The highest peaks of the Hindu Kush make up Chitral district in Pakistan 's north-westerly corner. The area is characterised by its beauty, extreme conditions and isolation; accessed by two precarious tracks both closed by snow for four months each year. The Kho people inhabit small villages strung along the valleys where life and economy is based on subsistence farming. Ancient irrigation systems support the growth of various crops and goats fatten on high summer pastures. Produce is stored through the extreme winter to last until next harvest.
Chitral was governed under a feudal system for centuries which was abolished in the 1970s but remains influential in Chitrali life and culture. Chitral is facing this social change alongside an increasing population where land is an extremely limited resource. This means that the Chitrali people today must diversify and develop both socially and economically. Schools are new to Chitral in this era and vary hugely in quality, the education system in general being noted for systemic weaknesses.
© Jam 2007.
UK charity SC 037050.
|Chitral||Chitrali news and info||More maps||Satellite image highlighting Chitral|
|The Chitral Times||Detailed map of Chitral district|
|Chitrali site & music Wikipedia||Chitral map with pictures|
|Tourist info 1 Tourist info 2|
|History||One Two||Development papers||Livelihoods in Chitral, by AKF|
|The siege of Chitral||Development in Chitral, by AKF|
|A month in Chitral||Girls and education around Booni|