Chittagong

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Chittagong (Bengali: চট্টগ্রাম, Ch˘ţţogram) is a city in southeastern Bangladesh and the capital of an eponymous district and division. Built on banks of the Karnaphuli River, the city is home to Bangladesh's busiest seaport and has a population of over 2.5 million, making it the second largest city in the country.[4]

Located between the Chittagong Hill Tracts and the Bay of Bengal, Chittagong is a major commercial and industrial center as much of Bangladesh's export and import passes through the Port of Chittagong. The port has extensive facilities which are undergoing further development as Bangladesh prepares to serve as a transit country between North East India, Nepal, Bhutan, Southwest China and parts of Burma.[5][6][7] According to a report released by International Institute for Environment and Development, Chittagong is among the ten fastest growing cities in the world.[8] Much of the city is surrounded by hilly terrains, and is experiencing rapid urban growth along with increased congestion.[9]

During the 16th and 17th centuries the city was a Portuguese colony known by the name Port Grande[10] and Islamabad[11] [12][13] and then a part of the Arakan Kingdom, before falling under Mughal rule in 1666. In 1930, Bengali revolutionaries led by Surya Sen launched the Chittagong uprising against the British Raj, during which British armories, telegraph and telephone offices in the city were attacked and hundreds of Europeans were assassinated in the Chittagong Club.[14] During the Burma Campaign of the Second World War, Chittagong's port served as a major supply line for Allied forces while its airport was a major station for US Air Force combat aircraft.[15] After the Partition of India, the city became a part of East Pakistan. During the Bangladesh Liberation War, Chittagong witnessed some of the heaviest fighting with the Mukti Bahini attacking Pakistani navy ships and the Indian navy firing missiles at Pakistani naval installations. It was in Chittagong where Awami League leader M A Hannan and liberation war hero and future Bangladeshi president Ziaur Rahman famously announced the declaration of independence of the country on behalf of independence leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Chittagong was also where the assassination of President Ziaur Rahman had taken place during a failed mutiny in 1981.

n, Life, Karnafuli, Jyoti, Rashtrobarta and Azan. Furthermore, there are a number of weekly and monthly newspapers. These include weeklies are Chattala, Jyoti, Sultan and the monthlies are Sanshodhani, Purobi, Mukulika, Simanto. The only press council in Chittagong is the Chittagong Press Club. Government owned Bangladesh Television and Bangladesh Betar have transmission centers in Chittagong. Chittagong has been featured in all aspects of popular culture such as television, movies, journal, music and books. Almost all the TVs and radios of Bangladesh have coverage in Chittagong. Renowned Bollywood film director Ashutosh Gowariker is directing a movie based on the 1930s Chittagong Uprising[23] where Abhishek Bachchan will play the lead role.[24][25]

Tourism

Chittagong Hill Tracts, one of the tourist attractions of Bangladesh

The city of Chittagong is a major tourist attraction in Bangladesh. Its green hills and forests, its broad sandy beaches and its fine cool climate always attract the holiday-markers. Described by the Chinese traveler poet, Huen Tsang (7th century AD) as "a sleeping beauty emerging from mists and water" and given the title of "Porto Grande" by the 16th century Portuguese seafarers. Chittagong is filled with dense green forests, endless rolling hills, a moderate climate and breathtaking beaches. Since the 7th century, Chittagong has been mentioned in many documents as a seaport of mystical beauty and magnificent charm. The bustling harbor stands in stark contrast to the tranquility and peaceful surroundings of the city.[26]

Chittagong Hill Tracts

The Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) comprising an area of 13,180 km2 in south-eastern Bangladesh, is the only hill intensive area of Bangladesh. CHT consisting Rangamati, Khagrachari and Bandarban districts is home to country's largest concentration of at least 11 different ethnic groups and is a unique part of the country both in terms of landscape and its people.[27] The ethnic groups are bound together by a shared history, years of peaceful cohabitation, and a common future. They differ from the majority Bengali population of Bangladesh in their physical features, culture and religion. However, nearly all the indigenous peoples also include traditional indigenous elements in their formal religious beliefs and practices.[28]

Patenga beach

Patenga beach

Patenga Beach is a popular tourist spot. The beach lies approximately twenty kilometers outside the city of Chittagong, and located near to fascinating landmarks including the Shah Amanat International Airport and the BNS Isha Khan Naval Base. It is located at the 'Karnaphuli' River mouth and stretches to the Bay of Bengal which ensures a constant influx of travelers and visitors from home and abroad. The beach width is narrow and swimming in the seas is not recommended. Part of the seashore is built-up with concrete walls. Also large blocks of stones have been laid out to prevent erosion. During 1990s a host of restaurants and kiosks have sprouted out around the beach area. After the sun-down, drug-peddlers start to approach visitors. Also, alcohol peddling is very common. Lighting of the beach area has enhanced the security aspect of visiting in the evening. Vendors from the city flock to Patenga Beach to sell their selection of ice creams, cold drinks and food to the hundreds of tourists who come to Patenga Beach. The beach is lined with massive shady palm trees and fishing boats. It is quite sandy, with a few rocky patches here and there. Most visitors come to 'Patenga' Beach as it is known for having some of the most stunning sunsets and sunrises in Bangladesh.[26]

Foy's Lake

A view of the Foy's Lake

Foy's Lake is a human-made lake in Chittagong, Bangladesh. The lake was once just a lake and spillway constructed by Assam-Bengal Railway engineer. It was dug in 1924 and was named after the English engineer Mr. Foy. The lake is next to Batali Hill, the highest hill in Chittagong Metropolitan area. An amusement park, managed by the Concord group, is located here which features usual theme park rides and attractions as well as boat rides on the lake, landscaping, restaurants, concerts with floating stages, scenic walking trails and many other fun activities. The park includes a water theme park, resort and an amusement center. The Chittagong Zoo is next door. Chittagong is known as the land of saints, darwishes and fakirs. Several mosques and shrines bear testimony to their presence in the city.[17]

Heritage Park

There is a heritage park called Shaheed Zia Memorial Complex and Mini Bangladesh at Chandgaon which reflects the most notable structures and instances of Bangladesh. This 71-metre tower in Mini Bangladesh in Chittagong has a restaurant on the top that rotates once every 90 minutes.[29] The museum includes a revolving restaurant. One can perceive of the country's architectural beauty, ethnic traditions and archaeological inheritance through having a glimpse of the heritage park. Replica of major structures of the country, includes Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban (parliament building), National Memorial of Savar, Ahsan Manzil, Curzon Hall of Dhaka University, Paharpur Monastery, Kantajew Temple of Dinajpur, Lalbagh Fort and Sona Masjid. The park also has different rides for children.[30]

[edit] Chittagong Ethnological Museum

Chittagong Ethnological Museum

The Chittagong Ethnological Museum, countryĺs lone ethnological museum, offers the visitors the chance to acquaint with the lifestyles and heritage of various ethnic groups of the country. It was established in 1965. The museum authorities had collected rare elements used in everyday lives of different ethnic groups, of which some had already become extinct while some were on the verge of extinction. The museum contains four galleries and a small hall. Three galleries of the museum feature diverse elements of 25 ethnic groups, including Chakma, Marma, Tongsinga, Khumi, Murang, Sautal, Garo, Chak, Monipuri, Palia, Tipra, Hajang, Lusai, Shimuji, and Bom while the rest gallery displays the lifestyles of some racial groups of India, Pakistan, and Australia.[31] The sculptures of the people of different ethnic communities and a piece of broken Berlin Wall draw the visitors especially the children who can get impression of different festivals, livelihoods, and cultures of the communities from the murals set up at the hall room. These are reminiscent of the museum in the film 'Planet of the Apes'.[32] People between 200 and 300 visits the museum every day in addition to a number of researchers from home and abroad.

World War II cemetery and Zia Memorial Museum

Zia Memorial Museum

The War Cemetery on Badshah Mia Road is another place of historic interest. It contains the graves of 755 soldiers of the Allied Forces who laid down their lives on the Indo-Burmese front during World War II. Most of the soldiers buried there were from Australia, Britain, Canada, East and West Africa, British India and New Zealand. The total area of the cemetery is eight acres and it is protected and maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.[33] There are a number of museums in Chittagong. The most prominent is the Zia Memorial Museum which is housed in the old circuit house building. President Ziaur Rahman was assassinated there on 30 May 1981. This commemorative museum houses the Late President Ziaur Rahman's mementos and personal belongings. It was established in 1993 with 12 galleries.[34]

Economy and development

GEC circle, the commercial hub of Chittagong city.

The sea-borne exports consist chiefly of ready made garments, knitwear, frozen food, jute and jute products, 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. Sailing ships built in Chittagong include the Betsey, the Argo, and the Mersey. 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. Chittagong is also home to a large number of industries from small to heavy. Around 40% of the heavy industrial activities of the country is located in Chittagong city and adjacent areas, which include dry dock, Dock Yards, Oil Refinery, Steel Mills, Power Plant, Cement clinker factory, automobile industries, pharmaceutical plants, chemical plants, cable manufacturing, textiles mills, jute mills, urea fertilizer factory along with other private sector medium size industrial developments and activities.[2] A Korean company, Youngone Corporation, has established a special Korean Export Processing Zone (KEPZ) in the port city of Chittagong. The KEPZ is built on a land area of nearly 1,000 hectares and is expected to attract foreign direct investment worth $1 billion.[35] There is as well a Karnaphuli Export Processing Zone, with the same acronym (KEPZ) [36]

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.[37] 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 of Bangladesh such as Galacticos Incorporation, 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

Most of the International trading are believed to be done from Khatunganj & Asadganj area. The Sawdagars (traditional businessman) of Chittagong still controls the entire Bangladesh Market in this import oriented country. Agrabad is often known as Chittagong's chief commercial region. Banks like HSBC, Standard Chartered, Citibank, Dutch Bangla Bank, BRAC Bank, Dhaka Bank Limited, Bangladesh Bank, Eastern Bank, Sonali Bank, Rupali Bank and all other banks operating in Bangladesh have offices in and around 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.[38]

The Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) is primarily responsible for framing and implementing the Master Plan for city development. The CDA makes and implements plans for area development (i.e. commercial areas, residential areas and recreational areas) and city road development in accordance with the approved Master Plan for the city. In 2000, manufacturing industry of Chittagong contributed 15% of the total GDP.[39] According to CityMayors Statistics[2] 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.[40]

 

Education

Cheragi Pahar Circle

Educational facilities in the city are substantially provided by the Ministry of Education, supplemented by the service provided by the City Corporation, NGOs and the private sector. Chittagong University, Chittagong Medical College and Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology are totally funded by the government. Chittagong is home to two of the nation's most prominent public universities, and is the site of one of Bangladesh's 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 centers. 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 enrollment is more than 15,000.

The other public university is Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology

established in 1968. Formerly, it was named Bangladesh Institute of Techonology (BIT). At present this university, 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 knowledge 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.

At present, in Chittagong, there are some more private universities like BGC Trust University Bangladesh(2002),International Islamic University Chittagong (IIUC)(1995)University of Science and Technology-USTC(1992), Southern University Bangladesh(1998), Premier University (PU),East Delta University,University of Information Technology & Sciences(UITS) and Independent University Bangladesh (IUB). Notably, Premier University is run by Chittagong City Corporation (CCC). The multi-national Asian University for Women was established in 2008 with an inaugural class of 130 young women from Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, India, Pakistan and Cambodia. 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.

Some examples of private medical colleges of Chittagong are: Chittagong Ma O Shishu Medical College, Southern Medical College, Chittagong International Dental College, BGC Trust Medical College, university of science & tecnology ctg (1992)

etc.

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. Conspicuous examples of government schools in Chittagong are Chittagong Collegiate School (1836), Chittagong Government High School (1906),Ctg cantonment public college(1961), Government Muslim High School (1909), Nasirabad Government High School, Chittagong Government Girls' High School, Dr. Khastagir Government Girls' High School (1878), Hazi Muhammad Mohsin Government High School, Kazem Ali High School (1885), Aparnacharan City Corporation Girls' High School (1927), Krishna Kumari City Corporation Girls' High School, Municipal Model High School (1880), City Girls' School Chittagong,Hathey Khari School (1976) etc.

On the other hand, Chittagong possesses lots of government and non governmental primary school. It also has so many English medium schools like William Carey Academy (Best School), Chittagong Grammar School, Mastermind School, Cider International School, Sunshine Grammar School, Radiant School etc. In the city, Institute for Islamic and general study (Madrasha) are also available such as Baitush Sharaf Ideal Kamil Madrasah(1982), Darul Ulum alia Madrasah (1913), Jamiya Ahmadia Sunnia Alia Madrasah (1954) and Nesaria Alia Madrasah

Chittagong College (1869),Government Commerce College (1948) Hazi Muhammad Mohsin College (1979), Chittagong Government Girls' College (1957), Fauzdarhat Cadet College (1958), Enayet Bazar woman College (1970), Government City College (1954),Hazera Tazu Degree College, Chittagong Cantonment Public College, Ispahani Public College, Agrabad woman college, etc. are the main colleges of this city.

[edit] Literary Publication Institution

  • Shoili (Publisher- Rashed Rouf), Lushai Bhabon, Cheragi Pahar.

  • Balaka (Publisher- Jamal Uddin), Kadommobarrok Etimkhana Market, Momin Road.

  • Prottayalir (Publisher- Shobuj Taposh), 245 Southland Center, Agrabad.

Health

Health services are mainly provided by hospitals run by the Health Ministry. The City Corporation has its own Health Services and hospitals which supplement the services provided by the government and the NGOs. There are a number of NGO-run clinics in addition to mushrooming private clinics, which are run on a commercial basis. Chittagong Medical College Hospital is the largest government-run health service provider. This huge medical has so many wards, cabins and units. At present this medcal also provide treatment of ICU and CCU for the serious patients. Other medical service institutes include General Hospital, Upazila Health Complex,Family Welfare Center, TB Hospital, Infectious Disease Hospital, Diabetic Hospital, Mother and Children Hospital and Police Hospital. Notably, the total health service of Chittagong is intensificating day by day. At present, many non government hospitals and clincs also belong to the city. Chittagong Metropoliton Hospital, Surgiscope Hospital, CSCR, Centre Point Hospital, National Hospital etc. are the noteworthy non government hospitals and clinics Chittagong City.

Transport

GEC Circle Chittagong

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 meter 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.

Chittagong City is connected with the rest of Bangladesh by a network of coastal water routes. Coastal vessels carry most of the bulk cargo from Chittagong to other important trading centres in the country. Among the important items carried are fuel oil, cement, food grains and salt. Passenger service along the coastal route was never very popular and safe.

Dialect

Many Chittagong natives speak Chittagonian (চাটগাঁইয়া ChaţgaiŃ), an Indo-European language of the Eastern Indic group. A large number of Arabic words and transformed Arabic words are used in this dialect. This is due arrival of traders and saints from Arabian Peninsula hundred years ago. 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.[41]

 Sports

Chittagong has produced many cricketers, footballers, athletes. Tamim Iqbal, Akram Khan, Aftab Ahmed are some of the most prominent figures among them. Cricket is the most popular sport in Chittagong, while football, tennis, kabaddi are also much popular. A number of stadium are located in Chittagong. The MA Aziz Stadium is the main stadium in Chittagong. It is one of the most famous cricket grounds in Bangladesh. It has a seating capacity of 20,000 and hosts football matches as well as cricket.[42] MA Aziz Stadium was the stadium where Bangladesh achieved its first test victoryŚwhich came against Zimbabwe in 2005.[43] This stadium now doesn't host any cricket match and focuses only on football. Another stadium of Chittagong is Chittagong Divisional Stadium, currently known as Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, which was awarded the test status in 2006, now hosts both domestic and international cricket matches .[44] Other stadiums include Women's Complex Ground. One of the major sporting club, Mohammedan Sporting Club is based in Chittagong. Another famous sporting club Abahani Sporting Club is also located here. Bangladesh won the first international gold medal from Commonwealth Games in 1990 in shooting. Mr. Ateequr Rahman, the shooter of Metropolitan shooting club, Chittagong clinch the medal.

Source : Wikipedia

 

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