Sistan and Baluchestan Province tourist information
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 SistÄ?n and BalÅ«chestÄ?n , the people are mostly BalÅ?ch and speak the Baluchi language . In the far north of SistÄ?n and BalÅ«chestÄ?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 BalÅ«chestÄ?n means "Land of the BalÅ?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 SistÄ?n ; though he currently resides in Najaf , Iraq .
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 .
Sistan Province has two main passenger airports :
· Zahedan Airport
· Chabahar Airport
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 .
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 .