||This article needs more sources for reliability. (October 2010)|
|— Province of Pakistan —|
|Established||1 July 1972|
|• Chief Minister|
|• Legislature||Unicameral (?* seats)|
|• Total||205,344 km2 (79,284 sq mi)|
|Time zone||PST (UTC+05:00)|
|Official languages||Pashto · English|
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, previously called the North-West Frontier Province (Urdu: افغانیہ پاکستان, NWFP) is a province in Pakistan. The capital is Peshawar and it has a population of 14 million people and an area of 28,773 mi² or (74,521 km²). By area the province is greater in area than Sierra Leone but smaller than Panama. The province was created in 1901 during British rule when it was separated from a united Punjab province of the British India Empire.[source?] A referendum was held in the North West Frontier Province on 2 July 1947. The majority of voters wanted to join with Pakistan, with only a very small number voting to join with India. The NWFP became a part of Pakistan, because of this referendum.
The President of Pakistan appoints a Governor as head of the provincial government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. There is a directly-elected Provincial Assembly, which has 124 elected members (including 22 seats reserved for women and 3 seats for non-Muslims). The Provincial Assembly elects a Chief Minister to act as the chief executive of the province, assisted by a cabinet of ministers.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is divided into 25 districts. There are 20 Settled Area Districts and 5 Provincially Administered Tribal Areas (PATA) Districts. The administration of the PATA districts is the responsibility the President of Pakistan and the Governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
|Provincial animal||Kabul Markhor|
|Provincial bird||White-crested Kalij pheasant|
|Provincial tree||Juniperus squamata|
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa sits primarily on the Iranian plateau and comprises the junction where the slopes of the Hindu Kush mountains on the Eurasian plate give way to the Indus-watered hills approaching South-central Asia. This situation has led to seismic activity in the past. The famous Khyber Pass links the province to Afghanistan, while the Kohalla Bridge in Circle Bakote Abbottabad is a major crossing point over the Jhelum River in the east.
The province has an area of 28,773 mi² or (74,521 km²) — comparable in size to New England in North America. The province's main districts are Peshawar, Mardan, Charsadda Dera Ismail Khan, Lakki Marwat, Kohistan, Kohat, Abbottabad, Haripur and Mansehra, Swat, Buner District, Bannu and Karak. Peshawar, Mardan, Kohat, Abbottabad, Dera Ismail Khan and Hangu are the main cities.
The region varies in topography from dry rocky areas in the south to forests and green plains in the north. The climate can be extreme with intensely hot summers to freezing cold winters. Despite these extremes in weather, agriculture remains important and viable in the area.
The hilly terrain of Kalam, Upper Dir, Swat, Naran and Kaghan is renowned for its beauty and attracts a great many tourists from neighboring regions and from around the world. Swat is popular among tourists as the "Switzerland of South Asia" as there are many landscape similarities between it and the mountainous terrain of Switzerland.
According to the 1998 census, the population of the province was approximately 17 million, of whom 52% are males and 48% are females. The density of population is 187 per km² and the intercensal change of population is of about 30%.
Geographically the province could be divided into two zones: the northern one extending from the ranges of the Hindu Kush to the borders of Peshawar basin and the southern one extending from Peshawar to the Derajat basin.
The northern zone is cold and snowy in winters with heavy rainfall and pleasant summers with the exception of Peshawar basin, which is hot in summer and cold in winter. It has moderate rainfall. The southern zone is arid with hot summers and relatively cold winters and scanty rainfall.
The major rivers that criss-cross the province are the Kabul, Swat, Chitral, Kunar, Siran, Panjgora, Bara, Kurram, Dor, Haroo, Gomal and Zhob.
Its snow-capped peaks and lush green valleys of unusual beauty have enormous potential for tourism.
- "The Constitution". Government of Pakistan. http://www.ljcp.gov.pk/Menu%20Items/1973%20Constitution/constitution.htm. Retrieved 2010-04-27.
- "Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (province, Pakistan) :: Geography - Britannica Online Encyclopedia". Britannica.com. http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/419493/Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa/249136/Geography. Retrieved 2010-05-25.
- "District wise area and population of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa". http://www.nwfpbos.sdnpk.org/nwfpds/2000/5.htm.
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