Killa Saifullah District, also known as Qilla Saifullah or Saifullah Killa, is a district situated in the northwestern part of Balochistan province, Pakistan. Established in 1988, it was formed from the Upper Zhob sub-division and the Badinai sub-tehsil of the Zhob District. The district covers an area of 6,831 square kilometers and had a population of 342,932 as of the 2017 census.
Killa Saifullah District has a rich history dating back to the 13th century when the region was affected by the raids of Genghis Khan. Although there is limited information on foreign occupation, many forts, mounds, and karezes in the area are attributed to the Mughals. In the 18th century, Ahmed Shah granted a certificate to Bekar Nika, head of the Jogezai family, recognizing him as the ruler of Zhob. The region remained under Durrani and Barakzai rule until it came under British protection. The British launched the Zhob Expedition in 1884 to occupy the region, resulting in the demolition of several castles and the submission of numerous tribal Sardars.
The 2017 census recorded a population of 342,932, with 18.46% living in urban areas. The district had a sex ratio of 886 females per 1000 males and a literacy rate of 32.77%. Pashto is the predominant language, spoken by 97.84% of the population.
Killa Saifullah District is administratively divided into two sub-divisions: Qilla Saifullah and Muslim Bagh. These sub-divisions are further subdivided into tehsils and sub-tehsils, with each having its own Qanungo and patwar circles.
The district ranks 127th out of 141 ranked districts in Pakistan on the education score index. The literacy rate for the population aged 10 and older is 40%, while for females it is only 6%. Access to post-primary education and gender disparity are major issues in the district, with only 24% of schools being girls’ schools. Schools in the district also lack basic facilities such as electricity, toilets, boundary walls, and clean drinking water.
Economy and Resources:
Killa Saifullah District is rich in mineral wealth, boasting the second-largest reserves of high-quality chromite in the world. Gypsum, coal, salt, granite, marble, copper, and gabbro ores are also found in the district. The Pakistani government has initiated oil and gas exploration in the Murgha Fairzai, Shaighala, and Kakar Khurasan areas due to the region’s abundance of these resources.
The district is located approximately 182 km south of the provincial capital, Quetta, and is bordered by the districts of Zhob, Loralai, and Pishin.
Prominent individuals from Killa Saifullah District include Nawab Ayaz Jogezai, Usman Khan Kakar, Arman Loni, Wranga Loni, Arfa Siddiq, and Maulana Abdul Wasay.
The Architecture of Killa Saifullah
The architecture of Killa Saifullah is a testament to its rich history. The city is home to several mosques and shrines, including the famous Shah Ismail Shaheed’s Tomb, built in the 18th century. The city also has several forts and citadels, such as the Killa Saifullah Fort, which is one of the most prominent landmarks in the area. The traditional houses of Killa Saifullah are also a sight to see, with their unique designs and intricate carvings.
Famous Landmarks in Killa Saifullah
Killa Saifullah is home to several famous landmarks that are worth visiting. Saifullah Lake is a stunning natural wonder, surrounded by mountains and greenery. Shah Ismail Shaheed’s Tomb, located in the center of the city, is a significant historical site. Killa Saifullah Fort, built during the British era, is a well-preserved fortification that provides a glimpse into the city’s colonial past.
Cultural Festivals and Traditions in Killa Saifullah
Killa Saifullah is known for its cultural festivals and traditions. Eid-ul-Azha is one of the most celebrated festivals in the city, where people sacrifice animals and distribute meat to the poor. The Sibi Mela is another famous festival in the area, where people from all over Balochistan gather to showcase their arts, crafts, and traditions. The city is also home to traditional music and dance, which is an integral part of Balochi culture.
The Importance of Tourism in Killa Saifullah
Tourism is essential for the economic growth of Killa Saifullah. The city’s historic buildings and traditions need to be preserved for future generations. By promoting tourism, the city can also promote its culture and heritage, leading to a better understanding of Balochi people and their way of life.
In conclusion, Killa Saifullah is a city with a rich cultural heritage that should not be missed. Through exploring the city’s history, architecture, landmarks, and traditions, visitors can gain a better understanding of Balochi people and their way of life. By promoting tourism in the area, the city can not only benefit economically but also preserve its historic buildings and traditions for future generations.