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Sind

The region that from which India derives in name, modern Sind is today a crucial province of Pakistan. Often compared to Egypt for its dominance by a river, its similarities are climatic and topographical. Today however, arachi, the controversial mega city often compared to Kolkata, is where most of the dynamics of the province lie, with many of Pakistan's ruptures finding mirror images in the city.

india Updated: Jan 12, 2004 11:55 IST
PTI

The region that from which India derives in name, modern Sind is today a crucial province of Pakistan. Often compared to Egypt for its dominance by a river, its similarities are climatic and topographical. Today however, arachi, the controversial mega city often compared to Kolkata, is where most of the dynamics of the province lie, with many of Pakistan's ruptures finding mirror images in the city.

Main towns: Karachi, Hyderabad, Khairpur, Sukkur

Geography: The modern province of Sind runs from the confluence of the Indus and its tributaries, through the edges of the Thar desert to the Arabian Sea coast. The desert range of Kirthar is the only natural feature breaking the monotony of the landscape. But what shapes the province is the over 1,000 kilometre long delta of the Indus. The Indus is usually in a very restless phase here and the constant shifting of its course has meant that hardly any area is left untouched. The region also sees great extremes of temperature.

Economy: Only with the development of artificial irrigation facilities did agriculture become possible in Sind in the 1970s. However, cotton, which is the most important cash crop, is the one that earns maximum revenue. Also crucial in the economy of the province are the oil and natural gas fields in Sui. The province's industries are concentrated in Karachi, Pakistan's largest city and the sea outlet of the nation.

History: Though today Mohenjo Daro is perhaps the best known of the historic sites in Sind, the story of human civilization is much older here. Being at a crossroads, Sind has been constantly invaded over the millennia, both from the east and the west, as also occasionally from the north and from the sea in the south. From the Persians to the Indo-Greeks, the Pratiharas to the Arabs and the Mughals, Sind has attracted many.

Places to see:
Karachi: Starting as a small fishing village called Kalachi-jo-Goth, the city today has a more than 13 million people residing in it, making it one of the largest urban hubs globally. Colourful, drab, traditional, modern, religious, secular - Karachi's contradictions hardly seem to end.
Thatta: The world's largest necropolis, Thatta has more than a million graves, ancient and modern, of royals and commoners. Afghan, Turk, Persian different styles are cheek-by-jowl in this historic town.
Mohenjo Daro: Perhaps the best known of the Indus sites, this is a virtual open museum, a treasure house of monuments and artifacts.Discovered in 1922, it once pushed the historical boundaries of India by over a thousand years.