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Details of Bandarban District

Background: Bandarban was originally thana during British Period. Later it was turned into a Sub-division of Chittagong Hill Tracts District during Pakistan period. It was up-grated to a district in 1981. In the remote past, the present place of the district headquarters was abound with a large number of monkeys. The monkeys of this place used to cross the Sangu river every day forming a chain like line over the river in quest of fruits from the other side of the river forest and returned to the same place in the evening. The formation of chain like line by monkeys drew the attention by the local people who used to term it in their own language Myok Chay .In Bengali, Myok means Bandars and Chay means Bands. The name of Bandarban might be originated from these two words Bandars and Bands.

Geographic Area and Location: Bandarban district is bounded on the north by Rangamati district, on the east by Rangamati district and Myanmar, on the south of Myanmar and on the west of Chittagong and Cox’s Bazar districts. It lies between 21º11' and 22º22' north latitudes and between 92º04' and 92º41' east longitudes. The total area of the district is 4,479.03 sq.km(1729.36 sq miles) of which 2653.54 sq.km is under forest. The area of Bandarban town is 51.80 sq.km.

Main Rivers:The Shankha (Sangu) Matamuhuria and Bakkhali are the main rivers of this district.

Annual Average Temperature and Rainfall: The annual average temperature of this district varies from maximum 37º C to minimum 12.5º C. Annual average rainfall is 3031 mm.

Administration: Bandarban district was established in 1983, the district consists of 7 upazilas, 31 unions, 96 mauzas, 1554 villages, 2 paurashasavas, 18 wards and 103 mahallas. The upazilas are Alikadam, Bandarban Sadar, Lama, Naikhyongchari, RowangchariRuma and Thanchi.

Historical Events: The British rulers declared Bandarban as a forest zone because of its vast forest area devoid of human settlemant. The Arakanese were permanently settled in Banderban after the British ascendancy in Arakan.

Ethnic Nations: Marma, Murong, Tripura, Bawm, Tanchanga Chakma, Chak, Khyang, Khumi, Lushei and the Pankho are main ethnic nations of this district.

Educational Institutions: The numbers of educational institutions of this district are government college 5, government secondary school 9, non-government secondary school 28, residential school 3, government primary school 219, registered primary school 87, non-registered primary school 36, madrasah 10.

Locally Published Newspapers and Periodicals: The notable locally published newspapers and periodicals are Daily Natun Bangladesh, Daily Sangu, Daily Shochitra Monitry,Weekly Bandarban, Monthly Chimbuk, Monthly Nilachol etc.

Cultural Organizations: The numbers of cultural organization of this district are shishu academy1, shilpakala academy 1, public library 9, club 84, cinema hall 3 and tribal cultural institutions 1.

Main crops: Paddy, Cotton, tobacco, vegetables etc. are the main crops of this district.

Main fruits : Banana, pineapple, Jackfruit, Orange, Papaya, mango, lichi etc. are main fruits of this district.

NGO Activities: Operationally important NGOs are CCDB. CARITAS, BNKS, Green Hill, BITA, World Vision, GROUSE etc.

Health Centers: The numbers of health centers of this district are district sadar hospital 1, upazila health complex 7, union health and family planning centers 27.

Economic Situation: The economy of Bandarban is predominantly agricultural. Out of total 63,744 holdings of the district, 71.26% holdings are arriculture farm holding that produce varieties of crops, namely, local and HYV rice, wheat, vegetables, spices, cash crop, pulses, oil-seeds, maize and others. Various fruits like banana, jackfruit, coconut, guava etc are grown in the district. Fish of different varieties abound in this district and as in other parts of the country, varieties of fish are caught from rivers, tributary channels and creeks and from paddy fields during season. Besides crops livestock, forestry and fishery are the main source of household income. Out of 4479.03 sq. km. area of the district, forest and riverine areas occupy about 2730.48 sq. km. (60.96%) and 3.16 sq. km. (0.07%) respectively.