Butwal city view from top of Lumbini Nursing Hospital
|Nickname(s): batauli bazaar|
|Motto: butwal nagarpalika|
|• Type||Butwal Municipality|
|• Total||1,470 km2 (570 sq mi)|
|• Density||0.081/km2 (0.21/sq mi)|
|Time zone||Nepal Time (UTC+5:45)|
Butwal (Nepali: बुटवल) is a city in southern Nepal in Rupandehi District, in Lumbini Zone—of which it is the administrative center. It is located 261 kilometres west of Kathmandu and 22 kilometers north of Siddharthanagar, at the northern edge of the Terai plain below the Siwalik Hills. Its name is derived from Batauli Bazaar in the town's oldest district.
Through highway and air links, Butwal connects western Nepal to the capital Kathmandu. It has highway connections to the Indian Border at Sunauli and to hill towns Tansen and Pokhara. Butwal is a major gateway to Nepal.
Historically Butwal connected Nepali people with their Indian neighbors. As the British East India Company annexed Awadh from its hereditary rulers while the Shah Dynasty attempted to annex the Terai, Butwal became one of bones of contention leading to the Gurkha War 1814-16.
When King Tribhuvan fled to India in 1950 during the revolt against the Rana dynasty he travelled through Butwal. Then it was little more than a village on the western bank of Tilottama River (also known as Tinau). With completion in 1968 of Siddhartha Highway from the border at Sunauli through Butwal to Pokhara and then in the 1990s Mahendra Highway across the full east-west expanse of Nepal's Terai, Butwal has developed rapidly.
The population in Butwal 118,462 (census 2011) consists of mixed races; these includesPahari immigrants from nearby hill districts especially (Palpa), (Arghakhanchi) (Gulmi)and (Syangja) and people of Terai origin. There are also students who choose to live in Butwal temporarily. Butwal is also popular with ex-Gurkha soldiers commonly called Lahure (Nepali: लाहुरे) population due to historic reasons.
The population distribution in different wards are as follows:
Culture and religion
Hindus in the majority celebrate Holi, Teej, Maha Shivratri, Dashain, Tihar and Bhai Tika. Many Paharis go to their native villages during the month from Dashain through Tihar and the town becomes nearly deserted.
Nepali is the common language spoken in Butwal. Gurung, Magar and Tharu people speak native language in their community. Magar language is dominant in the hilly areas surrounding Butwal.
English is not popular; however, most of the young people can communicate in English. The shop names are generally written in English in addition to Nepali alphabet.
The economy of Butwal centers around education, entertainment and industries. Presently, the main trading centre is located near Traffic Chok and Puspalal Park. Numerous shops sell Chinese and Indian goods in this area. In recent times, the shopping district is expanding towards southern Butwal due to building up of new community and housing zones in the southern region. Besides mordern shopping, a traditional form of market called haat bazar runs twice a week. Generally, farmers directly sells to the household customers in this market.
Butwal also has small and medium scale manufacturers involved in woodwork, ironsheet, metalware and aluminium sheet. There are rice mills which serves for the local farmers. Siddhababa Rice mill, Aryal Rice Mill (Jharbaira-Murgiya) and Sita rice mill are some of the oldest and well known among the local farmers.
Butwal is also trading hub for marbles,tiles sanitary and hardwares in Nepal; it can found in cheaper rates in comparison to other parts of Nepal. Some of the trading companies like Usha Marbles, Narshang Hardware, Basyal Trade Centre, etc. are the leading retailers for marbel.
Students from nearby hilly regions also contributes to Butwal's economy. The educational facilities attracts thousands of students each year. Some of these students get involved in permanent jobs while other get involved in temporary jobs.
Butwal has also become a banking centre of the region. Various banks like Sewa Bikas Bank Ltd. and many other banks have been established with head office in Butwal, while other banks also have opened branch office in Butwal.
The trade in Butwal is managed by Butwal chamber of commerce & industry (BuCCI) which is primarly involved in safeguarding the rights of private business.
Audhyogig Byapar Mela-Butwal is a festival held in Butwal where exhibition industries from nation wide come and showcase their products. This festival is organized anualy in the month of Poush (generally December-January).
Buses are the dominant form of transportation. Private operators offer service to various destinations. Until 2003 most of the fleet was older large buses; since then operators have added newer minibuses popularly called micro. Older jeeps are used to take people to nearby hilly regions. Rickshaws are used for short-distance urban transport, however taxicabs are gaining popularity with increasing affluence. Motorcycles are a common means of personal transportation around town. The number registered has increased from 1,200 in 1999 to 80,000 in 2008.
Butwal has been a major city for distribution of information. Besides availability of national newspapers like Gorkhapatra and Kantipur, many local newspapers and magazine are also published. There are daily newspaper like Janasangarsha, Lumbini, etc. However, there are no English newspaper in this region.
Butwal is one of the few cities which installed FM radio stations before any cities in Nepal. The first FM station to be established was Lumbini FM. Since then other FM stations like Radio Jagaran - 93.6 MHz, Butwal FM -94.4 MHz, Radio Namaste 92.8 MHz, Radio Samabesi 105 MHz etc has been established. The common content of these radio stations are local and national news, music and religious programs.
There are local televisions in Butwal which runs in collaboration with cable networks. Lumbini TV, Rupandehi TV etc are some of the examples. These television channels broadcast local events and news.
Number of internet websites are also run by the local people.
In Butwal there are several bank and financial institution. Nepal Bank Ltd and Rastriya Banijya Bank are the oldest bank of Butwal. Most of the national bank has its branch office in Butwal. Standard chartered Bank, Lumbini bank ltd, NIBL, Tinau Development Bank, Mission Development Bank Ltd.,Sewa Bikas Bank, Ekata Dev Bank,Pashchimanchal Development Bank etc has either headoffice or a branch office in Butwal.
Besides bank, local cooperative are also functioning which has been established as per rules and regulation of Nepal government to help the local community.
Butwal is a major center of education in Nepal [after Kathmandu]. There are three regional campus affiliated with Tribhuvan University which are run by government.
- Butwal Bahumukhi Campus
- Lumbini Banijya Campus
- Siddhartha Gautam Buddha Campus
There are also private colleges which provides education in various fields that government campus cannot. The list is as follows:
- Sanjeevani College of Medical Sciences, Kalika Nagar
- Galaxy English Boarding High School, Murgiya.
- Butwal Kalika Campus, Kalikanagar-12
- Sky International College, Bsc IT, Msc IT, BBA, MBA (Sikkim Manipal University)
- Tinau Technical College, B.sc.CSIT (Trivuwan University)
Private colleges with two-year post-secondary programs and courses in commerce and management:
Government high schools
Private High Schools
- AMDA Hospital specializes in women and children.
- Butwal Hospital pvt ltd. - private hospital
- Crimson Hospital
- Lions Eye Hospital - Pari butwal
- Lumbini Nursing Hospital - private hospital
- Lumbini Zonal Hospital Government Hospital
- Medicare Hospital, Deep-Nagar, Butwal
- Mercy city Hospital, Butwal-8
- Tilottama Hospital, Butwal-8
Places of interest
The most historical and beautiful religious site of Nepal situated 13 kms east of Butwal is best known for the maternal home of lord Gautam Buddha. It is a place of best natural beauty and pollution free environment. Kheirani, Bhawanipur, Bairimai,Kan yamai,Khayardanda etc are the places of interest. Aap Khola' (mango river) where people go for swimming and to obtain water during droughts. There is a view of nearby Manakamana Temple.
- Butwal Hill Park (Deepnagar)
An historic place for the Gurung community. This hill used to be called Gurung Dada because Gurungs were buried here. It separates the city into 2 parts and gives views of both sides.
A fortress during Angol Nepal war, Narayan temple built by (1864 B.S.) Hanuman temple and Shivalaya of Hanumagngadhi, Jalabinayak Mehadev temple, Siddababa temple, Nuwakot etc. are famous centres of attraction in Butwal.
- Murgiya Jharbaira
About 13 km west from Butwal city. This place is known for secondary schools, rice and oil mills, temples and natural beauty. Temple of Lord Shiva (Parroha Parmeshower Bolbam Dham) is situated near by here with is internationally famous for receiving blessings from Lord of the Lord Shiva Shankar and temple of Goddess Durga at the center of town.
- Manimukunda Sen Park (Phulbari)
The winter palace of Palpali Sen clan is very fascinating from natural and archaeological values. There are ruins and antiquities of the majestic palace of Manimukunda Sen an ancient Palpali king containing 6 large rooms as well as royal residence, administrative and fascinating scenic grandeur of Butwal, Siddharthanagar and other neighbouring villages of Rupandehi district can be vividly seen from here at night also. His Majesty's Government, archaeological department has attempted to maintain it in 1991. Now Butwal municipality has formed council for the conservation of Manimukunda Sen Park to conduct Phulbari Development Programme and attempted to make it an amusing and a tourist resort.
Located about 12 km. west from Butwal and to North from Banakatti, Sainamaina as an open museum is very famous and fascinating resort from historical archaeological culture and natural points of view. Among the different Gramas villages of Shakya King, it was in the samgrama site. An Indian queen (Begum Hazrat Mahal of Awadh) because of the British disturbance in her kingdom came to this area with her soldiers and porters (‘Sena’ and Mena’) and finally this area came to be known as Saina Maina. It is an exquisite treasure trove of ancient ruins and antiquities: statues of dancing saints, ruins of palace, well etc.
It is located on hills at the border of Butwal Municipality. Devotees believe that Siddha Baba will grant their wishes and offer pigeons at the temple. On Saturdays, the weekly holiday in Nepal, large number of devotees visit this temple and special Microbus services are offered.
- The Statue of Buddha (Jogidanda)
It was very significant ruins of having the values of classical art are scattered here and there. This famous archaeological site is being occupied by homeless and landless people. Some of the antiquities of this site are seen thrown around the Lumbini museum.
- Nilkanth varni (lord shree Swaminarayan) stayed for two months in king's palace (now at manimukund garden, an old wall remains) during his "Vanvicharan".
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Butwal.|
- Barry, J.C. (July 1984), "A Review of the Siwalik hominoids", in Else, James G.; Lee, Phyllis C., Primate Evolution., Vol. 1, Nairobi, Kenya: Selected Proceedings of the Tenth Congress of the International Primatological Society, pp. 93–106, retrieved April 13, 2011
- Handa, O.C. (2002). History of Uttaranchal. New Delhi: Indus Publishing Co. pp. 170ff.
- Saugat, Om, ed. (2003). "Chapter 10: Relations with Nepal and Burma". Encyclopedic History of Indian Freedom Movement. New Delhi: saugat. pp. 280–282. Retrieved April 13, 2011.
- Butwal, Municpality. "Butwal Nagarpalika". http://www.butwalmun.org.np. Retrieved 20 October 2014.