West Bengal Information

Bengal was called as Vanga in the Vedic Age, during the Mahabharatha period this area was divided into small kingdoms and principalities ruled by the chieftains.  The Mauryans and the Guptas established their rule around the 3rd century.  The palas established their strong rule from about 800 AD till the 11th century after which the senas ruled.  Bengal became a part of the Delhi sultanate and later the Mugal Empire in the beginning in the 13th century.
The nearness to the sea also saw many foreigners reaching these, shores.  The Portuguese, the Dutch, the French, the Danish and the British.  The British people captured the power of Bengal.  They partitioned Bengal on the basis of religion in 1905.  Kolkata remained the capital till 1911.  When India became independent, Bengal was partitioned between India and Pakistan in 1947.  India’s share came to be known as West Bengal and Pakistan’s share was called East Pakistan.

West Bengal General Information

Capital
The capital of West Bengal is Kolkata.
Districts
There are 19 districts in the state.
Languages
The principal languages spoken by the people are Bengali.
State Bird
White throated king fisher is this state’s bird.
State Animal
This state’s animal is Royal Bengal tiger.
State flower
Night flowering Jasmine is this state’s flower.
West Bengal’s culture is distinguished by its festivals, music, cinema, Drama and literature.  Being the land of Bankim Chandra, Rabindranath and Aurobindo, West Bengal is said to be the birth place of modern literature.
The theatre in Bengal dates back to the 18th century.  Theatre gained prominence during the freedom struggle of India.  When it was used as a tool of expression.  Girish Chandra Ghosh, Rabi Roy, Sisir Bhaduri, Badal Sircar Shobha sen and Soumitra Chateerjee are some of the prominent names in Bengali theatre. When it comes to contemporary cinema, the immense contribution of the great Bengali director satiyajit Ray cannot be ignored, Music and dances are also integral parts of the Bengali culture.  The people of Bengal are closely associated with Rabindra Sangeet, Rabindra Nritya Natya which consists of songs and song-dance sequences composed by Tagore and Nazrul Geeti, or songs by Kazi Nazrul Isla.  Folk dances and songs are also popular Bankura’s famed hand made pottery, especially the decorated horse, is a traditional craft.  The biggest festival in the state is Durga Puja.
West Bengal Stretches from the Himalayas to the Bay of Bengal.  The state is surrounded by the three international frontiers in the north, namely Bhutan Nepal and Bangladesh.  Bihar lies on the Western side.  To the Southwest side lies Orissa, and the Bay of Bengal lies to the South of the West Bengal.
West Bengal, there fore offers a variety of geographical features.  The state has the alluvial plains known as the Dooars in the South and the mountainous Himalayan region in the north.  The dense wooded regions in the Dooars have rich and varied flora and fauna.  The malda region, irrigated by the river Mahananda constitutes the fertile mid section.
The alluvial plains in the south are the basin of the River Damodar also known as the “river of Bengali’s sorrow”.  The name was coined after a number of floods in the region were attributed to the river.  The other main rivers are the Ganga and Hoogly.  The district of 24 parganas has pristine forests known as the Sundarbans.