Thursday, 8 December 2011

Durgapur, West Bengal

Durgapur is one of the well-planned industrial cities in West Bengal, situated on the banks of river Damodar. Founded in the late fifties, by the then Chief Minister of West Bengal, Dr. Bidhan Chandra Roy, the city falls under the Bardhaman district. The city has an average elevation of 65 meters and sprawls over an area of 154 sq km. It is surrounded by Asansol subdivision on the west, Bardhaman Sadar subdivision on the east, Bankura district (across Damodar River) in the south and Birbhum district (across Ajay River) to the north. Ranigunj-Dhanbad area, the biggest coalfield region in India, is also close to the Durgapur city.

There are two main water bodies in the Durgapur subdivision - River Damodar and River Ajay. While the former flows in the north, the latter directs its way in the south of the city. Two rivulets, namely Singaran and Tamla, flow through the area, joining Damodar. On the other hand, river Ajay is the point of unison of two other rivulets, Kunur and Tumuni. Talking about the topography of the area, it is an undulating one. Once a wild forested area, it has many trees evacuated from the area, for civilization purposes. However, some parts of the region are forested till today, standing tall and signifying the yester years. 

Right from being home to the mighty emperors in the former years to the present day industrialization and commercialization, Durgapur city has undergone various changes. Durgapur Steel Plant has played a prominent role in altering the face of the city. A unit of SAIL (Steel Authority of India), it brought about industrialization and employment in the city. Alloy Steels Plant, Mining and Allied Machinery Corporation, Hindustan Fertiliser Corporation, Philips Carbon Black Ltd., Sankey Wheels and Bharat Ophathalmic Glass Ltd follow later, further elevating the standard of living in Durgapur. 

Today, Durgapur has become one of the hotspot destinations in West Bengal. It offers tourist a lot of interesting sites, which makes the place worth visiting. In addition to this, the city is on the way to become an Aerotropolis, an integrated city with contemporary infrastructure for industries, logistics hub, IT, hospitality, healthcare, education, retail and residential. Just about 10 km away from Durgapur, an airport city is being built by Bengal Aerotropolis Projects Limited (BAPL). Software biggies, such as Wipro and TCS, are also moving towards Durgapur. In the coming years, the city is sure to experience a facelift.

Places to See:

Bhabani Pathak’s Tilla

Bhabani Pathak’s Tilla is great place to observe the network of tunnels in Durgapur, starting near the city center region and extending right up to the Damodar River. Today a protected monument, it first came to limelight in the novel ‘Durgesh Nandini’, by Bankim Chattopadhyay. As per the legend, unless a person had the map of the tunnel system, navigating inside was completely impossible. 

Durgapur Barrage

Durgapur Barrage is the perfect place to watch the amalgamation of nature's fury and man's effort to control it. Best visited during monsoon, the barrage is a sight to behold, with water trying to move out of the locked gates. There is also a short bridge over a canal, which is situated a few yards away from the main barrage. Walking over the bridge would surely be a riveting experience for one and all. For bird watchers, the site is nothing less than a paradise. During the wee hours of the morning, you are sure to spot lots of colorful birds here, singing harmoniously. 

Durgapur Steel Plant

One of the most important sites in Durgapur, the steel plant sprawls over a mammoth space and is the one of the awesome sights to watch out for. A SAIL (Steel Authority of India) initiative, the plant is responsible for the economic boom of the place and also played a significant role in the industrial development of the country at large. The scale of its work, coupled with the huge workforce, would keep you wondering about the management and efficiency of the place. To get a first hand experience of how things work at the plant, you need to get a permit from the administrative building, at the main entrance of the plant.

Troika Park

If you are touring Durgapur with your family and kids, Troika Park qualifies as a must-see place. A recreational spot, the park has exciting rides, apart from a toy train and a few other attractions that are sure to make the day for your kids. Adjacent to this recreational zone is a deer park. So, in case you want to have a look at the deer and even touch a few of them, head straight to Troika. Apart from this, you can also indulge in boat riding, as there is a lake near to the park. All in all, this park is the perfect place for picnic.


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