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Nagaon
Nagaon
Location of Nagaon
in Assam and India
Coordinates 26°21′01″N 92°40′47″E / 26.3503828°N 92.6795912°E / 26.3503828; 92.6795912
Country  India
State Assam
District(s) Nagaon
Population 565,200 (2009)
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)
Website nagaon.gov.in

Nagaon Assamese নগাঁও, is a medium sized city and a municipal board in Nagaon district in the Indian state of Assam. It is one of the fastest growing cities of the northeast.

Contents

History of Nagaon

Nagaon, earlier spelt as "Nowgong" was carved out as a separate district administrative unit in 1832. Located in Central Assam, the eastern, western and southern segments of the newly organised district were once ruled by different small-time feudal kings or their agents. An extensive and undulating plain intersected by big and small hills and rivers - the geography of the segments determined who their masters ought to be. The residual effects of the rule of the Bara Bhuyans were imaginatively utilised and reorganised by Momai Tamuli Borphukan, an intrepid officer of the Ahom King Pratap Singha in the first half of the seventeenth century. This area, until then, was more of strategic than administrative concern. Since this was a newly organised village system, hence it is called "Nagaon" ('Na' meaning "new" and 'gaon' meaning "village").

At the social level, a great majority of the people were the Vaishnavites. Sankardeva, the great saint of the Bhakti movement era was born at Bordowa, at a distance of fifteen kilometres from the district geadquarters town. His life and work had been social exemplifiers and his influence can be felt even in the remotest part of the district.

The thickly populated parts of the district were the chosen targets of violence and term during the Burmese rule. In the absence of any leadership to the resistance movement against the Burmese, the people heaved a sigh of relief when the British came down heavily on the Burmese and compelled them to withdraw from Assam. Following the Treaty of Yandaboo in 1826, this central area of the province passed off silently into the hands of the British. It took a couple of years before the British finally settled on the present site on the bank of the Kollong river as the district headquarters. Earlier, they experimented from Puranigudam and Rangagora. The district headquarters was called Nagaon and gradually it emerged into a town. It became a municipality in 1893. Nagaon follows the pattern of any other district of the Lower Provinces east of the Ganga. It is basically a rural conglomerate of agricultural population.

Conscious of its strategic location, the administration of the district was always entrusted to officers of extraordinary merit. A local peasant uprising at Phulaguri in 1861 against governments taxation policy was enough of an indication that the peasantry was not altogether a stolid and docile lot. The peasantry was also an active participant in the various stages of the national struggle for freedom. The national leaders, M.K Gandhi, Rajendra Prasad and Pandit Nehru were impressed by their spirit and enthusiasm.

The entire credit of introduction of modern education in the district goes to the Christian Missionaries. Of them American missionaries, Miles Bronson and Nathan Brown are worth mentioning. The apostle of the new age Anandaram Dhekial Phukan spent the best part of his life at Nagaon. His spiritual successor Gunabhiram Barua also worked in Nagaon for about two decades.

Nagaon district comprised the present Nagaon and Morigaon districts until 1989, when the Morigaon district was separated as a distinct district; which was a subdivision (Mahkuma) till then. The then Nagaon district had three subdivisions: Nagaon, Morigaon and Hojai. Later, the present Nagaon district was again divided into three subdivisions: Nagaon, Kaliabor and Hojai.

Geography

The river Kolong, a tributary of the mighty Brahmaputra, flows through Nagaon and in the process divides the town into two distinct regions - Nagaon and Haibargaon. The railway station in Nagaon is located in Haiborgaon.

Boundary of the district: North is bounded by Sonitpur district and the Brahmaputra river, south is bounded by West Karbi Anglong and North Cachar Hills, East is bounded by East Karbi Anglong and Golaghat district. Area of the district 4435.3 sq km.

Total Population 1893171 (1991) persons Rural 1687449 (1991) Urban 205722 (1991)

Extension 250-45' to 260 -45' North Latitude 920 -33' -6" East

Major rivers : The Brahmaputra, Kalong, Sonai, Nanoi, Jamuna, Kopili and Barpani.

Beels and lakes and marshy lands : There are several beels, marshy lands and swamps are there, these are in reality old abandone channels of Kalong and Kopili rivers of Nagaon district. These are Marikalong, Potakalong,/ Haribhanga, Jongalbalahu, Samoguri beel, Urigadang and Nawbhanga. These beels are major unused resources of the district. There are nearly more than two hundred numerous marshy land exist here which should be used for development of the area.

The district looks like a broken dish north is up land South is also up land west is slop other half dish is in Marigaon district, Geomorphologically Marigaon and Nagaon makes a perfect Geomorphological area. The general slope of the district is towards the west from any place. East, North East and South East is hilly terrain.

Education

Nagaon has the oldest school in Assam, Nagaon Mission High School, established by the christian missionary Miles Bronson way back in 1846. It also has the third oldest government school in Assam, Nagaon Govt Boys HS School, established in 1865. At present, there are 25[1] colleges, of which probably the most renowned is the Nowgong College, located at the heart of the town. Others are: Nagaon G.N.D.G. Commerce College, A.D.P. College (Named after Anandaram Dhekial Phukan), Nagaon Law College, Nagaon Girls' College etc. The College of Fishery Sciences (the only one of its kind in northeastern India, located in Raha, comes under the academic management of Assam Agricultural University [1], Jorhat. Nagaon also has a Homeopathic Medical College. Nowgong Polytechnic is one of the oldest technical education institutes in Assam.

Sports

The stadium in Nagaon is named after the late Nurul Amin. It hosts the prestigious Independence Day Cup Football tournament every year in Aug-Sep in which most of the teams of national repute participate.

Transport

Nagaon is well connected by road links. The National Highway No. 36 and No. 37 provide easy access to important places of Nagaon District. It is in fact junction point of NH 36 and NH 37

Road Distance from Guwahati to Nagaon Town = 123 km.

Railway Station = Haiborgaon Nearest Railway Junction is at Chaparmukh which is around 28 km from Nagaon Town.

Nearest Airport = Lokapriya Gopinath Bordoloi Airport at Borjhar (Guwahati).

Economy

SHOPPING PLACES : The main shopping areas in Nagaon are Daccapatty, Marwaripatty, Stadium market and Mission Market. But new market places are developing in the Haibargaon area. The main market places in Nagaon are Bara Bazar, Natun Bazar and Haibargaon Bazar.

AGRICULTURE

In terms of natural resources endowment, the economy is purely agrarian. Agriculture is the backbone of its economy providing livelihood to about 78% of the total population. Rice is the staple food of the inhabitants and paddy is the principal crop of the district. Floods, however, are a major impediment in the development of this sector. Credit flow has also been very low. However, this aspect has now started showing signs of improvement. Present marketing linkages in the sector are weak. The average land holding size is also low (0.9 Ha). Fund requirement is suggested to be met under various govt. schemes and credit linkages from banks. An important component here is the requirement of convergence of various agencies like Irrigation Department, ASEB, DRDA, Banks etc.


FISHERIES

Considering the fact that Assam gets a lot of rainfall and that fish is an integral part of the diet of the people of Assam, the state produces just about 5.7% of the total freshwater fish production in India. Nagaon district produces roughly 14,000 MT of fish in a year which is about 9% of the total production in the state. It is estimated that 95% of the population are fish-eaters. This would estimate the total requirement of fish in the district in a year at about 23,000 MT. There is a visible dominance of imported fish in the organized markets.


However one surprisingly observes the phenomenon of exports. Actually, there is lot of demand for local fish because of its better taste/quality when compared with the imported fish. The main reason why imported fish suffers on this score is the delay caused in ice-packing, transportation etc. A comparison of the fish prices reveals that the local “Rohu” variety commands a much higher retail price as compared to its imported counterpart. Thus there is high demand for local fish which explains the exports. The main imported fish is “Rohu”.


There are about 20 small and big rivers, large areas of water bodies, swamps and beels in the district having unique potential for development of inland fisheries. The district also has a 23,000 strong fishermen population.


Another important advantage which the district/state enjoys is the high water table. Thus there is no requirement to dig deep for water. There are a number of unemployed youth in the district and off late it has been observed that more and more of them are opting for fisheries as a livelihood option. Earlier, there were a few social factors because of which fishing was not considered as a very respectable vocation but these days there are no such adverse social factors and fishing sector is being looked at as a decent livelihood option.


There has been a lot of development in aquaculture technologies during the last few decades on account of which experimental production of 10,000 to 15,000 Kg/Ha/yr have also been achieved. These technologies are mainly based on judicious manipulation of species ratios/stocking density and management practices on sound scientific lines.


But by and large, absence of fishing on scientific/commercial principles characterises the fishery sector in the district resulting in low levels of productivity . There is a need to train the fish farmers properly. As the productivity levels are low, profits in the sector get reduced. As a result the settlement values of the water bodies by and large are low, resulting in less incentive for the lessee to invest in the fishery. In fact, it almost becomes like subsistence fish farming. The problem is further compounded by the short average lease periods. A problem which is experienced in the sector is low level of flow of credit.. Due to the risk involved because of flood and absence of insurance cover, banks have not come forward to finance this sector. This situation may be improved by launching pilot projects in the sectors of developing derelict water bodies and riverine fishery through the SHG methods. Efforts are also on to develop wastelands into commercially viable water bodies through rural development schemes under DRDA and the IWDP

ANIMAL HUSBANDRY


Poultry


People in the district of Nagaon are predominantly non - vegetarian and prefer both eggs and meat of birds of local variety. Production is less than the demand in the district. The climatic condition of the district is suitable for poultry farming. Most of the poultry birds are reared in small units. However, the farmers have to depend on other districts/states for supply of Day Old Chicks. Non availability of quality poultry feed in the local market along with high cost of ingredients and limited supply of essential medicines/ vaccines are the major constraints for development of this sector.


Diary


The people in rural areas of the district have long tradition of maintaining cows & buffaloes for draught power and milk. The production of milk per local animal is 1.5 litre/day. The low productivity of the dairy animals is apparently due to poor genetic character of the local cows. There is high preponderance of small holdings in the district. Considering demand & supply in the district, there is ample scope for development of this activity in the district, particularly in rural areas adjacent to urban and semi-urban areas.

HANDLOOM

The handloom Industry is the most important cottage industry in Assam with a glorious past. It is closely associated with art and culture of the society. Mahatma Gandhi made no exaggeration when he remarked “Every woman of Assam is a born weaver. No Assamese girl can expect to become a wife if she does not weave. And she weaves fairy tales. Some of the old patterns were of matchless beauty”. Weaving is a traditional activity of the state.


Nagaon district presents a unique picture in the Handloom and Textile sector. Weaving of fabrics is a way of livelihood of large number of rural families and artisans. Looms are part and parcel of rural households and weaving is an integral part of rural livelihood. However, this important sector is yet to be exploited commercially. It needs to be kept in mind that weaving is only a part time activity and not the primary bread earning activity. As a result, Handloom has not been able to develop to its fullest potential. It is proposed that the inherent advantage which women have in weaving skills shall be exploited. It is felt that demand for the products already exists.


Jajori, which is located about 17 Km from Nagaon town is a very important centre of handloom production. Famous for its “Kacha Pat” products, there are approximately 6,705 nos of weavers here covering most of the families of the place. Considering its importance, govt. has established a Handloom Production Centre at Jajori. The area has immense potential by way of organising, modernisation, training and providing adequate marketing linkages. It is proposed to use the SHG method here to develop its inherent advantage fruitfully.

INDUSTRIES

The district of Nagaon is practically dependent on agriculture and industry has not yet assumed a dominant role in employment generation.


Tea Manufacturing is the predominant industry in the district. In the medium scale industry sector, in addition to Tea Industry, Assam Co-operative Jute Mill Ltd., Kampur co-operative Sugar Mill, Katimari Weaving Project and Sack Craft paper project at Dhing are the main Industrial projects taken up in Co-operative and State sector. Whereas the Jute Mill at Silghat is flourishing, the Kampur Sugar mill has been struggling. The other two mills never took off. With the improvement in the law and order situation in the state and district, it is high time that these two industries could be developed through private sector investment.


There is good scope for agro-based industries including pisciculture and sericulture. But there are identified weaknesses that includes - Power shortage, Seasonal floods, Shortage of Industrial Labor, Lack of practical Entrepreneurial development/motivation, Lack of practical exposure for perspective entrepreneurs to the development of the various economic activities elsewhere.

HANDICRAFTS

Handicraft is an important cottage and household industry sector, which is largely emphasised for providing self-employment opportunities in the rural areas to supplement/augment their earnings. The focus may be given to development of (1) Kuhila craft (2) Pottery & Terracotta (3) Jute, Cane & Bamboo products (4) Rantholi Jewellery.


Resources in nearby areas may also attract investment in this district because of better terrain and railway/road infrastructure.

Notable personalities

Many renowned politicians were born in this town, like Deba Kanta Borooah, former President, All India Congress Committee, Revolutionary Communist leader M. Shamsul Huda also a writer, Literary Pensioner who had been elected several times with also highest ever cast votes in his favour to the Assam Legilative Assembly as its Member from Dhing LAC, Prafulla Kumar Mahanta, youngest Chief Minister, etc. Other famous personalities of Nagaon are: Late Dr Bhabendra Nath Saikia (Former editor of Assamese news-magazine, "Prantik", and children's megazine, "Safura", also director of a few award winning films, and author of several fictions), Late Nabakanta Baruah (Assamese poet and writer), Mahim Borah (Assamese literature), Late Yageswar Sarma (Assamese literature), Late Pranab Baruah (artist),Late Nandi Ram kalita(businessman) etc .

Demographics

As of 2001 India census[2], Nagaon city had a population of 325,981. In 2009 the urban agglomeration had a population of 563,200. it is the fourth largest city in assam after guwahati, silchar and dibrugarh. Males constitute 53% of the population and females 47%. Nagaon has an average literacy rate of 77%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 81%, and female literacy is 73%. In Nagaon, 10% of the population is under 6 years of age.

Where to stay in Nagaon

1. Hotel Swagat, Christianpatty 2. Bora's Inn, Fauzdaripatty 3. Hotel Relax, Christianpatty 4. Hotel Bidisha, Amolapatty 5. Hotel Bohagi, Bara Bazar

Politics

Nagaon is part of Nowgong (Lok Sabha constituency).[3]

See also

References

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