Bādghīs (Pashto/Persian: بادغیس) is one of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan. It is located in northwestern Afghanistan, between the Murghab and Hari rivers, extending as far northward as the edge of the desert of Sarakhs. It includes the Chul formations through which the Turkmen-Afghan boundary runs. The province was carved out of portions of Herat Province and Meymaneh Province in 1964 and has a total area of 20,591 km2. It is counted as one of the most underdeveloped of the country's 34 provinces. Qala i Naw, a small town halfway between Maimana and Herat, serves as the provincial center.
The province was one of the last captured by the Taliban in their military offensive before the American invasion in 2001. The province was quickly retaken by Northern Alliance forces as the United States initiated hostilities, which was followed by a brutal cleansing of the Pashtun minority in the province.
Various influential warlords have traded control of the province in recent years, including:General Ab.Rashid Dostum, Abdul Zahir Naibzadah, Gul Mohammad Arifi, Mohammad Yaqoub Sorkhabi and Qazi Sulaiman Hamid. During the fight against the Taliban, the Northern Alliance commanders received military aid from Shi'ite Iran, fearful of the Sunni Taliban. In one notable incident, Malik temporarily switched his allegiances from Dostum, allowing the Taliban to gain control of the province.
Badghis Province is located in the isolated hills of northwestern Afghanistan and shares its borders with Herat, Ghor, and Faryab provinces as well as Turkmenistan. The province is dominated by the Murghab River in the north and the Hari-Rud River in the south.
Like in the rest of Afghanistan, no exact population numbers are available. According to AIMS and NPS, the population of Badghis consists of 62% Tajik, 28% Pashtun, 5% Uzbek, 3% Turkmen, and 2% Baloch.
Agriculture is the main source of people's income and the existence of Murghab and Hari rivers makes the available land suitable for cultivation. The province faced severe drought during the late 1990s and early 2000s, causing tens of thousands of residents to flee to refugee camps outside Herat. The situation has since improved. Badghis is the leading province in Afghanistan in pistachio production. It is also one of the carpet-making capitals of the country.
Badghis Province suffers from a lack of adequate transportation. A single airport exists at the provincial seat--Qala i Naw Airport (QAQN), which is capable of handling light aircraft. Work on 233 km started from Muqur district, Badghis province started in 2012 with an initial cost of $ 365 million will be constructed; to links the Northern provinces of Afghanistan with western provinces through Badghis province. The construction of this road will start from Sabzak pass and will continue up to Faryab province with a completion date of four years by a Turkish construction company. The cost of this road will be paid and funded by Asian Development Bank, with more than $50 million has already been paid by the Asian Development Bank for security of the staff that are working in this road. By launching this project work opportunity will be provided for more ten thousand people in this province.
- Afghanistan Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development: Badghis Provincial Profile
- Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Badghis". Encyclopædia Britannica 3 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
- C. E. Bosworth; D. Balland. "BAÚD¨GÚÈS". In Ehsan Yarshater. Encyclopædia Iranica. United States: Columbia University. Retrieved 2007-12-19.
- Qala-i-Naw Airport at the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation