Dera Ismail Khan (dāˈrə ĭsmĪlˈ khän) [key], town (1981 pop. 64,358), N central Pakistan, c.1 mi (1.6 km) on the western bank of the Indus River. A district administrative center, it is known for its lacquered woodwork, glass and ivory ware, mats, and sarongs. Newer industries include soap factories and textile, rice, flour, and oil mills. The old town, founded in 1469 by a Baluchi chief, was washed away by the Indus River; the new town was laid out in 1823. The city is seat of Gomal Univ. (est. 1974) and numerous colleges affiliated with Peshawar Univ.
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