Wednesday, August 22, 2007

For other places called Islamabad, see Islamabad (disambiguation).
Islamabad  (Urdu: اسلام آباد) is the capital city of Pakistan, and is located in the Potohar Plateau in the northwest of the country. It is located within the Islamabad Capital Territory, the area has historically been a part of the crossroads of the Rawalpindi and the North-West Frontier Province (the Margalla pass being a historic gateway to the North-West Frontier Province. Islamabad is located at 33°40′N, 73°10′E.
The city was built during the 1960s to replace Karachi as Pakistan's capital. A Greek firm of architects, Doxiadis Associates, drew up a master plan, triangular in shape based on a grid system with its apex towards the Margalla Hills. Rawalpindi is considered its sister city due to the close proximity of the two cities.
This city was built for several reasons: The development of the country was focused on Karachi and President Ayub Khan wanted it to be equally distributed; Karachi was vulnerable to attack from the sea in an event of a war with India; and Islamabad by contrast is safely surrounded by the mountains. The climate in Islamabad is favourable compared to Karachi with lower average temperatures throughout the year. It was also closer to the GHQ which was, and still is in Rawalpindi.
Islamabad is a rather modern and clean city, especially in comparison to other cities in Pakistan. It is well-organized, with the city being divided into different sectors and zones. Islamabad was divided into eight zones: the diplomatic enclave, the commercial district, the educational sector, the industrial area and so on, each with its own shopping area and park. Islamabad is also home to the Faisal Mosque which is well known for its architecture and immense size. The mosque was gifted by King Faisal of Saudi Arabia.
There is no proper District Government setup in ICT but efforts are being made towards the establishment of a local Government system in the ICT, which is still not in place in ICT as local government systems exist in other parts of the country. In 2005, the Ministry of Interior divided the ICT into 40 union councils — 20 union councils in rural/urban areas of the ICT. However, the Union Council system is yet to be implemented. The 20 union councils each cover the following regions of the ICT (the name in brackets refers to each council's jurisdiction, named after a main town in the area covered by each council, e.g. Rewat or Tarnol):
Union Council No. 1 (Rewat): Rewat, Bhangreel Kalan, Bhangreel Khurd, Kortara, Takht Pari, Shadi Dhamial, Mohra Amir, Sood Gangal, Mohri Khumbal, Sheikhpur, Hoon Dhamial, Chuchkal and Bhima Kanait.
Union Council No. 2 (Humak): Humak, Kotha Kalan and Naizian
Union Council No. 3 (Sihala): Sihala, Gagri, Mughal, Chak Kamidar, Nara Sayedan, Sandu, Chitroh, Herdogher, Jabi Gakhran, Ladhiot, Kangota, Sayedan, Jandala and Kangota Gujran.
Union Council No. 4 (Koral): Koral, Lohi Bher, Choocha, Rakh Lohi Bher, Pagh, Panwal, Bora Bangial, Bukher, Khathreel, Dhaliala, Pind Dia, Paija, Darwala, Sher Dhamial, Pindi Malkan, Pindori Hathial, Pindori Sayedan, Bhimber Trar, Gohra Mast, Sigga, Channi Mahsu and Khan.
Union Council No. 5 (Khana): Khana Dak, Gangal, Gandhian, Tarlai Khurd and Sodhar.
Union Council No. 6 (Tarlai Kalan): Tarlai Kalan, Chaper Mir-Khanal, Tramri, Tamma, Gohra Sardar, Chatha Bakhtawar and Khardapur.
Union Council No. 7 (Kirpa): Kirpa, Jhang Sayedan, Partal, Saknal, Panjgran, Frash and Ali Pur.
Union Council No. 8 (Cherah): Cherah, Herno Thanda Pani and Ara.
Union Council No. 9 (Tumair): Tumair, Kijnah, Sihali, New Simbli, Jandala, Jandgran, Garathian, Darkalai, Rakh Tumair A, Rakh Tumair B, Dakhian and Pind Begwal.
Union Council No. 10 (Phulgran): Phulgran, Shahpur, Sakrila, Dohala, Bbbri Betha, Athal, Maira Begwal, Chattar, Karlot, Hotran, Kathar, Mangal, Chaniari, Rakh Maira A & B and Malot.
Union Council No. 11 (Bhara Kau): Kot Hathial.
Union Council No.12 (Malpur); Malpur, Shahdara (Malpur Rural), Jhang Bangial, Mandla, Subban, Mangial, Quaid-e-Azam University and Muslim Colony.
Union Council No 13 (Noorpur Shahan): Noor Pur Shahan, Ratta Hoter, Talhar, Gokina and Saidpur.
Union Council No. 14 (Kuri at Chak Shehzad): Kuri, Rehara, Chak Shahzad, Majuhan, Mohrian, Gohra Baz, Mohra Jijan, Jagiot and Nogazi.
Union Council No. 15 (Rawal Town): Mohra Noor, Rawal Tonw, Rawal Colony, Mochi Mohra, Sumbal Korak (Katchi Abadi) and Sumbal Korak.
Union Council No. 16 (Sohan): Sohan, Kana Kak, Jaba Taili, Shakrial, Pindori, Sihana, Lakhwal, Chak Bera Sing, Kartal, Bohan, Dhoke Sharaf, Ojri Kalan & Khurd and Poona Faqiran.
Union Council No. 17 (Golra): Golra, Maira Bairi, Baker Akku, Dharek Mori, Maira Sumbal Aku, Maira Sumbal Jafer, Dharmian (F-11), E-10 (Sihala), Badia Rustam and Khan.
Union Council No. 18 (Shah Allah Ditta): Shah Allah Ditta, Seri Seral, Pind Sangral, Sara-e-Kharbooza, Johd, Siray Madhu, Bara Dari, Bakhar Fateh and Bakhsh.
Union Council No. 19 (Jhangi Sayeda): Jhangi Sayedan, Nothia, Thala Sayedan and Chailo, Sheikhpur, Kak, Noon, Narala and Bokra.
Union Council No. 20 (Tarnol): Bhadana Kalan, Tarnol, Pindi Parian, Naugazi, Dorey, Ahi Paswal, Sangjani and Bhadana Khurd.

The city is situated at the edge of the Pothohar plateau, south of the Margalla hills. The modern capital Islamabad and the ancient Gakhar city of Rawalpindi stand side by side, displaying the country's past and present. The area's micro-climate is regulated by three man-made lakes (Rawal, Simli and Khanpur). The city overall has an extreme climate with hot summers with monsoon rains occurring during July and August, and fairly cold winters with sparse snowfall over the hills and sleet in the city. The weather ranges from a minimum of -4 °C in January to a maximum of 45 °C in June.
The modern city of Islamabad was envisaged as the new capital of Pakistan in the 1960s. In the mid 1960's the capital was shifted from Karachi to Islamabad, with most of the Government machinery shifting to Islamabad, along with the foreign embassies, though off-shoots of some of these remain even today in Karachi. The city was built as a planned city and has been divided into various sectors on a "grid" whereby on one axis run the numbers and the other axis sees the city in alphabets.

Geography and climate
Islamabad is rich in natural animal wildlife ranging from wild boars to leopards that dwell in the Margala Hills. Islamabad also has a sizeable population of feral dogs and cats.

Islamabad, Pakistan Flora and Fauna
Islamabad is a relatively young city compared to the other cities. However, the views from the sculpted gardens of Islamabad's Shakar Parian Hills, National Monument, the fascinating Heritage Museum, and the huge marble Shah Faisal Mosque are the major highlights of the city. To the west of Islamabad is the town of Taxila, dating from 500 BC with heavy Buddhist and Sikh (home to a shrine, among the most important in the Sikh faith) influences. Sculptures here show a strong Greek influence, a result of Alexander the Great's journey through the region. The commercial center of Islamabad is known as the Blue Area and runs along the length of Jinnah Avenue. Its eastern end runs into Parliament Road, where the majority of the country's government buildings are located.
The city is very green, with much afforestation of what was formerly scrub forest and open ground. The city's pleasant climate has enabled the introduction of many exotic plants to the area. There is also much wildlife in the north in the Margalla hills, which have been turned into a national park. The Margalla hills are home to various species of wild life including a variety of exotic birds and carnivores such as the rare and presently endangered Margalla leopards.
Islamabad's architecture walks a tight-rope between modernity and tradition. The Saudi-Pak Tower is a good example of the combination of modern and traditional styles into one building. The city is also home to the Faisal Mosque, which is well-known for its architecture and immense size. Quaid-i-Azam University is also located in the capital city along with numerous government buildings and foreign embassies such as the National Assembly building, the Supreme Court building, the President's official residence (Aiwan-e-Sadr) and the Prime Minister's secretariat. Another landmark is a giant silver-colored Globe statue, installed in 2004 to mark Pakistan's hosting of that year's SAARC Summit. Recently, Atkins UK have designed a striking building for the capital, the Centaurus, reflecting the margalla hills surrounding it. Not only will this be the tallest and most impressive structure in Islamabad, second only to proposed taller skyscrapers in Karachi and Lahore, but will also truly put Pakistan's beautiful capital city on the global architectural map.


  • National Monument Islamabad
    Murree Hills
    Margalla Hills
    Shakar Parrian
    Islamabad Zoo
    Rawal Lake
    Simli dam lake
    Khanpur dam lake
    Anchorage, Islamabad

    • Pakistan Museum of Natural History
      Islamabad Museum
      Lok Virsa Museum
      Pakistan Army Museum(Rawalpindi)
      Museum of Pakistan
      Taxila Museum
      Mosques and Shrines

      • Shah Faisal Mosque
        Golra Sharif
        Lal Masjid
        Bari Imaam
        Panja Sahib (Hasan Abdal)
        Government Buildings

        • Supreme Court of Pakistan
          National Parliament of Pakistan
          President's official residence (Aiwan-e-Sadr)
          Prime Minister's Secretariat
          National Institute of Health (NIH)

          • Fatima Jinnah Park
            Rose and Jasmine Garden
            Japanese Park
            Chattar Bagh
            Auyb National Park, Rawalpindi
            Shakar Padiyan
            Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission Headquarter
            Main Markets

            • Jinnah Super Market
              Karachi Company/G-9 Markaz
              Super Market
              Sitara Market
              Blue Area
              Peshawar Moore
              G-10 Markaz
              G-11 Markaz
              F-8 Markaz
              F-10 Markaz
              F-11 Markaz
              G-8 Markaz
              I-8 Markaz
              I-9 Markaz
              I-10 Markaz
              I-11 Markaz

              • Marriott Hotel
                Holiday Inn Hotel
                Serena Hotel
                Pearl Continental Hotel
                Centaurus Hotel (Under construction)
                Grand Hyatt(Underconstruction)(2009)
                Le Meridian(2009)
                Best Western Hotel
                Avari Hotels Islamabad(2008)
                Sporting facilities

                • Jinnah Sports Complex
                  Liaquat Gymnasium
                  Para Gliding at Margalla hills
                  Margalla cricket Ground
                  Rawalpindi cricket stadium
                  Islamabad club golf course
                  Yachting facility at Rawal lake
                  Islamabad club tennis courts
                  Mushaf Squash Complex - The Mushaf Squash Complex is a state of the art facility which boasts to be the best squash-playing arena in Asia. It was inaugurated on June 29, 2004 by Kaleem Saadat, President of the Pakistan Squash Federation. It comprises a four-sided glass wall court and 4 Combi courts, imported from Messers ASB Courts, Germany. These courts are convertible into Doubles Court. The complex has a seating capacity of 800+ people and is fitted with one of the best air conditioning systems in the country. Tourism and sightseeing
                  Punjabis account for 65% of the population followed by the Muhajir Urdu at around 10%, Pashtun at 10% and others (Sindhi, Balochi, Kashmiri's, etc) at 15%. [2]

                  East: Kotli Sattian/Muree North East: Muree / Kahuta North West: Taxila / Wah Cantt / Attock District South East: Gujar Khan / Kallar Syedian / Rawat / Mandra South West: Rawalpindi West: NWFP
                  The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has intended to carry out a feasibility and reference design for a rapid mass transit system for the twin-cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi. On April 5, 2007, Federal Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said that a railway station would be built near the planned Islamabad Airport at Fateh Jang to facilitate passengers.

                  Islamabad is divided into several different sectors, each identified by a letter of the Roman alphabet and a number, with each sector covering an area of approximately 2 km x 2 km. Each sector is further divided into 4 sub-sectors. The sectors currently in use are lettered from D to I.
                  Currently, there is only one D sector, D-12. Although this sector is underdeveloped with its development to be completed in 2008, it will be considered as one of the most beautiful sectors of Islamabad because of its location near the Margalla Hills. However, in the revised Master Plan, CDA has decided to develop new sectors including D-13 and D-14.
                  The E sectors are numbered from E-6 to E-18. Many foreigners and diplomatic personnel are housed in this sector. But with new revised Master Plan, CDA has decided to develop a park on the patterns of F-9 park in sector E-14. Sector E-8 and E-9 contain the campuses of three Defense universities Bahria University (Sector E-8), Air University (Sector E-9) and National Defence College (now National Defence University).
                  The F sectors are numbered F-5 through F-12. F-5 is an important sector for the software industry in Islamabad, as both of the two software technology parks are located here. The entire sector of F-9 is dedicated for the Fatima Jinnah Park. The Centaurus complex (including a 7 star plaza, 5 star hotel and apartments) will be one of the major landmarks of F-8.
                  The G sectors are numbered G-5 through G-16. Some important landmarks include the Convention Center, SS-CARE and Serena Hotel in G-5, the Lal Mosque in G-6, the Karachi Company shopping center in G-9 (named after a construction company from Karachi who made one of the first flats in this area in and around 1978) and the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) hospital in G-8 which is the largest medical complex in the capital and is hence also known by the locals as simply the 'Complex Hospital.' The Institute is a national centre of excellence and tertiary referral centre. With its own helipad it was the focal point of rescue missions and the point of referral for the most seriously wounded in the Northern Areas earthquake of 2005. The H sectors are numbered H-7 through H-12. The H sectors are mostly dedicated to educational and health institutions. Shifa International Hospitals Ltd. and the Shifa College of Medicine are situated in sector H-8/4. Sectors H-8, H-9, H-10 and H-11 contain the campuses of a number of top universities and Institutes of the country, including Institute of Cost & Management Accountants of Pakistan[3], COMSATS Institute of Information Technology[4], Allama Iqbal Open University, The Roots School System (, City School, and Beacon House School in sector H-8; the National University of Modern Languages (NUML) and International School of Islamabad in sector H-9; the International Islamic University in sector H-10; the National University of Computer and Emerging Sciences (FAST-NUCES) in sector H-10; and the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) in H-12.
                  The I sectors are numbered I-8 through I-18. Except for I-8, these sectors are primarily set aside as part of the industrial zone. Only Two sub-sectors of Sector I-9 and one sub-sector of sector I-10 is used as Industrial Area. Sector I-11 is proposed site of a state-of-art Vegetable and Fruit Market. CDA has planned to relocate the operating Veg. and Fruit market from I-11 to Sangjani. Sector I-15 is a new sector for Low-income group. CDA is planning to set up Islamabad Railway Station in Sector I-18 and Industrial City in proposed sector I-17.

                  Sister Cities

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