Generally, a tehsil consists of a city or town that serves as its headquarters, possibly additional towns, and a number of villages. As an entity of local government, it exercises certain fiscal and administrative power over the villages and municipalities within its jurisdiction. It is the ultimate executive agency for land records and related administrative matters. Its chief official is called the tehsildar or less officially the talukdar or taluka muktiarkar.
Taluka or tehsil can be called suburbs. Tehsil and taluka and their variants are used as English words without further translation. Since these terms are unfamiliar to English speakers outside of the subcontinent, the word county has sometimes been provided as a gloss, on the basis that a tehsil, like a county, is an administrative unit hierarchically above the local city, town, or village, but subordinate to a larger state or province. However, India and Pakistan have two (or more, at least in parts of India) intermediate levels of hierarchy — the district and the tehsil, both of which are sometimes glossed as county. In neither case is the analogy very precise in specific details.
In India the term tehsil is only used in some states. For details see the corresponding article.
See also: Subdivisions of Pakistan
In Pakistan, the term tehsil is generally used except in Sindh where the term taluka (Urdu: تعلقه) predominates, e.g., Larkana Taluka. The tehsil is the second-lowest tier of local government in Pakistan; each tehsil is part of a larger District (zila/zilah (Urdu: ضلع)). Each tehsil is subdivided into a number of union councils.
In the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, tehsil has the same meaning as explained above except in Malakand Division, where a district (zila/Zilah) has two or more subdivisions and a subdivision has two or more tehsils. The subdivisions in Malakand Division are about the same as tehsils in the rest of the country.