|• Chairman||Aninda Bhowmick|
|• Total||3,383 km2 (1,306 sq mi)|
|Elevation||93 m (305 ft)|
|• Density||19/km2 (50/sq mi)|
|• Official||Bengali, English|
|• Regional||Bengali, Hindi, Bodo, Nepali|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|PIN||736121 , 736122 & 736123|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Alipurduars (ST) Dasrath Tirkey|
|Vidhan Sabha constituency||Alipurduars Deboprasad Roy|
Alipurduar (Pron: ˌɑ:lɪpʊəˈdwɑ:) is a municipal city and the district headquarters of Alipurduar district in north Bengal in the Indian state of West Bengal. Situated on the east bank of Kaljani River on the foothills of the Himalayas, the town is a gateway to Bhutan and northeastern states of India. The town located in the Dooars region is known for its forest, wildlife, timber and scenic beauty, since the colonial period.
The city is surrounded by deep forest and tea garden. Two rivers Kaljani and Nonai flow across the town. The river Dima flowing on the west of the town is a tributary of Kaljani and meets with the latter near Smashan Khola.
The history of Alipurduar (named after Hedayet Ali) can be reconstructed from the writings of J.F. Grunning, J. A. Milligan, D.H.E. Sunder and Sailen Debnath. After the second Anglo-Bhutan War in 1865, according to the Treaty of Sinchula, the eleven Bengal Dooars were annexed by the British. The seven Assam Dooars had already been occupied by the British in 1942. Colonel Hedayet Ali was posted as the commander at the military settlement on the bank of the River Kaljani. The entire tract of land of the Buxa Dooar was leased out to Hedayet Ali on his superannuation and the growing town adjacent to the military settlement began to grow as well. According to Debnath, the military settlement in the town of Alipurduar, in course of time, increasingly turned to be less important because of the fast growth of military cantonment at Buxa Fort in the north of the town and the Chila Roy Barrack in Cooch Behar. Later with the expansion of tea plantation and set up of railway lines, Alipurduar began to be important in terms of communication and administration. The partition of the country in 1947 led to the immigration of refugees from East Bengal and the growth of population in the town of Alipurduar.
In the 2011 census, Alipurduar Urban Agglomeration had a population of 127,342, out of which 64,898 were males and 62,444 were females. The 0–6 years population was 10,545. Effective literacy rate for the 7+ population was 89.16 per cent.
In the earlier As of 2001[update] India census, Alipurduar had a population of 73,047. Males constitute 51% of the population and females 49%. Alipurduar has an average literacy rate of 78%, higher than the national average of 59.5%; with 54% of the males and 46% of females literate. 10% of the population is under 6 years of age. The district has 11 of tribal communities including, Boro, Mech, Toto (only habitat), and Santhal.
Travel and tourism
Although Alipurduar town is not a popular tourist destination by itself, a number of interesting choices are available within a short distance. Dense forests and hills offering beautiful natural landscape surround the town. A few of them are here-
1. The most important forest in Alipurduar is Buxa Tiger Reserve, which is famous for its rare flora and fauna. The forest has the status of a National Park and hosts the mosts Bengal tigers in North Bengal. The Chilapata Forests provide an elephant corridor between the Buxa reserve and the Jaldapara National Park, another important eco-tourism destination.
2. The highest peak of Dooars, the Chota Sinchula, is in Alipurduar. Situated at an altitude of 1733m at about 12 km from Buxa the peak offers views of the impermeable forest covers of Buxa hills and Bhutan valley.
3. Rajabhatkhawa, Jayanti, Bhutanghat, and Raimatang are situated deep inside the forest, and offer wildlife tourism. Each place has forest rest-house accommodation for limited numbers of tourist.
4. A day trek to Buxa hill through dense forest track reaches Buxa fort and further up to Rovers Point and then leads to Rupam Valley in Bhutan Hill. Besides these, Adma, Gatuka, Tashigaon, Ochhlum and Lavchakha in the Buxa hill gives different flavours of touring. Jayanti Mahakal trek is another route that leads to a stalactite cave near Bhutan border. This trek is popular among the pilgrims who visit the cave to offer prayer to their deity, Lord Shiva.
Public transport includes auto rickshaws and cycle rickshaws. There is no metered vehicular transport. While 6-seater city autos ply between two fixed destinations of about 10–15 km, one can hire petrol-driven auto rickshaws from auto stands at a rate fixed by the auto authorities.
Alipurduar is a divisional headquarters of North-East Frontier Railway. It is serviced by two main railway stations. A branch from Alipurduar Junction (station code APDJ) connects the New Jalpaiguri-Alipurduar-Samuktala Road line (Dooars line) to the main line (New Jalpaiguri-New Bongaigaon section of the Barauni-Guwahati line). From Alipurduar Junction, one may either go to New Cooch Behar and then to Bamanhat (near Indo-Bangladesh border) or to Guwahati and bypass New Cooch Behar altogether. On the other hand, New Alipurduar (station code NOQ) is situated on the New Jalpaiguri-New Bongaigaon section and connects directly to many parts of India. Alipurduar has two local smaller railway stations, Alipurduar Court (APDC) and Alipur Duar (APD) where long-distance trains do not stop. Both are on the New Coochbehar-APDJ stretch.
Long-distance trains stop at New Alipurduar (NOQ) (Enquiry Number- 03564-255207). Some long-distance trains on the branch line stop at Alipurduar Junction (APDJ) (Enquiry Number- 03564-255091). However, the two junctions are on different lines and only one short-distance train Alipurduar-Kamakhya InterCity Express (train number 15471) runs between the two stations.
Bagdogra Airport situated about 148 km. away from the main town is the only functioning airport in the region. The airport is connected to Bengaluru, Chandigarh, New Delhi, Kolkata, Guwahati, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangkok, Kathmandu and Paro.
There are two bus stops for most private and state-owned buses in the region- Alipuduar NBSTC Bus Depot and Private Bus Terminus.
- NBSTC Depot: All sorts of Govt. Buses are available from here.
- Private Bus Terminus: Private buses to Siliguri, Tufanganj, Coochbehar, Jaigaon (border of Bhutan) and Assam are available from here.
- Safari Stand (near Alipurduar fire station): private safaris to Coochbehar and Falakata are available from here.
Alipurduar is a melting pot of many cultures. The tribal communities like Bodo, Rava, Mech, Santhal and Rajbanshi have a rich cultural heritage. They have their own form of art and music. Mud wall of their houses are beautifully painted.
- Major festivals observed at Alipurduar include Durga puja, Chhath Puja, Ganesh puja, Laxmi puja, Saraswati puja, and Diwali. Dooars Utsav is one of the popular fairs in Alipurduar which takes place in January.
Alipurduar is known as queen of Duars, and the town has its own music culture. Rock music culture is growing rapidly here. Alipurduar has more than 15 Bengali rock bands. There are several rock fest organized here, the most popular is Mat Fest, where a guest band comes as a judge and many other up and coming bands get an opportunity to showcase their talents in front of them.
Alipurduar's schools and college are either run by the government or by private and religious organisations. The schools usually use English and Bengali as their medium of instruction, although the use of Hindi language is also stressed. The schools are affiliated with the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) or the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) or the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education & West Bengal Council of Higher Secondary Education. Colleges run by affiliation of University of North Bengal and West Bengal University of Technology.
Schools at Alipurdur main city
- Alipurduar High School [Semi-Govt],
- Mc William Higher Secondary School [Semi-Govt],
- Jitpur Higher Secondary School [Semi-Govt],
- Railway Higher Secondary School [Govt],
- Shayamaprasad Vidya Mandir (boys and girls) [Semi-Govt],
- Kendriya Vidyalaya [Govt],
- Newtown Girls' High School [Semi-Govt],
- Balika Siksha Mandir [Semi-Govt],
- Alipurduar Girls' High School [Semi-Govt],
- Gobinda High School [Semi-Govt],
- Ravikanta High School [Semi-Govt],
- Stepping Stone Model School [Private],
- The Little Flowers English School [Private],
- Techno India Group Public School [Private],
- St. Xavier's School [Private],
- Dooars International Public School [Private],
- Sishu Mahal [Private],
- Sarada Sishu Tirtha [Bidya Bharathi funded].
Nirmal Girls High School-Junction
- Alipurduar College (affiliated with University of North Bengal)
- Dooars Academy of Technology and Management (affiliated with West Bengal University of Technology)
- Industrial Training Institute (ITI), Birpara, Alipurduar
- Alipurduar Mahila Mahavidyalaya, (affiliated with University of North Bengal)
- Vivekananda College, Alipurduar (affiliated with University of North Bengal)
- Jalpaiguri Dooars Primary Teachers' Tranning Institute (affiliated with West Bengal Board of Primary Education and approved by NCTE)
- Eastern Dooars B.Ed Training College, Bhatibari, Alipurduar (affiliated with University of North Bengal)
- Newspapers: English-language newspapers include the Times of India, The Economic Times, The Asian Age, The Statesman and The Telegraph. Several Bengali newspapers, including Anandabazar Patrika, Uttarbanga Sambad, Bartaman, Ganashakti, Aajkaal and Pratidin are also available.
- Radio: All India Radio.
- Television: Alipurduar receives almost all the television channels that are received by the rest of India. Apart from the state-owned terrestrial network Doordarshan, cable television serves most of the homes in the city, while satellite television is common in the outlying areas and in wealthier households. Besides mainstream Indian channels, the city also receives some Nepali and Bangladeshi television channels. Local news broadcasts, sporting events, and concerts are broadcast live or delayed via cable to many households. DTH services by government and private companies are also available such as Tata Sky, Dish TV, Videocon d2h, Airtel Digital TV and Reliance Digital TV. Alipurduar has four local channels - FCC, FCN, FCC Variety and Ex-TV Bangla.
- Cell phone networks: Alipurduar serviced by cell phone companies such ase BSNL (3G & 2G), Airtel (3G & 2G), Reliance (2G), Vodafone (3G & 2G), Aircel (2G), Idea Cellular (3G & 2G), Tata Indicom (2G), Tata Docomo (2G), RIM (2G), MTS (2G) and Virgin Mobile(2G).
- Internet: Internet cafes can be found in the main market area, served through broadband services provided by BSNL.
- Alipurduar District Hospital (Govt. Hospital),
- Green-Land Nourishing Home (Private Hospital),
- Maa Seva (Private Hospital),
- Alipurduar Lions Eye Hospital: established in 1995, it is one of the biggest eye hospitals in this region of Alipurduar, Coochbehar and Dooars.
- Matri Sadan (Private Hospital), at new Alipurduar.
- North Bengal Medical College is situated at Siliguri about 136.4 km from Alipurduar main city.
- Buxa Tiger Reserve, IUCN category II national park
- Jayanti Hills
- Buxa Fort, built by British Raj
- Jaldapara National Park
- Chilapata Forests
- Jaigaon, a small town of Alipurduar and near the Bhutan border
- Rajabhatkhawa Museum at Rajabhatkhawa
- Rai matang
- Rovers point
- Roopang valley
- Tea Gardens
- Durga Bari, at Alipurduar puran bazar
- Chinnomosta Kali Mandir,Front of Alipurduar Junction railway station
- Bajranbali Temple, at North Point, tea garden
- Hanuman Temple, at Railway Bazar, Alipurduar Junction
- Loknath Mandir, at Railway Bazar, Alipurduar Junction
- Shani Maharaj Temple, at Railway Bazar, Alipurduar Junction
- Balaji Tamil Temple, at Railway Bazar, Alipurduar Junction
- 11 Hat Kali Bali, Newtown, Alipurduar
- Satsang Temple, Newtown, Alipurduar
- Satsang Temple, Damanpur, Alipurduar Junction
- Kaljani River
- Nonai River
- Alipurduars (Lok Sabha constituency)
- Alipurduar district
- Alipurduar Junction railway station
- Alipurduar Railway Junction
- New Alipurduar Railway Station
- Official website
- Alipurduar travel information
- Alipurduar travel guide from Wikivoyage
- Alipurduar Junction Railway Station
- Sailen Debnath, The Dooars in Historical Transition, ISBN 9788186860441
- "Urban Agglomerations/Cities having population 1 lakh and above" (PDF). Provisional Population Totals, Census of India 2011. Retrieved 2011-10-21.
- "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01.