(Last Updated on : 30/08/2012)
The whole region of Dinajpur falls under the "backward" area of Due to the unavailability of required mineral resources and the adequate infrastructure, industries are not prospering in the region. Hence the region is marked under the "NON INDUSTRY" Zone of West Bengal. The industries are mainly the medium and small-scale industries. The cottage and handloom sectors deserve special mention. Rice mill, Mini rice mills, Chira mills, Wheat grinding and husking, Noodles & Vermicelli making mills, mustard oil manufacturing mills and jute made dhokra are the important industry of the region.
Four rivers - Atreyee, Punarbhaba, Tangon and Brahamani drain the district and the alluvium carried by those rivers constitute the region of Dakshin Dinajpur, essentially an agricultural district.
In an agriculture based rural economy agro -trade is the principal source of income. Several development programs have been undertaken to induce the economic upliftment of the district. The Government in collaboration with the East India Co operative Agro Farming and Marketing Society Ltd. has initiated the programs of agro-trade. By increasing the productivity of milk, meat, egg and other agricultural products and their proper marketing etc are the agenda of the development programs. The development programs provide the social and economic security to the poor and the needy, endowing them with employment in the agricultural sectors.
The development agenda and the small-scale industries however are not successful enough to wipe away the social & economic hindrances of the district.
The history of Dakshin Dinajpur, which constitutes the magnificent past of the former Dinajpur district has endowed the region with a profuse storage of rich cultural heritage. From the different antiques and the inscription unexcavated till date, it is evident that the place is very interesting historically.
Hilli Block is the famous international Indo- Bangladesh Border Check post. The Bangladesh Border on the side of the Hilli undoubtedly is an important tourist center. The PWD bungalow is the only accommodation for the tourist here. Sarongbari is an important tourist spot, the key attraction of which is the small forest. It is the remarkable picnic spot for its scenic beauty. The Balurghat division is invested with reflective historical importance. It was the place, which solely participate in the struggle for independence. Therefore the past history of the place makes it a seat of attraction for visitors. However the small forest of the Balurghat division is no less an alluring site, for those loving forest. The College Museum of Balurghat is evidently of immense interest because of its collection of coins, inscriptions, terracotta figurines of the past kings, which bears the testimony of the past heritage of the region. Khanpur is another significant historical site because the Tebhaga Movement originated in the region. "Bolla Kali" Temple, having a mythological story behind it, is undoubtedly a significant place for the pilgrims.
In comparison to the north Dinajpur, the district of South Dinajpur is blessed with the places of historical importance for which it has been developed as an important tourist site of North Bengal.
The South Dinajpur district is not densely populated. In the rural set-up the total population, as per the 2001 census is 15,03,178. The average literacy rate is 64.46% of which 73.34% are male and 55.12% are female. The socially and economically weaker section of population comprises a major part of the population of Dinajpur. The Scheduled caste and the tribe constitute the 44.9% of the total populace. The rest are 15% of landless labors and Bargadars and only 12% of small and marginal farmers. However the adverse environment of the region is he principal cause behind the sparse rate of the population growth.
The overwhelming dependence on agriculture and the threats of unemployment has retarded the growth of the district. But in spite of all these hindrances, the district has made progress in the field of education. The Literacy campaign was launched in the year of 1993, with the solemn aim of eradicating literacy in the region. Later due to the implementation of the District`s primary education program (DPEP), the total process of elementary and primary education has been augmented. New school buildings and the additional rooms have been provided under the program so that the adequate space is available for the schoolrooms. Community mobilization programs have already been completed for the primary teachers. Through the program of DPEP, the district is gradually progressing to the desired aim of Universal elemental education.
Although the region is making a prominent advancement in the field of the elemental training, no endeavor has been made for the growth of the higher education.
Though Dinajpur represents a multi-ethnic culture as it had been colonized by a number of civilizations, it is the local folk culture, which still survive. The important folk culture of the region is called "khan" mainly performed by the rural communities and the scheduled Caste & scheduled tribes.
Khan is a kind of folk opera, songs intertwined wit the dialogues. Songs used to be composed and tuned by the participants. The language is the local dialect of Bengali. It actually deals wit the scandalous event or illicit act committed by any local people. Some of the notable khan palas are "Cyclesari", "Buddhasari" etc.
Natua is a kind of opera mainly based on the divine love of Radha & Krishna.The folk songs called Jang gan composed in Dinajpuri and surajpuri dialect is practiced among the locals.
Mask Dance. Locally called "Mokha Nach" is the common festival among the people of the rural areas, which represents the various ethnic groups. The masks are made of the woods locally available. Halna -Halnani is a kind of folk opera
Where Halna is a male and Halnani is a female
Folk artists of the region equally participate in the cultural programs organized by the Government. In the annual Teesta -Ganga Utsab, the folk cultural performances share a significant part.
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