- Conventional long form: People's Republic of Bangladesh
- Conventional short form: Bangladesh
- Local long form: Gana Prajatantri Banladesh
- Local short form: Banladesh
- Former: East Bengal, East Pakistan
Currency: Bangladeshi taka
Population: 154.7 million (2012) World Bank
National anthem: Amar Sonar Bangla
Official language: Bengali Language
- “Bangladesh” literally translates to “Country of Bengal” in Bengali.
- The present day Bangladesh was once part of the state of Bengal in India.
- Bangladesh consists primarily of East Bengal and the Sylhet district of Assam.
- In the 1000 century BC, the region was part of the Vanga (also called Banga) kingdom.
- It was mainly dominated by the Buddhists.
- By 10th century, Hinduism had gained popularity in the region.
- When Bengal became part of the Mogul Empire in 1576, most Bengalis converted to Islam.
- The British ruled India from 1757 to 1947.
- During the partition of India, the Muslim population migrated to the regions which are now known as Pakistan and Bangladesh (formerly known as East and West Pakistan).
- For 25 years after independence, Bangladesh was considered as an extended part of Pakistan.
- Islam was the dominant religion in both countries.
- Due to the geographical distance, there were significant differences in culture, ethnicity and economy.
- In 1949, Bengali nationalist Sheik Mujibur Rahman led the Awami League to seek independence from West Pakistan.
- Although 56% of the population resided in East Pakistan, the West dominated the economy and politics.
- In 1970, East Pakistanis secured a majority of the seats in the national assembly.
- East Pakistan seceded and the independent state of Bangladesh was proclaimed on March 26, 1971.
- This led to a civil war broke out which was mediated by the Indian troops.
- East Pakistan defeated West Pakistan on Dec. 16, 1971.
- The war led to a large number of causalities and many people fled to India as refugees.
- Violence erupted when President Ahmed took over as the head of a caretaker administration in Oct. 2006.
- An alliance of parties decided to boycott the Jan. 2007 elections on grounds of corruption.
- An emergency was declared in January 2007 and elections were postponed.
- Fakhruddin Ahmed became the interim head of the government.
- The government intensified its anti-corruption drive, in 2008 June.
- Bangladesh is the seventh most populous country in the world.
- It is ranked amongst the highest in terms of population density.
- 60% of the population falls within the 0-25 age group.
- Bengali people form the ethnic majority (98%) in Bangladesh.
- Minorities comprise of Bihari migrants and native tribal groups.
- The main tribal groups are: the Chakmas, the Santhals, the Garos (Achiks), Kaibartta, Mundas, Oraons, and Zomi.
- Bangla or Bengali is the official and most widely spoken language.
- Bengali belongs to the Indo-Aryan group of languages and has its origins in Sanskrit.
- Bengali also has its own distinct script.
- Water borne diseases and health problems are common in the country.
Government and Politics
- Bangladesh is run by a parliamentary democratic government.
- The country is divided into six administrative divisions namely:
- Independence Day (26 March) and Victory Day (16 December) are observed as national holidays.
- The Constitution was founded on 4 November 1972 and brought into effect on 16 December 1972.
- It was suspended following a coup on 24 March 1982 and restored on 10 November 1986.
- The legal system is based on English common law.
- Bangladesh has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction.
- President Iajuddin Ahmed is the chief of state since 6 September 2002.
- The country is currently under a caretaker government until a general election is held.
- The Chief Caretaker Advisor, Fakhruddin Ahmed is roughly equivalent to a prime minister.
The president is elected by National Parliament for a five-year term.
- The leader of the party that wins the most seats in a legislative election is usually appointed prime minister by the president.
- The legislative branch is represented by a unicameral National Parliament or Jatiya Sangsad.
- The National Parliament consists of 300 seats and members are elected by popular vote from single territorial constituencies to serve five year terms.
- The judicial branch is represented by the Supreme Court.
- The chief justices and other judges are appointed by the president.
Airports in Bangladesh
- Bangladeshi culture is a blend of old and new elements.
- Bengali language has a rich literary history especially in terms of religious texts.
- The earliest literary text in Bangla can be found in the “Charyapada” which dates back to the eighth century.
- Bangla literature was the most productive during the nineteenth century.
- Bangladesh also has a rich collection of folk literature which includes Maimansingha Gitika, Thakurmar Jhuli or stories related to Gopal Bhar.
- The music is primarily lyric based (Baniprodhan) with minimal instrumental accompaniment.
- The Baul tradition is a unique heritage of Bangla folk music.
- Other traditional musical forms Gombhira, Bhatiali and Bhawaiya .
- Ektara, a one-stringed musical instrument is an important component of folk music.
- Other musical instruments are dotara, dhol, flute, and tabla.
- Bangladesh also has an active heritage in North Indian classical music.
- The dance forms are a blend of tribal forms as well as classical Indian dance traditions.
- The Bangladeshi film industry is also quite active.
- The cuisine is similar to Indian and Middle Eastern styles but has a few unique components.
- Rice with curry and sweetmeats like Rôshogolla, Chômchôm and Kalojam are popular.
- Women mostly wear sari or salwar kameez while most men dress up in western attire.
- The kurta-paejama and lungi are also worn by men on some occasions.
- Eids, Eid ul-Fitr and Eid ul-Adha are the largest festivals in the Islamic calendar.
- The most important secular festival in Bangladesh is the “Pohela Baishakh” or Bengali New Year.
- Bangladesh is one of the most poor, over-populated and inefficiently governed nations.
- Most of the economy is dependant on the service sector and the agricultural sector.
- Rice is the most important agricultural product.
- Garment exports and remittances from Bangladeshis working overseas also contribute to the economic growth.
- The GDP (purchasing power parity): as calculated in 2007 was $206.7 billion.
- 45% of the population is below poverty line.
Agricultural products include rice, jute, tea, wheat, sugarcane, potatoes, tobacco, pulses, oilseeds, spices, fruit; beef, milk and poultry.
- The main industries are cotton textiles, jute, garments, tea processing, paper newsprint, cement, chemical fertilizer, light engineering and sugar.
- Export commodities include garments, jute and jute goods, leather, frozen fish and seafood.
- Import commodities include machinery and equipment, chemicals, iron and steel, textiles, foodstuffs, petroleum products and cement.
- Telecommunication in Bangladesh is insufficiently developed and limited.
- There is less than one line per 100 people.
- Mobile cellular services are comparatively better with 13 connections per 100 people.
- There are 30 radio broadcast stations and 15 television broadcast stations.
- Internet facilities are also limited.
- Bangladesh has 16 airports of which 15 have paved runways.
- The railways spread over a distance of 2,768 km.
- Roadways span over 239,226 km.
- The merchant marines are equipped with 41 ships.
- Major ports and terminals are located at Chittagong and Mongla Port.
- Bangladesh education system is three-tiered and highly subsidized by the government.
- Education is largely funded by the government at primary, secondary and higher secondary levels.
- It also partially subsidizes the funding for many private schools.
- The government operates more than 15 state universities through the University Grants Commission.
- In the past, education in Bangladesh was primarily delivered in English and was a domain of the upper-class.
- Now, efforts are being made to make education accessible to all sections of the society.
- Bangladesh fully conforms to the Education For All (EFA) objectives, the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) and international declarations.
- Education is free for children upto the age of 10.
Bangladesh is surrounded by:
- India (north, east, west)
- Burma (southeast)
- Bay of Bengal (south)
- Bangladesh is located in Southern Asia between Burma and India.
- Its geographical co-ordinates are 24 00 N, 90 00 E.
- The total area of the country is 144,000 sq km.
- The coastline is 580 km long.
- The climate is mostly tropical with mild winter and hot and humid summer.
- Monsoons are heavy, warm and humid.
- The terrain mostly constitutes of flat alluvial plains and hills in the southeast.
- The highest point is Keokradong standing at 1,230 m.
- Natural resources include natural gas, arable land, timber and coal.
- 55.39% of the land is arable.
- Droughts, cyclones and monsoon floods are a few natural hazards that afflict the country.
- Most of the country is situated on a delta formed by large rivers flowing from the Himalayas.
- East Pakistan gained independence from West Pakistan on 26 March 1971.
- The state of Bangladesh was officially created on 16 December 1971.
- Rabindranath Tagore (poet)
- Kazi Nazrul Islam (poet)
- Taslima Nasreen (writer)
- Mohammed Yunus (Social worker, Founder of Gramin Bank micro credit card, Nobel Laureate)
- Nakshikatha is a traditional stitching pattern of Bangladesh.
- The country is also rich in natural beauty.
- According to a 2008 census, the total population was estimated to be 153,546,901.
- The annual population growth rate is 2.022% (2008 est.)
- Birth rate: 28.86 births/1,000 population (2008 est.)
- Death rate: 8 deaths/1,000 population (2008 est.)
Bangladesh Related Topics:
Bangladesh Tourist Attractions:
- Lalbagh Fort
- Sixty Dome Mosque
- Ahsan Manzil
- Liberation War Museum
- Bangladesh National Museum
- Dhaka Zoo
- Jatiyo Sangsad Bhaban
- New Market