Balochistan-Sherani

Introduction

Sherani district is located between 69° 31′ 53″ to 70° 02′ 55″ east longitudes, and 31° 16′ 44″ to 32° 04′ 15″ north latitudes. The district is bounded by South Waziristan Agency on the north, Dera Ismail Khan (D I Khan) district on the east, Musakhel district on the southeast, Zhob district on the south and west, and Afghanistan on the southwest. The district is named after the Sherani tribe, the largest tribe inhabiting the region.

District at a Glance

Name of District Sherani District
Headquarters Stano Raaghah Town
Population[1] 153,116 persons
Area[2] 2,710 km2
Population Density[3] 51.9 persons/ km2
Growth Rate[4] 3.4%
Male Population[5] 55.5%
Female Population[6] 44.5%
Urban Population[7]
Rural Population[8] 100%
Tehsils/ Talukas 01 Tehsils:

1.    Sherani Tehsil

Main Villages Stano Raaghah town, Shin Bazai town, Astashai, Sher Ghali, Surlakai, Kili Khan Alam, Anzar Khezai, Aspasta Aghburga, Lehar Chopper Khail, Zara Killa, and Chajobi
Literacy Rate[9] 38.0%
Male Literacy Rate[10] 68.0%
Female Literacy Rate[11] 6.0 %
Major Economic Activity[12] Agriculture with its allied livestock breeding, fishing 30.3%

 

Community, Social & Personal Services 32.3%
Construction 13.3%
Wholesale, Retail, Hotel/Restaurant 9.6%
Electricity, Gas & Water 8.4%
Transport, Communication & Storage 4.5%
Others 1.6%
Main Crops[13] Wheat, barley, rapeseed & mustard, jowar, maize, moong, maash, cumin, tobacco, and fodder
Major Fruits[14] Apples, almonds, apricots, grapes, peach, pomegranate, plums, watermelon, musk melon, sarda, and garma
Major Vegetables[15] Onions, potatoes, tomatoes, okra, tinda, radish, spinach, turnip, cabbage, carrot, pumpkin, cauliflower, peas, brinjal, chilies, and garlic
Forest Area[16] – HA[17]
Black Topped Roads[18] 627.0 km
Shingle Roads[19] 916.0 km
Electricity Supplied by Quetta Electricity Supply Company (QESCO)
Telephone Exchanges[20] There are 855 broadband connections
Industrial Zones[21] No Industrial Estate and no Industry
Major Industry[22] None
Household Size[23] 7.7 persons per house
Houses with Piped Water[24] 18.1%
Houses with Electricity[25] 34.8%

Table 1.1 Sherani District at a Glance

[1] 2017 Census

[2] 1998 Census only Sherani Tehsil.

[3] 2017 Census

[4] 2017 Census

[5] 2017 Census

[6] 2017 Census

[7] 2017 Census

[8] 2017 Census

[9] Pakistan Social & Living Measurement Survey 2014-15 (PSLM); Latest available

[10] PSLM

[11] PSLM

[12] 1998 Census (Zhob district); 2017 Census data has not been released yet.

[13] Data for Zhob has been used here, since data for Sherani district is not available.

[14] Data for Zhob district.

[15] Data for Zhob district.

[16] Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19

[17] Land Utilization Statistics 6,277 HA under forests

[18] Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19; Zhob District data

[19] Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19: includes Zhob District as well

[20] Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19; other data included in Zhob district

[21] Sherani District Development Profile 2011, P&D GoB, with UNICEF

[22] Sherani District Development Profile 2011, P&D GoB, with UNICEF

[23] 1998 Census (Zhob district); 2017 Census data has not been released yet.

[24] 1998 Census (Zhob district); 2017 Census data has not been released yet.

[25] 1998 Census (Zhob district); 2017 Census data has not been released yet.

Brief HistoryGovernmental StructureAdministrative DivisionsHeritage Sites/ Tourist Attractions

Brief History of the District

Sherani was a subdivision of Zhob district till 2006 when it was separated and given the status of a district. The history of Sherani district is, hence, the same as that of Zhob district and has been included in the chapter on Zhob.

There are 2 main tribes inhabiting the district: the Sherani tribe and the Harifal tribe.

According to the Imperial Gazetteer of India:

The Sherani country is a tract of land on the western border of Dera Ismail Khan District [now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province]. It is bordered on the north by North Waziristan Agency, on the west by Balochistan and on the south by Ustrana Afghans.[1] The Suleiman Mountain Range running from north to south divides the country into two parts—“Largha” or lowlands and “Bargha” or the highlands. The country is poor with lowlands/largha being dependent upon agriculture whereas the Bar/Bargha Shiranis lead a pastoral life on the higher slopes of Takht-e-Suleiman[2] to which the flocks and herds of sections are sent in summers. (v. 22, p. 291)

The British, while fixing the borders of Zhob district, included the Bargha lands in Zhob district and the Largha lands in the tribal areas of Dera Ismail Khan district. Hence, the Sherani tribe (also spelled as Shiran or Sharani) tribe, resides in both areas.

The other major tribe inhabiting the district is the Harifal tribe. Both these tribes occupy the Suleiman Mountains and its subsidiary, the Shinghar Range. According to an academic hypothesis based on traditional/local knowledge (which is supported by the Zhob District Gazetteer), the Bargha lands were occupied by both the Wazirs/Bhittanis[3] and the Sheranis, about 400 years ago, who were in constant and protracted war with each other due to which the Bargha lands were notorious for being dangerous for non-local travelers and visitors for fear of attack.

Around the 17th century, the leader of the Sheranis met a Syed boy called Arif Ullah who had migrated from Pishin. The Sheranis sought his “supernatural” help and were victorious over the Wazirs/Bhittanis. Under Arif Ullah’s leadership, in fact, the Sheranis occupied the Bargha lands. Arif Ullah later married a Sherani woman, and became the progenitor of the Harifal tribe.[4] All Sheranis, out of courtesy, address every Harifal member with the title “Neeka” meaning grandfather, the highest level of reverence.

The Suleiman Mountains, locally known as Kase Ghar (abode of the Sherani and Harifal tribes) lie on the eastern boundary of Zhob district, and together with the other mountains, form a natural barrier between Afghanistan and the British Indian Empire. In order to keep the trade routes between Indian and Afghan territories open, it was essential for the British to secure passage by subjugating the tribes residing in the Zhob Valley and the mountains surrounding it.

According to the book, With the Zhob Field Force 1890 by Captain Crawford McFall, Major-General Sir George White, Commanding Officer of the British Army in India, set out for Zhob Valley from Loralai in 1889. This force entered Apozai (original name of Zhob) and made it their station. The only tribes who were hostile to the British were the Largha and Khiddarzai sections of the Sherani tribe. The Khiddarzai, in fact, refused to surrender 4 of their tribesmen to the British (who had accused these tribesmen of murder); Murtaza Khan (the leader of the Khiddarzai Sheranis) also refused to surrender.[5] A deputation of the leading “Maliks” (Cheiftains) of all other tribes had waited upon the Deputy Commissioner of Dera Ismail Khan at Sheikh Budin[6] in June 1989, but had been dismissed because of their being unable to guarantee the surrender of the “criminals”. In 1890, an expedition with Sir Robert Sandeman as Chief Political Officer and Major-General Sir George White as Commander was arranged to deal with the hostile tribes and the Zhob Field Force was formed. In addition to this, a detachment of the Punjab Frontier Force was also placed at the disposal of Sir George White to operate against the Sheranis from the direction of the Punjab and the Derajat to the east. The Khiddarzais were, thus, attacked from both directions: the Punjab and Balochistan.

Before the actual attack, a formal ultimatum was dispatched to Murtaza Khan and the other Khiddarzai chiefs, calling on them to surrender. The chiefs asked for a month to consider the matter. This was not acceptable to the British, and Sir Robert Sandeman instructed General White to attack the tribesmen.

The general plan was to send one column of the British army by Walla Nullah, over the Muramuzh Range, to Namur Kalan (the headquarters of the Khiddarzais), and the other column by way of the Chuhar Khel Dhana to Mogul Kot, while at the same time, a third force was to proceed to, and occupy, Drazand, the largest village of the Largha Sheranis.

The start from Apozai took place on October 31. By November 13, all the principal points in Sherani were occupied. Later, a grand inquest was held at Karama, to inquire into the conduct of the tribe; fines were imposed, and the proceedings were terminated by a darbar, at which the submission of the tribe was formally received by the British.

Some of the leaders of the Sherani tribe who fought against the British invasion were:

  • Masho Khan Sherani: He harnessed the martial spirit of his tribe by forming a semi-military organization and his death made him a folk hero. He was killed during fighting against the British army in the Zhob district area called Silyazi
  • Murtaza Khan Sherani, the chieftain of the Khiddarzai subtribe: His family is settled in Largha (lowland) of Sherani country. Prominent among his descendants is Malik Aslam Khan, settled in Dera Ismail Khan
  • Sindhai Sherani: He is said to have fought along with Masho Khan. He was a Shamozai Hassankhail Sherani
  • Berkhurdar: He was the commander of a fort on the west side of Spasta Valley as well as the village behind it. The fort had corner towers, and is known as Berkhurdar’s Fort. He is survived by a huge family commonly known as Ashak Kahool, which still lives in the same area
  • Rani Gul: He is known for opening fire upon a British reconnoitering party in January 1888; he had a band of Khiddarzai under him
  • Adam Khan Malezai Harifal: He was a close confidant of Masho Khan, and was arrested after Khan’s death, languishing in jail for an unspecified length of time. He was the resident of Tarai. He is survived by a grandson named Khanan in village Tarai
  • Fazal Dirzai Harifal: He was a resident of Pehlan village. The British Government had offered a reward for his capture, but could neither arrest nor kill him. He ultimately migrated to Afghanistan
  • Shikari Choharkhail, Lundak Dirzai Sherani, and Alamgul Hassankhail were other Sheranis known for their resistance to the British invasion. Lundak was a resident of Tarjana, who was later arrested and jailed

After annexation by the British, the Sherani’s homeland was made a part of the Sherani Agency and Zhob district; Captain MacIver was appointed the first Political Agent to Zhob and was the Political Agent of Sherani Agency also. The area became a part of Pakistan in 1947.

[1] Ustrana is a tribe that inhabits the hilly areas opposite the southernmost portion of Dera Ghazi Khan district and also parts of FR Dera Ismail Khan. They are descended from a Syed, who settled among the Sheranis, and married a Sherani woman. They are thus an intimate connection of the Sheranis

[2] Takht-i-Suleiman is a peak of Suleiman Mountains located in Drazinda, FR Dera Ismail Khan (FATA)

[3] Bhittanis is also spelled as Baitanis

[4] Wikipedia the free encyclopedia, Harifal tribe

[5] With the Zhob Field Force 1890 p. 122

[6] Sheikh Budin is a mountain range in Dera Ismail Khan district

Governmental Structure

At the Federal level, Sherani district is allocated a set number of representatives in both the National Assembly and the Provincial Assembly:

  • Number of seats in the National Assembly[1] 1
  • Number of seats in the Provincial Assembly[2] 1

Under the Local Government Act 2010, Amended in 2011, Sherani district has 1 District Council with 13 Union Councils. It has 1 Municipal Committee as follows:

  • Sherani

Each Union Council is represented by 1 member in the District Council. In addition, there is special representation of women (33%), and of workers and peasants (5% each).

[1] This seat is shared by Zhob and Kila Saifullah districts

[2] This seat is shared by Zhob district

Administrative Divisions

Sherani district covers an area of 2,710 km² and is subdivided into 1 Tehsil as follows:

Sherani Tehsil 07 Union Councils

Table 1.2 Sherani Administrative Divisions

Historical/Heritage Sites and Tourism/Picnic Spots

Da Kase Ghar or the Takht-i-Suleiman is the only important[1] archeological site in the district. Locals believe that Qais Abdul Rasheed (575-661 AD), the progenitor of all Pashtoon tribes, was born, and is buried, here. This site, however, is not protected at present. The local population refers to this area as Da Kase Ghar (the mountain of Qais). His shrine, commonly called Shrine of Takht-i-Suleiman, is situated on a ledge below the crest on the southernmost bluff of Kase Ghar Mountain.

The Takht-e-Suleiman Area, with its Shrine and the Lake, has been earmarked for inclusion in the UNESCO National Heritage List.

In addition to the above, there are a number of mausoleums/mshrines which have historical importance and need to be protected under the Government of Pakistan laws. These are:

  • Shrine of Hazrat Babakar Nika Harifal on Shinghar Mountains in Ghwanzah
  • Shrine of Mulla Zaman Neeka,[2] Pashtoon, in Neekan Graveyard
  • Shrine of MullahUmer Neeka Harifal at Killi
  • Shrines of Abdul Haq and Mir Neeka at Karmanzai

[1] Sherani District Debelopment Plan 2011 by GoB and UNICEF

[2] Neeka is a title in Pashto that conveys more respect than father, akin to grandfather

Topography

Sherani district is mountainous in characteristics and comprises a mix of hills, valleys, and water channels. The terrain elevation varies from 678 to 3,356 m above mean sea level.

In the northeast of Balochistan plateau, Zhob and Sherani basin forms a lobe, surrounded on all side by mountains. The Sherani district is located within the Suleiman Mountain Range and the Shinghar Mountains; the slopes of the Suleiman Mountains are inhabited by the Sherani tribe whereas the Harifal tribe inhabits the slopes of Shinghar Mountains.

The Suleiman Mountains and Shinghar Mountains are separated by the valley of Lahar. The main peak of Shinghar is 2,826 m above sea level and the highest peak of Suleiman Mountains, called Takht-e-Suleiman or Solomon’s Throne (in Balochistan, it is called Da Kase Ghar or the mountain of Qais) is 3,487 m high. Both sister peaks (Shinghar and Da Kase Ghar) form the highest points of the Suleiman Range.

The Takht-e-Suleiman is a high tableland, bounded on its eastern and western edges by high, rugged, and steep parallel ridges. The western ridge culminates on the north in the peak of Da Kase Ghar (3,487 m) also spelled as Kaisagarh, and the eastern ridge ends in the block or detached headland of the Takht-e-Suleiman (3,374 m).

At each end, the Takht-e Suleiman tableland is rent by gorges which deepen, amidst precipices, to the channel of the Draband or Gat on the north, and the Dhana on the south.

Torghar is the continuation of the southern hills of the Suleiman Range, the highest peak of which is Charkundai, 2,291 m above sea level. Dhana Sir, the top of Dhana (1,189 m) is on a rough stony plateau.

Between Sherani Country and the Zhob district lie several small mountain ridges, across which the 3 chief passes are the Zarakni or Sheikh Haidar, the Draband, and the Chandwan. The Dhana Pass links the Sherani district with Dera Ismail Khan district. The actual length of the pass is 6.4 km. The pass/gorge gradually narrows from 18 m to a meter.  The British constructed a road through this gorge, connecting Zhob/Sherani Country with Dera Ismail Khan.

Figure 1.4 Shinghar Mountains

Figure 1.5 Suleiman Mountains

Figure 1.6 A View of Shinghar Mountains

Rivers, Streams, and Lakes

The main springs of the district include the Pezai spring on the western slopes of the Suleiman Mountain Range, the Cheena spring, Salaizai Cheena, and Samazai Cheena. There are a number of intermittent and perennial streams that flow down from the mountains; an important perennial stream is the Sherani Lahar. Some of the intermittent streams include Band Algad, Tawa Khwazah, Pasta Khwara, Tora Khwara, Tangai Sheela, and Lakarai.

Forests

The district contains Natural Dry Temperate Forests consisting of chilghoza pine and Sub Tropical Broad Leaved Evergreen Scrub[1] Forests of olive and phulai, which occupy large areas in the district. The district has a reasonable area under forest, and a statistically negligible area has been conserved as State Forest. There are 5 Notified Forests in the district; these are Kapip, Shahwan Khawe, Shinghar, Khawaza, and Merhail, with a total forest area of 6,277 HA[2]. The remaining forest area is community-owned and these forests are not under any scientific management regime.

In the Dry Temperate Forests of chilghoza pine, the main species are chilghoza (Pinus gerardiana), blue pine (Pinus wallichiana), olive (Olea ferrugenea), shina or Bombay mastix (Pistacia khinjuk), uzhgai or wild pistachios (Pistachia cabulica), gurgura or ganger (Reptonia buxifolia), shang/wild ash (Fraxinus xanthoxyloides), and wild almond (Prunus eburnean). In the Sub Tropical Broad Leaved Evergreen Scrub Forests, the main tree species are: natural olives (Olea ferrugenea), and phulai (Acacia modesta). Besides these tree species, a number of associated shrubs and herbs are also present in these forests, which may include barara or milk broom (Periploca aphylla), anang or sour cherry (Prunus creasus), arghuch or viper’s grass (Scorzonera mollis), datura or devil’s trumpet (Datura fastuosa), gandarae or oleander (Narium odorum), gangu (Othonnopsis intermedia), ghuzera or dwarf sophora (Sophora grifithii), injaora or round headed leek/garlic (Allium sphaerocephalum), khamazurgae or Indian rennet (Withania cougulans), khatol or African mustard (Malcolmia africana), malaghunae or olive daphne (Daphne oleoides), mazri or dwarf palm (Nannorrhops ritchiana), and sanatha (Dodonea viscose; Sanatha is usually found on degraded sites). The ground cover is constituted mainly by feather grass (Stipa pennata), fountain grass (Pennisetum orientalis), Aucher’s grass (Chrysopogon aucheri), barau or Johnson’s grass (Sorghum halepense), barwaza or spear grass (Heteropogon contortus), bushkae or hoary cress (Sepidium draba), and Sargarae or lemongrass (Cymbopogon sp.).

Soils

In the absence of any other data, details for soils of the district have been taken to be the same as those for Zhob district. The soils of the Zhob Valley are loamy, deep, and strongly calcareous, whereas the mountains have shallow soil.

Figure 1.7 IUCN GIS Map Sherani District

Climate

In the absence of any other data, the climate of the district is taken to be the same as that of Zhob district, which is generally hot in the summer and cold in the winter. Summer is from May to September, and June is the hottest month, with mean maximum and minimum temperatures being 37 °C and 23 °C respectively. January is the coldest month, with mean maximum and minimum temperatures ranging between 13 °C and ‑1 °C. Dust storms occur in summer from July to September, some of which are accompanied by thunder storms. In winters, the wind blows from the west and is very cold. The winds from the southwest and the east are also common, and these often bring rain. The winds from the north occasionally blow in September to April, and bring drought, damaging standing crops.

Rainfall is scanty, and varies with the altitude. Most of the rainfall is received during the winter months. Mean annual rainfall of the district is 285 mm.

Seismic Activity

The district belongs to Zone 3 of the Seismic Zone Map of Pakistan, which means moderate to severe damage due to earthquakes.

[1] Sherani District Development Profile 2011 P&D Department GoB with UNICEF

[2] Not reported in the Forestry Statistics.

Population

The following table shows the population of the district according to 2017 Census:

District/Tehsil Area

km2

Population Male% Female% Urban % Growth Rate %
Sherani District 2,710 153,116 55.5 44.5 3.36
Sherani Tehsil 2,710 153,116 55.5 44.5 3.36

Table 1.3 Sherani Population Statistics

Religions[1]

Muslims 99.7%
Christians Negligible %
Hindus Negligible %
Ahmadis 0.2%
Scheduled Castes Negligible %
Others Negligible %

Table 1.4 Sherani Religions

Languages[2]

Urdu 0.2%
Punjabi Negligible %
Sindhi Negligible %
Pushto 99.7%
Balochi Negligible %
Seraiki Negligible %
Others[3] Negligible %

Table 1.5 Sherani Languages

[1] 1998 Census (Sherani tehsil); 2017 Census data has not been released yet.

[2] 1998 Census (Sherani tehsil)); 2017 Census data has not been released yet.

[3] Includes Brahui etc.

Economic ActivityEconomic Infrastructure

Economic Activity

The main economic occupations of Sherani have been taken to be the same as Zhob district, which are as follows:

  • Agriculture with its allied livestock breeding, fishing (30.3%)
  • Community, Social & Personal Services (32.3%)
  • Construction (13.3%)
  • Wholesale, Retail, Hotel/Restaurant (9.6%)
  • Electricity, Gas & Water (8.4%)
  • Transport, Communication & Storage (4.5%)
  • Others (1.6%)

Land Use

The following table shows the main land use statistics of Sherani district according to Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19:

Total Area 271,000 HA Reported Area 12,751 HA
Total Cultivated Area 6,474 HA Net Sown 1,902 HA
Current Fallow 4,572 HA Total Uncultivated Area 6,277 HA
Culturable Waste – HA Forest Area 6,277 HA

Table 1.6 Sherani Land Use Statistics

Agriculture

Like Zhob district, Sherani is included in the Western Dry Mountain Agro-Ecological Zone of Pakistan; farming is mostly barani or rain fed/ torrent fed. The crops of the district are wheat, barley, rapeseed & mustard, jowar, maize, moong, maash, cumin, tobacco, and fodder.

The fruits grown in the district are apples, almonds, apricots, grapes, peach, pomegranate, plums, watermelon, musk melon, sarda, and garma.

The vegetable produce of the district includes onions, potatoes, tomatoes, okra, tinda, radish, spinach, turnip, cabbage, carrot, pumpkin, cauliflower, peas, brinjal, chilies, and garlic.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Figure 1.8 Chilghoza Foliage

Livestock Breeding

Livestock breeding is a very important sector of the economy. It is the main source of income for nomadic families. The following table shows the position of the Livestock Population for Zhob district according to the 2006 Census of Livestock (qtd. in Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19) and includes data for Sherani district:

Cattle 178,658 Heads Buffaloes 5,524 Heads Sheep 1,174,735 Heads
Goats 875,922 Heads Camels 1,010 Heads Horses 370 Heads
Mules 168 Heads Asses 18,351 Heads

Table 1.7 Sherani Livestock Statistics

The livestock breeds of the region are kohi (camel); Koh-i-Suleiman or lohani (cattle); shinghari and sperki or pidie (donkey); Balochi (horse); kakari, Musakhaili, kajjale and bibrik (sheep); and Koh-i-Suleimani (goat).

Poultry

According to the Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19, there are 303,912 poultry birds in Zhob district (projected population); this includes data for Sherani district also.

Fishing

Commercial Fisheries are not present in the district and people do not fish regularly, but fish like Rohu, Morki, Thella and Mali are found in cold and mildly cold areas of Zhob, and Trout has high fishing potential. After the construction of Murghabal Dam is completed, the fisheries sector can be developed in the region.

Bee Keeping

Bee keeping is not an economically significant activity in the district. Local people collect honey from wastelands and forest areas for their own use.

Irrigation

Sherani district belongs to the Western Dry Mountains Agro-Ecological Zone of Pakistan, which is the same as Zhob district. The district mostly comprises of barren mountains with steep slopes and is mostly barani and rainfed. The following table shows the mode of irrigation and area being irrigated by the mode (Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19):

Total Irrigated Area 1,839 HA Government Canals – HA
Private Canals – HA Wells – HA
Tube wells 613 HA Karez/Spring/Others 1,226 HA

Table 1.9 Sherani Irrigation Statistics

Irrigation canals off-taking from Sabakzai Dam on Sawar Rud (a tributary of River Zhob) and the river itself are the main canals irrigating the district.

Murghabal Delay Action Dam is being built in the district.

Minerals and Mining

There are no minerals in the district.[1]

Industry

There are no industrial units in the district.[2]

Handicrafts

The main handicrafts of the district are embroidery on clothes, and sandal and shoe making, as well as embroidery of leather. This embroidery is mostly done by women, and is taken to be the same as data from Zhob district.

[1] Sherani District Development Plan 2011, by GoB and UNICEF

[2] Sherani District Development Plan 2011, by GoB and UNICEF

 

Economic Infrastructure

Roads are the most important means of transport in the region, and form the backbone of the economy. The district is not linked through rail or air.

Roads

According to the Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19 the road statistics[1] of the district are as follows:

Total Roads 1,544.0 km
High Type Roads/black topped 627.0 km
Low Type Roads/Shingle 916.0 km

Table 1.8 Sherani Road Statistics

Figure 1.10 Zhob-D I Khan Road

Rail and Airways

There is no rail link to the district. The nearest railway station is at Zhob; Zhob also has a small airport, called Zhob Airport, which is the airport closest to Sherani district.

Radio and Television

There is no radio station or TV booster in the district, but radio can be accessed fairly easily. Radio is a major source of entertainment especially in the rural areas.

Telecommunications

The district is connected to other parts of the country through telephone and telegraph. There are no telephone exchanges,[2] but there are 802 broadband connections in the district. Cellular phone companies also provide their services in the district.

Post Offices/ Courier Services

There is 1 post office in the entire district (Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19). Courier companies provide services in the district as well.

Banking/Financial Institutions

Data is not available.

Electricity and Gas

Quetta Electric Supply Company (QESCO) looks after the supply and transmission of electricity to the district.

Education

Following table gives the number of primary, middle secondary, mosque schools in the district as per Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19:

Institution Boys/Girls Institution Boys/Girls
Primary Schools 158/18 Middle Schools 10/02
High Schools 05/01 Community Schools 08
Higher Secondary 01/01 Degree Colleges -/-
Universities Mosque Schools[3] *
Vocational Training Schools Private Schools

Table 1.10 Sherani Educational Institutes

Health

The following table shows the Government Health Care Institutions in Sherani district as per Balochistan Development Statistics 2018-19:

Institution No./beds Institution No./beds
Teaching Hospitals Hospitals -/-
Rural health Centers 02/32 Basic Health Units 07/-
Dispensaries 07/- Mother Child Health Centers 01/-
TB/Leprosy clinics etc Private Hospitals
Private dispensaries

Table 1.11 Sherani Health Institutes

Policing

The larger part of Bolan district is bifurcated into an “A” and “B” areas. The “A” area, comprising towns and highways, has a police force. “B” area does not have a police force. All major law and order matters in the “B” area are dealt with by levies.

Levy is a conventional force for maintaining law and order, and were installed during British rule. Levy members are recruited along tribal or clan lines. The levies fall under the direct command of the Deputy Commissioner (DC), with powers delegated to the assistant commissioners, and tehsildars. Every district in Balochistan has its own levies, named after the district. Recently, at the initiation of the DC administration, a new levy force has been recruited on district level, known as the Task Force. This Task Force is better trained and equipped with advanced weapons.

The policing of Sherani district is looked after by the Regional Police Officer (RPO) Loralai. This RPO is assisted by 1 SubDivisional Police Officer (SDPO) stationed at Sherani. In all, there are 2 police stations[4] in the district.

Figure 1.11 A Check Post on Shinghar Mountains

[1] Includes data for Zhob District also

[2]Balochistan Development Statistics, 2018-19

[3] included in primary schools

[4] Table no. 19.7 (a) Number of Police Stations by Division/District; by Federal Bureau of Statistics.

Environment and Biodiversity

The district is free from air pollution, as there is very little heavy traffic on roads and no industry. Potable water is also a scarcity.

Flora and Fauna

Flora

There are 3 vegetation zones[1] in the district, as follows:

  • Hills: The region has chilgoza pine (Pinus gerardiana) with associates like blue pine (Pinus wallichiana), olive (Olea ferrugenea), shina or wild pistachios (Pistacia khinjuk), uzhgai or wild pistachios (Pistachia cabulica), gurgura or ganger (Reptonia buxifolia), shang/wild ash (Fraxinus xanthoxyloides), and wild almond (Prunus eburnean)
  • Foothills: The foothills host olive (Olea ferrugenea), phulai (Acacia modesta), sanatha (Dodonea viscosa), kandiari (Gymnosporia spinosa), ber (Zizyphus nummularia), and mazri or dwarf palm (Nannorrhops ritchiana)
  • Plains and Streambeds: These are commonly found in the entire district where Tamarix sp. and Saccharam sp. are common.

Fauna

Mammals found in the district include fox, Asiatic jackal, cape hare, stone marten, porcupines, Afghan hedgehog, Suleiman markhor, and urial.

Avifauna includes chakor, see-see partridge, magpie, houbara bustard, a number of sparrows, finches, buntings, seasonal/ migratory waterfowls, hawks, and sand grouse. The area also provides a corridor to migratory bird species like the common crane and Demoiselle crane.

Reptiles include Afghan tortoise, brown cobra, saw-scale viper, Levantine viper, and goh.

Protected Areas and Wildlife

There are no Protected Wildlife Areas in the district. There are no wetlands of national or international importance located in the district either. The Sherani Lahar (semi-perennial river), throughout its length, is an important wetland for resident and winter visiting species. The major birds found in the region are cranes, pelicans, king fishers, and osprey.

[1] Sherani District Development Plan 2011, by GoB and UNICEF