The discovery of a number of inscriptions of the Gupta and later Gupta periods within or near the district of West Dinajpur District bears ample testimony to the sway of the Guptas over Pundravardhana. Copper plate inscriptions found herein offer valuable information about certain aspects of the administration of the country during the reign of the Gupta Kings. The inscriptions reveal an efficient and methodical administration during this period and the use of gold and silver coins testifies the prosperity of the country.
Following the Guptas were the rulers of the Pala dynasty. The Pala emperor had a well-organised navy. The armed forces included soldiers mounted on elephants, cavalrymen and soldiers mounted on camels. Though the Pala kings were staunch followers of Buddhism, they were quite secular in administration. The Pala dynasty came to an end in Bengal during the reign of Madana Pala. Vijayasena of the Sena dynasty defeated him.
The rule of the Senas over North Bengal, however, was rather short-lived as the Sena kingdom was replaced by the Muslim kingdom established by Muhammad Bakhtiyar Khalji in 1201 AD. Vijayasena, Vallalasena and Lakshmanasena were the Sena kings who ruled over North Bengal in the 12th century AD. From 1227-87 AD no less than fifteen chiefs were in authority at Lakhnawati and of them ten were Mamluks of the Imperial Court of Delhi. The history of the period is a sickening record of internal dissensions, usurpations and murders.
Bengal came under Mughal rule in 1585 AD when Akbar conquered the place. It remained under Mughal rule for about 200 years. In the reign of Akbar, we find the first authentic traces of the great zamindari family of Dinajpur, with which for the next two centuries the history of the district is closely interwoven. The British East India Company acquired the Diwani of Bengal in 1765 and consequently the district came under their control.
During the later half of the 18th century, the district was subjected to the plundering raids of the Sanyasis and Fakirs. Some of these sanyasis settled down and acquired properties in many places including Dinajpur district. These sanyasis and fakirs entered the district from Western India apparently for pilgrimage purposes. Though Warren Hastings curbed the activities of the Sanyasis, the fakirs continued to oppress the people of the district even as late as 1799. The British East India Company took vigorous measures to bring them to book and by the beginning of the 19th century, completely stopped these activities.
With the announcement of the partition of Bengal, 1905, a lot of agitation and rebellion was seen taking place in all of Bengal including the Dinajpur district. By the First World War, revolutionary movement continued in the district of Dinajpur. When the struggle for freedom began in 1919; local congress leaders of Balurghat promoted the ideals of the Congress throughout the sub-division. Primary Congress Committees were organised even in remote villages. Parallel administration was set up. Hindus and Muslims of the district jointly took part Khilafat movement of 1920. In 1942, Purna Chandra, noted revolutionary, was arrested at Dinajpur. Dinajpur continued to figure in the reports of the Government as a troubled district. During the months of June and July, 1932, the Santals at Akchha in Gangarampur police station of Balurghat sub-division stopped paying rents, chowkidari taxes, etc. The West Dinajpur district was further bifurcated in 1992 into Uttar Dinajpur and Dakshin Dinajpur districts.
(Last Updated on : 30-12-2013)
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