Dhaniakhali (community development block)
ধনেখালি সমষ্টি উন্নয়ন ব্লক
|community development block|
|• Total||353.44 km2 (136.46 sq mi)|
|• Density||830/km2 (2,100/sq mi)|
|• Official||Bengali, English|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Telephone code||+91 3213|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Hooghly, Arambag|
|Vidhan Sabha constituency||Dhanekhali, Tarakeswar|
Dhaniakhali (community development block) (also spelt Dhanekhali) is an administrative division in Chinsurah subdivision of Hooghly district in the Indian state of West Bengal. Dhaniakhali police station serves this block. Headquarters of this block is at Dhaniakhali. The place has lent its name to the tant (handloom) sari it produces.
Dhanekhali is located at.
Gram panchayats of Dhaniakhali block/ panchayat samiti are: Belmuri, Bhanderhati I, Bhanderhati II, Bhastara, Dasghara I, Dasghara II, Dhaniakhali I, Dhaniakhali II, Gopinathpur I, Gopinathpur II, Gurap, Gurbari I, Gurbari II, Khajurdaha-Milki, Mandra, Parambua-Sahabazar, Somaspur I and Somaspur II,.
As per 2001 census, Dhaniakhali block had a total population of 293,305, out of which 148,265 were males and 145,040 were females. Dhaniakhali block registered a population growth of 13.86 per cent during the 1991-2001 decade. Decadal growth for Hooghly district was 15.72 per cent. Decadal growth in West Bengal was 17.84 per cent.
As per the 2001 census, Dhaniakhali block had a total literacy of 48.55 per cent. While male literacy was 68.42 per cent, female literacy was 46.07 per cent.
This is a rich agricultural area with several cold storages. Though rice is the prime crop of the district, the agricultural economy largely depends on potato, jute, vegetables, and orchard products. Vegetable is a prize crop in the blocks of Haripal, Singur, Chanditala, Polba and Dhaniakhali being grown in a relay system throughout the year. Though potato is cultivated in all the blocks of this district Dhaniakhali, Arambagh, Goghat, Pursurah, Haripal, Polba-Dadpur, Tarakeswar, Pandua and Singur contributed much of its production of this district.
Some of the primary and other hats or markets in the Dhaniakhali bloc area are at: Belmuri, Gopinagar, Hazipur, Kananadi, Bhastara, Chowghata, Sahabazar, Dashghara, and Gurap.
Pailan Group's Ascon Agro has set up a Rs 500 million potato flakes plant at Dhaniakhali. The potato plant, built on 65 acres (260,000 m2), has a capacity of 3,600 tons per annum. The project, with Export Oriented Unit-Special Economic Zone status, used machinery imported from The Netherlands and would employ 1500 people.
According to The Hindu Business Line, "The Bengal cotton sari is a fashion statement, wherever it is worn" and have a market all over the country. The Times of India says that Dhaniakhali, Shantipur and Phulia are well–known for the traditional handloom saris of West Bengal. "In Dhaniakhali block every household has at least one loom. The sari produced here is named after the place". The material for the Dhaniakhali sari is somewhat coarse and heavier than other textiles from Bengal but suits the middle class budget and as such is popular. An ordinary Dhaniakhali sari takes a minimum of two days (10–12 hours each day), to be woven, and the weaver collects Rs. 50 for it. It sells for Rs. 100 in the market. The most exotic ones take four to five days to weave, fetches the weaver Rs. 450, and is sold for Rs. 800.
The weaving of Jamdani saris originated in Dhaka in Bangladesh. Dhakai jamdani was famous among the aristocratic ladies in olden days. Places like Shantipur, Dhaniakhali, Begampur and Farasdanga started producing the jamdani saris, after the partition of India.
In earlier days Dhaniakhali also produced superfine dhotis but has switched over to saris as per changes in market demand. Now, they also want to weave material for salwar-kurtas in order to cater to the needs of the changing market.
The Times of India reports that the weavers of Dhaniakhali have been facing financial problems. More than half are members of a co-operative, Dhaniakhali Union Tant Silpi Samabaya Samity. The rest who operate through mahajans (middlemen or money-lenders) have a tough time. It is not that the saris are not selling, but the trouble is that they are not being paid in time by the state government-run emporia, who are the main buyers. It is difficult to function without cash since the raw material provided by the cooperative to the weavers cannot be bought on credit.
The road transport is also there. There are main two bus stoppage, Madan Mohan Tala Bus stop and Cinematala Bus stop. Daily road transportation occurred through 17 number bus route which connects Dhaniakhali with Chinsurah - Tarakeswar - Haripal. It also connects with National Highway No 2 (NH -2) at Maheswarpur, 8 km towards Chinsurah.
Dhaniakhali area exchange with code 3213 serves: Belmuri, Bhandarhati, Boinchi, Dasghara, Dhaniakhali, Gajinadaspur, Guptipara, Gurap, Jirat, Khejurdaha, Khannan, Kuliapara, Mahanad, Pandua, Puinan, Rameshwarpur.
Dhaniakhali panchayat samiti area had 190 primary schools, 23 secondary schools, 6 higher secondary schools and one degree college. Sarat Centenary College was established at Dhaniakhali in 1978.
Little magazine-Lipika is one of the oldest little magazines published from Somospur. Dhaniakhali Mahamaya Vidyamandir is one of the best higher secondary schools in that area. It has Science, Arts as well as Commerce stream.
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