1254 Railway Stations in Pakistan – The List

Owais Mughal

I’ve done a mini research on finding the number of railway stations in Pakistan and the number of stations I’ve found so far is 1254. I believe this number is accurate but there is a possibility of a few more stations – which are not there any more – and therefore are not included in the following list. My compilation of the complete index of stations is given below.

The list of stations is interesting to view, if only because you would read so many place names that you might never have heard of.
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A Walk through Karachi’s Empress Market

Owais Mughal

On my recent trip to Pakistan, I tried to re-live some of the fondest memories of my early youth. One of them was daily travel in public buses during my college days. In order to relive that experience, I decided to take a trip to Empress Market by bus.

Photo to the left shows Empress Market. I took this photo from the overhead pedestrain bridge on the morning of Jan 11, 2007.

At Karaimabad market bus stop, I made a hand gesture to an approaching route 5C bus. The bus driver made eye contact with me and acknowledged by slowing down. The norm in Karachi is that a bus never comes to a full halt for a single ‘sawari’ (passenger) because monetary profits from a single passenger fare is not worth breaking the engine motion. Therefore when bus slowed down to a speed of approximately 5 kmph, I quickly jumped in by grabbing on to the hand rail. It was a proud moment for me to realize that after all these years I have not forgotten the art of climbing onto a moving bus. I looked around the bus with the face of a conquerer but no one paid any attention to me so I meekly sat down at the first available seat.

Photo to the above right shows birds eye view of Empress Market. This photo is courtesy of Ali Zasami. Continue reading

Views of Manora Island

Owais Mughal

 

I got a chance to visit Manora Island on Jan 7, 2007. Selected photos from the trip are below. Manora, may have been a real island couple of hundred years ago but today it is connected to Karachi mainland via a 12 km long causeway (Sandspit beach) road and it is now more like a peninsula in technical terms. The most common route to reach Manora is via boat from Kimari harbor.

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Mud Volcanoes of Balochistan

Owais Mughal

Pakistan’s Balochistan province is gifted with a diverse landscape. Among many geological wonders here, one big attraction is the presence of 18 mud volcanoes.

Infact world’s largest and highest known mud volcano is located in Balochistan. The altitude of this highest mud volcano is 300 ft. The mud volcanoes of Balochistan are not only located on the land but from time to time they appear as small temporary islands in the Arabian Sea also.

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In the Land of Kunhar

Owais Mughal

It was August 1992 and the second year exams at NED’s Electrical Department had just finished. To celebrate the big relief that came after hard work of many months, my friend Umar and I decided to go to Northern Pakistan for vacations. On the day of departure we reached the cantonment railway station. We had first class seats resrved in Tezrau (fast current) express. After we settled down in our compartment and looked around, we found some interesting co-travellers. They included an all-obese family of Karachi, going Muree for vacations. Then there was a Khan of Gilgit going home. He spoke very funny e.g. when he tried to describe a short and healthy person on the train and said:

” woh hai na….woh chota waala, mota waala” (You see him…. that small one and healthy one)

Then there was this fruit lover person sitting next to us. He sampled fruits from each and every vendor that came on the train. In a day’s journey, he almost ate a garden full of fruits. So much so that before our train reached Rawalpindi he had developed food poisoning.

We also had two poet brothers as our companion. All through the journey they kept reading poetry books and occassionally moved their heads from right to left in ecstasy. This was the sign that they understood a ‘sher’ (couplet).

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Ziarat ke zaair

Owais Mughal

It was September 1991. Along with two of my good friends; Umar Shah and Nauman; I was vacationing in Quetta. After exploring Quetta for two days, we decided to have a day trip to Ziarat. Little did we know that we were in for a travel treat, and hence this post.
On the day of travel to Ziarat, three of us sat on the back seat of a rickshaw and asked the rickshaw pilot to take us to the Quetta bus adda (station). This bus adda was a sea of rudderless machinery and chaotic humanity. There were wagons and buses going to all parts of the country. There were hot soup sellers sitting on the ground and electronics sellers bargaining and then agreeing to sell their merachandise at 1% of the originally asked price.

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Khewra Salt Mines

Owais Mughal

A friend recently sent me few photos of Khewra area and that got me interested in finding more about the famous Khewra Salt Mines and Tourist Resort. Following is a combination plate of what I already knew and what I learnt new about Khewra.

History:

Geologists put the age of rock-salt found in Khewra at about 600 million years. In geological timescale this time period is called Precambrian

It is said that discovery of rock salt in Khewra area dates back to as early as circa 326 BC. According to a legend, the army of Alexander the great was resting in Khewra area after a battle with Raja Porus. Some horses of Alexander’s army were then seen licking rock salt in the area. Somebody from Alexander’s army noted down the incident in his ledger or diary and hence?we came to know that salt was discovered?here circa 326 BC.?History is however silent?on which language this incident was recorded in (Greek?) or where is that diary now. But since those days people in the area continued to collect salt from the out crops of salt seams that were exposed at the hill surface.

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