Nijer shohor Nijer Baari – Bogra
A place far from the maddening crowd, draped in all the glory of a bygone era. A city that dates back to the Great Emperor Ashoka's regime in India. Relics of the past still scattered here and there. Little signs of a forgotten civilization still etched in burnt brick walls, stupas &maths. A city that truly celebrates the elegance of history with its renowned sweetmeats and mishit doi. Formerly known as PundraBardhan of greater Bengal, the city of Bogra is the perfect juxtaposition of grace from the past and bliss from the present.
Bogra is arguably the oldest city of Bengal in the Great Emperor Ashoka's India. Emperor Ashoka conquered the then Bongo (Bengal) and founded Bogra, as an emblem to his successful conquest. Possibly confirming this origin story, an ancient engraved stone believed to be of Gupta era was discovered on a pond bank near Sura Masjid at GhoraghatUpazila in Dinajpur in October 2008. As the new civilization waddled their way into shaping the new capital of Bengal, they enriched the city with few of the earliest urban archaeological sites to be discovered in Bangladesh. As a result, Bogra is now one of the most major tourist attractions of the country. Mahasthanghar, probably the most famous of them all is not very far from the city itself. The village Mahasthan in Shibganj thana of Bogra District contains the remains of an ancient city which was called Pundranagara in the territory of Pundravardhana. A limestone slab bearing six lines in Prakrit in Brahmi script, discovered in 1931, dates Mahasthangarh to at least the 3rd century BC. The rough red land opulent with relics and memories can still evoke warmth of a bygone era. Apart from Mahasthanghar, there are plenty to explore in Paharpur,GokulMedh,ZeotKundu, all amazingly close to the city. There is a funny story about ZeotKundu. Locals believe that if anyone, injured from a war, drinks water from that well, he/she will get cured instantly!
The best thing about Bogra has to be its convenient transportation system. When other major cities are just about to dip their toe in the holy pool of urbanization, Bogra is already well developed thanks to a holistic urban planning undertaken in 2009. There has been a significant development in the infrastructure of the city in restructured and widened town roads, improved telecommunications, and the instillation of underground gas connections. Moreover, the city is already a home to many established businesses and ventures. Already dubbed as a city of banks, the city is booming with possibilities from recent outburst of IT, software, technology and computer services companies.
However, writing anything about Bogra without mentioning its famous MishtiDoiand local cuisine would be a crime. The sweetness of the local dessert is omnipresent in the spirit of every local; that’s for certain. All in all, the idyllic city seems the perfect location to relish the aura from the past and still be very present in the present!