Deserts of Pakistan – Thal desert
This desert is located in the Province of Punjab on Sindsagar Doab. It is a vast area between the Jehlum and Indus rivers south of the Pothohar Plateau. It covers an area of about 190 miles long from north to south and 70 miles (110km) wide from east to west. It resembles the Cholistan and the Thar deserts geographically. It is divided into six districts namely; Khushab, Mianwali, Layyah, Bahkkar, Jhang and Muzzafarabad. On the left bank of Jehlum river is where its part in Jhang exists.
Some of the main towns of the desert are Mankera, Roda Thal, Mari Shah Sakhira, Mehmood Shaheed, Dullewalla, Shahi Shumali, Koat Aazam, Jiasel, Jandan Wala, Noor pur Thal, Jandan Wala, Rang pur, Hyderabad Thal, Shah Wala and Piplan. The locals of Thal basically speak ‘Seraiki’ but Punjabi is also spoken by many in the desert .
The main activity in the region is cattle rearing. There are some reclamation projects going on in some area providing canal water for irrigation from the connecting rivers, so some agriculture is also done in those areas. There are many tribes in the desert namely; Tiwana, Sial, Chhina, Mammak, Bhachar, Baghoor, Rahdari, Jhammat, Cheenna (Jutt), Bhachar, Gahi, Aheer, Lashari, Waghra’s and Awans etc.
Just after the independence of Pakistan the Thal Development Authority TDA developed a town named Liaqatabad also known as ‘Piplan’. A Textile mill was also established with a nice residential colony for accommodating the employees of the mill. A power plant also got installed for the town. Lots of plantations were done on the green belts which created a unique scene in the desert. Later the mill was bought by the Kohinoor group and then it got closed for some reasons. Now there is a residential town there with the name Kohinoor city.
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