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Dera Ismail Khan (Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa)


Dera Ismail Khan, also known as D. I. Khan, is situated on the right bank of the Indus River at the junction of the Gomal River. It is a borderline between Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa and Punjab and is located at the distance of 300 km from Peshawar city on Indus Highway N-55 via Kohat and Bannu.

Dera Ismail Khan has its boundaries with Lakki Marwat, Tank, South Waziristan, Bhakkar, and Dera Ghazi Khan districts. Indus Highway is the main road that runs from center of the district and connects all of its town with each other. Another important highway is D.I. Khan - Zhob Highway N-50 which connects Zhob and Quetta districts with Dera Ismail Khan. Dera Ismail Khan is also connected with Islamabad-Dera Ismail Khan Motorway M-14. It also has a airport to serve local flights.

The name of the district is due to a Baloch mercenary Ismail Khan who is the son of Malik Sohrab Dodal, founder of this area. Dera Ismail Khan was remain the part of ancient civilizations in this area. There are several ruins of these civilizations in town. The site of Kafir Kot is the famous site on a hill near the Indus River.

Dera Ismail Khan is located in the foot of Koh-e-Sulaian range. Due to rainfall, most of the locations in this area consist of clay soil cut by ravines. Eastern part of the district is a fertile alluvial plains along the Indus River which is suitable for best quality crops.

Takht-e-Sulaiman is the highest mountain near Darazinda village in Dera Ismail Khan in the Sulaiman Mountains Range. It has height of 11,440 feet above sea level. A legend was recorded by Ibn Battuta that Prophet Soloman climbed this mountain top and looked toward Hindustan. Then he turned back and this mountain is called by his name. The surrounding area of Takht-e-Sulaiman is covered with olive and pine nut forests and also a homeland for different animals like wolves, markhors, and rabbits. It is also a best place for eagles and partridges.

Meeran is burial place of Syed Muhammad Hamza Gesudaraz I and his family. It is located on the top of Takht-e-Sulaiman Mountain.

On Lakki Marwat district side, a range of sandstone hills stretch from the Sulaiman Mountains to the Indus River. The highest peak in this range is the Sheikh Badin Hill. Sheikh Badin National Park is the protected area around this peak to presever various wildlife. A spur of Kafir Kot Hills is located near the Indus River, where ruins of ancient Hindu complex of Kafir Kot is situated. It consists of five temples and a large fort.

Rehman Dheri is a Pre-Harappan archaelogical site dating from 3300 BC to 7th century in Dera Ismail Khan at a distance of 22 km in the north of city near the confluence of the Zhob River with the Gomal River. It is one of the oldest urbanized centers in the South Asia. The city has large population of Buddhists and Brahmans. Its structure is enclosed within a massive wall of blocks made from clay slabs. The inner low rectangular mound is about 22 hectares and 4.5 meters above the surrounding field. It has a grid like street structure that shows the sign of town planning. Various items such as pottery, beads, tools, and seals are found from the site.

Lal Mahara is an important Islamic architecture site of 11th and 12th century. There are eleven tombs in which seven has been lost due to natural disasters. The mausoleums are square in shape with tapering turrets at the four corners and with interior and exterior decorations. These are located at a distance of 42 km from the Dera Ismail Khan city. The site is basically a battle field of Muslims and the Mongols. Several Muslim nobles and princes were killed here and the Sultans of Delhi built these monumental mansions to honour them.

The Gomal Zam Dam is a gravity dam constructed over the Gomal River at Khjori Kach where it passes through a narrow ravine. The Gomal River, a tributary of the Indus River, confluences with the Indus River in Dera Ismail Khan after crossing the South Waziristan. This dam is used for irrigation purposes as well as hydroelectric power generation. A canal from the dam is used to irrigate the barren land of Tank and Kulachi tehsil of Dera Ismail Khan. It also produces 17.5 MW electricity.

Dera Ismail Khan is famous due to various industries related to glass, lacquered woodwork, ivory ware, sarongs, and mats. Dera Ismail Khan is also famous due to dates and mangoes. Dhaki Date, which is an exportable date, is also a major product of it. It also produces a number of agricultural commodities and fruits especially Langra Mango.

Sobat is a traditional dish of Dera Ismail Khan that is prepared with chicken and spices.

The climate of Dera Ismail Khan is extreme hot and dry in the summer season whereas it remains warm in winters. It also receives rainfall due to monsoon system.

Dera Ismail Khan Map

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