Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Bus Services in Bangladesh

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Sunday, May 19, 2013

Details of Kushtia District

Background, Geographic Area and Location: Kushtia zila comprises of only the sadar sub-division of former Kushtia zila. It is generally believed that the zila Kushtia might have derived its name from the word "Kushta" meaning Jute which was abundantly grown in this area.

The zila is bounded on the north by Rajshahi, Natore and Pabna zilas, on the east by Pabna and Rajbari zilas, on the south by Jhenaidah, Chuadanga and Meherpur zilas and on the west by Chuadanga and Meherpur zilas and India. It lies between 23°42´ and 24°12´ north latitude and between 88°42´ and 89°22´ east longitudes. The total area of the zila is 1608.80 sq.km (621.00 sq.miles).

Main Rivers: Ganges, Garai, Mathabhanga, Kaliganga and Kumar.

Annual Average Temperature: Maximum 37.8ºC and lowest 11.2ºC; annual rainfall 1467 mm.

Kushtia Municipality was established in 1969. Hamilton's Gazetteer has the mention of Kushtia (Kustee) town and local people call the town as Kushte. Kushtia is not an ancient town. It developed as a river port during the reign of Emperor Shahjahan. The East India Company made intensive use of the port but the growth of the town owes much to the settlement by the indigo planters and traders. The town was connected with Calcutta by rail in 1860; since then it experienced quick development and became a good location for mills and factories including those like the Renwick and Company (1904), Jagneshwar Engineering Works (1896) and the Mohini Mills (1919). The town got a new momentum for development with the establishment of the headquarters of the Ganges-Kobadak Project and a number of government offices in 1954.

Administration: Kushtia was once a part of the Nadia zila of the undivided India. It became a new zila in 1947 consisting of Kushtia Sadar, Chuadanga and Meherpur subdivisions. All these three subdivisions are now independent zilas. The zila consists of 6 upazilas, 66 unions, 707 mauzas, 978 villages, 5 paurashavas, 54 wards and 77 mahallas. The upazilas are KUSHTIA SADAR, KUMARKHALI, DAULATPUR, MIRPUR, BHERAMARA and KHOKSA.

Archaeological Heritage and Relics: Kuthibari of Rabindranath Tagore at Shilaidaha, tomb of Lalon Shah. Shahi Mosque (Mughal period), house of Mir Mosharraf Hossain at Lahinipara, tomb of Nafar Shah at Aruapara, tomb of Darvish Sonabandhu at Kumarkhali Bazaar, tomb of Jangli Shah at Safiyat Village, Jourgebari of Chandpur Village, Mahishkundi Indigo Kuthi, Kalidevi Mandir.

Historical Events: INDIGO RESISTANCE MOVEMENT spread in Bengal in 1860 and Shalghar Madhua organised the largest movement in the Kushtia zila. Inspired by the movement, all indigo farmers in the Kushtia area refused to pay government taxes. The British government sent an army platoon under the command of GG Morrison, to investigate into the matter. Farmers could successfully negotiate with him, committed to start paying taxes provided the indigo planters would stop torturing them and had sent the army back.

Marks of War of Liberation: Mass grave 10, monument 1, most noted memorial sculpture is the 'Muktabangla' at the Islami University.

Main Crops: Paddy, jute, sugarcane, pulses and oil seed.

Main Fruits: Mango, banana, jackfruit, lichi.

Traditional Transport: Palanquin, boat, bullock cart, horse carriage. These means of transport are either extinct or nearly extinct.

Main Export Items: Tobacco, betel leaf, banana and sugarcane.

Details of Kurigram District

Background, Geographic Area and Location: Kurigram was one of the sub-divisions of Rangpur distgrict. It was upgrated to a zila on the 1st February, 1984. Nothing is definitely known about the origin of the zila name. The most popular view goes with the fact that in the long past the present place of the zila sadar was a residential area of Kuri (Twenty in English) families of the Meech tribes in consequence of which the place was named as Kurigram. The zila is bounded on the north by India, on the east by India, on the south by Jamalpur and Gaibandha zilas and on the west by Lalmonirhat and Rangpur zilas. It lies between 25023' and 26014' north latitudes and between 89027' and 89054' east longitudes. The zila consists of 9 upazilas, 73 unions, 647 mouzas, 1907 villages, 2 paurashavas, 18 wards, and 122 mahallas. The total area of the zila is 2245.04 sq.km.

Annual Average Temperature: Maximum 32.3°C, minimum 11.2°C; annual rainfall 2931 mm.

Main Rivers: BRAHMAPUTRA, DHARLA, TISTA, DUDHKUMAR, Phulkumar, Sonaburi, Jinjiram Gangadhar, Halhali and Jalchira.

Administration: Kurigram subdivision was established in 1874 and was turned into a zila in 1984. The zila consists of 9 upazilas, 72 unions, 587 mauzas, 1872 villages, 3 paurashavas, 27 wards, 203 mahallas and 14 enclaves. The upazilas are BHURUNGAMARI, CHAR RAJIBPUR, CHILMARI, PHULBARI, KURIGRAM SADAR, NAGESHWARI, RAJARHAT, RAUMARI and ULIPUR.

Archaeological Heritage and Relics: Remnants of a mosque (Mughal period, 1176 AH) at Nayarhat (Rajarhat), remnants of a mosque near Patweshwari Bazar (Mughal period), three domed mosque (Mughal period) at village Majider Par of Thanahat Union (Bhurangamari), Arabic inscription of a mosque (Hussain Shahi period, now preserved at the Rajshahi Barendra Museum), Joymoni Zamindar Bari, Naodanga Zamindar Bari and Mandir (Phulbari), Pangeshwari Mandir and remnants of the Rajbari (Rajarhat), image of Kali at Dasherhat, images of Mangal Chandi, Kamakkha Devi, Laksmi and Sattanarayan in front of the Bhetarbandh Zamindar Bari, Kali Siddheshwari Mandir (Ulipur), two canons of Panga Kingdom (preserved at the BDR Gate).

Historical Events: Devi Chaudharani and Bhabani Pathak revolted against the British. They built their secret hermitages in the deep forests. They conducted many encounters against the British and their collaborators during 1760-1783. Quit-India Movement, Tebhaga Movement and Satyagraha Movement spread over Kurigram. During the War of Liberation Raumari, Rajibpur (except Kodalkati union) and Phulbari upazilas were beyond the reach of the Pak army. Many direct encounters between the Freedom Fighters and the Pak army were held in this zila in which about 100 Freedom Fighters were killed.

Marks of the War of Liberation: Mass killing site and mass grave: Kurigram food office, Jailkhana Gate, in front of the Bungalow of SP (Kurigram), Chilmari, backyard of the residence of the TNO of Bhurungamari, backyard of the Hospital (Bhurungamari), Ulipur Dakbungalow, Hatia Dagar Kuthi and Dharani Bari Madhupur (Ulipur); about 30-32 human skulls have been discovered from the backside of the residence of Altaf Uddin Compounder of village Baghbhandar under Bhurungamari union; memorial monument at the turn of the Kurigram College; Chandipukur (Nageshwari), memorial plank of martyr freedom fighters (Ghosh Para, Kurigram), a memorial plank with names of 18 freedom Fighters in front of the Ulipur Muktijoddha Office.

Main Crops: Paddy, jute, wheat, potato, corn, chilli, peanut, bamboo, betel nut, betel leaf, pulses, vegetable. Extinct or nearly extinct crops Indigo, dhemsi, kaun, china, pumpkin, linseed, sesame, aus paddy.

Main Fruits: Mango, jackfruit, black berry, litchi, papaya, banana, olive, amra, chalta, boroi, notko, kamranga.

Traditional Transport: Palanquin, bullock cart, buffalo cart and horse carriage. These means of transport are either extinct or nearly extinct.

Main Exports Items: Jute, paddy, peanut, bamboo, potato, peanut, betel nut, chicken.

Details of Kishoreganj District

Background, Geographic Area and Location: Kishioreganj emerged as a sub-division of former Mymensingh zila in 1960. It was turned into zila on the April, 1984. It is said that there was an influential zamindar named Krishan Das Bashak in this region. The name of one of his sons was Nanda Kishore who set up a trading centre (meaning Ganj in Bengali) in the present zila headquarters. It is believed that the zila name has been derived from the words Kishore and Ganj . The zila is bounded on the north by Netrokona zila on the east by Habiganj and Brahmanbaria zilas, on the south by Narsingdi and Brahmanbaria zilas and on the west by Mymensingh, Gazipur and Narsingdi zilas. The total area of the zila is 2688.59 sq. km. (1038.00 sq. miles). The zila lies between 2402 and 2439 north latitudes and between 9015 and 9115 east longitudes.

The soil formation of the zila is alluvial sand coming from Brahmaputra, Meghna and other small rivers. The soil is fertile.

Annual Average Temperature: Maximum 33.3°C, minimum 12°C; annual rainfall 2174 mm. There are hills and hillocks on the northern and depressions on southern parts of the zila.

Main Rivers: OLD BRAHMAPUTRA, MEGHNA, Kalni, Dhanu, Ghorautra, Baurii, Narasunda, Piyain; main depressions: Humaipur (Bajitpur), Somai (Nikli), Barir (Mithamain), Surma Baula (Nikli), and Tallar Haors (Nikli-Bajitpur-Austagram).

Kishoreganj municipality was established in 1869. The area of the town is 19.57 sq km. It has two dakbungalows.

Administration: Kishoreganj zila was established in 1984; earlier it was a subdivision under the Mymensingh zila. The subdivision was established in 1860. The zila consists of 13 upazilas, 108 unions, 841 mauzas, 1725 villages, 8 paurashavas, 75 wards and 228 mahallas. The upazilas are AUSTAGRAM, BAJITPUR, BHAIRAB, HOSSAINPUR, ITNA, KARIMGANJ, KATIADI, KISHOREGANJ SADAR, KULIARCHAR, MITHAMAIN, NIKLI, PAKUNDIA and TARAIL.

Archaeological Heritage and Relics: JANGALBARI FORT (fifteenth century), EGARASINDHUR FORT (fifteenth century), SADI MOSQUE (1652), Salanka Jame Mosque at Pakundia, Gurai Mosque at Bajitpur (1680), Kutub Shah Mosque at Austagram (1538), Jawar Saheb Bari Mosque at Tarail (1534), Badshahi Mosque at Itna (seventeenth century), Bhagalpur Dewan Bari Mosque at Bajitpur (eighteenth century), Sekandarnagar Mosque at Tarail (eighteenth century), Hazrat Samsuddin Bokhari Mosque Kurikhai at Katiadi (1005), Chandrabati Shiva Mondir (sixteenth century), Delhi Akhra at Mithamain, Arabic stone inscription discovered at village Ghagra, Nataraj Shiva Sculpture discovered at Nikli (fourteenth century), Krishnadas' deed for Nandakishore Pramanik discovered at Kishoreganj Sadar (1759).

Historical Events: In the ancient time Kishoreganj area was included in the kingdom of the Kamrupa. In the 11th and 12th century the Pala, Varman and Sena kings ruled this area or part of it. After that there arose petty independent kingdoms under the Koch, Hajong, Garo and Rajbanshi. Although in 1491 AD the greater part of Mymensingh was included within the Muslim rule under Firoz Shah, Kishoreganj remained outside. Greater part of Kishoreganj was included in the Mughal Empire during the rein of the Mughal Emperor AKBAR. But some areas including Jangalbari and EGARASINDHUR remained under the Koch and Ahom kings. In 1538 AD the Ahom king of Egarasindhur was defeated by the Mughals and in 1580 the Koch Chief of Jangalbari was defeated by ISA KHAN. The episode of the conflict between the Mughal Commander Man Singh and Isa Khan, the Chief of the BARA-BHUIYANS in 1580 and the defeat of Man Singh at Egarasindhur are still current. Though after the death of Isa Khan in 1599 the grater part of Kishoreganj was still under the rule of his son MUSA KHAN who ultimately seceded to the Mughals.

Marks of War of Liberation: Memorial at Karaitala, monument in memory of martyr Khairul Jahan at Parabhanga.

Main Crops: Paddy, jute, wheat, mustard seed, pulse, potato, peanut, corn, sugarcane and vegetables.Extinct or nearly extinct crops Kaun, local varieties of paddy.

Main Fruits: Banana, palm, tetul, chalta, lichee, olive, latkon, khira, jambura, amloki, hartaki, ata.

Traditional Transport: Palanquin, bulock cart, buffalo cart, horse carriage, elephant, gaina boat. These means of transport are either extinct or nearly extinct.

Main Export Items: Paddy, jute, banana, chicken, vegetables, lichi, mustard seed, peanut.

Details of Khulna District

Background, Geographic Area and Location: Khulna zila was the first subdivision of undivided Bengal in 1842. It was upgraded to a zila in 1882. Nothing is definitely known about the zila name. Local tradition states that the area is called after Khullana, a heroine of Hindu mythology who dedicated to kali, a shrine called the temple of the Khullaneswari on the bank of the river Bhairab. The zila is bounded on the north by Jessore and Narail zilas, on the east by Bagerhat zila, on the south by the Bay of Bengal and on the west by Satkhira zila. The zila lies between 22°12' and 23°59' north latitudes and between 89°14' and 89°45' east longitudes. The total area of the zila is 4394.45 sq. km. (1696.00 sq. miles) including 2348.55 sq. km. (906.78 sq. miles) forest areas.

Annual Average Temperature: Maximum 35.5°C and lowest 12.5°C; annual rainfall is 1710 mm.

Main Rivers: Rupsa-Pasur, Bhairab, Shibsha, Dharla, Bhadra, Ball, and Kobadak.

Forest: SUNDARBANS (1,66,814 hectares).

Administration: Khulna zila was established on 1882. The area of the town is 20.60 sq km. The zila consists of 14 upazilas/thanas, 68 unions, 747 mauzas, 1106 villages, 1 City Corporation, 31 city wards, 188 city mahallas, 2 paurashava, 18 wards and 20 mahallas.The upazilas are BATIAGHATA, DACOPE, DUMURIA, DIGHALIA, KOYRA, PAIKGACHHA, PHULTALA, RUPSA and TEROKHADA. The thanas are KHALISHPUR, KHAN JAHAN ALI, KOTWALI, DAULATPUR and SONADANGA.

Historical Events: In 16 December of 1971, Independent Bangladesh was established but Khulna was under the control of Pakistani Army. Next on 17 December as the Pakistani Army surrendered in the Circuit House ground, Khulna got her Independence. Pir Khan Jahan Ali came to preach Islam in this zila about 400 years ago. In 1926 Mahatma Gandhi came to Khalishpur to inspire the Swadeshi Movement.

Marks of War of Liberation: Sculpture 1 (Bir Bangali), Monument 5, Mass grave 3.

Religious Institutions: Mosque 1500, Tomb 4, Temple 646, Church 22, Place of pilgrimage 3, Monastery 1.

Main Crops: Paddy, jute, sesame, betel nut, and vegetable.

Main Fruits: Jackfruit, mango, banana.

Traditional Transport: Palanquin (extinct), horse carriage and bullock cart (nearly extinct), and boats.

Main Export Items: Paddy, rice, jute, sesame, betel nut, gur, mango, jackfruit, prawn.

Details of Khagrachari District

Background, Geographic Area and Location: Khagrachhari was formerly a sub-division of Chittagong Hill Tracts Zila. It was previously the headquarters of Ramgarh sub-division and became a sub-division in 1970 and was upgraded to a zila in 1983. Nothing is definitely known about the origin of the zila name. It is said that the existing zila headquarters is situated on the bank of the chengi stream(chhara) which was full of Catkin plants means ‘Khagra’ in local languages. This might be the origin of the zila name as Khagrachhari. It is bounded on the north by India, on the east by Rangamati zila, on the south by Chittagong and Rangamati zilas and on the west by India and Chittagong zila. It lies between 22˚38 and 23˚44 north latitudes and between 91˚44 and 92˚11 east longitudes. The total area of the zila is 2,749.16 sq. km (1061.00 sq. miles) of which 2242.44 sq. km is under forest. It is a hilly zila.

Temperature and Rainfall: Annual average temperature- maximum 34.6ºC, minimum 13ºC and rainfall 3031 mm.

The hills of this region are composed of folded sedimentary rocks. Notable hill ranges Alu Tila, Bhanga Mura (416.66 m), Matai Pukhiri (213.36m), Matai Lakho (274.32 m);

Main Rivers: Chingri, Maini, Feni and Halda; lake Mataipukhiri (Debotar pukur).

Khagrachhari (Town) was established in 1860 by Remrochai Chowdhury.

Administration: Khagrachhari subdivision was turned into a zila in 1983. The zila of Chittagong Hill Tracts was established in 1860 under the 'Frontier Tribes Act 22 of 1860'. Following the zila of Chittagong Hill Tract Regulation Act the Chittagong Hill Tract was divided into three subdivisions (included Khagracharri) in 1900. The Khagrachhari Local Government Legislative Council was formed in 1989 (in accordance with the Khagrachhari Hill Zilas Council, Act 20), which, on the basis of the historic 'Chittagong Hill Tracts Peace Accord', was turned into Khagrachhari Hill Zila Council on 2 December, 1997. The zila consists of 8 upazilas, 38 unions, 120 mauzas, 1702 villages, 3 paurashavas, 27 wards and 154 mahallas. The Upazilas are DIGHINALA, KHAGRACHHARI SADAR, LAKSHMICHHARI, MAHALCHHARI, MANIKCHHARI, MATIRANGA, PANCHHARI and RAMGARH.

Archaeological Heritage and Relics: Rajbari of the Mong Circle and Dighi (large pond) of Dighinala (excavated by Gobindo Manikko exiled king of Tripura).

Historical Events: The Chittagong Hill Tracts was under the reign of the Tripura State, the Arakans and the Sultans in different times before it came under the control of the British East India Company in 1760. Although the British got the authority of the Chittagong Hill Tracts in 1760, they had no authority besides collecting nominal taxes. Until 1860, two kings or chiefs governed the internal administration of this region. In 1860, another 'circle' was formed in present Khagrachhari zila, inhabited by the Tripura population. The chief or the Raja of this circle was selected from the minority Marma population. The 'circle' was named after the Tripura dialect the 'Mun Circle', but later, the 'Mun dialect', was changed and renamed as 'Mong Circle'. In 1900 the British offered independent status to Chittagong Hill Tracts recognising the culture and language of the hill tracts population. But during the Pakistan period this status was abolished, which created anger among the hill population. Moreover, due to the construction of the Kaptai dam in 1960, thousands of people became homeless and refugee. At this perspective the hill population revolted claiming autonomy. Through the Chittagong Hill Tracts peace Accord on 2 December 1997 this problem was resolved.

Marks of the War of Liberation: Mass grave1, memorial plank 1, memorial 2.

Main Crops: Paddy, corn, ginger, turmeric, pineapple, til (the seeds of which yield fine oil). Extinct or nearly extinct crops Maiguru, maibidi, sanki, manoful, chikon kuichari and maime.

Main Fruits: Papaya, pineapple, jackfruit, banana, mango, batabi labu (shaddock), litchi, coconut, lemon.

Traditional Transport: Elephant (extinct), horse carriage (nearly extinct) and boat.

Manufactories: Rubber processing plant, rice mill, flour mill, sawmill, etc.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Ashrafpur: Narsinghdi

Ashrafpur an archaeologically important village under Shibpur upazila of Narshingdi district. A villager named Mia Baksh Khan found two seventh century copper plates from a mound of the village in 1885. The copper plate inscriptions reveal that Devakhadga of the Khadga Dynasty granted lands for certain Buddhist Sanggha and Vihara. Old bricks and ramains of a ruined wall have been traced underneath the soil. No systematic excavation, however, could be possible in the site because of later human habitation. Scholars are of opinion that at the site there was a Buddhist Vihara and it was a centre of Buddhist religion and learning.

Ashrafpur Mosque an inscribed stone, which was once attached to the mosque and now preserved in the Bangladesh National Museum, reveals that the mosque was built in 930 AH/ 1524 AD by Dilwar Khan during the reign of Sultan Nasiruddin Abul Muzaffar Nusrat Shah (1519-1532).

The mosque, ruined by the earthquake of 1897, was abandoned, prayer in it discontinued and in course of time it got shrouded by jungle. In 1940 the jungle was cleared and the mosque recovered under the leadership of Moulana Syed Ali. Even at that time the Mihrab and a portion of the western wall was extant. It was a single domed small mosque built in the sultanate style. Later on a three-domed modern mosque has been built on the same site where once stood the Sultani mosque.

[Courtesy: Iftekhar Uddin Bhuiyan]