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West Bengal is a state in the eastern region of India and is the nation's fourth most populous. It is also the seventh most populous sub-national entity in the world. West Bengal is the sixth-largest contributor to India's GDP. It is bordered by the countries of Nepal, Bhutan, and Bangladesh and the states of Orissa, Jharkhand, Bihar, Sikkim, and Assam and has an area of 34,267 sq mi (88,752 sq km); the capital is Kolkata (Calcutta). It encompasses two broad natural regions, the Gangetic Plain in the south and the sub-Himalayan and Himalayan area in the north. From the 3rd century bce the broader region of Bengal formed part of Ashoka’s empire. In the 4th century ce it was absorbed into the Gupta empire. The Bengal region was part of several kingdoms and dynasties over the course of Indian history.
Coordinates (Kolkata)
22.5697°N 88.3697°E
East India
1 November 1956
Largest city
19 Total
88,752 km 2  (34,267.3 sq mi)
Area rank
13 th
Population (2011)
Population Rank
4 th
1,029.2/km 2  (2,665.7/sq mi)
Time zone
IST ( UTC+05:30)
ISO 3166 code
Official languages
Bengali · English

West Bengal State animal Fishing Cat

State animal
Fishing cat
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West Bengal State Bird  White-throated Kingfisher

State bird
White-throated Kingfisher More »

West Bengal State flower  Night-flowering Jasmine

State flower
Night-flowering Jasmine More »

West Bengal State tree Devil Tree

State tree
Devil Tree
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Architecture of Bengal
The Bengal region, which includes the Republic of Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal, has many architectural relics and monuments dating back thousands of years.

Architecture of Bengal

The Pala Empire was a Buddhist dynasty in control of Bengal from the 8th to the 12th century. Palas created a distinctive form of Buddhist art known as the "Pala School of Sculptural Art." The gigantic structures of Vikramshila Vihar, Odantpuri Vihar, and Jagaddal Vihar were masterpieces of the Palas. More »
Durga Puja

Durga puja , also referred to as Durgotsava , is an annual Hindu festival in South Asia that celebrates worship of the Hindu goddess Durga. It refers to all the ten days observed as Mahalaya,prothomä","dwitiya","tritiya","chaturthi","panchami", Shashthi , Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami, Maha Navami and Bijoya Dashami. The dates of Durga Puja celebrations

Durga Puja for tourists at West Bengal
are set according to the traditional Hindu calendar and the fortnight corresponding to the festival is called Devi Paksha . Devi Paksha is preceded by Mahalaya , the last day of the previous fortnight Pitri Pokkho , and is ended on Kojagori Lokkhi Puja . Durga Puja is widely celebrated in the Indian states of West Bengal, Assam, Jharkhand, Orissa and Tripura where it is a five-day annual holiday. In West Bengal and Tripura which has majority of Bengali Hindus it is the biggest festival of the year. Not only is it the biggest Hindu festival celebrated throughout the State, but it is also the most significant socio-cultural event in Bengali society. Apart from eastern India, Durga Puja is also celebrated in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Punjab, Kashmir, Karnataka and Kerala.
Durga Puja is also celebrated as a major festival in Nepal and in Bangladesh where 10% population are Hindu. Nowadays, many diaspora Bengali cultural organizations arrange for Durgotsab in countries such as the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, France, The Netherlands, Singapore and Kuwait, among others. In 2006, a grand Durga Puja ceremony was held in the Great Court of the British Museum.. More »

Darjeeling Himalayan Railway

The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, nicknamed the "Toy Train", is a 2 ft (610 mm) narrow gauge railway from New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling in West Bengal, run by the Indian Railways. It was built between 1879 and 1881 and is about 86 kilometres (53 mi) long.


The elevation level is from about 100 metres (328 ft) at New Jalpaiguri to about 2,200 metres (7,218 ft) at Darjeeling. Four modern diesel locomotives handle most of the scheduled services: however the daily Kurseong-Darjeeling return service and the daily tourist trains from Darjeeling to Ghum (India's highest railway station) are handled by vintage British-built B Class steam locomotives.Since 1999 the train has been a World Heritage Site as listed by UNESCO. In 2005, UNESCO added the Nilgiri Mountain Railway as an extension to the original designation. In 2008 the 96-kilometre (60 mi), 2.5-foot (760 mm) gauge Kalka–Shimla Railway, opened in 1903, was also added. More
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