The Mardan district is part
of the Peshawar valley. The total area of this district is 1632 square kilometers.
Topography and Climate
Mardan district is hilly
in the northeast, while the southwestern half is a fertile plain. Generally
streams flow from north to the south. Most of the streams drain into the Kabul
river. The summer season is extremely hot. During May and June dust storms are
frequent during the night. Most of the rainfall occurs in the months of July,
August, December, and January.
Flora and Fauna
Common trees in this area
are mesquite, ber (zizyphus mauritiana), and different species of acacia and
jand (prosopis cineraria). The most common shrubs are tarmariax, articulate,
spands, akk, small red poppy, spera, pueghambrigul, drab grass , eamelthorl,
and pohli chaulai. Animals in the district include the leopard, leopard cat,
black bear, brown monkey, jackal, wild goat, and pheasant.
Mardran is widely considered
the best agricultural area in all of Pakistan. The land is very suitable for
cultivation of sugar cane and tobacco. The major crops in the district are wheat,
sugar cane, tobacco, maize, rice, rape seed, and mustard seed. Fruits and vegetables
are also grown. Irrigation is mostly through canals. Tube wells and lift irrigation
is also used.
In Mardan, a lot of industrial
activity exists around the production of sugar and manufacturing of cigarettes.
Other industries, as recorded in 1997-1998, were match, furniture, marble, flour
mills, steal industries, aluminum goods, and handy crafts.
The area constituting Mardan
district is a part of the Peshawar Valley. The Seythians and Indians followed
and retained control of the valley untill the 7th century A.D. Before the close
of the 7th century, the Afghans had appeared in the valley. By the tenth century,
the area had come under their control, with Sultan Sabuktgin. His son, Mahmud
Ghazni used the area as a rallying point for moving into India. In the 15th
century, the Pathans of Gohor defeated the Gaznavis. In 1505, the Mughal emperor
Babur invaded the area through the Khaybar Pass. The area remained under the
rule of the Mughal emperors until the time of Aurangzeb, during which the Pathan
tribes revolted, and after much fighting, Aurangzeb signed a treaty to let them
be practically independent. In 1738, all of the region was ceded by the Mughals
to Nadir Shah.
In 1814, the area was conqured
by Ranjit Singh, and remained under the control of the Sikhs until 1849, at
which time the British conquered them and the area became under control of the
Panjab Government. In 1909, the Frontier Province was constituted, and in 1937,
Peshawar district was divided into Peshawar and Mardan districts.
Ethnicity and Tribes
In the Mardan district,
most of the people are Phatans. The main tribe is Yusafzai Pathans but there
is also a large Khattak population. The area is also known as the "Yusafzai
Plain." The Khattaks and the Yusafzai were in a state of perpetual war
with each other before the reign of emperor Aurangzeb, during which time, the
two tribes made peace.
Population Size and Growth
The population of Mardan
district has increased about four time since 1951. According to 1998 census
it is 1460 thousand as compared to 357 thousand in 1951. The percentage increased
since 1951 is therefore comes to 3.09 percent. In 1961 the population was 481
thousand. In 1972 it was 697 thousand and in 1981 it was 1460. Thus, during
each of the periods between censuses. The average household size of the district
is 8.4 persons according to 1998 census which was 6.5 persons in 1981.
99.51 percent of the population
in the district is Muslim. The main minorities are Qadiani/Ahmadi (0.32 percent)
and Christian (0.14 percent). The other minority is Hindu, which makes up 0.02
percent of the entire population.
Pashto is the most common
mother tongue of the population of the district as reported by 98.44 percent.
Urdu, Punjabi, Sindi, Balochi, and Saraiki are the other reported mother tounges.
The literacy ration of the
district among the population aged 10 years and above is 36.45 percent. It has
increased by 20.50 percentage points since 1981 when it was only 15.95 percent.
The male literacy ratio is much higher at 53.50 percent compared to 18.38 percent
for female. During the 1980s and 90s the literacy rates for both males and females
increased dramatically; in the 1981 census, 26.08 percent of males could read,
and only 5.10 percent of females.
In 1998, 79.07 percent of
people in the district were vaccinated. The question about immunization was
included in the 1908 census for the first time to evaluate the vaccination program
launched by the Government from time to time. It is encouraging to note 79.07
percent of the children under 10 years age have reported as vaccinated, while
4.62 percent reported as not vaccinated leaving the rest i.e. 16.31 reported
as not known.
Source of Drinking Water
78.75 percent of the housing
units in the district have a drinking water facility inside the house. And 21.25
percent of the housing units have a facility outside the house. Water from wells
is the most common source, followed by water from pipes, and then water from
hand pumps. A small percentage of people also used water from ponds.
Date/Time Last Modified: 6/17/2002 4:34:41 PM
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