Bardhaman was a district capital of British India. At that time the Barddhaman city was popularly called as Burdwan. The history of Burdwan is known from about 5000 BC and belonging to the Mesolithic or Late Stone Age. The origin of the name trace back to the 6thcentury BC and is ascribed to 24thJain monk Tirthankar Mahavir Bardhaman (599-527 BC), who spent some time in Astikagrama, according to the Jain scripture of Kalpasutra. In his honour the place was renamed as Vardhamana. On the other hand, archaeological excavations at Pandu Rajar Dhibi and Birbhanpur has proved the settlements in the places of Ajay and Damodar during the Mesolithic age almost around 5,000 BC. Legends believe that around 700 BC in ancient times the area was popularly known as Bardhaman bhukti, a part of the Rarh region. At that time, it was one of the sixteen janapad of the ancient India. Moreover, numerous powerful empires such as the Magadhas, Mauryas, Kushanas and Guptas ruled over the area and beyond it. In the 7th century AD, the area was occupied by the Gauda Kingdom.Then it was ruled by Shashanka Palas, Senas and Bakhtiyar Khilji captured it in 1199 AD. During the Mughal period Bardhaman was recognized as a mahal or pargana of Sarcar Sharifabad. Some western parts of Bardhaman like Gopbhum was captured by the Sadgope kings for many years. Mughal also ruled this place for a significant period of time and the chapter of Mughal rule in this region is an interesting chapter of its history. After the victory of the British in the Battle of Plassey in the year 1757, the fertile district of Bardhaman, along with Medinipur and Chittagong was ceded to the East India Company. Lastly in 1857, the administration of the country was handed over to the British Crown from the East India Company.
Kazi Nazrul Islam, the famous national poet ofBangladesh was born on 24th May, 1899 at Churulia village near Asansol in theBurdwan District ofBengal Presidency (now in West Bengal). He was also a Bengalipolymath,poet writer musician andrevolutionary and popularly known as Nazrul. He was honoured by some great awards like wiseIndependence Day Award (1977), Ekushey Padak and Padma Bhushan (India).
Geographically, the district lies at 23°24'N latitude, 87°86'E longitude and 40 m Altitude. In the year 2019, there was a total 4.83% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 7,024sq km. and it is bounded by Birbhum and Murshidabad districts on the north, Nadia District on the east, Hooghly District on the southeast, Bankura and Purulia districts on the southwest, and Dhanbad districtofJharkhand on the northwest. The chief rivers are the Damodar and the Banka. Average temperature during the summer season is 30c while at the cold season is 20c. most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 1184.0 mm in the year of 2019-2020.
Administrative wise, the district is divided into 6 sub-division namely Asansol, Durgapur, Kalna, Katwa, Bardhaman Sadar North and Bardhaman Sadar South. Bardhaman is the district headquarters. Moreover, the district comprises 96 towns and 2,502 villages. The administrative language in the district is Bangla.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 77,17,563 including 39,66,889 are males and 37,50,674 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 945 females for every 1000 males. During the year 2001-11 the population growth of the district was 11.92% out of which10.55% were males and 13.41% were females. As per 2011 census the major religions of the district are Hindu and Muslim with 77.85% and 20.73% of the total population. According to 2011 census the principal languages in the district are Bengali and Hindi with 79.92% and 11.46%. The population density in the district is 1,099 (persons per sq. km.). In the year 2018 the number of live births in the district was 1,17,002 out of which 59,984 were males and 57,018 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 35,268 out of which 21,284 were males and 13,984 were females.
Bardhaman district is fortunate in both agriculture & industry. Rice produced in the district is exported to the different districts within the state & even in the neighbouring states. The NCGC (National Co-operative Government Corporation) is trying to promote the standard of the horticulture by developing the post harvest infrastructure like cold storage, food processing, packaging and marketing which contribute a significant part to the economy of the district. Durgapur & Asansol are the well-known industrial areas of the district. In the year 2013-14the gross domestic product of the district was Rs. 75,70,651 lakh at Current Price and Rs. 38,92,307 lakh at Constant Prices in the year 2004-2005. The Net Domestic Product in the district during the period 2013-14 was Rs. 66,33,246 lakh at Current Price and Rs. 33,02,859 lakh at Constant Prices in the year 2004-2005. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, At Factor Cost in the district during the period 2013-14 was Rs. 81,607 at Current Price and Rs. 40,634 at Constant Prices in the year 2004-2005.
TheUniversity of Burdwan was formally inaugurated on 15th June, 1960 by Sukumar Sen, an ICS, as its first Vice-chancellor. As per 2011census the literacy rate of the district is 76.21% including 82.42% are males and 69.63% are females. The total number of literates in the district is 52,47,208 including 29,18,040 are males and 23,29,168 are females.
Saifuddin Choudhury, an illustrious Indian politician who was a CPI (M) leader and MP fromWest Bengal state ofIndia. He was born 1st August, 1952 in the district. He was elected to the Lok Sabha on the CPI (M) tickets fromKatwa (Lok Sabha constituency) in 1980, 1984, 1989 and 1991.Moloy Ghatak is a prominentIndianpolitician and the present Minister of Labour and ESI Department in the Government of West Bengal. He was born at Ukhra in the Barddhaman district. He is the member of All India Trinamool Congress (political party).
The historical monuments, temples and gardens of the district allure numerous travellers every year. TheShrine of Sarvamangala, believe to contain the remnant of Sati's body, the umbilicus, is situated here. Apart from this, there are quite a number of temples and Sivalingams. During the British period the Curzon Gate of the district was built in honour of the visit ofLord Curzon. Golap Bag or the Garden of Rose, of Barddhaman is the botanical and zoological garden established by the King Bijoy Chand Mahatab in 1884. Meghnad Saha planetarium of Bardhaman was named after India's scientist Meghnad Saha. It is the second planetarium of the state after Kolkata's "Birla planetarium". Ramana Bagan is the forest office of Barddhaman sub-division. It is situated at east side of Golapbag. This forest is declared as sanctuary.This is also called as deer park. Science Centre is a well-known science museum of the district, situated at Golapbag Road near Burdwan University. The Tomb of Sher Afghan, the last of the Afghan jagirdars in Barddhaman, is located at Pir Beharam near Rajbati (Bardhaman Royal Palace). Konkaleswari Kali Mandir is situated in the ashram of KanchanNagar. The idol of goddess Kali of the temple is made of stone and the temple is 200 years old.