If you are probably looking for amazing facts about Bangladesh you have just come to the right place. Before I go deep into telling you about this amazing country, let’s first dissect the flag of Bangladesh. The flag of Bangladesh essentially has a green field and red circle that is not in the center but a little bit offset, closer to the hoist side and the reason for this is so that it looks centered when the flag is waving in the air. The green color represents the lush fertile green interior of the land of Bangladesh and the red represents the Sun.
Bangladesh has some of the most confusing territories on the planet. First of all, the country is located in Asia east of India and almost completely surrounded by India including that narrow little city Siliguri corridor or the chicken’s neck of India, a small but reasonably sized border with Myanmar in the southeast and the Bay of Bengal located to the south.
The capital of Bangladesh and its largest city is Dhaka located in the lower central region right above the Padma River and the Ganges Delta. Bangladesh is probably the second country with the most enclaves in the entire world right after India. When you hit the north of Bangladesh in the Rangpur region all hell breaks loose and suddenly you see this huge mess of territories that are sprinkled around the entire border owned and marked by each side. It gets especially messier when you go to the north of the Teesta River by the Bengali town of Patgram and see a smorgasbord of over 60 enclaves and exclaves scattered in a weird random order that makes no sense.
Many of these enclaves are first order and second order enclaves, that’s enclaves inside of enclaves and the world’s only 3rd order enclave “Dahala Khagrabari-51” a small crop field barely the size of 2 acres. This land is a piece of India within Bangladesh. The Dahala Khagrabari-51 is actually owned by a Bengali farmer who lives on the Bengali side even though the land kind of belongs to India. Most of these enclaves are farm lands that were owned by families mixed in with the area long before the borders were drawn up by the British which is why some areas don’t relent their property to the other country.
The Indian and Bangladeshi governments have announced their intentions to resolve the issues mentioned above by swapping 162 enclaves and giving residents a choice of nationality however the process isn’t really moving and is kind of stuck in a red tape limbo. Bangladesh’s land is shaped heavily by the landscape and immense river systems that flow through the entire country like vital blood streams fostering life to the entire region.
Bangladesh has to too much water. Bangladesh’s largest resource is their rivers. In fact, the Bengal Delta is the largest Delta in the world and the country has more trans boundary rivers than anywhere else. This means that they share rivers with both India and Myanmar. All together Bangladesh has about 700 main rivers the largest ones being the Padna or better known as the Ganges in India and the Jamuna or the Brahmaputra. This is actually pretty impressive considering that Bangladesh is only about half the size of the UK. However, because of all the rivers and the silt deposits, natural irrigation and land cultivation is amazing.
Bangladesh is an ecological gem! In fact, some of the most fertile soil in the world is found in Bangladesh allowing them to grow thousands upon thousands of different crops plants and orchards. One thing they’re especially known for growing is “Jute”. Jute is that stuff used in making ropes and burlap. Bangladesh is generally split up into two different separate regions. The low-lying flat Delta where most of the land is only at 10 meters or less above sea level and the small hilly plains mostly in the north northeast and southeast by Chittagong. Bangladesh has the world’s longest uninterrupted beach in the world Cox’s Bazar. This beach goes on and on for 75 miles however Bengalis would kind of refer if you didn’t check out the north part by bhatiari because it’s kind of looks a little trashy. It’s a huge ship graveyard where companies all over the world like to dispose of their old ships where the people of the region can break apart and salvage the pieces for profit.
Bangladesh is of course blessed with fertility and often villages are buried underneath mango and coconut and jackfruit trees and beautiful forests with an abundance of flora and fauna such as the Sun the Barnes the world’s largest mangrove forest which is kind of like the last place where you can find the Bengal tiger however there is one problem. Bangladesh is kind of subject to terrible tropical storms occurring almost every year and sometimes even tornadoes. On top of that during annual monsoon season the rivers get so swollen that two-thirds of Bangladesh is sixty-four districts typically experienced flooding that causes extensive property damage, loss of communications, loss of drinking water, loss of crops and this leads to the spread of disease which eventually leads to death.
Bangladesh’s people have a very unique story in that they kind of had to fight two rounds for two separate Independence’s one of them from the British and the other from Pakistan. In the shortest simplest word Bangladesh was for a long-time part of the British Empire however after the British left they separated the region into two states and three regions. The predominantly Hindu State being India and the predominantly Muslim state being West Pakistan and East Pakistan which is now known as modern-day Bangladesh. West Pakistan administered East Pakistan and the capital of that time was Karachi and was also located in West Pakistan. Despite the fact that both sides were Muslim they had very little in common both culturally and linguistically. East Pakistan eventually became furious because they felt as though they were being taken over by Pakistan and especially angry when Pakistan tried to establish Urdu as the official language as almost nobody spoke it with Bengali wide spoken.
Bangladesh gained their independence in 1971 and joined the UN. As mentioned before Bangladesh has a very dense population with a population of about 160 million people. Bangladesh is probably the most densely populated country in the world and eighth most populous. The country is predominantly Muslim and about 86% of the adherents being Sunni or Sufi Muslim and about 12% are Hindu and the remaining 2% are mostly Christian and Buddhists. Surprisingly they all get along with each other pretty well.
Bangladesh tries to maintain good ties with pretty much every country in the world and doesn’t really typically choose sides when it comes to major world powers Nepal is like a tactical friend to Bangladesh and it’s mostly based on strategic agreements. Nepal does good business and Bangladesh gives them access to the ocean. The Maldives likes to hire Bengali people for work especially with their huge tourism sector. About 40,000 Bengali workers live in the Maldives. For Sri Lanka the first King “Prince Vijaye” was said to have ancestors from Bangladesh and the Bengali Buddhist community has sent Sri Lanka a gift from what are allegedly a few strands of buddha’s hairs and are worshipped objects on Koya day of Buddhist holiday in Sri Lanka.
Myanmar has generally good relations with Bangladesh however there’s a little controversy over the Rohingya people a Muslim tribe living in the north part of Myanmar that are being attacked and persecuted by radical extremist Buddhists living in the area. Because of this, the Rohingya people have been flocking to Bangladesh as refugees which has been causing them more and more drama as an already overpopulated in relatively poor country.
The US was and still is the largest aid provider for Bangladesh and is one of the top trade partners in textiles. One thing that Bangladesh is really good at making is the tags on the back of your shirts. Bangladesh is doing so well at developing their infrastructure that they’ve decreased their aid dependency from eighty five percent in 1988 to about two percent in 2010. Bangladesh was part of the former British Empire and even though they fought for independence and didn’t like the British rule, the British culture still permeated the Bengali culture over the years and it is very evident today as can be seen with their favorite sport the cricket, they drive on the left side of the road and English is the second most commonly spoken language.
To this day despite the historical tension, the two countries get along just fine and have strong diplomatic ties. In terms of their best friends, Bangladesh more or less might consider Bhutan and India. Bhutan have two embassies in their entire country one for India and one for Bangladesh. This is kind of huge as we will soon find out in a future episode how incredibly isolated Bhutan was. Bhutan was the second country to recognize Bangladesh as a state and has decided they want to invest heavily in the country’s business.
For India it’s funny because a predominantly Hindu country defended a Muslim country from another Muslim country. Indians were the first to recognize Bangladesh as a state and supported them in the war against Pakistan however afterwards they kind of got into a few squabbles themselves. Apparently, they didn’t realize that after drawing the borders they had to share a lot with Bangladesh. Things started popping up like the enclave’s disputes and the Ganges River irrigation drama and complaints that too many Bengali people were living illegally in India. However, in the end they get along pretty well and are always there to support each other.
In conclusion, Bangladesh is blessed and cursed in so many ways yet no matter what gets thrown at them they always stay afloat when the flood comes and when it dries up, they’re ready to get right back up and plant those crops all over again.