Sandeshkhali II

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Sandeshkhali II
সন্দেশখালি-2 উন্নয়ন সমষ্টি
Community development block
Sandeshkhali II is located in West Bengal
Sandeshkhali II
Sandeshkhali II
Location in West Bengal, India
Coordinates: 22°22′N 88°54′E / 22.36°N 88.90°E / 22.36; 88.90Coordinates: 22°22′N 88°54′E / 22.36°N 88.90°E / 22.36; 88.90
Country  India
State West Bengal
District North 24-Parganas
 • Type Community development block
 • Total 197.27 km2 (76.17 sq mi)
Elevation 6 m (20 ft)
Population (2011)
 • Total 160,976
 • Density 820/km2 (2,100/sq mi)
 • Official Bengali, English
Literacy (2011)
 • Total literates 98,805 (70.96%)
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)
PIN 743446 (Sandeshkhali)
Telephone/STD code 03218
ISO 3166 code IN-WB
Vehicle registration WB-23, WB-24, WB-25, WB-26
Lok Sabha constituency Basirhat
Vidhan Sabha constituency 123-Sandeshkhali, 126-Hingalganj

The Hungry Tide
In the beginning…there was nothing but forests here. There were no people, no embankments, no fields. Just kada and bada, mud and mangrove. At high tide most of the land vanished under water. And everywhere you looked there were predators – tigers, crocodiles, sharks, leopards…This was a time when people were so desperate for the land that they were willing to sell themselves for a bigha or two.[1]

Amitav Ghosh

Sandeshkhali-II is a community development block that forms an administrative division in Basirhat subdivision of North 24 Parganas district in the Indian state of West Bengal. Sandeshkhali police station serves Sandeshkhali-I and Sandeshkhali-II blocks. Headquarters of this block is at Sandeshkhali. It is located 70 km from Barasat, the district headquarters.



Sandeshkhali is located at 22°22′N 88°54′E / 22.36°N 88.90°E / 22.36; 88.90.

Sandeshkhali II CD Block is bounded by Sandeshkhali I CD Block in the north, Hingalganj CD Block towards east, Basanti, Gosaba CD Blocks and Sundarbans in South 24 Parganas district in the south and Canning II CD Block in South 24 Parganas district in the west.[2][3]


Sandeshkhali-II CD Block has an area of 197.27 km2.[4]

Offices of Sandeshkhali-II Block are: Sandedhkhali-II BDO Office, Sandeshkhali BLRO Office, Sandeshkhali ADA Office

Physical features[edit]

The Sandeshkhali area is full of creeks and swamps in the deltaic region of southern Bengal. The wide Dansa, Kalindi and Raimangal rivers flow through the area.

North 24 Parganas district is part of the Gangetic delta, lying east of the Hooghly River. The country is flat. It is a little raised above flood level and the highest ground borders the river channels. The rivers in the district were formerly distributaries of the Ganges but their mouths have long been filled up and blocked. The area is described as a sort of a drowned land broken by swamps. Land in the north-east of the district is higher than that of the rest of the district. The sturdy peasants raise crops of rice, jute and sugarcane from the alluvial soil. There are clumps of palm and fruit trees in which village homesteads nestle. Industrial activity is concentrated in the narrow strip of land along the Hooghly River. The south-eastern part of the district gradually merges into the Sunderbans.[5] Parts of the metropolitan city of Kolkata extend over southern part of the district.


The Sundarbans is a flat lowland susceptible to the storm surges along the 260 km shoreline of the Bay of Bengal. The total expanse of Sundarbans is about 2.05 million hectares (8,000 square miles). Of this, only 0.42 million hectares (1,629 square miles or 10,43,000 acres) are under the reserve forests including about 0.19 million hectares covered by creeks and channels. The area is prone to natural calamities such as cyclones, thunderstorms with occasional hail and floods. There are more than 63,400 km of embankments but the floods caused by high tidal bores, often wash away much of the embankments, already weakened and broken by earlier cyclonic storms.[6]

In May 2009, the district was hit by high speed cyclone named Aila and subsequent rainfall which continued for two days. This created a disaster in 20 out of 22 blocks of the district. 10 out of 27 municipalities of the district were also severely affected.[6]

Six CD Blocks of North 24 Parganas are included in the Sundabans area – Hingalganj, Hasnabad, Sandeskhali I and II, Minakhan and Haora.[6]

Gram panchayats[edit]

Gram panchayats of Sandeshkhali-II Block/Panchayat Samiti are: Bermajur-I, Bermajur-II, Sandeshkhali, Jeliakhali, Durgamandop, Korakati, Monipur and Khulna.


As per 2011 Census of India Sandeshkhali II CD Block had a total population of 160,976, all of which were rural. There were 81,921 (51%) males and 79,055 (49%) females. Population below 6 years was 21,732. Scheduled Castes numbered 72,300 and Scheduled Tribes numbered 37,695.[7]

As per 2001 census, Sandeshkhali-II block has a total population of 136,247 out of which 70,114 were males and 66,133 were females. Sandeshkhali-II block registered a population growth of 14.59 per cent during the 1991-2001 decade. Decadal growth for the district was 22.40 per cent.[4] Decadal growth in West Bengal was 17.84 per cent.[8]

Large villages[edit]

Large villages in Sandeshkhali II Block (2011 census figures in brackets): Rampur (4,392), Jhupkhali (7,908), Bermajur (13,136), Dwarir Jangle (11,155), Khulna (5,958), Hatgachha (5,960), Sitalia (6,092), Atapur (5,287), Tushkhali (9,645), Bhangatushkhali (7,346), Jeliakhali (5,084), Jheliakhali Paschim Khanda (10,193), Sukhdoani (4,481), Daudpur (7,510), Joygopalpur (7,761), Korakati (6,695), Durgamandap (8,932), Dhuchnikhali (7,266) and Manipur (8,152).[7]


As per 2011 census the total number of literates in Sandeshkhali II CD Block was 98,805 (70.96% of the population over 6 years) out of which 56,205 (57%) were males and 42,600 (43%) were females.[7]

As per 2011 census, literacy in North 24 Parganas district was 84.06 (including urban areas outside the CD Blocks).[9] Literacy in West Bengal was 77.08% in 2011.[10] Literacy in India in 2011 was 74.04%.[10]

See also – List of West Bengal districts ranked by literacy rate


Bengali is the local language in these areas.[2]


Religion in Sandeshkhali II CD Block

In the 2011 census Hindus numbered 124,229 and formed 77.17% of the population in Sandeshkhali II CD Block. Muslims numbered 35,855 and formed 22.27% of the population. Others numbered 892 and formed 0.56% of the population.[11]

In 1981 Hindus numbered 76,282 and formed 81.23% of the population and Muslims numbered 17,574 and formed 18.50% of the population in Sandeshkhali I CD Block. In 1981 Hindus numbered 78,701 and formed 81.03% of the population and Muslims numbered 17,999 and formed 18.56% of the population in Sandeshkhali II CD Block. In 1991 Hindus numbered 187,572 and formed 78.34% of the population and Muslims numbered 51,862 and formed 21.66% of the population in Sandeshkhali I and Sandeshkhali II CD Blocks taken together. (In 1981 and 1991 census was conducted as per jurisdiction of the police station.)[12]

In the 2011 census, Hindus numbered 7,352,769 and formed 73.46% of the population in North 24 Parganas district. Muslims numbered 2,584,684 and formed 25.82% of the population.[11] In West Bengal Hindus numbered 64,385,546 and formed 70.53% of the population. Muslims numbered 24,654,825 and formed 27.01% of the population.[11]

Human Development Report[edit]

According to Census 2001, 54% of the population of North 24 Parganas district live in the urban areas. The district has 1,571 inhabited villages spread over 22 community development blocks. In the urban area there are 27 municipalities, 20 census towns, 7 urban outgrowths and one town under Cantonment Board. The North 24 Parganas district Human Development Report opines thati in spite of agricultural productivity in North 24 Parganas district being rather impressive 81.84% of rural population suffer from shortage of food. The number of families living below the poverty line vary widely from block to block. Even in some municipal areas, such as Baduria, Gobardanga, Taki, Basirhat, Bangaon and Habra surveys have revealed large percentage of people living in poverty. Several poverty alleviation schemes are under implementation mostly at the block level. North 24 Parganas district with a population density of 2,192 persons per square km, is third densest in West Bengal, after Kolkata and Howrah. The high density of population in the district is largely because of large scale migration of refugees from erstwhile East Pakistan, particularly in the period 1947 to 1955. In 2004, life expectancy at birth of a female was 71 years and that of a male was 66 years. With a literacy rate of 68.74% in 2001, the district was second only to Kolkata in the state in literacy. There are 6,139 habitations in the rural areas of North 24 Parganas. Out of these 2,331 habitations have primary schools within the villages and another 3,334 habitations have primary schools within 1 km. There are 474 habitations with primary schools beyond 1 km from the village. There were 258 high schools in the rural areas of the district.[13]

Sandeshkhali II CD Block had a population density of 691 persons per km2. It was ranked 21 amongst the 22 CD Blocks for density of population in 2001. It had a literacy rate of 59.31%, ranking of 20. Male literacy rate was 71.03% and female literacy rate was 46.75%. It was one of the three CD Blocks in which more than half the women were illiterate in 2001. Percentage distribution of main workers in Sandeshkhali II CD Block was cultivators 25.41, agricultural labourer 41.66, household industry worker 1.91 and other workers 31.02 (non-agricultural, non-household). 59.70% of households in this CD Block lived below poverty line.[13]

In the Sandeshkhali II CD Block none of the villages had secondary schools and for 79.17% villages a college was more than 5 km away. Sandeshkhali II had 13 high schools with 5,781 students and 384 teachers. It had 8 higher secondary schools with 4,764 students and 198 teachers.[13]

In Sandeshkhali II, one of the six CD Blocks in the Sundarban area, 20.83% of the villages had electricity for domestic use, 62.50% villages had paved approach roads, 100% villages had primary schools, 91.67% of the villages had maternity and child welfare centres, and 100% villages had drinking water. The tube well is the source of drinking water in 1,244 out of 1,572 villages in the district. In Sandeshkhali II CD Block, 17 villages had tube wells for drinking water and 7 villages had tap water. Sandeshkhali II CD Block had 27 km surfaced roads and 320 km unsurfaced roads.[13]

North 24 Parganas is one of the leading districts in the formation and development of self-help groups. In Sandeshkhali II there were 1,043 groups. The major activities done by these groups were fishery and prawn culture, goat rearing and poultry. Sandeshkhali II CD Block had 3 health centres and 35 sub-centres.[13]



The remote villages and hamlets situated in the area suffer from chronic shortage of energy due to non-availability of grid power. It is extremely difficult to extend high voltage transmission lines because of technical limitations in an area with inhospitable terrain and prohibitive cost. A scheme is being formulated to cover about 750,000 people in the difficult areas of Sundarbans with non-conventional energy power by 2012. The scheme covers Gosaba, Sagar, Pathar Pratima, Namkhana, Kultali, Hingalganj and Sandeshkhali.[14]


Microcredit is serving as an effective tool of economic emancipation of women, empowering them to fight against many social evils and the age-old atrocities in the villages. JYDC an NGO, in collaboration with National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has established 1047 self-help groups with 12,000 members spread over 24 villages (mouza). Self-help group members of Sandeshkhali raised Rs.40,000/-loan from Bank of Baroda to start a poultry farm.[15](31 March 2008, BDO, SDK-II)



Schools of Sandeshkhali-II Block are: Sandeshkhali Radharani High School (HS), Bhagabati Devi Balika Vidyalaya, Khulna P.C. Law Vidyalaya (HS), Sitalia High School (HS), Hatgachha K.C.A. High School (HS), Bouthakurani Uttam Chandra High School, Atapur Kenaram High School (HS), Doutpur H.L. Sikshaniketan (HS), D.D.T. Sahid Smriti Vidyapith.


Although in North 24 Parganas district groundwater is affected by arsenic contamination, tube wells in Sandeshkhali-II block are arsenic safe according to Indian standard (50 µg/L) and in Sandeshkhali-I block only 0.6% of tube wells exceed 50 µg/L.(study conducted by JYDC, an NGO). A lab was set up by JYDC in collaboration with UNICEF and the government of West Bengal to monitor drinking water in the area. The probable reason may be, in Sandeshkhali, most of the tube wells are deep. Shallow tub ewells are saline, so people do not construct shallow tube wells.[16] A study of iodine deficiency disorder amongst children found that prevalence of goitre amongst school children was very high at Sandeshkhali. There is a rural hospital and a primary health centre and many sub-health centre. The name of the rural hospital is Sandeshkhali Rural Hospital (Add-Khulna, Sandeshkhali), the name of the primary health centre is Korakati Primary Health Centre (Add-Korakati, Sandeshkhali). Four launches with doctors carrying medicines, sophisticated portable X-ray and echo-cardiograph machines, provided by the French author Dominique Lapierre move along the waterways of the Sundarbans to its furthest corners. Residents of such places as Sandeshkhali, Basanti, Gosaba and Kultali have felicitated him when he came in 2004.[17]


Hospitals of Sandeshkhali-II Block are: Sandeshkhali Rural Hospital, Korakati Primary Health Centre


  1. ^ Ghosh, Amitav, The Hungry Tide, p. 51, Harper Collins/India Today group
  2. ^ a b "Sandeshkhali II Block". onefivenine. Retrieved 10 March 2016. 
  3. ^ "North 24 Parganas District". Map Gallery – CD Blocks. North 24 Parganas district administration. Retrieved 10 March 2016. 
  4. ^ a b "Census of India 2001, Provisional Population Totals, West Bengal, Table - 4". North 24-Parganas District (11). Government of West Bengal. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 2010-10-25. 
  5. ^ LSS O’Malley. "Bengal District Gazetteers: 24 Parganas". p 1-4. Google Books. Retrieved 12 March 2016. 
  6. ^ a b c "District Human Development Report: North 24 Parganas" (PDF). p 250. Development & Planning Department, Government of West Bengal, 2010. Retrieved 18 March 2016. 
  7. ^ a b c "C.D. Block Wise Primary Census Abstract Data(PCA)". West Bengal – District-wise CD Blocks. Registrar General and Census Commissioner, India. Retrieved 10 March 2015. 
  8. ^ "Provisional Population Totals, West Bengal. Table 4". Census of India 2001. Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 2011-01-20. 
  9. ^ "District Census 2011". Population Census 2011. Retrieved 24 January 2016. 
  10. ^ a b "Provisional population tables and annexures" (PDF). Census 2011:Table 2(3) Literates and Literacy rates by sex. Registrar General and Census Commissioner, India. Retrieved 9 February 2016. 
  11. ^ a b c "C1 Population by Religious Community". West Bengal. Registrar General and Census Commissioner, India. Retrieved 20 July 2016. 
  12. ^ "Block Level Statistics of North 24 Parganas District" (PDF). Handbook 2004. Government of West Bengal. Retrieved 20 July 2016. 
  13. ^ a b c d e "District Human Development Report: North 24 Parganas" (PDF). Intro Pp 3, 6, 8, 22, 38, 202; Block specific Pp 20, 22, 27, 28, 31, 86, 89, 123, 145, 151, 189. Development & Planning Department, Government of West Bengal, 2010. Retrieved 18 March 2016. 
  14. ^ "Electrification of Sundarbans through non-conventional energy sources". WBREDA. Retrieved 2007-09-22. 
  15. ^ Bhattacharya, Ravik. "Micro credit tool for women's empowerment". Micr credit for poultry farming. Retrieved 2007-09-22. 
  16. ^ "Groundwater Arsenic contamination in West Bengal-India (19 years study )". Groundwater arsenic contamination status of North 24-Parganas district, one of the nine arsenic affected districts of West Bengal-India. SOES. Retrieved 2007-08-24. 
  17. ^ "Sundarbans gratitude to Lapierre". The Telegraph, 30 November 2004. Retrieved 2007-09-22.