Community development block
|District||South 24 Parganas|
|• Total||63.08 km2 (24.36 sq mi)|
|Elevation||9 m (30 ft)|
|• Density||2,800/km2 (7,200/sq mi)|
|• Official||Bengali, English|
|Time zone||UTC+5.30 (IST)|
|Telephone code||+91 33|
|Vehicle registration||WB-01 to WB-10, WB-19 to WB-22, WB-95 to WB-99|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Diamond Harbour|
|Vidhan Sabha constituency||Bishnupur (SC)|
During the Bengal Famine of 1943, the Communist Party of India provided relief to the peasantry of the Sundarbans area. In September 1946 Bangiya Pradeshik Kisan Sabha decided to launch the Tebhaga movement. The peasant movement broke out in Kakdwip, Sonarpur, Bhangar and Canning. Kakdwip and Namkhana were the storm centres of the movement. The movement aimed at improving the share of the peasant engaged as sharecroppers. The prominent leaders of the movement were: Kansari Halder, Ashoke Bose and Rash Behari Ghosh. Peasant leaders like Gajen Malik, Manik Hazra, Jatin Maity, Bijoy Mondal and others rose to prominence. The movement continued till 1950, when the Bargadari Act was enacted. The Act recognised the right of the sharecropper to two-thirds of the produce when he provided the inputs.
During 1946-1950 the Tebhaga movement in several parts of the 24 Parganas district led to the enactment of the Bargadari Act. Although the Bargadari Act of 1950 recognised the rights of bargadars to a higher share of crops from the land that they tilled, it was not implemented. Large tracts, beyond the prescribed limit of land ceiling, remained with the rich landlords. In 1967, West Bengal witnessed peasant uprising, against non-implementation of land reforms legislation, starting from Kheadaha gram panchayat in Sonarpur CD block. From 1977 onwards major land reforms took place in West Bengal under the Left Front government. Land in excess of land ceiling was acquired and distributed amongst the peasants. Subsequently, Operation Barga was aimed at securing tenancy rights for the peasants. In Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block 98.96 acres of land was acquired and vested. Out of this 19.20 acres or 19.40% of the vested land was distributed. The total number of patta (document) holders was 47.
Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block is located at. It has an average elevation of 9 metres (30 ft).
Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block is bounded by Barisha, a neighbourhood in Kolkata, in the north, parts of Behala neighbourhood of Kolkata and Sonarpur CD block in the east, Bishnupur I and Bishnupur II CD blocks in the south and Budge Budge I CD block in the west.
South 24 Parganas district is divided into two distinct physiographic zones: the marine-riverine delta in the north and the marine delta zone in the south. As the sea receded southwards, in the sub-recent geological period, a large low lying plain got exposed. Both tidal inflows and the rivers have been depositing sediments in this plain. The periodical collapse of both the natural levees and man-made embankments speed up the process of filling up of the depressions containing brackish water wetlands. The marine delta in the south is formed of interlacing tidal channels. As non-saline water for irrigation is scarce, agriculture is monsoon dominated. Some parts of the wetlands are still preserved for raising fish.
Thakurpukur Mahestala CD block has an area of 63.08 km2. It has 1 panchayat samity, 4 gram panchayats, 80 gram sansads (village councils), 39 mouzas and 33 inhabited villages, as per the District Statistical Handbook for South Twenty-four Parganas. Maheshtala, Bishnupur and Rabindranagar police stations serve this block.Headquarters of this CD block is at Behala.
As per the 2011 Census of India, Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block had a total population of 176,203, of which 90,180 were rural and 86,023 were urban. There were 89,152 (51%) males and 87,051 (49%) females. Population below 6 years was 18,079. Scheduled Castes numbered 60,372 (34.26%) and Scheduled Tribes numbered 505 (0.29%).
As per the 2001 Census of India, Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block had a total population of 136,866, out of which 70,420 were males and 66,446 were females. Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block registered a population growth of 35.09 per cent during the 1991-2001 decade. Decadal growth for South 24 Parganas district was 20.89 per cent. Decadal growth in West Bengal was 17.84 per cent.
Census Towns in Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block (2011 census figures in brackets): Joka (9,302), Chata Kalikapur (24,985), Ganye Gangadharpur (5,210), Rameswarpur (7,200), Asuti (6,272), Hanspukuria (3,887), Kalua (15,735), Ramchandrapur (5,272) and Samali (7,180).
Large villages (with 4,000+ population) in Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block (2011 census figures in brackets): Khanberia (4,682), Rasapunja (8,036), Banagram (4,098), Chak Rajumolla (5,308), Sarsuna (5,563), Purba Barisha (5,965) and Chak Thakurani (5,891).
As per the 2011 census, the total number of literates in Thakurpukur Mahestala CD block was 132,097 (83.54% of the population over 6 years) out of which males numbered 70,300 (87.95% of the male population over 6 years) and females numbered 61,797 (79.03% of the female population over 6 years). The gender disparity (the difference between female and male literacy rates) was 8.92%.
As per the 2001 Census of India, Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD Block had a total literacy of 74.80 per cent. While male literacy was 82.00 per cent female literacy was 67.10 per cent. South 24 Parganas district had a total literacy of 69.40 per cent, male literacy being 79.20 per cent and female literacy being 59.00 per cent.
|Literacy in CD Blocks of|
South 24 Parganas district
|Alipore Sadar subdivision|
|Bishnupur I – 78.33%|
|Bishnupur II – 81.37%|
|Budge Budge I – 80.57%|
|Budge Budge II – 79.13%|
|Thakurpukur Maheshtala – 83.54%|
|Baruipur – 76.46%|
|Bhangar I – 72.06%|
|Bhangar II – 74.49%|
|Jaynagar I – 73.17%|
|Jaynagar II – 69.71%|
|Kultali – 69.37%|
|Sonarpur – 79.70%|
|Basanti – 68.32%|
|Canning I – 70.76%|
|Canning II – 66.51%|
|Gosaba – 78.98%|
|Diamond Harbour subdivision|
|Diamond Harbour I – 75.72%|
|Diamond Harbour II – 76.91%|
|Falta – 77.17%|
|Kulpi – 75.49%|
|Magrahat I – 73.82%|
|Magrahat II – 77.41%|
|Mandirbazar – 75.89%|
|Mathurapur I – 73.93%|
|Mathurapur II – 77.77%|
|Kakdwip – 77.93%|
|Namkhana – 85.72|
|Patharpratima – 82.11%|
|Sagar – 84.21%|
|Source: 2011 Census: CD Block Wise|
Primary Census Abstract Data
In the 2001 census, Bengali was the mother tongue for 97.9% of the population of the district, followed by Hindi with 1.5%, Urdu 0.3%, Odia and Telugu (0.1% each).
The West Bengal Official Language (Second Amendment) Bill, 2012, included Hindi, Santhali, Odiya and Punjabi as official languages if it is spoken by a population exceeding 10 per cent of the whole in a particular block or sub-division or a district. Subsequently, Kamtapuri, Rajbanshi and Kurmali were also included in the list of minority languages by the West Bengal Official Language (Second Amendment) Bill, 2018.However, as of 2019, there is no official / other reliable information about the areas covered.
In the 2011 Census of India, Hindus numbered 118,615 and formed 67.32% of the population in Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block. Muslims numbered 46,945 and formed 26.64% of the population. Others numbered 10,643 and formed 6.04% of the population. Amongst the others, Christians numbered 9,954.
The proportion of Hindus in South Twenty-four Parganas district has declined from 76.0% in 1961 to 63.2% in 2011. The proportion of Muslims in South Twenty-four Parganas district has increased from 23.4% to 35.6% during the same period. Christians formed 0.8% in 2011.
As per the Human Development Report for South 24 Parganas district, published in 2009, in Thakurpukur Mahestala CD block the percentage of households below poverty line was 6.44%, the lowest amongst all CD blocks in the district. As per rural household survey in 2005, the proportion of households in South 24 Parganas with poverty rates below poverty line was 34.11%, way above the state and national poverty ratios. The poverty rates were very high in the Sundarban region with all thirteen CD blocks registering poverty ratios above 30% and eight CD blocks had more than 40% of the population in the BPL category.
In Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block in 2011, amongst the class of total workers, cultivators numbered 2,320 and formed 3.41%, agricultural labourers numbered 2,894 and formed 4.26%, household industry workers numbered 4,080 and formed 6.00% and other workers numbered 58,687 and formed 86.33%. Total workers numbered 67,981 and formed 38.58% of the total population, and non-workers numbered 108,222 and formed 61.42% of the population.
The District Human Development Report points out that in the blocks of region situated in the close proximity of the Kolkata metropolis, overwhelming majority are involved in the non-agricultural sector for their livelihood. On the other hand, in the Sundarban region, overwhelming majority are dependent on agriculture. In the intermediate region, there is again predominance of the non-agricultural sector. Though the region is not very close to Kolkata, many places are well connected and some industrial/ economic development has taken place.
Note: In the census records a person is considered a cultivator, if the person is engaged in cultivation/ supervision of land owned by self/government/institution. When a person who works on another person's land for wages in cash or kind or share, is regarded as an agricultural labourer. Household industry is defined as an industry conducted by one or more members of the family within the household or village, and one that does not qualify for registration as a factory under the Factories Act. Other workers are persons engaged in some economic activity other than cultivators, agricultural labourers and household workers. It includes factory, mining, plantation, transport and office workers, those engaged in business and commerce, teachers, entertainment artistes and so on.
There are 33 inhabited villages in Thakurpukur Mahestala CD block, as per District Census Handbook, South Twenty-four Parganas, 2011. 100% villages have power supply. 32 villages (96.97%) have drinking water supply. 4 villages (12.12%) have post offices. 33 villages (100%) have telephones (including landlines, public call offices and mobile phones). 20 villages (60.61%) have pucca (paved) approach roads and 12 villages (36.36%) have transport communication (includes bus service, rail facility and navigable waterways). 1 village (3.03%) has an agricultural credit society and 5 villages (15.15%) have banks.
According to the District Human Development Report, agriculture is an important source of livelihood in South Twentyfour Parganas district. The amount of cultivable land per agricultural worker is only 0.41 hectare in the district. Moreover, the irrigation facilities have not been extended to a satisfactory scale. Agriculture mostly remains a mono-cropped activity.
As per the District Census Handbook, the saline soil of the district is unfit for cultivation, but the non-salty lands are very fertile. While rice is the main food crop, jute is the main cash crop.
In the Thakurpukur Mahestala CD block, in 2013-14, net area under effective pisciculture was 185 hectares, engaging 1,550 persons in the profession, and with an approximate annual production of 16,080 quintals. 
Pisciculture is an important source of employment in South 24 Parganas district. As of 2001, more than 4.5 lakh people were engaged in Pisciculture. Out of this 2.57 lakhs were from the 13 blocks in the Sundarbans.
South 24 Parganas district is listed as a backward region and receives financial support from the Backward Regions Grant Fund. The fund, created by the Government of India, is designed to redress regional imbalances in development. As of 2012, 272 districts across the country were listed under this scheme. The list includes 11 districts of West Bengal.
Thakurpukur Mahestala CD block has 13 originating/ terminating bus routes.
In 2013-14, Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block had 56 primary schools with 6,668 students, 1 middle school with 109 students, 7 high schools with 2,152 students and 11 higher secondary schools with 8,853 students. Thakupukur Maheshtala CD block had 1 technical/ professional institution with 948 students and 209 institutions for special and non-formal education with 10,292 students. Maheshtala municipal area (outside the CD block) had 2 general degree colleges with 1,855 students.
See also – Education in India
As per the 2011 census, in Thakurpukur Maheshtala CD block, amongst the 33 inhabited villages, 2 villages did not have a school, 13 villages had two or more primary schools, 11 villages had at least 1 primary and 1 middle school and 10 villages had at least 1 middle and 1 secondary school.
In 2014, Thakurpukur Mahestala CD block had 1 block primary health centre and 7 private nursing homes with total 219 beds and 32 doctors (excluding private bodies). It had 19 family welfare subcentres. 154 patients were treated indoor and 29,942 patients were treated outdoor in the hospitals, health centres and subcentres of the CD block.
As per 2011 census, in Thakurpukur Mahestala CD block, 1 village had a community health centre, 2 villages had primary health centres, 10 villages had primary health subcentres, 2 villages had maternity and child welfare centres, 12 villages had medicine shops and out of the 33 inhabited villages 9 villages had no medical facilities.