South-east sides of Comilla City (Kandirpar)
|City corporation||10 July 2011|
|• Body||Comilla City Corporation|
|• City Mayor||Monirul Haque Sakku|
|• Total||153 km2 (59 sq mi)|
|Time zone||BST (UTC+6)|
Comilla (Bengali: কুমিল্লা) is a city in eastern Bangladesh, located along the Dhaka-Chittagong Highway. It is the administrative center of the Comilla District, part of the Chittagong Division. Comilla is second-largest city of eastern Bangladesh after Chittagong and is one of the three oldest cities in Bangladesh.
The Comilla region was once under ancient Samatata and was joined with Tripura State. This district came under the reign of the kings of the Harikela in the ninth century AD. Lalmai Mainamati was ruled by Deva dynasty (eighth century AD), and (during tenth and mid-eleventh century AD). In 1732, it became the center of the Bengal-backed domain of Jagat Manikya.
The Peasants Movement against the king of Tripura in 1764, which originally formed under the leadership of Shamsher Gazi is a notable historical event in Comilla. It came under the rule of East India Company in 1765. This district was established as Tripura district in 1790. It was renamed Comilla in 1960. Chandpur and Brahmanbaria subdivisions of this district were transformed into districts in 1984.
Communal tension spread over Comilla when a Muslim was shot in the town during the partition of Bengal in 1905. On 21 November 1921, Kazi Nazrul Islam composed patriotic songs and tried to awaken the town people by protesting the Prince of Wales's visit to India. During this time, Avay Ashram, as a revolutionary institution, played a significant role. Poet Rabindranath Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi visited Comilla at that time. In 1931, approximately 4000 peasants in Mohini village in Chauddagram Upazilla revolted against a land revenue tax. The British Gurkha soldiers fired indiscriminately on the crowd, killing four people. In a major peasant gathering, the police fired at Hasnabad of Laksham Upazila in 1932. Two people were killed and many were wounded.
Comilla Cantonment is one of most important military bases and is the oldest in East Bengal. It was widely used by the British Indian Army during World War II. It was the headquarters of the British 14th Army. There is a war cemetery, Maynamati War Cemetery, in Comilla that was established after the World War II to remember the Allied soldiers who died during World War I and II, mostly from Commonwealth states and the United States. There are a number of Japanese soldiers were buried there as well.
Geography and climate
Comilla covers a total area of 153 square kilometers. It is bounded by Burchiganj and Tripura on the north, Laksham and Chauddagram on the south, and Barura on the west. The major rivers that pass through Comilla include Gumti and Little Feni. The Tropic of Cancer crosses Comilla town on the south side just over the Thomson Bridge.
Economy and transport
Comilla has a number of tourist attractions. Various archaeological relics discovered in the district, especially from the 7th-8th century, are now preserved in the Mainamati Museum, Mainamati being a famous Buddhist archaeological site. There is a World War II war cemetery in Comilla, which is protected and maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
There are a number of locally published newspapers in Comilla including Comilla Barta, Bangladesh Sangbad Natun Alo and Kathak. Comilla is a hub of road communication of eastern part of Bangladesh. One of the oldest highways of the Indian Sub-continent, 'The Grand Trunk Road' passes through the city. At present, the most important Dhaka-Chittagong highway bypasses the city from the cantonment to Poduar Bazar. Comilla is located 97 kilometers from the capital city, Dhaka, which can be reached by road or railway.
Comilla contains Comilla University, Comilla Medical College, Comilla Cadet College, Comilla Zilla School, Comilla High School and Ispahani Public School and College. The Comilla Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education is located in Comilla. This is the central administration that conducts primary, secondary, and higher secondary education for several districts. Institutions for cultural heritage in Comilla include the Ramamālā Library.
- Bidhas Kanti Kilikhar. Tripura of the 18th Century with Samsher Gazi Against Feudalism: A Historical Study. (Chhapa Kathi, Agartula: Tripura State Tribal Cultural Research Institute and Museum, 1995) p. 55
- Banglapedia: national encyclopedia of Bangladesh. Asiatic Society of Bangladesh. 2003. ISBN 978-984-32-0578-0. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
- Whitaker's Cumulative Book List. J. Whitaker. 1961. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
- Huntington, Susan L. (1984). The "Påala-Sena" Schools of Sculpture. Brill Archive. p. 26. ISBN 978-90-04-06856-8. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
- Leung, Mikey; Meggitt, Belinda (2012). Bangladesh. Bradt Travel Guides. p. 274. ISBN 978-1-84162-409-9. Retrieved 27 April 2013.