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গাইবান্ধা (প্রাচীন নাম ভবানী গঞ্জ)
Location of Gaibandha in Bangladesh
|• Total||2,179.27 km2 (841.42 sq mi)|
|• Density||1,100/km2 (2,900/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+6 (BST)|
Gaibandha (Bengali: গাইবান্ধা জেলা, Gaibandha Jela also Gaibandha Zila) is a district in Northern Bangladesh. It is a part of the Rangpur Division. Gaibandha subdivision was established in 1875. Gaibandha was previously known as Bhabanigonj. The name was changed from Bhabanigonj to Gaibandha in 1875. Gaibandha was established as a district in 15 February 1984.
In ancient times, this area was under water which was filled by the silt of Teesta , Brahmaputra and Jamuna river over time. This statement can be found in the description of famous Chinese traveler Xuanzang and astronomical books of Ptolemy. The flood of 1787 and the earthquake of 1898 made a major change in the landscape of this area which changed the flow of Teesta river, filled up a vast 15 miles area between Ghoraghat of Dinajpur and Tulshighat of Gaibandha and created small rivers like Kartoa, Ghaghot and Katakhali.
During the regime of British empire, Governor Warren Hastings established 24 thanas under Rangpur district collectorate in 1893. According to the 1873 report of E.G Glazier, collector of Rangpur, three of the thanas was established in today's Gaibandha. Two of them, Gobindogonj and Sadullapur were established in Idrakpur pargana and the other named as Bhabaniganj was established in the Patildaho pargana.
During the Indian Rebellion of 1857, it was very difficult to stop the activities of the rebels from Rangpur. So Bhabaniganj thana was established in the bank of Bramhaputra river for administrative reason. In 27 May of 1858, Bhabaniganj was established as a mahakuma. At first there were only two thanas: Sadullapur and Bhabaniganj. Gobindonganj was included in Bogra district 13 April of 1821 but later in 12 August 1871, it was included in Bhabaniganj. Saghata, Phulchari, Palasbari and at last in 1870 Sundarganj was included in Bhabaniganj.
In 1872, river corrosion started in the eastside of Bramhaputra river. As a result, the mahakuma was moved from it's original place and re-established in Gaibandha which was 12 km away from Bhabaniganj mahakuma. The sadar area was under control of three landlords. The patiladaho paragana was under control of Tagore family who was said to be related to the Rabindranath Tagore family, the Baharbondo pargana was under landlord Manindro Nandi, ruled by Krishnanath's wife queen Shwarnamoyee of Kashim Bazar and the Muktipur pargana was under control of landlord Lahiri family of Thanshinghopur. There was a collision between the landlords regarding the establishment of the mahakuma. At last by the initiatives of government officials, the administrative building and the court were established in Baharbondo pargana which was donated by queen Shwarnamayee. when the Bhabaniganj mouza was beginning to destroy by river erosion, the name of this mahakuma was changed from Bhabanigonj to Gaibandha. In the 80's when the mahakumas were changed to districts, Gaibandha mahakuma was also established as a district.
There are two opinions about the name of Gaibandha. The most famous opinion is: around five thousand years ago, capital of Matsa Desh of King Birat was in Gobindaganj area. "Matsa" means fish and "desh" means country. Fishes were abundant in his kingdom so the term "Matsa Desh" was created. According to Mahabharata, King Birat had 60,000 cows which were frequently robbed by robbers. To protect his cattles from robbers, king Birat established a huge cattle-shed. The cattles were tied up alongside the rivers of this area. "Gai" means "cow" and "Bandha" means "to tie up". From this reason the area was called Gaibandha.
Gaibandha has a total area of 2,179.27 square kilometres (841.42 sq mi). It has boundaries with the Kurigram and Rangpur to the north, Bogra District to the south, Joypurhat District, Dinajpur and Rangpur districts to the west, and Jamalpur and Kurigram districts, and the Brahmaputra River to the east. Gaibandha has seven upazilas and 82 unions. Bhramhaputra, Tista, Kartoa and Ghaghot are notable rivers in this district. Total river area of this district is 107.71 square kilometres (41.59 sq mi). There are total five rivers in Gaibandha. The total length of the rivers is 107.71km. Bramhaputra, Teesta and Ghaghot are the main rivers. In the report Bukanon Hamilton in 1808-09, there were some forests in this area but in today's Gaibandha, there is no more any forest. 20% of the district has clay soil which can be found in the Khiar area of Gobindaganj upazila, the rest of the land has sandy and peat and loam soil. The climate of this area is extremely intriguing and rainfall is high. No mineral resources has been found yet in this district. 
The main occupations of Gaibandha district are agriculture 44.45%, agricultural laborer 27.72%, wage laborer 2.58%, transport 1.89%, commerce 9.11%, service 4.49% and others 9.76%. There are 1621 small industries, 2 medium industries and 1 large industry in Gaibandha. There are 277 poultries, 273 dairies, 245 fisheries, 5 hatcheries, 16 nurseries and 2 artificial cattle breeding centers. Total amount of lands are 217040 hectares, arable land 160,397 hectares, irritable land are139640, fallow land are 56643 hectares and total water reservoir are 5050.30 hectares; the amount of crop: single crop 20.5%, double crop 58.5% and treble crop 21%; land under irrigation 27.16%. Main crops are paddy, wheat, jute, sugarcane, potato, brinjal, mustard seed, chili, onion, garlic and vegetables. Jute is mainly produced in Gobindoganj, Palashbari and the northern side of this district.The production of aush rice and tobacco has decreased a lot in recent years but production of banana has increased significantly in Gobindoganj and Palashbari.
The total population of the district is 24,30,627. Total number of male and female is 12,30,938 and 11,99,689 respectively. There are 7 upazilas, 82 unions and 1249 villages in Gaibandha. Majority of the population are muslims. 88.21% of total population are muslim, 11.47% are hindu, 0.26% are christian and 0.06% are others.
Most people of Gaibandha speak Bengali dialects of Rangpur region. People living in the southern portion (Shaghata and Gobindaganj) have some accent of the dialects of Bogra region. A good many people of Char areas of Jamuna speak dialects of Mymensingh region.
Education rate of Gaibandha is 54%. Among educational institutions, there are 3 government colleges, 41 non-government colleges, 4 government high schools, 287 non-government high schools, 31 junior high schools, 498 madrasas, 737 government primary schools, 546 non-government primary schools, 14 kindergartens, 83 satellite schools, 32 community schools, 1 primary teacher's training institute, and 1 agriculture training institute. Well-known educational institutions of Gaibandha District are:
There is a general hospital and six government hospitals and 54 family welfare centers, 6 upazila health complex, 1 maternity and childcare center and 1 tuberculosis clinic in Gaibandha. 89% of total population get the facility of sanitation. The only government general hospital of the district is Gaibandha Sadar Hospital which is located at the Gaibandha Sadar. Khandakar general medical hospital, Pulse clinic, New modern clinic, Rabeya clinic and nursing home, Oishi clinic and S.K.S hospital are some of the non-government clinics in this district.
Total length of concrete road is 683.62 km, dirt road is 2178.73 km, HBB road is 176.05 km and the railway is 56 km. There are 14 railway stations, 1 bus station and 7 helipads in this district. There are 365 bridges and 1281 culverts in this district. There is no airport in this district.
In 1875, a company named Bengal State Railway established first railway in this area. The railway stations of Gaibandha are Bamandanga, Naldanga, Kamarpara, Kuptala, Gaibandha, Teermohoni, Balashighat railway ferry station, Badiakhali, Bonarpara junction, Mahimaganj, Bharatkhali, Phulchari and Teestamukh Ghat railway station. Kartoa express, Dolonchapa express, Lalmoni express and Rangpur express are the inter-city trains and Uttarbanga mail, Bogra express, Padmarag express and Ramsagar express are mail trains.
Major inter-division bus travels are Alhamra travels, Hanif travels, Shyamoly travels, Orin travels, S.R. travels etc.
Gaibandha District is divided into 7 upazilas/thanas, which are further divided into 82 union parishads, and 1244 villages. The upazilas/thanas of the district are:
|upazila||No. of unions||population (2011)|
|Gaibandha Sadar Upazila||13||437268|
|Gaibandha-1||Shamim Haider Patwary||Bangladesh Awami League|
|Gaibandha-2||Mahabub Ara Begum Gini||Bangladesh Awami League|
|Gaibandha-4||Md. Monowar Hossain Choudhuri||Bangladesh Awami League|
|Gaibandha-5||Fazle Rabbi Miah||Bangladesh Awami League|
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