Saturday, January 19, 2013

Chuadanga; an Historic City in Bangladesh

Chuadanga, Bangladesh
Chuadanga (Bengali: চুয়াডাঙা; Chuađaņa) (Urdu and Punjabi: چوادانگا), Chuadanga district or Chuadanga Zilla (চুয়াডাঙা জেলা) is the name of a Western district (zilla) of Bangladesh. It is a part of the Khulna administrative division that covers most districts in the south-west of the country. 


According to Greek historians, as well as from geographical formations, this region formed a part of the kingdom of Gangaridhi. A city by the name of Gangey is also thought to be located in this region. 

During British rule, the region was the location of several uprisings, including Wahabi Movement (1831), Faraizi Movement(1838–47), Sepoy Rebellion (1857), Indigo Rebellion (1859–60), Khilafat Movement (1920), Swadeshi Movement (1906), Non-cooperation movement, Violation of Law and Salt Satyagraha (1920–40), Quit India Movement or August Revolt (1942). 

A Road in Chuadanga, Bangladesh
Under British rule, Chuadanga was a sub-division within Nadia District. During partition, in 1947, excepting Krishnanagar thana (still under Nadia in West Bengal). History of Chuadanga can be found in Nadia District Gazetteer during British rule. 

During Bangladesh Liberation War of 1971, Chuadanga was the location of some early battles between the Pakistan Army and the Mukti Bahini pro-independence forces. More than 100 battles took place here. On 26 March 1971, the first war command, the South Western Command of Bangladesh, was set up in this area, under the leadership of Major Abu Osman Chowdhury and Dr. Ashabul Haque Joarder (expired at 89 on 7 October 2010). Before that at about 09:30 in the morning of the same day in a makeshift public meeting arranged at Borobazar crossing, Dr. Ashabul Haque Joarder declared all out war against the occupation of Pakistan military forces. This region was also the place where Bangladesh Red Cross Society was founded. During the liberation war the government in exile declared Chuadanga to be the provisional capital of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. During the Bangladesh Liberation War more than one hundred documented direct encounters took place between the Pakistan Army and the freedom fighters (Mukti Bahini) in Chuadanga district. According to records Chuadanga was liberated from the hands of occupying Pakistan army on 7 December 1971, nine days before the invading army officially surrendered to the Mitro Bahini (allied forces of Mukti Bahini and Indian Army). 

Chuadanga in Bangladesh Map
Marks of the Liberation War genocide in the district include a spot behind the Chuadanga Central Hospital. 


The district has an area of 1,157.42 (km)². It shares domestic borders with the Kushtia District on the northeast, Meherpur on the northwest and Jhenaidaha on the south and southeast. On its southwest lies the Nadia District (in the state of West Bengal in India). The annual average maximum temperature is 40.1 °C and the average for the minimum is 8.2 °C, while 1,467 mm is received on average each year. The entire Chuadanga district lies within the Ganges Delta, with rivers Mathabhanga, Bhairab, Kumar, Chitra, and Nabaganga flowing through the district. 


The population of the district was 987,382 during the 2001 national survey with 50.82% male and female 49.18% compositions. 

Oldest Masjid in Chadanga, Bangladesh

The district of Chuadanga consists 3554 mosques, 218 temples, 13 churches and three Buddhist temples. 

The population, in majority with more than 96%, believe in Islam. Hindus contribut 2% of the population of the area being second largest relious community. A very few number of Christians and Buddhist are also there. They, as a whole, farm only 0.31% of the population. 


Average literacy rate is 70%, with a sizeable gap between male and female literacy rates at 75% and 60% respectively. 

Chuadanga Aliya Madrasha
The different kinds of educational institutions are as follows: 
  • Colleges - 12 
  • High schools - 48 
  • Junior schools - 7 
  • Government Primary schools - 257 
  • Non-government Primary schools - 120 
  • Primary Training institute - 1 
  • Vocational Training institute 1 
  • Nursing institute 1 
  • Madrasas - 63 
  • Kindergarten schools - 3 
  • English medium school -2 
Noted old educational institutions include the Victoria Jubilee Government High School (est. 1880), Alomdaņga pilot High School (est. 1914), Natudaôho High School (est. 1906),Carew's High School(1947), Gokulkhali High School ( est. 1947), Jibonnôgor Pilot High School (est. 1957),damurhuda pilot high school and Hajar Duari School. 
Victoria Jubilee High School, Chuadanga
According to the SSC (Secondary School Certificate) result some schools are really doing better. Among these Carew's High School, Victoria Jubilee High School,Government Girls' School and Nilmonigônj High School are mentionworthy. Are also Secondary Name: "BISHNUPUR SECONDARY SCHOOL" Is establish 1964 & Damurhuda upojila. 


Most of this small district is dedicated to agriculture. Occupational distributions clearly show this with agriculture employing 68% of the labour force, while only 12% are involved in commerce. Total cultivable land amounts to 894.20 km², of which 57% is under some sort of irrigation. 

A Market in Chuadanga, Bangladesh
Besides agriculture the district is now experiencing industrial growth. Major industries include Zaman Group of Industries, Bangas bread and biscuit, Tallu Spinning mills Ltd,Carew & Company Bangladesh Limited etc.Carew & Company Bangladesh Limited(1933),which is situated at Darshana of Damurhuda Upazilla of Chuadanga district is the largest sugar mill of Bangladesh,Carew & Company has a distillery also which is the lone wine producing plant of Bangladesh, Carew & Company Bangladesh Limited is an enterprise of Bangladesh Sugar & Food Industries Corporation(BSFIC). BSFIC is an autonomous body of Ministry Of Industries(Government of Bangladesh). 


Chuadanga is connected to four of its neighbouring districts (Kushtia; Jessore; Jhenidah and Meherpur) through inter-district highways and connected to Jessore and Kushtia through Railway.
Chuadanga Railway Station
The district is connected to the rest of the country by three highways and railway. There are 203 km of finished road, 211 km herring-bone and 132 km mud road. Total length of railway tracks is just over 50 km that connect the three railway stations inside the district with the country's railway network. 

The entire transportation system is comparatively better than other districts. You can access to any of its upa-zilla by 30 minutes travel by motor vehicle. To reach to Dhaka you need to spend 4 to 5 hours. To reach to Calcutta you need less time to reach Dhaka. That makes the place important during our liberation in 1971. 

Earlier the district was connected to other parts of the country by its major river The Matha Vanga but now the river route is invalid due to siltation on river beds. 

The people usually use Bus and train for long journey and for local travels they use Rickshaw, human pulled van etc. For personal use they use cycle and motor cycle frequently. 

For goods transportation, a human driven van called "Nosimon" is often used.

Beautiful Baro-Masjid in Chuadanga, Bangladesh
Karpashdanga is an old historical village of Chuadanga District, located in the border area of Bangladesh with West Bengal state of India. This village was famous in the region for rural business centre from long ago. The big Bazaar on the bank of the Bhairab river was one of the oldest rural commercial meeting place from the Mughal to the British era. There is a historical 'Nil-Kuthi' on the Bank of the river Bhairab. This 'Nil-Kuthi was one of the Head Quarters of the then East India Company during British Raj for administering the cultivation of indigo in this area. The main part of the Nil-Kuthi is now in a ruined state. The other part has been renovated and converted to a girl's secondary school in 1983. The old name of the village was 'Nishchintapur'. There is also a graveyard in the Nil-Kuthi area in Karpashdanga village used to bury the white people of East India company when they deceased. It is heard that one such name of a white man was Mr. Barkosh (locally people used to call him Barkosh shaheb) who was very tyrant administrator during British rule in that area. It is said as a proverb that he was such a ruler, he could force tigers and buffaloes to drink at the same place of the river without showing any hostility to each other. There is a large section about 'Kapasdanga' in Chapter 15 of Nadia District Gazetteer. 

Another historical event associated with Karpashdanga village is that the rebel poet Kazi Nazrul Islam stayed in this village for some time and during his participation with non-cooperation movement Swadeshi Movement organised against British Raj. There were few active members of the 'Shadehsi' group, whose descendant live in western area of Christian community in Karpashdanga. A Nazrul museum has been established in the local high school with the collection of items Kazi Nazrul Islam left in that house. There is a large Christian community in the village. There are two large churches belong to two groups of Christian e.g. catholic and Protestants. There is also a missionary hospital run by the Christian missionaries and is famous in the area for medical treatment facilities and care of patient.

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