Tourism Information of Khuzestan

Sistan and Baluchestan Province is one of the 31 provinces of Iran . It is in the southeast of the country , bordering Pakistan and Afghanistan and its capital is Zahedan .

The province is the largest in Iran , with an area of 181,785 km² and a population of 2.5 million . The counties of the province are Chabahar , Qasar-qand , Dalgan , Hirmand , Iranshahr , Khash , Konarak , Nikshahr , Saravan , Sarbaz , Soran , Zabol , Zaboli , Zahedan and Zehak .

The population comprises the Baluch who form a majority in the province , followed by the relatively large minority , the Sistani Persians . Smaller communities of Kurds (in the eastern highlands and near Iranshahr , the expatriate Brahui (on the borders between Iran and Pakistan) , and other resident and itinerant ethnic groups such as the Gypsies are also found in the province .

 

Geography and culture

The province comprises two sections , Sistan in the north and Baluchestan in the south . The combined Sistan and Baluchestan province today accounts for one of the driest regions of Iran with a slight increase in rainfall from east to west , and an obvious rise in humidity in the coastal regions . The province is subject to seasonal winds from different directions , the most important of which are the 120-day wind of Sistan known as Levar , the Qousse wind , the seventh (Gav-kosh) wind , the Nambi or south wind , the Hooshak wind , the humid and seasonal winds of the Indian Ocean , the North or (Gurich) wind and the western (Gard) wind .

In the south , east and west of Sist�?n and Balūchest�?n , the people are mostly Bal�?ch and speak the Baluchi language . In the far north of Sist�?n and Balūchest�?n , the people are mostly Persians and speak a dialect of the Persian language known as sistani/seestani , similar to the Dari Persian language in Afghanistan . The name Balūchest�?n means "Land of the Bal�?ch" and is used to represent the majority Baloch peoples inhabiting the province , Sistan was added to the name to represent the minority Persian peoples who speak the sistani dialect of Persian .

Many scholars , orators , and literary personalities have sprung up from this part of Iran , amongst which are Farrukhi Sistani , Ya'qub bin Laith as-Saffar and Rostam . Ayatollah Sistani is also from Sist�?n ; though he currently resides in Najaf , Iraq .

 

History

In the epigraphs of Bistoon and Persepolis , Sistan is mentioned as one of the eastern territories of Darius the Great . The name Sistan , as mentioned above , is derived from Saka (also sometimes Saga , or Sagastan) , one of the Aryan tribes that had taken control over this area in the year 128 BCE . During the Arsacid Dynasty (248 BC to 224 CE) , the province became the seat of Suren-Pahlav Clan . From the Sassanid period till the early Islamic period , Sistan flourished considerably .

During the reign of Ardashir I of Persia , Sistan came under the jurisdiction of the Sassanids , and in 644CE , the Arab Muslims gained control as the Persian empire was in its final moments of collapsing .

During the reign of the second caliph of Islam , Omar ibn Al-Khattab , this territory was conquered by the Arabs and an Arab commander was assigned as governor . The famous Persian ruler Ya'qub-i Laith Saffari , whose descendants dominated this area for many centuries , later became governor of this province . In 916 CE , Baluchestan was ruled by the Daylamids and thereafter the Seljuqids , when it became a part of Kerman . Dynasties such as the Saffarids , Samanids , Qaznavids , and Seljuqids , also ruled over this territory .

In 1508 CE , Shah Ismail I of the Safavid dynasty conquered Sistan , and during the reign of Nader Shah there was further turmoil .

 

Sistan and Baluchestan today

The province today is the most underdeveloped , desolate , and poorest of Iran's provinces . The government of Iran has been trying to reverse this situation by implementing new plans such as creating the Chabahar Free Trade-Industrial Zone .

 

Colleges and universities

1-    University of Sistan and Baluchestan

2-    Chabahar Maritime University

3-    Zabol University

4-    Islamic Azad University of Iranshahr

5-    Islamic Azad University of Zahedan

6-    Zahedan University of Medical Sciences

7-    Zabol University of Medical Sciences

8-    International University of Chabahar

9-    Iranshar University

 

National rail network

The city of Zahedan has been connected to Quetta in Pakistan for a century with a broad gauge railway . It has weekly trains for Kovaitah . Recently a railway from Bam , Iran to Zahedan has been inaugurated . There may be plans to build railway lines from Zahedan to Chabahar .

 

Airports

Sistan Province has two main passenger airports :

·         Zahedan Airport

·         Chabahar Airport

 

Ports

Port of Chabahar in South of province is the main port to be connected by a new railway to Zahedan in future .

 

Industry & mining

Industry is new to the province . Efforts have been done and tax , customs and financial motivations have caused more industrial investment , new projects , new producing jobs and improvement of industry .

The most important factories are : – Khash cement factory with production of 2600 tons cement daily and three other cement .

Factories under construction : – Cotton cloth & fishing net weaving factories and the Brick factory can be named as well .

The province has important geological and metal mineral potentials such as : Chrome , copper , granite , antimony , talc , manganese , iron , lead , zinc , tin , nickel , platinum , gold & silver .

One of the main Mines in this province is Chel Kooreh copper mine in 120 km north of Zahedan and because of copper in Mining in Iran .

 

Publications

Many scholars have worked and published on Balochistan of Iran . The works and projects are kept in the governmental libraries throughout Balochestan . Most of these works focus on economic developments of the region . On social , cultural , and political domains few works have been carried out . Most notable among them are books on Baloch history by Iraj Afshar Sistani , Azim Shahbukhsh , Hamid Ahmadi , Mahmoud Moghadam , Ghasem Siasar , Taj Mohammad Berisiq , Ahmed Raza Taheri , Mohammad Hassan Hossinbor , Carina Jahani , and Vodod Sepahi . Several major works have been published by Western scholars such as Selig Harrison . On the politics of Balochistan after the Islamic Revolution of 1979 , two studies have been carried out ; one by Mohammad Hassan Hosseinbor and other by Ahmed Raza Taheri . In recent times , Baloch scholars have become more interested to explore Balochestan . However , in comparison with the Pakistani Baloch scholars , the Iranians have been less active on publication business .

Shahr-e Sukhteh

Shahr-e Sūkhté , also spelled as Shahr-e Sukhteh and Shahr-i Sh?khta , is an archaeological site of a sizable Bronze Age urban settlement , associated with the Jiroft culture . It is located in Sistan and Baluchistan Province , the southeastern part of Iran , on the bank of the Helmand River , near the Zahedan-Zabol road . In July 2014 it was placed on the World Heritage List of UNESCO .
The reasons for the unexpected rise and fall of the Burnt City are still wrapped in mystery . Artifacts recovered from the city demonstrate a peculiar incongruity with nearby civilizations of the time and it has been speculated that Shahr-e-Sookhteh might ultimately provide concrete evidence of a civilization east of prehistoric Persia that was independent of ancient Mesopotamia .

Mount Khajeh

Mount Khwaja or Mount Khwajeh is a flat-topped black basalt hill rising up as an island in the middle of Lake Hamun , in the Iranian province of Sistan and Baluchestan .
The trapezoid-shaped basalt lava outcropping , located 30 km southwest of the town of Zabol , rises to 609 meters above sea level and has a diameter ranging from 2.0 to 2.5 kilometres . It is the only natural height in the Sistan area , and is named after an Islamic pilgrimage site on the hill : the tomb and shrine of Khwaja Ali Mahdi , a descendant of Ali ibn Abi Talib .
Mount Khwaja is also an important archaeological site : On the southern promontory of the eastern slope , the ruins of a citadel complex - known as the Ghagha-Shahr - with its remains of a fire temple attest to the importance of the island in pre-Islamic Iran . According to Zoroastrian legend , Lake Hamun is the keeper of Zoroaster's seed . In Zoroastrian eschatology , when the final renovation of the world is near , maidens will enter the lake and then give birth to the saoshyans , the saviours of humankind .
The fire temple is on a terrace behind high walls and is protected by two forts , whose remains are respectively known as Kok-e Zal and Chehel Dokhtaran . Collectively , the ruins are called Qal'a-e Kafaran "Fort of Infidels" or Qal'a-e Sam "Fort of Sam ," the grandfather of the mythical Rostam (one of the fortresses here is named "Rostams castle") . Both names reflect pre-Islamic heritage . The walls of the temple were once extravagantly decorated with murals , some of which are now on display in museums in Tehran , Berlin , New Delhi and New York .
The citadel complex was first investigated by Marc Aurel Stein in 1915-1916 . The site was later excavated by Ernst Herzfeld , and was again investigated in part by Giorgio Gullini in a short expedition of 1960 . Initially , Herzfeld tentatively dated the palace complex to the 1st century CE , that is , to the Arsacid period (248 BCE-224 CE) . Herzfeld later revised his estimate to a later date and today the Sassanid period (224-651 CE) is usually considered to be more likely . Three bas-reliefs on the outer walls that depict riders and horses are attributed to this later period . Beyond the citadel at the top of the plateau are several other unrelated buildings , of uncertain function and probably dating to the Islamic period .