Sights and Sounds of Pakistan: Faisalabad Part-1
After Karachi and Lahore, Faisalabad is the third largest city of Pakistan with an estimated 2006 population of 2.6 million. Faisalabad is bounded on the north by the districts of Gujranwala and Sheikhupura, on the east by Sahiwal district, on the south
by Toba Tek Singh district and on the west by Jhang district.
The river Ravi flows on the Eastern and the Chenab on the Western boundary of the district. Faisalabad district is un-parallel for its agricultural productivity with cotton and wheat as its major crops, besides grains and ghee (clarified butter).
Faisalabad district is also famous for its fruit production, which include fruits like Kinno (a cross breed between oranges), oranges, fruiter, mango and guava. No worthwhile wild life exists in the area except foxes, wild boar and jackals. as for birds,
partridges, pigeons, tilliar, lal mena, quail, mallard and teal are found on the agricultural lands.
The city of Faisalabad is not more than a century old and only a century back it was the center of keeping livestock in the area. The present day Faisalabad in late 19th century was known as "Pakka Marri".
Being a fertile area across river Chenab, most of the caravans would a stop over in this general area when frequenting between Lahore and Jhang. When the British came into the area, they converted the small town into a colony, which was named as "Chenab
Canal Colony" in 1885.
This small residential colony later turned into a bigger dwelling and was renamed as "Lyall Pur" after the name of Lt. General Sir James B Lyall, the then governor of Punjab. The main purpose of building this city was to establish a market to transport the
agricultural produce from the fertile plains around the city.
The map of Faisalabad is just the copy of British flag Union jack designed by an architect Desmond Yong. The total area of 110 square acres was used to build eight bazaars & clock tower in a round shape. All these eight bazaars are connected with each other
through another bazaar, which is called Goal Bazaar.
The clock tower was called the "Ghanta Ghar" for which the gigantic clock was brought from Bombay. On September 1st 1997, Lyall Pur was re-named "Faisal Abad" in the memory of the slain King Faisal of Saudi Arabia, who during his life time contributed a
lot to bolster the friendship between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.
Faisalabad city has the distinction of being a seat of world famous Agricultural University, Agricultural Research Institute, Nuclear Institute for Agriculture and Biology (NIAB) and National Institute for Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering (NIBGE).
To be continued…