Pakistan Overview

By | October 23, 2021

Pakistan borders Iran to the west, Afghanistan to the northwest, China to the north, India to the east and the Arabian Sea to the south.

More than a third of the country’s area is covered by the tertiary subsidence zone of the industrial lowlands. In its north, the five rivers Jhelum, Chanab, Ravi, Beas and Sutlej, which have their source in the Himalayas, form the alluvial land of the Punjab. The flood plain of the Indus and the stream fans of its great tributaries form the actual habitat of the country; the rivers provide the water for irrigation farming.

In the dry season, the Indus largely evaporates in the lower reaches; it flows into a 7,800 km 2 delta that is shrinking as a result of water abstraction for irrigation into the Arabian Sea. The industrial lowlands are bounded in the west by the mountains of Baluchistan (Sulaymani Mountains up to 3 452 m above sea level), in the north by the Salt Range and Potwar Plateau, in the east by the Thar desert. In the north, Pakistan has a share in the Hindu Kush, which reaches 7,690 m above sea level in Tirich Mir, and in the Himalayas. In the high mountain ranges, partly glaciated mountain ranges alternate with wide plateaus. In occupied by Pakistan part of Kashmir are located in the Himalayas the Nanga Parbat (8126 m above sea level), in Karakorum of K 2 (m 8611 above sea level).

The deforestation of the few forests and the incorrect cultivation of irrigation systems promote soil erosion and desertification. There is a shortage of clean drinking water in Pakistan. Around 11% of the land area is designated as national parks, nature reserves and game reserves.

National symbols

The national flag was adopted on August 11, 1947 and goes back to the Muslim League. In the middle of the green cloth it shows the white rising crescent moon and a white star. The Pakistani flag also received a white stripe on the leech, which is a quarter of the flag’s length. The green color refers to Islam as the basis of the state, the white stripe symbolizes the religious minorities.

The coat of arms (since 1955) shows in the green and silver quartered shield in the first green field cotton plants within a silver square standing on the tip, in the second silver field a tea branch, in the silver third field a sheaf of wheat and in the silver-green divided fourth field four jute plants. Cotton and wheat stand for West Pakistan, tea and jute plants symbolize East Pakistan. The green crescent moon with a star hovers above the shield, which is surrounded by a wreath of daffodils (the Pakistani national flower); under the wreath a tape with the motto “Iman, Itehad, Nazm” (faith, unity, discipline).

National holidays. On August 14th, the independence from the British colonial power in 1947 is celebrated. March 23rd is Republic Day (proclamation of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in 1956).


There is no general compulsory education, although the constitution guarantees free primary education. In primary education (duration: 5 years) the school enrollment rate is 78%, in rural areas and for girls it is significantly lower; many children do not complete elementary school. The secondary level comprises the three-year middle and two-year secondary level and, based on this, higher secondary (colleges) and technical schools. The language of instruction is Urdu. In addition to the state schools, whose level of equipment is very low, especially in rural areas, there are (English-speaking and fee-based) private schools and Koran schools that are outside the state school supervision and Some are considered a training center for militant Islamists.

According to topschoolsintheusa, the standard of education is very unequal according to the sexes. While the literacy rate for men is 71.1%, it is 46.5% for women. The Pakistani Nobel Peace Prize laureate M. Yousafzai also calls for a better school education for girls. There are over 100 state universities and technical college-like institutions. The oldest university is the Punjab University (founded 1882) in Lahore.


Freedom of the media in Pakistan is enforced by the principles of Islam and various group interests, v. a. limited those of the military.

Press: In Pakistan, over 400 daily newspapers and around 1,300 weekly and monthly magazines provide information about what is happening. The most important publishing locations besides the capital Islamabad are Karachi and Lahore. The daily newspapers with the highest circulation include “The Daily Jang” (founded 1940; appears in Urdu), “Nawa-e Waqt” (founded 1940; Urdu and English) and “Dawn” (founded 1947; English).

News Agencies: The main agency is the semi-official Associated Press of Pakistan (APP, founded in 1948). Private agencies are National News Agency (NNA, founded in 1992), News Network International (NNI, founded in 1992), Pakistan Press International (PPI, founded in 1956 as the Pakistan Press Association, PPA), United Press of Pakistan Ltd. (UPP, founded 1949) and International News Network (INN).

Broadcasting: The state-owned Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC, founded in 1947 as Radio Pakistan), based in Islamabad, broadcasts radio programs in over 20 languages. Private broadcasters include »Capital FM«, »CityFM89« and »FM-100«. Pakistan Television Corporation Ltd., founded in 1964. (state) broadcasts the programs »PTV-1« and »PTV-2«. Shalimar Television Network (founded in 1985 as People’s Television Network) is also majority-owned. Private television channels have only been permitted since 2000.

Pakistan Overview