Dhaka is the capital and the largest city of Bangladesh. The name of the city was spelled as Dacca, which was used until the current spelling was adopted in 1983 to match with Bengali pronunciation. it lies along the east bank of the Buriganga River in the heart of the Bengal delta. The city is the heart of the entire country, with diverse religious and ethnic communities. Dhaka is the economic, cultural and political center of Bangladesh. It is a major financial center of South Asia. It is one of the world’s most populated cities with a population of 18.89 million people in the Greater Dhaka Area. Dhaka is also the 4th most densely populated city in the world.At the height of its ancient glory, Dhaka was regarded as one of the wealthiest and most prosperous cities in the world. It was the capital of the Bengal province of the Mughal Empire twice (1608–39 and 1660–1704). The city’s name was Jahangir Nagar (City of Jahangir) in the 17th century. It was the heart to the economy of Mughal Bengal, which generated 50% of Mughal GDP. Dhaka was a commercial center and the hub of the worldwide muslin and silk trade.The Mughals amazingly decorated the city with well-laid out gardens, tombs, mosques, palaces and forts. Dhaka came to known as the City of Mosques in Bengal. It was also described as the Venice of the East and the city was home to various Eurasian merchant groups. The city hosted two important caravansaries of the subcontinent: the Bara Katra and Choto Katra. Modern Dhaka started to develop from the late 20th century. Between 1905 and 1912, it was the capital of British Eastern Bengal and Assam. after ending of British rule, it became the administrative capital of the East Pakistan. It was declared as the legislative capital of Pakistan in 1962and in 1971, it became the capital of the independent Bangladesh. The city is known as the Rickshaw Capital of the World as it has the largest number of Rickshaws. Dhaka stock exchange is one of the largest in south Asia.
The origin of the name of the Dhaka is unknown. It is said that the name may have originated from the dhak trees as they were very common in the area and alternatively, this name may refer to the hidden goddess Dhakeshwari, whose temple is located in the south-western part of the city. Another popular theory states that Dhaka refers to a musical instrument, dhak which was played by order of Subahdar Islam Khan. The administrative Dhaka District was first established in 1772. But, the existence of the area dates from the 7th century. The present day Savar was the capital of the Sanbagh Kingdom during seventh and eighth century. The city area was ruled by the Buddhist kingdom of Kamarupa and the Pala Empire before the reign of Hindu Sena dynasty in the 9th century. The town consisted of a few market centers like Lakshmi Bazar, Shankhari Bazar, Tanti Bazar, Patuatuli, Kumartuli, Bania Nagar and Goal Nagar. Dhaka was later successively ruled by the Turkish and Afghan governors. The development of townships and a significant growth in population came as the city was proclaimed the capital of Bengal under Mughal rule in 1608. During Mughal rule Dhaka was famous for its textile products especially the Muslin. Mughal subahdar Islam Khan was the first administrator of the city who named the town “Jahangir Nagar” in honour of the Mughal emperor Jahangir. The control of the city was then taken by the British Emperor in 1757.The city’s population shrank dramatically during this period as the prominence of Kolkata rose, but substantive development and modernization actually happened. A modern civic water supply system was introduced in 1874 and electricity supply launched in 1878.
After the partition of Bengal in (1947) Dhaka became the capital of East Bengal as a part of the new Muslim state of Pakistan, while western part of Bengal with a majority Hindu population had become a part of the new and independent India. As the center of regional politics, Dhaka saw an increasing number of political strikes and incidents of violence. The adoption of Urdu as the sole official language of Pakistan led to protest Known as the language movement of 1952, the protests resulted in police firing which killed students who were demonstrating peacefully.
In 1970 the Bhola cyclone devastated much of the region, killing an estimated 500,000 people. More than half the city of Dhaka was flooded and millions of people marooned. Bengali politician Sheikh Mujibur Rahman held a nationalist rally on 7 March 1971 at the Race Course Ground An estimated one million people attended the gathering, leading to the 26 March declaration of Bangladesh’s independence by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. In 25 march of 1971 the Pakistan Army launched Operation Searchlight, which led to the arrests, torture and killing of hundreds of thousands of people, mainly Hindus and Bengali intellectuals. After the independence from Pakistan surrendering with more than 940000 soldiers Dhaka had seen a rapid and massive growth of the city population attracting migrant workers from rural areas across Bangladesh.Dhaka is the commercial heart of Bangladesh it has a large middle class population, increasing the market for modern consumer and luxury goods. Many skilled workers are employed in the Dhaka metropolitan area. The city has a large number of migrant workers working in many professions like Hawkers, peddlers, small shops, rickshaws transport, roadside vendors and stalls. The population of rickshaw drivers is 400,000. Half the workforce is employed in household and unorganizedlabor and about 800,000 works in the textile industry.The main commercialareas of the city include Motijheel, Panthapath and Gulshan. Bashundhara City is a recently developed economic area and Bashundhara City is one of the largest shopping malls in south Asia. Industrial belts within the Dhaka city are a major manufacturing hub, bounded by the Buriganga, Meghna, Dhaleshwari, Balu and Turag Rivers. Restaurants, shopping malls and luxury hotels serve the city’s economy. The city has historically attracted numerous migrant workers.
The city of Dhaka was the city of the Mughals, whose governors built several palace and mosques. Dhaka’s finest specimen of this time is Lalbagh Fort, incomplete but well worth for visit. Other spectacular and historical places are Ahsan Manzil Plance Museum, the Bara Katra, the Cotta Katra and several mosques of note.The Botanical garden is a park at Mirpur in Dhaka containing various species of plants.
Dhaka has the largest number of educational institutions. Most popular and historical institutions are including Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU), Jagannath University and Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University. Dhaka Medical College and Sir Salimullah Medical College are two of the best medical colleges in the nation. Dhaka has is known for the worst traffic jams in Bangladesh and all over the world.
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