Shantipur

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For other places with the same name, see Shantipur (disambiguation).
Shantipur
শান্তিপুর
City
Shantipur is located in West Bengal
Shantipur
Shantipur
Location in West Bengal, India
Coordinates: 23°15′N 88°26′E / 23.25°N 88.43°E / 23.25; 88.43Coordinates: 23°15′N 88°26′E / 23.25°N 88.43°E / 23.25; 88.43
Country  India
State West Bengal
District Nadia
Elevation 15 m (49 ft)
Population (2011)
 • Total 288,718
Languages
 • Official Bengali, English
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)
PIN 741404
Telephone code 03472
Lok Sabha constituency Ranaghat
Vidhan Sabha constituency Santipur

Shantipur is a city and a municipality in Nadia district in the Indian state of West Bengal. This small town has been declared a city recently. The fort area of this city, also known as Daak-Gharh (calling or gathering room) is thought to have been built by Raja Krishnachandra of Nadia.

Geography[edit]

Shantipur is located at 23°15′N 88°26′E / 23.25°N 88.43°E / 23.25; 88.43.[1] It has an average elevation of 15 metres (49 feet).

Santipur is famous for handloom sarees from ancient times. After the partition of India, many weavers came from Dhaka of Bangladesh and started to reside here in Phulia region, which is a Panchayat area of Santipur.

Demographics[edit]

In the 2011 census, Shantipur Urban Agglomeration had a population of 288,718, out of which 147,299 were males and 141,419 were females. The 0–6 years population was 24,006. Effective literacy rate for the 7+ population was 82.67 per cent.[2]

As of 2001 India census,[3] Shantipur had a population of 138,195. Males constitute 51% of the population and females 49%. Shantipur has an average literacy rate of 64%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 69%, and female literacy is 58%. In Shantipur, 12% of the population is under 6 years of age.

Economy[edit]

Since ancient times, Shantipur and the surrounding region has been famous for handloom saris (sah-ree). The handloom weaving style unique to this region are famously known as Santipuri Sari. After the partition of India, Bengal was split into two major regions. West Bengal became a part of India and East Bengal became East Pakistan (Bangladesh). Many skilled weavers from Dhaka, in current day Bangladesh, migrated into West Bengal and settled around the cities of Shantipur and Kalna (Ambika Kalna) of Bardhaman district. Both are traditionally renowned centers for producing hand-woven fabrics sold throughout the country. Through government support for Indian handicrafts and arts, the weaving community slowly grew and thrived. Saris and finely woven feather-touch textiles are still being produced in the same traditional method today. One can find the patterns and colors found in ancient times still reflected in the garments produced in the vast textile belt of Shantipur, Phulia, Samudragarh, Dhatrigram and Ambika Kalna. Each center produces superb fabrics in its own variation of the Shantipuri style of weaving. Shantipur is especially known for super-fine-weave dhotis and jacquards. These textiles are marketed through co-operatives and various commercial undertakings.[4]

Religious History[edit]

Shantipur is famous for "Rasutsav" and "Dolutsav" which is thought to have begun by Mathuresh Goswami, the great grandson of Advaita Acharya who was one of the main associates of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.[citation needed]

Procession showing Krishna
Rashyatra - celebrations of the loves of Krishna

The principle deity of the town is Radharaman in the family of Baro Gosai and Gokulchand in the family of Madhyam Gosai, descending from Mathuresh Goswami. The deity was originally installed as a single statue of krishna named 'dol govinda' in Orissa by king indradyumna. When king of Yessore (now in Bangladesh) attacked orissa he brought this deity with him to his capital. Later, in the era of Mughal emperor Akbar the Great, his general Man Singh laid a siege on Yessore/ Jessore. Pratapaditya was the reigning king at that time. The priest of the temple gave away the deity to his own guru Mathuresh goswami to protect it in time of emergency. mathuresh goswami realized the gravity of the situation and had it brought to his ancestral home Shantipur where he reinstalled it in a new temple. A deity of Radha was later installed beside dolgovinda and both of them renamed radharaman.

The deity worshipped by Advaita Acharya himself is named Madan Gopal and is worshipped in the lineage of Krishna Mishra, the second son of Advaita Acharya.[citation needed] Apart from them, there are numerous other idols and ancient temples dedicated to Radha and Krishna. On the day of Rashyatra, the main festival of the town, all of them are taken out in a grand procession around the city accompanied with drums, kirtan and other celebration. Curiously, all the thrones are lit with the age-old Belgium glass candleholders and chandeliers, instead of electric lighting, even to this day. This gives Rashotsav a very ancient and historical look. On this day, a young girl is dressed in expensive attire and gold ornaments and worshipped as Radha. After this, she is made to sit in a luxurious throne decorated with flowers and paraded across the city for the commoners to offer their respects. She is called Rai-raja. Rai is another name for Radha and Raja means king.

There is a unique form of celebrating Kali worship in the form of hand painted image of the deity known as "Poteshwari" meaning drawing of the deity on a piece of cloth. The deity is worshipped for 3 days during the "Rash Utsav." The second day of worship is marked by the sacrifice of a goat. It is then incorporated into the many festive meals and shared with the community until the festival ends. Famous Krishna Temples are : Baro Gosai,Pagla Gosai, Gokulchand(Madhyam Gosai),Madangopal,Shyamchand Mandir, Chakfera,Ataboney,Bansboney etc. '

The Poteswari Mandir at Pateswari Street in Shantipur is more than two centuries old and is maintained by the Pramanik family trust.[citation needed]. More than 14 generations of Pramaniks - a close group of the Tili subcaste, stayed here before most of the family migrated to Calcutta. Notable names from this family include Sudhamoy Pramanick. The Pramanik Badi (house) is one of the oldest standing buildings in Santipur.[citation needed]

Kali Puja is another festival that the people of this place pays a lot of dedication.Some of the Kali Murtis present here,worshiping them started 500–600 years ago.

Famous Person[edit]

Santipur has given birth numerous jewels from time to time. Some of them are Sir Azizul Haque, Pandit Laxmikant Maitra, Kabi Mohammed Mozammel Haque, Mithun Chakraborty,Durgcharan Mukarjee, Kabi Krittibas Ojha, Bijoy Krishna Goswami, Kabi Karunanidhan Bandopadhyay, Bir Ashananda Dhenki (Mukhopadhyay), Kabi Pravash Roy, Debdulal Bandopadhyay.

Transport[edit]

Shantipur is well connected by rail by EMU services running from Sealdah North section. Also well connected with North and South Bengal by various State Transport Services. Shantipur is well connected to the district Burdawan (Kalna) and the district Hoogly (Guptipara)through the river Ganges (Bhagirathi)

It is on NH 34

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Falling Rain Genomics, Inc - Santipur
  2. ^ "Urban Agglomerations/Cities having population 1 lakh and above". Provisional Population Totals, Census of India 2011. Retrieved 2011-10-21. 
  3. ^ "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01. 
  4. ^ "A Traditional Panorama - Bengal Art". Arts and Crafts in India. India Profile. Retrieved 2007-09-08.