Wednesday, June 10, 2009

BANGLADESH CITIES

BANGLADESH CITIES:

DHAKA:


Dhaka is the capital and largest city of Bangladesh. Today's Dhaka has a long story of evolution. It was founded during the 10th century. It served as the Mughal capital of Bengal from 1608 to 1704.Before coming under British rule in 1765 it was a trading center for British, French, and Dutch colonialism . In 1905 it was again named the capital of Bengal, and in 1956 it became the capital of East Pakistan. During the Bangladesh war of independence in1971 the city suffered a heavy damage. In 1982 the spelling was changed from ' Dacca' to 'Dhaka'.

Dhaka is located in the geographic center of the country. It is in the great deltaic region of the Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers. The city is within the monsoon climate zone, with an annual average temperature of 25 deg C (77 deg F) and monthly means varying between 18 deg C (64 deg F) in January and 29 deg C (84 deg F) in August. Nearly 80% of the annual average rainfall of 1,854 mm (73 in) occurs between May and September.

Dhaka is located in one of the world's leading rice- and jute-growing regions. Its industries include textiles (jute, muslin, cotton) and food processing, especially rice milling. A variety of other consumer goods are also manufactured here. The Muslim influence is reflected in the more than 700 mosques and historic buildings found throughout the city. The University of Dhaka (1921) and several technical schools and museums are located here.

Attractions of Dhaka

Mosques : Dhaka has several hundred mosques. Prominent are Baitull Mukarram-National Mosque, the seven Domed Mosque (17th century), Star Mosque (18th century) , Chawkbazar Mosque and Huseni Dalan Mosque.

Lalbagh Fort : It was built in 1678 A.D. by Prince Mohammad Azam, son of Mughal emperor Aurangazeb. The fort was the scene of bloody battle during the first war of independence (1857) when 260 sepoys stationed here backed by the people revolted against British forces. Outstanding among the monuments of the Lalbagh are the tomb of Pari Bibi , Lalbagh Mosque, Audience Hall and Hammam of Nawab Shaista Khan now housing a museum.

Bahadur Shah Park: It was built to commemorate the martyrs of the first liberation war (1857-59) against British rule. It is said that the revolting sepoys and their civil compatriots were publicly hanged here.

Bangabandhu Memorial Museum : The residence of the father of the nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman at Dhanmondi has been turned into a musuam. It contains rare collection of personal effects and photographs of his lifetime.

Mukti Juddha Museum : Situated at Segun Bagicha area of the city the museum contains rare photographs of Liberation war and items used by the freedom fighters during the period.

Ahsan Manzil Museum : On the bank of the river Buriganga in Dhaka the pink majestic Ahsan Manzil has been renovated and turned into a museum recently. It is an example of the nations rich cultural heritage. It was the home of the Nawab of Dhaka and a silent spectator to many events. The renovated Ahsan Manzil is a monument of immense historical beauty. It has 31 rooms with a huge dome atop which can be seen from miles around. It now has 23 galleries displaying portraits, furniture and household articles and utensils used by the Nawab.

Curzon Hall : Beautiful architectural building named after Lord Curzon. It now houses the Science Faculty of Dhaka University.

Old High Court Building : Originally built as the residence of the British Governor, it illustrates a happy blend of European and Mughal architecture.

Dhaka Zoo : Popularly known as Mirpur Zoo. Colorful and attractive collections of different local and foreign species of animals and birds including the majestic Royal Bengal Tiger are available here.

National Museum : Located at the central point of the city, the museum contains a large number of interesting collections including sculptures and paintings of the Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim periods.

Botanical Garden : Built on an area of 205 acres of land at Mirpur and adjacent to Dhaka Zoo. One can have a look at the zoo and the botanical garden in one trip.

National Park : Situated at Rejendrapur, 40 km. north of Dhaka city , this is a vast (1,600 acres) national recreational forest with facilities for picnic and rowing etc.

Shahid Minar : Symbol of Bengali nationalism. This monument was built to commemorate the martyrs of the historic Language movement of 1952. Hundreds and thousands of people with floral wreaths and bouquet gather on 21 February every year to pay respect in a solemn atmosphere. Celebrations begin at zero hour of midnight.

National Poet's Graveyard : Revolutionary poet Kazi Nazrul Islam died on the 29 August 1976 and was buried here. The graveyard is adjacent to the Dhaka University Mosque.

Suhrawardy Uddyan (Garden) : A Popular Park. The oath of independence of Bangladesh was taken here and Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheik Mujibur Rahman gave clarion call for independence on this occasion on the 7th March 1971. The place is famous for its lush verdure and gentle breezes. Eternal Flame to enliven the memory of the martyrs of our Liberation war has been blown here recently.

Mausoleum of National Leaders : Located at the southwestern corner of Suhrawardy Uddyan, it is the eternal resting place of great national leaders, Sher-e-Bangla A.K. Fazlul Haque, Hossain Shahid Suhrawardy and Khaja Nazimuddin.

Banga Bhaban : The official residence of the President, located in the city . One can have an outside view of this grand palace.

Baldha Garden : Unique creation of the late Narendra Narayan Roy, the landlord of Baldha. Year of establishment was 1904. Located in Wari area of Dhaka city, the garden with its rich collection of indigenous and exotic plants is one of the most exciting attraction for naturalists and tourists.

Ramna Green: A vast stretch of green garden surrounded by a serpentine lake near the Sheraton Hotel.

Parliament House : Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban (Parliament House) located at Sher-e-Bangla Nagar has distinctive architectural features. Designed by the famous architect Louis I. Kahn, it may be called an architectural wonder of this region.

Science Museum : The museum is a modern learning center related to the latest scientific discoveries. It is situated at Agargaon.

National Memorial : It locates at Savar, 35, km. from Dhaka city. The memorial designed by architect Moinul Hossain is dedicated to the sacred memory of the millions of unknown martyrs of the war of liberation.

Dhaka
Dhaka skyline
Dhaka skyline
Nickname(s): City of Mosques
Dhaka is located in Bangladesh
Dhaka
Dhaka
Location of Dhaka, Bangladesh
Coordinates: 23°42′0″N 90°22′30″E / 23.7°N 90.375°E / 23.7; 90.375Coordinates: 23°42′0″N 90°22′30″E / 23.7°N 90.375°E / 23.7; 90.375
Country Bangladesh
Administrative District Dhaka District
Government
- Mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka
Area
- City 153.84 km2 (59.4 sq mi)
Population (2007)[1]
- City 6,737,774
- Density 43,797.3/km2 (113,434.5/sq mi)
- Metro 12,295,728
Time zone BST (UTC+6)
This article contains Indic text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks or boxes, misplaced vowels or missing conjuncts instead of Indic text.

Dhaka (Bangla: ঢাকা, pronounced [ɖʱaka])— formerly Dacca and Jahangir Nagar, is the capital of Bangladesh and the principal city of Dhaka District. Dhaka is a megacity and one of the major cities of South Asia. Located on the banks of the Buriganga River, Dhaka, along with its metropolitan area, has a population of over 12 million, making it the largest city in Bangladesh.Dhaka is known as the City of Mosques and renowned for producing the world's finest muslin. As a cosmopolitan city, Dhaka has been the center of Persio-Arabic and Western cultural influences in eastern Indian Subcontinent. Today it serves as one of the prime centers for culture, education and business in the region.

Under Mughal rule in the 17th century, the city was known as Jahangir Nagar. It was a provincial capital and a centre of the worldwide muslin trade. The modern city, however, was developed chiefly under British rule in the 19th century, and became the second-largest city in Bengal after Calcutta (presently Kolkata). After the Partition of Bengal in 1905, Dhaka became the capital of the new province of Eastern Bengal and Assam but lost its status as a provincial capital again after the partition was annulled in 1911. After the partition of India in 1947, Dhaka became the administrative capital of East Pakistan, and later, in 1972, the capital of an independent Bangladesh. During the intervening period, the city witnessed widespread turmoil; this included many impositions of martial law, the declaration of Bangladesh's independence, military suppression, devastation during war, and natural calamities.

Modern Dhaka is the center of political, cultural and economic life in Bangladesh.Although its urban infrastructure is the most developed in the country, Dhaka suffers from urban problems such as pollution, congestion, and lack of adequate services due to the rising population. In recent decades, Dhaka has seen modernization of transport, communications and public works. The city is attracting large foreign investments and greater volumes of commerce and trade. It is also experiencing an increasing influx of people from across the nation. Dhaka is consistently ranked as one of the least livable cities in the world.


History

Lalbagh Fort, constructed in the mid 17th century by Shaista Khan

The existence of urbanized settlements in the area that is now Dhaka dates from the 7th century. The city area was ruled by the Buddhist kingdom of Kamarupa and the Pala Empire before passing to the control of the Hindu Sena dynasty in the 9th century. The name of the city may have derived after the establishment of the Goddess Dhakeshwari's temple by Ballal Sena in the 12th century. Dhaka and its surrounding area was identified as Bengalla around that period. The town itself consisted of a few market centers like Lakshmi Bazar, Shankhari Bazar, Tanti Bazar, Patuatuli, Kumartuli, Bania Nagar and Goal Nagar. After the Sena dynasty, Dhaka was successively ruled by the Turkic and Pashtun governors descending from the Delhi Sultanate before the arrival of the Mughals in 1608.

The development of townships and a significant growth in population came as the city was proclaimed the capital of Bengal under Mughal rule in 1608. Mughal subahdar Islam Khan was the first administrator of the city.Khan named the town "Jahangir Nagar" (City of Jahangir) in honor of the Mughal emperor Jahangir, although this name was dropped soon after Jahangir's death. The main expansion of the city took place under Mughal general Shaista Khan.[9][10] The city then measured 19 by 13 kilometres (12 by 8 mi), with a population of nearly one million people. The city passed to the control of the British East India Company in 1765 after the Battle of Plassey. The city's population shrank dramatically during this period as the prominence of Kolkata rose, but substantive development and modernisation eventually followed. A modern civic water supply system was introduced in 1874 and electricity supply launched in 1878.The Dhaka Cantonment was established near the city, serving as a base for British and Bengali soldiers.

Ahsan Manzil was once the palace of the Dhaka Nawab Family; it is now a museum.

During the abortive Partition of Bengal in 1905, Dhaka was declared to be the capital of the newly established state of East Bengal and Assam, but Bengal was reunited in 1911.[8][9][10] Following the Partition of India in 1947, Dhaka became the capital of East Pakistan. The city witnessed major communal violence following the partition of India. A large proportion of the city's Hindu population departed for India, while the city received a large influx of Muslims. As the center of regional politics, however, Dhaka saw an increasing number of political strikes and incidents of violence. The adoption of Urdu as the sole official language of Pakistan led to protest marches involving large crowds. Known as the Bengali Language Movement, the protests resulted in police firing which killed a number of peaceful student demonstrators.Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Dhaka remained a hotbed of political activity, and the demands for autonomy for the Bengali population gradually gained momentum.

houses the national parliament.

The 1970 Bhola cyclone devastated much of the region, killing an estimated 500,000 people.More than half the city was flooded and millions of people were marooned. With public anger growing against ethnic discrimination and poor cyclone relief efforts from the central government, Bengali politician Sheikh Mujibur Rahman held a nationalist gathering on March 7, 1971 at the Race Course Ground. An estimated one million people attended the gathering, leading to the March 26 declaration of Bangladesh's independence. In response, the Pakistan Army launched Operation Searchlight, which led to the arrests, torture and killing of thousands of people.After nine months of bloody battle with Bangladeshi Forces, the Pakistani Army surrendered to the Mitra Bahini on December 16 marking the end of the independence war of Bangladesh. As the nation's capital, Dhaka saw a rapid and massive growth of the city population in the post-independence period, as migrant workers from rural areas across Bangladesh moved to the city. The growth of commerce and industry along with the city's population has created further challenges to services and infrastructure. A real estate boom has followed the expansion of city limits and the development of new settlements such as Uttara, Mohammadpur, Bashundhara, Mirpur and Motijheel.

Geography and climate

Dhaka is located in central Bangladesh at 23°42′0″N 90°22′30″E / 23.7°N 90.375°E / 23.7; 90.375, on the eastern banks of the Buriganga River. The city lies on the lower reaches of the Ganges Delta and covers a total area of 153.84 square kilometres (59.40 sq mi).[25] It consists of seven principal thanasDhanmondi, Kotwali, Motijheel, Paltan, Ramna, Mohammadpur, Sutrapur, Tejgaon – and 16 auxiliary thanas – Gulshan, Lalbagh, Mirpur, Pallabi, Shah Ali, Turaag, Sabujbagh, Dhaka Cantonment, Demra, Hazaribagh, Shyampur, Badda, Kafrul, Kamrangir char, Khilgaon and Uttara. In total the city has 130 wards and 725 mohallas.[26] Dhaka district has an area of 1463.60 square kilometres (565 sq mi); and is bounded by the districts of Gazipur, Tangail, Munshiganj, Rajbari, Narayanganj, Manikganj.[26] Tropical vegetation and moist soils characterise the land, which is flat and close to sea level. This leaves Dhaka susceptible to flooding during the monsoon seasons owing to heavy rainfall and cyclones.[27]

Dhaka experiences a hot, wet and humid tropical climate. The city is within the monsoon climate zone, with an annual average temperature of 25 °C (77 °F) and monthly means varying between 18 °C (64 °F) in January and 29 °C (84 °F) in August. Nearly 80% of the annual average rainfall of 1,854 millimetres (73 in) occurs between May and September. Increasing air and water pollution emanating from traffic congestion and industrial waste are serious problems affecting public health and the quality of life in the city.Water bodies and wetlands around Dhaka are facing extinction as these are being filled up to construct multi-storied buildings and other real estate developments. Coupled with pollution, such erosion of natural habitats threatens to destroy much of the regional biodiversity.


[hide] Weather averages for Dhaka
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 76
(24)
80
(27)
87
(31)
89
(32)
91
(33)
88
(31)
90
(32)
88
(31)
87
(31)
87
(31)
83
(28)
77
(25)
85
(29)
Average low °F (°C) 58
(14)
63
(17)
72
(22)
77
(25)
79
(26)
81
(27)
81
(27)
81
(27)
80
(27)
77
(25)
69
(21)
61
(16)
73
(23)
Precipitation inches (mm) 0.3
(7.6)
0.8
(20.3)
2.3
(58.4)
4.6
(116.8)
10.5
(266.7)
14.1
(358.1)
15.7
(398.8)
12.5
(317.5)
10.1
(256.5)
6.4
(162.6)
1.2
(30.5)
0.2
(5.1)
77.9
(1,978.7)

Civic administration

The Dhaka City Corporation building

The Dhaka municipality was founded on August 1, 1864 and upgraded to "corporation" status in 1978.[ The Dhaka City Corporation is a self-governing corporation which runs the affairs of the city. The incorporated area is divided into several wards, which have elected commissioners. The mayor of the city is elected by popular vote every five years, and the post is presently held by Sadeque Hossain Khoka. The Dhaka Education Board is responsible for administering all public schools and most private schools with the exception of English-medium schools and madrassahs.. All madrassahs in Bangladesh are governed by a central board while English-medium schools are under separate educational and governance structures.

The Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) was established in 1976 and has 6,000 personnel in 12 police stations. With the rapid population growth of the city, the force has been raised to 23,000 personnel and the establishment of 33 police stations has been completed and the creation of another 18 police stations is underway.However, Dhaka suffers from a chronically high crime rate and frequent incidents of political and religious violence. The DMP suffers from lack of equipment and personnel, causing governments to occasionally deploy the Bangladesh Army and paramilitary forces in major efforts to curb crime.

The city is divided into 10 parliamentary constituencies. The two main political parties are the Awami League and the Bangladesh Nationalist Party. Ramna contains the Secretariat, which houses most of the government ministries. The Supreme Court of Bangladesh and the Dhaka High Court are located in the city. The Bangabhaban palace has served as the official residence of the Viceroy of India, the governor of East Pakistan and presently the President of Bangladesh.The Jatiyo Sangshad Bhaban, designed by renowned architect Louis Kahn,[16] houses the unicameral national parliament. The Baitul Mukarram, developed with a design resembling the Kaaba of Mecca, is the national mosque. Other historical monuments in the city include the Bara Katra palace, the Lalbagh Fort, the Hoseni Dalan and the Ahsan Manzil.

To fight rising traffic congestion and population, the national government has recently implemented a policy for rapid urbanisation of surrounding areas and beyond by the introduction of a ten year holiday on income tax for new construction of facilities and buildings outside Dhaka. Aside from Chittagong, Dhaka is the only city in the country with a water-borne sewage system, but this serves only 25% of the population while another 30% are served with septic tanks. Only two-thirds of households in Dhaka are served by the city water supply system. More than 9.7 million tonnes of solid wastes are produced in Dhaka city each year. While private and government efforts have succeeded in collecting garbage city-wide and using it as manure, most solid wastes are often dumped untreated in nearby low-lying areas and water bodies. Dhaka has one of the highest rates of death from infectious disease of any city in Asia.

Economy

Bashundhara City, South Asia's largest shopping mall.

Dhaka is the commercial heart of Bangladesh. The city has a moderate-sized middle class population, driving the market for modern consumer and luxury goods. The city has historically attracted a large number of migrant workers. Hawkers, peddlers, small shops, rickshaw transport, roadside vendors and stalls employ a large segment of the population— rickshaw-drivers alone number as many as 400,000. Half the workforce is employed in household and unorganised labour, while about 800,000 work in the textile industry. Even so, unemployment remains high at 23%.According to CityMayors Statistics, Dhaka's GDP registered at $92 billion in 2008 with an annual growth rate of 7.6%. Its estimated GDP in the year 2020 is $160 billion. The annual per capita income of Dhaka is estimated at $500, with 48% of households living below the poverty line, including a large segment of the population coming from the villages in search of employment, with many surviving on less than $10 a day.

Karwan Bazar, the business district

The main commercial areas of the city include Farmgate, New Market, Gulshan and Motijheel, while Tejgaon and Hazaribagh are the major industrial areas. Bashundhara City is a developing economic area that will include high-tech industries, corporations and a large shopping mall in about 5 years. The Export Processing Zone in Dhaka was set up to encourage the export of garments, textiles and other goods. Dhaka has two EPZ's. They are home to 413 industries, which employ mostly women. The Dhaka Stock Exchange is based in the city, as are most of the large multinationals including Citigroup, HSBC Bank Bangladesh, JPMorgan Chase, Standard Chartered Bank (Bangladesh), American Express, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Total, British Petroleum, Unilever, Nestle, DHL Express, FedEx and British American Tobacco. Large local conglomerates such as Navana Group and Rahimafrooz also have their corporate offices located in Dhaka. Microcredit also began here and the offices of the Nobel Prize winning Grameen Bank and BRAC are based in Dhaka.Urban developments have sparked a widespread construction boom; new high-rise buildings and skyscrapers have changed the city landscape. Growth has been especially strong in the finance, banking, manufacturing, telecommunications and services sectors, while tourism, hotels and restaurants continue as important elements of the Dhaka economy.

Demographics

Dhaka.ogg
Animation showing urban growth in Dhaka, Bangladesh from 1972 to 2001. The animation starts with a global view over India using Terra-MODIS 30 km. true color data. The animation then zooms down to Terra-MODIS 1 km. data over Bangladesh, and dissolves into the December 28, 1972, Landsat-1-MSS data of Dhaka. Dhaka can then be seen growing to its present day size by first showing the February 13, 1989 Landsat-5-TM image which then dissolves into the final January 29, 2001 Landsat-7-ETM+ image.

The population of Dhaka city (areas under the jurisdiction of the Dhaka city corporation) stands at approximately 6.7 million. The city, in combination with localities forming the wider metropolitan area, is home to an estimated 12.3 million as of 2007.The population is growing by an estimated 4.2% per annum, one of the highest rates amongst Asian cities. The continuing growth reflects ongoing migration from rural areas to the Dhaka urban region, which accounted for 60% of the city's growth in the 1960s and 1970s. More recently, the city's population has also grown with the expansion of city boundaries, a process that added more than a million people to the city in the 1980s.

The literacy rate is estimated at 62.3%.The city population is composed of peoples from virtually every region of Bangladesh. The long-standing inhabitants of the old city are known as Dhakaia and have a distinctive dialect and culture. Between 15,000 to 20,000 of the Rohingya, Santal, Khasi, Garo, Chakma and Mandi tribal peoples reside in the city.

Most residents of Dhaka speak Bengali, the national language. Many distinctive Bengali dialects and regional languages such as Chittagonian and Sylheti are also spoken by segments of the population. English is spoken by a large segment of the population, especially for business purposes. Urdu is spoken by members of several non-Bengali communities, including the Biharis.

Islam is the predominant religion, with a majority belonging to the Sunni sect. There are also significant Shia and Ahmadiya communities. Hinduism is the second-largest religion and smaller communities practice Buddhism and Christianity. In recent years there have been rising levels of religious violence.A group of few hundreds are envloved with this. But other than that most of Bangladeshis are very tolerate minded and enjoy freindly religious occasions together, regardless what religion.

Culture

The Tara Masjid (Star Mosque) is noted for its star-studded design

As the most populous city of Bangladesh, Dhaka has a vibrant cultural life. Annual celebrations for Independence Day (March 26), Language Martyrs' Day (February 21) and Victory Day (December 16) are prominently celebrated across the city. Dhaka's people congregate at the Shaheed Minar and the Jatiyo Smriti Soudho to remember the national heroes of the liberation war. These occasions are observed with public ceremonies and rallies in public grounds. Many schools and colleges organise fairs, festivals and concerts in which citizens from all levels of society participate.

Pohela Baishakh, the Bengali New Year, falls annually on April 14 and is popularly celebrated across the city. Large crowds of people gather on the streets of Shahbag, Ramna Park and the campus of the University of Dhaka for celebrations. The most popular dressing style for women are sarees or salwar kameez, while men usually prefer western clothing to the traditional lungi. The Durga Puja is the most important Hindu festival of the year. Large processions of Hindus perform devotional songs, dances, prayers and ceremonies for Goddess Durga. The Muslim festivals of Eid ul-Fitr and Eid ul-Adha witnesses widespread celebrations, with large numbers of Muslims attending prayers in mosques across the city; Dhaka being known as the 'City of Mosques'.

For much of recent history, Dhaka was characterised by roadside markets and small shops that sold a wide variety of goods.Recent years have seen the widespread construction of shopping malls, multiplexes, hotels and restaurants attracting Dhaka's growing middle-class and wealthy residents. Along with Bangladeshi cuisine and South Asian variants, a large variety of Western and Chinese cuisine is served at numerous restaurants and eateries.

Dhakai Bakarkhani is the traditional food/snack of the people of old Dhaka. It is famous for its quality and taste and it was highly praised by the Royal court of the Mughal Empire in Delhi

Despite the growing popularity of music groups and rock bands, traditional folk music remains widely popular. The ghazal songs of artists like Runa Laila and the works of the national poet Kazi Nazrul Islam and national anthem writer Rabindranath Tagore have a widespread following across Dhaka. The Baily Road area is known as Natak Para (Theater Neighborhood) which is the center of Dhaka's thriving theater movement. Indian and Pakistani music and films are popular with large segments of Dhaka's population. This area is also credited for the revival of the Jamdani due to the many local saree stores selling and promoting these locally hand-made age old traditional Bengali sarees. Jamdanis are 100% hand weaved and originate from the Persian and Mughal era. Jamdanis are produced by a traditional high quality cottage industry, which is slowly dying out due to the slow production process. A single medium range Jamdani saree may take as long as 3 months to complete.

Pohela Baishakh (Bangla New Year) celebration in Ramna park.

Bangladesh Betar is the state-run primary provider of radio services, and broadcasts a variety of programming in Bangla and English. In recent years many private radio networks, especially FM radio services, have been established in the city such as Radio Foorti FM 88.0, Radio Today FM 89.6, Radio Amar FM 101.6 and ABC Radio FM 89.2. Bangladesh Television is the state-run broadcasting network that provides a wide variety of programmes in Bangla and English. Cable and satellite networks such as Ekushey Television, Channel I, ATN Bangla, RTV, NTV and STAR TV are amongst the most popular channels. The main offices of most publishing houses in Bangladesh are based in Dhaka. The Prothom Alo and The Daily Ittefaq are the most popular amongst the large number of Bangla language dailies, periodicals and other publications in the city. The Daily Star and The Independent are the largest English-language dailies published.[71] Although cellular phones are gaining popularity, less than 10% of households have telephone access.

Transport

Dhaka is known as the rickshaw capital of the world.Approximately 400,000 rickshaws run each day.

Cycle rickshaws and auto rickshaws are the main mode of transport, with close to 400,000 rickshaws running each day – the largest number for any city in the world.However, only about 85,000 rickshaws are licensed by the city government. Relatively low-cost and non-polluting cycle rickshaws nevertheless cause traffic congestion and have been banned from many parts of the city. Public buses are operated by the state-run Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC) and by private companies and operators. Scooters, taxis and privately owned automobiles are increasingly becoming popular with the city's growing middle class. The government has overseen the replacement of two-stroke engine taxis with "Green taxis" locally called CNG, which run on compressed natural gas.

Dhaka has 1,868 kilometres (1,161 mi) of paved roads. It is connected by highways and railway links to Chittagong, Khulna, Mymensingh, Rajshahi, Faridpur and Sylhet. Highway links to the Indian cities of Kolkata and Agartala have been established by the BRTC which also runs regular bus services to those cities from Dhaka.The Kamalapur Railway Station and the Airport (Biman Bandar) Railway Station are the main railway stations providing trains on suburban and national routes operated by the state-run Bangladesh Railway.The Sadarghat Port on the banks of the Buriganga River serves the transportation of goods and passengers upriver and to other ports in Bangladesh.The Zia International Airport is the largest and busiest in the nation.

Education

Curzon Hall of the University of Dhaka.

Dhaka has the largest number of schools, colleges and universities of any Bangladeshi city. The education system is divided into 4 levels: Primary (from grades 1 to 5), Secondary (from grades 6 to 10), Higher Secondary (from grades 11 to 12) and tertiary. The five years of lower secondary education concludes with a Secondary School Certificate (SSC) Examination. Students who pass this examination proceed to two years of Higher Secondary or intermediate training, which culminate in a Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) Examination. Education is mainly offered in Bangla, but English is also commonly taught and used. A large number of Muslim families send their children to attend part-time courses or even to pursue full-time religious education, which is imparted in Bangla and Arabic in madrasahs.

The Dhaka College is the oldest institution of higher education in the city and amongst the earliest established in British India, founded in 1840. Since independence, Dhaka has seen the establishment of a large number of public and private colleges and universities that offer undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as a variety of doctoral programmes.The University of Dhaka is the largest public university in the nation with more than 30,000 students and 1,300 faculty staff. The university has 18 research centres and 70 departments, faculties and institutes. Eminent seats of higher education include the Jahangirnagar University and the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET). The Dhaka Medical College and the Sir Salimullah Medical College are amongst the largest and most respected medical schools in the nation. Dhaka's college campuses are often hotbeds of political conflicts. Protests and strikes, and violence amongst police, students and political groups frequently disrupt public university campuses.

Sports

Cricket and football are the two most popular sports in Dhaka and across the nation. Teams are fielded in intra-city and national competitions by a large number of schools, colleges and private entities. The Mohammedan Sports Club and Abahani are two of the most famous football and cricket teams, maintaining a fierce rivalry.

Dhaka has the distinction of having hosted the first official test cricket match of the Pakistan cricket team in 1954 against India. The Bangabandhu National Stadium was formerly the main venue for domestic and international cricket matches, but now exclusively hosts football matches. It is a potential host for the opening ceremony of the 2011 Cricket World Cup as well as host to 6 matches to be played in Bangladesh. The Bangladesh Sports Control Board, responsible for promoting sports activities across the nation is based in Dhaka. Dhaka also has stadiums largely used for domestic events such as the Sher-e-Bangla Mirpur Stadium (in Mirpur), the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium and the Outer Stadium Ground.[95] The Dhaka University Ground hosts many intercollegiate tournaments.

CHITTAGONG:

Chittagong is the port city with a population of 1,750,000 (1986 est.). It is the commercial and manufacturing center of Bangladesh. Situated on the Karnaphuli river some 19 km (12 mi) from its mouth at the Bay of Bengal, it is the chief port of the country. It provides an extensively developed port facilities for ocean steamers.

An ancient city, Chittagong passed from Tippera (Buddhist) dominance to Arakan (Hindu) and then Mogul (Muslim) rule, with periods of re-conquest and re-control. The Portuguese made inroads in the 16th century, and the British gained control in 1760.

Industries powered by a hydroelectric plant up the river, use the products of the area--jute, cotton, rice, tea, petroleum (from offshore installations), and bamboo. The bamboo is harvested chiefly from the Chittagong Hill tracts. 13,191 sq km (5,093 sq mi) of rugged, thickly forested land along the Bay of Bengal is inhabited by primitive mountain tribes.

Chittagong has a picturesque setting. Its green hills and forests, broad sandy beaches and fine cool climate always attract holiday makers. It combines the hum of a restless seaport with the pleasure of a charming hill-town with its undulating topography. It attracts tourists from around the world. It is surrounded by the bay, the river, and hills high up to 1,200 m (4,000 ft) from sea level. Rainfall averages 2,870 mm annually. Average annual temperature is 26 deg C (78 deg F).

PLACES OF INTEREST :

Shrine of Bayazid Bostami : This holy shrine of saint Bayazid Bostami attracts a large number of visitors and pilgrims. At its base there is a large pond with several hundred tortoises floating in the water.

World war II Cemetery : In this well-preserved cemetery at quiet and picturesque place lie buried over 700 soldiers from commonwealth countries and Japan.

Foy's Lake : Set amidst panoramic surroundings with an intercourse of hills and lakes this is an ideal spot for outings and picnics.

Ethnological Museum : A unique treasure house of variety of tribal culture and heritage of Bangladesh.

Court Building : Situated on the Fairy Hill, this building commands a magnificent bird's eye view of Chittagong city that gives a panoramic look at night.

Patenga and Fouzdarhat Sea Beaches: Patenga beach is about 22 Km. from Chittagong and is approachable by a motorable road. On the way to the beach one passes the Patenga Airport. Another ideal picnic spot is the Fouzdarhat sea beach about 16 km. from Chittagong.

Sitakunda : About 40 km. from Chittagong. This is famous for the Chandranath Hindu Temple -one of the oldest temple in the subcontinent and the Buddhist Temple having a footprint of lord Buddha. Jhese places particularly the hilltops are regarded as very secred by the Hindus and Buddhists. Shiva Chaturdashi festival is held every years in Feloeuary when thousand pilgrimus assemble for the celebration which lasts about ten days. There is a hot water spring 5 km. to the north of Sitakunda.

Other places of interest include shrine of Shah Amanat, Shahi Jame Mosque, Chandanpura Mosque, Portuguese Arsenal, Port Area, Marine Academy and Biponi Bitan.



Chittagong
Nickname(s): Chottala
Location of Chittagong in Bangladesh
Location of Chittagong in Bangladesh
Coordinates: 22°22′0″N 91°48′0″E / 22.36667°N 91.8°E / 22.36667; 91.8
Country Bangladesh
Administrative District Chittagong District
Government
- Mayor Mohiuddin Ahmed
Area
- City 157 km2 (60.6 sq mi)
Population (2007 est.)[1]
- City 3,720,440
- Density 24,969/km2 (64,669.4/sq mi)
- Metro 3,720,440
Time zone BST (UTC+6)
Website http://www.chittagong-website.com/

Chittagong (Bengali: চট্টগ্রাম, Chôţţogram) is Bangladesh's main seaport and its second-largest city. The capital of the eponymous district and division, it is situated in the southeastern portion of the country, and was built on the banks of the Karnaphuli River, which ends nearby, in the Bay of Bengal. The city has a population over 3.5 million and is constantly growing. Much of the city is surrounded by hilly terrains. The Chittagong Hill Tracts range is situated nearby.

Being the country's primary port, Chittagong is the main route for almost all of Bangladesh's import and export, generating a major portion of the country's annual revenue and being its commercial center[Its harbor contains extensively developed port facilities and is particularly suitable for ocean steamers. Two large environmental centers ("ecoparks"), catering to ecology and forestry-related research, have recently been built in neighboring Sitakunda and Bashkhali.


History

Chittagong has been a seaport since ancient times. Arabs traded with the port from the 9th century AD. The Chittagong region was under the kingdom of Arakan during the sixth and seventh centuries. Before Muslim rule, Chittagong had been either under the control of the Arakans or under the kings of Burma. Sultan Fakruddin Mubarak Shah of Sonargaon conquered Chittagong in 1340. After the defeat of Sultan Giasuddin Mahmud Shah in the hands of Sher Shah in1538, the Arakanese again captured Chittagong. From this time onward until its conquest by the Mughals this region was under the control of the Portuguese and the Magh pirates. The Mughal Commandar Bujurg Umed Khan expelled the Portuguese from the area in 1666 and established Mughal rule there. The Mughals renamed Chittagong as Islamabad. The city was occupied by Burmese troops shortly in First Anglo-Burmese War in 1824.

On 18th April 1930, the revolutionaries looted the Chittagong armory under the leadership of Masterda Surya Sen. During this time the leaders of the women revolutionaries were Pritilata Waddedar, Bina Das, Lila Ray, Kalpana Dutta etc. In 1971, The Declaration of Independence of Bangladesh was announced from Swadhin Bangla Betar Kendra located at Kalurghat, Chittagong.

The explorer Ibn Battuta passed through Chittagong during his travels.

Geography and climate

Chittagong is located at 22°22′0″N, 91°48′0″E on the banks of the Karnaphuli River. It has a total area of 157 square kilometers (61 sq mi). The city is known for its vast hilly terrain that stretches throughout the entire district and eventually into India. Chittagong does not contain any natural lakes, but it does have artificial lakes.

Civil administration

Chittagong is a Divisional Headquarters for the Chittagong Division. The Divisional Commissioner is the Highest Ranking Government Official and is the chief coordinator of all 11 Districts. He is assisted with 3 Additional Divisional Commissioners. The Chittagong District has a District Commissioner. The city areas are divided into several wards and mahallas, under the jurisdiction of the Chittagong City Corporation.

People and culture

The people of the city are diverse and multi-ethnic, and the native Bengali and Tibeto-Burman populations have had significant influence from Arab, Afghan, and Mughal traders and settlers, all of whom had travelled in the city after arriving on its shores many hundreds of years ago. There are many Tibeto-Burman tribes that have been influenced by Bengali culture also living there, such as the Chakma people. The descendants of Portuguese settlers, known as the Firingi, also continue to live in Chittagong, as Catholic Christians, in the old Portuguese enclave of Paterghatta. Chittagong is home to many of the historic Christians of Bangladesh. In 1927, the city was made the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Chittagong.

Chittagong is also home to several of the most renowned universities of Bangladesh, Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology (CUET), the International Islamic University Chittagong, the Chittagong University, established in 1966, Southern University Bangladesh, Mehedibagh, Chittagong established in the year 1998, the Chittagong College being notable examples. It also contains many madrasas (Islamic educational schools) within its borders. Hazrat Fate Ali Ra was a famous saint of Islam, born in Chittagong.

Chittagong is the home town of Dr. Mohammad Yunus, founder of Grameen Bank, the pioneer of Microcredit, who won Nobel Prize in Peace in 2006.

Economy and development


Port of Chittagong

The sea-borne exports consist chiefly of ready made garments, knitwear, frozen food, jute and jute goods, leather and leather products, tea, and chemical products. There is also a large trade by country boats, bringing chiefly cotton, rice, spices, sugar and tobacco. Ship breaking was introduced to the area in 1969. This industry is concentrated at Fauzdarhat, a 16 kilometers (10 mi) long beach 20 kilometers (12 mi) north-west of Chittagong. Poor environmental standards produce unsafe labour conditions for ship-breaking workers and release dangerous or poisonous substances, such as asbestos and PCBs, into the environment. Chittagong is home to a large number of industries from small to heavy. It has automobile industries, oil refinery, pharmaceutical plants, chemical plants, export processing zones, steel mills etc. The privately owned Korean export processing zone is also located in Chittagong.

The city of Chittagong had been long neglected by the Bangladeshi government, until the turn of the century when exports grew by 21.13% to an all time high of $8.02 billion.. Chittagong is the site of Bangladesh's busiest port which handles 80% of all Bangladeshi imports and exports. The strategic location of the port has allowed for interest by investors to help improve the city. Major business houses such as M.M Ispahani, A.K Khan and Co. , Habib Group, PHP Group, KDS Group , S. Alam Group, Mostafa Group and T.K Group are all residents of Chittagong.

Ship breaking near Chittagong, Bangladesh

Agrabad is often known as Chittagong's chief commercial region. Several companies such as HSBC and Standard Chartered have offices stationed in the city. Numerous investments have allowed for a construction boom similar to Dhaka. Over the years, scores of hotels, shopping centers, and other modern buildings have sprung up to change the face of the city. Ongoing developments include various multi-story shopping malls and a Chittagong World Trade Centre[

According to CityMayors Statistics Chittagong registered a GDP of $16 billion in 2005 with an annual growth rate of 6.3%. It is estimated that in 2020 the GDP of Chittagong will be $39 billion.

Education

Chittagong is home to two of the nation's most prominent public universities, and is the site of Bangladesh's one of the largest universities, the University of Chittagong, established in 1966. The university is located in a remote place from the city (22 km north) of Chittagong. Therefore, it has free shuttle trains service from 7:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M. for students. There are bus services for the faculties and other staffs. With a modest beginning of 4 departments in 1966, the University of Chittagong has grown to 8 individual faculties, 35 departments, 3 institutes and 3 research centres. It has 3 affiliated Medical colleges under the Faculty of Medicine and 1 Veterinary Medicine College under the faculty of Veterinary Medicine. The veterinary medical college has recently been upgraded into a separate University. As such the number of faculties at present is 7. Current student enrolment is more than 15,000.

The another public university is Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology, established in 1968. CUET, with only about 2100 students and 8 academic departments, strongly emphasis in theoretical, applied, and interdisciplinary scientific and technological education. In addition to these, the university undertakes research works sponsored by local industries and national/international organizations, such as United Nations Organizations, Commonwealth Foundation, University Grants Commission, etc. As a center of excellence, CUET is not only continuing as the focal point for the development and dissemination of engineering and technological know-how within the country, but also it is involved to solve complicated practical problems of national importance faced by the planners, engineers and technologists of the country. The University is situated by the side of the Chittagong-Kaptai road some 25 kilometers off from the center of Chittagong City.

Recently Chittagong Govt Veterinary College(CGVC) has been upgraded to Chittagong Veterinary and Animal Sciences University(CVASU) which is consisting of one faculty with 300 students providing theoretical, out campus work based learning and excellent scientific and technological education. It is the first university in Bangladesh of this type.

Chittagong has public, denominational, and independent schools. Public schools, including pre-schools, primary and secondary schools, and special schools are administered by the Ministry of Education and Board of Education.

Transport

Transport in Chittagong is similar to that of Bangladesh's capital, Dhaka. There are various bus systems, taxis, and as well as smaller 'baby' or 'CNG' taxis, which are basically tricycle-structured motor vehicles. There are also traditional manual rickshaws, which are very common.

Chittagong has a station on the narrow gauge eastern section of the Bangladesh Railway. The headquarters of this railway are located here. There are main two railway stations in Station road Chittagong. Trains are available traveling to the Bangladeshi cities of Dhaka, Shylhet, Comilla, and Bhairav.

Shah Amanat International Airport serves as Chittagong's international airport. It is the second busiest airport in Bangladesh. It has international service to destinations such as Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Jeddah, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Ras Al Khaimah, Kolkata, Yangon, Muscat, Bangkok and Kuala lumpur. It was formerly known as MA Hannan International Airport, but was renamed on April 2, 2005 by the Government of Bangladesh. Major airlines that serve the airport include Biman Bangladesh Airlines, Best Air, Thai Airways International, GMG Airlines, Air Arabia, RAK Airways, United Airways, Oman Air and Royal Bengal Air.

Chittagonian

Many Chittagong natives speak Chittagonian (চাটগাঁইয়া Chaţgaiã), an Indo-European language of the Eastern Indic group. Many speakers consider their language to be a dialect of standard Bengali, the official language of Bangladesh. However, the two languages are not mutually intelligible, meaning that those who only know how to speak Standard Bengali will not understand Chittagonian speakers, and vice versa - normally the metric for languagehood among linguists. There is, however, a dialect continuum between Chittagonian and neighboring dialects of Bengali, meaning that speakers of each neighboring dialect can largely understand each other, while speakers of more distant dialects cannot. Chittagonian has approximately 14 million speakers. According to the status of Top 100 Languages by Population by Ethnologue, Chittagong ranked in 67th Language of the world.[8]

Sister Cities

See also

KHULNA:


Khulna is a divisional city in southwestern Bangladesh. Khulna lies along the Bhairab River. The city stands on the bank of Rupsha. An important river port and produce collection and trade center, it is connected by river steamer, road, and rail to the major cities of the southern Gangetic delta. Shipyards are located 3 miles (5 km) south, on the Kazibacha River.

Forest products from the Sundarbans supply Khulna's industries, which include jute, oilseed, cotton-textile, paper, and board mills and match and newsprint factories. Khulna has a university, a Medical college, a BIT, a Cantonment ( Zahanabad Sena Nibash not with a full division ), a Naval Base ( BNS Titumir) , the country's only Telephone Cable and Newsprint industry. Country's largest Ship building industry is also there.

Khulna was constituted a municipality in 1884. Khulna Division consists of the districts of Khulna, Satkhira, Bagerhat, Jessore, Jhinaidah, Magura, Narail, Kustia, Chuadanga, and Meherpur. The district of Khulna has 14 upazilas. Its area is 4394.46 sq. km. and population 20,10643.

This article is about the city. For the district, see Khulna District. For the division, see Khulna Division.
Khulna
Location of Khulna in Bangladesh
Location of Khulna in Bangladesh
Coordinates: 22°49′0″N 89°33′0″E / 22.81667°N 89.55°E / 22.81667; 89.55Coordinates: 22°49′0″N 89°33′0″E / 22.81667°N 89.55°E / 22.81667; 89.55
Country Bangladesh
Administrative District Khulna District
Government
- Mayor Talukder Abdul Khaleque
Area
- City 59.57 km2 (23 sq mi)
Population (2007 est.)[1]
- City 842,995
- Density 14,151/km2 (36,650.9/sq mi)
- Metro 1,355,354
Time zone BST (UTC+6)

Khulna is the third largest city in Bangladesh. It is located on the banks of the Rupsha and Bhairab rivers in Khulna District. It is the capital of Khulna Division and a major industrial and commercial center. It has a seaport named Mongla on its outskirts, 38 km from Khulna City. The population of the city, under the jurisdiction of the City Corporation, was 842,995 in 2007. The wider Statistical Metropolitan Area had at the same time an estimated population of 1,355,354

The city is 333 km southwest of Bangladesh's capital Dhaka, to which it is connected by air, road, train and water transportation. The steamer fleet for this route includes the ancient ships Tern (1912), Osrich and Lepcha.


Geography

Rupsha Bridge at the Rupsha River in Khulna

Khulna is located in south-western Bangladesh with a total area of 59.57 km²,[2] while the district itself is about 4394.46 km². It lies south of Jessore and Narail, East of Satkhira, West of Bagerhat and North of the Bay of Bengal. It is part of the largest delta in the world. In the southern part of the delta lies the Sundarban, the world's largest mangrove forest. The city of Khulna is in the northern part of the district, and is mainly an expansion of trade centers close to the Rupsha and Bhairob rivers.

The annual average temperature for Khulna is 35.5 °C with a record low of 12.5 °C.

Civil Administration

  • The law enforcement of Khulna is under the jurisdiction of Khulna Metropoliton Police (K.M.P.).
  • Rural development is under Khulna Development Authority (K.D.A.).
  • [Khulna City Corporation (K.C.C.)].Mayor: Talukder Abdul Khaleque

Economy

Like the other big cities of Bangladesh, notably Dhaka and Chittagong, Khulna is undergoing a major transformation, due to its immensely growing population and its status as Bangladesh's third largest city. Because of its strategic location of only 45 km from the port of Mongla, Khulna is considered as being a port city like Chittagong[citation needed]. 25% of all trade handled in Bangladesh passes through Mongla[citation needed], while the rest goes through Chittagong. Khulna is also known as the city of Shrimps, because 75% of all shrimps exported from Bangladesh are cultivated in the Khulna zone. In addition to this, a major portion of the Golden Fiber (Jute) is exported through Khulna Zone[citation needed].

Khulna has the largest shipyard of Bangladesh[citation needed]. Khulna Shipyard is operated by Bangladesh Navy. Khulna has some heavy and medium type industries like Khulna Hardboard Mills, Bangladesh Oxygen Company, Khulna Oxygen Company, Platinum Jubilee Jute Mills, Star Jute Mills, Dada Match Factory & many Fish Processing and Fish Feed Factories.

Khulna is famous for its fish and seafood industries. Lobster, Prawn, Catfish, Shrimp and Crab are now being exported abroad from Khulna.

Khulna is also famous for Coconuts. Coconut oil, Green Coconuts and other products made from coconut play a positive role in the local economy.

Major markets and shopping centres in Khulna include Boro Bazar and Daak Bangla, Daulatpur Bazar, Khulna New Market, Safe 'N' Save a unique super store.

Education

The education system of Khulna is under the jurisdiction of the Jessore Board.

Schools

*St. Joseph's High School

  • Lion's School & College, Khulna
  • Agha Khan School
  • Adventist Mission School, Rupsha, Khulna.
  • Ashirbad AG Mission School, Rupsha, Khulna.
  • Aliyah Madrasa, Khulna
  • B.K.Roy Institution
  • Khulna Newsprint Mills School, Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • Elizabeth Marble School, Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • Victoria Infants' School
  • Fatema High School (Catholic), Gagan Babu Road, Khulna.
  • Government Laboratory High School,Khulna.
  • Government Coronation Girls' High School
  • Helal Memmorial School
  • Hermann Gmeiner School & SOS Children's & Youth Village
  • Home of Joy School (CSS), Tilok, Rupsha, Khulna.
  • Crescent Secondary School (Boys & Girls)
  • Cantonment Public School, Jahanabad,Khulna.
  • Daulatpur Mahshin High School
  • Khulna Government Girls' High School (Monnujan School)
  • Khulna Model High School, Khulna.
  • Khulna Public College (boys' school and college), Boyra, Khulna.
  • Khulna Model School & College, Boyra, Khulna.
  • Khulna Zila School (boys')
  • Khalishpur High School
  • Morning Bell English Medium School
  • Maulana Vashani Biddyapith (Girls' School & College)
  • Metropole English School, Metropolitan Police Lines, Boyra, Khulna.
  • Nesariyah Madrasa, Mujgunni, Khulna.
  • Orothirthho Biddyaniketon
  • Platinum Secondary School (Boys and Girls)
  • Police Lines School
  • Ramkrishna Mission School
  • Reverend Paul's High School(CSS)& the Home of Blessings
  • Rosemarie Pilot (Catholic) School, Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • Rosedale International
  • Rifles School
  • Rotary School (Boys and Girls),Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • Rupsha School
  • Soshi Bhusan Sishu Niketan
  • South Herald School
  • Saint Javier's High School
  • Saint Paul's School, Mongla.
  • Saint Patrick's School, Khalispur, Khulna.
  • South Herald School (English Medium), Sonadanga, Khulna.
  • Tulip English Medium School, Sonadanga, Khulna.
  • Power Development Board High School
  • Pallimangal High School
  • Iqbalnagar Girls' School
  • Moheswarpasa Girls' High school
  • Khulna Collegiate School
  • Udayan High School, Khulna.
  • Word of Life Bible School, Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • YWCA School
  • Khulna Collegiate School, Sonadanga R/A, Khulna

Colleges

  • Brajalal University College(Under National University), Daulatpur, Khulna.
  • Government Azam Khan Commerce(University)College
  • Government Sundarban College
  • Government Pioneer Girls' College
  • Khulna Government Majid Memorial City College
  • Khulna Government Girls' College, Boyra, Khulna.
  • Haji Mohammad Muhasin University College, Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • Haji Mohammad Muhasin Girls' College, Daulatpur, Khulna.
  • Daulatpur (Day-Night) College, Daulatpur, Khulna.
  • Maulana Vashani Biddyapith (Girls' School & College), Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • Khulna Public College (school and college), Boyra,Khulna.
  • Khulna Model School & College, Boyra, Khulna.
  • Khulna Islamia College, Boyra, Khulna.
  • Navy School & College, Goalkhali, Khulna.
  • Cantonment School & College, Jahanabad Cantonment, Khulna.
  • Khulna College
  • Ahsanulla College
  • Shahid Sarwardi College
  • Khan-A-Sabur College
  • Saburunnessa Girls' College
  • Sarwar Khan College, Senhati, Khulna.
  • Institute of Library And Computer Science(ILACS)
  • Institute of Library And Management(ILAM)
  • Khulna (Gov.) Polytechnic Institute, Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • Mangrove Institute of Science & Technology, Khalishpur, Khulna
  • Khulna (Gov.) Girls' Polytechnic Institute, Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • City Polytechnic Institute, Khalishpur, Khulna.
  • S G C Technical & B M College

Universities

Medical colleges



Metro Thanas

Transportation

Khulna has a very good transport system with links to all the districts of Bangladesh. The city possesses roads broad enough for motor vehicles to pass. However like the rest of Bangladesh, the people of Khulna like to travel using rickshaws which provide cheap, public and environmentally friendly transport. Though it is a busy city, Khulna doesn't have any traffic jams. Khulna has only one bus terminal named Sonadanga Bus Stand. "Baby Taxi" (Auto rikshaw) is very popular & common vehicle in Khulna city.

The airport of Jessore.

There is a rail junction situated at the hard point of Khulna which is linked to Northern Bangladesh & Capital city Dhaka. Though there are also road links with that region, the rail system remains a popular mode of transportation. The Sundarban Express is a luxury express train which has two trains daily to Dhaka.

Besides other forms of transport, there is a water transport terminal (B.I.W.T.C.). Barisal division is mainly connected to Khulna by water vehicles.

There is no airport in Khulna. Instead, the city is connected to Jessore Airport, which is about 70 km from Khulna. The airport has domestic flights to the rest of Bangladesh, with Biman Bangladesh Airlines,GMG Airlines,United Airways and Royal Bengal Airlines. Also, Khan Jahan Ali Airport is currently under construction in Bagerhat, which is set to serve the city of Khulna and its surrounding areas.

Telecommunications

Khulna has connections with the land-line telephone system by BTCL and the cellular phone network service, PSTNs as well as some internet services Grameen Phone, Teletalk, Banglalink, Warid, Aktel, Citycell etc. Below are some important telephone and post codes:

Postal code: 9000(GPO),9100(HO),9202,9203,9204,9204,9205,9206,9207,9208,9240,9241
Telephone code: 041

Places of interest

  • Khan Jahan Ali Bridge(Rupsha Bridge)
  • Mongla Port, Second Largest Port in the Bangladesh
  • Rabidranath Tagore's Father-in-Law's House at Fultala
  • Jahanabad Cantonment Zoo
  • Khalispur Wonderland Shishu Park
  • Mujgunni Park
  • Dosh Gate(Ten Gate)
  • The Great and the biggest Mangrove Forest Sundarban is Located Khulna Division. Please vote for Sundarban at this site: www.new7wonders.com/nature

RAJSHAHI:

Formerly RAMPUR BOALIA, Rajshahi is a divisional city in west-central Bangladesh. It lies just north of the Padma River. It was constituted a municipality in 1876. Now it is an industrial and educational center. It has a Medical College Hospital, the Varendra Research Museum, a Sericulture Institute, the University of Rajshahi (1953) and a good number of renowned colleges.

Rajshahi is famous for silk, mango and lichi. The chief crops in the area are rice, jute, pulses, and sugarcane. The region's sericulture accounts for almost the entire silk output of Bangladesh. Other cottage industries include weaving, metalworking and woodworking, and pottery. The region is believed to have formed part of the old Pundra or Paundravardhana kingdom whose capital was at Mahastangarg.

Rajshahi division consists of the districts of Rajshahi, Naogaon, Natore, Chapai Nawabganj, Dinajpur, Panchagarh, Thakurgaon, Rangpur, Gaibandha, Nilphamari, Lalmonirhat, Kurigram, Pabna, Sirajganj, Bogra, and Jaipurhat. The district of Rajshahi has 13 upazilas. Its land area is 2407.01 sq. km. and population 18,87,015.


This article is about the city. For the district, see Rajshahi District. For the division, see Rajshahi Division.
Rajshahi
Nickname(s): Education City, Silk City
Rajshahi is located in Bangladesh
Rajshahi
Rajshahi
Location of Rajshahi in Bangladesh
Coordinates: 24°22′0″N 88°36′0″E / 24.36667°N 88.6°E / 24.36667; 88.6
Country Bangladesh
Administrative District Rajshahi District
Government
- Mayor A H M Khairuzzaman Liton
Area
- City 377.09 km2 (145.6 sq mi)
- Urban 280.41 km2 (108.3 sq mi)
- Metro 96.68 km2 (37.3 sq mi)
Elevation 18 m (62 ft)
Population (2007 est.)
- City 727,083
- Density 1,928/km2 (4,993.5/sq mi)
- Metro 727,083
Time zone BST (UTC+6)
This article contains Indic text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks or boxes, misplaced vowels or missing conjuncts instead of Indic text.

Rajshahi (Bangla: রাজশাহী) is the divisional headquarter of Rajshahi division and one of the six metropolitan cities of Bangladesh. Often nicknamed The Silk City and The Education City, Rajshahi is located at the North-Western zone of the country, has an estimated population of 3.88 million and spans over 96.69 km2 (37.3 sq mi) on the northern banks of the river Padma (or Ganges which is one of the major rivers of the Indian subcontinent). Rajshahi consists of 4 Thanas, 35 Wards and 175 Mahallahs[3].

Rajshahi was formerly known as Rampur Boalia. Though an epigraphic record engraved on the Dargah (mausoleum) of famous Hazrat Shah Makdhum (Rh.) indicates that the antiquity of Rajshahi goes back to at least 1634 A.D., The town was given importance in 1825, when the East India Company shifted their administrative center from Natore to then Rampur Boalia, mainly for the ease of communication from Calcutta through the Hooghly river, Bhairab River and Padma river.. Rajshahi Municipality, which was one of the first municipalities in Bangladesh, was established in 1876.. Rajshahi Municipality was renamed as Rajshahi Pourashabha, and finally, Rajshahi Pourshava was declared Rajshahi City Corporation in 1991. Besides the City Corporation, a governing body named Rajshahi Unnayan Kortripokhkho (Rajshahi Development Authority-RDA) is there to plan the development of the city and to coordinate all the development related work.

Rajshahi is famous for its silk industries. Fine and cheap silk products of Rajshahi have earned it the nickname The Silk City. Rajshahi is also well known for its fruits, especially for Mango and Lychee. Besides the beautiful Mango Orchards and River Beaches, it is home to renowned educational institutions covering almost all of professional and cultural fields available within the country. This is why Rajshahi is often referred to The Education City in Bangladesh. Rajshahi is an important tourist destination because of a number of ancient mosques, shrines and temples in and around the city.


History

Ruins at Puthia, Rajshahi

Rajshahi district was a part of the Pundra region of ancient Bengal. The capital of Vijay Sen, the king who led military operations in Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia was located 9 miles (14 km) to the west of Rajshahi town. In medieval times, the region came to be known as "Rampur Boalia". The administrative district was established in 1772 and the municipal corporation in 1876. It was made a city corporation in 1991. During the British Raj, it was also known as "Beuleah" and was the administrative headquarters of Rajshahi district in Eastern Bengal and Assam. It was originally chosen as a commercial factory for the silk trade, which was being officially encouraged by the agricultural department of that time. The town contained a government college, and an industrial school for sericulture. Most of the public buildings were severely damaged by the earthquake of the 12th of June 1897. Throughout much of the early part of the twentieth century there was a daily steamer service on the Ganges which connected it to railheads that led to the then provincial capital of Calcutta as well as other cities in the province of Bengal. Along with all of Bangladesh, Rajshahi witnessed both great atrocities by the Pakistan army and heroic struggles by the freedom fighters during the liberation war in 1971. The largest mass grave in Bangladesh is located in Rajshahi University, which was used as an army camp during the war. On the other hand, one of the great battles of the war took place near Rajshahi. Captain Mohiuddin Jahangir, who died in battle, was awarded the highest honor (Bir Shrestho) by the Bangladesh government after the war.

Climate

Parjatan Motel, Rajshahi

The climate of Rajshahi is generally marked with a typically tropical monsoon climate with high temperature, considerable humidity and moderate rainfall. The hot season commences early in March and continues till the middle of July. The maximum mean temperature observed is about 32 °C to 36 °C (90–98°F) during the months of April, May, June and July and the minimum temperature recorded in January is about 7 °C to 16 °C (45–61°F). The highest rainfall is observed during the months of monsoon. The annual rainfall in the district is about 1,448 millimetres (57.0 in).

[hide]Climate in Rajshahi
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Average Temperature (°C) 18° 20° 25° 28° 28° 29° 29° 29° 29° 27° 24° 19°
Average Precipitation (cm) 1.6 1.0 2.9 2.9 11.1 24.4 36.1 25.4 21.2 11.4 1.4 0.1

Civil Administration

Rajshahi City Centre (Nogor Bhobon)

Rajshahi is one of six metropolitan cities in Bangladesh. A mayor and 30 ward commissioners are elected for a five year period by direct votes. Mr. Md. Mizanur Rahman Minu, was the first elected mayor of Rajshahi City Corporation. The present mayor (2009) is Mr Khairuzzaman Liton.

A new city hall, or City Corporation Building, has been built beside the Greater Road to provide all municipal services under one roof. The building, commonly known as Nogor Bhobon is a good and one of the few examples of modern architecture in Rajshahi.

The city corporation is responsible for all the administrative work related to Rajshahi city corporation under its jurisdiction. Deputy Commissioner (DC), administrative chief of Rajshahi District, and a Divisional Commissioner, administrative chief of Rajshahi Division, have their own offices here, which functions as part of the government administrative set up.

In addition, a governing body called Rajshahi Unnayan Kortripokhkho (Rajshahi Development Authority) plans the development of the city and coordinates the development related works. RDA owns one of the major markets of Rajshahi which is known as RDA market.


Economy

Padma River flows beside Rajshahi City

Rajshahi itself is an important tourist destination with the beautiful river beaches of Padma and its vast mango orchards. Other attractions in and near Rajshahi include:

  • Varendra Research Museum
  • Shrine of Hazrat Shah Makhdum Ruposh (R). It is located besides the river Padma, in the Dargah Para of the city. The name Dargah Para is derived from the word Dargah which means shrine and refers to the shrine of Hazrat Shah Makhdum Ruposh (R).
  • Bara Kuthi (16th century Dutch establishment)
  • Temple of King Kangsa Narayan
  • Shona Dighi (Golden Pond)

Apart the usual agricultural products of Bangladesh, such as rice, wheat, potatoes and lentils, Rajshahi and its neighboring regions are specially suited from various crops such as Watermelons, Sugarcanes, Mangoes and Lichies.

In spite of being an important city and located on a riverbank, industrial development in Rajshahi hasn't been fast. Locals have claimed this is due to lack of attention from the central government in Dhaka. In 90's an Industry Park has been established in Rajshahi, now mainly home to industries producing products of the famous Rajshahi silk. Rajshahi is also home to a jute mill, a sugar mill and mango based industries.There will be rapid industrial development in Rajshahi if gas is supplied through pipeline and the people of Rajshahi are demanding supply of gas as soon as possible.The government has taken steps to supply gas in Rajshahi quickly and a project has started to supply gas.

It was recently decided that Rajshahi will be the first "Digital City" in the country.

Transport

Transportation in Rajshahi is very good. Rajshahi is connected to the rest of country through roads, rail and water. Unfortunately no air transportation is presently in operation in Rajshahi.

Road Transport

It takes about 4 to 5 hours by road to reach the capital, Dhaka from Rajshahi. A number of bus services including AC and non-AC buses are available from and to Dhaka. Bus services to other major districts are also available from the Bus Terminal of Rajshahi.

Railway

The New Rajshahi Railway Station

Recently, two new Inter-City train services has been inaugurated by Bangladesh Railway, named "Padma Express" and "Silk City Express". These trains (broad gauge) run between Dhaka and Rajshahi regularly. The coaches of trains are brand new luxury ones imported from Indonesia. The time schedules of these two trains are:

From Rajshahi:

At 7:15 am Silk City and at 4:00 pm Padma Express

From Dhaka:

At 3:12 pm(Airport)Silk City and at 11:45 pm (Dhaka Cantonment)Padma Express.

There are also a number of intercity express trains which runs between Rajshahi and other major cities of Bangladesh.


Shah Makhdum Airport

An airport named after the famous Islamic preacher Hazrat Shah Makhdum (Rh.) is situated a short distance away from Rajshahi city, but unfortunately it is not in service at present. No domestic or International flights from this airport are available.

Some important information on Shah Makhdum Airport, Rajshahi:

  • Airport Code : VGRJ IATA: RJH
  • Runway Length : 6000/100 ft.
  • Runway Elevation : 55 ft (17 m).
  • Longitude : 88° 36' 59E
  • Latitude : 24° 26' 14N
  • World Area Code : 703

Heritage

Rajshahi is famous for its characteristic sweetmeats, not to be found anywhere else in the country. These special preparations include Roshkodom, Khaja, Raghobshahi and Kachagolla (Natore is specially famous for this particular sweetmeat). Along with neighboring Chapai Nababganj, Rajshahi is the home of the regions best mangoes and lichis. Rajshahi is also the home of Barendra Museum, one of the foremost museums in South Asia, and of Rajshahi silk, the finest silk produced in Bangladesh.

Major Places

Shrine of Hazrat Shah Mokhdum (Rh.)

A Majar or Dorga (Shrine) is established around the grave of Hazrat Shah Mokhdum Ruposh (Rh.) in Rajshahi city. It is said that Hazrat Shah Mokhdum Ruposh (Rh.) was the first Islam preacher in the Rajshahi region. It is also said that he came to Rajshahi through the river Padma riding on a crocodile. Even now, some crocodiles are reserved in the Dighi (Large Pond) next to the shrine of Hazrat Shah Mokhdum (Rh.).

Varendra Research Museum

Varendra Research Museum

The Varendra Research Museum, one of the oldest museums in this subcontinent, is situated in the heart of Rajshahi city. Its library contains 22,000 printed books and journals and 6000 manuscripts in Bengali, Sanskrit, Arabic and Persian languages. The library has been moved from the Museum building to a new, modern structure. Md Abdul Matin khan

It was one of the first non government initiatives for building a museum by some enlightened people with Kumar Sarat Kumar Roy during the British era. This museum has a large collection of statues of Lord Surya and some unique masterpieces illustrating the history of the locality and its civilization.

Bangladesh Railway

The headquarter of Bangladesh Railway (Western Zone) is in Rajshahi. Rajshahi Railway Station is being modified and developed to house more passengers and to offer more services to the city dwellers.

Bangladesh Betar

Bangladesh Betar (Radio Bangladesh) has a regional station in Rajshahi which transmits various programs of mass interest. Rajshahi station has a broadcasting house and transmitters in different locations. Two transmitters of 100 kW and 10 kW transmitting capacity transmit the programs developed at the broadcasting house. The Rajshahi station transmits its programs in Medium Wavelength. The popularity of the radio is low in Rajshahi like other places of Bangladesh because of the low quality programmes of Bangladesh Betar.

Bangladesh Television

Bangladesh Television, commonly known as BTV, is the national television channel of Bangladesh. It has a relay center in Rajshahi city.

Central Park and Zoo

Rajshahi Central Park
Rajshahi Zoo

A central park and zoo is one of the main attractions of Rajshahi city. A wide area with lush green trees and grasses also houses different animal species. It is located by the bank of river Padma.

Baliapukur

Its situated between the Rajshahi University of Engineering and Technology (RUET) and The Bus Terminal. A residential area, Padma Housing State has also been established beside this area. It is one of the largest but less well planned residential areas in Rajshahi.

Borokuthi

In the compound of the Barakuthi there is a small cemetery with groves dating back to the years of the nineteenth century. There are 14 tombs with thirteen epitaphs within the cemetery. Here also some natureral calimetari which make people enjoy for time being.

Bulonpur

The district and divisional offices, the civil and criminal courts are situated in this particular area.

ChotoBongram

Chotobongram is the largest area in the Rajahahi. There are two Children park, Bonghobondhu Collage, Highway Road & 7 great mosque etc.

BoroBongram

This is a large are on the northern region of Rajshahi city just north of Chhoto Bonogram. Rajshahi city is developing along its northern side and BoroBonogram is going to be the heart of New Rajshahi city in near future. Noudapara is the main market place of BoroBonogram and is situated beside the crossing of Rajshahi bypass road and Airport road. The crossing is well known by the name 'Aam Chottor' as large concrete mango remics (like silk, mango is also the symbol of Rajshahi) have been built and placed at the center of the crossing.

Laxmipur

The Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education, the Laboratory High School, the New Government Degree College, Teachers' Training College, Rajshahi Government Medical College and Hospital and the Varendra Research Museum are located in this area. Another institute called Institute of Health Technology (IHT) situated here. It is one of the three government institute of health technology.this part are arbaniged by mohajer from india during the rule of Murshid kuli Khan that its name was Mahadi pur.

Kazihata

Kazihata is a small part of the town but quite known for the presence of quite a lot of government & private institutions like Bangladesh Bank,Radio Bangladesh,TV studio ( non functional),Christian mission hospital,House building finance corporation,Soil Research Institute and others.

The people Kazihata is proud of are famous singer Andrew Kishor many eminent teachers(Professor Dr. Golam Shabbir Sattar (Tapu). Professor Nurullah ,cricketers ,hockey players & professionals like doctor,engineer & lawyers .

Shaheb Bazar

The municipal office, Rajshahi Collegiate School, Rajshahi College, Masjid Mission Academy, Loknath school, Deaf and Mental schools are located here. The Shaheb Bazar mosque is situated just on the junction of the Natore road with Shaheb Bazar Road. Here also an ancient Establishment called Amir Ali Avenue which is under a waquf state called Salamot miya waquf state. which is engaged in various social work before 50 year. Late Amir Ali, MLA is first motuwalli of waquf state. His elder son Md. Khorshed Alam is now continue the position. Md. Khorshed Alam 3 sons. Advocate Khirul Bashar, Sharier Naseer Alam & Amir Sadat Prince.

Uposhahar

An outstanding residential area. First built for the Bihari Refugees, but later it turns into one of the posh area among the city. Divisional headquarters of some notable company including Grameenphone, Aktel, Citycell, Social Marketing Company (SMC) and Indian assistant high commission office is located here. Rajshahi Cantonment is located beside this area. Here is located a Govt. primary school (Upashahor Govt. Model Primary School) & a High school (Govt. Satelite High School).There is a graveyard & 3 mosques. The main one is named Upashohor Koroitola Boro Moszid(mosque). 6 playgrounds & a Eid gah are situated there.

Motihar

Motihar is nearly declared thana under Rajshahi city corporation. Some parts of Charghat Thana is also included in its area. The Rajshahi University is situated here on large campus surrounded by mango groves that presents a panoramic view.

Kazla, Talaimari

Two prestigious and renowned public universities, the University of Rajshahi (established in 1953) and the Rajshahi University of Engineering and Technology (RUET - established in 1964 as BIT, Bangladesh Institute of Technology and in 2002 it became the University) are located in Kazla-Talaimari area. Rajshahi is called the Educational Capital of Bangladesh and these two are the major educational institutions here in Rajshahi. Keeping pace with, peripheral campuses of several private universities have also been established in this area of Rajshahi city.

Sopura

Recently a new township has grown up here on the northern side of the railway station. Here lie the district stadium and the Polytechnic institute.Now it is also a popular living area for the city dwelers.

Shiroil

is the famous place in Rajshahi for NIIT Rajshahi Center, the Railway Station and the old Bus Terminal. The "Shiroil Govt. High School, Rajshahi" (one of the three govt. high schools for the boys in Rajshahi city) is located here.

Harian

Harian, a place few Kilometers away from the city, is famous for a sugar mill which was established by B.I.D.C. It has been founded by the great initiative of the Mridha Family, a renowned family of the locality. Late Mamtaz Uddin Mridha, the then Chairman of the Harian Union Parishad, was one of the leading persons to make this history happened.

horagram bajar

horagram, aplace few km to the west side, is famous for mango archerd. rajshahi court is in here. a rail station is also here.

Educational institutions

Administrative building of Rajshahi University
Shabash Bangladesh, a sculpture commemorating the liberation war.
Rajshahi College, One of the famous educational Institutes of Rajshahi

Rajshahi is also an important educational center in Bangladesh. Major educational institutes include:

Notable People

Famous people associated with Rajshahi include:

  • Professor Shamsuzzoha
  • Ila Mitra
  • Hasan Azizul Huq
  • Ramaprasad Chanda
  • Dr.Enamul Hoque
  • Dr. Asaduz Zaman
  • Sir Jadunath Sarkar
  • Akshay Kumar Maitreya
  • Abul Hasnat Mohammad Kamruzzaman (1926-1975), Politician
  • Khaled Mashud, Cricketer
  • A. H. M. Kamaruzzaman Hena
  • Amir Ali Miah, M.L.A
  • Kamalesh Kumar Das
  • Sree Ragunath Das
  • Sharmili Ahmed
  • Juned Siddique, Cricketer
  • AKM Rezaul Haq Khan, Islamic Thinker.
  • James, Musician
  • Ferdousdoula Babul(Freedom fighter, killed by Pakistan Fores on 26 November 1971)
  • Sir Jadunath Sarkar(1870-1958) Historian
  • Akram Khan engineer of siriusbroadband(BD)Ltd.
  • Abdul Waheed Mohammad Kabel, Principal of Teacher's Training College, Rajshahi 1966 - 1974
  • Mohammad Gholam Kibriya, Inter-University tennis Champion 1964, 3rd son of Abdul Waheed Mohammad Kabel
SYLHET:

Situated in the north-eastern region of Bangladesh, Sylhet is a prime attraction for all tourists. Laying between the Khasia and the Jaintia hills on the north, and the Tripura hills on the south, Sylhet breaks the monotony of the flatness of this land by a multitude of terraced tea gardens, rolling countryside and the exotic flora and fauna. The Sylhet valley is formed by a beautiful, winding pair of rivers named the Surma and the Kushiara both of which are fed by innumerable hill streams from the north and the south.The valley has good number of haors which are big natural depressions. During winter these haors are vast stretches of green land, but in the rainy season they turn into turbulent seas. These haors provide a sanctuary to the millions of migratory birds who fly from Siberia across the Himalayas to avoid the severe cold there.

Sylhet has also a very interesting and rich history, Before the conquest by the Muslims, it was ruled by local chieftains. In 1303, the great Saint Hazrat Shah Jalal came to Sylhet from Delhi with a band of 360 disciples to preach Islam and defeated the then Raja Gour Gobinda. Sylhet thus became a district of saints, shrines. Sylhet, the tea granary of Bangladesh, not only has over 150 tea gardens but also proudly possesses three largest tea gardens in the world in respect of dimension and production.


This article is about the city of Sylhet. For other meanings see Sylhet (disambiguation).
Sylhet
সিলেট
Metropolitan City
Sylhet City Corporation
The Kean Bridge and Ali Amjad's Clock Tower, Sylhet
The Kean Bridge and Ali Amjad's Clock Tower, Sylhet
Official logo of Sylhet
Seal of the Sylhet City Corporation
Location of Sylhet from the capital within Bangladesh
Location of Sylhet from the capital within Bangladesh
Division Sylhet Division
District Sylhet District
Metropolitan city status 31 March 2009[1]
Sylhet City Corporation 9 April 2001
Municipal Board 1867
Government
- Mayor Badar Uddin Ahmed Kamran (Awami League)
Area
- Total 26.50 km2 (10.2 sq mi)
Population (2008)[2]
- Total 463,198
- Density 17,479/km2 (45,270.4/sq mi)
- Demonym Sylheti
- Ethnicity [3] 99% Bengali
1% Manipuri, Khasi and others
Demographics
- Languages Sylheti, Bengali, English
- Literacy rate 70%
Time zone BST (UTC+6)
Post code 3100
Website Official website

Sylhet (Sylheti: সিলট Silôţ, Bengali: সিলেট Sileţ), is a major city in north-eastern Bangladesh. It is the capital of Sylhet Division and Sylhet District, and was granted metropolitan city status in March 2009.Sylhet is located on the banks of the Surma River and is surrounded by the Jaintia, Khasi and Tripura hills. The city has a high population density, with nearly 500,000 people. It is one of the largest cities in Bangladesh. The Sylhet region is well known for its tea gardens and tropical forests, the city however is currently known for its business boom — being one of the richest cities in Bangladesh, with new investments of hotels, shopping malls and luxury housing estates, brought mainly by expatriates living in the United Kingdom.

Sylhet has a history of conquests and heritage from different types of cultures. The city is described as a City of Saints, with the mausoleum of the great saint Hazrat Shah Jalal, who brought Islam to Bengal during the 14th century, being located here. During the next few centuries it was part of the state of Assam during the rule of British India, after independence between India and Pakistan, Sylhet was then part of East Pakistan based on a referendum, and is part of Bangladesh as of today, which also played a major role in the Bangladesh Liberation War during the 1970s. The 1980-90s was the period where mass migration started from Sylhet mainly to the United Kingdom and the United States. The 21st century sees the economic growth of the city.


History

Historians believe that Sylhet was an expanded commercial center from the ancient period, which explains its original namesake. During this time, Sylhet was probably inhabited by Indo-Aryan Brahmins, though ethnically the population would also have traces of Assamese. It has also been suggested that the Ancient Kingdom of Harikela was situated in modern Sylhet.

In the ancient and early medieval period, Sylhet was ruled primarily by local chieftains as viceroy of the kings of Pragjyotishpur. There is evidence to suggest that the Maharaja Sri Chandra, of northern Bengal, conquered Bengal in the 10th century, although this is a much disputed topic amongst Bangladeshi historians and archaeologists. This was a period of relative prosperity and there is little evidence to suggest this was marred by wars or feuds. Sylhet was certainly known by the rest of India, and is even referred to in the ancient Hindu sacred Tantric text, the Shakti Sangama Tantra, as 'Silhatta'. The last chieftain to reign in Sylhet was Govinda of Gaur. Sylhet was previously a Hindu kingdom, controlled by the Rajas. One of the most renowned Bengali warriors was Shaikh Jalal of Sylhet, who entered Sylhet to battle against Raja Gaur Govind, with 313 followers, but the Raja had 100,00 men, which led to a hostile battle leading the Raja to be defeated, and the entire region falling to Shaikh Jalal (d. 1357).[11]

Shrine of Hazrat Shah Jalal

The 14th century marked the beginning of Islamic influence in Sylhet, with the arrivals of Sufi disciples to the region. In 1301, Sylhet was conquered by Shamsu'd-Din Firuz, a Bengali enterprising governer. Shaikh Jalal was driven out by Mongol invasions. Sikander Shah rallied his army against Raja Gaur Gobind, due the fact that the Raja ordered a man to be killed for sacrificing a cow for his son. But Sikander Shah was defeated by the Raja.[11] A messianic Muslim saint, Shah Jalal, arrived in Sylhet in 1303 from Mecca via Delhi and Dhaka with the instructions for aiding Sikhander Khan Ghazi in defeating Govinda of Gaur.[13][14] Shah Jalal was also joined by Shah Paran (nephew) who was also a renowned Sufi saint, in their expedition. After the conquest of Sylhet, Shah Paran established a khanqah at Khadim Nagar in Dakshingarh Pargana, a few kilometers away from Sylhet town, where he started Sufi spiritual practices and activities. He played a significant role in propagating Islam and establishing Muslim rule in the Sylhet region.[15] Ghazi was the direct nephew of Sultan Firoz Shah of Delhi. Under the spiritual leadership of Shah Jalal and his 360 companions many of the populous converted to Islam and began spreading the religion to other parts of the country. Shah Jalal died in Sylhet in or around the year 1350. His shrine is located in the north of the city, inside the perimeter of the mosque complex known as Dargah-e-Shah Jalal. Even today Shah Jalal remains revered; visitors arrive from all over Bangladesh and beyond to pay homage. Saints such as Shah Jalal and Shah Paran were responsible for the conversion of most of the populace from the native religion of Hinduism or Buddhism to Islam. Shortly thereafter, Sylhet became a center of Islam in Bengal. In the official documents and historical papers, Sylhet was often referred to as Jalalabad during the era of the Muslim rule.

The 17th century started the British rule in the Indian subcontinent. During the period the British East India Company employed Indian lascars which included Sylhetis. In the late 18th century, the British East India Company became interested in Sylhet and saw it as an area of strategic importance in the war against Burma. Sylhet was gradually absorbed into British control and administration and was governed as a part of Bengal. In 1778, the East India Company appointed Robert Lindsay of Sylhet, who started trading and governing the region, making fortune. He was over disregarded by the local Sylhetis and other Muslims. In 1781, a devastating flood struck the region which wiped out crops and killing a third of the population. The locals blamed the British for not preventing the greatness of the event, which led to an uprising, led by Syed Hadi and Syed Mahdi (known as the Pirzada). Lindsay's army was defiant and defeated the Piraza in battle in Sylhet. For the next centuries thousands of young Sylhetis started to serve on British merchant ships, cooking curry for their sailors. The numbers of lascars grew during the wars, some ending up on the docks of London and Liverpool temporary, other however established themselves in the communities and married English women. In the next few years during the World War 2, many fought in the war and some were serving in ships in poor conditions, which led to many escaping and settling in London, opening Indian curry cafes and restaurants.

After the British administrative reorganization of India, Sylhet was eventually incorporated into Assam. It remained a part of Assam for the rest of the era of British rule. In 1947, following a referendum, almost all of erstwhile Sylhet became a part of East Pakistan, barring the Karimganj subdivision which was incorporated into the new Indian state of Assam.The referundum was held on 3 July 1947, there were a total of 546,815 votes cast on 239 polling stations, a majority of 43.8 per cent voted in favour of being part of East Bengal. The referendum was acknowledged by Article 3 of the India Independence Act of 18 July 1947. In 1971, Sylhet became part of the newly formed independent country of Bangladesh.

Sylhet has a "friendship link" with the city of St Albans, in the United Kingdom. The link was established in 1988 when the District council supported a housing project in Sylhet as part of the International Year of Shelter for the Homeless. Sylhet was chosen because it is the area of origin for the largest ethnic minority group in St Albans. In July 1996, the mayor of Sylhet, Badar Uddin Ahmed Kamran, signed the Twinning accord between Sylhet and the London Borough of Tower Hamlets (home to around 40,000 Sylhetis at the time), with the mayor of Tower Hamlets late Albert Jacobs in London.

Geography and climate

Sylhet city is located at 24°53′30″N 91°53′00″E / 24.8917°N 91.8833°E / 24.8917; 91.8833, in the north eastern region of Bangladesh within the Sylhet Division, within the Sylhet District and Sylhet Sadar Upazila. The climate of Sylhet is tropical monsoon with a predominantly hot and humid summer and a relatively cool winter. The city is within the monsoon climatic zone, with annual average highest temperatures of 23°C (Aug-Oct) and average lowest temperature of 7°C (Jan). Nearly 80% of the annual average rainfall of 3,334 mm occurs between May and September.

The city is located within the region where there are hills and basins which constitute one of the most distinctive regions in Bangladesh. The physiography of Sylhet comprises mainly of hill soils, encompassing a few large depressions known locally as "beels" which can be mainly classified as oxbow lakes, caused by tectonic subsidence primarily during the earthquake of 1762. It is flanked by the Indian states of the Meghalaya in the north, Assam in the east, Tripura in the south and the Bangladesh districts of Netrokona, Kishoregonj and Brahmanbaria in the west. The area covered by Sylhet Division is 12,569 km², which is about 8% of the total land area of Bangladesh.

Geologically, the region is complex having diverse sacrificial geomorphology; high topography of Plio-Miocene age such as Khasi and Jaintia hills and small hillocks along the border. At the centre there is a vast low laying flood plain of recent origin with saucer shaped depressions, locally called Haors. Haors, also known as the Sylhet basin, are a wetland ecosystem, which is a natural bowl-shaped depression and mainly can be found in the Sylhet region, in particular also in Sylhet Sadar.Available limestone deposits in different parts of the region suggest that the whole area was under the ocean in the Oligo-Miocene. In the last 150 years three major earthquakes hit the city, at a magnitude of at least 7.5 on the Richter Scale, the last one took place in 1918, although many people are unaware that Sylhet lies on the earthquake prone zone of Bangladesh.

Weather averages for Sylhet, Bangladesh
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 73
(23)
80
(27)
86
(30)
88
(31)
85
(29)
86
(30)
88
(31)
87
(31)
86
(30)
83
(28)
81
(27)
75
(24)
84
(29)
Average low °F (°C) 50
(10)
55
(13)
64
(18)
69
(21)
71
(22)
75
(24)
77
(25)
76
(24)
75
(24)
70
(21)
62
(17)
55
(13)
66
(19)
Precipitation inches (mm) 0.4
(10.2)
1
(25.4)
4.1
(104.1)
13.7
(348)
21.9
(556.3)
32
(812.8)
31.5
(800.1)
24.5
(622.3)
20.2
(513.1)
9.5
(241.3)
1
(25.4)
0.3
(7.6)
160.1
(4,066.5)

Civic administration

Sylhet consists of 27 wards and 210 mahallas, it is a small city with an area of 26.50 km². The rapid growth and expansion of Sylhet occurred during the colonial period. Sylhet Municipality was established in 1878. A devastating earthquake demolished almost the entire town on 12 June 1897 following which a modern and European model new town was built on the wreckage. Many new roads were constructed in the late 1890s and Sylhet became really connected to the other parts of the country with the establishment of an extension line of Assam-Bengal Railway in 1912-15. From the very beginning of the 20th century, the importance of Sylhet increased with the establishment of the tea industry. In the 1950s and 1960s, rapid urbanisation took place in the town, fostered by the expatriate Sylhetis and the process is still ongoing.

On 9 April 2001, Sylhet was changed to a city corporation from a municipal board, and currently the city is administrated by the Sylhet City Corporation. At present, Sylhet is the district-headquarters as well as the divisional headquarters of the districts of Sunamganj, Habibganj, Maulvi Bazar and Sylhet District. The Sylhet City Corporation is responsible for the services that are provided within the city which includes traffic, roads, garbage collection, water supply, registrations and many others. The corporation consists of the Chairman and 22 other Commissioners, and focuses on the development of the city.

Economy

The Garden City tower in Sylhet

Remittance has been the key element of the economic growth of the city and also the region. The money is mainly sent by expatriates of Sylhet living abroad, particularly the United Kingdom, majority of the community originate from Sylhet. These foreign Bangladeshis are now looking to invest in the city. During the fiscal year of 2005-06, the flow of remittances increased by 25 percent to $4.8 billion, mostly from expatriates of Sylheti origin living in the United Kingdom with significant contributions from expatriates in the United States. That amount was expected to increase to $5.5 billion in 2007, with the government's attention toward supervising and monitoring banks.The amount of idle money lying with the commercial banks in Sylhet as deposits is about 4,000 crore taka, which is not common in the rest of Bangladesh.

Rose View Hotel, Shahjalal-Uposhohor

Although Sylhet is a small city in comparison to the capital, it has been transformed drastically over the years. The construction industry in Sylhet is currently booming, with many shopping centres and apartments being built to luxurious standards. It has been described as the wealthiest city in the country after the capital Dhaka which has fuelled the increase in property prices. The skyline of the city is mainly dominated by large buildings of western-style shopping malls, which has been the largest investments made by the expatriates. There are many new restaurants and stores, often themed on those found in London, which have been established to cater to the visiting Sylheti expatriate population and the growing Sylheti middle classes.These include, the London Mansion, Sylhet Millennium, Blue Water (named after Bluewater Shopping Complex in the UK), London Fried Chicken (from Perfect Fried Chicken) and Tessco (misspelt from the original Tesco).New hotels have been established, the Rose View Hotel and the first Apartment-Hotel and resort in Bangladesh, called Grand Sylhet, are both the only five-star hotels in the city. Large multinational companies have also started to invest in Sylhet, one of these being HSBC Bank, which started its service in 2006 with 6,000 customers, and opened a Customer Service Center in 2008 in the Upashahar area. The Sylhet area contains several important natural gas fields, which make an important contribution to the energy balance of Bangladesh.

Zindabazar point in the city center

The government has taken steps to create a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Sylhet. It is the first SEZ to be created in Bangladesh, after research conducted showed that the region is the best place, which will protect the human and natural resources, including the infrastructure of foreign investment, and to create strong economic development with domestic and international markets. The new zone only allows public-private partnership, without the interference of government finance.The SEZ was created due to the demands of the British-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce, which is an economic forum of British Bangladeshis. The plan comes as an initiative toward stimulating the ongoing investment that has already taken place in Sylhet as well as providing a basis towards long-term investment to turn Sylhet into a major economic hub. Investments by British Bangladeshis led the way for two additional privately owned airlines, Royal Bengal Airlines and United Airways, to launch services in 2007. The investment is regarded to serve the Sylheti population living in the UK.

However with the growth of new businesses being based in the city, there are criticisms for the lack of sustainability of the economy of the city. There are few numbers of industries developed and is also lacking the levels of agricultural production, which is very low in comparison to other districts. Large numbers of remittance and investment is being spent in the city, but the first and second generation British Bangladeshis have not considered whether these investments will create new jobs for the people in order to create a sustainable developing economy. It has created a prosperity type of society, where school children believe that London will only provide success. Studies have shown that 70 percent of the community rely on remittance sent from relatives abroad, shopping malls are mainly created because it is recognised as being safe, and these investments may have reached to the point of saturation.

Demographics

The population of Sylhet within the city corporation, was approximately 427,265 as of 2007 and estimated 463,198 in 2008 (density population is 17,479 per km²). Together with the metropolitan area it has a population of 2,675,346 as of 2001, constituting 2.06% of the national population. The population growth rate of the city is 1.73%, which has reduced from 1.93% in 1991. As of 2001, It had average literacy rate of 69.73%. The highest literacy rate was 84.24% in Ward 22 and the lowest was 48.15% in Ward 10 (2001). The total number of households in the city was 55,514. Sylhet has high rates of power shortage, including water shortage. According to the Power Development Board, Sylhet is only receiving 50MW, which is half than the demand of 100MW. The city corporation is also supplying only 22,500 gallons of water, far less then the demand of about 65,000. The major sources of water to the city is the tube wells and the Surma River. There are also high levels of arsenic in the water in Sylhet than in most other regions, this is mainly due to the multiple depth screening in the tubewells. According to the World Health Organization in 1997, about 61% are highly contaminated by arsenic, however in 1999, the percentage of boreholes tested where arsenic levels are above 50 micrograms per litre, was under 25%.There are about 331 registered restaurants in the city, only 15% maintain sanitary facilities and 85% have unhygienic conditions that are unsafe for the public.[55]

The Sylheti language is the main language spoken in the city as well as throughout the division, and is considered as a dialect of Bengali, which does not contain a written form, where in this case Bengali is written, and sometimes spoken. It is often accepted that Sylheti is a separate language on its own right, however it has not been given an official status by the government. There is much debate to whether it should be recognized, for example there is greater differences of Sylheti to Bengali, than Assamese to Bengali, which is recognised as separate. Most Sylhetis are at least bilingual to some degree, as they are taught Bengali at all levels of education in Bangladesh. Sylheti is also the dominant dialect of Bengali in India, mainly in Assam, Silchar, and in north-eastern regions.

The majority of Sylhetis are Muslims (93%), other religious groups include Hindus (7%), and very few numbers of other religions, mainly Buddhists and Christians (less than 0.1%). The majority of the people are mainly Sunni Muslims who follow the Hanafi school;[there are also other followers of the Sunni Sufi movement of Fultoli, based on teachings of Saheb Qibla Fultali (born in the village of Fultoli in Sylhet). It is said that the leader is a descendant of Shah Kamal, one of the disciples of Shah Jalal.Research in Bangladesh found that 60% of Sylhetis pray daily as compared to 35% in the whole country. Most people are also influenced by Sufi masters or ideas.

Thousands from Sylhet have moved abroad and settled in different countries. Although there are no official statistics, it is estimated that there are over 500,000 Sylheti people living abroad. The largest numbers of people from Sylhet living abroad is in the United Kingdom, with a population of about 300,000 (95% of the Bangladeshi population). Over 150,000 people are Bangladeshi-born, who have migrated to the UK.They are highly concentrated in the East London boroughs, having established themselves within the communities, notably in Brick Lane which has been dubbed as Banglatown. Sylheti foreigners are known as "Londoni" in Sylhet. Many have also immigrated to the United States—they are mainly spread out across the country, but has a large population in New York City. Several people are also working as foreign workers in the Middle East countries.

Culture

Given its unique cultural and economic development, and linguistic differences (Greater Sylhet region was a part of Assam and Surma Valley State for much of the British Raj in comparison to the rest of Bangladesh), and given that Sylhet has, for most of its recent history, been a region of a larger entity.] As so many Sylhetis are resident abroad, Sylhet has a major flow of foreign currency from non-resident Bangladeshis. The major holidays celebrated in Sylhet include traditional and religious celebrations, Muslim festivals are the Eid-ul-Fitr after Ramadan and Eid-ul-Fitr. Colourful Hindu festivals celebrated by the Hindu community, are the Laspurnima, Jolung Jatra and Rotra Jutra. Cultural or nationalistic celebrations include the Language Movement Day, this is where wreaths are laid at the Shaheed Minar paying tribute to the martyrs, the Bangladeshi Independence Day, Victory Day celebrated with parades by school and academies, and the Pohela Baishakh—celebration of the Bengali New Year.

There are large shopping malls in the city, cosmetics and confectionary is mainly available in Bondor Bazar, handicrafts and textiles stores can be found in Zinda Bazar, these include the Al-Hamra Shopping City, Bluewater, Sylhet Millenium, Sylhet Plaza, Shukria Market and many others. These malls sell many items in particular from a wide range of sarees. Majority of these shoppers are from the middle-class and visiting expatriates. Restaurants from different types of cuisines are available, such as the Agra Restaurant, Chinese and Thai food is also sold in Hamadan Restaurant or Royal Chef. The cuisine in Sylhet is quite similar to that shared across the country which is rice with chicken or meat curry, it does however have different staples of fish such as the Pabda fish, and the citrus fruit known as hatkora is used for flavour in curries, which is grown primarily in the Sylhet region.

The gate of Shah Jalal Dargah

All Bangladeshi television channels are available as in throughout the country via cable or sattelite, such as Channel i, NTV or ATN Bangla in the Bengali language including many other Indian channels. There are no national television stations based in Sylhet or broadcasting programs in Sylheti, however the British-owned Channel S has a team, correspondents and reporters based in the city and the region mostly with Sylheti programs. The main newspapers produced in the city includes Sylheter Dak, Jalalabad, Manchitra, Yeugaveri, Daily Sylhet Sanglap, and Aajker Sylhet. The first Grameenphone Centre opened in Sylhet on May 20, 2007, which was the first telecommunication centre in the city. The most celebrated personalities in Sylhet include Shah Jalal, who was one of the greatest saints in the region, credited for the conversion of people in the Bengal region. His tomb lies in the Shah Jalal Dargah Mazar Sharif in the north, which is still as used as a place of pilgrimage, M. A. G. Osmani was the commander-in-chief of the Bangladesh Forces during the Bangladesh Liberation War, and Saifur Rahman, was the first politician from Sylhet to be a member of the cabinet in the government. Sylhet has also influenced much of the music in Bangladesh, notable legends include Hason Raja and Shah Abdul Karim who have produced Bangladeshi folk music.

Sylheti attachment to their regional identity also continues in the efforts of many Sylhetis to keep marital relationships within the same regional cultural background. Sylheti people are considered as a distinct ethnic group in Bangladesh; this is mainly because of language differences between the standard Bangla language, and the Sylheti dialect, and they are fiercely protective of their language. There are also many cultural and custom differences between Bengalis and Sylhetis.Many Sylhetis only marry within the Sylheti-speaking community, and not people from other regions of Bangladesh. They are also more domesticated, have a family-orientated community type of culture, and are more conservative Muslims. These stereotypes have led to some rivalry between non-Sylhetis and Sylhetis, du eto differences of cultural customs. Marriages are practiced in a traditional Bengali Muslim style, with the gae holud ritual, and the prayers. Most marriages however in Sylhet, are mainly of Londoni men with Sylheti women. It is believed that the brides have brought a new Sylheti type of culture, which are then passed on to British-born children. Some are held between cousins, which have then bonded extended families further on, while those un-related will increase links between relatives in London and Sylhet. Those who marry in Bangladesh, will return back to Britain with their wives (due to immigration laws), vise versa is not practiced frequently.

The most popular Sport in Sylhet is Cricket and also Football. The largest team is the Sylhet Division, which plays its matches in the Sylhet Stadium (M.A.G. Osmani Stadium), used for cricket-use (jointly with football) is the only stadium in the city, and one of the two in the division, it was created in 1965 and has a capacity of 15,000 people. In the National Cricket League it hasn't won any titles however did win in the One-Day Cricket League in 2001-02 season. Notable players from Sylhet who have played for the national team include Rajin Saleh, Enamul Haque Jr, Tapash Baisya, and Alok Kapali.

Transport

The main transport systems used in the city are Cycle rickshaws (mainly known as baby-taxis or CNGs), auto rickshaws, buses, mini-buses and cars. There are about 80,000 rickshaws running each day. Bus service prices have increased as of 2008, up to 30% higher, prices ranges from Tk4 to 15.95. Sylhet is well connected by highways and railway links to Chittagong and Dhaka, as well as other parts of Sylhet. Highway links to India have been established through the Asian highway. The Sylhet Railway Station is the main railway station providing trains on national routes operated by the state-run Bangladesh Railway.

The city of Sylhet is served by Osmani International Airport, located at the north of the city. It is Bangladesh's third busiest airport and became an international airport due to the demand of expatriate Bangladeshis and their descendants from the United Kingdom and the United States. The main frequent airlines of the airport are, Biman Bangladesh Airlines and domestic flights with GMG Airlines. The airport received its first international arrival on 3 November 2002, with Biman arriving from Kuwait via Abu Dhabi en-route to Dhaka. Work started in 2006 to upgrade the airport to international standards, including a new terminal building, a jetway, a taxiway, and expansion of the runway to accommodate wide-bodied aircraft. It was confirmed that in May 2007, Biman will be operating Hajj flights directly from the airport later in 2007. British Bangladeshi-owned airlines, Air Sylhet and Royal Bengal Airline are also seeking landing rights to the airport in order to provide a better service to the expatriate community in the UK.

Education

Sylhet city is served by Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education, Sylhet and educational institutes like Shahjalal University of Science and Technology, it is the first science and technology university established in Bangladesh and one of the popular in the country, there also other prominent schools such as Sylhet Government Pilot High School,[102] Sylhet Engineering College, Murari Chand College, and Osmani Medical College.[105] Other notable educational institutions are Jalalabad Cantonment Public School and College, Sylhet Cadet College, and Sylhet Law College. All education is provided only in the Bengali language, however there are also private English schools, among them Scholars-home is one of the English medium schools. There are also four private universities in Sylhet, namely Leading University, Sylhet international University and Metropolitan University. Many Muslim families also send their children to madrassahs to learn Arabic, such madrassahs includes the Jamia Tawakkulia Renga Madrasah, one of the oldest institutions in the city.

There are also four private medical colleges in Sylhet, namely Jalalabad Ragib-Rabeya Medical College and Hospital, North East Medical College & Hospital, Sylhet Women's Medical College and Durre Samad Red Crescent Medical College. Jalalabad Ragib-Rabeya Medical College is the largest; established in 1995, founded by philanthropist Ragib Ali and his wife Rabeya Khatun.

Sister cities

Sylhet is twinned with:

In addition there are friendship links with:

See also

Places of Interest

The Shrine of Hazrat Shah Jalal

Even today, more than six hundred years after the death of Saint Hazrat Shah Jalal, the shrine is visited by innumerable devotees of every caste and creed, who make the journey from far away places. Legend says, the great saint who came from Delhi to preach Islam, defeated the then Hindu Raja (king) Gour Gobinda. He transformed the witchcraft followers of the Raja into catfishes which are still alive in the tank adjacent to the shrine Swords. The holy Quran and the robes of the holy saint are still preserved in the shrine.


Haripur Gas Field
Twenty two kilometers from Sylhet town is the Haripur Gas Field and at 35 km. point is the Jaintiapur's Rajbari.

Only 5 km. from Jaintiapur is Jaflong, a scenic spot amidst tea gardens. At about 35 km. north-west of Sylhet town, linked by rail, road and river is Chhatak, the seat of Assam Bengal Cement Factory, Chhatak is famous for orange garden.

Madhabkunda
About 3 km. from Dakhinbagh Railway Station, Madhabkunda, rich with famous waterfall attracts large number of tourists from home and abroad every year.


Madhabkunda waterfall, Sylhet

Tamabil & Jaflong

Situated amidst splendid panorama, Tamabil is a border outpost on Sylhet-Shilong Road about 55 km. away from Sylhet town. Besides enchanting views of the area one can also have a glimpse of the waterfalls across the border from Tamabil. Jaflong is also a scenic spot nearby amidst tea gardens and rate beauty of rolling stones from hills.



Srimangal

About 80 km. from Sylhet town connected by road and rail, Srimangal known as the tea capital of Bangladesh, is the actual tea center of the area. For miles and miles around, the visitor can see the tea gardens spread like a green carpet over the plain land or on the sloping hills.

Temple of Sri Chaitannya Dev
About 500 years old famous temple of Sri Chaitanya Dev is located at Dhaka Dakhin about 45 km south-east from Sylhet town. The place is revered from being the ancestral home of the famous Vaishnava saint. Yearly fair is organised on the fullmoon day of the Bangla month Falgun. Hundreds and thousands of devotees from home and abroad attend this colorful fair.

Shahi Eidgah
Three kilometers to the north-east of the circuit house, the Shahi Eidgah was built on a hill by the Mughal Emperor Aurangazeb in the 17th century. It looks like a grade fort but is actually meant for Eid congregations, the two biggest Muslim festivals.

Gour Gobinda Fort
The Murarichand Government College is situated in a beautiful surrounding on a hilltop. To the north-west of the college lie the remains of King Gour Govinda's Fort.

Jaintiapur
Situated 43 km. to the north of Sylhet town, on the Sylhet- Shillong road, Jaintiapur was the capital of an ancient kingdom which included the khasi and Jaintia Hills and plains of Jainta. Interesting ruins of this forgotten period lie scattered throughout Jaintiapur. A drive to Jaintiapur is an interesting and worthwhile experience.

Attractions

Manipuri Dance
An interesting feature of Sylhet region is the lifestyle of tribes such as the Tipperas, the Monipuris, Khasis and Garos who still live in their primitive ways in the hills, practicing their age-old rites, rituals, customs and traditions. During festivals such as, Rash Leela (Full-moon night in February) and Doljatra, the attractive young girls dressed in colorful robes, dance with the male members of their choice & love. The Monipuris perform their famous dance, based on allegorical love themes of the ancient mythology.

Handicrafts
Sylhet is well-known for its wide variety of exquiste handicrafts. Well-known Sylhet cane products such as chair, table, tea trays, flower vases, bags and the exquisitely designed fine Sital Pati (a kind of mattress having natural cooling effect) are colorful souvenirs.


BARISAL:


Barisal is located in south-central Bangladesh. Formerly a district, it is now a division. The town lies in the Ganges (Padma) River delta on an offshoot of the Arial Khan River. Incorporated as a municipality in 1876, it is a transshipment center for rice, hides, and pulses. It is linked by steamer with Dhaka (73 miles [117 km] north) and with Chittagong to the southeast. There is a medical college affiliated with the National University.

Barisal gives its name to a curious natural phenomenon known as Barisal guns, thundering noises heard in the delta and apparently coming from the sea. The sounds have not been satisfactorily explained but may have a seismic origin. Population of the area is 180,014 ( 1991).

Barisal Division consists of the districts of Barisal, Bhola, Pirojpur, Jhalkathi, Patuakhali and Barguna. The district of Barisal has 10 upazilas. Total area of the district is 2790.51sq. km. and population 22,07,426.



Barisal City
Skyline of Barisal City
Nickname(s): Chandradvipa
Location of Barisal in Bangladesh
Location of Barisal in Bangladesh
Coordinates: 22°48′0″N 90°30′0″E / 22.8°N 90.5°E / 22.8; 90.5
Country Bangladesh
Administrative District Barisal District
Government
- Mayor Shawkat Hossain Hiron
Area
- Total 16.37 km2 (6.3 sq mi)
Population (2007 est.)[1]
- Total 195,955
- Density 11,970/km2 (31,002.2/sq mi)
Time zone BST (UTC+6)

Barisal City is an old port on the Kirtankhola on the northern shore of the Bay of Bengal in southern Bangladesh. It is now the divisional headquarter of the Barisal Division and consists of 30 wards and 50 mahallas. The area of the town is 16.37 km². Barisal municipality was established in 1957 and was turned into a City Corporation in 2000.

Barisal City has one police academy.


History

Barisal was a semi-independent area in Mughal period. In course of time, it fell under Bengal Nawabs and British India, later passed to Bangladesh.

Following the partition of India in 1947, the area of Bangladesh became a province of Pakistan, initially known as East Bengal, and then, from 1955, as East Pakistan. The people of East Pakistan Province declared their independence as the nation of Bangladesh on March 26, 1971, while fighting a savage war against the central Pakistani government. The separation from Pakistan took place, with extensive aid from India, on December 16, 1971 as a result of the third Indo-Pakistan War. Bangladesh was soon recognized by most other nations, although Pakistan withheld diplomatic recognition until 1974 and China did not recognize the nation until 1976. Bangladesh was admitted to the United Nations in 1974.

The central city of this region is the city of Barisal. It is one of the biggest river port in Bangladesh. It is a city with nearly 0.38 million people and a divisional headquarter, medical college, cadet college, some pharmaceutical industries, textile industries and the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority's head office. Barisal is fast growing city of our country stands on the Kirtankhola River. Country's first short landing and take off airport has been completed over there in Barisal and a private Airlines named Air Bengal has begun its regular air flight between Dhaka Tejgaon Airport and Barisal.

Population

According to an estimate of 2007 Barasil has a population of 195,955; male 53.28%, female 46.72%. Literacy rate among the town people is 65%.

Population by Religion

  • Muslim 90.64%; Hindu 8.38% and Christian 0.98%.
  • Mosque: 130, church: 5
  • Temple: More than 200

Educational institutions

Bibir Pukur, Barisal

The city’s education institutions are one of country’ best.

  • University college: 1
  • Polytechnic institute: 1
  • Medical college: 1
  • Physical education college: 1
  • Teacher's training college: 2
  • Nursing institute: 1
  • Cadet college: 1
  • Government college: 7
  • Non-government college: 7
  • Government high school: 2
  • Non-government high school: 55
  • Junior school: 7
  • Government primary school: 175
  • Non-government primary school: 133.

Publications

  • Locally published newspapers and periodicals Dailies:

Shahnama, Probashi, Gram Samachar, Ajker Barta, Barisal Barta, Banglar Ban, Rupantar Sathi, Saikot Barta, Darpan, Dipanchal, Ajker Kantha; periodicals: weekly Lokabani, Bakerganj Parikrama, Chirantan Bangla, Upakul, periodicals Paira, the River, Etibriti, Khadem, Chirantan Bangla, Upakul, Samachar, Gournadi Parikrama; extinct; Barisal Bartabaha (1870), Hitasadhini (1871), Banglar Ranjika (1873), Kashipur Nibasi (1881), Swadesh (1885), Bharat Hitoishi (1882), Barisal Hiroishi (1885), Bikash (1900), Sahayogi (1885), Praddip (1927), Tarun (1923), Pathik (1925), Bahumihir (1926), Protiva Tangim (1949), Parimal Bahini (1859).

Land

  • Cultivable land: 219.03 km²
  • Single crop: 36.06%
  • Double crop: 46.57%
  • treble crop: land 17.37%.

Transport

  • Road: 200 km
  • Airport: 1
  • Port: Internal port

River is also a popular transport system with other district.The luxurious launch journey connects between the south and Dhaka city. It is one of the most enjoyable night journey ever you could get in your life. The launches are really royal, majestic and with pomp and pleasure. Some royal launches are:

  • MV Sundarban 7
  • MV Sundarban 8
  • MV Surovi 8
  • MV Surovi 7
  • MV Surovi 6
  • MV Dipraj
  • MV Parabat 11
  • MV Parabat 9
  • MV Parabat 7
  • MV Kirtonkhola 1
  • MV Kalam Khan

Economy

Barisal is a rice producing center of Bangladesh. Balam (a kind of baasmati) is the most popular rice in Barisal. It is also famous for Betel Leaf, a typical south Asian chewing item. As Barisal is surrounded by river so fish is plenty in there.It is said.. "Dhan (paddy) nadi (river) Khal (canal) ai tine Barisal." Means, paddy,river and canal this three thing makes Barisal. Coconut is very common in there as it is a costal area. Hog Plum in Barisal is very famous. Exports: Fish, medicine, bidi (local tobacco) and handicrafts.

Noted Barisaillas

See also

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