Pakistan has a total area of 803,940 square kilometers, slightly greater than France and the United Kingdom put together. Pakistan is located in South Asia. To the south is the Arabian Sea, with 1,046 km of Pakistani coastline. To Pakistan’s east is India, which has a 2,912 km border with Pakistan. To its west is Iran, which has a 909 km border with Pakistan. To Pakistan’s northwest lies Afghanistan, with a shared border of 2,430 km. China is towards the northeast and has a 523 km border with Pakistan.
The main waterway of Pakistan is the Indus River that begins in China, and runs nearly the entire length of Pakistan, flowing through all of Pakistan’s provinces except Balochistan. is fed by the combined waters of three of the five rivers of Punjab the Chenab, Jhelum, and Ravi. The waters of the other two rivers, the Beas and the Sutlej, are largely withdrawn for irrigation in India. Along the Indus and its tributaries are found most of Pakistan’s population, its chief agricultural areas, and its major hydroelectric power stations, interconnected by the world’s largest system of agricultural canals, join the Indus before it discharges into the Arabian Sea.
The northern and western areas of Pakistan are mountainous. Pakistani administered areas of Kashmir contain some of the highest mountains in the world, including the second tallest, K-2. Northern Pakistan tends to receive more rainfall than the southern parts of the country, and has some areas of preserved moist temperate forest. In the southeast, Pakistan’s border with India passes through a flat desert, called the Cholistan or Thal Desert. West-central Balochistan has a high desert plateau, bordered by low mountain ranges. Most of the Punjab, and parts of Sindh, are fertile plains where agriculture is of great importance.
Arts & Culture
Pakistan has every reason to be proud of the thousands of years old and rich tradition of its arts and crafts. In the post-independence period, the successive governments have been providing substantial state help and initiative for the uplift of arts and crafts in the country. A wider recognition of the accomplishments of crafts-people has been facilitated by the activities of the National Crafts Council and promotional plans of organizations such as the Export Promotion Bureau and Small Industries Corporations. Pakistani craftsmen are well reputed in producing quality products in clay, stone, fabrics, carpets, wood, metal, jewelry and leather.
Pakistan has been the cradle of a civilization that dates back more than five millennium. Over the centuries, through successive waves of migrations from the north-west, as well as by internal migrations across the subcontinent, Aryans, Persians, Greeks, Arabs, and Mughals came and settled in this region. However, it was Islam and Islamic traditions that finally took roots and formed the mainspring of Pakistan’s cultural heritage.
Muslims from the earliest days, built cities, forts, palaces, mosques, madrassas (religious schools), tombs and mausoleums which are marked by simplicity and grandeur, with open spaces and abundance of light in accordance with the Islamic concept of man’s direct and open relationship with the Creator. Pakistan inherits immense treasure of culture, and the government is trying its best to preserve and promote this cultural treasure. There are several government agencies such as Pakistan National Council of Arts, Lok Virsa (Folk Heritage), National Film Development Corporation, Authority for Preservation of Moenjodaro and National Archives of Pakistan, each to perform a given set of functions in this area.