Phone Code : 083
Before 1947 the local government system in Sibi district was governed
by the Bazar Regulations introduced in 1910 by the British Government. The
members of local bodies were nominated members and they were administrated
by deputy commissioners. During 1947-58, local bodies stayed inactive in
Sibi district, like in the rest of the Province. Local bodies were
reactivated in 1958 with the introduction of the Basic Democracies system,
as laid down in the Basic Democracies Order of 1959, issued by the martial
law regime of General Mohammad Ayub Khan. The Basic Democracies system had
four tiers. These were 1) union council, tehsil council, district council,
divisional council, in the case of rural areas, and 2) town committee,
municipal committee, district council, and divisional council in the case
of urban areas.
The Basic Democracies system was amended and superseded by the present
system introduced with the Balochistan Local Government Ordinance of 1980.
It is a two - tier system comprising union councils and district councils
for rural areas, and town committees/ municipal committees and district
council for urban areas. For a list of villages, union councils and
Sibi district has one district council, 13 union councils, one town
committee, and one municipal committee. Membership of union council is by
election, through universal adult franchise. The same applies to town
committee and municipal committee. The members of the district council are
drawn from the elected members of union councils. The elected chairmen of
town committee and municipal committee are ex-officio members of the
Customs of Co-operation Sibi
In rural areas, the traditional institution of communal cooperation in
socio-economic spheres is still in practice among all ethnic groups, but
not as much as half a century ago. It is also found in the urban
settlements Sibi town and Harnai town, where a number of social welfare
organisations are in operation. In the rural areas, there are no formal
community based organisations. Instead, communal cooperation is linked to
specific occasions or situations, and when these arise, the community
becomes active. The most well-known occasions are harvesting of crops,
marriage and irrigation management. In the urban centres, there are formal
organisations oriented to specific purposes, such as emergency medical
aid, education and other socio-economic issues. Among instances of
communal cooperation, collective harvesting of crops is perhaps one of the
Harvesting of Crops: Hasher, or use of communal labour for harvesting, is
an age- old institution in the district as it is all over the province.
Under this custom, the farmer who needs help to harvest his crop, invites
fellow villagers to help him. He does not pay them, but has to provide
food. However, the custom is now on the decline, because most farmers are
able to provide enough men for the work in their own households and more
particularly, because of availability of mechanical thrashers, which are
time as well as cost saving. Hasher labour must be served with the best of
food, and that can turn out to be more expensive than renting a thrasher.
Moreover family labour can cope with harvesting.
Marriage: The nature and extent of communal cooperation on the occasion of
marriage varies from tribe to tribe. The common element in all these
customs is to facilitate the bridegroom's marriage feast arrangement and
to give gifts to the bridegroom. The gift may take the form of cash or
animals. In some cases, donation is raised for the bridegroom; in local
terminology it is called phoori.
Gifts in cash and kind in some cases meet a substantial part of the feast
expenses. Thus, in a way, the bridegroom's marriage feast is a sort of
communal function. The recipient of gifts, in cash or in kind, is supposed
to reciprocate the goodwill when there is marriage in the family from
where the gift is received. There are tribes where the bridegroom is
presented cash after the feast. The amount is duly recorded as soon as it
is received. The custom demands that, whenever a male from the gift making
family is married, the gift receiver must give a gift in cash equal to or
more than that received by him on his marriage from that family.
Assistance in cash is usually provided to the needy on the occasion of
marriage or funeral.
Irrigation Management: Construction and cleaning of water courses is the
community's responsibility. All beneficiaries of an irrigation system are
supposed to participate in this activity or pay for substitute labour.
Labour support: is provided, on request, by the community for house
construction. This is not very common, though.
Tribal vendetta: One of the age-old institutions of communal cooperation,
still persisting in undiminished force, is that of helping and protecting
the members of one's tribe against the threats to lives from another. When
members of two tribes fight, it becomes a tribal conflict and the target
is any member of the opponent tribe, until the conflict is settled.
Sibi district was established in October 1903 then covering the present
districts of Sibi, Ziarat, Dera Bugti, Kohlu, and Nasirabad.
The district is named after its headquarters, the town of Sibi, which in
its turn derives its name from Siwi, a Hindu lady of Sewa race who is said
to have ruled over this part of the country in former times.
The district borders on Ziarat district in the north, and in the north
east on Loralai district. In the east and south east it borders on Kohlu
district. To the south and south west lies Bolan district and in the north
west it borders on Mastung district and Quetta district.
History of Colonial Administration
The British colonial influence started extending to Sibi region in the
late forties of the 19th century, when in 1839, Misri Khan, the head of
Panri tribe, tendered his services to Shah Shuja, and was taken into
British service with a number of his followers, who were styled the "Baloch
Levy. Subsequent events are a story of long and intense tribal wars that
paved the way for ultimate annexation of the Sibi region to the British
colonial empire. An entertaining account of the political events after
Misri Khan's induction into British service is given in an old (undated)
Gazetteer of Sibi; of which relevant excerpts are presented below:
"In March 1841, Mr. Ross Bell, the Political Agent in upper Sind, deputed
one of his assistants with a detachment of troops, under the command of
Colonel Wilson of the Bombay Cavalry, to collect the arrears of revenue
due from Khajaks of Sibi on behalf of Shah Shuja. The detachment was
accompanied by Misri Khan, and on the Khajaks refusing to comply with the
demands, attacked the town, but were repulsed with heavy loss.
Reinforcements from Bagh were sent up under General Brooks. But before
they could arrive the Khajaks abandoned their town, the defence of which
were then demolished. The Khajaks were permitted to return during the
following year and the town was rebuilt. From November 1841 to September
1842 an Assistant Political officer, resided at Sibi. When the British
troops were withdrawn from Afghanistan on the termination of the war, the
district was handed over by the British to the Khan of Kalat, but it does
not appear to have been occupied by him, and in 1843 again came under the
Baruzai rule upto the second Afghan war Sibi continued to be held by the
Baruzai chiefs as governors of the Afghan rulers; but owing to the
constant raids and encroachments of the Marris, the country was, at the
request of the Sardars and people, occupied at the commencement of the war
by a detachment of troops from Jacobabad. In November 1887 the Kach-Kowas
and Harnai valleys, Sibi, Duki and Thal-Chotiali were declared parts of
British India. Owing to the disputes between the Zarkuns and the Marris,
Kohlu was brought under the British protection and added to the
Thal-Chotiali district in 1892. In February 1891 Sanjawi was again
transferred to Thal-Chotiali, and Barkhan was added in April 1892. On
reconstruction of the district in October 1903, the Barkhan, Duki and
Sajawi tehsils were transferred to the new Loralai district, and the name
of the Thal-Chotiali district was changed into that of Sibi district."
The district underwent reorganization in the post-independence period to
create Nasirabad division, Dera Bugti district, Kohlu district and Ziarat
district. Following the post-1947 administrative re-organisation, the
district's territorial jurisdiction has shrunk from 11,390 sq. miles as it
was in 1903, to 7.796 sq. miles. The old description of it being a
district covering vast and varied climatological zones, as it once was, is
no longer true.
Important places/buildings are:
1. Fort Mir Chakar Khan.
2. Victoria Hall built in 1903; now named Jirga Hall.
3. Nari Gauge; from where the Nari canal takes off.
4. Sohbat Sarai (Inn).