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05:23, Monday, October 21, 2019 (UTC) • 11:23, Monday October 21, 2019 (BST) • Kartik 6


Bangladeshi girls celebrating Pohela Boishakh (17152686985).jpg


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Bangladesh (/ˌbæŋɡləˈdɛʃ, ˌbɑːŋ-/; Bengali: বাংলাদেশ Bangladesh [ˈbaŋladeʃ] (About this soundlisten), lit. "The country of Bengal"), officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh (গণপ্রজাতন্ত্রী বাংলাদেশ Gônoprojatontri Bangladesh), is a country in South Asia. While the country is the 92nd-largest in land area, spanning 147,570 square kilometres (56,980 sq mi), it is the world's 8th-most populous with nearly 163 million people, making it one of the most densely populated countries in the world. Bangladesh shares land borders with India to the west, north, and east, and with Myanmar to the east, with the Bay of Bengal to the south. Dhaka, the capital and largest city, is the nation's economic, political and cultural hub. Chittagong, the largest sea port, is the second largest city. The dominant geographic feature is the Ganges delta, which empties into the Bay of Bengal the combined waters of several river systems, including the Brahmaputra and the Ganges, with numerous criss-crossing rivers and inland waterways. Highlands with evergreen forests cover the northeastern and southeastern regions. The seacoast features the longest natural sea beach and most of the world's largest mangrove forest. The country's biodiversity includes a vast array of plants and wildlife, including the endangered Bengal tiger, the national animal.

Bangladesh forms the largest and eastern part of the Bengal region. According to the ancient Indian epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata, the Vanga Kingdom, one of the namesakes of the Bengal region, was a strong naval ally of the legendary Ayodhya. In the ancient and classical period of the Indian subcontinent, the territory was home to many principalities, including the Pundra, Gangaridai, Gauda, Samatata and Harikela. It was also a Mauryan province under the reign of Ashoka. The principalities were notable for their overseas trade, contacts with the Roman world, export of fine muslin and silk to the Middle East, and spreading of philosophy and art to Southeast Asia. The Pala Empire, the Chandra dynasty, and the Sena dynasty were the last pre-Islamic Bengali middle kingdoms. Islam was introduced during the Pala Empire, through trade with the Abbasid Caliphate, but following the early conquest of Bakhtiyar Khalji and the subsequent establishment of the Delhi Sultanate and preaching of Shah Jalal in East Bengal, the faith fully spread across the region. In 1576, the area was absorbed into the Mughal Empire, although part was overrun by the Suri Empire. Following the decline of the Mughals in the early 1700s, Bengal became a semi-independent state under the Nawabs of Bengal, ultimately led by Siraj ud-Daulah. It was later conquered by the British East India Company at the Battle of Plassey in 1757. The borders of modern Bangladesh were established with the separation of Bengal and India in August 1947, when the region became East Pakistan as a part of the newly formed State of Pakistan, demarcated by the Boundary of the Partition of India. Later the rise of the Bengali nationalist and self-determination movement led to the Liberation War and eventually resulted in the emergence of Bangladesh as a sovereign nation in 1971.

The Bengali ethnicity, speakers of the official Bengali language, make up 98% of the population. The politically dominant Bengali Muslims make the nation the world's fourth-largest Muslim-majority country. While recognising Islam as the country's established religion, the constitution grants freedom of religion to non-Muslims. A middle power, Bangladesh is a unitary parliamentary democracy and constitutional republic in the Westminster tradition. The country is divided into eight administrative divisions and sixty-four districts. It is one of the emerging and growth-leading economies of the world, one of the Next Eleven countries, with one of the fastest real GDP growth rates in the world. Its gross domestic product ranks 39th largest in terms of market exchange rates, and 29th in purchasing power parity. Its per capita income ranks 143th nominally and 136th by purchasing power parity. In recent years Bangladesh has registered notable success in reducing child mortality, population control, combating natural disasters, women's empowerment, earning foreign exchange through the export of textiles, and using microcredit to alleviate poverty. However, the country continues to face the challenges of the Rohingya genocide and refugee crisis, terrorism, corruption, and the erratic effects of climate change.




Selected article

Aircraft.dc-10.750pix.jpg
Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Bengali: বিমান বাংলাদেশ এয়ারলাইন্স), commonly known as Biman (Bengali: বিমান), pronounced /bmɑːn/ (bee-mah-n), is the national flag carrier of Bangladesh, having its main hub at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka with its flights also operating from its secondary hubs at Shah Amanat International Airport in Chittagong as well as Osmani International Airport in Sylhet. The airline provides international passenger and cargo services to multiple destinations and has air service agreements with 42 countries. The headquarters of the airline, Balaka Bhaban, is located in Kurmitola, in the northern part of Dhaka. Annual Hajj flights; transporting tourists, migrants and non-resident Bangladeshi workers; and the activities of its subsidiaries form an integral part of the corporate business of the airline. Bangladesh's air transport sector, which is experiencing an 8% annual growth rate thanks to a large number of outbound tourists, domestic tourists and non-resident Bangladeshi travellers, is very competitive with stiff competition among a number of domestic Bangladeshi private airlines as well as Biman.

Created in February 1972, Biman enjoyed an internal monopoly in the aviation industry of Bangladesh until 1996. In the decades following its founding, the airline expanded its fleet and destinations but it was adversely affected by corruption and mismanagement. At its peak, Biman operated flights to 29 international destinations, extending from New York City in the west to Tokyo in the east. The airline was wholly owned and managed by the government of Bangladesh until 23 July 2007, when it was transformed into the country's largest public limited company by the Caretaker Government of Bangladesh. Since becoming a public limited company in 2007, the airline has reduced staff and begun to modernise its fleet. The airline had signed a deal with Boeing for ten new aircraft along with options for ten more in 2008. After getting delivery of the new planes, Biman expanded its destinations and increased in-flight amenities, especially onboard Internet and WiFi; mobile telephony; and live TV streams. Biman Bangladesh Airlines is certified as safe to fly in Europe by the European Aviation Safety Agency. In addition, Biman has also successfully passed the IATA Operational Safety Audit and since then, the airline has resumed flights to some of its previous destinations in Asia and Europe.

Bangladesh News

31 August 2019 –
India releases the final version of the National Register of Citizens for the state of Assam. Up to 1.9 million residents risk losing their citizenship if they are not on the list and can not prove their residency. The move is criticized for disproportionately affecting the local Bengali community. (BBC)
25 August 2019 – Rohingya crisis
At Kutupalong, the world's largest refugee camp, in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, 200,000 people gather peacefully to remember the day, in 2017, when a violent crackdown by Myanmarese security forces compelled 740,000 Rohingya to flee over the border. (France24)
13 July 2019 – Monsoon of South Asia
Three days of heavy rain in Nepal trigger floods and landslides resulting in at least 67 deaths. India was also affected by heavy floods, resulting in the death of 34 people, while 29 others died in Bangladesh. (BBC)
4 May 2019 – 2019 North Indian Ocean cyclone season
Cyclone Fani starts affecting Bangladesh, where over a million people have been evacuated from the storm's path. Authorities say the cyclone has killed at least five people in Bangladesh and damaged over a thousand homes. At least twelve people have been killed in total by the cyclone. (Reuters)
3 May 2019 – 2019 North Indian Ocean cyclone season
Cyclone Fani, an extremely severe category 4 storm and one of the strongest in recent years, makes landfall at the coastal town of Puri in the Indian state of Odisha. Eight people have been killed in India, according to the Press Trust of India, and hundreds more injured. Severe damage and flooding has been reported. One million Indians and 2.1 million Bangladeshis have been evacuated. A storm surge possibly up to 1.5m (5ft) is expected. The storm, weakening as it travels northeast through India, is expected to reach Chittagong in Bangladesh Saturday. (Reuters) (BBC)
28 March 2019 –
A fire breaks out in Dhaka, Bangladesh, at a 22-story tower, killing at least 25 people and injuring more than 70 others. (BBC)


Archive of old items

Where in Bangladesh...

Mosque city of Bagerhat, founded by Turkish general Ulugh Khan Jahan in the early 15th century, is one of the three UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Bangladesh. Do you know where in Bangladesh is Mosque city of Bagerhat?
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Mosque city of Bagerhat
This historic city is located at the meeting-point of the Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers in Bagerhat District, under Khulna Division in south-west Bangladesh.


Selected images

Did you know...

Ship breaking in progress at Sitakunda

  • ... that Nawab Faizunnesa was the first woman in south Asia to be awarded the title of "Nawab" by Queen Victoria, for her campaign for female education and other social issues?
  • ... that in most of the killings of the Bangladesh Drug War the victims were shot at night, and weapons and drugs were found near the bodies?


Selected biography

Shakib Al Hasan

Shakib Al Hasan (Bengali: সাকিব আল হাসান) (born 24 March 1987) is a Bangladeshi international cricketer. He is an all-rounder, batting left-handed in the middle order and bowling slow left-arm orthodox. He represented Bangladesh at under-19 level, 18 Youth One Day Internationals between 2005 and 2006. Shakib made his One Day International (ODI) debut against Zimbabwe in August 2006, and his Test debut on 18 May against India. During a match against New Zealand in 2008, Shakib took the best bowling figures by a Bangladesh player in Tests, 7 wickets for 37 runs. Until then, Shakib had been considered more of a batsman than a bowler, although still an all-rounder. From January 2009 to April 2011, Shakib was ranked first amongst ODI all-rounders by the ICC. In December 2011, he became the world's top-ranked all-rounder at both Test and ODI levels.

Shakib was appointed Bangladesh's vice-captain in June 2009 when Mashrafe Mortaza replaced Mohammad Ashraful as captain. During Bangladesh's tour of the West Indies the following month, Mortaza injured himself and Shakib took over the captaincy. He was 22 years old at the time. Initially a temporary position until Mortaza recovered, Shakib's success against the West Indies, securing his side's first overseas series win, ensured he retained the position even after Mortaza recovered. He was named The Wisden Cricketer's "Test Player of the Year" in November 2009. In July 2010, he stepped down from the ODI captaincy to concentrate on his personal performance. Mortaza took over until injury struck again and Shakib was asked to assume the role. Domestically he has represented Khulna Division since 2004, and in 2010 he spent several months playing for Worcestershire in England, becoming the first Bangladeshi player to represent an English county. For the 2011 Indian Premier League, Shakib was contracted by Kolkata Knight Riders. He was relieved from captaincy in September 2011. (more...)

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