History of Farah Province

-The ancient city of Fareydun Shahr means “City of Fareydoon”. It is located in this province; it is believed that this city is more than 3,000 years old. The name “Fareydun” has been taken from the Persian book Shahnameh. It was ruled by the Persian Sistan Empire and it is one of the most ancient places of Persian Kings.

In 500 BC the area was known as “Drangiana”. On its east and north was the Arachosia Empire & the Arian Empire respectively. It was ruled by Median Empire and after that Achaemenids Empire. In 330 BC Alexander the Great invaded and made this land a part of his Empire. In 323 BC after his death, his Empire starts falling when generals of his army started vying to be his successor. Some of these generals remained successful in splitting his empire and becoming his official successor. One of these generals was Seleucus, who got this region along with some other nearby territories. He named his domain “Selecuid Empire”.

After Seleucus it was ruled by various other rulers and eventually fell to Sassanids and later on to Arab Muslims. In 867 AD, the Saffarids came into power in Zaranj and Farah became a part of their empire. By the 10th century, Ghaznivid took possession of the area and made it a part of the Ghaznivid Empire whose capital was in Ghazni. They were defeated by the Ghurids and then after a century, the Mongols invaded the area.

After which Timur took the province and later on lost to Safavid dynasty. Safavid lost it to Uzbeks of Transoxiana, later on in 1600 CE Safavid re-claimed the area along with Herat & Sabzavar after a counter offensive round. In 1709, Afghanistan became independent from Safavids and Farah became a part of the Hotaki Empire. In 1747 Ahmed Shah Durrani seized it and made it a part of the Durrani Empire.

In 19th century when Persian invaded the region, British army passed the province for supporting Afghan forces in Herat. After that in 1978, Marxist revolution began and Farah was one of the cities who witnessed a great level of civilian genocide by Khalqi communists. In the start of 1980s, the majority of Farah population was allied with the Harakat-i-Inqliab-e-Islami movement, but soon after that, by 1981 it was split on Language basis; Pashtuns allied with Harakat while the Tajiks joined Jamiat-e-Islami.

In 1992 the government of Domestic Republic of Afghanistan collapsed but even in such hard days Farah remained a peaceful province as the majority of Farah Mujahedeen belonged to Harakat Islamia. As it was an isolated area, Taliban did not put too much focus on it. Due to this the area was controlled by locals. The local authority of Farah province was cooperative so eight United Nation Development Programs (UNDP) were initiated. This included the construction of schools for boys and girls.

Farah did witnessed furies fight between Taliban and US troops after 2001. Due to heavy combat, the area was considered as one of the most insecure provinces. The insurgent gangs use the area for moving through provinces and that’s why occupy part of the province for a short period of time. These trespassers increased as International Assistance Security Forces (IASF) start putting pressure on Taliban in the south.

The roads of Farah province have been improved a lot; the education sector also witnessed an improvement compared to last few decades. As per Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT), a large number of illegal weapons have been collected and destroyed.

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