|• Chairman||Aninda Bhowmick(municipality councilor)|
|• Total||3,383 km2 (1,306 sq mi)|
|Elevation||93 m (305 ft)|
|• Density||38/km2 (97/sq mi)|
|• Official||Bengali, English|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|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, West Bengal, India. Situated on the east bank of Kaljani River on the foothills of the Himalayas, the town is a gateway to Bhutan and North Eastern states of India. This town located in the Dooars region is known for its forest, wildlife, timber and scenic beauty, since the colonial period.
The town is surrounded by deep forest and tea garden. While there are two rivers flowing across the town namely Kaljani and Nonai. There is a river called Dima which flows on the west of the town. It's a tributary of Kaljani and meets with the later 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 Government, although the Seven Assam Dooars had already been occupied by the British in 1942; and subsequently 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 away in the north of the town as well as the Chila Roy Barrack in Cooch Behar. Along with the expansion of tea plantation and set up of Railway lines, Alipurduar began to be important in terms of communication and administration; and the partition of the country in 1947, led to the immigration of refugees from East Pakistan 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.
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.
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 attained much fame all over India for its enormous natural resources in terms of rare flora and fauna. The forest has the status of a National Park and houses the maximum number of 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 beautiful sights of the impermeable forest covers of Buxa hills and Bhutan valley.
3. Rajabhatkhawa, Jayanti, Bhutanghat, and Raimatang are some other major destinations in Alipurduar. Situated deep inside the forest, all of these places offer very good scope for wildlife tourism. Each place has forest rest-house accommodation for limited numbers of tourist.
4. Alipurduar does not deprive trek lovers. 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 popular route that leads to a stalactite cave near Bhutan border. This trek is very popular among the pilgrims who visit the cave to offer prayer to their deity, Lord Shiva.
Alipurduar is a divisional headquarters of North-East Frontier Railway. It is serviced by two railway stations. A branch from Alipurduar Junction (Indian Railways 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 commence to New Cooch Behar and then to Bamanhat (nearing to Indo-Bangladesh border) or to Guwahati and bypass New Cooch Behar altogether. On the other hand, New Alipurduar (Code: NOQ) is situated on the New Jalpaiguri-New Bongaigaon section and connects directly to many parts of India. Alipurduar is further serviced by two satellite stations: Alipurduar Court (APDC) and Alipur Duar (APD). Both are on the New Coochbehar-APDJ stretch.in India only this sub-division has 4 railway stations. Nearest Airport is Baghdogra near Siliguri.
Alipurduar is a melting pot of many cultures. The tribal communities like Bodo, Rava, Mech, Santhal and Rajbanshi has a rich cultural heritage. They have their own form of art and music. Mud wall of their houses are beautifully painted.
There are three colleges and many high schools in Alipurduar town. Some of the schools, namely, Alipurduar High School, Mc William Higher Secondary School, Jitpur Higher Secondary School, Railway Higher Secondary School, Shayamaprasad Vidya Mandir (boys and girls), Kendriya Vidyalaya,Newtown Girls' High School, Balika Siksha Mandir, Alipurduar Girls' High School, Gobinda High School are reputed and big in size. Beside the government aided schools, there a few private schools of which the Stepping Stone Model School and the Little Flowers English School are important. Alipurduar College is the premier institute of higher education in the whole of the Alipuduar Sub-Division, in the near future to be declared as a district. Apart from the Vivekananda College, Alipuduar Mahila Mahavidyalaya is also growing, though in a slow pace.There are all the streams - science, arts and commerce - in Alipurduar College.
- Alipurduar College: Dr. Subrata Panchanan, Principal
- Vivekananda College: Dr. Ratna Dey, Teacher-in-Charge
The 2 big hospitals in this region are --- a)Alipurduar Subdivisional Hospital & b)Alipurduar lions Eye Hospital.The Alipurduar lions eye hospital(established in 1995) is one of the biggest eye hospitals in this region of Alipurduar, coochbehar and Dooars with a population of 3.5 million (approx.).Matri Sadan,at new Alipurduar is another Hospital.
Alipurduar is known as queen of Duars, and the town has its own music culture.But nowadays rock music culture is growing rapidly here. In a small town like Alipurduar, it now 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.
- Sailen Debnath, The Dooars in Historical Transition, ISBN 9788186860441
- "Urban Agglomerations/Cities having population 1 lakh and above". 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.
- "Assembly Constituencies - Corresponding Districts and Parliamentary Constituencies". West Bengal. Election Commission of India. Archived from the original on 3 October 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-01.