Jaigaon from the Gumba hill
|• Official||Nepali, Bengali, English|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Alipurduars (ST)|
|Vidhan Sabha constituency||Kalchini (ST)|
Jaigaon (Bengali: জয়গাওঁ) is a small town in Jalpaiguri district in the Indian state of West Bengal, near the Bhutan border. The town lies at the gateway to Bhutan – Phuntsholing, and is thus a very thriving place of trade. The main source of income for the vast majority of people here is through the Bhutanese citizens that come down to Jaigaon in order to buy their monthly and weekly ration.
The main entrance to Bhutan is through Jaigaon. As Bhutan is a Himalayan Kingdom, it does not have roads linking to all its towns. Thus, Bhutan uses Indian roads to reach some of its cities, namely Samtse, Gomtu and Samdrup Jongkhar. Bagdogra Airport (Siliguri) is the nearest airport, and Kolkata its nearest port, where goods to Bhutan are brought to. India offers a free flow of goods from Kolkata port to Bhutan.
Being a border town Jaigaon has a secular population. People from all parts of the country have settled here in search of jobs or to conduct business. The major population consists of people from Bengali, Bihari, Marwari and Nepali backgrounds. Many of the scheduled tribes of the country reside in the lower part of the city commonly called Mechia Basti. The TOTOS, the most preserved tribe of India, reside on the other side of the River Torsha (also spelled Torsa) beneath the mighty Himalayas. Though this area doesn't form part of the city it is a close neighbor of Jaigaon. Though the area is quite peaceful, some political uprisings in the Dooars in recent years have added to the discontent of the local people. Strikes and political rallies affect the daily work schedule of the common masses.
The weather of Jaigaon is pleasant and has a Mediterranean type of climate. The place gets a bounty of rainfall all throughout the year irrespective of the general climate pattern of the country.
Jaigaon is located at .
As of 2007[update] India census, Jaigaon had a population of 1,58,664.[not in citation given] Males constitute 52% of the population and females 48%. Jaigaon has an average literacy rate of 90%, much higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 90%, and female literacy is 90%. In Jaigaon, 16% of the population is under 6 years of age. On the whole it is a developing place. Jaigaon is a densely populated town, with Nepali-speaking majority.
Schools of Jaigaon have always provided decent learning facilities to students. Regional students and students from Phuntsholing, a city in Bhutan come to study in Jaigaon. There has been a decent growth in the number of schools. Shri Hanuman Mandir Dharamsala School, St. John's, B.D Memorial and Sunrise School are some of the notable schools in Jaigaon. As the only college in Jaigaon caters to Humanities(Arts) stream, students from the surrounding towns also come here to pursue their studies. Most of the students from Jaigaon move to Kolkata And Siliguri for higher studies. Some students have achieved high excellence in engineering careers. After class 10 students relocate temporarily in favour of coaching hubs of the country like at Kota, Delhi, Hyderabad and Vizag to get trained and earn high academic excellence.
Jaigaon lacks in medical facilities. There are no hospital to cater the patients and if any medical emergency occurs then the patient are to taken to Alipurduar, Coochbehar or Siliguri which are far away from Jaigaon. Due to such medical problems, the people of Jaigaon prefer to settle down at Siliguri.
The Mamata Banerjee government has already identified 10 areas to develop as smart cities. Jaigaon is among them.
Jaigaon has a huge human resource with skilled labour but due to the lack of industries in Jaigaon most of them are unemployed and depend on temporary employment provided by the neighbouring Bhutanese town of Phuntsholing. Due to lack of proper and long time employment most of the people in Jaigaon are poor except the business class and government employees. Most of the people of Jaigaon are simple and very hard working with very low wages.
- District-wise list of statutory towns
- "Yahoo maps location of Jaigaon". Yahoo maps. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
- "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.
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