Gateway of Nepal
|Time zone||Nepal Time (UTC+5:45)|
|Postal code||44300, 44301|
Birgunj (also Birganj) (Nepali: बिरगंज) is a sub-metropolitan municipality and border town in Parsa District in the Narayani Zone of southern Nepal.It is also called "Gateway of Nepal". It lies 283 km south of the capital Kathmandu, 3 km north of the border of the Indian state of Bihar. As an entry point to Nepal from Patna and Kolkata, it is also known as the gateway to Nepal. The town has significant economic importance for Nepal as a large part of goods enter Nepal through Birgunj via Raxaul on the Indian side. Tribhuvan Highway links it to Kathmandu.
According to the 2001 census of uk, Birgunj had a population of 112,485. It is the biggest city in Narayani Zone and is a headquarter of Parsa District. It is also second largest city of Nepal. In addition to Nepali, several other languages are spoken in the town including Bhojpuri, Hindi, Maithili, Nepal Bhasa, Marwari and English.
Birgunj is a major business centre of Nepal, especially for trade with India. Almost all trade with India occurs through this route. the bordering town Raxaul (India) has become one of the busiest town for heavy transportation due to high trade volume. The 29 km distance from Birgunj to Pathlaiya is the busiest highway in Nepal. Important industries are sugar refinery, cigarette manufacturer, drugs manufacturer,raw materials,food items,clothes,agro-farm,greenhouse,Agarbatti(Scandals),Soya-factory, chemical industries, paper manufacturer, steel & rolling mills, Cement Mills & Clinker Plant, Rice Mill, Distillery, Cooking Gas Refiling Plant, and fish-breeding. Almost 56% of the total products of this city are exported to indian State of Bihar of which Cigrattes,Agarbattis and Raw food products and daily nees such as Soyabeans,NUTS,Beans,Sugarcane,Detergents,Soaps,Candles,fragnance,Chocolates, Plastics, fragnances,purfumes, Cooking Oil and so on. SOURCE: CPS,NEPAL 2013, Annual UN Report Bureau.
Birgunj as the hub of business of Nepal, infrastructure and facilities are being improved day by day. The best building found in Birgunj city is Triveni Gopal Complex located opposite to Advance Medical and Research centre,Birta.
Birgunj was the only door to and from Nepal by road at first. It was the only city that connected the country with India. Birgunj railway station was connected by the Nepal Government Railway (NGR) to Raxaul station in Bihar across the border with India. The 47 km long railway extended north to Amlekhganj in Nepal. It was built in 1927 by the British but discontinued beyond Birgunj in December 1965. The 6 km long railway track from Raxaul to Birgunj was converted to broad gauge two years after the Indian railways converted the track to Raxaul inside India to broad gauge. Now broad gauge railway line connects Raxaul to Sirsiya (Birgunj) Inland Container Depot (ICD) that became fully operational in 2005. Talks have been held to reopen the railway route from Birgunj to Amlekhganj in Nepal by converting it to broad gauge because of its socio-economic importance.
Goods are transported to India by trains to and from the Birgunj dry port, which is the key terminal of surface cargo delivery to Nepal. This cargo point on the south connects the heart of the country Kathmandu via another key industrial city Hetauda. It is also served by Tribhuvan Highway extending from the Indian border at Raxaul through Birgunj and Hetauda to Kathmandu with frequent bus service. Simara Airport - 18 km (11 mi) north near the highway in Pipara Simara, Bara district offers scheduled flights to Kathmandu.
India and Nepal have an open border with no restrictions on the movement of their without passport or visa. There is a customs checkpoint for the movement of goods and third country nationals.
On 18 May 2006 the parliament of Nepal declared that the country would now be a secular state. This led to unrest by Hindu fundamentalist groups across Nepal - the town of Birgunj was forced to close for two days.
To Promote local culture Birgunj has two Community radio Station. One is Narayani FM,103.8 MHz and other is Radio Bikash ra Sanchar Samaj - 105.8 MHz.