Dhaka: the 2012 Capital of Islamic Culture for the Asian region


Dhaka (Dacca) is the capital city and the industrial, commercial and administrative center of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, with flourishing trade in cotton saris, jute products, rope, string, baskets and boats.


Dhaka is located on a channel of the Dhaleswari River, in the heart of the world’s largest jute-growing region. Between Dhaka and its nearby river port of Narayanganj lies Bangladesh’s greatest industrial concentration.

Dhaka’s location

The city is divided into three distinct sections:

An old area of narrow streets and bazaars.

A modern part, called Ramna, with government, tourist, and cultural facilities.

A residential and industrial community north and west of Ramna.

Dhaka’s history dates back to around A.D. 1,000, but the city achieved glory as the 17th -century Mughal capital of Bengal. English, French, and Dutch industrialists set up factories there in the 17th and 18th centuries, and Dhaka passed under British rule in 1765. After the partition of British India, and the independence of Pakistan, in 1947, Dhaka became the administrative capital of East Pakistan, and later, in December 1971, the capital of Bangladesh (formerly East Pakistan).

Bayt ul-Mukarram mosque (founded in Dhaka in 1962)

Islamic Heritage in Dhaka:

Star Mosque, locally known as Tara Masjid , is a mosque located in Dhaka, Bangladesh. It is situated at the Armanitola area of the old part of the city. The mosque has ornate designs and is decorated with motifs of blue stars. It was built in the first half of the 19th century.
Built in the Mughal style in the late 18th century, this mosque was originally a simple rectangular mosque, measuring 33′ x 11′ with three doorways on the east façade (main façade) and one on the north wall and another on the south wall. Three domes crowned the mosque, the central one being the larger. Towers accented the corners and the façades displayed plastered panel decoration.
In early 20th century, a local businessman, financed the renovation of the mosque and added a new eastern verandah. The surface was redecorated with Chinitikri work (mosaic work of broken China porcelain pieces), a decorative style that was popular during the 1930s. The mosque, which previously lacked any historical significance, is one of the few remaining architectural example of the Chinitikri (Chinese pieces) method of mosaic decoration. This decorative technique is found in the striking star motif that is in part the reason for the mosque’s current acclaim and popular name, Star Mosque or Sitara Masjid.
In 1987, the Ministry of Religious Affairs to make additions to the prayer hall, which was extended to include two more domes.

Lalbagh Fort In Dhaka

The fort of Aurangabad, popularly known as the Lalbagh Fort, was built in 1678 AD. The fort has a three storied structure with slender minarets at the South Gate. It has many hidden passages and a mosque of massive structure. Outstanding among the monuments of the Lalbagh Fort are the Tomb and Audience room and Hummam (bathing place), now housing a museum.
The fort was the scene of bloody battle during the first war of independence (1857) when 260 spays stationed here backed by the people revolted against British forces. It is one of the great historical places of Mughal era.
A small museum is there in this fort where you will find the clothes and weapons of the Mughols.
The capital city Dhaka predominantly was a city of the Mughals. In hundred years of their vigorous rule successive Governors and princely Viceroys who ruled the province, adorned it with many noble monuments in the shape of magnificent places, mosques, tombs, fortifications and ‘Katras’ often surrounded with beautifully laid out gardens and pavilions.
Among these, few have survived the ravages of time, aggressive tropical climate of the land and vandal hands of man. But the finest specimen of this period is the Aurangabad Fort [commonly known as Lalbagh Fort], which indeed represents the unfulfilled dream of a Mughal Prince. It occupies the southwestern part of the old city, overlooking the Buriganga on whose northern bank it stands as a silent sentinel of the old city. Rectangular in plan, it encloses an area of 1082′ by 800′ and in addition to its graceful lofty gateways on southeast and northeast corners and a subsidiary small unpretentious gateway on north, it also contains within its fortified perimeter a number of splendid monuments, surrounded by attractive garden. These are a small 3-domed mosque, the mausoleum and the Hammam and Audience Hall of the Governor.
The main purpose of this fort was to provide a defensive enclosure of the palatial edifices of the interior and as such was a type of palace-fortress rather than a siege fort.

Ahsan Manzil in Dhaka

Ahsan Manzil was the official residential palace and seat of the Dhaka Nawab Family. This magnificent building is situated at Kumartoli along the banks of the Buriganga River in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
The construction of this palace was started in the year 1859 and was completed in 1869. It is constructed in the Indo-Saracenic Revival architecture.
To preserve the cultural and history of the area, the palace became the Bangladesh National Museum on 20 September 1992.