Gateway of Nepal
The Nepalese bordering gate to India in Birgunj
|Time zone||Nepal Time (UTC+5:45)|
|Postal code||44300, 44301|
Birgunj (also Birganj) (Nepali: वीरगंज) is a sub-metropolitan municipality and border town in Parsa District in the Narayani Zone of southern Nepal. It lies 283 km (176 mi) south of the capital Kathmandu, 3 km (1.9 mi) north of the border of the Indian state of Bihar. As an entry point to Nepal from Patna and Kolkata, it is known as the "gateway to Nepal". The town has significant economic importance for Nepal as most of its trade with India is via Birgunj and the Indian town of Raxaul. Tribhuvan Highway links Birgunj to Nepal's capital, Kathmandu.
The settlement was named after the Rana Prime Minister Bir Shamsher ,thus acquiring the name Birgunj .
According to the 2011 Census, Birgunj has a population of 285,011. It is the biggest city in Narayani Zone and the headquarters of Parsa District. In addition to Nepali, several other languages are spoken, including Bhojpuri, Hindi, Maithili and English. However Nepali is the official language. Birgunj is known as the financial capital of the country and as a major trade hub.
Birgunj is a major business centre of Nepal, especially for trade with India. Almost all trade with India occurs through this route. The Indian border town of Raxaul has become one of the busiest towns for heavy transportation due to high trade volume. The 29 km (18 mi) distance from Birgunj to Pathlaiya is the busiest highway in Nepal. Most industries are represented, including agriculture, chemicals, textiles, wood, petroleum, etc. Almost 56% of the total products of Birgunj are exported to the Indian state of Bihar.
As an important business hub of Nepal, infrastructure and facilities are being improved continuously. The biggest building in the city is Triveni Gopal Complex, followed by Ganesh Apartment, and Laxmi Compartment. Markets include Rungta Market, Sarraf Market, New Market, and Pumpum Building. New buildings are being built,[when?] including Nepal Telecom, Siddartha Bank, and Pujan Hotel. The Nepal Telecom building, in particular, has been built with modern techniques. The city is facilated with luxurious Hotels like Hotel Visuwa, Hotel Makalu, Hotel suraj, Baba International Hotel, Kailash Hotel, Hotel kumu Palace serving international fooding n lodging facility. The city also includes one and only national cricket and football stadium named Narayani Stadium, the largest stadium of the Narayani Zone.
Birgunj was the only city that connected the capital city 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 (29 mi) 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 (3.7 mi) 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 the 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. Trains run to major cities of India from Raxaul, including the Satyagraha express to Delhi, Mithila express to Kolkata, Lokmanya Tilak express to Mumbai, and HYD-RXL express to Hyderabad.
Goods are transported to and from India via 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 citizens without passport or visa. There is a customs checkpoint for the movement of goods and third country nationals.[clarification needed]
Colleges and Universities
Birgunj is an educational solution to many villages associated to Parsa and other surrounding districts. Majority of Students from Villages prefer Birgunj as there career making place.
There are many colleges associated to Tribhuvan University (TU) of Nepal and Purbanchal University (PU). Thakur Ram Multiple Campus is the government college that has the most reasonable fee and qualified faculties.
Whereas for children schooling parents always choose the top schools like Gyanda Academy, Delhi Public School, DAV. However Gautam School and Kadambari Academy is considered to be the best for SLC stream. National Infotech College is one of the best college of the city dedicated to science and technology. BPC college is considered as the largest management college of the city. National Medical College is the largest private hospital of the zone and good choice for the MBBS study(students from India , Pakistan and other nearby countries). Birgunj is always in a front look for bringing a change in the teaching learning system though the teaching system still set back compared to the Western and some parts of Eastern.
On 18 May 2006 the parliament of Nepal declared that the country would become a secular state. This led to unrest by Hindu fundamentalist groups across Nepal; the town of Birgunj was forced to close for two days.
- CPS, NEPAL 2013, Annual UN Report Bureau..
- Nepal's Hindu majority is denouncing the recent move to end Nepal's longtime status as the world's only Hindu state. - The Christian Science Monitor