Gujrat District

Gujrat (Punjabi and Urdu: ضِلع گُجرات‎), is a district of Punjab Province in Pakistan.

Gujrat
Gujrat is located in the north of Punjab
Gujrat is located in the north of Punjab
Country Pakistan
ProvincePunjab
DivisionGujranwala Division
HeadquartersGujrat
Government
 • Deputy CommissionerDr. Khurram Shahzad
 • District Police OfficerTauseef Haider
Area
 • Total3,192 km2 (1,232 sq mi)
Population
 (2017)[1]
 • Total2,756,110
 • Density860/km2 (2,200/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+5 (PST)
Number of Tehsils4

It is bounded on the northeast by Mirpur, on the northwest by the River Jhelum, which separates it from Jhelum District, on the east and southeast by the Chenab River, separating it from the districts of Gujranwala and Sialkot, and on the west by Mandi Bahauddin. District Gujrat is spread over an area of 3,192 square kilometres.

HistoryEdit

Ancient historyEdit

According to the British Imperial Gazetteer:

Gujrat town itself is a place of some antiquity, and the district bounds in ancient sites.The region was conquered by Chandragupta Maurya. It remained under the Mauryas for few hundred years until shortly after the death of Ashoka in 231, and about forty years later came under the sway of Demetrius the Graeco-Bactrian. The overthrow of the Bactrians by the Parthians in the latter half of the second century brought another change of rulers, and the coins of the Indo-Parthian Maues (c. 120 B. c.), who is known to local tradition as Raja Moga, have been found at Mong. At the end of the first century A. D., ie whole of the Punjab was conquered by the Yueh-chi. For several hundred years nothing is known of the history of the District, except that between 455 and 540 it must have been exposed to the ravages of the White Huns. Dr. Stein holds that the District formed part of the kingdom of Gurjara, which, according to the Rajatarangini, was invaded between 883 and 902 by Sankara Varman of Kashmir, who defeated its king Alakana.[2]

However the foundation of the capital, Gujrat, according to the Ancient Geography of India:

is ascribed to a king named Bachan Pal of whom nothing more is known; and its restoration is attributed to Alakhana, the Maha Raja of Gurjara, who was defeated by Sangkara Varmma between AD 883 AD 901.[3]

Islamic Rule (Ghaznavid, Ghurid, Delhi, Suri and Mughal Empires)Edit

In 997 CE, Mahmud Ghaznavi, took rule over the Ghaznavid dynasty established by his father Sebuktegin. After defeating the Hindu Shahis, he conquered their kingdom entirely which included the Punjab region of modern day Pakistan.

After defeating the Ghaznavids, the Ghurids succeeded them who were then replaced by the Delhi Sultanate.

The Mughal emperor Akbar established Gujrat as a district along with many others when he began consolidating his rule over his vast empire. Jahangir, Akbars son and successor, in his memoirs records the following information on Gujrat:

At the time when His Majesty Akbar went to Kashmir, a fort had been built on the bank of that river. Having brought to this fort a body of Gujars who had passed their time in the neighbourhood in thieving and highway robbery, he established them here. As it had become the abode of Gujars, he made it a separate pargana, and gave it the name of Gujrat. "[4]

The settlement of the tract was completed by Akbar, who built a fort and compelled the Gujars to settle in it. The tract was then named Gujrat and formed into a separate district. Revenue records have been preserved in the families of the hereditary registrars (kanungos), and these exhibit Gujrat the capital of a district containing 2,592 villages, paying a revenue of 11.6 million. In 1605 the famous Sayyid Abdul Kasim received Gujrat as a fief from Akbar.

After Aurangzebs death in 1707, Mughal power declined. Nadir Shah occupied the district of Gujrat during his invasion of the Mughal Empire in 1739. Shortly afterwards in 1741, the city was captured by Punjabi Gakhar tribesmen from near the Rawalpindi area.

The district and Punjab as a whole was devastated even further from the invasions and raids of the Durrani Afghans (Pashtuns) between 1747 and 1772 under their newly appointed ruler Ahmad Shah Durrani who frequently crossed and recrossed the area for plunder and battling the newly emerged Sikh Misls for control of the region following the power vacuum left by the Mughals.[2]

Sikh and British eraEdit

By 1765, the Sikhs had eventually won out against the Durranis for control in the area of Gujrat when the Sikh Bhangi Misl under Gujjar Singh overran the area defeating the local Punjabi Ghakhars under Muqqarab Khan. The Sikhs defeated an invasion of an Afghan force for Gujrat on 29 April 1797.

In 1798, the Bhangi leader Sahib Singh pledged allegiance to the Sukerchakia Misl of Ranjit Singh. By 1810, Ranjit Singh's armies captured the city from Bhangi forces, thereby extending the rule of the Sikh Empire to the city.

The Sikh empire declined following Ranjit Singh’s death in 1839. The British East Indian Company defeated the Sikhs between 1845-1846 during the First Anglo-Sikh War reducing their power significantly. Two years later, the empire collapsed after the British EIC again decisively defeated the Sikhs at the Battle of Gujrat thus ending the Second Anglo-Sikh War. The Sikh empire was entirely annexed and incorporated into the rule of the British EIC.[2]

Language and demographyEdit

According to 2017 census the population of the district has reached to 2,756,110 of which 1,335,339 are males and 1,420,628 are females. This census shows that 1,928,714 persons live in rural while 827,396 live in urban areas. It is further reported that there are 143 transgenders.[5]

The predominant language of the district is Punjabi, which according to the 1998 census is the first language[6] of 98% of the population, while Urdu accounts for 1.1%.[7]

AdministrationEdit

The district is administratively subdivided into three tehsils, these are:

  1. Gujrat
  2. Kharian
  3. Sarai Alamgir

EducationEdit

District Gujrat has a total of 1,475 government schools at primary and secondary level.[8] Out of these public schools, 60 percent (889 schools) are for girls. According to the latest available data, 323,058 students are enrolled in the public schools while 10,581 teachers are working in these schools.

Notable peopleEdit

PoliticiansEdit

ScholarsEdit

MilitaryEdit

PoetsEdit

SportEdit

Actors/ActressesEdit

MusiciansEdit

OtherEdit

  • The family of UK-born Shafilea Ahmed, an honour killing victim, originated from Uttam.[9]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "DISTRICT WISE CENSUS RESULTS CENSUS 2017" (PDF). www.pbscensus.gov.pk. Archived from the original (PDF) on 29 August 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 12, p. 366
  3. ^ The Ancient Geography of India, page 151, Alexander Cunningham
  4. ^ The Memoirs of Jahangueir (Rogers), Volume 1, chpt. 23
  5. ^ [1] Archived 2006-05-13 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Mother tongue", defined as the language of communication between parents and children.
  7. ^ 1998 District Census report of Gujrat. Census publication. 101. Islamabad: Population Census Organization, Statistics Division, Government of Pakistan. 2000. pp. 29–30.
  8. ^ "Punjab Annual Schools Census Data 2014-15". Archived from the original on 19 August 2016. Retrieved 19 August 2016.
  9. ^ Crilly, Rob (3 August 2012). "The Pakistan village where Shafilea drank bleach to avoid an arranged marriage". The Telegraph. Retrieved 26 December 2019.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 32°35′N 73°45′E / 32.583°N 73.750°E / 32.583; 73.750