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Karachi is the largest city, seaport and the financial capital of Pakistan. It is the twentieth largest city of the world in terms of metropolitan population, and is Pakistan's premier centre of banking, industry, and trade. Karachi is also the home of Pakistan's largest corporations that are involved in entertainment, arts, fashion, advertising, publishing, software development and medical research. It also serves as a major hub of higher education in South Asia, and the wider Islamic World.

Karachi enjoys its prominent position due to its geographical location on a bay, making it the financial capital of the country. It is one of the fastest growing cities of South Asia. It was the original capital of Pakistan until the construction of Islamabad, and is the location of the Port of Karachi and nearby Port Bin Qasim, one of the region's largest and busiest ports. The city's population has increased dramatically after the Partition of British India forced hundreds of thousands of Urdu speaking "Mohajirs" (refugees from India) to settle in the city. Since independence from Britain in 1947, the city's vibrant economy has attracted migrants from all over Pakistan, surrounding countries such as Iran, Tajikistan, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Afghanistan and further beyond. Despite a history of political turmoil, the city continues to attract those seeking prosperity and has shown consistent growth.

Karachi city is spread over 3,530 km² (1,363 sq mi) in area. It is locally known as the "City of Lights"  for its liveliness, and the "City of the Quaid" having been the birth and burial place of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, who also made the city his home after Pakistan's independence.



Famous places in Karachi

Karachi is home to some of Pakistan's important cultural institutions. The National Academy of Performing Arts, located in the newly renovated Hindu Gymkhana offers a two year diploma course in performing arts that include classical music and contemporary theatre. The All Pakistan Music Conference, linked to the 45-year old similar institution in Lahore, has been holding its Annual Music Festival since its inception in 2004. The Festival is now a well-established feature of the city life of Karachi that is attended by more than 3000 citizens of Karachi as well as people from other cities .

The National Arts Council (Koocha-e-Saqafat) also has musical performances and Mushaira (poetry recitations).

The Kara Film Festival organized annually showcases independent Pakistani and international films and documentaries.

Karachi has many museums including the Mohatta Palace Museum that regularly has exhibitions as well as the National Museum of Pakistan. Karachi Expo Centre hosts many regional and international exhibitions.

The everyday lifestyle of Karachi differs substantially from that of other Pakistani towns. The culture of Karachi is characterized by the blending of Middle Eastern, Central Asian, South Asian and Western influences, as well as the status of the city as a major international business centre. Karachi also hosts the largest middle class stratum of the country.


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