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 West Bengal


Calcutta Sunderbans Jaldapara Sanctuary Bakkhali Shantiniketan
Vishnupur Darjeeling Plassey Kurseong Kalimpong
Durgapur Buxa Tiger Reserve

West Bengal stretches from the Himalayan to the Bay of Bengal. Before the partition of the sub continent, the province of Bengal includes what is now Bengla Desh. Early mention of Bengal can be traced in the Mhabharata and in Ptolemy's geography.

From the end of the 19th century onwards Bengal was one of the most prosperous territories of the British Empire. Temples were built, the Begali lanuage was enriched by poets and writers such as Bankim Chandera Chaterjee and Robindernath Tagore.

The Attempted partition of Bengal in 1904 by Lord Curzon in to a Hindu west and a Muslim east, and the removal of the capital to New Delhi inflamed nationalist feelings.

West Bengal with its many spots of scenic and historical splendor, lush green forests, snow clad mountains beautiful beaches and Calcutta, the fascinating, effervescent and bewildering metropolis of India can be attractive tourist destination. 

General Information 

Population

80, 221, 171

Area

88,752 Sq. Km

Capital

Calcutta

Languages Spoken

Bengali

District

18

People Per Sq. km

904

Literacy

69.22%

Best Season

October to March

Fairs and Festivals

Gangasagar Mela (District South 24 Parganas)
The largest fair of the State, Gangasagar Mela is a three-day event held in mid-January, on the occasion of Makar Sankranti, at Sagar Dwip. Lakhs of pilgrims come for a holy dip at the confluence of the Ganga and the Bay of Bengal. 

Kenduli Mela (District Birbhum)
On this occasion of Makar Sankranti (mid-January) another fair is held at Kenduli in the district of Birbhum. The Mela draws the largest number of Bauls, the wandering minstrels of Bengal. 

Jalpesh Mela (District Jalpaiguri)  
On the occasion of Sivaratri (February Ė March), a month-long fair is held at Jalpesh near Mainaguri in the district of Jalpaiguri. The fair centers round the age-old Siva temple dedicated to Lord Jalpeswara.
 

Naba Barsho (Throughout West Bengal)
The Bengali year starts from the first Baisakh (mid-April). It is an occasion for celebration to the Bengalees in general and tradesmen in particular. New clothes, fresh flowers, offerings at temples, people visiting decorated shops mark the day.

Rathayatra (District Hooghly)
Rathayatra (June-July) at Mahesh near Serampore is a weeklong festival. People throng to have a share in pulling the long ropes attached to the chariots of Lord Jagannath, Balaram and Subhadra on the journey from the temple and back.

Jhapan (District Bankura)
All over the Western part of the state, a festival is held in the honor of the serpent-deity Manasa on the last day of the Bengali month Sravana (mid-August). But the most spectacular is the one held at Vishnupur in the district of Bankura, with its shows of live snakes on open platforms.

Durga Puja (Throughout West Bengal)
This is the largest Bengali festival, held in the Bengali month of Aswin (October). Images of the ten-armed goddess are worshipped in ancient houses and at pandals, erected specially for the Puja. After the four-day ceremony, the images are immersed in the river. Durgapuja is the most important festival in the city of Calcutta.

Rash Mela (District Cooch Behar)
On the occasion of Rash Yatra (November), a fair is held at Cooch Behar in North Bengal. The month-long fair is one of the most important fairs in the area.

Jagaddhatri Puja (District Hooghly)
Goddess Jagaddhatri is worshipped in the Bengali month of Kartick (November). At Chandannagar near Calcutta images of the goddess are tall, pandals spectacular and the illumination unique. In fact, the illumination part is the most attractive feature here.

 Art and Handicraft

Leather Craft
A fine example of contemporary art and craft, the Bengal leather crafts owe their widespread popularity and development due to some innovative work done by gifted artists at Santiniketan.

 Brass & Bell Metal  
Copper, one of the earliest known metals was transformed into alloys like bronze, brass and bell metal by Indian metallurgists of Harappan times. Archaeological evidence indicates that Bengalís metallurgists too were practicing the art and science of metalworkings as early as 2nd millennium B.C. 

Cane & Bamboo
From the depths of time and the earliest chapters of civilization, comes a craft that endures. Bengalís very own tradition in creating everyday and fancy articles from bamboo and cane, is rich and varied.

 Clay Dolls
Clay fantasies of real-life stylized, sometimes even graphic in their representations, mark traditional Indian clay dolls and toys. But the dolls and figurines of Krishnanagar in Bengal, are unique in their realism and the quality of their finish. Patronized by Maharaja Krishnachandra himself in the late 18th century, they truly represent a breakaway from the traditional form


NORTHERN STATES- Delhi -|- Hariyana  -|- Himachal -|- Jammu- Kashmir -|- Punjab  -|- 
Uttar Pradesh
-|- Uttranchal 
SOUTHERN STATES - Andaman & Nikkobar  -|- Karnataka -|- Kerala -|- Lakshdweep
Pondicherry 
-|-  Tamilnadu -|-  Andhra Pradesh
WESTERN STATES - Daman and Diu -|- Goa  -|- Gujrat  -|- Rajasthan  -|- Maharastra 
EASTERN STATES - Arunachal -|- Assam -|-  Manipur -|- Meghalaya -|- 
Mizoram
-|- Nagaland  -|- Orissa  -|- Sikkim -|- Tripura -|- West Bengal  -|- Bihar -|- Jharkhand
CENTRAL STATES- Madhya Pradesh -|-   Chattisgarh
 

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