Baling

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Baling
District of Malaysia
Country  Malaysia
State  Kedah
Seat Baling
Government
 • District officer Ahmad Fisol Md Nor
Area
 • Total 1,530 km2 (590 sq mi)
Population (2009)
 • Total 204,300
 • Density 130/km2 (350/sq mi)

Baling is a major town in the northern state of Kedah in Malaysia. It is also the name of a district in which Baling town is situated. It is south of Betong, the southernmost town in Thailand.

Origin of name[edit]

The name Baling can be traced to a series of events detailed in the story of Raja Bersiong (The Fanged King), a popular legend of Kedah, recorded in the Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa. Raja Bersiong was a ruthless vampire-like king with a taste for human blood who preyed on his subjects. His subjects finally rose against him and burned down the palace. When the fanged king fled his palace at the Old Kedah capital in Lembah Bujang, he fled to a place named Merbau and began removing his fangs by twisting them by hand. As a result of the twisting act, Merbau was renamed as Merbau Pulas where pulas in Malay means twisting.

After the king had successfully removed both his fangs, he threw them away to a faraway place. The place where he stood when he threw his fangs is known as Baling which means throw and the place believed to be the site where the fangs landed was named Siong, which means fang in Malay, one of the villages in Baling district.

The name Baling is also from Thai language "Ban Ling" (Thai: บ้านลิง; Thai pronunciation: [bânliŋ]) means in Malay "Kampung kera".

History[edit]

Main article: Baling Talks

Baling was also the site where the leaders of the Malay Races Liberation Army, the newly formed Malayan Government, and the British met in 1955 to try to end the Malayan Emergency. Tunku Abdul Rahman, a leader of the Malayan government, implored the Communists to give up their arms peacefully by promising that no retaliatory action would be taken against them. The MRLA leader Chin Peng expressed skepticism of a pardon promised by the leader of a nation that had yet to gain its independence (Malaya's independence was gained in two years later in 1957). Chin Peng insisted that the Malayan government and the British endorse the MRLA as a legal Communist Party so that it could run in the forthcoming elections. This was denied, however, and thus no agreement was reached.

The towns that Baling has are Kuala Ketil, Parit Panjang, Tawar, Kuala Pegang, Kupang, Baling, Kg Lalang and Kota Baling Jaya Batu 42.

One of the small towns in Baling is Parit Panjang. Parit Panjang is situated at the junction of four main roads. The roads are from Kuala Ketil (i.e. from Kulim and Sungai Petani), from Batu Lima, (i.e. from Gurun and Alor Setar),and from Baling Town via Asam Jawa and from Baling via Kuala Pegang. Parit Panjang situated 13 km from Kuala Ketil and 25 km from Sungai Petani. There are six villages in Parit Panjang. The villages are Kg Banggol Berangan, Kg Sungai Tembak, Kg Carok Bakap, Kg Bukit Endoi, Kg Tandop Pisang and Kg Lanai.

In Kampung Pisang, Kupang, there is an Islamic religious school, Sekolah Menengah Agama Yayasan Khairiah. Yayasan Khairiah is one of the biggest religious school in Baling. Now it has about 1700 students coming from all over Malaysia.

References[edit]

  • Adam, Ramlah binti, Samuri, Abdul Hakim bin & Fadzil, Muslimin bin (2004). Sejarah Tingkatan 3. Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka. ISBN 983-62-8285-8.

Coordinates: 5°40′N 100°55′E / 5.667°N 100.917°E / 5.667; 100.917