A mahalla (Arabic: محلة maḥallä, Bengali: মহল্লা Mahallā) is an Islamic congregation or parish in Bangladesh. Typically, a mahalla supports a single mosque. An imam is seen as the spiritual head of a mahalla. A mahalla is directly subordinate to a city or town, especially an electoral district, for ritual and representative purposes. Unlike Wards, it is an optional and non-elective unit of a City Corporation or Municipal Corporation. Historically, mahallas were autonomous social institutions built around familial ties and Islamic rituals. Today it is popularly recognised (also by the non-Muslim ) as a neighbourhood of mega cities and towns. Mahalle lies at the intersection of private family life and the public sphere. Important community-level management functions are performed through mahalle solidarity, such as religious ceremonies, life-cycle rituals, resource management, conflict resolution, and the like.