Sindh-Mirpurkhas

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Introduction

Mirpurkhas district is located between 24° 48Ꞌ 33″ to 25° 48Ꞌ 7” North latitudes and 68° 59′ 3″ to 69° 16′ 53″ East longitudes. It is bounded on the North by Sanghar district, on the Northwest by Tando Allahyar district, on the Southwest by Badin and Tharparkar districts, and on the East by Umerkot district. Mirpurkhas means the Land of High Mirs, and is named after Mir Ali Murad Talpur, who founded the city of Mirpurkhas in 1806.

District at a Glance

Name of District Mirpurkhas District
District Capital Mirpurkhas City
Population[1] 1,506,000 persons
Area[2] 2,925 km2
Population Density 514.5 persons/ km2 (Projected Density: 496 persons/ km2)
Population Growth Rate[3] 2.1%
Male Population[4] 51.7%
Female Population[5] 48.3%
Urban Population[6] 28.2%
Tehsils 06 Talukas:

1.    Digri Taluka

2.    Kot Ghulam Mohammad Taluka

3.    Mirpurkhas Taluka

4.    Husain Bukhsh Mari Taluka

5.    Sindhri Taluka

6.    Jhudo Taluka

7.    Shujabad Taluka

Main Towns Digri, Jamrao, Mirwah Gorchani, Kot Ghulam Muhammad Kachhelo, Tando Jan Muhammad, Jhudo, Roshanabad, Ratanabad, Mirpurkhas, and Kunri
Literacy Rate[7] 48%
Male Literacy Rate[8] 60%
Female Literacy Rate[9] 35%
Major Economic Activity[10] Agriculture with its Allied Livestock Breeding & Fishing 47.3%
Elementary Occupations 33.4%
Service workers & Shop & Market Sales workers 5.1%
Professionals 5.1%
Others 9%
Main Crops Cotton, rice, sugarcane, jowar, bajra, maize, sesanum, wheat, barley, rapeseed & mustard, moong, maash, arhar, masoor, sugar beet, guar seed, linseed, sunflower, and soya bean
Major Fruits Mango, watermelon, musk melon, banana, chikoo, dates, guava, jaamun, papaya, phalsa, citrus, ber, and mulberry
Major Vegetables Onion, peas, okra, tinda, brinjal, bitter gourd, bottle gourd, pumpkin, melon pumpkin, luffa, cucumber, long melon, purslane, arum, beans, field vetch, lotus roots, turnip, carrots, spinach, tomatoes, cauliflower, potato, chilies, ginger, turmeric, spearmint, garlic, coriander, and fennel
Forests (Area)[11] 12.95 HA[12]
Provincial Roads[13] 178.9 km
Access Roads[14] 410.2 km
Secondary Roads[15] 405.8 km
No. of Grid Stations[16] 2 grid stations, one with capacity of 132 KV and one of 66 KV
No. of Tel. Exchanges Data not available, but telephone facilities are available in the entire district
Industrial Zones There is a Small Industry Estate, an Industrial Park and an Industrial Estate in the district functioning under the Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Total number of industries[17] functioning in these estates is 15
Major Industry and Number of Industrial Units Cotton Ginning 6 Units
Engineering 2 Units
Oil Mills 2 Units
Sugar Mills 1 Units
Flour Mills 4 Units
Household Size[18] 6.1 persons per house
Houses (Piped Water Inside)[19] 30.4%
Houses with Electricity[20] 30.4%

Table 1.1 Mirpurkhas District at a Glance

[1] Mirpurkhas District Census Report 1998

[2] 2017 Census

[3] 2017 Census

[4] 2017 Census

[5] 2017 Census

[6] 2017 Census

[7] Pakistan Social & Living Measurement Survey 2013-14 (PSLM); Latest available

[8] PSLM

[9] PSLM

[10] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data is being compiled

[11] Sindh Development Statistics 2017-18

[12] According to Land Utilization Statistics the area under forest is only 1000 HA.

[13] Road List 2009 by GoS (Latest available)

[14] Road List 2009

[15] Road List 2009

[16] Environment & Social Assessment HESCO by Elan Partners; latest available

[17] Sindh Devolved Social Services Program, Tranche Report

[18] 1998 Census; 2017 Census Data has not been made public yet.

[19] 1998 Census; 2017 Census Data has not been made public yet.

[20] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data has not been made public yet.

Brief HistoryGovernmental StructureAdministrative DivisionsHeritage Sites and Recreation/ Picnic Spots

Brief History

Mirpurkhas district was, at the time of partition, a part of Thar and Parkar district, which was a district of the Sindh Division of Bombay Presidency and included the Great Thar Desert on its eastern side. The areas of Mirpurkhas district were detached and made a district in 1990 by the Government of Pakistan.

The area of land which now constitutes Mirpurkhas shares much with the early historical upheavals of the province of Sindh; it was a thriving Buddhist settlement known as Kahu-Jo-Daro, some of the stupas (dome-shaped structures erected as Buddhist shrines) of which can still be seen in Kahu-Jo-Daro, an archeological site of this district. It is known that Buddhism thrived in most parts of Sindh during Emperor Ashoka’s[1] reign (around 313 BC).

From 570 to 711 AD the Rai Dynasty ruled the area. They were overtaken by the Chach who formed the Brahman Dynasty. The dominion of the Rai and Brahman Dynasties extended from Multan to the sea and from the desert to the hills. In 711 AD, Sindh was invaded by the 17 year old Arab General, Muhammad Bin Qasim, and Arab rule was established in the entire area, including Mirpurkhas, for the next 300 years.

Arab rule was taken over by the Soomras, who ruled this land from 1026-1350 AD, when the Ghaznavids invaded, and established their rule. 1351 saw the rise of the Samma Dynasty who ruled the area from 1351 to 1521, after which the Arghuns and Tarkhans ruled the region, from 1521-1591. The Tarkhans were ousted by the Mughal Emperor Akbar in 1591. He appointed Governors to rule Sindh, who remained loyal to the Mughals. A network of forts manned by cavalry and musketeers further extended Mughal power in Sindh. During the Mughal rule, the Kalhoras gained power through concessions from the Mughals who rewarded their loyalty. In 1701, Nawab Kalhora was assigned powers to rule Sindh through a Shahi Firman (imperial decree) by the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, which allowed the Kalhoras to rule Sindh from 1701 to 1782. During their rule, the Kalhoras invited a Sindhi speaking Baloch tribe, the Talpurs, to lead their army. The Talpurs settled in Sindh and began to gain power and strength by buying large tracts of land. The two tribes remained peaceful till one of their chiefs, Mir Behram Khan Talpur, was murdered by the Kalhoras in 1774, leading to war between the two tribes, with the Kalhoras being defeated at the Battle of Halani in 1783. Peace between the two warring tribes was established after the Mughal Emperor Akbar Shah II (the Emperor at Delhi from 1760-1837) issued a firman (decree) in the year 1783, designating Mir Fateh Ali Khan Talpur as the new Nawab of Sindh. The Talpurs continued to rule Sindh till 1848 when, after the Battle of Miani, Sindh was annexed to the British Empire.

Mir Tharo Khan was the founder of the Mankani branch of the Talpurs; he participated in the Battle of Halani against the Kalhoras. When Mir Fateh Ali Talpur started his rule from Hyderabad (Sindh), Mir Tharo Khan Talpur went to southeastern Sindh (the desert or the Thar and Parkar[2] area) and laid the foundation of a separate state in 1784. He named this state Mirpurkhas and made Keti Mir Tharo its capital. Tharo Khan’s son, Mir Murad Ali Talpur, founded Mirpurkhas town in 1806 and made it the capital of the state of Mirpurkhas founded by his father Mir Tharo Khan. This state included territories of the present day southeastern Sindh, or Tharparkar district.

Mir Sher Muhammad Talpur succeeded Mir Ali Murad Talpur and built a fort in Mirpurkhas. He ran a kutchery (a courtroom session) from within this fort. Mirpurkhas remained the capital of the Talpur Mirs of Mirpurkhas until 1843, when Sindh was annexed to British India. Mir Sher Muhammad Talpur, also known as the Lion of Sindh, was the last Talpur ruler to resist the British incursions into Sindh at the battleground of Dubbo near Hyderabad. A plaque on the gate of the fort still reads: “The fort within which this building stands was residence [sic] of Mir Sher Muhammad Khan, the Lion of Sind.”

After annexation of Sindh in 1843, the British made the Thar and Parkar areas along with the areas of Mirpurkhas (most of southeastern Sindh) a part of the Hyderabad Collectorate. There was an upheaval in Nagarparkar in 1859 (part of Thar and Parkar district) and the desert area was detached from Hyderabad. In 1906, the Thar and Parkar region was upgraded to a district level and Mirpurkhas was made its taluka. Mirpurkhas town was made the capital of the taluka as well as the district.

After Partition, due to its proximity to the Indian border, Mirpurkhas welcomed refugees from the newly found Indian nation to Pakistan. It acted as a primary railway junction for the first trains to travel across Rajasthan to the Sindh province.

The administration of Thar and Parkar district remained unchanged till 1990, when Mirpurkhas was detached from it. In 1993, Umerkot district was created from Mirpurkhas, and the Mirpurkhas district took its present shape.

Governmental Structure

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

  • Number of seats in National Assembly 03
  • Number of seats in Provincial Assembly 04

The district has 2 Municipal Committees:

  • Mirpurkhas
  • Shujaabad

It has 6 Town Committees:

  • Hingomo
  • Kot Ghulam Muhammad
  • Digri
  • Tando Jan Muhammad
  • Jhuddo
  • Naukot

Administrative Divisions

In 1993, when Mirpurkhas district was created, it had 3 Tehsils/Talukas: Mirpurkhas Taluka, Kot Ghulam Muhammad Taluka and Digri Taluka; in 2005, these were reconstituted, and 3 more Talukas were created. Currently, there are 6 Talukas/ Tehsils[3] of the district as follows:

Digri Taluka (reconstituted) 6 Union Councils
Sindhri (new; constituted from 2 UCs of Sanghar Dstrict, 2 from Taluka Khipro and 2 from Mirpurkhas Taluka[4] in 2005) 6 Union Councils
Jhudo Taluka (constituted from Digri[5] in 2005) 6 Union Councils
Kot Ghulam Mohammad Bhurgari Taluka 8 Union Councils
Husain Buksh Mari Taluka (new taluka from Mirpurkhas[6] in 2005) 3 Union Councils
Mirpurkhas Taluka (reconstituted[7] in 2005) 12 Union Councils

Table 1.2 Mirpurkhas Administrative Divisions

Heritage Sites and Recreation/ Picnic Spots

Following are the heritage sites in the district:

  • Buddhist Stupa, Kahu-Jo-Daro (protected): presumed to be a 5,000 year old Buddhist settlement near Mirpurkhas city
  • Chitori Graveyard (protected): contains graves of the Talpurs. It is situated 17 km from Mirpurkhas on the Mirpurkhas-Sindhri Highway
  • Fort Naukot (Protected): located 63 km South of Mirpurkhas town/city. It was built by Mir Karam Ali Khan Talpur. The fort is 111.6 m long and 97 m wide and is made up of burnt bricks in Mud Mortar. The fort has 2 burnt brick stairs to provide access to the top of the fort wall. Inside the fort is a large ground which was mostly used for Town Hall meetings
  • Tomb of Tharo Khan, Chittori Graveyard (protected): Chitori is the historic ancestral graveyard of the Talpur Mirs of Mirpurkhas, Sindh. The sandstone tombs built by Talpur rulers over the graves of their elders are the finest examples of Sindh’s architecture prevalent in the 17th and 18th centuries. The graveyard is located about 22 km Northeast of Mirpurkhas town on Mirpurkhas-Khipro road
  • Other tombs of Talpur rulers, Chitori Graveyard

The canal banks have good spots for day long picnics with family and friends.

Figure 1.4 Chitori Graveyard

Figure 1.5 Tomb of Tharo Khan, Chitori Graveyard

Figure 1.6 Some Tombs at Chitori Graveyard

 

[1] Ashoka was a Hindu King who, after engaging in a bloody war (known as the war of Kalinga, now Orissa) that resulted in more than 300,000 casualties, repented, and renounced war. History does not prove that he converted to Buddhism, but he is known to have promoted the religion.

[2] The district now called Tharparkar was called Thar and Parkar during British rule.

[3] Sindh Devolved Social Services Program Tranche Report Mirpurkhas District.

[4] Tranche Report Mirpurkhas District

[5] Tranche Report Mirpurkhas District

[6] Tranche Report Mirpurkhas District

[7] Tranche Report Mirpurkhas District

Topography

Mirpurkhas district is mostly a plain and irrigated area, and is located 70 km from Hyderabad. The district has fertile land, making conditions appropriate for farming through irrigation. With a connection to the River Indus via irrigation canals like the Let Wah, Mirpurkhas district’s main concentration has been on horticulture farming over the years.

Rivers, Streams, and Lakes

The district does not have a river, but has a natural inundation canal, which is locally called the Nara Dhoro (Eastern Nara Canal). This canal flows through the district without entering the desert zone (Tharparkar and Umerkot Areas) and, through a network of channels, provides water for drinking and irrigation purposes.

Puran Dhora is a natural seasonal stream in the district flowing in the Mirpurkhas Taluka. Another seasonal stream of the district is Jarwar Wah.

The Kalaankar Lake in Mirpurkhas district is a seasonal lake situated between sand dunes.

Forests

Total forest area in Mirpurkhas district is 1,000 HA only. This area mostly consists of rangeland situated in Kot Ghulam Muhammad Bhurgari Taluka.

The flora of the rangelands of the district consist of gum Arabic or khumbat (Acacia Senegal), jand or kandi (Prosopis cineraria), desert teak or lahura (Tecomella undulata), baonli or kikri (Acacia jacquemontii), peelu or toothbrush tree (Salvadora oleoides), karir (Capparis deciduas), African foxtail grass or buffel grass (Cenchrus ciliaris), sand bur or kutta ghas (Cenchrus biflorus), taman/ tuman (Panicum turgidum), and blue panic grass or gnat (Panicum antidotale).

Soils

The soils of Mirpurkhas district consist of loamy and some sandy, young, stratified flood-plain soils of arid and semi-arid zones and consist of alluvial deposits of the Indus; the region is irrigated by canals of the Indus Basin Irrigation System.

Climate

The climate of the district is extreme. The months from April to October are very hot; this heat is relieved by the blowing of the southwestern breeze from the sea. The mean maximum temperatures during these months vary between 37 °C to 42 °C, while the mean minimum temperatures during this period vary between 18 °C to 27 °C. The winter months are December, January, and February, when maximum and minimum temperatures are 28 °C and 9 °C respectively.

Rainfall varies from year to year. Rain mostly occurs during the Monsoon period, between July and September; the mean annual rainfall in Mirpurkhas is about 232 mm.

Seismic Activity

The district lies in Zone 2 A of the Seismic Activity Zone Map of Pakistan which means there is low to moderate damage to property due to earthquakes.

Population

The following table shows the population statistics[1] of the district:

District/Taluka Area

Km2

Population Male% Female% Urban% Growth Rate %
Mipurkhas District 2,925 1,505,876 51.7 48.3 28.2 2.14
Mirpurkhas Taluka[2] 1,088 260,182
Digri Taluka[3] 1,075 214,499
Kot Ghulam Mohammad 762 273,193
Sindhri Taluka[4] 1,000 236,258
Jhudo Taluka 202,228
Husain Buksh Mari 150,285
Shujaabad Taluka[5] 169,231

Table 1.3 Mirpurkhas Population Statistics

Religion[6]

Muslims 66.4%
Christians 0.5%
Hindus 29%
Ahmadis 0.3%
Scheduled Casts 3.7%
Others 0.1%

Table 1.4 Mirpurkhas Religions

Languages[7]

Urdu 18.3%
Punjabi 10.7%
Sindhi 61.7%
Pushto 0.9%
Balochi 1.9%
Seraiki 0.3%
Others 6.1%

Table 1.5 Mirpurkhas Languages

[1] Population Statistics taken from Sindh Development Statistics 2017-18 .

[2] Contains areas of parts of Sindhri Taluka and Husain Bakhsh Mari Taluka as well

[3] Contains area of Jhudo Taluka as well

[4] Data for Sindhri, Jhudo, and Husain Buksh Mari is not available since these Talukas were created after 1998

[5] Created in 2012 out of Mirpurkhas Taluka

[6] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data has not been made public yet.

[7] 1998 Census; 2017 Census data has not been made public yet.

Economic ActivityEconomic Infrastructure

Economic Activity

The major employers of the district are[1]:

  • Agriculture with its Allied Livestock Breeding & Fishing (47.3%)
  • Elementary Occupations (33.4%)
  • Service Workers & Shop & Market Sales Workers (5.1%)
  • Professionals (5.1%)
  • Others (9%)

AgricultureLand UseLivestock BreedingIrrigationPoultryBee KeepingFishingMiningIndustryTrade (Import/ Export)Handicrafts

Agriculture

The district belongs to the Southern Irrigated Plains Agro-Ecological Zone of Pakistan. The district is irrigated by the Indus Basin Irrigation System. Traditionally, the cotton produced at Mirpurkhas was considered to be the best in the country; in fact, the cotton produced in the region was exported by the British to other nations.

Mirpurkhas district is an irrigated agricultural district. Near its district boundary with Tharparkar districts, there are some rangelands which provide fodder and grazing areas for livestock. Cheelkand is a minor hamlet in Mirpurkhas district in which camel breeding is taken up on a large scale. These camels are exported to Afghanistan and Iran.

The district is a trade center for grain, fabrics, and cotton products. The district is famous for its mangoes and produces 250 different varieties of the fruit. The most famous mango variety is the Sindhri.

Cotton, rice, sugarcane, jowar, bajra, maize, sesanum, wheat, barley, rapeseed & mustard, moong, maash, arhar, masoor, sugar beet, guar seed, linseed, sunflower, and soya been are included in the crops of the district.

Mangoes, bananas, dates, citrus fruits, chikoo, guava, jaamun, watermelon, musk melon, papaya, phalsa, ber, and mulberry are the major fruits grown in the district.

Major vegetables and condiments of the district are capsicum, chilies, ginger, turmeric, spearmint, lady finger, tinda, brinjal, bitter gourd, bottle gourd, pumpkin, melon pumpkin, luffa, cucumber, long melon, beans, lotus root, all pulses, sesame, soya bean, peas, gowar, onions, garlic, coriander, fennel, cumin seeds, potatoes, tomatoes, turnips, carrots, cauliflower, spinach, cabbage, sweet potatoes, radish, lettuce, sugar beet, capsicum, and canola.

Land Use

The following table shows the land use pattern in Mirpurkhas district as per Sindh Development Statistics 2017-18:

Land Use Area Land Use Area
Geographical Area 353,000 HA Reported Area 353,000 HA
Cultivated Area 309,000 HA Current Fallows 143,000 HA
Uncultivated Area 43,000 HA Forest Area 1,000 HA
Culturable Waste 17,000 HA

Table 1.6 Mirpurkhas Land Use Statistics

Livestock Breeding

Livestock breeding is an allied field of agriculture and hence is an important economic activity of the rural population of the district. Cattle farms and poultry farms kept for the purpose of breeding are restricted to urban areas, whereas nearly all farmers keep a few heads of animals. The following table shows the livestock population in the district as per Sindh Development Statistics 2017-18:

Cattle 202,000 Heads Buffaloes 234,000 Heads Sheep 68,000 Heads
Goats 666,000 Heads Camels 3,000 Heads Asses 15,000 Heads
Horses 1,000 Heads Mules – Heads

Table 1.7 Mirpurkhas Livestock Statistics

Beiari, jattan, barbary, and tapir or lappi goats, larri camels, and kachhi sheep (a cross breed of sheep) are abundantly found in the district.

Irrigation

The district has a well-developed canal irrigation system. With the construction of Jamrao Canal in the British era, the agricultural importance of this district increased significantly. Jamrao Canal starts from Nara Canal on the East bank of River Indus. 2 major canals i.e. Jamrao Canal, and the West Branch Canal, as well as their distributaries irrigate district Mirpurkhas. In this district, there are 4 distributaries, 2 minors and 34 outlets[2] directly drawing water from the Jamrao Canal. The water distribution system of West Branch Canal consists of 2 distributaries, 3 minors and 62 outlets drawing water directly from the West branch[3]. West Branch Canal is the largest off-shoot of Jamrao Canal. Some portions of the district are also irrigated by Nasir Canal.

The following table shows the mode of irrigation and area irrigated by each system as per Sindh Development Statistics 2017-18:

Mode of Irrigation Area Mode of Irrigation Area
Total Irrigated Area 132,608 HA Canal Irrigated 89,012 HA
Well Irrigated – HA Tube Well irrigated 43,596 HA
Un-Irrigated Area 33,789 HA

Table 1.10 Mirpurkhas Irrigation Statistics

Poultry

Commercial poultry farming is mostly done in urban centers of the district, whereas keeping, and breeding, poultry is an important economic activity of the women in rural areas. There are 507 poultry farms[2] in the district.

Bee Keeping

Honey-bee keeping was introduced in Pakistan in the 1980s when IUCN and UNDP introduced apiculture in the coastal villages of Sindh. Since then, honey-bee keeping has been slowly and gradually growing as a cottage industry in nearly all parts of Pakistan, including Mirpurkhas.

Fishing

Inland fishing is an important economic activity of the rural population in Mirpurkhas. It is carried out in various water bodies and canals of the district.

Mining

Oil and gas are being mined at the Mirpurkhas block.

 Industry

There is a Small Industry Estate, an Industrial Park and an Industrial Estate in the district functioning under the Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The following table shows the type of industry and number of units[3] of each in the district:

Industry No. of Units Industry No. of Units
Cotton Ginning 18 Flour Mills 09
Sugar Mills 05 Rice Mills 02
Ice Factories[4] 02 Oil Mills[5] 05

Table 1.8 Mirpurkhas Industries

There are 8 small Industrial Units[6] functioning under self-employment schemes and 132 units functioning under Small Industrial Estates Ordinance in the district. Steel engineering, vegetable ghee, ice factories, and rice mills are working under the self-employment scheme, and steel engineering, cotton textile, building material, and Reinforced Cement Concrete (RCC) pipe Industrial Units are operating under the Small Industrial Estates Ordinance.

Trade (Import/ Export)

The district trades in mangoes, guavas, and wheat both nationally and internationally.

Handicrafts

The handwoven carpet industry is the major handicraft/ cottage industry of the district. Carvings on wood and brass, and jewelry in gold, silver, and stones are also some of the handicrafts of the district.

Economic Infrastructure

There is a strong network of roads in the district. The district headquarters of Mirpurkhas is linked with its taluka headquarters of Digri and Kot Ghulam Muhammad through Black Topped roads.

Mirpurkhas is also connected to other parts of Pakistan via a railway line. A railway line also connects the district to India. The district has one airport.

RoadsRail and AirwaysRadio and TelevisionTelecommunications – Post Offices/ Courier ServicesBanking/ Financial ServicesElectricity and GasEducationHealth –Policing

Roads

A Provincial Highway connects Hyderabad with Mirpurkhas via Sultanabad, Tando Allahyar, and Tando Jam.

As per the Road List issued by the Sindh Government, the following chart shows the road lengths in Mirpurkhas district:

Provincial Highways 178.9 km
Secondary Roads 410.2 km
Access Roads 405.8 km

Table 1.9 Mirpurkhas Road Statistics

As per the Sindh Development Statistics 2017-18, there are 955 km of Black Topped roads in the District.

Some of the important roads in the district are:

  • Road from Mirpurkhas to Umer Kot via Jamrao, Akri, Sufi Fakir, and Mori
  • Road from Mirpurkhas to Badin via Mirwah Gorchani Digri and Tando Bago
  • Road from Mirpurkhas to Mithi via Digri, Tando Jan Muhammad, Jhudo, and Nau Kot
  • Road from Mirpurkhas to Sanghar via Kahu-Jo-Daro and Sindhri
  • Road from Jhiluri to Kot Ghulam Muhammad
  • Road from Kot Ghulam Muhammad to Mirwah Gorchani

Rail and Airways

The town of Mirpurkhas serves as a railway junction for both meter and broad gauge lines.

Important railway stations on the meter gauge railway line are Mirpurkhas, Jamrao, Kot Ghulam Muhammad, Kachelo Farm, Digri, Tando Jan Muhammad, Jhundo, Naokot, Talhi, Kunri, Khunjeshi, Samaro Road, and Pithoro. Important stations on a second meter gauge railway line are Mirpurkhas, Khan, Wazirbad, and Nawabshah (now S. Benazirabad). A third meter gauge line connects Mirpurkhas with Khokrapar (a border town of Pakistan) and goes into India. This line connects Jamrao, Shadi Pali, Plithoro, Hiral, Dhoronaro, Hirasar, Naya Chore, Parchar Ji Verhi, Jalu Chaunro, and Khokhrapar; across the border, the same line goes to Bar Mer, India, connecting Munabau Gadro Road, Ramsar, and Jodhpur.

In 2005, work started on converting this meter gauge railway line to Khokhrapar to broad gauge. The new link now connects Karachi (Pakistan) to Jodhpur (India) by a new train service, called the Thar Express.

There is a small commercial airport called Mirpurkhas Airport in the district.

Radio and Television

Mirpurkhas has its own FM radio station. Even though the district has no TV station of its own, TV can be viewed through boosters and cable.

Telecommunications

Most of the cellular phone companies of Pakistan provide their services in Mirpurkhas. PTCL has laid fiber optics lines for communication purposes. PTCL also has their broadband internet service in Mirpurkhas.

Post Offices/ Courier Services

Pakistan Post Office has its offices in all taluka headquarters with Urgent Mail Service (UMS) also easily available.

Banking/ Financial Services

Since Mirpurkhas is mostly an urban district, most of Pakistan’s national banks have their branches in the district. Following are some of the banks operating in Mirpurkhas[1]:

  • Al-Baraka Bank Ltd.
  • Allied Bank Ltd.
  • Askari Bank Ltd.
  • Bank Al Falah Ltd.
  • Al Habib Bank Ltd.
  • Bank Islami Pakistan Ltd.
  • Dubai Islamic Bank Pakistan Ltd.
  • Habib Bank Ltd.
  • KASB Bank Ltd.
  • Muslim Commercial Bank Ltd.
  • Meezan Bank Ltd.
  • National Bank of Pakistan Ltd.
  • National Investment Bank Ltd.
  • Summit Bank Ltd.
  • United Bank Ltd.
  • Zarai Taraqiati Bank Ltd.

In all there are 63 branches of conventional banks and 11 branches of Islamic banks in the District.

Electricity and Gas

Mirpurkhas is connected to the main transmission lines of WAPDA. There are 2 grid stations in the district, where one has a capacity of 132 KV and the other has a capacity of 66 KV.

Natural gas is used as fuel for domestic purposes; this gas is transmitted through national gas pipelines/ transmission lines.

Education

The following table shows the number of government-owned educational institutions in the district as per Sindh Development Statistics 2017-18:

Institution Boys/Girls Institution boys/girls
Primary Schools 1,595/213 Middle schools 78/22
High Schools 67/23 Higher Secondary Schools 01/01
Colleges 03/02 Technical Schools 01/-
Commercial 02/- Vocational 02/03
Medical Colleges[4] 01 Engineering Colleges[5] 01
Universities Agriculture Colleges

Table 1.11 Mirpurkhas Educational Institutes

In addition, there are privately-owned schools imparting education to both boys and girls at all levels.

Figure 1.7 Muhammad Institute of Science & Technology

Health

The following table shows the Health Care Institutions in the district as per Health Profile Sindh Districts 2017:

Institution No./Beds Institution No./Beds
Government Hospitals 04/362 Dispensaries 117/-
Rural Health Centers 05/50 Basic Health Units 38/76
T B Clinics 33/- Mother Child Health Centers 13/-
Private Hospitals 08/254 Private TB Clinics 01/-
Private Dispensaries 17/- Private MCHC 01/-

Table 1.12 Mirpurkhas Health Institutes

 

In addition there 04 Maternity homes, 01 Leprosy clinic and 02 Unani Shifa Khanas[6] in the District.

Policing

The Additional Inspector General Police (AIG) Hyderabad is in-charge of policing the district. The District Police Officer (DPO) Mipurkhas reports directly to the AIG Hyderabad.

There are 12 Police stations in the district.

Figure 1.8 A Social Club Building, Mirpurkhas

Figure 1.9 A Medical Complex, Mirpurkhas

Figure 1.10 Old Kaho Bazaar, Mirpurkhas District

 

[1] List of Reporting Bank Branches by State Bank of Pakistan 2019

[2] Pakistan Emergency Situation Analysis District Mirpurkhas by USAID.

[3] Pakistan Emergency Situation Analysis

[4] Muhammad Medical College (Private)

[5] Muhammad Institute of Science & Technology

[6] Unani Shifakhana use herbal medicines

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

[2] Table 17 Number of Commercial Poultry Farms and Number of Birds by Size of Flock

[3] Economic Profile Mirpurkhas District 2005, Sindh Development Institute; (newer data not available)

[4] Economic Profile Mirpurkhas

[5] Economic Profile Mirpurkhas

[6] Economic Profile Mirpurkhas

Environment and Biodiversity

Except dust particles, there is no other major source of air pollution in the district. Groundwater table is high and the groundwater is potable.

Flora and Fauna

Flora

The common flora of the district include talhi/ sheesham (Dilbergio sisoo), neem (Azardirachta indica), karir (Tamarix gallica), pipal (Ficus religosa), karir (Copparis aphylla), babul (Acacia nilotica), siris/ rain tree or sareehan (Albizia lebbeck), bamboo or baans (Bambusa glaucescens), Indian cherry or gaeduri (Cordia gharaf), eucalyptus or sufaida (Eucalyptus camaldulensis), banyan or burgad (Ficus benghalensis), khejri or long tree or kandi (Prosopis cineraria), velvet mesquite or devi (Prosopis juliflora), tooth brush tree or khabar (Salvadora persica), rose apple or jaamun (Syzygium cumini), imli or tamarind (Tamarindus indica), and ber or jujube (Zizyphus mauritiana).

According to the study on ethno-botanical plants of Mirpurkhas district conducted by Faisal Hussain, S. Shahid Shaukat, Muhammad Abid, and Farzana Usman of the Botany Department, Karachi University (2012), there are a large number of plants growing in the district. These plants all have medicinal value. Some of these include garlic or thoam (Allium sativum), capsicum or shimla mirch (Capsicum annum), tara mira (Eruca sativa), fennel or saunf (Foeniculum vulgare), phalsa (Grewia asiatica L), fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum L), camelthorn or kandiro (Alhagi maurorum), caper or karir (Capparis deciduas), raat ki raani (Cestrum nocturnum), bitter apple or tooh (Citrullus colocynthis), halfa grass or drubah (Desmostachya bipinnata), jasmine or matayo (Jasminum sambac), myrtle or mehandi (Lawsonia inermis L), oleander or gul zangi (Nerium oleander L), cactus or thuhar (Opuntia ficus-indica L.), rose or gulab (Rosa indica L.), saltwort or laani (Suaeda fruticosa), aloe kunwar boti (Aloe vera), aak or madar (Calotropis procera), bhang or hemp (Cannabis sativa), choi moi or touch me not (Mimosa pudica),and yellow berried nightshade or patt pyron (Solanum surattense).

Fauna

Mammals found in the district include the Asian jackal, hedgehog (rare), desert fox (rare), mongoose, porcupine, black-naped hare (rare), wild boar, otter (rare), palm squirrel, pangolin (rare), ratel (rare), field mouse, grey mongoose, rice rat, house mouse, and kuhls bat.

Avifauna include myna, kingfishers, cattle egret, pond heron, crow, quail, rock pigeons, blue jay, coot khanai, red-wattled lapwing, blue-tailed anteater, house sparrow, Indian shag, cormorants, bulbuls, parakeets, bee-eaters, bush chat, Indian robin, doves, partridge, peacocks (all commonly found birds), and shikra, barn owl, Indian scoops owl and saras (less common).

Reptilian fauna of the district include agamas, garden lizards, turtles, sand boa, cobras, Indian monitor snakes, and vipers.

Protected Wildlife Areas and Wildlife

There are no wildlife protected areas in the district, but the protected rangeland areas provide refuge to the avifauna and mammals of the district such as partridges, pea fowl, sandgrouse, birds of prey, rare species of chinkara, desert cat, Indian wild ass, and the endangered houbara bustard.