Districts Mirpur is located at the extreme
South of the State and is linked with Pakistan and the districts of Azad
Kashmir through several routes. District Mirpur comprises partly plain and
partly hilly areas. Its hot climate and other geographical conditions
closely resemble to those of Jhelum and Gujrat, the adjoining districts of
Pakistan. The people of this area are basically agriculturists. During the
last four decades a large number of people from this district have gone
abroad, especially to United Kingdom for earning their livelihood. As such,
they are today the major foreign exchange earning resource for Pakistan. As
it adjoins the industrial cities of Pakistan, the Government of Azad Jammu &
Kashmir has successfully endeavored to develop it as an industrial place and
promote private investment for establishing Textile, vegetable ghee,
garments, scooters, cosmetics and many other industries.
Mangla is a small beautiful modern town. It
is situated at a distance of 110 kilometers from Islamabad and is 15
kilometers short of Mirpur City . The construction of Mangla reservoir
having perimeter of 100 kilometers and presence of Mangla and Ramkot Forts
of Mughal period have turned this place into an attractive tourist spot.
Mangla has special attraction for the tourists coming on short visits
because of its proximity to Jhelum, Lahore and Rawalpindi / Islamabad .
Mirpur, the district headquarter is
situated at an elevation of 459 meters A.S.L. It is linked with the main
Peshawar- Karachi Grand Trunk Road at Dina, a small town about 15 kilometers
short of Jhelum city.
The construction of Mangla Dam converted
the old Mirpur town into a big artificial lake and effected a population of
about 50,000. But it paved the way for existing new Mirpur town situated on
the bank of Mangla Lake. The city is well planned and buildings are mostly
of modern design. Mirpur has developed into an industrial city very rapidly.
All the basic amenities of life are available in Mirpur. Colleges,
hospitals, banks, shopping centers, hotels, telephone & telegraph units,
Forest , PWD, Industries and Tourist rest houses exist in the city. Bus and
wagon transport services are also available.
Picturesquely located on the summit of a
hill, Ramkot Fort is built over the site of an old Hindu Shiva temple. 3
sides of this hill top are surrounded by River Jhelum (ancient Vitasta).
During excavations relics of the 5th - 9th century AD have been discovered
near one of the temples. In the 16th - 17th century AD the Muslim rulers of
Kashmir in safe guarding their boundaries built numerous forts. Ramkot,
sitting atop at the confluance of the river Jhelum & Poonch is one of them.
The Sikh Maharaja of Kashmir further fortified Ramkot.
Ramkot Fort is located on the opposite side
of the Mirpur Town and one has to cross Mangla Lake on boat to reach there.
A 10 minutes travel by road from Mirpur leads to Sukhian and nearby Army
Water Sports Club from where boats are available for access to Ramkot Fort.
It takes 45 minutes to reach there.
Ramkot Fort can also be visited from Mirpur
via Dudyial-Baily Kathaar route (77 Km) but from Baily Kathaar onward there
is no regular road so it is better to travel from Sukhian by boat.
from Mirpur, a black top road runs to Khari Shareef, a place of religious
importance. This place is well known due to the shrines of Baba Peer-e-Shah
Ghazi and Mian Mohammad Buksh (the author of famous "Saif-ul- Malook"
based on mystic poetry. Thousands of pilgrims visit this sacred place to
rejuvenate their hearts daily.