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Details of Dhaka District

Background, Geographic Area and Location: Dhaka is the capital city of Bangladesh. The site of capital city was formerly a sub-division of Dhaka district. There are different views about the origin of the name. One opinion was that the name Dhaka was derived from the word Dhakka (meaning watch station) which was required to be set up to the water-ways near the present city of Dhaka. According to other opinion, the district name originated from the name of the prominent temple Dhakeswari. It is bounded on the north by Gazipur and Tangail district, on the east by Narayanganj district, on the south by Munshiganj and Faridpur district and on the west by Manikganj district. It lies between 23º 53' and 24º 06' north latitudes and between 90º 01' and 90º 37' east longitudes. The total area of the district is 1463.60 sq. km. (565.00 sq. miles).

Annual Average Temperature and Rainfall: Maximum 34.5°C, minimum 11.5°C and rainfall 1931mm.

Main Rivers: Padma, Kaliganga, Dhaleshwari, Ichamati, Shitalakshya, Buriganga; small rivers are Bangshi, Turag, Balu, Elamjani, Alam, Bherujkha, Ramkrishnadi, Elisamari, Tulsikhali.

Noted Beels: Beels Belai, Saldaher, Labandaher, Churain, Damsharan and Kiranjir Beel.

Dhaka (Town) stands on the bank of the river Buriganga. It consists of forty one thanas namely ADABOR, GULSHAN, NEW MARKET, BADDA, PALLABI, HAZARIBAG, BIMANBANDAR, CANTONMENT, DEMRA, DHANMONDI, KAFRUL, KAMRANGIR CHAR, KHILGAON, SUTRAPUR, TEJGAON, SHYAMPUR, KOTWALI, LALBAGH, MIRPUR, MOHAMMADPUR, MOTIJHEEL, UTTARA, RAMNA, SABUJBAGH, BANGSHAL, CHAK BAZAR, DAKSHINKHAN, DARUS SALAM, GENDARIA, JATRABARI, KADAMTALI, KALABAGAN, KHILKHET, PALTAN, RAMPURA, SHAH ALI, SHAHBAGH, SHER-E-BANGLA NAGAR, TEJGAON INDUSTRIAL AREA, TURAG and UTTAR KHAN.

Dhaka municipality was established in 1864 and was turned into a Town Committee in 1960. The name of the Town Committee was changed to Dhaka Municipality in 1972. It was turned into a Municipal Corporation in 1983. Finally it was elevated to City Corporation in 1991. Dhaka is the capital city of Bangladesh. The town has 88 cinema halls, 351 clubs, 55 playground, 136 government and private hospitals and clinics, 4 parks, 4 national stadiums, 17 public and private universities, 4 government medical colleges, 11 private medical colleges. Other important establishments include Bangladesh Supreme Court, High Court, Judge Court, diplomatic missions of many countries, Bangladesh Secretariat, National Museum, National Zoo, and head offices of various sectors and corporations, government departments, business houses and NGOs.

Administration: Dhaka district was established in 1772. The district consists of 46 upazilas/thanas, 86 unions, 974 mauzas, 1999 villages, 1 City Corporation, 92 City Wards, 855 City Mahallas, 3 paurashavas, 27 wards and 133 mahallas. The upazilas are Dhamrai, Dohar, KeraniganjNawabganj and Savar.

Archaeological Heritage and Relics: LALBAGH FORT and the tomb of Bibi Pari (1668), BARA KATRA (1641), CHHOTA KATRA and the tomb of Bibi Champa (1663), Ancient Fort and the palace of the Nawab (Jail Hospital, 1638), AHSAN MANZIL (1872), HUSAINI DALAN (1642), Binod Bibi Mosque (1456 AD), Seven Domed Mosque (1676), Chawk Mosque (1676), Bibi Meher Mosque (1814), Armanitola Mosque (1716), Khawja Shahbaj Mosque (1679), Shayesta Khan Mosque (1664-78), Khawja Ambar Mosque (1677-78), Moriam Saleh Mosque (1706), Sitara Begum Mosque (1815), Farruk Shayer Mosque (1703-1704), Tara Mosque, Azimpur Mosque (1746), Kartalab Khan Mosque (1700-1704), Holy Rosary Church (1678), Setara Begum Mosque (1819), Bagmara Math (Nawabganj), Home stead of Raja Harish Chandra (eighteenth century, Savar), Shree Shree Sani Ashram and Math (1199 AD), Dhakeshwari Mandir (eventeenth century), Jaykali Mondir, Bahadur Shah Park, Nimtali Deuri (Asiatic Society of Bangladesh, 1765).

Historical Events: Once upon a time Dhaka was ruled by the Hindu Kings. The Pala and the Sena dynasties ruled Dhaka for many years. It was not until early fourteenth century when the Muslim rulers began to come to Bengal. Dhaka was made the capital of Bengal in 1608 and Islam Khan renamed Dhaka as Jahangirnagar after the name of Emperor Jahangir. In the eighteenth century Dhaka lost political importance when Murshid Quli Khan transferred the capital of Bengal from Dhaka to Murshidabad. But Dhaka never lost its commercial importance.

Dhaka is very closely related with the politics of the post 1947 political history. Mentions may be made of LANGUAGE MOVEMENT of 1952, six-point programme of 1966, mass upsurge in 1969, historic speech of BANGABANDHU SHEIKH MUJIBUR RAHMAN on 7 March 1971, signing the document of surrender of Pak army on 16 December 1971, etc. During the War of Liberation the Pak army conducted massive killings and plundering in Dhaka.

Once indigo was being cultivated centring round Joypara of Dohar upazila. During 1920s the people of Dhaka were seriously influenced by the Non Co-operation Movement led by Mahatma Gandhi. Avay Ashram was established at Dohar in 1922-23 following the ideals of Gandhi. The All India Convention of Gandhi Seba Sangha was held at village Malikandha of Dohar upazila in 1940. On this occasion Gandhi came here and stayed for two days.

Marks of the War of Liberation Mass grave: Near Kalampur Bazar (Dhamrai), South Kamlapur (Dhaka), NATIONAL MARTYRS' MEMORIAL (Savar), mass killing site at Rayerbazar, Memorial Monument for intellectuals at Mirpur, Central Shaheed Minar, Amar Ekushey and Sangsaptak Sculptures (Jahangirnagar University), Aparajeyo Bangla and Soparjita Swadhinata (Dhaka University), Shahid Jahangir Gate, etc.

Noted Graveyards: Azimpur, Banani and Narinda Christian graveyard

Main Crops: Paddy, jute, wheat, potato, peanut, onion, garlic, chilly, ginger, betel nut, pulse, corn, sugarcane and vegetables. Extinct or nearly extinct crops are Asha Kumari and Koulgi paddy, linseed, sesame, jute, cotton, mustard seed, china, chhola and kaun.

Main Fruits: Mango, jackfruit, papaya, guava, olive, coconut, kul and banana.

Major Communication Hubs: Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport, Kamlapur Railway Station, Sadarghat Launch Terminal and the bus stands at Saidabad, Gabtali and Mahakhali.

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

Manufacturing Industries: Ceramic industry, beverage industry, press and publication, garments industry, foot ware, jute mills, textile mills, printing and dying factory, transformer industry, automobile industry, biscuit and bread factory, pharmaceutical industry, cosmetic industry, soap factory, rice mill, flour mill, ice factory, ball pen industry, polythene industry, saw mill, brick field, cold storage, weling, plant nursery, etc. Besides, there are many spare parts work shops at Nawabpur, Bangshal, Dholai Khal Par and Sutrapur areas of Dhaka.

Cottage industries weaving, jamdani sari, brass and bronze works, bamboo and cane works, goldsmith, blacksmith, potteries, wood work. Once MUSLIN of Dhaka was famous.

Hats Bazars and Fairs:

Hats: Gabtali Cattle Market, Sarulia Hat (Demra Upazila), Dhamrai, Shreerampur, Kalampur (Dhamrai Upazila), Joypara, Kartikpur, Dohar, Medhula (Dohar Upazila).

Bazars: Karwan Bazar, Captan Bazar, Waiz Ghat, Chawk Bazar, Tanti Bazar, Thatari Bazar, Naya Bazar, Bangla Bazar, Babu Bazar, Moulvi Bazar, Rayer Bazar, Siddique Bazar, Swari Ghat;

Markets and Shopping Centres: Dhaka New Market, Baitul Mukarram Super Market, Gulshan Market, Pir Eamini Market, Aziz Super Market, Eastern Plaza, Elephant Road, Banga Bazar, Mauchak, Dhanmondi Hawkers' Market, Gaochia Market.

Fairs: Dhaka International Trade Fair, Ekushey Book Fair, Ramna Baishaki Mela, Dhamrai Rath Jatra Mela, Dhamrai Poush Samkranti Mela, Bahauttar Prahar Mela at Savar, Bairagi Mela at Nawabganj.

Residential Hotels: Ruposhi Bangla (Dhaka Sheraton) Hotel, Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel, Hotel Purbani, Hotel Sundar Ban, Hotel Westin, Hotel Raddison etc.

Main Exports: Rice, mustard seed, vegetables, peanut, banana, coconut, jackfruit, ready made garments, medicine, cosmetics, electronics, electrical goods etc.