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Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (Retd.)

Bolor was one of Buddhist places visited by Xuanzang in 631 AD. Bolor has been identified with the modern Balti, or Little Tibet by Alexander Cunningham.[1]

Variants of name

Jat clan

Jat History

Bhim Singh Dahiya [2] writes with reference to Alberuni, who mentions various Jat clans whom he styled as Turkish tribes. The Bolor (Bhullar, the Bhatta (Bhatti of today), etc., are mentioned by Alberuni.[3]


Bolor-Tagh is an old name for the longitudinal range in eastern Pamir Mountains (ancient Mount Imeon) extending from Kunlun Mountains in the south to the east extremity of the Trans-Alay Range in the north. Highest peaks Kongur Tagh (7649 m) and Muztagh Ata.

Bolor-Tagh lies entirely in the Xinjiang province of western China. Marco Polo visited the area in 1271 during his travel to China, describing it under the name of ‘Bolor’.

Visit by Xuanzang in 631 AD

Alexander Cunningham[4] writes about 8. Bolor or Balti: From Darel Hwen Thsang travelled 500 li, or 83 miles, over a mountain range, and up the valley of the Indus to Po-lu-lo, or Bolor. This district was 4000 li, or 666 miles, in circuit; its greatest length being from east to west. It was surrounded by snowy mountains, and produced a large quantity of gold. This account of the route, compared with the bearing

[p.84]: and distance, show that Po-lu-lo must be the modern Balti, or Little Tibet, which is undoubtedly correct, as the people of the neighbouring Dardu districts on the Indus know Balti only by the name of 'Palolo[5] Balti also is still famous for its gold washings. The name, too, is an old one, as Ptolemy calls the people Bύλταί, or Byltae. Lastly, both in size and position Balti corresponds exactly with the account of the Chinese pilgrim, as the length of the province is along the course of the Indus from east to west for 150 miles, and the breadth about 80 miles from the mountains of Deoseh to the Karakoram range, or altogether 460 miles in circuit, as measured direct on the map, or about 600 miles by road measurement.