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Geographical Analysis of Nankana Sahib, Pakistan

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Introduction of Nankana sahib:

A brief history of city:

This city was named after the first Guru of Sikhs Guru Nanak Dev Ji. It is capital of Nankana Sahib District. This city has historic significance regarding religion because Guru Nanak Dev Ji spread the light of the universal message to this world so it is a city of high historic and religious value and is a popular pilgrimage site for Sikhs from all over the world especially India. (//, 2011)

It is bounded by Hafizabad on North and located about 75 kilometers south west of Lahore and about 55 kilometers east of Faisalabad and Its Southern boundary is formed by district Okara. (//, 2011)

Earlier the township was known as Rai-Bhoi-Di-Talwandi and was renamed after the birth of Guru Nanak as Nankana Sahib. Formerly the area around Nankana Sahib was a tehsil of district Sheikhupura District. In 2005 the Punjab Government decide to rear the status of city as a District.

Climate and soil conditions of city:

“The climate of the city is subject to extreme deviations. From the middle of December to the middle of March the air is very moist or cold and light to moderate rain falls at intervals. The season of the winter rains is followed by a hex of very pleasant weather. In April the temperature rises fast and the two consecutive months are very hot. Towards the end of June Monsoon conditions appear and during the following two and a half months spells of rainy weather alternate with intervals of hot oppressive weather. The average rainfall in the district is about 635 mm. The upland or the Bar in the North West, in the natural condition, is a level prairie thickly dotted over with a stunted under-growth of bush jungle. The Bar Soil is popularly known as Missie. The low land along the river Ravi has light soil. The central portion which is the Deg Valley has stiff soil. Stiff soil is either Rohi or Kallarathi depending on the salt (kallar) contents.” (Awan, 2009)

Geographical limits:


Administrative limits:

Formerly the city was a tehsil of Sheikhupura District. In May 2005 the Government of Punjab decided to raise the status of the city as a District with an aim that the economic condition of city along with the surrounding areas lift because it is a pilgrimage center for Sikhs from all over the globe. There is development especially of road network along all the city. Changes has been made in the administrative bodies of city form tehsil to district level administration.

Nankana Sahib District is administratively sectioned into three tehsils.

  1. Nankana Sahib
  2. Sangla Hill
  3. Shahkot

On 1 December 2008, Safdarabad was reattached to Sheikhupura District. (//, 2005)

Development in Nankana city:

Private impresarios and State Government have planned to develop Nankana Sahib District with various projects, including:

  • A rest house for Sikh pilgrims
  • A new International Hotel for the people of the district
  • A shopping mall
  • A housing scheme
  • A modern hospital
  • A road-link to the Lahore and Faisalabad dual-carriageway
  • District Complex Nankana Sahib
  • The International Guru Nanak University

The prospect for development of an airport has been outstretched in the district Nankana Sahib. The Government of Punjab has decided to link the city with provincial capital Lahore. (//, 2006)

Departments in Nankana district:

  • District Education Department
  • District Health care Department
  • District Police Department
  • District Law and Order Department
  • District Agriculture Department
  • District Finance Department
  • District Development Department
  • District Transportation Department
  • District Infrastructure Department
  • District Telecommunications Department
  • District Human Right Department
  • Deputy District Officers
  • Religious Department
  • Election Commission Department
  • NADRA Department
  • Tehsil Municipal Administration Department
  • Wapda Department
  • Industrial Department
  • District Fishers Department
  • District Forest Department (//, 2011)

Demography and Language:

According to the 1998 census of Pakistan Punjabi is spoken by 98% population of the city. Shahmukhi script is mostly used by natives but Nankana Sahib is one of few cities of Pakistan where the Gurmukhi dialect is also understood by the locals. The Punjabi dialects spoken in the district are;

  1. Majhi dialect which is spoken by the majority of district.
  2. Malwi dialect spoken by the migrated people from India Punjab.

Urdu is also used and spoken as national language in the offices and education centers and English is also spoken and understood by educated people.

According to Punjab Development Statistics 2008, total population of Nankana Sahib District is 1,466 thousands persons out of which 762 thousands are males and 704 thousands are females. Density of population in the district is 539 persons per square Kilometer.

Muslims are in greater in population size 97% of population is Muslim and only 3% are Sikhs.

Tehsil wise rural and urban population is given in the table:

Nankana Sahib 79 705 784
Safdarabad 54 210 264
Sangla Hill 58 138 196
Shahkot 45 177 222
Total 236 1230 1466

Source: Punjab Development Statistics 2008. (Awan, 2009)

Infra-structural facilities:

Communication network:

A) Road links.

The city has 1289.84 kilometers metaled roads in length. There has been different plans of construction and development in the city regarding roads for connecting it with big cities like Lahore, Sheikhupura, and Faisalabad through metal roads. For this purpose the government of Punjab is completing an interchange at Khangah Dogra on M-2 motor way which is connecting Lahore with Islamabad and is almost 5kms away from city Nankana. This project will help in development of newly formed district. This interchange will also give access to the Grand Trunk Road which is leading towards Indian Punjab from Wagah Border. A Nankana Sahib-Amritsar bus was initiated by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of India for Sikhs.

B) Rail linkage.

There are three major Rail heads in the district, including Nankana Sahib, Safdarabad, and Sangla Hill. Through these linkages the city has been connected to Lahore and Faisalabad districts. A train from Amritsar India via Wagah Border Lahore also came to Nankana city.

Power supply station:

There are 9 grid stations in the district varying in capacity between 66 KV to 132 KV.

Telecommunication exchanges:

The district has 30 telephone exchanges operating with varying capacity from 50 lines to 7822 lines. Mobile phone services of different networks are also available.

Social infrastructural Facilities in the District:

Nankana Sahib 732 3 1 7 3 8 33
Safdarabad 210 0 0 2 4 2 10
Sangla Hill 129 2 0 2 4 2 9
Shahkot 145 2 0 2 0 3 13
Total 1216 7 1 13 11 15 65

The following table is showing the details of social facilities in the district on Tehsil level;

Source: Punjab Development Statistics 2008 / Respective District Offices. (Awan, 2009)

Natural resources:


Main crops. Rice, sugarcane, and wheat are the main crops cultivated in the district. The production of crops between years 2005-06 to 2007-08 are given in the table below;


(2005-06 to 2007-08)

2005-06 2006-07 2007-08
Sugarcane 667 850 941
Wheat 414 411 451
Rice 173 164 180

Source: Directorate of Agriculture, Crop Reporting Service, Punjab. (Awan, 2009)

Besides, Maize, Bajra, Cotton, Mash, Mong, Jawar, Masoor, Oil seeds such as Mustard, Sun Flower are also grown in minor quantities in the district.

Main fruits:

Guava and Citrus are the main fruits grown in the district which are cultivated there production during the period of 2005-06 to 2007-08 is given below in the following table:

Production of Main Fruits

(2005-06 to 2007-08)

Fruits Production (M.TONS)
2005-06 2006-07 2007-08
Guava 24298 33644 29527
Citrus 16285 10400 9443

Source: Directorate of Agriculture, Crop Reporting Service, Punjab. (Awan, 2009)

Besides other fruits including Mango, Banana, Litchi, Jaman and Phalsa are also grown in minor quantities in the district.


Carrot, Cauliflower, Potatoes, and Onion are main vegetables grown in the district their production during the years 2005-06 to 2007-08 is shown in the table given below;

Production of Main Vegetables

(2005-06 to 2007-08)

2005-06 2006-07 2007-08
Potatoes 2059 3618 2896
Carrot 10558 9854 10311
Cauliflower 21859 17602 17553
Onion 14109 14218 13222

Source: Directorate of Agriculture, Crop Reporting Service, Punjab. (Awan, 2009)

Besides Turnip, Peas, Tomato, Chilies and Garlic are also cultivated in the district in minor quantities.


About 1.3 % of the total area of the district is under forests, which is an area of 1068.16 Hectares. There is also plantation of 955 Kilometers of tress in linear pattern alongside the roads/rails/canals in the district. Kau, Phalai, Kikar and Shisham are types of trees grown in the district.


Animal population.

The main animals which are in the district are Goats, Sheep, Cattle, and Buffalos and their population is shown in the table given below,

Animal population

Goats 256
Cattle 130
Sheep 39
Buffaloes 401

Source: Punjab Development Statistics 2008. (Awan, 2009)

Poultry population:

According to Punjab Development Statistics 2008 there 62 layer and 386 Broiler poultry farms in the district having capacity of 229 thousands and 9653 bird respectively. There are also 4 breeding farms having capacity of 510 thousand birds.

Available Hides/Skins from Slaughter houses:

In year 2006-07 animals which were slaughtered in the recognized or un-recognized slaughter houses are 51000 animals which is sound estimate of availability of hides and skins in the district as per 2008 Punjab Development Statistics.

The availability of slaughter house by – products is estimated as under:-

Blood 17.65 M.TONS

Bones 86.10 M.TONS

Tallow 17.91 M.TONS

Wool production:

The total population of sheep is 39 thousand heads in the district from which approximately 39 M.TONS rough wool is produced annually.

Literature review:


One of the most important and touchy issues of our time is utilization of energy resources. Energy provisions are compulsory to improve the infrastructure, transport, roads, industry, and construction of buildings to quicken the development of country. Pakistan is meeting severe challenge of energy deficit due to enormous increase in demand, growth of industrial zones, increment in population growth rate, poor organization of energy resources, deficient plans, devoid in implementation of policies regarding energy. (Munir, 2006)

Researches in past:

In past work has been done on solar panels in fields of remote sensing and GIS in different parts of world. A few of them are discussed over here,

“A research on the topic Satellite remote sensing for identification of solar potential sites in Pakistan has been made. The study area is located at between longitude 62 and 75 degree east and latitude 24 and 37 degree north.

Material and methods: satellite images were used in this study to identify the solar potential sites in Pakistan. Satellite data of NOAA was used which has focus on conditions of oceans and the atmosphere data which was free available on their website. Images from year 2005-2009 were selected of months including June, July and August these months were selected because these are monsoon months with maximum cloud cover. Precipitation data of following months having been collected from Meteorological department Pakistan.

Data interpretation and analysis:

ENVI and GIS are the main software packages that are employed for this satellite imagery analysis.

Data Processing:

  • Geo referencing
  • Enhancement
  • Selection of area of interest for classification (ROI)
  • Supervised Classification (maximum likelihood method)
  • Subset (Using Pakistan Boundaries)
  • Vector comparison
  • Composite (Monthly Maps)

Data analysis:

In order to find out least cloudless area, UNOIN operation has been performed which was most appropriate for combing cloud cover vector layers of different years and resultant vector layer shows the area with and without cloud cover. Final step involve to overlay the Pakistan district vector layer on each UNION layer, which provides location of least cloudless district in Pakistan.

Results and conclusion:

The results indicated that Dera Ghazi Khan and Multan have maximum potential for solar sites in whole Pakistan. While Quetta is selected to be a city receiving maximum solar radiation. Cholistan desert has been quite favorable for solar energy harvesting. In spite of having a huge potential of energy resources, Pakistan still remains an energy scarce country and has to heavily depend on imports to fulfill its energy demands.” (Ahmad, Aziz, Wahid, & Basir, 2013)

“A research on the topic A Simple Solar Radiation Index for Wildlife Habitat Studies has also been made.

Study Area:

They illustrated the use of SRI (solar radiation index) is an example application in which they tested for niche separation among bighorn sheep, elk, and mule deer during winter along a single environmental axis. The Gardiner Basin area of northern Yellowstone winter range (NYWR) USA. Houston and Despain gave the detailed description of area. The elevations in the area ranged about 1500m to 3350m.


Solar radiation Index is derived by them by using the general equation for hourly extraterrestrial radiation striking an arbitrarily oriented surface.

Relationship to Hill shade:

Ciarniello et al. (2005) calculated hill shade values using a digital elevation model DEM and ArcGIS 8.3 version used those values as surrogate for solar radiation. The hillshade index was difficult to evaluate because algorithm for calculating hillshade is not given.

Ungulate Niche Separation:

They calculated slope and aspect from 30 m DEM and determined the density of use by bighorn sheep, elk, and mule deer from radio telemetry data gathered in previous studies.

Results and discussions:

In both comparison of relationship to hillshade with different values of azimuth and elevation they observe inexplicable behavior in values of hillshade. For all species examined winter use was concentrated in locations receiving relatively high levels of solar radiation. They found no difference in allocation of winter use by bighorn sheep and elk with respect to solar radiation. Our SRI is designed to enhance wildlife habitat models containing a solar radiation component by reducing noise improving interpretability and minimizing the number of model covariates. Ultimately this promotes greater understanding of the determinants of wild life habitat relationships and in turn improved decision making by wildlife managers.” (Vore, Ibry, Keating, & Gogan, 2007)

“Work regarding solar radiation calculations has also been made on the following topic: The Calculation of Solar and Net Radiation in Mountain Terrain,

There is at present a need for reliable data on fluxes of solar and net radiation in hilly terrain. This paper develops a model which uses cloud temperature data to obtain above radiation fluxes in a mesoscale mountainous environment at Risdon Tasmania.

The model was tested against climatological measurements of solar radiation in a horizontal area and was found to be satisfactory. Extending the test into a mountainous terrain is not practicable since measurements of solar and net radiations in such environment would be disturbed by the high forest and vegetation cover. The model must be viewed as an estimation of the solar and net radiation input into the vegetation-soil system.

Diffuse solar radiation is an important component of solar radiation flux in this cloudy and temperate marine climate. Due to its isotropic nature diffuse solar radiation minimizes spatial differences in solar and net radiation receipt. Considerable interception of direct solar radiation occurs in winter time and therefore differences in solar and net radiation receipt are highest then. In winter time north facing slopes will receive the highest radiation while south facing slopes are largely in shadow and receive mostly diffuse solar radiation.


This paper has indicated a method for estimating incident direct, diffuse and net radiation in mountainous terrains. The model has performed adequately when tested against climatological estimates of direct and diffuse solar radiation on a horizontal surface. The results leave open several paths of research. Transmission of radiation through the vegetation canopy could be studied in this mesoscale terrain. Also important are the implications of these results to the meso-scale water balance. Pan evaporation correlates well with net radiation (Kirkpatrick & Nunez, 1980) which implies that approximate microscale water budgets could be obtained in the study area if the assumption is made that precipitation is constant. In summary, it is felt that the study of the incident radiation must represent a first step in under-standing the energy exchanges between the surface and the atmosphere in this complex environment.” (Nunez, 1980)

“Research has also been done regarding solar radiation calculation on the topic named as: Modeling a Solar Radiation Topoclimatology for the Rio Grande River Basin.

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