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Bhakkar

Bhakkar is a District in the Punjab province of Pakistan. The district was created in 1981 with Bhakkar city (known as Bakhar in Seraiki) as the capital. It is located between 31° 10' and 32° 22' N. and 70° 47' and 72° E. with an area of 3,134 square miles (8,120 km2), most of it lies in the desolate plain of the Thal, but the Kachhi or strip of riverine land along the Indus is of great fertility. Its area consists of riverine tract along the Indus called Kacha and the Thal historically called Chol-e-Jalali. Most of its area comprises greater Thal. Mankera in centre of The Great Thal is a place of great antiquity. The old fort here; a historical heritage, is a great land mark of Thal needs preservation. Another old place in the district is Kallurkot. Bakhar is part of Seraiki Wasaib in western Punjab.

Towns

The main towns of District Bhakkar are:

* Darya Khan
* Mankera
* Dullewala

Etymology

The original name of Bakhar was Sakhar. Bakhar is an old city, and said to be named after great Baloch Sardar Bakhar Khan. There are some other places named Bakhar, which means town of sun-baked bricks. Some people state his name as Bhake Khan Baloch, which is not correct as Bhake Khan is not a Baloch name.

History:

The town has some historical places like Dilkusha Bagh which is believed to be a Mughal era garden and is attached to Humayun; but historical facts do not verify it. Humayun never came here. On his retreat to Iran, he went to another Bakhar in Sindh to seek help from Mahmood Khan, which was however denied by Major Henry Raverty.

The old town was walled and had gates as Tavela gate and Imamanwala gate. The only remaining gate Jinnah Gate (formerly King Gate) was built in British period in the name of Mr. King the then Deputy Commissioner. There are remains of a handera (tomb) near Sheikh Raoo bridge, which is believed to be burial place of Bakhar Khan, the founder of the city. The present police station was originally a Baloch fortress. Some 30 years ago a branch of River Indus flowed past the town. West side of the town was green and pleasant. This is a very scarce silver coin belonging to the reign of Nadir Shah 1148-1160 AH (AD1735-1747) from the Afsharid dynasty, it is an Indian type minted during his occupation of the area. It is listed by type as Album #2744.2 (Type D). It weighs 11.3 gr. (18 mm.) and minted in the city of Bhakkar in the state of Punjab in India, dated 1157AH.

British rule

During British rule, the district was a tehsil of Mianwali District, the population according to the 1891 census of India was 119,219 which had risen to 125,803 at the 1901 census. In addition to the headquarters Bhakkar (population, 5,312), the tehsil contained and 196 villages. The land revenue and cesses amounted in 1903-4 to Rs 1.7 lakhs. Places of interest are Mankera and Muhammad Rajan, at the latter of which is the shrine of Pir Muhammad Rajan, who died there on a pilgrimage.


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