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Jhapa District Map
|Region||Eastern (Purwanchal), Terai.|
|• Total||1,606 km2 (620 sq mi)|
|Elevation(maximum)||506 m (1,660 ft)|
|• Density||510/km2 (1,300/sq mi)|
|Time zone||NPT (UTC+5:45)|
Jhapa District (Nepali: झापा जिल्ला Listen (help·info)) is in Terai-Mechi Zone in Nepal's Eastern Development Region. The district covers 1,606 km2 (620 sq mi). The 2011 census counted 812,650 population. Bhadrapur is the district headquarters.
Jhapa is the easternmost district of Nepal and lies in the fertile Terai plains. It borders Ilam district in the north, Morang district in the west, the Indian state of Bihar in the south and east, and the Indian state of West Bengal in the east.
Jhapa observes moderate climate complexion as it lies in the Indo-gangetic plain and Churia low hills. Though due to close proximity to the lower Himalaya, weather is calm throughout the year. Seasonal monsoon is well distributed across the district. The temperature is highest during May through September, though winter is not extreme, keeping aside fogging during morning. Climatic variation is not extreme; however, the southern parts of districts are warmer than the northern ones.
The district is divided into 37 Village Development Committees (VDC) and 7 municipalities which are as follows.
- Bhadrapur Municipality
- Birtamode Municipality
- Damak Municipality
- Kankai Municipality
- Mechinagar Municipality
- Shani-Arjun Municipality
- Shivasatakshi Municipality
- Gauradaha Municipality
Village Development Committees (VDCs)
Not much is known about Jhapa's early settlements. A few scattered and small villages used to be in the vast and dense forest area. In the 1960s and early '70s the landscape of Jhapa began to change as people from the hills came there to own and cultivate the land under the 'resettlement program'.
The eradication of malaria helped change its old name and perception of 'Kalapani' (its former name) into an attractive and fertile place. Fertile land, beautiful landscape, proximity to Nepali-speaking part of India, attracted many people there for settlement. No indigenous ethnicities are known to have settled there. Small numbers of Rajbanshi and Maithali people and some other even smaller groups were found to have lived there before the mass migration from the country and the northeastern part of India and Burma.
Jhapa is home to many indigenous ethnic nationalities such as the Rajbanshi, Maithali, Limbu, Bengali, Gangai and Dhimal. Other ethnic groups such as Dhangad, Santhal, Tamang, Uraon, Magar, Gurung, Sunuwar/सुऩुवाऱ/मुखीय, and many others came to Jhapa in the late 19th century, as did the hill/mountain castes Bahun, Chhettri, and Newar.
Jhapa is diverse and rich in culture and traditions due to the influences of its tribes. All the tribes/ethnic groups have their own languages, customs, and traditions. They celebrate their festivals every year.
Geography and climate
|Climate Zone||Elevation Range||% of Area|
|Lower Tropical||below 300 meters (1,000 ft)||98.8%|
|Upper Tropical||300 to 1,000 meters
1,000 to 3,300 ft.
Jhapa receives 250 to 300 cm of rainfall a year, mostly during the summer monsoon season. Its hilly northern area receives more rainfall than the south. Its major rivers, like the Mechi, Kankai Mai, Ratuwa, Biring, Deuniya,(Aduwa), (Bhuteni), (Dhangri), Hadiya, Ninda, Krishne Khola, Gauriya, Ramchandre etc. provide water for irrigation.
Due to its alluvial soil best suited for agriculture, Jhapa has been the largest producer of rice and is therefore known as the Grain Grocery of Nepal. Besides cereal crops like rice and wheat, it is one of the largest producers of jute, tea, betel nut, rubber, and other cash crops.
Jhapa has vast areas of forests, such as Deonia, Charali, Charkose Jhaadi, Hadiya, Sukhani, Jalthal, and others. Its name itself is derived from the Rajbanshi word "jhapa" meaning "canopy", which suggests that the area had a dense forest in the past. It was once such a dense and dangerous forest that it was called Kaalapaani and prisoners were sent here to die of malaria and other diseases in the jungle.
Attractions and sites
Jhapa has several religious and historical sites of great importance like Kankai Mai, Kichakbadh, Satasidham, Arjundhara, Chillagadh, Biratpokhar, and Krishnathumki among others. It is believed that Pandu's son Bhim killed Kichak in Kichakbadh (near Kechana in the south border) in the time of the Mahabharata and a great festival is observed on that day every year. There is also the historic fort of Chandragadh which gave its name to Chandragadhi. Other sites, too, have their religious and historical values.
It is the gateway to Darjeeling and Sikkim and the rest of northeast India from Nepal. Arable land and majestic tea gardens manufacturing the fastest and largest tea contribution in Nepal have added beauty in the lap of uprising hills; paddy production and coconuts are also significant in this Jhapa.
Recently, Jhapa is gaining popularity in the medical field especially in eye treatment. Each day hundreds of patient from adjoining districts of Nepal and neighbouring India visit Mechi Eye Hospital for treatment.
The other major centers of attractions are Jhamunkhadi Simsar Tourism Area in Surunga and Domukha as well.
Jhapa is one of the most developed districts of the country. Almost all the villages and towns are linked by roads, facilitated with drinking water, electricity, health centers, schools. There are schools and colleges in virtually all parts of the district. There is the [Chandragadhi Airport] and a zonal hospital in Bhadrapur. It has the highest literacy rate in the country after Kathmandu, Kaski and Chitwan districts.
The airport is domestic and you can get several regular flights between Kathmandu and Bhadrapur daily. It takes 45 minutes by air.
There is a hundred bedded Zonal hospital. It has different departments as Medicine, Surgery, Gynaecology & obstetrics, Paediatrics, and the 24 hours emergency facilities. AMDA Hospital Damak,established in 1992 as AMDA referral center of 15-bed capacity with the help of AMDA International, and Damak Municipality. There are some private hospitals like Life Line Hospital,Damak, Mechi Model Hospital, Kanchunga Hospital, Pathivara Hospital & Research Center Pvt.Ltd.Birtamod etc.It also has Mechi eye Hospital which is supposed to be one of the biggest eye hospital in Nepal.
The government hospital provides plastic surgery services occasionally.
Jhapa has a literacy rate of 77.7%.
Chulla Chulli English Boarding School, Emerald Academy, Birat Jyoti English Boarding Higher Secondary School, Siddhartha Sishu Sadan and Little Flowers School are some of the best in the country. There are some good private schools like East Horizon English School, Bal Kalyan Boarding Secondary School, Shree Harikul Model Higher Secondary School (+2), Suryodaya English School, Siddhartha Boarding School, Newtons Education Academy, Shree Pashupati Secondary School, Balmiki Academy, Gyanjyoti Higher Secondary School, Dipjan English Boarding School, Divya Jyoti Secondary School, Purwanchal Academy, etc.
The number of colleges providing higher studies has been increasing in Jhapa. Mechi Multiple Campus Bhadrapur and Damak Multiple Campus are the wings of Tribhuvan University. Kankai Adarsh Campus Birtamode Gomendra Multiple College Birtamode, College for Higher Education (COHED) and Kanakai Multiple Campus Surunga are the other main colleges providing higher education up to Master's degree in Management, Education and Humanities stream. Mechi Multiple Campus is one of the most known campuses in Jhapa that provides better education qualities. It provide education in faculties like Science, Management and Humanities. There is a government school providing quality education to students in English. Shree Kanakai Higher Secondary School is the school serving since 2015 BS.
Role in national politics
It plays the main role in national politics. The Communist revolution was started from the Jhapa, which led to formation of one the most prominent party and largest communist party of Nepal: CPN-UML. Many national political figures are from Jhapa such as C.K. Prasai (Bharat Babu), R.K Mainali, Pukar Bhandari, K.P Oli, Krishna Prasad Sitaula, Chakra Bastola, and Chandra Prakash Mainali.
During Jana Andolan 2063 (April Revolution) Jhapa played a significant role in the agitation against Royal takeover. Around 5 people were killed by the Royal Army in Bhadrapur, and many more deaths weren't disclosed. Moreover, Jhapa is recognized as the site of intelligence across the country, and major political agendas are guided by Jhapali leaders. The inception of movements and awareness could be observed in Jhapa first and disseminated elsewhere. Its role in bureaucracy, policy making, legislation, innovation and science and technology would nevertheless be underestimated.
Agriculture and industry
Jhapa is famous for microcredit development. The Small Farmer Development Programme (SFDP) was the first rural and micro-financing program in Jhapa. The Agricultural Development Bank started this SFDP in 1988. It started in a few VDCs and spread. After lifting many people out of poverty, the SFDP was handed over to the local people and the new institution was named Small Farmer Cooperative Ltd (SFCL). There are 13 SFCLs in Jhapa, each of which covers a single VDC.
It is one of the major districts for the production of tea and rice. Budhabare is on the northern side of the Mahendra Highway and is one of the most fertile lands of Nepal. Jhapa as a district is popular for the bittle nuts (Supari). Several large tea estate are in Jhapa. Giri Bandhu Tea Estate, Burne Tea State, Tokla Tea Estate, Himalaya Tea State, Damak, Sattighatta Tea Estate are the major ones.
Jhapa has different sorts of communication medium. The internet provided by ISPs link Jhapa with the rest of the world.
- Household and population by districts, Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) Nepal
- The Map of Potential Vegetation of Nepal - a forestry/agroecological/biodiversity classification system (PDF), . Forest & Landscape Development and Environment Series 2-2005 and CFC-TIS Document Series No.110., 2005, ISBN 87-7803-210-9, retrieved Nov 22, 2013
- "Census 2001". Census. central bureau of statistics, Nepal. 2001. Retrieved 2008-08-24.
- Emerald Academy
- Districts of Nepal at statoids.com