Concept

Shimshal

Résumé
Shimshal (old name: Shingshal) (شمشال) is a village located in Gojal Tehsil of Hunza District, in the Gilgit–Baltistan region of Pakistan. It lies at an altitude of above sea level and is the highest settlement in the district. It is the largest valley in Gilgit-Baltistan and it covers almost all of Hunza District. It is in the valley of the Shimshal River, a tributary of the Hunza River. Shimshal is a border village that connects the Gilgit-Baltistan area of Pakistan with China. The total area of Shimshal is approximately and there are around two thousand inhabitants with a total of 250 households. Shimshal is made up of four major hamlets: Farmanabad, Aminabad, Center Shimshal, and Khizarabad. Shimshal obtains hydroelectricity from the Odver stream during the warmer months of the year (June to October). Lack of electricity for seven months is a major problem for the local community because during this period they have had to rely on kerosene oil, firewood, solar plates, and compressed natural gas in cylinders as alternatives. A small hydro electricity power station of 0.200MW is under construction at Kuk area of Shimshal that is scheduled to be complete in 2017. The village was inaccessible by motor roads until October 2003, when a new road from the Karakoram Highway at Passu was constructed. It now takes maximum three hours to reach Shimshal by jeep from Passu. Self-help or Nomus (in local Wakhi language) is the major driver for infrastructure development in Shimshal. Shimshalis use numerous seasonal mountain grasslands, located several days walk from the village, to sustain herds of yaks, goats, and sheep. The area was founded by Mamo Singh and his wife named Khudija. The people of Shimshal are Wakhi and they speak the Wakhi language. They belong to the Ismaili sect of Shia Islam. The community follows Aga Khan, a spiritual leader. Shimshal has produced several well-known mountaineers for Pakistan. Among those, Samina Baig is the first women climber from Pakistan to scale Mt. Everest and all highest peaks in seven continents around the globe.
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