Chaukhandi Tombs

Posted in : Sindh, Karachi, Archaeological Sites

(added few years ago!)

The Chaukhandi tombs are situated 29 km east of Karachi on N-5 National Highway near Landhi Town in Pakistan. The Chaukhandi tombs are remarkable for the elaborate and exquisite stone carving.

The style of architecture is typical only to the region of Sindh, and unique in that it is found nowhere else in the Islamic world. Generally, the elements are attributed to Jokhio (also spelt Jokhiya) also known as the family graveyard of Jokhio tribe, some people of Baluch tribe also buried were built between the 15th and 18th centuries.


This type of graveyard, in Sindh and Baluchistan, is unique with their orientation from south to north. These graves are constructed in buff sandstone. Their carved decoration presents exquisite craftsmanship. These graves are constructed either as single graves or as groups of up to eight graves raised on a common platform.
Their primary sarcophagus has six vertical slabs, with two long slabs standing on each side of the grave covering the length of the body and the remaining two vertical slabs covering the head and foot side. These six slabs are covered by a second sarcophagus consisting of six more vertical slabs similar but in size giving the grave a pyramid shape. This upper (second sarcophagus) is further covered with four or five horizontal slabs and the topmost (third) sarcophagus is set vertically with its northern end carved into a knob known as a crown or a turban. These tombs are embellished, besides with geometrical designs and motifs, with figural representations such as mounted horsemen, hunting scenes, arms, jewellery etc..
19th century
The earliest passing reference about Chaukhandi tombs (aka Jokundee) in the Western world is available in a letter which J. Macleod had addressed to H. B. E. Frere in 1851. The tombs, however, were given serious attention by H. D. Baskerville, Assistant Collectorof Thatta in Karachi district in 1917. The tombs near Landhi were brought with the pale of the Ancient Monuments Preservation Act, 1904 in the year 1922.

Tags : Chaukhandi, tombs, Karachi, Baluch, Jokhio tribe,

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