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Context of Pakistan



Pakistan (Urdu: پَاکِسْتَان [ˈpaːkɪstaːn]), officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan (ISO: اِسْلامی جَمْہُورِیَہ پَاکِسْتَان, islāmi jamhūriyāh pākistān), is a country in South Asia. It is the world's fifth-most populous country, with a population of over 249 million people, and has the world's second-largest Muslim population, just behind Indonesia. Islamabad is the nation's capital, while Karachi is its largest city and financial centre, followed by Lahore and Faisalabad. Pakistan is the 33rd-largest country in the world by area and the second-largest in South Asia, spanning 881,913 square kilometres (340,509 square miles). It has a 1,046-kilometre (650-mile) coastline along the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman in the sou...Read more



Pakistan (Urdu: پَاکِسْتَان [ˈpaːkɪstaːn]), officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan (ISO: اِسْلامی جَمْہُورِیَہ پَاکِسْتَان, islāmi jamhūriyāh pākistān), is a country in South Asia. It is the world's fifth-most populous country, with a population of over 249 million people, and has the world's second-largest Muslim population, just behind Indonesia. Islamabad is the nation's capital, while Karachi is its largest city and financial centre, followed by Lahore and Faisalabad. Pakistan is the 33rd-largest country in the world by area and the second-largest in South Asia, spanning 881,913 square kilometres (340,509 square miles). It has a 1,046-kilometre (650-mile) coastline along the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman in the south, and is bordered by India to the east, Afghanistan to the west, Iran to the southwest, and China to the northeast. It is separated narrowly from Tajikistan by Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor in the north, and also shares a maritime border with Oman.

Pakistan is the site of several ancient cultures, including the 8,500-year-old Neolithic site of Mehrgarh in Balochistan, the Indus Valley civilisation of the Bronze Age, and the ancient Gandhara civilisation. The regions that comprise the modern state of Pakistan were the realm of multiple empires and dynasties, including the Achaemenid, the Maurya, the Kushan, the Gupta; the Umayyad Caliphate in its southern regions, the Samma, the Hindu Shahis, the Shah Miris, the Ghaznavids, the Delhi Sultanate, the Mughals, and most recently, the British Raj from 1858 to 1947.

Spurred by the Pakistan Movement, which sought a homeland for the Muslims of British India, and election victories in 1946 by the All-India Muslim League, Pakistan gained independence in 1947 after the Partition of the British Indian Empire, which awarded separate statehood to its Muslim-majority regions and was accompanied by an unparalleled mass migration and loss of life. Initially a Dominion of the British Commonwealth, Pakistan officially drafted its constitution in 1956, and emerged as a declared Islamic republic. In 1971, the exclave of East Pakistan seceded as the new country of Bangladesh after a nine-month-long civil war. In the following four decades, Pakistan has been ruled by governments whose descriptions, although complex, commonly alternated between civilian and military, democratic and authoritarian, relatively secular and Islamist. Pakistan elected a civilian government in 2008, and in 2010 adopted a parliamentary system with periodic elections.

Pakistan is a middle power nation, and has the world's sixth-largest standing armed forces. It is a declared nuclear-weapons state, and is ranked amongst the emerging and growth-leading economies, with a large and rapidly-growing middle class. Pakistan's political history since independence has been characterised by periods of significant economic and military growth as well as those of political and economic instability. It is an ethnically and linguistically diverse country, with similarly diverse geography and wildlife. The country continues to face challenges, including poverty, illiteracy, corruption and terrorism. Pakistan is a member of the United Nations, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the Commonwealth of Nations, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, and the Islamic Military Counter-Terrorism Coalition, and is designated as a major non-NATO ally by the United States.

More about Pakistan

Basic information
  • Currency Pakistani rupee
  • Calling code +92
  • Internet domain .pk
  • Mains voltage 230V/50Hz
  • Democracy index 4.31
Population, Area & Driving side
  • Population 223773700
  • Area 881913
  • Driving side left
    Indus Valley Civilization
    Priest-King from Mohenjo-Daro (c....Read more
    Indus Valley Civilization
    Priest-King from Mohenjo-Daro (c. 2500 BCE)

    Some of the earliest ancient human civilisations in South Asia originated from areas encompassing present-day Pakistan.[1] The earliest known inhabitants in the region were Soanian during the Lower Paleolithic, of whom stone tools have been found in the Soan Valley of Punjab.[2] The Indus region, which covers most of present day Pakistan, was the site of several successive ancient cultures including the Neolithic Mehrgarh[3] and the Bronze Age Indus Valley civilisation[4][5] (2,800–1,800 BCE) at Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro.[6]

    Vedic Period
    Standing Buddha from Gandhara (1st–2nd century CE)

    The Vedic period (1500–500 BCE) was characterised by an Indo-Aryan culture; during this period the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed, and this culture later became well established in the region.[7] Multan was an important Hindu pilgrimage centre.[8] The Vedic civilisation flourished in the ancient Gandhāran city of Takṣaśilā, now Taxila in the Punjab, which was founded around 1000 BCE.[9][3]

    Classical Period

    The western regions of Pakistan became part of Achaemenid Empire around 519 BCE. In 326 BCE, Alexander the Great conquered the region by defeating various local rulers, most notably, the King Porus, at Jhelum.[10] It was followed by the Maurya Empire, founded by Chandragupta Maurya and extended by Ashoka the Great, until 185 BCE. The Indo-Greek Kingdom founded by Demetrius of Bactria (180–165 BCE) included Gandhara and Punjab and reached its greatest extent under Menander (165–150 BCE), prospering the Greco-Buddhist culture in the region.[3][11] Taxila had one of the earliest universities and centres of higher education in the world, which was established during the late Vedic period in the 6th century BCE.[12][13] The school consisted of several monasteries without large dormitories or lecture halls where the religious instruction was provided on an individualistic basis.[13] The ancient university was documented by the invading forces of Alexander the Great and was also recorded by Chinese pilgrims in the 4th or 5th century CE.[14]

    At its zenith, the Rai Dynasty (489–632 CE) ruled Sindh and the surrounding territories.[15]

    Islamic conquest

    The Arab conqueror Muhammad ibn Qasim conquered Sindh in 711 CE.[16][17] The Pakistan government's official chronology claims this as the time when the foundation of Pakistan was laid[16][18] but the concept of Pakistan arrived in the 19th century. The Early Medieval period (642–1219 CE) witnessed the spread of Islam in the region. During this period, Sufi missionaries played a pivotal role in converting a majority of the regional Buddhist and Hindu population to Islam.[19] Upon the defeat of the Turk and Hindu Shahi dynasties which governed the Kabul Valley, Gandhara (present-day Khyber Pakhtunkwa), and western Punjab in the 7th to 11th centuries CE, several successive Muslim empires ruled over the region, including the Ghaznavid Empire (975–1187 CE), the Ghorid Kingdom, and the Delhi Sultanate (1206–1526 CE). The Lodi dynasty, the last of the Delhi Sultanate, was replaced by the Mughal Empire (1526–1857 CE).

    Badshahi Mosque, Lahore

    The Mughals introduced Persian literature and high culture, establishing the roots of Indo-Persian culture in the region.[20] In the region of modern-day Pakistan, key cities during the Mughal period were Lahore and Thatta,[21] both of which were chosen as the site of impressive Mughal buildings.[22] In the early 16th century, the region remained under the Mughal Empire.[23]

    In the 18th century, the slow disintegration of the Mughal Empire was hastened by the emergence of the rival powers of the Maratha Confederacy and later the Sikh Empire, as well as invasions by Nader Shah from Iran in 1739 and the Durrani Empire of Afghanistan in 1759. The growing political power of the British in Bengal had not yet reached the territories of modern Pakistan.

    Colonial period
    Sir Syed Ahmad Khan (1817–1898), whose vision (Two-nation theory) formed the basis of Pakistan 
    Sir Syed Ahmad Khan (1817–1898), whose vision formed the basis of Pakistan
    Muhammad Ali Jinnah (1876–1948) served as Pakistan's first Governor-General and the leader of the Pakistan Movement 
    Muhammad Ali Jinnah (1876–1948) served as Pakistan's first Governor-General and the leader of the Pakistan Movement.

    None of the territory of modern Pakistan was ruled by the British, or other European powers, until 1839, when Karachi, a small fishing village ruled by Talpurs of Sindh with a mud fort guarding the harbour, was taken, and held as an enclave with a port and military base for the First Afghan War that soon followed. The rest of Sindh was taken in 1843, and in the following decades, first the East India Company, and then after the post-Sepoy Mutiny (1857–1858) direct rule of Queen Victoria of the British Empire, took over most of the country partly through wars, and also treaties. The main wars were that against the Baloch Talpur dynasty, ended by the Battle of Miani (1843) in Sindh, the Anglo-Sikh Wars (1845–1849) and the Anglo-Afghan Wars (1839–1919). By 1893, all modern Pakistan was part of the British Indian Empire, and remained so until independence in 1947.

    Under the British, modern Pakistan was mostly divided into the Sind Division, Punjab Province, and the Baluchistan Agency. There were various princely states, of which the largest was Bahawalpur.

    A rebellion in 1857 called the Sepoy mutiny of Bengal was the region's major armed struggle against the British.[24] Divergence in the relationship between Hinduism and Islam created a major rift in British India that led to motivated religious violence in British India.[25] The language controversy further escalated the tensions between Hindus and Muslims.[26] The Hindu renaissance witnessed an awakening of intellectualism in traditional Hinduism and saw the emergence of more assertive influence in the social and political spheres in British India.[27] A Muslim intellectual movement, founded by Sir Syed Ahmed Khan to counter the Hindu renaissance, envisioned as well as advocated for the two-nation theory[28] and led to the creation of the All-India Muslim League in 1906. In contrast to the Indian National Congress's anti-British efforts, the Muslim League was a pro-British movement whose political program inherited the British values that would shape Pakistan's future civil society.[29] The largely non-violent independence struggle led by the Indian Congress engaged millions of protesters in mass campaigns of civil disobedience in the 1920s and 1930s against the British Empire.[30][31]

    Clock Tower, Faisalabad, built by the British government in the 19th century

    The Muslim League slowly rose to mass popularity in the 1930s amid fears of under-representation and neglect by the British of the Indian Muslims in politics. In his presidential address of 29 December 1930, Allama Iqbal called for "the amalgamation of North-West Muslim-majority Indian states" consisting of Punjab, North-West Frontier Province, Sind, and Baluchistan.[32] The perceived neglect of Muslim interests by Congress led British provincial governments during the period of 1937–39 convinced Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan to espouse the two-nation theory and led the Muslim League to adopt the Lahore Resolution of 1940 presented by Sher-e-Bangla A.K. Fazlul Haque, popularly known as the Pakistan Resolution.[28] In World War II, Jinnah and British-educated founding fathers in the Muslim League supported the United Kingdom's war efforts, countering opposition against it whilst working towards Sir Syed's vision.[33]

    Pakistan Movement

    The 1946 elections resulted in the Muslim League winning 90 percent of the seats reserved for Muslims. Thus, the 1946 election was effectively a plebiscite in which the Indian Muslims were to vote on the creation of Pakistan, a plebiscite won by the Muslim League. This victory was assisted by the support given to the Muslim League by the support of the landowners of Sindh and Punjab. The Indian National Congress, which initially denied the Muslim League's claim of being the sole representative of Indian Muslims, was now forced to recognise the fact.[34] The British had no alternative except to take Jinnah's views into account as he had emerged as the sole spokesperson of the entirety of British India's Muslims. However, the British did not want colonial India to be partitioned, and in one last effort to prevent it, they devised the Cabinet Mission plan.[35]

    As the cabinet mission failed, the British government announced its intention to end the British Rule in 1946–47.[36] Nationalists in British India—including Jawaharlal Nehru and Abul Kalam Azad of Congress, Jinnah of the All-India Muslim League, and Master Tara Singh representing the Sikhs—agreed to the proposed terms of transfer of power and independence in June 1947 with the Viceroy of India, Lord Mountbatten of Burma.[37] As the United Kingdom agreed to the partitioning of India in 1947, the modern state of Pakistan was established on 14 August 1947 (27th of Ramadan in 1366 of the Islamic Calendar), amalgamating the Muslim-majority eastern and northwestern regions of British India.[31] It comprised the provinces of Balochistan, East Bengal, the North-West Frontier Province, West Punjab, and Sindh.[28][37]

    In the riots that accompanied the partition in Punjab Province, it is believed that between 200,000 and 2,000,000[38] people were killed in what some have described as a retributive genocide between the religions[39] while 50,000 Muslim women were abducted and raped by Hindu and Sikh men, 33,000 Hindu and Sikh women also experienced the same fate at the hands of Muslims.[40] Around 6.5 million Muslims moved from India to West Pakistan and 4.7 million Hindus and Sikhs moved from West Pakistan to India.[41] It was the largest mass migration in human history.[42] A subsequent dispute over the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir eventually sparked the Indo-Pakistani War of 1947–1948.[43]

    Independence and modern Pakistan
    Queen Elizabeth II was the last monarch of independent Pakistan, before it became a republic in 1956.

    After independence in 1947, Jinnah, the President of the Muslim League, became the nation's first Governor-General as well as the first President-Speaker of the Parliament, but he died of tuberculosis on 11 September 1948.[44] Meanwhile, Pakistan's founding fathers agreed to appoint Liaquat Ali Khan, the secretary-general of the party, the nation's first Prime Minister. From 1947 to 1956, Pakistan was a monarchy within the Commonwealth of Nations, and had two monarchs before it became a republic.[45]

    The creation of Pakistan was never fully accepted by many British leaders, among them Lord Mountbatten.[46] Mountbatten clearly expressed his lack of support and faith in the Muslim League's idea of Pakistan.[47] Jinnah refused Mountbatten's offer to serve as Governor-General of Pakistan.[48] When Mountbatten was asked by Collins and Lapierre if he would have sabotaged Pakistan had he known that Jinnah was dying of tuberculosis, he replied 'most probably'.[49]

    The American CIA film on Pakistan, made in 1950, examines the history and geography of Pakistan.

    "You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place or worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed – that has nothing to do with the business of the State."

    —Muhammad Ali Jinnah's first speech to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan[50]

    Maulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani, a respected Deobandi alim (scholar) who occupied the position of Shaykh al-Islam in Pakistan in 1949, and Maulana Mawdudi of Jamaat-i-Islami played a pivotal role in the demand for an Islamic constitution. Mawdudi demanded that the Constituent Assembly make an explicit declaration affirming the "supreme sovereignty of God" and the supremacy of the shariah in Pakistan.[51]

    A significant result of the efforts of the Jamaat-i-Islami and the ulama was the passage of the Objectives Resolution in March 1949. The Objectives Resolution, which Liaquat Ali Khan called the second most important step in Pakistan's history, declared that "sovereignty over the entire universe belongs to God Almighty alone and the authority which He has delegated to the State of Pakistan through its people for being exercised within the limits prescribed by Him is a sacred trust". The Objectives Resolution has been incorporated as a preamble to the constitutions of 1956, 1962, and 1973.[52]

    Democracy was stalled by the martial law that had been enforced by President Iskander Mirza, who was replaced by the Commander-in-Chief of the Pakistan Army, General Ayub Khan. After adopting a presidential system in 1962, the country experienced exceptional growth until a second war with India in 1965 that led to an economic downturn and wide-scale public disapproval in 1967.[53][54] Consolidating control from Ayub Khan in 1969, President Yahya Khan had to deal with a devastating cyclone that caused 500,000 deaths in East Pakistan.[55]

    In 1970 Pakistan held its first democratic elections since independence, meant to mark a transition from military rule to democracy, but after the East Pakistani Awami League won against the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Yahya Khan and the military establishment refused to hand over power.[56][57] Operation Searchlight, a military crackdown on the Bengali nationalist movement, led to a declaration of independence and the waging of a war of liberation by the Bengali Mukti Bahini forces in East Pakistan,[57][58] which in West Pakistan was described as a civil war as opposed to a war of liberation.[59]

    Signing of the Tashkent Declaration to end hostilities with India in 1965 in Tashkent, USSR, by President Ayub alongside Bhutto (centre) and Aziz Ahmed (left)

    Independent researchers estimate that between 300,000 and 500,000 civilians died during this period while the Bangladesh government puts the number of dead at three million,[60] a figure that is now nearly universally regarded as excessively inflated.[61] Some academics such as Rudolph Rummel and Rounaq Jahan say both sides[62] committed genocide; others such as Richard Sisson and Leo E. Rose believe there was no genocide.[63] In response to India's support for the insurgency in East Pakistan, preemptive strikes on India by Pakistan's air force, navy, and marines sparked a conventional war in 1971 that resulted in an Indian victory and East Pakistan gaining independence as Bangladesh.[57]

    With Pakistan surrendering in the war, Yahya Khan was replaced by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto as president; the country worked towards promulgating its constitution and putting the country on the road to democracy. Democratic rule resumed from 1972 to 1977—an era of self-consciousness, intellectual leftism, nationalism, and nationwide reconstruction.[64] In 1972 Pakistan embarked on an ambitious plan to develop its nuclear deterrence capability with the goal of preventing any foreign invasion; the country's first nuclear power plant was inaugurated in that same year.[65][66] Accelerated in response to India's first nuclear test in 1974, this crash program was completed in 1979.[66]

    Democracy ended with a military coup in 1977 against the leftist PPP, which saw General Zia-ul-Haq become the president in 1978. From 1977 to 1988, President Zia's corporatisation and economic Islamisation initiatives led to Pakistan becoming one of the fastest-growing economies in South Asia.[67] While building up the country's nuclear program, increasing Islamisation,[68] and the rise of a homegrown conservative philosophy, Pakistan helped subsidise and distribute US resources to factions of the mujahideen against the USSR's intervention in communist Afghanistan.[69] Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province became a base for the anti-Soviet Afghan fighters, with the province's influential Deobandi ulama playing a significant role in encouraging and organising the 'jihad'.[70]

    President Zia died in a plane crash in 1988, and Benazir Bhutto, daughter of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, was elected as the country's first female Prime Minister. The PPP was followed by conservative Pakistan Muslim League (N), and over the next decade the leaders of the two parties fought for power, alternating in office while the country's situation worsened; economic indicators fell sharply, in contrast to the 1980s. This period is marked by prolonged stagflation, instability, corruption, nationalism, geopolitical rivalry with India, and the clash of left wing-right wing ideologies.[71] As PML (N) secured a supermajority in elections in 1997, Nawaz Sharif authorised nuclear testings (See:Chagai-I and Chagai-II), as a retaliation to the second nuclear tests ordered by India, led by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in May 1998.[72]

    President George W. Bush meets with President Musharraf in Islamabad during his 2006 visit to Pakistan.

    Military tension between the two countries in the Kargil district led to the Kargil War of 1999, and turmoil in civic-military relations allowed General Pervez Musharraf to take over through a bloodless coup d'état.[73][74] Musharraf governed Pakistan as chief executive from 1999 to 2001 and as President from 2001 to 2008—a period of enlightenment, social liberalism, extensive economic reforms,[75] and direct involvement in the US-led war on terrorism. When the National Assembly historically completed its first full five-year term on 15 November 2007, the new elections were called by the Election Commission.[76]

    After the assassination of Benazir Bhutto in 2007, the PPP secured the most votes in the elections of 2008, appointing party member Yousaf Raza Gillani as Prime Minister.[77] Threatened with impeachment, President Musharraf resigned on 18 August 2008, and was succeeded by Asif Ali Zardari.[78] Clashes with the judicature prompted Gillani's disqualification from the Parliament and as the Prime Minister in June 2012.[79] By its own financial calculations, Pakistan's involvement in the war on terrorism has cost up to $118 billion,[80] sixty thousand casualties and more than 1.8 million displaced civilians.[81] The general election held in 2013 saw the PML (N) almost achieve a supermajority, following which Nawaz Sharif was elected as the Prime Minister, returning to the post for the third time in fourteen years, in a democratic transition.[82] In 2018, Imran Khan (the chairman of PTI) won the 2018 Pakistan general election with 116 general seats and became the 22nd Prime Minister of Pakistan in election of National Assembly of Pakistan for Prime Minister by getting 176 votes against Shehbaz Sharif (the chairman of PML (N)) who got 96 votes.[83] In April 2022, Shehbaz Sharif was elected as Pakistan's new prime minister, after Imran Khan lost a no-confidence vote in the parliament.[84]

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    ^ Saigol, Rubina (2014). "What is the most blatant lie taught through Pakistan textbooks?". Dawn. Retrieved 14 August 2014.
    - Rafi, Shazia (2015). "A case for Gandhara". Dawn. Retrieved 19 February 2015.
    ^ Lapidus, Ira Marvin (2002). A history of Islamic societies. Cambridge University Press. pp. 382–384. ISBN 978-0-521-77933-3. ^ Robert L. Canfield (2002). Turko-Persia in historical perspective. Cambridge University Press. pp. 4–21. ISBN 978-0-521-52291-5. Retrieved 28 December 2011. ^ Chandra, Satish (2005). Medieval India: From Sultanat to the Mughals Part II. Har-Anand Publications. p. 365. ISBN 978-81-241-1066-9. ^ Malik, Iftikhar Haider (2008). The History of Pakistan. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 79. ISBN 978-0-313-34137-3. ^ Metcalf, B.; Metcalf, T. R. (2006). A Concise History of Modern India (2nd ed.). Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-68225-1. ^ "Sepoy Rebellion: 1857". 12 September 2003. Retrieved 19 December 2013. ^ Markovits, Claude (2 November 2007). "India from 1900 to 1947". Online Encyclopedia of Mass Violence. Retrieved 2 February 2015. ^ Ak̲h̲tar, Altāf Ḥusain Ḥālī; Talk̲h̲īṣ, Salim (1993). Ḥayāt-i jāved. Lāhore: Sang-i Mīl Publications. ISBN 978-969-35-0186-5. ^ Coward, Harold G., ed. (1987). Modern Indian responses to religious pluralism. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press. ISBN 978-0-88706-572-9.
    - Sarkar, R.N. (2006). Islam related Naipual [sic] (1st ed.). New Delhi: Sarup & Sons. ISBN 978-81-7625-693-3.
    ^ a b c "Country Profile: Pakistan". Library of Congress. 1995. pp. 2–3, 6, 8. Retrieved 2 September 2019. ^ Qureshi, M. Naeem (1999). Pan-Islam in British Indian politics: a study of the Khilafat movement, 1918–1924. Leiden [u.a.]: Brill. pp. 57, 245. ISBN 978-90-04-11371-8. ^ John Farndon (1999). Concise encyclopaedia. Dorling Kindersley Limited. p. 455. ISBN 978-0-7513-5911-4.
    - Daniel Lak (4 March 2008). India express: the future of a new superpower. Viking Canada. p. 113. ISBN 978-0-670-06484-7. Retrieved 14 March 2012.
    ^ a b Cohen, Stephen Philip (2004). The idea of Pakistan (1st pbk. ed.). Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press. ISBN 978-0-8157-9761-6. ^ "Sir Muhammad Iqbal's 1930 Presidential Address". Speeches, Writings, and Statements of Iqbal. Retrieved 19 December 2006. ^ "Understanding Jinnah's Position on World War I and II Lessons to be learned". United Kingdom: Politact. 5 January 2009. Archived from the original on 3 February 2015. Retrieved 3 February 2015. ^ Mohiuddin, Yasmin Niaz (2007). Pakistan: A Global Studies Handbook. ABC-CLIO. p. 70. ISBN 978-1-85109-801-9. In the elections of 1946, the Muslim League won 90 percent of the legislative seats reserved for Muslims. It was the power of the big zamindars in Punjab and Sindh behind the Muslim League candidates that led to this massive landslide victory (Alavi 2002, 14). Even Congress, which had always denied the League's claim to be the only true representative of Indian Muslims had to concede the truth of that claim. The 1946 election was, in effect, a plebiscite among Muslims on Pakistan. ^ Mohiuddin, Yasmin Niaz (2007). Pakistan: A Global Studies Handbook. ABC-CLIO. p. 71. ISBN 978-1-85109-801-9. Despite the League's victory in the elections, the British did not want the partition of British India. As a last attempt to avoid it, Britain put forward the Cabinet Mission Plan, according to which India would become a federation of three large, self-governing provinces and the central government would be limited to power over foreign policy and defense, implying a weak center. ^ Akram, Wasim. "Jinnah and cabinet Mission Plan 1946". Retrieved 3 February 2015 – via ^ a b Stanley Wolpert (2002). Jinnah of Pakistan. Oxford University Press. pp. 306–332. ISBN 978-0-19-577462-7. ^ "Murder, rape and shattered families: 1947 Partition Archive effort underway". Dawn. 13 March 2015. Retrieved 14 January 2017. There are no exact numbers of people killed and displaced, but estimates range from a few hundred thousand to two million killed and more than 10 million displaced.
    - Basrur, Rajesh M. (2008). South Asia's Cold War: Nuclear Weapons and Conflict in Comparative Perspective. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-134-16531-5. An estimated 12–15 million people were displaced, and some 2 million died. The legacy of Partition (never without a capital P) remains strong today ...
    - Isaacs, Harold Robert (1975). Idols of the Tribe: Group Identity and Political Change. Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-44315-0. 2,000,000 killed in the Hindu-Muslim holocaust during the partition of British-India and the creation of India and Pakistan
    - D'Costa, Bina (2011). Nationbuilding, Gender and War Crimes in South Asia. Routledge. p. 53. ISBN 978-0-415-56566-0. Estimates of the dead vary from 200,000 (the contemporary British figure) to 2 million (a subsequent Indian speculation). Today, however, it is widely accepted that nearly a million people died during Partition (Butalia, 1997).
    - Butalia, Urvashi (2000). The Other Side of Silence: Voices From the Partition of British India. Duke University Press.
    - Sikand, Yoginder (2004). Muslims in India Since 1947: Islamic Perspectives on Inter-Faith Relations. Routledge. p. 5. ISBN 978-1-134-37825-8.
    ^ Brass, Paul R. (2003). "The partition of India and retributive genocide in the Punjab, 1946–47: means, methods, and purposes" (PDF). Journal of Genocide Research. Carfax Publishing: Taylor and Francis Group. pp. 81–82 (5(1), 71–101). Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 April 2015. Retrieved 16 August 2014. In the event, largely but not exclusively as a consequence of their efforts, the entire Muslim population of the eastern Punjab districts migrated to West Punjab and the entire Sikh and Hindu populations moved to East Punjab in the midst of widespread intimidation, terror, violence, abduction, rape, and murder.
    - "20th-century international relations (politics) :: South Asia". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 16 August 2014.
    ^ Daiya, Kavita (2011). Violent Belongings: Partition, Gender, and National Culture in Postcolonial India. Temple University Press. p. 75. ISBN 978-1-59213-744-2. The official estimate of the number of abducted women during Partition was placed at 33,000 non-Muslim (Hindu or Sikh predominantly) women in Pakistan, and 50,000 Muslim women in India.
    - Singh, Amritjit; Iyer, Nalini; Gairola, Rahul K. (2016). Revisiting India's Partition: New Essays on Memory, Culture, and Politics. Lexington Books. p. 14. ISBN 978-1-4985-3105-4. The horrific statistics that surround women refugees-between 75,000–100,000 Hindu, Muslim and Sikh women who were abducted by men of the other communities, subjected to multiple rapes, mutilations, and, for some, forced marriages and conversions-is matched by the treatment of the abducted women in the hands of the nation-state. In the Constituent Assembly in 1949 it was recorded that of the 50,000 Muslim women abducted in India, 8,000 of then were recovered, and of the 33,000 Hindu and Sikh women abducted, 12,000 were recovered.<- br>Abraham, Taisha (2002). Women and the Politics of Violence. Har-Anand Publications. p. 131. ISBN 978-81-241-0847-5. In addition thousands of women on both sides of the newly formed borders (estimated range from 29,000 to 50,000 Muslim women and 15,000 to 35,000 Hindu and Sikh women) were abducted, raped, forced to convert, forced into marriage, forced back into what the two States defined as 'their proper homes', torn apart from their families once during partition by those who abducted them, and again, after partition, by the State which tried to 'recover' and 'rehabilitate' them.
    - Perspectives on Modern South Asia: A Reader in Culture, History, and ... – Kamala Visweswara. nGoogle (16 May 2011).
    ^ Hasan, Arif; Raza, Mansoor (2009). Migration and Small Towns in Pakistan. IIED. p. 12. ISBN 978-1-84369-734-3. When the British Indian Empire was partitioned in 1947, 4.7 million Sikhs and Hindus left what is today Pakistan for India, and 6.5 million Muslims migrated from India to Pakistan. ^ Bates, Crispin (3 March 2011). "The Hidden Story of Partition and its Legacies". BBC History. Retrieved 16 August 2014. Unfortunately, it was accompanied by the largest mass migration in human history of some 10 million.
    - "Rupture in South Asia" (PDF). UNHCR. Retrieved 16 August 2014.
    - Tanya Basu (15 August 2014). "The Fading Memory of South Asia's Partition". The Atlantic. Retrieved 16 August 2014.
    ^ Subir Bhaumik (1996). Insurgent Crossfire: North-East India. Lancer Publishers. p. 6. ISBN 978-1-897829-12-7. Retrieved 15 April 2012.
    - "Resolution adopted by the United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan". Mount Holyoke College. Archived from the original on 2 September 2014. Retrieved 19 January 2010.
    ^ "BBC – History – Historic Figures: Mohammad Ali Jinnah (1876–1948)". BBC. Retrieved 20 December 2016. Jinnah became the first governor general of Pakistan, but died of tuberculosis on 11 September 1948. ^ Kumarasingham, Harshan (2013), THE 'TROPICAL DOMINIONS': THE APPEAL OF DOMINION STATUS IN THE DECOLONISATION OF INDIA, PAKISTAN AND CEYLON, vol. 23, Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, p. 223, JSTOR 23726109, Few today, including those who work on the subcontinent, recollect that India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka did not become republics the day British rule ended. Even distinguished scholars of Empire like Perry Anderson and A. G. Hopkins have made the common assumption that India naturally became a republic upon independence on 15 August 1947. Instead, all three of these South Asian states began their independent life as Realms within the British Commonwealth and mirrored the style and institutions of the Dominions of Canada, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. Though their sovereignty was in no way impaired by this seemingly ambiguous position they all held the British sovereign as their head of state who was represented in each capital by a governor- general appointed on the advice of the local prime minister. India, Pakistan and Ceylon were Realms from 1947 to 1950, 1947 to 1956 and 1948 to 1972 respectively. ^ McGrath, Allen (1996). The Destruction of Pakistan's Democracy. Oxford University Press. p. 38. ISBN 978-0-19-577583-9. Undivided India, their magnificent imperial trophy, was besmirched by the creation of Pakistan, and the division of India was never emotionally accepted by many British leaders, Mountbatten among them. ^ Ahmed, Akbar S. (1997). Jinnah, Pakistan and Islamic Identity: The Search for Saladin. Psychology Press. p. 136. ISBN 978-0-415-14966-2. Mountbatten's partiality was apparent in his own statements. He tilted openly and heavily towards Congress. While doing so he clearly expressed his lack of support and faith in the Muslim League and its Pakistan idea. ^ Wolpert, Stanley (2009). Shameful Flight: The Last Years of the British Empire in India. Oxford University Press. p. 163. ISBN 978-0-19-974504-3. Mountbatten tried to convince Jinnah of the value of accepting him, Mountbatten, as Pakistan's first governor-general, but Jinnah refused to be moved from his determination to take that job himself. ^ Ahmed, Akbar (2005). Jinnah, Pakistan and Islamic Identity: The Search for Saladin. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-134-75022-1. When Mountbatten was asked by Collins and Lapierre if he would have sabotaged Pakistan if he had known that Jinnah was dying of tuberculosis, his answer was instructive. There was no doubt in his mind about the legality or morality of his position on Pakistan. 'Most probably,' he said (1982:39). ^ "Muhammad Ali Jinnah's first Presidential Address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan (August 11, 1947)". JSpeech. Retrieved 1 March 2016. ^ Hussain, Rizwan. "Pakistan". The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World. Mawlānā Shabbīr Ahmad Usmānī, a respected Deobandī ʿālim (scholar) who was appointed to the prestigious position of Shaykh al-Islām of Pakistan in 1949, was the first to demand that Pakistan become an Islamic state. But Mawdūdī and his Jamāʿat-i Islāmī played the central part in the demand for an Islamic constitution. Mawdūdī demanded that the Constituent Assembly make an unequivocal declaration affirming the "supreme sovereignty of God" and the supremacy of the sharīʿah as the basic law of Pakistan. ^ Hussain, Rizwan. "Pakistan". The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World. The first important result of the combined efforts of the Jamāʿat-i Islāmī and the ʿulamāʿ was the passage of the Objectives Resolution in March 1949, whose formulation reflected compromise between traditionalists and modernists. The resolution embodied "the main principles on which the constitution of Pakistan is to be based". It declared that "sovereignty over the entire universe belongs to God Almighty alone and the authority which He has delegated to the State of Pakistan through its people for being exercised within the limits prescribed by Him is a sacred trust", that "the principles of democracy, freedom, equality, tolerance and social justice, as enunciated by Islam shall be fully observed", and that "the Muslims shall be enabled to order their lives in the individual and collective spheres in accord with the teaching and requirements of Islam as set out in the Holy Qurʿan and Sunna". The Objectives Resolution has been reproduced as a preamble to the constitutions of 1956, 1962, and 1973. ^ James Wynbrandt (2009). A brief history of Pakistan. Infobase Publishing. pp. 190–197. ISBN 978-0-8160-6184-6. Retrieved 27 December 2011. ^ Anis Chowdhury; Wahiduddin Mahmud (2008). Handbook on the South Asian economies. Edward Elgar Publishing. pp. 72–75. ISBN 978-1-84376-988-0. Retrieved 27 December 2011. ^ Mission with a Difference. Lancer Publishers. p. 17. GGKEY:KGWAHUGNPY9. Retrieved 13 March 2012. ^ Adam Jones (2004). Genocide: A Comprehensive Introduction. Routledge. p. 420. ISBN 978-0-415-35384-7. ^ a b c R. Jahan (2004). Samuel Totten (ed.). Teaching about genocide: issues, approaches, and resources. Information Age Publishing. pp. 147–148. ISBN 978-1-59311-074-1. ^ "1971 war summary". BBC News. 2002. Retrieved 16 March 2009. ^ Bose, Sarmila (2005). "Anatomy of Violence: Analysis of Civil War in East Pakistan in 1971". Economic and Political Weekly. 40 (41): 4463–4471. ISSN 2349-8846. JSTOR 4417267. ^ Dummett, Mark (16 December 2011). "Bangladesh war: The article that changed history". BBC News. Retrieved 3 March 2016. ^ Hiro, Dilip (2015). The Longest August: The Unflinching Rivalry Between India and Pakistan. Nation Books. p. 216. ISBN 978-1-56858-503-1. ^ "Statistics of Pakistan's Democide". Retrieved 10 February 2015. ^ Beachler, Donald (2011). The Genocide Debate: Politicians, Academics, and Victims. Springer. p. 16. ISBN 978-0-230-33763-3. ^ M. Zafar. "How Pakistan Army moved into the Political Arena". Defence Journal. Archived from the original on 29 September 2009. Retrieved 15 March 2009. ^ "Bhutto was father of Pakistan's Atom Bomb Programme". International Institute for Strategic Studies. Archived from the original on 14 March 2012. Retrieved 19 December 2011. ^ a b Pervez Amerali Hoodbhoy (23 January 2011). "Pakistan's nuclear bayonet". The Herald. Archived from the original on 18 February 2011. Retrieved 9 September 2011. ^ Sushil Khanna. "The Crisis in the Pakistan Economy". Revolutionary Democracy. Retrieved 16 November 2011. ^ Michael Heng Siam-Heng; Ten Chin Liew (2010). State and Secularism: Perspectives from Asia. Singapore: World Scientific. p. 202. ISBN 978-981-4282-37-6. Retrieved 28 December 2011. ^ Steve Coll (2004). Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001 (23 February 2004 ed.). Penguin Press HC. p. 720. ISBN 978-1-59420-007-6.
    - Odd Arne Westad (2005). The global Cold War: third world interventions and the making of our times. Cambridge University Press. pp. 348–358. ISBN 978-0-521-85364-4. Retrieved 22 January 2012.
    ^ Haroon, Sana (2008). "The Rise of Deobandi Islam in the North-West Frontier Province and Its Implications in Colonial India and Pakistan 1914–1996". Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society. 18 (1): 66–67. doi:10.1017/S1356186307007778. JSTOR 27755911. S2CID 154959326. ^ Marie Chene. "Overview of corruption in Pakistan". Anti Corruption Resource Centre. Retrieved 23 December 2011.
    - Ishrat Husain (2009). "Pakistan & Afghanistan: Domestic Pressures and Regional Threats: The Role of Politics in Pakistan's Economy". Journal of International Affairs. 63 (1): 1–18.
    ^ Khan, Feroz Hassan (2012). Eating grass: the making of the Pakistani bomb. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press. ISBN 978-0-8047-7600-4. ^ "India launches Kashmir air attack". BBC News. 26 May 1999. Retrieved 5 August 2008. ^ "Pakistan after the coup: Special report". BBC News. 12 October 2000. Retrieved 17 March 2009. ^ "Pakistan Among Top 10 Reformers". World Bank. 12 September 2005. Retrieved 19 November 2016. ^ "Performance of 12th NationalAssembly of Pakistan-" (PDF). Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transperency. p. 5. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 January 2012. Retrieved 23 December 2011. ^ "New Pakistan PM Gillani sworn in". BBC News. 25 March 2008. Retrieved 17 March 2009. ^ "Zardari wins Pakistan presidential election: officials". AFP. 5 September 2008. Archived from the original on 7 July 2009. Retrieved 17 March 2009.
    - Candace Rondeaux (19 August 2008). "Musharraf Exits, but Uncertainty Remains". The Washington Post. Retrieved 19 January 2010.
    - "Pakistani President Musharraf Resigns Amid Impeachment Threats". Fox News. Associated Press. 18 August 2008. Archived from the original on 20 August 2008. Retrieved 18 August 2008.
    ^ "Gilani disqualified as PM: SC". Daily The News Retrieved 19 June 2012. ^ "'War on terror' has cost Pakistan $118bn: SBP". Dawn. Agence France Presse. 19 November 2016. Retrieved 3 April 2017. ^ "Pakistan IDP Figures Analysis". Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre. Archived from the original on 4 April 2017. Retrieved 3 April 2017. ^ "Nawaz Sharif sworn in as Pakistani PM". ABC. 5 June 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2013. ^ "Imran Khan won Pakistan general election, 2018 and became the 22nd Prime Minister of Pakistan". Daily Pakistan. Retrieved 22 August 2018. ^ "Pakistan: Shehbaz Sharif chosen as PM after week-long uncertainty". BBC News. 11 April 2022.
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Stay safe
    Stay safe
    Travel Warning  WARNING: The security situation in Pakistan has improved considerably, but some Western governments still advise against travel to all or part of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province, the city of Peshawar and districts south of the city, all or part of Balochistan Province, the Karakorum Highway and areas within 10-50 km of the borders, and caution against non-essential travel to some other areas, including the city of Karachi....Read more
    Stay safe
    Travel Warning  WARNING: The security situation in Pakistan has improved considerably, but some Western governments still advise against travel to all or part of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province, the city of Peshawar and districts south of the city, all or part of Balochistan Province, the Karakorum Highway and areas within 10-50 km of the borders, and caution against non-essential travel to some other areas, including the city of Karachi. Areas bordering Afghanistan (and in particular, the former FATA) has a high threat of terrorist attack against places that are frequented by foreigners, are more dangerous than other destinations, and are generally considered to be unsafe for travel.
    Government travel advisories
    Australia Canada Ireland New Zealand United Kingdom United States
    (Information last updated 28 May 2021)

    In an emergency, call the police by 15 from any landline phone. To get an ambulance, dial 115 and 1122 from any landline or mobile phone.


    Pakistan has endured several bomb attacks over the last few years against security forces and so called western institutions (e.g. the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad), and has seen the public assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto upon her return from exile. These attacks have decreased significantly since 2014 due to successful military operations against terrorists. For the ordinary traveller, Pakistan has a tradition of hospitality that has been subverted by perceptions of 'Western' unfairness. Social protests tend to turn violent and political demonstrations are always sensitive. Before travelling you should check with your embassy about off-limits areas, the latest political and military developments and keep an close eye on current issues with independent news sources.

    Stay away from military convoys as they are a potential target for suicide bombing. Similarly, going near military or intelligence facilities can be dangerous.

    Carrying firearms can land you in police custody, except if you get a special permit from a relevant authority.

    Sensitive areas

    The line of control between Azad Kashmir and the Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir is off-limits for foreign tourists, though domestic tourists can visit Azad Kashmir without any restriction, but should keep their identity cards with them.

    The former Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) in Northwest Pakistan and all regions near the sensitive Afghan border should not be visited at any time by foreign tourists, as the Pakistan government has little to no authority in these areas and cannot aid you in an emergency. If you do have reason to visit, seek expert guidance, including that of your embassy, who can advise you on the special permissions required.

    Swat Valley landscape

    Balochistan is considered dangerous and not fit for travellers due to increased kidnappings of foreigners.

    The rules regarding sensitive areas and No Objection Certificates (NOCs), Note Verbals and other permissions and paperwork some in officialdom deem necessary for your to travel around the country are ever-changing. The most notorious NOC regulation is for foreigners to enter Kashmir, with the intention being so the security services can keep track (i.e. follow) foreigners to make sure they don't visit places they shouldn't. Outside Kashmir diplomats are the primary user of NOCs and theoretically the normal tourist should be exempt. However those in officialdom can view all foreigners with suspicion and demand an NOC when you step of a plane or out of a bus. NOCs need to be applied for through the Ministry of Interior, however if you are travelling on a non-diplomatic passport you should be fine - but its good to be aware of this nonetheless.

    Be aware of sensitive areas. You may see road signs in English saying 'no foreigners allowed beyond this point', for example on the road to Kahuta near Islamabad. If you see and need to pass one of these signs, at the very least stop at the nearest police station and see if they will let you pass (speaking Urdu is an advantage here), or turn back and find another route. Typically, restricted areas are those with nuclear or military installations nearby. Kahuta, southeast of Islamabad, and the Sakesar hill station near the Amb temples in the Salt Range are two restricted areas the visitor may stumble across. Getting caught in a restricted area will mean a lot of wasted time, embarrassment and arrest.

    Dangerous drivers

    African countries typically top the list of road fatalities per 100,000 motor vehicles, but few countries in Asia are able to beat Pakistan's score in 2010 of 383.

    Pakistan has a high number of fatal traffic collisions and the World Health Organization estimated 30,131 deaths on its roads in 2010.

    Drivers are reckless and scoff at laws and what would be common courtesies in other countries. Their philosophy of "might is right" often leads to horrendous crashes between trucks and trucks & buses.


    Prostitution has no legal recognition in Pakistan.

    Homosexuals should be very cautious in Pakistan, because, as in most Muslim countries, homosexuality remains a crime in Pakistan and punishments can be severe. Under Section 377 of the Pakistan Penal Code, whoever voluntarily has "carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal" shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than two years nor more than ten years, and shall also be liable for a fine. Penetration is sufficient to constitute the carnal intercourse necessary to the offence described in this section. Arrests are not common for homosexuality, as evidenced by a vibrant gay nightlife existing in many metropolitan areas.

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Where can you sleep near Pakistan ?
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