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Dhaka History, Bangladesh

It was the urbanized settlements found in Dhaka area during the 7th century that marks the start of the history of Dhaka. This was when the city was ruled by the Buddhist kingdom of Kamarupa, before getting passed to the Sena dynasty control in the 9th century.

It is stated that the name of the city was derived with the establishment of the Goddess Dhakeshwari temple by Raja Ballal Sena in the 12th century. This was when the present Dhaka area was referred to as Bengalla.

The town then consisted of a few market centers like Shankhari Bazar, Lakshmi Bazar and a few localities of craftsmen and businessmen like Goal Nagar and Patuatuli. With the end of the Sena dynasty, Dhaka was ruled successfully by Turkish and Afghan governors who had descended from the Delhi Sultanate, before the arrival of the Mughals in 1608.

Dhaka was proclaimed capital by Mughals

It is said that townships, public works and growth in population took place under the Mughal rule, with the proclamation of Dhaka as the capital of Bengal. The city was then called Jahangir Nagar, after the Mughal emperor, Jahangir.

The city grew the most under the Mughal general, Shaista Khan while it passed into the control of the British East India Company after the Battle of Plassey in 1765. This war was responsible for dramatically reducing the city’s population in a short span of time.

It was under British rule when Dhaka saw the inception of modern educational institutions, townships and public works. It was however with the partition of Bengal in 1905 and 1946 that Dhaka became the capital of East Bengal.

And it was on August 15, 1947 that East Bengal became a part of the Muslim state of Pakistan. This was when Dhaka witnessed communal violence, leading to bloodshed and the death of thousands of people.

Independence did not quench the thirst of people of Dhaka

Though independent, the people of Dhaka were plagued by political turmoil with Pakistan Army operations killing or displacing millions of people. This led to the state finding it difficult to cope with humanitarian challenges. With the killing of Sheikh Mujib and military coups, military rule was established in Dhaka.

However political disorder reached its heights in mid 1980s with the Awami League and Bangladesh Nationalist Party taking lead through political and student strikes and protests. This thus led to the disruption of the lives of the people of Dhaka.

Despite all this, the history of Dhaka shows that its post independence period has experienced great growth in population, with the migration of workers. New settlements like Gulshan and Motijheel has led to a real estate boom and the present city of Dhaka.

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Dhaka City Ratings

  • Rating53%
    City Rank321
  • History & Culture: rated for 100%
  • Night Life & Entertainment: rated for 30%
  • Family & Fun: rated for 50%
  • Outdoors Activities: rated for 33%
  • Food: rated for 83%
  • Sightseeing: rated for 43%
  • Shopping: rated for 80%
  • Public Transportation: rated for 20%
  • Must visit this place: rated for 10%
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