Tagore, Kabi Guru Rabindranath (1st Nobel Laureate of Asia)

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  History of Bengal

Rash B. Ghosh, Ph.D (Founder IIBB)  
(510) 870-4988 (510) 575-5112  

IIBengalBasin@gmail.com & usak2@yahoo.com  




The Bengal Basin

The Bengal Basin, consisting of Bangladesh (East Bengal) and the eastern part of India (West Bengal) has unique geographic features. It has one of the world’s largest flat alluvial deltaic plains where three big rivers — the Ganges, the Brahmaputra, and the Meghna (BGM) flow. Due to these geographic characteristics and the tropical monsoon, the Bengal Basin is vulnerable to various water problems. During the monsoon, the Bengal Basin experience wide spread flooding, but lacks drinking water in the dry months because of drought.

 

Western Part of Bengal Basin belongs to West Bengal, India

 

Easter Part of Bengal Basin belongs to Bangladesh

 

 


View the index page


History of Bengal



History of Bengal

Early evidence suggests that Mongols and, soon after, Aryans from Central Asia settled in the area in the fifth and sixth centuries BC. Portuguese traders and missionaries were the first Europeans to reach the area, which was then known as Bengal, in the latter part of the 15th century, followed by the Dutch and the French. The British East India Company, which, by the end of the 17th century, had established a strong presence on the Indian subcontinent centered in Calcutta, extended its commercial contracts and administrative control to Bengal during the 18th and 19th centuries. In 1857, the British established Bengal as a region of India.

 

Bengal was probably the richest place on the Earth only 400 years ago, where many outstanding world-class scholars, poets, writers, scientists, philosophers, spiritual leaders, artists, and social reformers were born. These include: Rabindranath Tagore, Subhash Chandra Bose, SK Mujjibur Rahman, Raja Rammohan Roy, Shree Ramakrishna, Swami Vivekananda, Aurobindo Ghosh, Iswarchandra Vidyasagar, Madhusudan Dutta, Meghnad Saha, Najrul Islam, Santidev Ghosh, Saratchandra Chattopadhyay, Satyen Bose, Sayed Nazrul Islam, Maharaja T.N Chakroborty, Amartya Sen, Bankimchandra Chattopadhyay, Satyajit Ray etc




Milestones in the History of Bangladesh



Milestones in the History of Bangladesh

 

The modern history of Bangladesh actually began in 1947 when Pakistan was partitioned from British India. Created along religious lines, Pakistan was a country divided into a western and an eastern wing separated by over 1,600 kilometers of Indian territory.

  • 1949
    The Awami League (AL) forms, calling for an indepenent East Pakistan.
  • 1970
    The AL wins all but two of the 160 East Pakistani seats in national elections in 1970. Talks between East and West Pakistan about the formation of a national government headed by the Al are unsuccessful.
  • 1971
    Failure to reach a political compromise leads to strikes and protests in Dhaka. The AL is banned and its leader and founder, Sheikh Mujibur (Mujib) Rahman, is arrested by the military and taken to West Pakistan. Bengali nationalists declare an independent People's Republic of Bangladesh. Civil war follows; an estimated 10 million Bengali Hindu seek refuge in India. India intervenes on the side of the Bengal nationalists. Pakistani government forces surrender in December and Bangladesh, meaning 'Bengal nation', is created.
  • 1973
    The country's first national election is held. The AL, led by Sheikh Mujib, win almost all of the 300 seats.
  • 1975
    In August, Sheikh Mujib is assassinated in a military coup. After two subsequent coups, Major-General Ziaur Rahman (General Zia) assumes power.
  • 1978
    General Zia wins the country's first direct presidential election and a year later his Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) wins 49% of the total votes and 207 of the 300 directly elected seats in parliamentary elections.
  • 1981
    General Zia is assassinated. Vice-president, Justice Abdus Sattar, later assumes the role of President.
  • 1982
    A bloodless coup is staged by the army chief Hossain Mohammed Ershad.
  • 1991
    The BNP is elected.
  • 1996
    The main opposition parties boycott the general election in February and refuse to recognise the victory by Zia and the BNP. Subsequent elections in June result in the AL - led by Sheikh Hasina Wajed, the daughter of Sheikh Mujib Rahman - winning 146 seats compared with the BNP's 116. Former chief justice Shahabuddin Ahmed is installed by the AL as President in October.
  • 1999
    Prof. Amartya Sen, a native of the Bengal becomes the first Asian to receive the Nobel Prize in Economics.



Climate in Bangladesh



Climate of Bangladesh

 

The climate of Bangladesh is subtropical monsoonal, characterised by heavy seasonal rainfall, moderately warm temperatures and high humidity. Three seasons are prominent: winter (November to February), summer (March to June), and monsoon (July to October). The most comfortable season is winter, when temperatures range from lows of 13C to highs of 30C. 

 

The country's average annual rainfall varies from 1,430 millimetres to 4,300 millimetres. Maximum precipitation occurs in the coastal areas of Chittagong and the northern part of the Sylhet region, with the minimum amount of rainfall in the western and northern parts of the country. The average annual rainfall in the capital is 1,880 millimetres.




Government



Government

Bangladesh has a modified parliamentary form of government. Since 1991, the role of the President, who is elected for a five-year term by parliament, has been reduced to a titular head of state. However, under constitutional amendments passed in March 1996, presidential powers may be substantially expanded during the tenure of a caretaker government, which assumes temporary power to oversee general elections after the dissolution of parliament. The President is also Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.

Legislative power is exercised by the unicameral parliament of Jatiya Sangsad, which is led by the prime minister, who is usually the leader of the ruling party. The legislature is comprised of 330 members: 300 are directly elected and 30 positions are reserved for women appointed by the other members. Members serve five-year terms and are elected by universal suffrage. In national elections held in June 1996, the Awami League won a majority.

The country is divided into six political divisions: Dhaka, Chittagong, Rajshahi, Barisal, Sylhet and Khulna. The divisions are further subdivided into districts. thanas and villages.

Bangladesh's judiciary is a civil court system based on the British model; the highest court of appeal is the appellate division of the Supreme Court.




Language



Language

Bengali (Bangla) is the state language of Bangladesh and the mother  tongue of about 95% of the population; the remaining 5% use various tribal dialects. English is also spoken widely and understood within the business community.

Bangla Language Monument

 














Welcome to Bengal Basin  |  Deceased Irish Citizens  |  Upcoming Events August 2015  |  Upcoming Events July 2013  |  Donation to IIBB  |  4 Scientists  |  Join IIBB/Member Benefits  |  Arsenic Contamination in the Bengal Basin  |  Frequently Asked Questions  |  History of Bengal  |  Historic Figures of Bengal  |  Language Day  |  News Articles  |  News Articles  |  International Symposia Series on Toxic Contamination  |  Human Rights Symposia Series  |  Raja Ram Mohan Roy: Father of Modern India - Symposia Series  |  Recent Event-8th International Symposium in Bangladesh: Background, Registration, and Fees  |  Upcoming Events  |  Visva Bharati University  |  Message Center  |  Discussion Groups  |  Maps/Photos  |  Links  |  Contact us  |  Stand Against Injustice  |  Sheik Majibur Rahman  |  Founder and Institute Fight to Save Property  |  About the Institute  |  ghosh



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