Punjab-Muzaffargarh

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Introduction

District Muzaffargarh is part of the Sindh Sagar Doab, which is a wedge shaped tract between the River Indus and the Panjnad.[1] Muzaffargarh occupies this doab’s extreme southern apex. The district is located between 28° 57′ to 30° 46′ north latitudes and 70° 30′ to 71° 47′ east longitudes. The district is bounded on the north by district Layyah, and on the south by Bahawalpur and Rahim Yar Khan districts across the River Chenab. Multan and Khanewal districts are on the eastern side of Muzaffargarh, with River Chenab forming the boundary. District Jhang touches Muzaffargarh on the northeast, and Dera Ghazi Khan and Rajanpur districts lie on the western side, across the River Indus.

District at a Glance

Name of District Muzaffargarh District
District Headquarter Muzaffargarh City
Population[2] 4,322,009 persons
Area[3] 8,249 km2
Population Density[4] 564.1 persons/ km2
Population Growth Rate[5] 2.6%
Male Population[6] 51.3%
Female Population[7] 48.7%
Urban Population[8] 16.1%
Tehsils 04 Tehsils:

1.    Muzaffargarh Tehsil

2.    Alipur Tehsil

3.    Kot Addu Tehsil

4.    Jatoi Tehsil

Main Towns Muzaffargarh, Kot Addu, Alipur, Khangarh, Rohillanwali, Mahra Khas, Shahr Sultan, Rangpur, Mehmood Kot, Sinawan, Thatta Gurmani, Daira Din Panah, Chowk Sarwar Shaheed, Shah Jamal, Mahrpur, Baseera, Wasandaywali, Jalwala Pir Amir, Binda Ishaq, Ehsan Pur, Bakaini, Seet Pur Muradabad, Ghazi Ghat, Karam Dad Quresh, Basti Malik Wala, and Basti Daood Shah Wala (Shahr Sultan)
Literacy Rate[9] 45%
Male Literacy Rate[10] 59%
Female Literacy Rate[11] 31%
Major Economic Activity[12] Agriculture with its Allied Livestock Breeding & Fishing 49.8%

 

Construction 24.6%
Community and Personal Services 13.3%
Whole Sale/Retail, Hotel/Restaurant 7.1%
Manufacture 3.2%
Transport, Storage and Communication 1.8%
Others 0.2%
Main Crops Sugarcane, wheat cotton, rice, jowar, bajra, moong, maash, masoor, groundnut, maize, gram, guarseed, rapeseed & mustard, barley, groundnut, sesanum, sugar beet, linseed, sunflower, sunn hemp, and castor seed
Major Fruits Mango, dates, citrus, pomegranate, jaamun, guava, phalsa, banana, ber, and mulberry
Major Vegetables Onion, carrot, cauliflower, peas, bottle gourd, brinjal, okra, turnip, tomatoes, potatoes, garlic, chilies, coriander, and mint
Forests (area)[13] 41,000[14] HA
Total Black Topped Roads[15] 2,243.0 km
National Highways[16] 30.0 km
Motorways[17] – km
Provincial Roads[18] 2,152.8 km
Sugar Cess Roads[19] 60.2 km
No. of Grid Stations[20] 11 grid stations, ranging in capacity from 66 KV to 132 KV
No. of Tel. Exchanges[21] 26 telephone exchanges, ranging in capacity from 300 lines to 7,000 lines
Industrial Zones[22] No industrial estate but 162 small, medium, and large enterprises
Major Industry[23] Cotton Ginning & Pressing 81 Units
Textile 20 Units
Rice mills 10 Units
Agricultural Implements 18 Units
Flour Mills 11 Units
Power Generation 5 Units
Packaging 1 Unit
Poly Propylene bags 2 Units
Cold Storage 2 Units
Jute Textile 2 Units
Refinery 1 Unit
Soaps & Detergents 3 Units
Sugar 3 Units
Sulphuric Acid 1 Unit
Vegetable Ghee/oil 1 Unit
Household Size[24] 7.3 persons per house
Houses with Piped Water Inside[25] 6.0%
Houses with Electricity[26] 51.7%

Table 1.1 Muzaffargarh District at a Glance

[1] Panjnad is the confluence of all five rivers of Punjab

[2] 2017 Census

[3] 1998 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; 2017 Census Data has not been made public yet.

[13] Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19

[14] Land Utilization Statistics reports 35,000 HA under Forests.

[15] Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19

[16] Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19

[17] Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19

[18] Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19

[19] Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19

[20] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study 2012 Muzaffargarh District; Latest Available.

[21] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study 2012 Muzaffargarh District; Latest Available.

[22] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study 2012 Muzaffargarh District; Latest Available.

[23] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study 2012 Muzaffargarh District; Latest Available.

[24] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data has not been made public yet.

[25] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data has not been made public yet.

[26] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data has not been made public yet.

Brief HistoryGovernmental StructureAdministrative DivisionsProtected Areas/ Tourist Attractions

Brief History of the District 

Muzaffargarh district has mostly been a part of Multan Division/ Province and hence, its earlier history is the same as that recounted in the chapter on Multan. According to the Imperial Gazetteer of India:

Muzaffargarh hardly possesses any distinct annals of its own, having always formed part of Multan Province, whose fortunes it has invariably followed. In ancient times this tract was probably ruled by the Hindu Dynasty of Rais, to which succeeded the Brahmin line of Chach. The Arabs made their first appearance in 664 AD and in 712 AD it was overrun by Muhammad bin Qasim. For the next three centuries the country was in the military occupation of the Muhammadans, but it is unlikely that any considerable conversion of its inhabitants or settlements of Muhammadan invaders took place until the Ghaznavid supremacy. Muzaffargarh probably fell under the influence of Sumra Dynasty, which arose in Sindh about 1053 AD and of their successors the Sammas[1] and under their rule an immigration of Rajput tribe from Hindustan is said to have taken place. During the rule of Langah Dynasty in Multan, an independent kingdom of Sitpur[2] was established in the south of the district and from that time on to the end of the eighteenth century it was held by four separate governments or principalities, which were during the Mughal period included in Akbar’s Sarkar of Multan. (v. 18, p. 76)

The four independent governments of the kingdom of Sitpur mentioned in the Gazetteer were Sitpur, Dera Ghazi Khan, Multan, and the Thal Nawabs. The establishment of an independent government at Sitpur became the starting point of a reliable history of Muzaffargarh district.

Sitpur itself was founded by the Nahar family in what is now Alipur tehsil. It was founded through a grant made by Bahlol Lodhi[3] in 1450. It is known that the Makhdums held the kingdom of Sitpur till it was annexed by Nawab Bahawal Khan II of Bahawalpur in 1790.

The second government of Sitpur (of the four governments identified above) was by the rulers of Dera Ghazi Khan: the Miranis, Gujjars, Kalhoras and other Governors appointed by the Durrani Kings of Kabul, and then finally by Bahawal Khan II of Bahawalpur. It consisted of the West-Central part of Muzaffargarh district (as it exists now) which was next to Dera Ghazi Khan.

The third government was by the Governors of Multan, and consisted of the East-Central part of the district lying on the west bank of Chenab opposite Multan, beginning from the time of the Langah family (1529) to the Sadozai reign (1752-1818), when it was taken over by the Sikhs in 1818. When the Durrani Empire superseded that of Delhi in northwestern India in 1749, the areas belonging to Muzaffargarh transferred to the new power with the rest of the province.

The fourth government ruled the northern part of the district including Thal (part of Thal Desert) and was held by the Governors of Mankera locally known as the Nawabs of Thal. Mankera is now in Bhakkar district.

The town of Muzaffargarh was founded in 1794 by the Pathan Governor of Multan, Nawab Muzaffar Khan. Muzaffargarh means “Fort of Muzaffar” and was named as such because the old town lies inside the walls of a fort built by Nawab Muzaffar Khan of Multan. In 1792, a subordinate of Muzaffar Khan was appointed ruler of the northern part of the district with the title of Nawab of Mankera after he had defeated the Kalhora chief in a battle. These Nawabs of Mankera continued to rule the Thal area (part of which is now Muzaffargarh district) till Punjab was annexed by the British in 1849.

Ranjit Singh conquered Multan, Muzaffargarh, and Khangarh cities in 1818 AD, Dera Ghazi Khan in 1819, and Mankera in 1821 AD, and thus, the northern part of the district came under Sikh rule. It was then administered partly from Mankera and partly from Multan by Dewan Sawan Mal. The southern part still remained under the rule of the Nawabs of Bahawalpur. In 1830 the southern part was also taken over by the Sikhs and the whole district came under the rule of Dewan Sawan Mal and his son Mulraj who succeeded him in 1844. The Sikhs remained the rulers of the district till 1849 when all of Punjab was annexed by the British.

Originally, in 1849, the British made Khangarh the headquarters of the district, and named the district Khangarh district, but in 1859, Khangarh was abandoned in favor of Muzaffargarh. Subsequent transfers of land to and from Layyah and Jhang brought the district into its present shape.

The district became part of Pakistan in 1947 and was divided into 4 tehsils.

Governmental Structure

At the Federal level, Muzaffargarh district is allocated a set number of representativ es in both the National Assembly and the Provincial Assembly:

  • Number of seats in the National Assembly 5
  • Number of seats in the Provincial Assembly 11

Under the Local Government and Community Development Muzaffargarh District has 1 District Council and 9 Municipal Committees as follows:

  • Muzaffargarh
  • Kot Addu
  • Alipur
  • Jatoi
  • Chowk Sarwar Shaheed
  • Shehr Sultan
  • Daira Din Panah
  • Khangarh
  • Sinawan

Administrative Divisions 

Muzaffargarh district covers an area of 8,249 km² and is subdivided into 4 tehsils as follows:

Alipur Tehsil 30 Union Councils
Jatoi Tehsil 16 Union Councils
Kot Addu Tehsil 28 Union Councils
Muzaffargarh Tehsil 35 Union Councils

Table 1.2 Muzaffargarh Administrative Divisions

[1] The Sammas were a Rajput tribe whose descendants can be traced to Alipur Tehsil (District Gazetteer Muzaffargarh 1930); Sammas bore the title of “Jam”

[2] Sitpur is still part of Muzaffargarh in Alipur tehsil.

[3] Imperial Gazetter of India vol. 18 p. 76

Heritage/ Historical Buildings and Tourist Attractions 

Following are the heritage/ historical buildings of the district:

  • Tomb of Sheikh Sadan Shaheed, Village Sadan (protected): This is a brick tomb, square in plan, and erected on a high platform, which is about 2 m above the surrounding ground levels
  • Tomb of Tahar Khan Nahar (or Tahir Khan Nahar) and nearby mosque in Sitpur (protected)
  • Shrine of Hazrat Sakhi Abdul Wahab Bukhari, Dera Din Panah (protected). The shrine is also known as Deen Panah Bukhari
  • Shrine of Hazrat Sheikh Ludho, Muzaffargarh (protected)
  • Shrine of Hazrat Sultan Manjhan, at Basti Sultan Manjhan, Muzaffargarh (protected)
  • Shrine of Hazrat Bahu Sher, Muzaffargarh (protected)
  • Shrine of Hazrat Muhammad Anwar, Kunnal Shareef, Muzaffargarh, (protected)
  • Fort of Mahmood Kot, Muzaffargarh (protected)

Non-protected, but important, historical sites include

  • Shrine of Hazrat Alam Shah Bukhari, Tehsil Jatoi
  • Victoria Club, Muzaffargarh. It is now called Yadgar Club
  • Masjid Sakina-tus Sughra, Tehsil Jatoi
  • Shah Garh Fort, Muzaffargarh. This is a mud fort
  • Shrine of Hazrat Noor Shah Talai, Kot Addu
  • Shrine of Hazrat Baba Baga Sher, Muzaffargarh
  • Shrine of Hazrat Pir Jahanian, Muzaffargarh
  • Shrine of Hazrat Baba Kashmiri, Muzaffargarh
  • Fayyaz Park, Muzaffargarh City. This park is spread over a large area, and is a famous visiting place of Muzaffargarh city. It has its own mosque, broad roads, and a big playground for children

The Taunsa Barrage Reservoir and banks of River Chenab provide excellent picnic spots

Figure 1.5 Tomb of Sheikh Sadan Shaheed

Figure 1.6 Masjid Sakina-tus Sughra

Figure 1.8 Taunsa Barrage

Topography

Muzaffargarh district occupies the southern apex of the Sindh Sagar Doab[1] area which is a wedge shaped tract between the Indus and the Panjnad or united waters of all five rivers of Punjab. The district stretches northward from the confluence of the rivers in a narrow wedge of land which gradually widens; it is, thus, shaped like almost a regular triangle.

The northern half of the district comprises of the valley of the Indus on the west and that of Chenab on the east. The Thal Desert extends for a considerable distance from the center.

Topographically, the district is divided into 2 parts:

  • Riverine belts, which receive inundation from the rivers
  • Sandy terrains of the Thal Desert

The River Indus and River Chenab flow on its western and eastern sides respectively and form the riverine belt of the district. This riverine part of the district may be further subdivided into 3 parts: the first is the comparatively narrow belt along both the rivers, where the summer floods are so high that no summer (kharif) crops can be sown or winter (rabi) crops matured without irrigation. The second part of the riverine belt is the area where floods are less violent and a little kharif can be grown in the highest lands. The third is the canal irrigated area. The more notable of these canals are the Muzaffargarh canal system from the Taunsa Barrage on the Indus and Rangpur canals from Trimmu Barrage on the Chenab. These canal irrigated lands are protected from river floods by embankments, most important of which are the Sanwan embankment, bund (embankment) near Langr Sarai, bund on the east of Muzaffargarh town, and a bund on the east of Khangarh and Khanwah.

The northern portion of the district (Kot Addu tehsil) comprises a part of the old Thal Desert, the width of which lessens from north to south as the Chenab and Indus approach each other. Almost half of the Thal area has been brought under cultivation through the construction of the Thal Canal.

Figure 1.3 Thal Desert

Rivers, Streams, and Lakes

There are 2 major rivers flowing along the borders of the district: the River Indus flows along the west of the district and River Chenab along its east. There are other smaller intermittent streams like Kala Rawana, Lunda, Vehari Nullah, Kot Wah, and Nala Sardar.

The Rangla Wetland Complex[2] in Muzaffargarh district consists of a number of smaller lakes like Rangla Lake, Jarrwali Lake, Bhando, Drowle Dhand, Bheriwala Lake, Kuttaywali Lake, Hansewala Lake, Dori Headworks, Bhudena, Mubarikwala, Drawaewala, Bhangan, and Naiwala. Another wetland complex of importance is the Ghazi Ghat Wetland created with the construction of a causeway and bridge over River Indus near Muzaffargarh.

Figure 1.4 Flood Map of Muzaffargah District[3]

Forests

The following table shows the total forest area under various departments in Muzaffargarh district as per Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19:

Total Forest Area 101,438 A Under Provincial Govt. 5,091 A
District Govt. – A Reserved Forests under

Provincial Govt.

58,021 A
Unclassed Forests 38,326 A Linear Plantation 2,504 km

Table 1.3 Muzaffargarh Forests Statistics

Most of the forests of Muzaffargarh district are riverine forests, spread along the banks of River Indus and Chenab. Trees common in the district are kikar (Acacia arabica), shisham (Dalbergio sissoo), mulberry (Morus alba), eucalyptus (Eucalyptus cineraria), bamboo (bambusa), and coconut (Cocus nucifera).

Some of the important forests of the district include Jalarian Reserved Forest, Khudai Samti Reserved Forest, Sarwani Reserved Forest, Khanpur Bagga Sher Forest, Rakh Khanpur Garh, Ahmad Mohana Reserved Forest, Isson Wala Reserved Forest, and Khanwah Reserved Forest.

Soils

The soils of the district chiefly consist of alluvial loam mixed with sand and interspersed with patches of clay, sand, and salt impregnated soils.

Climate

The district features an arid climate which is extremely hot in summer and cold in winter. The summer season is from April to September and is generally hot. The months of May, June, and July are dry and also the hottest, when the temperature may go up to 51 °C; the nights, however, are comparatively cool and moderately pleasant. The highest recorded temperature in the district is 54 °C. Dust storms are common during the summer months. The winter months are generally mid-November to end of January, with December and January being the coldest months. The temperature during winter may drop down to 2 °C. The lowest temperature recorded is -1 °C.

Average rainfall in the district is 130 mm.

Seismic Activity

The district belongs to Zone 2A of the Seismic Zone Map of Pakistan which means minor to no damage due to earthquakes.

[1] Sindh Sagar Doab is the area between River Indus and River Jhelum

[2] Baseline Study of Rangla Wetland Complex Muzaffargh District by Dr. Mohd. Rafique PMNH, Islamabad.

[3] Source: Jamshed, Ali, Rana, Irfan, Birkmann, Joern & Nadeem, Obaidullah. (2018). “Changes in Vulnerability and Response Capacities of Rural Communities After Extreme Events: Case of Major Floods of 2010 and 2014 in Pakistan.” Journal of Extreme Events. 04. 1750013. 10.1142/S2345737617500130.

Population

The following table shows the population of Muzaffargarh district as per the 2017 Census:

Name Area Km2 Population Male% Female% Urban% Growth Rate %
Muzaffargarh District 8,249 4,322,009 51.3 48.7 16.1 2.64
Muzaffargarh Tehsil 2,377 1,621,744
Kot Addu Tehsil 3,471 1,345,941
Jatoi Tehsil 1,010 714,576
Alipur Tehsil 1,391 639,748

Table 1.4 Muzaffargarh Population Statistics

Religions[1]

Muslims 99.4%
Christians 0.3%
Hindus Negligible %
Ahmadis 0.1%
Scheduled Castes Negligible %
Others 0.2%

Table 1.5 Muzaffargarh Religious Distribution

Languages[2]

Urdu 4.9%
Punjabi 7.4%
Sindhi 0.08%
Pushto 0.9%
Balochi 0.13%
Seraiki 86.1%
Others 0.35%

Table 1.6 Muzaffargarh Languages

[1] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data has not been public yet.

[2] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data has not been public yet.

Economic ActivityEconomic Infrastructure

Economic Activity

The economy of the district is essentially agrarian, and agriculture is the backbone of the economy of the district. The main employers of Muzaffargarh are:

  • Agriculture with its Allied Livestock Breeding & Fishing, etc. (49.8%)
  • Construction (24.6%)
  • Community and Personal Services (13.3%)
  • Whole Sale/ Retail, Hotel/ Restaurant (7.1%)
  • Manufacture (3.2%)
  • Transport, Storage, and Communication (1.8%)
  • Others (0.2%)

Land Use

The following table shows the major land use statistics of the district as per Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19:

Total Area 824,900 HA Reported Area 831,000 HA
Total Cultivated Area 488,000 HA Net Sown 295,000 HA
Current Fallow 193,000 HA Total Uncultivated Area 343,000 HA
Culturable Waste 210,000 HA Forest Area 35,000 HA

Table 1.7 Land Use Statistics

Agriculture

A part of the district belongs to the Sandy Desert and another part to the Northern Irrigated Plains Agro-Ecological Zones of Pakistan. Irrigated areas are irrigated through canals and tube wells. Main crops of the district include sugarcane, wheat, cotton, rice, jowar, bajra, moong, maash, masoor, groundnut, maize, gram, guarseed, rapeseed & mustard, barley, groundnut, sesanum, sugar beet, linseed, sunflower, sunn hemp, and castor seed.

Fruits of the district include mangoes, dates, citrus, pomegranate, jaamun, guava, phalsa, banana, ber, and mulberry.

Main vegetables are onion, carrot, cauliflower, peas, bottle gourd, brinjal, okra, turnip, tomatoes, potatoes, garlic, chilies, coriander, and mint.

Livestock Breeding

Livestock breeding is the second most important economic activity of the district. Nearly all farmers keep a few heads of cattle and poultry to help increase the family’s income.

The following table shows the total number of small ruminants of the district as per Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19:

Cattle 1,100,000 Heads Buffaloes 690,000 Heads Sheep 445,000 Heads
Goats 1,298,000 Heads Camels 3,192 Heads Horses 2,475 Heads
Mules 1,091 Heads Asses 20,286 Heads

Table 1.8 Muzaffargarh Livestock Statistics

Thalli sheep, dera din panah goats, nachi goats, and thoroughbred horses are the indigenous breeds of the district.

Poultry

As per Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19, there are 791 Broiler, 112 Layer and 16 poultry breeding farms privately-owned) in Muzaffargarh district. According to Table 17 (Number of Commercial Poultry Farms and Number of Birds by Size of Flock), in total, there are 699 public poultry farms in the district.

Fishing

Fishing[1] is carried out in the pond area of Taunsa Headworks, River Indus (Kot Addu tehsil, Alipur tehsil and Jatoi tehsil), River Chenab (Alipur and Jatoi tehsils, as well as Muzaffargarh tehsil), pond area of Panjnad Headworks, Muzaffargarh Canal, Kot Addu Main Drain Dhand Nikka, Rangla Wetland Complex, and Ghazi Ghat Wetland complex in the district. Most of the fish is consumed locally and very little is exported to other parts of Pakistan.

Bee Keeping/ Apiculture

In Pakistan honey bee colonies were introduced in the 1980s, and since then more than 300,000 honey bee colonies have been successfully established in Pakistan, including Muzaffargarh.

[1] Manual of Fish. Fisheries Department Punjab

Irrigation

Muzaffargarh district is irrigated through the irrigation system controlled by Taunsa Barrage. The main canal irrigating the agricultural land of Muffargarh through this barrage is the Muzaffargarh canal. Rangpur canal, from Headworks Muhammad Wala, and the tail portion of Thal Canal originating from Jinnah Barrage are the other main canals irrigating the district.

The following table shows the irrigation statistics as per Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19:

Total Irrigated Area 625,000 HA Un-irrigated Area 28,000 HA
Canal Irrigated 114,000 HA Wells Irrigated 4,000 HA
Tube Well Irrigated area 64,000 HA Canal Tube Wells 435,000 HA
Canal Well Irrigated 6,000 HA Others 2,000 HA

Table 1.11 Muzaffargarh Irrigation Statistics

Figure 1.14 Taunsa Headworks

Minerals and Mining

At present, no minerals are being mined in the district.

Lasmo Oil, UK, has been given licenses to explore the region for oil and gas deposits.

Industry

At present, there is no industrial estate[1] in the district, and there are 162 small, medium, and large industrial units in the district. Industry-wise number of units in the district is as follows:

Type of Industry Number of Units Type of Industry Number of Units
Agricultural Implements 18 Cold Storage 02
Cotton Ginning & Pressing 81 Flour Mills 11
Vegetable Ghee/ Oil 01 Jute Textile 02
Packaging 01 Poly Propylene Bags 02
Power Generation 05 Readymade Garments 01
Refinery 01 Rice Mills 10
Soaps & Detergents 03 Sugar 03
Sulphuric Acid 01 Textile Composite 02
Textile Spinning 18

Table 1.9 Muzaffargarh District Industries

Trade

The district trades in agricultural produce and industrial goods made in the district.

Handicrafts

Basket weaving from reeds, mats made from various materials like reeds, and wool, rough ropes, and handmade fans from reeds are the common handicrafts of the district. In addition, hand-knotted carpets, shoes, and embroidery on textiles are also produced in the district.

Economic Infrastructure

The district is linked with Multan, Rajanpur, Dera Ghazi Khan, Rahim Yar Khan, Layyah, and Mianwali through black topped roads. The district’s headquarter is linked with its tehsil headquarters through black topped roads as well. The district is linked with Multan, Dera Ghazi Khan, and Layyah district through railway networks.

Roads

The following table shows the road statistics of the district as per Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19:

Total Road Length 2,243.0 km
National Highways 30.0 km
Motorways – km
Provincial Highways 2152.8 km
Sugar Cess Roads 60.2 km

Table 1.10 Muzaffargarh Road Statistics

Some of the important road links of the district include

  • Muzaffargarh-Kot Addu Road
  • National Highway N 70
  • Muzaffargarh-Alipur Road
  • Muzaffargarh-Khushab Road

Rail and Airways

The district is linked with other districts of Pakistan through Pakistan Railways’s railway network. Muzaffargarh, Mehmood Kot, and Kot Addu are the major railway stations in the district. These railway stations link the district to Lahore, Multan, and Rawalpindi as well as other major cities. In all, there are 11 railway stations in the district.[1]

There is no airport, be it commercial or military, in the district. The nearest airport is the Multan International Airport.

Figure 1.11 Railway Station Muzaffargarh

Radio and Television

There is 1 FM radio station in Muzaffargarh. There is no television station in the district, but TV can be viewed through boosters and cable.

Telecommunications

Pakistan Telecommunications Ltd. has established a network of telephone lines. In all there are 26 telephone exchanges[2] operating in the district, ranging in capacity from 300 lines to 7,000 lines. In addition, a number of cellular companies also provide their services in the district.

Post Offices/ Courier Services

There are 34 offices[3] of Pakistan Post in the district, with 18 branches in Muzaffargarh tehsil, 10 in Kot Addu tehsil, 3 in Alipur tehsil, and 3 in Jatoi tehsil.

Banking/ Financial Institutions

There are a total of 69 branches[4] of various banks in the district, with 28 in Muzaffargarh tehsil, 24 in Kot Addu tehsil, 08 in Alipur tehsil, and 09 in Jatoi tehsil.

According to the List of Reporting Bank Branches 2019 by State Bank of Pakistan, the following banks have branches in the district:

  • Allied Bank Ltd.
  • Bank Al Habib Ltd.
  • Habib Bank Ltd.
  • Muslim Commercial Bank Ltd.
  • Meezan Bank Ltd.
  • National Investment Bank Ltd.
  • Soneri Bank Ltd.
  • Summit Bank Ltd.
  • National Bank of Pakistan Ltd.
  • Faysal Bank Ltd.
  • Bank Alfalah Ltd.
  • The Bank of Punjab Ltd.
  • The Punjab Provincial Cooperative Bank Ltd.
  • United Bank Ltd.
  • Zarai Taraqiati Bank Ltd.

In all there are 120 branches of various conventional banks and 08 branches of different Islamic banks in the District.

Electricity and Gas

Multan Electric Power Company[5] (MEPCO) looks after the distribution and transmission of electricity to the district. There are 11 grid stations in the district, ranging in capacity from 66 KV to 132 KV.

Natural gas is available in Kot Addu, Muzaffargarh, and Khangarh.

Figure 1.12 A Power Generating Plant Muzaffargarh

[1] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study Muzaffargarh District 2012; Latest available.

[2] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study Muzaffargarh District 2012; Latest available.

[3] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study Muzaffargarh District 2012; Latest available.

[4] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study Muzaffargarh District 2012; Latest available.

[5] Directorate of Industries, Punjab, Pre-Investment Study Muzaffargarh District 2012; Latest available.

[1] Directorate of Industry, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study, Muzaffargarh District 2012; Latest available.

Education

The following table shows the details of educational facilities of the district as per Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19:

Institution Boys/Girls Institution Boys/Girls
Primary Schools 770/842 Middle Schools 116/109
Secondary Schools 90/45 Higher Secondary 36/23
Degree Colleges 10/12 Other Higher Secondary[1] 04/02
Other Degree Colleges[2] 03/09 Technical Training Institutes[3] 06/02
Vocational Institutes[4] -/05 Commercial Training Institutes[5] 03/-
Universities[6] 01 Govt. Mosque Schools 97/09
Medical Schools Engineering Schools

Table 1.12 Muzaffargarh Educational Institutions

There are a large number of private schools and colleges in the district, in addition to the government institutes listed above.

Health

The District Health Officer (DHO) is overall in charge of health services provided in the district. The DHO is supported by doctors, paramedics, technicians, and other support staff. The following table shows the number of health care institutions in the district as per Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19:

Institution No./Beds Institution No./Beds
Government Hospitals 10/487 Dispensaries 46/37
Rural Health Centers 13/240 Basic Health Units 78/146
T B Clinics -/- Mother Child Health Centers 05/05
Private Hospitals -/- Sub-Health Centers 07/-
Private Healthcare Providers[7] 54

Table 1.13 Muzaffargarh Health Institutions

Policing

Deputy Inspector General Police (DIGP) looks after Dera Ghazi Khan Region which comprises of Dera Ghazi Khan district, Muzaffargarh district, Rajanpur district, and Layyah district. Muzaffargarh district is further subdivided into 5 subdivisions and 22 police stations.[8] The police force in each region is headed by a District Police Officer (DPO) who is assisted by a varying number of Superintendents and Deputy Superintendents of Police.

[1] Includes Private, Federal and Schools owned by PAF and other organizations

[2] Includes Private, Federal and Schools owned by PAF and other organizations

[3] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study 2012 Muzaffargarh District; Latest available.

[4] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study 2012 Muzaffargarh District; Latest available.

[5] Directorate of Industries, Punjab. Pre-Investment Study 2012 Muzaffargarh District; Latest available.

[6] Campus of Virtual University of Pakistan

[7] Three Years Rolling Plan 2010-13, Muzaffargarh District; Latest available.

 

[8] Punjab Development Statistics 2018-19

Environment and Biodiversity

The Rangla Wetland Complex, one of two important wetlands in the district, has rich biodiversity in the desert area. The lakes on the western side are mostly freshwater lakes and are located in the agricultural areas, while those in the eastern side are located in the off-shoots of the Thal Desert and are mainly brackish in nature. These lakes were formed as backwaters and seepage ponds, after the construction of Muzaffargarh canal. Another important wetland is the Ghazi Ghat Wetland which was created after the construction of Ghazi Ghat Causeway and Bridge. Both these wetlands support a large variety of fish and wintering birds.[1]

Since the district is relatively free from industries, it has a relatively clean environment, with the major source of air pollution being vehicular transmissions and dust particles.

Flora and Fauna

Flora

Talhi or shisham (Dalbergio sissoo), kikar/ babul (Acacia Arabica), siris (Albizia lebbek), jhand (Prosopis spicigera), ber (Ziziphus jujube) and phog (Calligonum polygonoides) are the commonly grown trees in the district.

The aquatic vegetation in the seepage lagoons, wetland areas and protected Taunsa Barrage Wetland Area includes water lily (Nymphaea lotus), common reed (Phragmites karka), aquatic submerged reeds like Potamogeton crispus, and P. pectinatus, crow foot reed (Ranunculus aquatilis), wild sugarcane (Saccharum spontaneu), cattail weed (Typha angustata), eel grass (Vallisneria spiralis), horned pond weed (Zannichellia palustris), Carex fedia (a type of sedge), water thyme (Hydrilla verticillata), and Indian lotus (Nelumbium speciosum). Much of the land adjacent to the Taunsa Barrage Reservoir is under cultivation, mainly for cotton, sugarcane, wheat, and fodder crops.

Riverine forests along the Indus are dominated by shisham (Dalbergia sissoo) and poplar (Populus euphratica) as well as with ghaz or khagal (Tamarix dioica). Other natural vegetation includes kikar/ babul (Acacia nilotica), jhand (Prosopis cineraria), garden pea (Pisum arvense), Russian thistle (Salsola barysoma) and grasses like Cynodon dactylon, Eleusine compressa, and Panicum antidotale.

Riverine forests along the Indus are dominated by shisham (Dalbergia sissoo) and poplar (Populus euphratica) as well as tamarisk (Tamarix dioica). Other natural vegetation includes kikar/ babul (Acacia nilotica), jhand (Prosopis cineraria), peas (Pisum arvense), Russian thistle (Salsola baryosoma), Cynodon dactylon, Eleusine compressa, and Panicum antidotale (all three are types of grass).

Fauna

Wild boar, hog deer, jackals, and fox are common mammals of the district. Doves, sparrows, hoopoe, woodpeckers, pewit, crow, parrots, cuckoo, blue rock pigeons, kites, swallows, coots, shikra (a hawk), king crow, egrets, king fisher, and owls are common birds.

River turtles, Indian frogs, small forest lizard, cobra, three-toed snake, saw-scaled viper, Pakistani sand racer snake, skinks, and other lizards are the common reptiles of the Thal Desert.

The Taunsa Barrage Wetland Complex provides sanctuary to a wide variety of migratory birds such as shell duck, pied avocet, common teal, little stint, darter, Indian pond heron, cattle egret, and greater sand plover.

The Rangla Wetland Complex supports mammals like jackal, rabbit, fox, porcupine, squirrel, wild boar, desert cat, and rat species. Avifauna of this complex includes Sindh jungle sparrow, rufous-vented prinia (both being indigenous bird species), marbled teal, Jerdon’s babbler, bristled grass warbler, pallas fish eagle, and wintering Dalmatian pelican (all these birds are endangered in Pakistan).

Protected Areas and Endangered Wildlife

Following are the protected wildlife areas of the district:

  • Taunsa Barrage Wildlife Sanctuary (on Ramsar List)
  • Part of Thal Game Reserve
  • Ghazi Ghat Wetland Complex

The Rangla Wetland Complex is part of Thal Game Reserve. These provide sanctuary to migratory birds like the Indian pond heron, greater sand plover, Sindh jungle sparrow, rufous-vented prinia (both being indigenous bird species), marbled teal, Jerdon’s babbler, bristled grass warbler, pallas fish eagle, and wintering Dalmatian pelican (these birds are endangered in Pakistan). The forests provide sanctuary to hog deer, urial, and other mammals.

[1]Baseline Study of Rangla Wetland Complex, Muzaffargh District. Dr. Mohd. Rafique PMNH, Islamabad