Ghizer District (1974–2019)

The Ghizer District (Urdu: ضلع غذر), formed in 1974, is the westernmost part of the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan. Currently,[when?] it is proposed to split Ghizer District into two (2) districts:

  1. The western part of Ghizer District includes the actual Ghizer/ Gherz Valley of Phander, Gupis and Yasin. The name as Ghizer District will be kept with this region due to the connectivity to its origin.
  2. While the eastern part of the current District will include Puniyal and Ishkoman. And probably the newly district would be given the name as Puniyal-Ishkoman District.
Ghizer District
Former subdivision of Pakistan
Pakistan - Gilgit-Baltistan - Ghizer.svg
Location in Gilgit-Baltistan
 • TypeDistrict
• Formation
Today part ofProposed split into two, western part as the actual Ghizer District. And the newly District as the Puniyal-Ishkoman District.
Tehsils of the Ghizer District
Phandar Valley

The current district has Gahkuch as its capital. Ghizer was a crossroads between Gilgit and Chitral via Shandur Pass, and also to China and Tajikistan via the Broghil Pass through Ishkomen Valley. Ghizer was a multi-ethnic district and three major languages were spoken: Shina, Khowar, and Burushaski. There were also Wakhi speakers in Ishkoman and some Tajiks.

The word Ghizer came from the name "Gherz" which means "refugees" in Khowar. "Gherz" is a village in Golaghmuli Valley, which is now known as Golaghmuli. The Chitral in the Suzerainty of the British Raj forced some people to migrate towards Gupis, Yasin, Phander Ishkomen and also to Punial. They were settled in the area between Chitral and Gupis and the area called Gherz and the people were called Gherzic. When Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto the President of Pakistan abolished the Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR) system and gave another administrative district comprising the Tehsils (Political districts) the name Ghizer was given and agreed on unanimously. The then Resident and Commissioner for Gilgit and Baltistan, Ijlal Husain [ An Officer of the now defunct Civil Service of Pakistan - CSP] played an important role in creating this administrative division in 1974–75.[1]

Ghizer District comprised Punial, Gupis, Yasen, Phander and Ishkoman Valleys. The major portion of its area was ruled over by Brooshay Rajas known as Raja Sha Burush, Khan Bahadur Issa Bahadur Akber Khan, Raja Anwar Khan, Raja Mirbaz Khan and last Broosh families Raja Jan Alam and Raja Muzafer (who was living in Golodass, also known as Anwerabad as its second name). In 1885 new rulers from Altit arrived to rule the vast territories of Ghizer valley they were from the Aqa Shah Dynasty. 6 generation of rulers from this family have been rulling the state the and in context it helped to spread the Ismaili Faith into the vast territories of Ghizer District. In 1900's the territories of Ishkoman, Punial, Kuh, Yasin and Ghizer came under their rule until 1974 when FCR system was amended. Currently, the living Raja families in the District are living in Ayshi Bala but they have no administrative function but act as a leading role in the development of society. Their linkage goes back to Sha Burush. Sha Burush, Sha Katur, and Sha Khushwaqt are three brothers except the Aqa Shah's, they are from other linkage, mainly From Hunzukutz.

Historically two main characteristics of the folk dress of Ghizer is the Khoi and the Shokah. The khoi is headgear made of homespun woolen cloths, while the shokah is a homespun woolen cloak reaching to the ankle with long sleeves. The region typically known for its lakes and landscapes.


Bridge over the Ghizer River

Historically, the region was ruled by ethnic Kho Rajas (Katoor, Brushay, Shins) indigenous to the region. They all led tribes that were considered brothers, however, some Balti Mehtars had also governed for a period in Mehraja's period. The Yashkuns also ruled for the long period which first led by Mehrban Shah up to 7th sterns. The longest period of rule was by Katur Dynasty; later it was divided between the Mehtar of Chitral and the Maharaja of Kashmir. After 1895 all of Ghizer was annexed to Gilgit Agency, which was directly ruled by the British government, not the Kashmiri people. The whole region was under Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR) from 1947 to 1972.

Tehsil Gupis is the central part of Ghizer district. There are many villages and lush green places, such as Shandur, Phander Lake, and Khalti Lake. The largest lake, Khalti, is famous for its trout. There are PTDC hotels available and also some private hotels in Ghahkuch.

The Seling Valley


Ghizer district was the northernmost part of the Northern Areas and hence the extreme north of the country. It borders the Wakhan strip of Afghanistan on its north-west, and China on its northern borders. On its west was the Chitral District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa; and on its east the Gilgit District. Diamer District is on its south, which is again a part of the northern areas. Gakuch was the capital of Ghizer District.

Gupis has been serving as a junction between Yasin and Phander valley. It is the central place from all valleys like Phandar, Yasin, Poniyal, etc. The valley is located between the world's greatest mountain ranges, namely the Hindu Kush and Karakarum.

The highest peak Ghizer District is Koyo Zom (6,871 m) (Hindu Kush Range), which lies on the boundary between Ghizer District and Chitral.

Some of the main places in the district are Koh-i-Ghizer, Golaghmuli Valley, Ishkoman and Yasin valleys. Other places include Gupis, Chatorkhand, Imit, Pingal, Shahmaran and Utz.


Some of the passes in the district are:


Ghizer River
Phander Valley

The main river in the district is the Ghizer River, which is formed from the Gupis and Ishkoman Rivers; both meet at Hatoon valley with Hayim as the point of confluence. The other tributaries include the Qurumbar River, Phakora River, Hayal River, Singul River and Yasin River, Phander river tributary which also joins the mainstream at different points. The biggest nala in the region is singal nala in the terms of area, which connects the punial valley to the Diamer district.[clarification needed]


Khalti Lake in the Ghizer District, Gilgit


Tehsil map of Gilgit-Baltistan
Bubur Bridge connects Gulmuti to Bubur Valley.
Statue of horse at Gahkuch
Hatun Valley

Colleges and schoolsEdit

  • Karakorum International University sub campus Ghizer
  • Government Model High School Gahkuch.
  • Aga khan Diamond Jubblie Model Higher Secondary School Singal, Punial.
  • Government Boys High school Gupis
  • Professional Science & Arts Academic school Gupis
  • Government High School Golaghmuli Phander
  • Government high school Gullapur.
  • Aga Khan Higher Secondary School Gahkuch, Ghizer
  • Elysian Higher Secondary School Gahkuch Ghizer.
  • Iqra huffaz secondary school Gahkuch
  • Aga Khan Schools
  • Aga Khan Higher Secondary School Sherqilla, Ghizer
  • Hatun Degree College
  • LRS Thingai Ghizer
  • MIED College Phander
  • World Roof Public School And College Hundur Yasin
  • Inter College Gupis
  • FG Boys High School Phander
  • Govt Degree College Tause Yasin
  • LRS Phander Ghizer
  • Ghizer Public School Gahkuch
  • Diamond Jubilee High School Gupis, Ghizer
  • Lalik Jan Shaheed (NH) Army Public School and College Hundur Yasin
  • Iqra huffaz secondary school Yasu
  • Diamond Jubilee Learning Resource High School Sandi Yasin
  • Begal Academy Thoi Yasin
  • Diamond Jubilee High School Thoi Yasin


According to the Alif Ailaan Pakistan District Education Rankings 2015, Ghizer was ranked 10 out of 148 districts in terms of education. For facilities and infrastructure, the district was ranked 17 out of 148.The biggest contribution in the region in education is "Aga Khan Education Service Pakistan"(AKESP).[2]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Archived 2013-12-17 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ "Individual district profile link, 2015". Alif Ailaan. Archived from the original on 2015-11-17. Retrieved 2015-05-07.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 36°10′00″N 73°45′00″E / 36.1667°N 73.7500°E / 36.1667; 73.7500