provided by four licensed commercial nuclear power plants. The Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) is solely responsible for operating these power plants, while the Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority regulates safe usage of the nuclear energy. The electricity generated by commercial nuclear power plants constitutes roughly 5.8% of Pakistan's electrical energy, compared to 64.2% from fossil fuels (crude oil and natural gas), 29.9% from hydroelectric power, and 0.1% from coal. Pakistan is one of the four nuclear armed states (along with India, Israel, and North Korea) that is not a party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, but it is a member in good standing of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
The KANUPP-I, a Candu-type nuclear reactor, was supplied by Canada in 1971—the country's first commercial nuclear power plant. The Sino-Pakistani nuclear cooperation began in the early 1980s. After a Sino-Pakistani nuclear cooperation agreement in 1986, China provided Pakistan with a nuclear reactor dubbed CHASNUPP-I for energy and industrial growth of the country. In 2005 both countries proposed working on a joint energy security plan, calling for a huge increase in generation capacity to more than 160,000 MWe by 2030. Under its Nuclear Energy Vision 2050, the Pakistani government plans to increase nuclear power generation capacity to 40,000 MWe, 8,900 MWe of it by 2030.
In June 2008 the nuclear commercial complex was expanded with the ground work of installing and operationalising the Chashma-III and Chashma–IV reactors at Chashma, Punjab Province, each with 325–340 MWe and costing ₨ 129 billion,; from which the ₨ 80 billion came from international sources, principally China. A further agreement for China's help with the project was signed in October 2008, and given prominence as a counter to the US–India agreement that shortly preceded it. The cost quoted then was US$1.7 billion, with a foreign loan component of US$1.07 billion. In 2013 Pakistan established a second commercial nuclear complex in Karachi with plans of additional reactors, similar to the one in Chashma. The electrical energy is generated by various energy corporations and evenly distributed by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) among the four provinces. However, the Karachi-based K-Electric and the Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) generates much of the electrical energy used in Pakistan in addition to gathering revenue nationwide. As of 2014 Pakistan has an installed electricity generation capacity of ~22,797MWt.
With its diverse cultures, people, and landscapes, Pakistan attracted around 1 million foreign tourists in 2014, contributing PKR 94.8 billion to the country's economy, which represented a significant decline since the 1970s when the country received unprecedented numbers of foreign tourists due to the popular Hippie trail. The trail attracted thousands of Europeans and Americans in the 1960s and 1970s who travelled via land through Turkey and Iran into India through Pakistan. The main destinations of choice for these tourists were the Khyber Pass, Peshawar, Karachi, Lahore, Swat and Rawalpindi. The numbers following the trail declined after the Iranian Revolution and the Soviet–Afghan War.
The country continues to attract an estimated 500,000 foreign tourists annually. Pakistan's tourist attractions range from the mangroves in the south to the Himalayan hill stations in the north-east. The country's tourist destinations range from the Buddhist ruins of Takht-i-Bahi and Taxila, to the 5,000-year-old cities of the Indus Valley Civilization such as Mohenjo-daro and Harappa. Pakistan is home to several mountain peaks over 7,000 metres (23,000 feet). The northern part of Pakistan has many old fortresses, examples of ancient architecture, and the Hunza and Chitral valleys, home to the small pre-Islamic Kalasha community claiming descent from Alexander the Great. Pakistan's cultural capital, Lahore, contains many examples of Mughal architecture such as the Badshahi Masjid, the Shalimar Gardens, the Tomb of Jahangir, and the Lahore Fort.
In October 2006, just one year after the 2005 Kashmir earthquake, The Guardian released what it described as "The top five tourist sites in Pakistan" in order to help the country's tourism industry. The five sites included Taxila, Lahore, the Karakoram Highway, Karimabad, and Lake Saiful Muluk. To promote Pakistan's unique cultural heritage, the government organizes various festivals throughout the year. In 2015 the World Economic Forum's Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report ranked Pakistan 125 out of 141 countries.
The transport industry accounts for ~10.5% of the nation's GDP. Pakistan's motorway infrastructure is better than those of India, Bangladesh, and Indonesia, but the train system lags behind those of India and China, and aviation infrastructure also needs improvement. There is scarcely any inland water transportation system, and coastal shipping only meets minor local requirements.
Highways form the backbone of Pakistan's transport system; a total road length of 263,942 kilometres (164,006 miles) accounts for 92% of passenger and 96% of inland freight traffic. Road transport services are largely in the hands of the private sector. The National Highway Authority is responsible for the maintenance of national highways and motorways. The highway and motorway system depends mainly on north–south links connecting the southern ports to the populous provinces of Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. Although this network only accounts for 4.6% of total road length, it carries 85% of the country's traffic.
The Pakistan Railways, under the Ministry of Railways (MoR), operates the railroad system. From 1947 until the 1970s the train system was the primary means of transport until the nationwide constructions of the national highways and the economic boom of the automotive industry. Beginning in the 1990s there was a marked shift in traffic from rail to highways; dependence grew on roads after the introduction of vehicles in the country. Now the railway's share of inland traffic is below 8% for passengers and 4% for freight traffic. As personal transportation began to be dominated by the automobile, total rail track decreased from 8,775 kilometres (5,453 miles) in 1990–91 to 7,791 kilometres (4,841 miles) in 2011. Pakistan expects to use the rail service to boost foreign trade with China, Iran, and Turkey.
There are an estimated 139 airports and airfields in Pakistan—including both the military and the mostly publicly owned civilian airports. Although Jinnah International Airport is the principal international gateway to Pakistan, the international airports in Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar, Quetta, Faisalabad, Sialkot, and Multan also handle significant amounts of traffic. The civil aviation industry is mixed with public and private sectors, which was deregulated in 1993. While the state-owned Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) is the major and dominant air carrier that carries about 73% of domestic passengers and all domestic freight, the private airlines such as airBlue, Shaheen Air International, and Air Indus, also provide similar services at a low cost. Major seaports are in Karachi, Sindh (the Karachi port, and Port Qasim). Since the 1990s some seaport operations have been moved to Balochistan with the construction of Gwadar Port and Gadani Port. According to the WEF's Global Competitiveness Report, quality ratings of Pakistan's port infrastructure increased from 3.7 to 4.1 between 2007 and 2016.
Developments in science and technology have played an important role in Pakistan's infrastructure and helped the country connect to the rest of the world. Every year, scientists from around the world are invited by the Pakistan Academy of Sciences and the Pakistan Government to participate in the International Nathiagali Summer College on Physics. Pakistan hosted an international seminar on "Physics in Developing Countries" for the International Year of Physics 2005. Pakistani theoretical physicist Abdus Salam won a Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on the electroweak interaction. Influential publications and critical scientific work in the advancement of mathematics, biology, economics, computer science, and genetics have been produced by Pakistani scientists at both the domestic and international levels.
In chemistry, Salimuzzaman Siddiqui was the first Pakistani scientist to bring the therapeutic constituents of the neem tree to the attention of natural products chemists. Pakistani neurosurgeon Ayub Ommaya invented the Ommaya reservoir, a system for treatment of brain tumours and other brain conditions. Scientific research and development plays a pivotal role in Pakistani universities, government- sponsored national laboratories, science parks, and the industry. Abdul Qadeer Khan, regarded as the founder of the HEU-based gas-centrifuge uranium enrichment program for Pakistan's integrated atomic bomb project. He founded and established the Kahuta Research Laboratories (KRL) in 1976, serving as both its senior scientist and the Director-General until his retirement in 2001, and he was an early and vital figure in other science projects. Apart from participating in Pakistan's atomic bomb project, he made major contributions in molecular morphology, physical martensite, and its integrated applications in condensed and material physics.
In 2010 Pakistan was ranked 43rd in the world in terms of published scientific papers. The Pakistan Academy of Sciences, a strong scientific community, plays an influential and vital role in formulating recommendations regarding science policies for the government.
The 1960s saw the emergence of an active space program led by SUPARCO that produced advances in domestic rocketry, electronics, and aeronomy. The space program recorded a few notable feats and achievements. The successful launch of its first rocket into space made Pakistan the first South Asian country to have achieved such a task. Successfully producing and launching the nation's first space satellite in 1990, Pakistan became the first Muslim country and second South Asian country to put a satellite into space.
As an aftermath of the 1971 war with India, the clandestine crash program developed atomic weapons partly motivated by fear and to prevent any foreign intervention, while ushering in the atomic age in the post cold war era. Competition with India and tensions eventually led to Pakistan's decision to conduct underground nuclear tests in 1998, thus becoming the seventh country in the world to successfully develop nuclear weapons.
Pakistan is the first and only Muslim country that maintains an active research presence in Antarctica. Since 1991 Pakistan has maintained two summer research stations and one weather observatory on the continent and plans to open another full-fledged permanent base in Antarctica.
Energy consumption by computers and usage has grown since the 1990s when PCs were introduced; Pakistan has about 30 million Internet users and is ranked as one of the top countries that have registered a high growth rate in Internet penetration as of 2013. Key publications have been produced by Pakistan, and domestic software development has gained considerable international praise.
Overall, it has the 20th-largest population of Internet users in the world. Since the 2000s Pakistan has made a significant amount of progress in supercomputing, and various institutions offer research opportunities in parallel computing. The Pakistan government reportedly spends ₨ 4.6 billion on information technology projects, with emphasis on e-government, human resources, and infrastructure development.
At the time of the establishment of Pakistan as a state, the country had only one university, Punjab University in Lahore. Very soon the Pakistan government established public universities in each of the four provinces, including Sindh University (1949), Peshawar University (1950), Karachi University (1953), and Balochistan University (1970). Pakistan has a large network of both public and private universities, which includes collaboration between the universities aimed at providing research and higher education opportunities in the country, although there is concern about the low quality of teaching in many of the newer schools. It is estimated that there are 3,193 technical and vocational institutions in Pakistan, and there are also madrassahs that provide free Islamic education and offer free board and lodging to students, who come mainly from the poorer strata of society. Strong public pressure and popular criticism over extremists' usage of madrassahs for recruitment, the Pakistan government has made repeated efforts to regulate and monitor the quality of education in the madrassahs.
Education in Pakistan is divided into six main levels: nursery (preparatory classes); primary (grades one through five); middle (grades six through eight); matriculation (grades nine and ten, leading to the secondary certificate); intermediate (grades eleven and twelve, leading to a higher secondary certificate); and university programmes leading to graduate and postgraduate degrees. There is a network of private schools that constitutes a parallel secondary education system based on a curriculum set and administered by the Cambridge International Examinations of the United Kingdom. Some students choose to take the O-level and A level exams conducted by the British Council. According to the International Schools Consultancy, Pakistan has 439 international schools.
As a result of initiatives taken in 2007, the English medium education has been made compulsory in all schools across the country. Additional reforms enacted in 2013 required all educational institutions in Sindh to begin offering Chinese language courses, reflecting China's growing role as a superpower and its increasing influence in Pakistan. The literacy rate of the population is ~58 %. The rate of male literacy is ~70.2% while the rate of female literacy is 46.3%. Literacy rates vary by region and particularly by sex; as one example, female literacy in tribal areas is 3.0%. With the advent of computer literacy in 1995, the government launched a nationwide initiative in 1998 with the aim of eradicating illiteracy and providing a basic education to all children. Through various educational reforms, by 2015 the Ministry of Education expected to attain 100% enrollment levels among children of primary school age and a literacy rate of ~86% among people aged over 10. Pakistan is currently spending 2.2 percent of its GDP on education; which according to the Institute of Social and Policy Sciences is one of the lowest in South Asia.
According to Provisional results of 2017 Census in Pakistan, the total population in Pakistan was 207.8 million, representing a 57% increase in 19 years. which is equivalent to 2.6% of the world population. Pakistan's census provisional results exclude data from Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir, which is likely to be included in the final report. Noted as the sixth most populated country in the world, its growth rate in 2016 was reported to be 1.45%, which is the highest of the SAARC nations, though this growth rate has been decreasing in recent years. The population is projected to reach 210.13 million by 2020.
At the time of the partition in 1947, Pakistan had a population of 32.5 million; the population increased by ~57.2% between the years 1990 and 2009. By 2030 Pakistan is expected to surpass Indonesia as the largest Muslim-majority country in the world. Pakistan is classified as a "young nation", with a median age of 23.4 in 2016; about 104 million people were under the age of 30 in 2010. In 2016 Pakistan's fertility rate was estimated to be 2.68, higher than its neighbour India (2.45). Around 35% of the people are under 15. The vast majority of those residing in southern Pakistan live along the Indus River, with Karachi being the most populous commercial city in the south. In eastern, western, and northern Pakistan, most of the population lives in an arc formed by the cities of Lahore, Faisalabad, Rawalpindi, Sargodha, Islamabad, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Gujrat, Jhelum, Sheikhupura, Nowshera, Mardan, and Peshawar. During 1990–2008, city dwellers made up 36% of Pakistan's population, making it the most urbanised nation in South Asia, which increased to 38% by 2013. Furthermore, 50% of Pakistanis live in towns of 5,000 people or more.
Expenditure on healthcare was ~2.8% of GDP in 2013. Life expectancy at birth was 67 years for females and 65 years for males in 2013. The private sector accounts for about 80% of outpatient visits. Approximately 19% of the population and 30% of children under five are malnourished. Mortality of the under-fives was 86 per 1,000 live births in 2012.
More than sixty languages are spoken in Pakistan, including a number of provincial languages. Urdu—the lingua franca and a symbol of Muslim identity and national unity—is the national language understood by over 75% of Pakistanis. It is the main medium of communication in the country but the primary language of only 8% of Pakistan's population. Urdu and English are the official languages of Pakistan, with English primarily used in official business and government, and in legal contracts; the local variety is known as Pakistani English. The Punjabi language, the most common in Pakistan and the first language of 44.2% of Pakistan's population, is mostly spoken in the Punjab. Saraiki, mainly spoken in South Punjab and Hindko, is predominant in the Hazara region of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Pashto is the provincial language of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and is well understood in Sindh and Balochistan. The Sindhi language is commonly spoken in Sindh while the Balochi language is dominant in Balochistan. Brahui, a Dravidian language, is spoken by the Brahui people who live in Balochistan. Gujarati community leaders in Pakistan claim that there are 3 million Gujarati speakers in Karachi. Marwari, a Rajasthani language, is also spoken in parts of Sindh. Various languages such as Shina, Balti, and Burushaski are spoken in Gilgit-Baltistan, whilst languages such as Pahari, Gojri, and Kashmiri are spoken by many in Azad Kashmir.
The Arabic language is officially recognised by the constitution of Pakistan. It declares in article 31 No. 2 that "The State shall endeavour, as respects the Muslims of Pakistan (a) to make the teaching of the Holy Quran and Islamiat compulsory, to encourage and facilitate the learning of Arabic language ..."
Even after partition in 1947, Indian Muslims continued to migrate to Pakistan throughout the 1950s and 1960s, and these migrants settled mainly in Karachi and other towns of Sindh province. The wars in neighboring Afghanistan during the 1980s and 1990s also forced millions of Afghan refugees into Pakistan. The Pakistan Census excludes the 1.41 million registered refugees from Afghanistan, who are found mainly in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and tribal belt, with small numbers residing in Karachi and Quetta. Pakistan is home to one of the world's largest refugee populations. In addition to Afghans, around 2 million Bangladeshis and half a million other undocumented people live in Pakistan. They are claimed to be from other areas such as Myanmar, Iran, Iraq, and Africa.
Experts say that the migration of both Bengalis and Burmese (Rohingya) to Pakistan started in the 1980s and continued until 1998. Shaikh Muhammad Feroze, the chairman of the Pakistani Bengali Action Committee, claims that there are 200 settlements of Bengali-speaking people in Pakistan, of which 132 are in Karachi. They are also found in various other areas of Pakistan such as Thatta, Badin, Hyderabad, Tando Adam, and Lahore. Large-scale Rohingya migration to Karachi made that city one of the largest population centres of Rohingyas in the world after Myanmar. The Burmese community of Karachi is spread out over 60 of the city's slums such as the Burmi Colony in Korangi, Arakanabad, Machchar colony, Bilal colony, Ziaul Haq Colony, and Godhra Camp.
Thousands of Uyghur Muslims have also migrated to the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan, fleeing religious and cultural persecution in Xinjiang, China. Since 1989 thousands of Kashmiri Muslim refugees have sought refuge in Pakistan, complaining that many of the refugee women had been raped by Indian soldiers and that they were forced out of their homes by the soldiers.
The population is dominated by four main ethnic groups: Punjabis, Pashtuns (Pathans), Sindhis, and Balochs. Rough accounts from 2009 indicate that the Punjabis dominate with 78.7 million (~45%) while the Pashtuns are the second-largest group with ~29.3 million (15.4%). The number of Sindhis is estimated at 24.8 million (14.1%), with the number of Seraikis (a sub-group of Punjabis) estimated at 14.8 million (8.4%). The number of Urdu-speaking Muhajirs (the Indian emigrants) stands at ~13.3 million (7.6%) while the number of Balochs is estimated at 6.3 million (3.6%)—the smallest group in terms of population. The remaining 11.1 million (4.7%) consist of various ethnic minorities such as the Brahuis, the Hindkowans, the various peoples of Gilgit-Baltistan, the Kashmiris, the Sheedis (who are of African descent), and the Hazaras. There is also a large Pakistani diaspora worldwide, numbering over seven million, which has been recorded as the sixth largest diaspora in the world.
Since achieving independence as a result of the partition of India, the urbanisation has increased exponentially, with several different causes. The majority of the population in the south resides along the Indus River, with Karachi the most populous commercial city. In the east, west, and north, most of the population lives in an arc formed by the cities of Lahore, Faisalabad, Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Sargodha, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Gujrat, Jhelum, Sheikhupura, Nowshera, Mardan, and Peshawar. During the period 1990–2008, city dwellers made up 36% of Pakistan's population, making it the most urbanised nation in South Asia. Furthermore, more than 50% of Pakistanis live in towns of 5,000 people or more. Immigration, from both within and outside the country, is regarded as one of the main factors contributing to urbanisation in Pakistan. One analysis of the 1998 national census highlighted the significance of the partition of India in the 1940s as it relates to urban change in Pakistan. During and after the independence period, Urdu speaking Muslims from India migrated in large numbers to Pakistan, especially to the port city of Karachi, which is today the largest metropolis in Pakistan. Migration from other countries, mainly from those nearby, has further accelerated the process of urbanisation in Pakistani cities. Inevitably, the rapid urbanisation caused by these large population movements has also created new political and socio-economic challenges. In addition to immigration, economic trends such as the green revolution and political developments, among a host of other factors, are also important causes of urbanisation.
The state religion in Pakistan is Sunni Islam. Freedom of religion is guaranteed by the Constitution of Pakistan, which provides all its citizens the right to profess, practice and propagate their religion subject to law, public order, and morality.
The population of Pakistan follow different religions. Most of Pakistanis are Muslims (96.0%) followed by Hindus (1.85%) and Christians (1.5%). There are also people in Pakistan who follow other religions, such as Sikhism, Buddhism, Jainism and the minority of Parsi (who follow Zoroastrianism).
In addition, some Pakistanis also do not profess any faith (such as atheists and agnostics) in Pakistan. According to the 1998 census, people who did not state their religion accounted for 0.5% of the population.
About 96.4% of Pakistanis are Muslim. Pakistan has the second-largest number of Muslims in the world after Indonesia. The majority of them are Sunni (estimated between 75 and 95%) while Shias represent between 5–20%. Pakistan, like India, is said to have at least 16 million Shias.
The Ahmadis, a small minority representing 0.22–2% of Pakistan's population, are officially considered non-Muslims by virtue of the constitutional amendment. The Ahmadis are particularly persecuted, especially since 1974 when they were banned from calling themselves Muslims. In 1984, Ahmadiyya places of worship were banned from being called "mosques". As of 2012, 12% of Pakistani Muslims self-identify as non-denominational Muslims. There are also several Quraniyoon communities.
Sufism, a mystical Islamic tradition, has a long history and a large following among the Sunni Muslims in Pakistan, at both the academic and popular levels. Popular Sufi culture is centered around gatherings and celebrations at the shrines of saints and annual festivals that feature Sufi music and dance. Two Sufis whose shrines receive much national attention are Ali Hajweri in Lahore (c. 12th century) and Shahbaz Qalander in Sehwan, Sindh (c. 12th century).
There are two levels of Sufism in Pakistan. The first is the 'populist' Sufism of the rural population. This level of Sufism involves belief in intercession through saints, veneration of their shrines, and forming bonds with a pir (saint). Many rural Pakistani Muslims associate with pirs and seek their intercession. The second level of Sufism in Pakistan is 'intellectual Sufism', which is growing among the urban and educated population. They are influenced by the writings of Sufis such as the medieval theologian al-Ghazali, the Sufi reformer Shaykh Aḥmad Sirhindi, and Shah Wali Allah. Contemporary Islamic fundamentalists criticise Sufism's popular character, which in their view does not accurately reflect the teachings and practice of Muhammad and his companions.
Hinduism is the second-largest religion in Pakistan after Islam, according to the 1998 census. As of 2010, Pakistan had the fifth-largest Hindu population in the world. In the 1998 census the Hindu (jati) population was found to be 2,111,271 while the Hindu (scheduled castes) numbered an additional 332,343. Hindus are found in all provinces of Pakistan but are mostly concentrated in Sindh. They speak a variety of languages such as Sindhi, Seraiki, Aer, Dhatki, Gera, Goaria, Gurgula, Jandavra, Kabutra, Koli, Loarki, Marwari, Sansi, Vaghri, and Gujarati.
At the time of Pakistan's creation the 'hostage theory' gained currency. According to this theory, the Hindu minority in Pakistan was to be given a fair deal in Pakistan in order to ensure the protection of the Muslim minority in India. However, Khawaja Nazimuddin, the second Prime Minister of Pakistan, stated:
I do not agree that religion is a private affair of the individual nor do I agree that in an Islamic state every citizen has identical rights, no matter what his caste, creed or faith be.
Some Hindus in Pakistan feel that they are treated as second-class citizens and many have continued to migrate to India. Pakistani Hindus faced riots after the Babri Masjid demolition, endured a massacre (in 2005) by security forces in Balochistan, and have experienced other attacks, forced conversions, and abductions.
Christians formed the next largest religious minority, after Hindus, with a population of 2,092,902, according to the 1998 census. They were followed by the Bahá'í Faith, which had a following of 30,000, then Sikhism, Buddhism, and Zoroastrianism, each back then claiming 20,000 adherents, and a very small community of Jains. There is a Roman Catholic community in Karachi that was established by Goan and Tamil migrants when Karachi's infrastructure was being developed by the British during the colonial administration between World War I and World War II. The influence of atheism is very small, with 1.0% of the population identifying as atheist in 2005. However, the figure rose to 2.0% in 2012 according to Gallup.
Civil society in Pakistan is largely hierarchical, emphasising local cultural etiquette and traditional Islamic values that govern personal and political life. The basic family unit is the extended family, although for socio-economic reasons there has been a growing trend towards nuclear families. The traditional dress for both men and women is the Shalwar Kameez; trousers, jeans, and shirts are also popular among men. In recent decades, the middle class has increased to around 35 million and the upper and upper-middle classes to around 17 million, and power is shifting from rural landowners to the urbanised elites. Pakistani festivals, including Eid-ul-Fitr, Eid-ul-Azha, Ramazan, Christmas, Easter, Holi, and Diwali, are mostly religious in origin. Increasing globalisation has resulted in Pakistan ranking 56th on the A.T. Kearney/FP Globalization Index.
The Shalwar Kameez is the national dress of Pakistan and is worn by both men and women in all four provinces: Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan, and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa as well as in FATA and Azad Kashmir. Each province has its own style of Shalwar Kameez. Pakistanis wear clothes in a range of exquisite colours and designs and in type of fabric (silk, chiffon, cotton, etc.). Besides the national dress, domestically tailored suits and neckties are often worn by men, and are customary in offices, schools, and social gatherings.
The fashion industry has flourished in the changing environment of the fashion world. Since Pakistan came into being, its fashion has evolved in different phases and developed a unique identity. Today, Pakistani fashion is a combination of traditional and modern dress and has become a mark of Pakistani culture. Despite modern trends, regional and traditional forms of dress have developed their own significance as a symbol of native tradition. This regional fashion continues to evolve into both more modern and purer forms. The Pakistan Fashion Design Council based in Lahore organizes PFDC Fashion Week and the Fashion Pakistan Council based in Karachi organizes Fashion Pakistan Week. Pakistan's first fashion week was held in November 2009.
The private print media, state-owned Pakistan Television Corporation (PTV), and Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) for radio were the dominant media outlets until the beginning of the 21st century. Pakistan now has a large network of domestic, privately owned 24-hour news media and television channels. A 2016 report by the Reporters Without Borders ranked Pakistan 147th on the Press Freedom Index, while at the same time terming the Pakistani media "among the freest in Asia when it comes to covering the squabbling among politicians." BBC calls the Pakistani media "among the most outspoken in South Asia". Pakistani media has also played a vital role in exposing corruption.
The Lollywood, Kariwood, Punjabi, and Pashto film industry is based in Karachi, Lahore, and Peshawar. While Bollywood films were banned from public cinemas from 1965 until 2008, they have remained an important part of popular culture. In contrast to the ailing Pakistani film industry, Urdu televised dramas and theatrical performances continue to be popular, as many entertainment media outlets air them regularly. Urdu dramas dominate the television entertainment industry, which has launched critically acclaimed miniseries and featured popular actors and actresses since the 1990s. In the 1960s–1970s, pop music and disco (1970s) dominated the country's music industry. In the 1980s–1990s, British influenced rock music appeared and jolted the country's entertainment industry. In the 2000s, heavy metal music gained popular and critical acclaim.
Pakistani music ranges from diverse forms of provincial folk music and traditional styles such as Qawwali and Ghazal Gayaki to modern musical forms that fuse traditional and western music. Pakistan has many famous folk singers. The arrival of Afghan refugees in the western provinces has stimulated interest in Pashto music, although there has been intolerance of it in some places.
According to the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Pakistan has the sixth-largest diaspora in the world. Statistics gathered by the Pakistani government show that there are around 7 million Pakistanis residing abroad, with the vast majority living in the Middle East, Europe, and North America. Pakistan ranks 10th in the world for remittances sent home. The largest inflow of remittances, as of 2016, is from Saudi Arabia, amounting to $5.9 billion. The term Overseas Pakistani is officially recognised by the Government of Pakistan. The Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis was established in 2008 to deal exclusively with all matters of overseas Pakistanis such as attending to their needs and problems, developing projects for their welfare, and working for resolution of their problems and issues. Overseas Pakistanis are the second-largest source of foreign exchange remittances to Pakistan after exports. Over the last several years, home remittances have maintained a steadily rising trend, with a more than 100% increase from US$8.9 billion in 2009–10 to US$19.9 billion in 2015–16.
The Overseas Pakistani Division (OPD) was created in September 2004 within the Ministry of Labour (MoL). It has since recognised the importance of overseas Pakistanis and their contribution to the nation's economy. Together with Community Welfare Attaches (CWAs) and the Overseas Pakistanis Foundation (OPF), the OPD is making efforts to improve the welfare of Pakistanis who reside abroad. The division aims to provide better services through improved facilities at airports, and suitable schemes for housing, education, and health care. It also facilitates the reintegration into society of returning overseas Pakistanis. Notable members of the Pakistani diaspora include London Mayor Sadiq Khan, UK Cabinet Member Sajid Javid, former UK Conservative Party Chair Baroness Warsi, singers Zayn Malik and Nadia Ali, MIT Physics Professor Dr. Nergis Mavalvala, actors Riz Ahmed and Kumail Nanjiani, businessmen Shahid Khan and Sir Anwar Pervez, Boston University professors Adil Najam and Hamid Nawab, Texas A&M Professor Muhammad Suhail Zubairy, Yale Professor Sara Suleri, UC San Diego Professor Farooq Azam, and historian Ayesha Jalal.
Pakistan has literature in Urdu, Sindhi, Punjabi, Pashto, Baluchi, Persian, English, and many other languages. The Pakistan Academy of Letters is a large literary community that promotes literature and poetry in Pakistan and abroad. The National Library publishes and promotes literature in the country. Before the 19th century, Pakistani literature consisted mainly of lyric and religious poetry and mystical and folkloric works. During the colonial period, native literary figures were influenced by western literary realism and took up increasingly varied topics and narrative forms. Prose fiction is now very popular.
The national poet of Pakistan, Muhammad Iqbal, wrote poetry in Urdu and Persian. He was a strong proponent of the political and spiritual revival of Islamic civilisation and encouraged Muslims all over the world to bring about a successful revolution. Well-known figures in contemporary Pakistani Urdu literature include Josh Malihabadi Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Saadat Hasan Manto. Sadequain and Gulgee are known for their calligraphy and paintings. The Sufi poets Shah Abdul Latif, Bulleh Shah, Mian Muhammad Bakhsh, and Khawaja Farid enjoy considerable popularity in Pakistan. Mirza Kalich Beg has been termed the father of modern Sindhi prose. Historically, philosophical development in the country was dominated by Muhammad Iqbal, Sir Syed, Muhammad Asad, Maududi, and Mohammad Ali Johar.
Ideas from British and American philosophy greatly shaped philosophical development in Pakistan. Analysts such as M. M. Sharif and Zafar Hassan established the first major Pakistani philosophical movement in 1947. After the 1971 war, philosophers such as Jalaludin Abdur Rahim, Gianchandani, and Malik Khalid incorporated Marxism into Pakistan's philosophical thinking. Influential work by Manzoor Ahmad, Jon Elia, Hasan Askari Rizvi, and Abdul Khaliq brought mainstream social, political, and analytical philosophy to the fore in academia. Works by Noam Chomsky have influenced philosophical ideas in various fields of social and political philosophy.
Four periods are recognised in Pakistani architecture: pre-Islamic, Islamic, colonial, and post-colonial. With the beginning of the Indus civilization around the middle of the 3rd millennium BCE, an advanced urban culture developed for the first time in the region, with large buildings, some of which survive to this day. Mohenjo Daro, Harappa, and Kot Diji are among the pre-Islamic settlements that are now tourist attractions. The rise of Buddhism and the influence of Greek civilisation led to the development of a Greco-Buddhist style, starting from the 1st century CE. The high point of this era was the Gandhara style. An example of Buddhist architecture is the ruins of the Buddhist monastery Takht-i-Bahi in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
The arrival of Islam in what is today Pakistan meant the sudden end of Buddhist architecture in the area and a smooth transition to the predominantly pictureless Islamic architecture. The most important Indo-Islamic-style building still standing is the tomb of the Shah Rukn-i-Alam in Multan. During the Mughal era, design elements of Persian-Islamic architecture were fused with and often produced playful forms of Hindustani art. Lahore, as the occasional residence of Mughal rulers, contains many important buildings from the empire. Most prominent among them are the Badshahi Mosque, the fortress of Lahore with the famous Alamgiri Gate, the colourful, Mughal-style Wazir Khan Mosque, the Shalimar Gardens in Lahore, and the Shahjahan Mosque in Thatta. In the British colonial period, predominantly functional buildings of the Indo-European representative style developed from a mixture of European and Indian-Islamic components. Post-colonial national identity is expressed in modern structures such as the Faisal Mosque, the Minar-e-Pakistan, and the Mazar-e-Quaid. Several examples of architectural infrastructure demonstrating the influence of British design can be found in Lahore, Peshawar, and Karachi.
Pakistani cuisine is similar to that of other regions of South Asia, with some of it being originated from the royal kitchens of 16th-century Mughal emperors. Most of those dishes have their roots in British, Indian, Central Asian and Middle Eastern cuisine. Unlike Middle Eastern cuisine, Pakistani cooking uses large quantities of spices, herbs, and seasoning. Garlic, ginger, turmeric, red chili, and garam masala are used in most dishes, and home cooking regularly includes curry, roti, a thin flatbread made from wheat, is a staple food, usually served with curry, meat, vegetables, and lentils. Rice is also common; it is served plain, fried with spices, and in sweet dishes.
Lassi is a traditional drink in the Punjab region. Black tea with milk and sugar is popular throughout Pakistan and is consumed daily by most of the population. Sohan halwa is a popular sweet dish from the southern region of Punjab province and is enjoyed all over Pakistan.
Most sports played in Pakistan originated and were substantially developed by athletes and sports fans from the United Kingdom who introduced them during the British Raj. Field hockey is the national sport of Pakistan; it has won three gold medals in the Olympic Games held in 1960, 1968, and 1984. Pakistan has also won the Hockey World Cup a record four times, held in 1971, 1978, 1982, and 1994.
Cricket, however, is the most popular game across the country. The country has had an array of success in the sport over the years, and has the distinct achievement of having won each of the major ICC international cricket tournaments: ICC Cricket World Cup, ICC World Twenty20, and ICC Champions Trophy; as well as the ICC Test Championship. The cricket team (known as Shaheen) won the Cricket World Cup held in 1992; it was runner-up once, in 1999. Pakistan was runner-up in the inaugural World Twenty20 (2007) in South Africa and won the World Twenty20 in England in 2009. In March 2009, militants attacked the touring Sri Lankan cricket team, after which no international cricket was played in Pakistan until May 2015, when the Zimbabwean team agreed to a tour. Pakistan also won the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy by defeating arch-rivals India in the final.
Association Football is the second most played sports in Pakistan and it is organised and regulated by the Pakistan Football Federation. Football in Pakistan is as old as the country itself. Shortly after the creation of Pakistan in 1947, the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) was created, and Muhammad Ali Jinnah became its first Patron-in-Chief. The highest football division in Pakistan is the Pakistan Premier League. Pakistan is known as one of the best manufacturer of the official FIFA World Cup ball. The best football players to play for Pakistan are Kaleemullah, Zesh Rehman, Muhammad Essa, Haroon Yousaf, and Muhammad Adil.
Pakistan has hosted or co-hosted several international sporting events: the 1989 and 2004 South Asian Games; the 1984, 1993, 1996 and 2003 World Squash Championships; the 1987 and 1996 Cricket World Cup; and the 1990 Hockey World Cup.
Religion: Approximately 1.6 percent of the population is Hindu, 1.6 percent is Christian, and 0.3 percent belongs to other religions, such as Bahaism and Sikhism.
Pakistan is unique among Muslim countries in its relationship with Islam: it is the only country to have been established in the name of Islam
As British rule there drew to an end, many Muslims demanded, in the name of Islam, the creation of a separate Pakistan state.
The constitution proclaims ... that all existing laws shall be brought in accordance with the injunctions of Islam as laid down in the Quran and Sunnah, and no law shall be enacted which is repugnant to such injunctions.
In the framework of their regional security complex theory (RSCT), Barry Buzan and Ole Waever differentiate between superpowers and great powers which act and influence the global level (or system level) and regional powers whose influence may be large in their regions but have less effect at the global level. This category of regional powers includes Brazil, Egypt, India, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and Turkey.
The regional powers such as Israel or Pakistan are not simple bystanders of great power politics in their regions; they attempt to asymmetrically influence the major power system often in their own distinct ways.
Countries like Saudi Arabia and Pakistan have enough influence to not be considered small, but not enough to be major powers. Within the limits of their regions, they play a significant political role. Thus instinctively, they would qualify as middle powers. While it is not the objective here to question the characteristics of Jordan's definition of middle powers, we argue that Pakistan is in fact a middle power despite its being nuclear-armed. When looking at the numbers, for instance, it appears that Saudi Arabia and Pakistan can be classified as middle powers (see in this regard Ping, 2007).
These sentiments were presented on behalf of our thirty million Muslim brethren who live in Pakistan, by which we mean the five northern units of India, viz. Punjab, North-West Frontier Province, Kashmir, Sind and Baluchistan (Pakistan--land of the pure--was later adopted as the name of the new Muslim state, and spelled as Pakistan).
When the men of Alexander the Great came to Taxila in India in the fourth century BCE they found a university there the like of which had not been seen in Greece, a university which taught the three Vedas and the eighteen accomplishments and was still existing when the Chinese pilgrim Fa-Hsien went there about CE 400.
In the early centuries the centre of Buddhist scholarship was the University of Taxila.
In the elections of 1946, the Muslim League won 90 percent of the legislative seats reserved for Muslims. It was the power of the big zamindars in Punjab and Sindh behind the Muslim League candidates that led to this massive landslide victory (Alavi 2002, 14). Even Congress, which had always denied the League's claim to be the only true representative of Indian Muslims had to concede the truth of that claim. The 1946 election was, in effect, a plebiscite among Muslims on Pakistan.
Despite the League's victory in the elections, the British did not want the partition of British India. As a last attempt to avoid it, Britain put forward the Cabinet Mission Plan, according to which India would become a federation of three large, self-governing provinces and the central government would be limited to power over foreign policy and defense, implying a weak center.
There are no exact numbers of people killed and displaced, but estimates range from a few hundred thousand to two million killed and more than 10 million displaced.
An estimated 12–15 million people were displaced, and some 2 million died. The legacy of Partition (never without a capital P) remains strong today ...
2,000,000 killed in the Hindu-Muslim holocaust during the partition of British-India and the creation of India and Pakistan
Estimates of the dead vary from 200,000 (the contemporary British figure) to 2 million (a subsequent Indian speculation). Today, however, it is widely accepted that nearly a million people died during Partition (Butalia, 1997).
In the event, largely but not exclusively as a consequence of their efforts, the entire Muslim population of the eastern Punjab districts migrated to West Punjab and the entire Sikh and Hindu populations moved to East Punjab in the midst of widespread intimidation, terror, violence, abduction, rape, and murder.
The official estimate of the number of abducted women during Partition was placed at 33,000 non-Muslim (Hindu or Sikh predominantly) women in Pakistan, and 50,000 Muslim women in India.
The horrific statistics that surround women refugees-between 75,000–100,000 Hindu, Muslim and Sikh women who were abducted by men of the other communities, subjected to multiple rapes, mutilations, and, for some, forced marriages and conversions-is matched by the treatment of the abducted women in the hands of the nation-state. In the Constituent Assembly in 1949 it was recorded that of the 50,000 Muslim women abducted in India, 8,000 of then were recovered, and of the 33,000 Hindu and Sikh women abducted, 12,000 were recovered.
In addition thousands of women on both sides of the newly formed borders (estimated range from 29,000 to 50,000 Muslim women and 15,000 to 35,000 Hindu and Sikh women) were abducted, raped, forced to convert, forced into marriage, forced back into what the two States defined as 'their proper homes,' torn apart from their families once during partition by those who abducted them, and again, after partition, by the State which tried to 'recover' and 'rehabilitate' them.
When the British Indian Empire was partitioned in 1947, 4.7 million Sikhs and Hindus left what is today Pakistan for India, and 6.5 million Muslims migrated from India to Pakistan.
Unfortunately, it was accompanied by the largest mass migration in human history of some 10 million.
Jinnah became the first governor general of Pakistan, but died of tuberculosis on 11 September 1948.
Undivided India, their magnificent imperial trophy, was besmirched by the creation of Pakistan, and the division of India was never emotionally accepted by many British leaders, Mountbatten among them.
Mountbatten's partiality was apparent in his own statements. He tilted openly and heavily towards Congress. While doing so he clearly expressed his lack of support and faith in the Muslim League and its Pakistan idea.
Mountbatten tried to convince Jinnah of the value of accepting him, Mountbatten, as Pakistan's first governor-general, but Jinnah refused to be moved from his determination to take that job himself.
When Mountbatten was asked by Collins and Lapierre if he would have sabotaged Pakistan if he had known that Jinnah was dying of tuberculosis, his answer was instructive. There was no doubt in his mind about the legality or morality of his position on Pakistan. 'Most probably,' he said (1982:39).
Mawlānā Shabbīr Ahmad Usmānī, a respected Deobandī ʿālim (scholar) who was appointed to the prestigious position of Shaykh al-Islām of Pakistan in 1949, was the first to demand that Pakistan become an Islamic state. But Mawdūdī and his Jamāʿat-i Islāmī played the central part in the demand for an Islamic constitution. Mawdūdī demanded that the Constituent Assembly make an unequivocal declaration affirming the "supreme sovereignty of God" and the supremacy of the sharīʿah as the basic law of Pakistan.
The first important result of the combined efforts of the Jamāʿat-i Islāmī and the ʿulamāʿ was the passage of the Objectives Resolution in March 1949, whose formulation reflected compromise between traditionalists and modernists. The resolution embodied "the main principles on which the constitution of Pakistan is to be based." It declared that "sovereignty over the entire universe belongs to God Almighty alone and the authority which He has delegated to the State of Pakistan through its people for being exercised within the limits prescribed by Him is a sacred trust," that "the principles of democracy, freedom, equality, tolerance and social justice, as enunciated by Islam shall be fully observed," and that "the Muslims shall be enabled to order their lives in the individual and collective spheres in accord with the teaching and requirements of Islam as set out in the Holy Qurʿan and Sunna." The Objectives Resolution has been reproduced as a preamble to the constitutions of 1956, 1962, and 1973.
The idea of Pakistan may have had its share of ambiguities, but its dismissal as a vague emotive symbol hardly illuminates the reasons as to why it received such overwhelmingly popular support among Indian Muslims, especially those in the 'minority provinces' of British India such as U.P.
As the book has demonstrated, local ML functionaries, (U.P.) ML leadership, Muslim modernists at Aligarh, the ulama and even Jinnah at times articulated their vision of Pakistan in terms of an Islamic state.
But what is undeniable is the close association he developed with the ulama, for when he died a little over a year after Pakistan was born, Maulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani, in his funeral oration, described Jinnah as the greatest Muslim after the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb.
Similarly, Usmani asked Pakistanis to remember the Qaid's ceaseless message of Unity, Faith and Discipline and work to fulfil his dream to create a solid bloc of all Muslim states from Karachi to Ankara, from Pakistan to Morocco. He [Jinnah] wanted to see the Muslims of the world united under the banner of Islam as an effective check against the aggressive designs of their enemies
The first formal step toward transforming Pakistan into an Islamic ideological state was taken in March 1949 when the country's first prime minister, Liaquat Ali Khan, presented the Objectives Resolution in the constituent assembly.
Khaliq drew a sharp distinction between this Islamic state and a Muslim state. He claimed that as of now Pakistan was only a Muslim state in view of the majority of its population being Muslim, and indeed could never be an Islamic state by itself. It could certainly fulfill its promise and destiny by bringing together all the believers of Islam into one political unit and it is only then that an Islamic state would be achieved.
One of the earliest Western scholars of Pakistani politics, Keith Callard, observed that Pakistanis seemed to believe in the essential unity of purpose and outlook in the Muslim world: Pakistan was founded to advance the cause of Muslims. Other Muslims might have been expected to be sympathetic, even enthusiastic. But this assumed that other Muslim states would take the same view of the relation between religion and nationality.
Pakistan's pan-Islamic aspirations, however, were neither shared nor supported by the Muslim governments of the time. Nationalism in other parts of the Muslim world was based on ethnicity, language, or territory.
Although Muslim governments were initially unsympathetic to Pakistan's pan-Islamic aspirations, Islamists from the world over were drawn to Pakistan. Controversial figures such as the pro-Nazi former grand mufti of Palestine, Al-Haj Amin al-Husseini, and leaders of Islamist political movements like the Arab Muslim Brotherhood became frequent visitors to the country.
The social scientist, Nasim Ahmad Jawed has conducted a survey of nationalism in pre-divided Pakistan and identifies the links between religion, politics and nationalism in both wings of Pakistan. His findings are fascinating and go some way to explain the differing attitudes of West and East Pakistan to the relationship between Islam and Pakistani nationalism and how this affected the views of people in both wings, especially the views of the peoples of both wings towards each other. In 1969, Jawed conducted a survey on the type of national identity that was used by educated professional people. He found that just over 60% in the East wing professed to have a secular national identity. However, in the West wing, the same figure professed an Islamic and not a secular identity. Furthermore, the same figure in the East wing described their identity in terms of their ethnicity and not in terms of Islam. He found that the opposite was the case in the West wing where Islam was stated to be more important than ethnicity.
The Constitution of 1973 was created by a parliament that was elected in the 1970 elections. In this first ever general elections ...
The 1973 constitution also created certain institutions to channel the application and interpretation of Islam: the Council of Islamic Ideology and the Shariat Court.
Most accounts of Zia ul-Haq's life confirm that he came from a religious family and that religion played an important part in molding his personality.
The Shariat judicial courts were not present in the original Constitution of 1973 and were later inserted in 1979 by General Zia-ul Haq ...
Zia, however, tried to bolster the influence of Islamic parties and the ulama on government and society.
... the military dictator Zia ul Haq (1977–1988) forged a strong alliance between the military and Deobani institutions and movements (e.g. the TJ).
For example, the Barelvi ulama supported the formation of the state of Pakistan and thought that any alliance with Hindus (such as that between the Indian National Congress and the Jamiat ulama-I-Hind [JUH]) was counterproductive.
Ironically, Islamic state politics in Pakistan was mostly in favour of Deobandi, and more recently Ahl-e Hadith/Salafi, institutions. Only a few Deobandi clerics decided to support the Pakistan Movement, but they were highly influential.
The grave impact of that legacy was compunded by the Iranian Revolution, and Zia-ul Haq's anti-Shia policies, which added the violence and regimentation of the organization.
Hence, Pakistan's political experience is integrally related to the struggle of Indian Muslims to find an autonomous political center after their loss of power to the British in the early nineteenth century.
The trauma was extremely severe in Pakistan when the news of secession of East Pakistan as Bangladesh arrived—a psychological setback, complete and humiliating defeat that shattered the prestige of Pakistan Armed Forces.
Pakistan's expression of solidarity was followed, after Independence, by a vigorous pursuit of bilateral relations with Muslim countries like Iran and Turkey.
Pakistan was making a wholehearted bid for the leadership of the Muslim world, or at least for the leadership in achieving its unity.
Following Khaliquzzaman, the Ali brothers had sought to project Pakistan, with its comparatively larger manpower and military strength, as the natural leader of the Islamic world.
As a top ranking ML leader Khaliquzzaman declared, 'Pakistan would bring all Muslim countries together into Islamistan – a pan-Islamic entity'.
Within a few years the president of the Muslim League, Chaudhry Khaliq-uz-Zaman, announced that Pakistan would bring all Muslim countries together into Islamistan – a pan-Islamic entity. None of these developments within the new country elicited approval among Americans for the idea of India's partition ... British Prime Minister Clement Attlee voiced the international consensus at the time when he told the House of Commons of his hope that 'this severance may not endure.' He hoped that the proposed dominions of India and Pakistan would in course of time, come together to form one great Member State of the British Commonwealth of Nations.
During this time most of the Arab world was going through a nationalist awakening. Pan-Islamic dreams involving the unification of Muslim countries, possibly under Pakistani leadership, had little attraction.
The following year, Choudhry Khaliquzzaman toured the Middle East, pleading for the formation of an alliance or confederation of Muslim states. The Arab states, often citing Pakistan's inability to solve its problems with Muslim neighbor Afghanistan, showed little enthusiasm ... Some saw the effort to form 'Islamistan' as a Pakistani attempt to dominate other Muslim states.
The belief that the creation of Pakistan made Pakistan the true leader of Muslim causes around the world led Pakistan's diplomats to vigorously champion the cause of self-determination for fellow Muslims at the United Nations. Pakistan's founders, including Jinnah, supported anti-colonial movements: "Our heart and soul go out in sympathy with those who are struggling for their freedom ... If subjugation and exploitation are carried on, there will be no peace and there will be no end to wars." Pakistani efforts on behalf of Indonesia (1948), Algeria (1948–1949), Tunisia (1948–1949), Morocco (1948–1956) and Eritrea (1960–1991) were significant and initially led to close ties between these countries and Pakistan.
His commitment to jihad—to an Islamic revolution transcending national boundaries, was such that he dreamed one day the "green Islamic flag" would flutter not just over Pakistan and Afghanistan, but also over territories represented by the (former Soviet Union) Central Asian republics. After the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, as the director-general of the Pakistan's intelligence organisation, Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) directorate, an impatient Gul wanted to establish a government of the so-called Mujahideen on Afghan soil. He then ordered an assault using non-state actors on Jalalabad, the first major urban centre across the Khyber Pass from Pakistan, with the aim capturing it and declaring it as the seat of the new administration.
Since then, Pakistan's sectarian tensions have been a major irritant in Iranian-Pakistan relations.
Both Saudi Arabia and Iran used Pakistan as a battleground for their proxy war for the 'hearts and minds' of Pakistani Sunnis and Shias with the resultant rise in sectarian tensions in Pakistan. The rise of the Taliban in Afghanistan in the 1990s further strained Pakistan-Iran relations. Pakistan's support of the Sunni Pashtun organization created problems for Shia Iran for whom a Taliban-controlled Afghanistan was a nightmare.
KARACHI, Pakistan – Iran, which has amassed 200,000 troops on the border with Afghanistan, accused Pakistan on Sunday of sending warplanes to strafe and bombard Afghanistan's last Shiite stronghold, which fell hours earlier to the Taliban, the Sunni militia now controlling the central Asian country.
Taliban officials accused Iran of providing military support to the opposition forces; Tehran radio accused Pakistan of sending its air force to bomb the city in support of the Taliban's advance and said Iran was holding Pakistan responsible for what it termed war crimes at Bamiyan. Pakistan has denied that accusation and previous allegations of direct involvement in the Afghan conflict. Also fueling the volatile situation are ethnic and religious rivalries between the Taliban, who are Sunni Muslims of Afghanistan's dominant Pashtun ethnic group, and the opposition factions, many of which represent other ethnic groups or include Shiite Muslims. Iran, a Shiite Muslim state, has a strong interest in promoting that sect; Pakistan, one of the Taliban's few international allies, is about 80 percent Sunni.
The Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) of Pakistan tops the list of intelligence agencies in the world in 2011, followed by the United States of America's CIA and United Kingdom's MI6. Russia's FSB, France's DGSE and Germany's BND are also on the list, followed by Israel's Mossad, India's RAW, Australia's ASIS and Canada's CSIS.
In December 1971, Pakistan lost half its country, and with over ~90,000 troops of its military becoming POWs, all its earlier myth could not survive this no longer ...
Former Indian Defense Minister Krishna Menon who for years influenced the decisions of late Prime Minister Nehru himself a Kashmiri-put it bluntly last March in an interview with an American newsman when he said India could never agree to a U.N. sponsored plebiscite because 'Kashmir would vote to join Pakistan, and no Indian government responsible for agreeing to the plebiscite could survive.'
Pakistan has contributed more than 160,000 troops to-date in 41 missions spread over 23 countries in almost all continents, it said. The country has remained one of the largest troop contributing countries consistently for many years.
Not since the tenth century had such a maverick crew occupied Islam's holiest sanctuary, and for nearly two weeks Saudi Special Forces assisted by Pakistani and French commandos fought pitched battles to reclaim the compound.
Pakistan definitely defied the United Nations ban on supply of arms to the Bosnian Muslims and sophisticated anti-tank guided missiles were airlifted by the Pakistani intelligence agency, ISI, to help Bosnians fight the Serbs.
Javed Nasir confesses that despite the U.N. ban on supplying arms to the besieged Bosnians, he successfully airlifted sophisticated antitank guided missiles which turned the tide in favour of Bosnian Muslims and forced the Serbs to lift the siege. Under his leadership the ISI also got involved in supporting Chinese Muslims in Xinjiang Province, rebel Muslim groups in the Philippines, and some religious groups in Central Asia.
natural disasters and entrenched insurgencies, abject poverty and feudal kleptocrats, and an economy near meltdown
What this latest debt number also means is that over the first quarter (July–September) of this fiscal year, the government added to the debt by some Rs858 billion, taking the debt to GDP ratio to nearly 69.50%, which in June 2016 stood at around 66.50%.
"Pakistan is a long-standing and "very law-abiding" member of the IAEA, got no opposition from any side at all
Pakistan is home to 108 peaks above 7,000 metres and probably as many peaks above 6,000 m.
About half of the Kalash practice a form of ancient Hinduism infused with old pagan and animist beliefs.
Headquartered in SUPARCO headquarters, Karachi, it has been responsible directly and indirectly for the fabrication, processing and launch of the Muslim Ummah's first experimental satellite, Badr-1. It was a historical event not only for the people of Pakistan but also for the entire Muslim Ummah as it was the first satellite built by any Islamic country based on indigenous resources and manpower.
Pakistan became the first Muslim country to send an official expedition to Antarctica. Pakistan in 1992, established its Jinnah Antarctic Research Station.
To a question Dr. Farah said, Pakistan was the first country to carry out research and establish its station at the same time in Antarctica.
Pakistan's presence in Antarctica also appears imperative as none of the Muslim countries seem to be in a position to undertake research there.
We have already taken the lead amongst the Muslim countries by launching our first expedition in 1990–1991 with an investment of large funds and national talent towards Antarctic research.
This makes Pakistan the first Muslim country to undertake Antarctic Expedition and to establish a research station in Antarctica.
Pakistan is maintaining two summer research stations and one weather observatory in the vicinity of SOR Rondane Mountain Range. Pakistan is also planning to build a full fledged permanent base at Antarctica.
Brahui, tribal confederacy of Balochistān, in western Pakistan. Its members are mostly nomadic goat herdsmen, distributed from the Bolān Pass through the Brāhui Hills to Cape Muarī on the Arabian Sea. The Brahui language is a far northwestern member of the Dravidian family of languages, all of whose other members are spoken in peninsular India; it has borrowed heavily from Sindhi but remains in unexplained isolation among the surrounding Indo-Iranian dialects, to which it bears no genetic relationship. The Brahui are estimated to number about 1,560,000. Physically the Brahui resemble their Baloch and Pashtun neighbours, for the confederacy has been highly absorptive. They are Muslim by creed and Sunnite by sect, though the Muslim rites overlie essentially Indian social customs. Women are not strictly secluded. The 29 tribes owe a loose allegiance to the Brahui khan of Kalāt, which has long been associated with the confederacy's destinies. A group of eight tribes forms what is believed to be the original Brahui nucleus and constitutes about one-eleventh of the Brahui population. To these nuclear tribes have been affiliated many indigenous and captive peoples. The Brahui rose to power in the 17th century, overthrowing a dynasty of Hindu rajas. Under Naṣīr Khān, the confederacy attained its zenith in the 18th century. Their subsequent history centred on the state of Kalāt, which joined Pakistan in 1948.
In Pakistan, the majority of Gujarati-speaking communities are in Karachi including Dawoodi Bohras, Ismaili Khojas, Memons, Kathiawaris, Katchhis, Parsis (Zoroastrians) and Hindus, said Gul Hasan Kalmati, a researcher who authored "Karachi, Sindh Jee Marvi", a book discussing the city and its indigenous communities. Although there are no official statistics available, community leaders claim that there are three million Gujarati-speakers in Karachi – roughly around 15 percent of the city's entire population.
Shaikh Muhammad Feroze, the chairman of the committee, said during a press conference on Friday that political parties and the government should acknowledge the sacrifices of their ancestors. 'We live in Sindh and feel proud to be called Sindhis rather than Bengalis. We appeal to Sindhi nationalists and Sindhis to help us in our struggle,' he added. He said that Bengali-speaking people were not given educational rights as they did not possess national identity cards. 'Our children can't get an education after matriculation because colleges ask for the identity cards but the National Database Registration Authority has never accepted us as Pakistani citizens.' Shaikh said that over three million Bengalis and Biharis were grateful to the government for accepting them as Pakistani citizens. 'We postponed a hunger strike planned for March 25 after the government made decisions,' he added. 'We can go on a hunger strike, if our rights are not given.' He claimed that there were 200 settlements of Bengali-speaking people across the country, including 132 in Karachi. They populate different parts of Pakistan, including Thatta, Badin, Hyderabad, Tando Adam and Lahore.
Their large-scale migration had made Karachi one of the largest Rohingya population centres outside Myanmar but afterwards the situation started turning against them.
Insa is one of a few thousand Uighur Muslims who live in Gilgit. The community is a mix of generations. Some left Xinjiang and the thriving trading town of Kashgar in 1949, while others are later arrivals. All say they were forced to leave as they were the victims of cultural and religious oppression in China.
The refugees claim that Indian soldiers forced them out of their homes ... For Kashmiri Muslims, Pakistan appeared safer than Indian-held Kashmir ... "She was also raped by the soldiers," Ahmad said. "Many of the other female refugees were also raped."
One of the Pakistan's smallest ethnic communities is made up of people of African origin, known as Sidi. The African-Pakistanis live in Karachi and other parts of the Sindh and Baluchistan provinces in abject poverty, but they rarely complain of discrimination. Although this small Muslim community is not on the verge of extinction, their growing concern is how to maintain their distinct African identity in the midst of the dominating South Asian cultures.
Pakistan has the second largest Muslim population in the world after Indonesia.
Religion: The overwhelming majority of the population (96.4 percent) is Muslim, of whom approximately 95 percent are Sunni and 5 percent Shia.
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Sūfī Islam in Pakistan is represented at two levels. The first is the populist Sufism of the rural masses, associated with unorthodox religious rituals and practices, belief in the intercessory powers of saints, pilgrimage and veneration at their shrines, and a binding spiritual relationship between the shaykh or pir (master) and murīd (disciple). Many Muslims in rural areas of Pakistan, where orthodox Islam has yet to penetrate effectively, identify themselves with some pir, living or dead, and seek his intercession for the solution of their worldly problems and for salvation in the hereafter.
The other strain is that of scholastic or intellectual Sufism, a recent phenomenon based in urban areas and becoming increasingly popular in educated circles. Influenced by the writings of the medieval theologian al-Ghazālī (d. 1111), the Sūfī reformer Shaykh Aḥmad Sirhindī (d. 1624), and Shāh Walī Allāh (d. 1762), and by the spiritual experiences of the masters of the Suhrawardī and Naqshbandī orders, these modern Sūfīs are rearticulating Islamic metaphysics as an answer to Western materialism.
The logic of the hostage theory tied the treatment of Muslim minorities in India to the treatment meted out to Hindus in Pakistan.
Within the subcontinent, ML propaganda claimed that besides liberating the 'majority provinces' Muslims it would guarantee protection for Muslims who would be left behind in Hindu India. In this regard, it repeatedly stressed the hostage population theory that held that 'hostage' Hindu and Sikh minorities inside Pakistan would guarantee Hindu India's good behaviour towards its own Muslim minority.
Nazim-ud-Din favored an Islamic state not just out of political expediency but also because of his deep religious belief in its efficacy and practicality ... Nazim-ud-Din commented:'I do not agree that religion is a private affair of the individual nor do I agree that in an Islamic state every citizen has identical rights, no matter what his caste, creed or faith be'.
But many Hindu families who stayed in Pakistan after partition have already lost faith and migrated to India.
Muslims attacked more than 30 Hindu temples across Pakistan today, and the Government of this overwhelmingly Muslim nation closed offices and schools for a day to protest the destruction of a mosque in India.
The Hindu residential locality that is close to Mr Bugti's fortress-like house was particularly badly hit. Mr Bugti says 32 Hindus were killed by firing from the government side in exchanges that followed an attack on a government convoy last Thursday.
The majority of Muslims in the country are Sunni, with a Shi'a minority ranging between 10 to 20 percent.
Interestingly, and somewhat intriguingly, 2 per cent of the Pakistanis surveyed see themselves as atheists, up from 1pc in 2005.
Pakistani food is similar to that of northern India, with a splash of Middle Eastern influence derived from other Muslim cultures over the centuries.
Pakistani cuisine—a fusion of Central Asian, Middle Eastern, Persian, and Indian traditions—is known for being spicy and for its aromatic and flavorful richness.
Azad Jammu and Kashmir (Urdu: آزاد جموں و کشمیر Āzād Jammū̃ o Kaśmīr, translation: Free Jammu and Kashmir), abbreviated as AJK and commonly known as Azad Kashmir, is a nominally self-governing jurisdiction administered by Pakistan. The territory lies west of the Indian-administered state of Jammu and Kashmir, and was part of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir.
Azad Kashmir is part of the greater Kashmir region, which is the subject of a long-running conflict between Pakistan and India. The territory shares a border with Gilgit-Baltistan, together with which it is referred to by the United Nations and other international organisations as "Pakistan administered Kashmir".
Azad Kashmir is one-sixth of the size of Gilgit-Baltistan. The territory also borders Pakistan's Punjab province to the south and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province to the west. To the east, Azad Kashmir is separated from the state of Jammu and Kashmir by the Line of Control, the de facto border between India and Pakistan. Azad Kashmir has a total area of 13,297 square kilometres (5,134 sq mi), and a total population of 4,045,366 as per the 2017 Census.
The territory has a parliamentary form of government modeled after the Westminster system, with its capital located at Muzaffarabad. The President is the constitutional head of state, while the Prime Minister, supported by a Council of Ministers, is the chief executive. The unicameral Azad Kashmir Legislative Assembly elects both the Prime Minister and President. The state has its own Supreme Court and a High Court, while the Government of Pakistan's Ministry of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan serves as a link with Azad Kashmir's government, although Azad Kashmir is not represented in the Parliament of Pakistan.
The 2005 earthquake killed 100,000 people and left another three million people displaced, with widespread devastation. Since then, with help from the Government of Pakistan and foreign donors, reconstruction of infrastructure is underway. Azad Kashmir's economy largely depends on agriculture, services, tourism, and remittances sent by members of the British Mirpuri community. Nearly 87% of the households own farms in Azad Kashmir, while the region has a literacy rate of approximately 72% and has the highest school enrollment in Pakistan.Balochistan, Pakistan
Balochistan (; Urdu: بلوچِستان)
is one of the four provinces of Pakistan. It is the largest province in terms of land area, forming the southwestern region of the country. Its provincial capital and largest city is Quetta.
Balochistan shares borders with Punjab and the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the northeast, Sindh to the east and southeast, the Arabian Sea to the south, Iran to the west and Afghanistan to the north and northwest.
The main ethnic groups in the province are the Baloch people and the Pashtuns, who constitute 52% and 36% of the population respectively (according to the preliminary 2011 census). The remaining 12% comprises smaller communities of Brahuis, Hazaras, Sindhis, Punjabis and other settlers such as the Uzbeks and Turkmens. The name "Balochistan" means "the land of the Baloch". Largely underdeveloped, its provincial economy is dominated by natural resources, especially its natural gas fields, estimated to have sufficient capacity to supply Pakistan's demands over the medium to long term. Aside from Quetta, the second-largest city of the province is Turbat in the south, while another area of major economic importance is Gwadar Port on the Arabian Sea.
Balochistan is noted for its unique culture and extremely dry desert climate.Bangladesh Liberation War
The Bangladesh Liberation War (Bengali: মুক্তিযুদ্ধ Muktijuddho), also known as the Bangladesh War of Independence, or simply the Liberation War in Bangladesh, was a revolution and armed conflict sparked by the rise of the Bengali nationalist and self-determination movement in what was then East Pakistan during the 1971 Bangladesh genocide. It resulted in the independence of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. The war began after the Pakistani military junta based in West Pakistan launched Operation Searchlight against the people of East Pakistan on the night of 25 March 1971. It pursued the systematic elimination of nationalist Bengali civilians, students, intelligentsia, religious minorities and armed personnel. The junta annulled the results of the 1970 elections and arrested Prime minister-designate Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. The war ended on 16 December 1971 after West Pakistan surrendered.
Rural and urban areas across East Pakistan saw extensive military operations and air strikes to suppress the tide of civil disobedience that formed following the 1970 election stalemate. The Pakistan Army, which had the backing of Islamists, created radical religious militias – the Razakars, Al-Badr and Al-Shams – to assist it during raids on the local populace. Urdu-speaking Biharis in Bangladesh (ethnic minority) were also in support of Pakistani military. Members of the Pakistani military and supporting militias engaged in mass murder, deportation and genocidal rape. The capital Dhaka was the scene of numerous massacres, including the Operation Searchlight and Dhaka University massacre. An estimated 10 million Bengali refugees fled to neighboring India, while 30 million were internally displaced. Sectarian violence broke out between Bengalis and Urdu-speaking immigrants. An academic consensus prevails that the atrocities committed by the Pakistani military were a genocide.
The Bangladeshi Declaration of Independence was proclaimed from Chittagong by members of the Mukti Bahini – the national liberation army formed by Bengali military, paramilitary and civilians. The East Bengal Regiment and the East Pakistan Rifles played a crucial role in the resistance. Led by General M. A. G. Osmani and eleven sector commanders, the Bangladesh Forces waged a mass guerrilla war against the Pakistani military. They liberated numerous towns and cities in the initial months of the conflict. The Pakistan Army regained momentum in the monsoon. Bengali guerrillas carried out widespread sabotage, including Operation Jackpot against the Pakistan Navy. The nascent Bangladesh Air Force flew sorties against Pakistani military bases. By November, the Bangladesh forces restricted the Pakistani military to its barracks during the night. They secured control of most parts of the countryside.The Provisional Government of Bangladesh was formed on 17 April 1971 in Mujibnagar and moved to Calcutta as a government in exile. Bengali members of the Pakistani civil, military and diplomatic corps defected to the Bangladeshi provisional government. Thousands of Bengali families were interned in West Pakistan, from where many escaped to Afghanistan. Bengali cultural activists operated the clandestine Free Bengal Radio Station. The plight of millions of war-ravaged Bengali civilians caused worldwide outrage and alarm. The Indian state led by Indira Gandhi provided substantial diplomatic, economic and military support to Bangladeshi nationalists. British, Indian and American musicians organised the world's first benefit concert in New York City to support the Bangladeshi people. Senator Ted Kennedy in the United States led a congressional campaign for an end to Pakistani military persecution; while US diplomats in East Pakistan strongly dissented with the Nixon administration's close ties to the Pakistani military dictator Yahya Khan.
India joined the war on 3 December 1971, after Pakistan launched preemptive air strikes on North India. The subsequent Indo-Pakistani War witnessed engagements on two war fronts. With air supremacy achieved in the eastern theatre and the rapid advance of the Allied Forces of Bangladesh and India, Pakistan surrendered in Dacca on 16 December 1971.
The war changed the geopolitical landscape of South Asia, with the emergence of Bangladesh as the seventh-most populous country in the world. Due to complex regional alliances, the war was a major episode in Cold War tensions involving the United States, the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China. The majority of member states in the United Nations recognised Bangladesh as a sovereign nation in 1972.CAC/PAC JF-17 Thunder
The PAC JF-17 Thunder (Urdu: جے ایف-١٧ گرج), or CAC FC-1 Xiaolong (pinyin: Xiāo Lóng; literally: 'Fierce Dragon'), is a lightweight, single-engine, multi-role combat aircraft developed jointly by the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) and the Chengdu Aircraft Corporation (CAC) of China. The JF-17 can be used for aerial reconnaissance, ground attack and aircraft interception. Its designation "JF-17" by Pakistan is short for "Joint Fighter-17", while the designation and name "FC-1 Xiaolong" by China means "Fighter China-1 Fierce Dragon".
The JF-17 can deploy diverse ordnance, including air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles, and a 23 mm GSh-23-2 twin-barrel autocannon. Powered by a Guizhou WS-13 or Klimov RD-93 afterburning turbofan, it has a top speed of Mach 1.8. The JF-17 is to become the backbone of the Pakistan Air Force (PAF), complementing the General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon at half the cost. The PAF inducted its first JF-17 squadron in February 2010. In 2015 Pakistan produced 16 JF-17s. As of 2016, Pakistan is believed to have the capacity to produce 25 JF-17 per year. 58% of the airframe is Pakistani and 42% Chinese/Russian-origin. As of December 2016 Pakistan Aeronautical Complex has manufactured 70 jets in the country for use by the Pakistan Air Force of the Block 1 type, and 33 jets of the Block 2 type.The Pakistan Air Force plans, by 2017, to induct a twin-seater version known as the JF-17B for both enhanced operational capability and training. Preparations for a more advanced and technologically sophisticated block III version of the aircraft are underway and the AESA radar, KJ-7A, has been developed, which can track 15 targets and engage 4 targets simultaneously.Since its induction in 2011, the JF-17 Thunder has accumulated 19,000 hours of operational flight. The JF-17 has seen active military service as it is used by the Pakistan Air Force to bomb militant positions in the War in North-West Pakistan, using both unguided munitions and guided missiles for precision strike capability.Death of Osama bin Laden
Osama bin Laden, the founder and first leader of the Islamist group Al-Qaeda, was killed in Pakistan on May 2, 2011, shortly after 1:00 am PKT (20:00 UTC, May 1) by United States Navy SEALs of the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group (also known as DEVGRU or SEAL Team Six). The operation, code-named Operation Neptune Spear, was carried out in a CIA-led operation with Joint Special Operations Command, commonly known as JSOC, coordinating the Special Mission Units involved in the raid. In addition to SEAL Team Six, participating units under JSOC included the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne)—also known as "Night Stalkers"—and operators from the CIA's Special Activities Division, which recruits heavily from former JSOC Special Mission Units. The operation ended a nearly 10-year search for bin Laden, following his role in the September 11 attacks on the United States.
The raid on bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan was launched from Afghanistan. U.S. military officials said that after the raid U.S. forces took bin Laden's body to Afghanistan for identification, then buried him at sea within 24 hours of his death in accordance with Islamic tradition.Al-Qaeda confirmed the death on May 6 with posts made on militant websites, vowing to avenge the killing. Other Pakistani militant groups, including the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, vowed retaliation against the U.S. and against Pakistan for not preventing the operation. The raid was supported by over 90% of the American public, was welcomed by the United Nations, NATO, the European Union and a large number of governments, but was condemned by others, including two-thirds of the Pakistani public. Legal and ethical aspects of the killing, such as his not being taken alive despite being unarmed, were questioned by others, including Amnesty International. Also controversial was the decision not to release any photographic or DNA evidence of bin Laden's death to the public.In the aftermath of the killing, Pakistani Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani formed a commission under Senior Justice Javed Iqbal to investigate the circumstances surrounding the attack. The resulting Abbottabad Commission Report, which revealed Pakistani state military and intelligence authorities' "collective failure" that enabled bin Laden to hide in Pakistan for nine years, was leaked to Al Jazeera on July 8, 2013.Imran Khan
Imran Ahmed Khan Niazi (Urdu: عمران احمد خان نیازی; born 5 October 1952) is a Pakistani politician and former international cricketer who is the 22nd Prime Minister of Pakistan.
He is also the founder of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). Previously, he was a member of the National Assembly of Pakistan from 2002 to 2007, and again from 2013 to 2018. He played international cricket for two decades, and later developed philanthropic projects such as the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital & Research Centre and Namal College.Khan was born to an upper-middle class Pashtun family in Lahore, Punjab, in 1952; he was educated at Aitchison College in Lahore, then the Royal Grammar School Worcester in Worcester, England, and later at Keble College, Oxford. He started playing cricket at the age of 13. Initially playing for his college and later for Worcestershire, Khan made his debut for the Pakistan national cricket team at the age of 18, during the 1971 series against England at Edgbaston, Birmingham. After graduating from Oxford, he made his home debut for Pakistan in 1976, and played until 1992. He also served as the team's captain intermittently between 1982 and 1992. Notably, he led Pakistan to victory at the 1992 Cricket World Cup, Pakistan's first and only victory in the Cricket World Cup. Khan retired from cricket in 1992, as one of Pakistan's most successful players. In total he made 3,807 runs and took 362 wickets in Test cricket, and is one of eight world cricketers to have achieved an 'All-rounder's Triple' in Test matches. After his retirement, in his 1994 autobiography, Imran Khan admitted that he tampered with the ball to the extent of using a bottle top. In 2003, he became a coach in Pakistan domestic circuit. Later, in 2010, he was inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.
In 1991, he launched a fundraising campaign to set up a cancer hospital in memory of his mother. He raised $25 million to set up a hospital in Lahore in 1994, and later in 2015 a second hospital in Peshawar. Khan remains a prominent philanthropist and commentator, and served as the chancellor of Bradford University between 2005 and 2014 and was the recipient of an honorary fellowship by the Royal College of Physicians in 2012.In April 1996, Khan founded the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (lit: Pakistan Movement for Justice), a centrist political party, and became the party's national leader. Khan contested for a seat in the National Assembly in October 2002 and served as an opposition member from Mianwali until 2007. He was again elected to the parliament in the 2013 elections, when his party emerged as the second largest in the country by popular vote. Khan served as the parliamentary leader of the party and led the third-largest block of parliamentarians in the National Assembly from 2013 to 2018. His party also led a coalition government in the north-western province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. In the 2018 general elections, his party won the largest number of seats and defeated the ruling PML-N, bringing Khan to premiership and the PTI into federal government for the first time.Khan remains a popular public figure and is the author of, among other publications, Pakistan: A Personal History.Indo-Pakistani War of 1965
The Indo-Pakistani War of 1965 was a culmination of skirmishes that took place between April 1965 and September 1965 between Pakistan and India. The conflict began following Pakistan's Operation Gibraltar, which was designed to infiltrate forces into Jammu and Kashmir to precipitate an insurgency against Indian rule. India retaliated by launching a full-scale military attack on West Pakistan. The seventeen-day war caused thousands of casualties on both sides and witnessed the largest engagement of armored vehicles and the largest tank battle since World War II. Hostilities between the two countries ended after a United Nations-mandated ceasefire was declared following diplomatic intervention by the Soviet Union and the United States, and the subsequent issuance of the Tashkent Declaration. Much of the war was fought by the countries' land forces in Kashmir and along the border between India and Pakistan. This war saw the largest amassing of troops in Kashmir since the Partition of British India in 1947, a number that was overshadowed only during the 2001–2002 military standoff between India and Pakistan. Most of the battles were fought by opposing infantry and armoured units, with substantial backing from air forces, and naval operations. Many details of this war, like those of other Indo-Pakistani Wars, remain unclear.India had the upper hand over Pakistan when the ceasefire was declared. Although the two countries fought to a standoff, the conflict is seen as a strategic and political defeat for Pakistan, as it had neither succeeded in fomenting insurrection in Kashmir nor had it been able to gain meaningful support at an international level.Internationally, the war was viewed in the context of the greater Cold War, and resulted in a significant geopolitical shift in the subcontinent. Before the war, the United States and the United Kingdom had been major material allies of both India and Pakistan, as their primary suppliers of military hardware and foreign developmental aid. During and after the conflict, both India and Pakistan felt betrayed by the perceived lack of support by the western powers for their respective positions; those feelings of betrayal were increased with the imposition of an American and British embargo on military aid to the opposing sides. As a consequence, India and Pakistan openly developed closer relationships with the Soviet Union and China, respectively. The perceived negative stance of the western powers during the conflict, and during the 1971 war, has continued to affect relations between the West and the subcontinent. In spite of improved relations with the U.S. and Britain since the end of the Cold War, the conflict generated a deep distrust of both countries within the subcontinent which to an extent lingers to this day.Indo-Pakistani War of 1971
The Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 was a military confrontation between India and Pakistan that occurred during the liberation war in East Pakistan from 3 December 1971 to the fall of Dacca (Dhaka) on 16 December 1971. The war began with preemptive aerial strikes on 11 Indian air stations, which led to the commencement of hostilities with Pakistan and Indian entry into the war of independence in East Pakistan on the side of Bengali nationalist forces. Lasting just 13 days, it is one of the shortest wars in history.During the war, Indian and Pakistani militaries simultaneously clashed on the eastern and western fronts; the war ended after the Eastern Command of the Pakistan military signed the Instrument of Surrender on 16 December 1971 in Dhaka, marking the formation of East Pakistan as the new nation of Bangladesh. Officially, East Pakistan had earlier called for its secession from the unity of Pakistan on 26 March 1971. Approximately 90,000 to 93,000 Pakistani servicemen were taken prisoner by the Indian Army, which included 79,676 to 81,000 uniformed personnel of the Pakistan Armed Forces, including some Bengali soldiers who had remained loyal to Pakistan. The remaining 10,324 to 12,500 prisoners were civilians, either family members of the military personnel or collaborators (razakars). It is estimated that between 300,000 and 3,000,000 civilians were killed in Bangladesh. As a result of the conflict, a further eight to ten million people fled the country to seek refuge in India.During the 1971 Bangladesh war for independence, members of the Pakistani military and supporting Islamist militias called the Razakars raped between 200,000 and 400,000 Bangladeshi women and girls in a systematic campaign of genocidal rape.Indo-Pakistani wars and conflicts
Since the partition of British India in 1947 and creation of modern states of India and Pakistan, the two countries have been involved in a number of wars, conflicts and military stand-offs. Most of these wars and conflicts have ended up with defeat or disaster for Pakistan.
The Kashmir issue has been the main cause of all major conflicts between the two countries with the exception of the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 where conflict originated due to turmoil in erstwhile East Pakistan (now Bangladesh).Karachi
Karachi (Urdu: کراچی; ALA-LC: Karācī, IPA: [kəˈraːtʃi] (listen); Sindhi: ڪراچي) is the capital of the Pakistani province of Sindh. It is the most populous city in Pakistan, and fifth-most-populous city proper in the world. Ranked as a beta world city, the city is Pakistan's premier industrial and financial centre and is considered as the cultural, economic, philanthropic, educational, and political hub of the country. Karachi is also Pakistan's most cosmopolitan city. Situated on the Arabian Sea, Karachi serves as a transport hub, and is home to Pakistan's two largest seaports, the Port of Karachi and Port Bin Qasim, as well as the Pakistan's busiest airport, Jinnah International Airport.
Though the Karachi region has been inhabited for millennia, the city was founded as the fortified village of Kolachi in 1729. The settlement drastically increased in importance with the arrival of British East India Company in the mid 19th century, who not only embarked on major works to transform the city into a major seaport, but also connected it with their extensive railway network. By the time of the Partition of British India, the city was the largest in Sindh with an estimated population of 400,000. Following the independence of Pakistan, the city's population increased dramatically with the arrival of millions of Muslim refugees from India. The city experienced rapid economic growth following independence, attracting migrants from throughout Pakistan and South Asia.Karachi is one of Pakistan's most secular and socially liberal cities. It is also the most linguistically, ethnically, and religiously diverse city in Pakistan. Karachi’s population was enumerated at 14.9 million in the 2017 census, though the figure was immediately disputed by various factions as a severe underestimate, with some sources estimating a population of up to 30 million. Karachi is one of the world's fastest growing cities, and has communities representing almost every ethnic group in Pakistan. Karachi is home to over 2 million Bangladeshi immigrants, 1 million Afghan refugees, and up to 400,000 Rohingyas from Myanmar.Karachi is now Pakistan's premier industrial and financial centre. The city has a formal economy estimated to be worth $113 billion as of 2014 which is the largest in Pakistan. Karachi collects over a third of Pakistan's tax revenue, and generates approximately 20% of Pakistan's GDP. Approximately 30% of Pakistani industrial output is from Karachi, while Karachi's ports handle approximately 95% of Pakistan's foreign trade. Approximately 90% of the multinational corporations operating in Pakistan are headquartered in Karachi. Karachi is considered to be Pakistan’s fashion capital, and has hosted the annual Karachi Fashion Week since 2009.Kargil War
The Kargil War, also known as the Kargil conflict,[note (I)] was an armed conflict between India and Pakistan that took place between May and July 1999 in the Kargil district of Kashmir and elsewhere along the Line of Control (LOC). In India, the conflict is also referred to as Operation Vijay (Hindi: विजय, literally "Victory") which was the name of the Indian operation to clear the Kargil sector.The cause of the war was the infiltration of Pakistani soldiers disguised as Kashmiri militants into positions on the Indian side of the LOC, which serves as the de facto border between the two states. During the initial stages of the war, Pakistan blamed the fighting entirely on independent Kashmiri insurgents, but documents left behind by casualties and later statements by Pakistan's Prime Minister and Chief of Army Staff showed involvement of Pakistani paramilitary forces, led by General Ashraf Rashid. The Indian Army, later supported by the Indian Air Force, recaptured a majority of the positions on the Indian side of the LOC infiltrated by the Pakistani troops and militants. Facing international diplomatic opposition, the Pakistani forces withdrew from the remaining Indian positions along the LOC.
The war is one of the most recent examples of high-altitude warfare in mountainous terrain, which posed significant logistical problems for the combating sides. It is also one of the very few instances of direct, conventional warfare between nuclear states (i.e., those possessing nuclear weapons). India had conducted its first successful test in 1974; Pakistan, which had been developing its nuclear capability in secret since around the same time, conducted its first known tests in 1998, just two weeks after a second series of tests by India.Kashmir
Kashmir is the northernmost geographical region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term "Kashmir" denoted only the Kashmir Valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal Range. Today, it denotes a larger area that includes the Indian-administered territory of Jammu and Kashmir (which includes the divisions Jammu, Kashmir Valley, and Ladakh), the Pakistani-administered territories of Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan, and Chinese-administered territories of Aksai Chin and the Trans-Karakoram Tract.In the first half of the 1st millennium, the Kashmir region became an important centre of Hinduism and later of Buddhism; later still, in the ninth century, Kashmir Shaivism arose. In 1339, Shah Mir became the first Muslim ruler of Kashmir, inaugurating the Salatin-i-Kashmir or Shah Mir dynasty. Kashmir was part of the Mughal Empire from 1586 to 1751, and thereafter, until 1820, of the Afghan Durrani Empire. That year, the Sikhs, under Ranjit Singh, annexed Kashmir. In 1846, after the Sikh defeat in the First Anglo-Sikh War, and upon the purchase of the region from the British under the Treaty of Amritsar, the Raja of Jammu, Gulab Singh, became the new ruler of Kashmir. The rule of his descendants, under the paramountcy (or tutelage) of the British Crown, lasted until the partition of India in 1947, when the former princely state of the British Raj was claimed by both Pakistan and India.
Since 1947, the greater region of Jammu and Kashmir has been embroiled in a territorial dispute between India, Pakistan and China—with India controlling approximately 43% of the land area of the region and 70% of its population. Pakistan controls roughly 37% of the land, while China controls the remaining 20%. Kashmir is widely regarded as the world's most militarized zone—the region has witnessed three major wars between India and Pakistan, another limited war between India and China, numerous border skirmishes, high mountainous warfare, an ongoing insurgency, a Hindu exodus and internal civilian unrest.Kashmir conflict
The Kashmir conflict is a territorial conflict primarily between India and Pakistan, having started just after the partition of India in 1947. China has at times played a minor role. India and Pakistan have fought three wars over Kashmir, including the Indo-Pakistani Wars of 1947 and 1965, as well as the Kargil War of 1999. The two countries have also been involved in several skirmishes over control of the Siachen Glacier.
India claims the entire princely state of Jammu and Kashmir, and, as of 2010, administers approximately 43% of the region. It controls Jammu, the Kashmir Valley, Ladakh, and the Siachen Glacier. India's claims are contested by Pakistan, which administers approximately 37% of the region, namely Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan. China currently administers the remaining 20% mostly uninhabited areas, the Shaksgam Valley, and the Aksai Chin region.
The present conflict is in Kashmir Valley. The root of conflict between the Kashmiri insurgents and the Indian government is tied to a dispute over local autonomy and based on the demand for self-determination. Democratic development was limited in Kashmir until the late 1970s, and by 1988, many of the democratic reforms introduced by the Indian Government had been reversed. Non-violent channels for expressing discontent were thereafter limited and caused a dramatic increase in support for insurgents advocating violent secession from India. In 1987, a disputed state election created a catalyst for the insurgency when it resulted in some of the state's legislative assembly members forming armed insurgent groups. In July 1988 a series of demonstrations, strikes and attacks on the Indian Government began the Kashmir Insurgency.
Although thousands of people have died as a result of the turmoil in Jammu and Kashmir, the conflict has become less deadly in recent years. Protest movements created to voice Kashmir's disputes and grievances with the Indian government, specifically the Indian Military, have been active in Jammu and Kashmir since 1989. Elections held in 2008 were generally regarded as fair by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and had a high voter turnout in spite of calls by separatist militants for a boycott. The election resulted in the creation of the pro-India Jammu and Kashmir National Conference, which then formed a government in the state. According to Voice of America, many analysts have interpreted the high voter turnout in this election as a sign that the people of Kashmir endorsed Indian rule in the state. But in 2010 unrest erupted after an alleged fake encounter between local youth and security forces. Thousands of youths pelted security forces with rocks, burned government offices and attacked railway stations and official vehicles in steadily intensifying violence. The Indian government blamed separatists and Lashkar-e-Taiba, a Pakistan-based militant group for stoking the 2010 protests.Elections held in 2014 saw the highest voters turnout in 26 years of history in Jammu and Kashmir. However, analysts explain that the high voter turnout in Kashmir is not an endorsement of Indian rule by the Kashmiri population, rather most people vote for daily issues such as food and electricity. An opinion poll conducted by the Chatham House international affairs think tank found that in the Kashmir valley – the mainly Muslim area in Indian Kashmir at the centre of the insurgency – support for independence varies between 74% to 95% in its various districts. Support for remaining with India was, however, extremely high in predominantly Hindu Jammu and Buddhist Ladakh.
According to scholars, Indian forces have committed many human rights abuses and acts of terror against Kashmiri civilian population including extrajudicial killing, rape, torture and enforced disappearances. Crimes by militants have also happened but are not comparable in scale with the crimes of Indian forces.
According to Amnesty International, as of June 2015, no member of the Indian military deployed in Jammu and Kashmir has been tried for human rights violations in a civilian court, although there have been military court martials held. Amnesty International welcomed this move but cautioned that justice should be consistently delivered and prosecutions of security forces personnel be held in civilian courts. Amnesty International has also accused the Indian government of refusing to prosecute perpetrators of abuses in the region.Kashmir's accession to India was provisional, and conditional on a plebiscite, and for this reason had a different constitutional status to other Indian states. In October 2015 Jammu and Kashmir High Court said that article 370 is "permanent" and Jammu and Kashmir did not merge with India the way other princely states merged but retained special status and limited sovereignty under the Indian constitution.In 2016 unrest erupted after killing of a Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani by Indian security forces. Further unrest erupted after the 2019 Pulwama attack.Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (abbreviated as KP or KPK; Urdu: خیبر پختونخوا; Pashto: خیبر پښتونخوا) is one of the four administrative provinces of Pakistan, located in the northwestern region of the country along the international border with Afghanistan. It was previously known as the North-West Frontier Province (NWFP) until 2010 when the name was changed to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa by the 18th Amendment to Pakistan's Constitution, and is known colloquially by various other names. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is the third-largest province of Pakistan by the size of both population and economy, though it is geographically the smallest of four. Within Pakistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa shares a border with Punjab, Balochistan, Azad Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan, and Islamabad. It comprises 10.5% of Pakistan's economy, and is home to 17.9% of Pakistan's total population, with the majority of the province's inhabitants being Pashtuns. The province is the site of the ancient kingdom Gandhara, including the ruins of its capital Pushkalavati near modern-day Charsadda. Originally a stronghold of Buddhism, the history of the region was characterized by frequent invasions under various Empires due to its geographical proximity to the Khyber Pass.
Since the 9/11 attacks in the United States in 2001, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has been a major theatre of militancy and terrorism which intensified when the Taliban began an unsuccessful attempt to seize the control of the province in 2004. With the launch of Operation Zarb-e-Azb against the Taliban insurgency, the casualty and crime rates in the country as a whole dropped by 40.0% as compared to 2011–13, with even greater drops noted in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas. As of July 2014, about 929,859 people were reported to be internally displaced from North Waziristan to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as a result of Operation Zarb-e-Azb.On March 2, 2017, the Government of Pakistan considered a proposal to merge the Federally Administered Tribal Areas with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and to repeal the Frontier Crimes Regulations, which are currently applicable to the tribal areas. However, some political parties have opposed the merger, and called for the tribal areas to instead become a separate province of Pakistan. On 24 May 2018, the National Assembly of Pakistan voted in favour of an amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan to merge the Federally Administered Tribal Areas with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly then approved the historic FATA-KP merger bill on 28 May 2018 making FATA officially part of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which was then signed by President Mamnoon Hussain, completing the process of this historic merger.Muhammad Ali Jinnah
Muhammad Ali Jinnah (born Mahomedali Jinnahbhai; 25 December 1876 – 11 September 1948) was a lawyer, politician and the founder of Pakistan. Jinnah served as the leader of the All-India Muslim League from 1913 until Pakistan's independence on 14 August 1947, and then as Pakistan's first Governor-General until his death. He is revered in Pakistan as Quaid-i-Azam ("Great Leader") and Baba-i-Qaum, "Father of the Nation"). His birthday is considered a national holiday in Pakistan.Born at Wazir Mansion in Karachi, Jinnah was trained as a barrister at Lincoln's Inn in London. Upon his return to British India, he enrolled at the Bombay High Court, and took an interest in national politics, which eventually replaced his legal practice. Jinnah rose to prominence in the Indian National Congress in the first two decades of the 20th century. In these early years of his political career, Jinnah advocated Hindu–Muslim unity, helping to shape the 1916 Lucknow Pact between the Congress and the All-India Muslim League, in which Jinnah had also become prominent. Jinnah became a key leader in the All India Home Rule League, and proposed a fourteen-point constitutional reform plan to safeguard the political rights of Muslims. In 1920, however, Jinnah resigned from the Congress when it agreed to follow a campaign of satyagraha, which he regarded as political anarchy.
By 1940, Jinnah had come to believe that Muslims of the Indian subcontinent should have their own state. In that year, the Muslim League, led by Jinnah, passed the Lahore Resolution, demanding a separate nation. During the Second World War, the League gained strength while leaders of the Congress were imprisoned, and in the elections held shortly after the war, it won most of the seats reserved for Muslims. Ultimately, the Congress and the Muslim League could not reach a power-sharing formula for the subcontinent to be united as a single state, leading all parties to agree to the independence of a predominantly Hindu India, and for a Muslim-majority state of Pakistan.
As the first Governor-General of Pakistan, Jinnah worked to establish the new nation's government and policies, and to aid the millions of Muslim migrants who had emigrated from the new nation of India to Pakistan after independence, personally supervising the establishment of refugee camps. Jinnah died at age 71 in September 1948, just over a year after Pakistan gained independence from the United Kingdom. He left a deep and respected legacy in Pakistan. Innumerable streets, roads and localities in the world are named after Jinnah. Several universities and public buildings in Pakistan bear Jinnah's name. According to his biographer, Stanley Wolpert, he remains Pakistan's greatest leader.Pakistan Air Force
The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) (Urdu: پاک فِضائیہ—Pāk Fizāʾiyah, Urdu: [pɑːk fɪzɑːɪjəɦ] or alternatively Urdu: پاکستان ہوائی فوج, Reporting name: PAF) is the aerial warfare uniform service branch of the Pakistan Armed Forces, tasked primarily with the aerial defence of Pakistan, with a secondary role of providing air support to the Pakistan Army and the Pakistan Navy. The PAF has a tertiary role of providing strategic air transport and logistics capability to Pakistan. As of 2017, per IISS, the PAF has 65,000 personnel. It operates 883 aircraft.Its primary mandate and mission is "to provide, in synergy with other inter-services, the most efficient, assured and cost effective aerial Defence of Pakistan." Since its establishment in 1947, the PAF has been involved in various combat operations, providing aerial support to Inter–Services's operations and relief efforts. Under the Article 243, the Constitution of Pakistan appoints the President of Pakistan as the civilian Commander-in-Chief. The Chief of Air Staff (CAS), by statute a four-star air officer Air Chief Marshal, is appointed by the President with the consultation and confirmation needed from the Prime Minister of Pakistan. The Pakistan Air Force is currently commanded by Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan.Pakistan Super League
Pakistan Super League (Urdu: پاکستان سپر لیگ; PSL) is a Twenty20 cricket league, founded in Lahore on 9 September 2015 with five teams and now comprises six teams. Instead of operating as an association of independently owned teams, the league is a single entity in which each franchise is owned and controlled by investors.
The commercial rights to the initial franchises were sold for US$93 million for a span of 10 years in December 2015. The market value of PSL in 2017 was up to US$300 million, according to Arif Habib.The PSL season runs between the months of February and March, with each team playing matches in double round robin format; the top four teams with the best record qualify for the playoffs and culminates in the championship game, the PSL Cup Final. The league is directed out of the Pakistan Cricket Board head office in Lahore. Due to security reasons, the first season was played entirely in the United Arab Emirates. The inaugural champions were Islamabad United. Peshawar Zalmi were the 2017 PSL Champions, having defeated Quetta Gladiators in Lahore on 5 March 2017. Islamabad United were the 2018 PSL champions, beating Peshawar Zalmi on the 25th of March 2018. The current champions are Quetta Gladiators, who won the title on 17 March 2019 in Karachi.Partition of India
The partition of India in 1947 eventually accompanied the creation of two independent dominions, India and Pakistan. The Dominion of India became the Republic of India in 1950, and in 1957 the Dominion of Pakistan became the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. In 1971, the People's Republic of Bangladesh came into being after the Bangladesh Liberation War. The partition involved the division of three provinces, Assam, Bengal and Punjab, based on district-wide Hindu or Muslim majorities. The boundary demarcating India and Pakistan came to be known as the Radcliffe Line. It also involved the division of the British Indian Army, the Royal Indian Navy, the Indian Civil Service, the railways, and the central treasury, between the two new dominions. The partition was set forth in the Indian Independence Act 1947 and resulted in the dissolution of the British Raj, as the British government there was called. The two self-governing countries of Pakistan and India legally came into existence at midnight on 14–15 August 1947.
The partition displaced over 14 million people along religious lines, creating overwhelming refugee crises in the newly constituted dominions; there was large-scale violence, with estimates of loss of life accompanying or preceding the partition disputed and varying between several hundred thousand and two million. The violent nature of the partition created an atmosphere of hostility and suspicion between India and Pakistan that plagues their relationship to the present.
The term partition of India does not cover the secession of Bangladesh from Pakistan in 1971, nor the earlier separations of Burma (now Myanmar) from the administration of British India. The term also does not cover the political integration of princely states into the two new dominions, nor the disputes of annexation or division arising in the princely states of Hyderabad, Junagadh, and Jammu and Kashmir, though violence along religious lines did break out in some princely states at the time of the partition. It does not cover the incorporation of the enclaves of French India into India during the period 1947–1954, nor the annexation of Goa and other districts of Portuguese India by India in 1961. Other contemporaneous political entities in the region in 1947, Sikkim, Bhutan, Nepal, and the Maldives were unaffected by the partition.Punjab, Pakistan
Punjab (Urdu, Punjabi: پنجاب, panj-āb, "five waters": listen ) is Pakistan's second largest province by area, after Balochistan, and it is the most populated province, with an estimated population of 110,012,442 as of 2017. Forming the bulk of the transnational Punjab region, it is bordered by the Pakistan provinces of Sindh, Balochistan, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the enclave of Islamabad, and Azad Kashmir. It also shares borders with the Indian states of Punjab, Rajasthan and Jammu and Kashmir. The provincial capital of Punjab is the city Lahore, a cultural, historical, economic and cosmopolitan centre of Pakistan where the country's cinema industry, and much of its fashion industry, are based.Punjab has been inhabited since ancient times. The Indus Valley Civilization, dating to 2600 BCE, was first discovered at Harappa. Punjab features heavily in the Hindu epic poem, the Mahabharata, and is home to Taxila, site of what is considered by many to be the oldest university in the world. In 326 BCE, Alexander the Great defeated King Porus at the Battle of the Hydaspes near Mong, Punjab. The Umayyad empire conquered Punjab in the 8th century CE. In the subsequent centuries, Punjab was invaded and conquered by the Ghaznavids, Ghurids, Delhi Sultanate, Mughals, Durranis and the Sikhs. Punjab reached the height of its splendour during the reign of the Mughal Empire, which for a time ruled from Lahore. During the 18th century, Nader Shah’s invasion of the Mughal Empire caused Mughal authority in the Punjab to fall apart and it thus fell into chaos. The Durranis under Ahmad Shah Durrani wrested control of Punjab only to lose it to the Sikhs after a successful rebellion which allowed Sikh armies to claim Lahore in 1759. The Sikh Empire was ruled by Ranjit Singh with his capital based in Lahore, until its defeat by the British. Punjab was central to the independence movements of both India and Pakistan, with Lahore being site of both the Declaration of Indian Independence, and the resolution calling for the establishment of Pakistan. The province was formed when the Punjab province of British India was divided along religious boundaries in 1947 by the Radcliffe Line after Partition.Punjab is Pakistan's most industrialised province with the industrial sector making up 24% of the province's gross domestic product. Punjab is known in Pakistan for its relative prosperity, and has the lowest rate of poverty amongst all Pakistani provinces. A clear divide is present between the northern and southern portions of the province; with poverty rates in prosperous northern Punjab amongst the lowest in Pakistan, while some in south Punjab are amongst the most impoverished. Punjab is also one of South Asia's most urbanized regions with approximately 40% of people living in urban areas. Its human development index rankings are high relative to the rest of Pakistan.
Punjab is known in Pakistan for its relatively liberal social attitudes. The province has been strongly influenced by Sufism, with numerous Sufi shrines spread across Punjab which attract millions of devotees annually. The founder of the Sikh faith, Guru Nanak, was born in the Punjab town of Nankana Sahib near Lahore. Punjab is also the site of the Katasraj Temple, which features prominently in Hindu mythology. Several UNESCO World Heritage Sites are located in Punjab, including the Shalimar Gardens, the Lahore Fort, the archeological excavations at Taxila, and the Rohtas Fort.