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Bandipora District

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About the Bandipora district

Click on the following link to download district statistics as per NITI Ayog website
http://niti.gov.in/file/408/download?token=U4ic8hBh

Brief About Bandipore District
Bandipora District is a newly formed district of the state of Jammu and Kashmir of India.

Administration
Bandipora district consists of 5 blocks: Bandipora, Gurez, Tuilal, Sunbal and Hajin. Each block consists of a number of panchayats.

Politics
Bandipora District has 3 assembly constituencies: Gurez, Bandipora and Sonawari

History
Among the recently created eight Districts, Bandipora is one, which is required to be carved out from the existing Baramulla District. Situated at an averageheight of 1701 meters above the sea level, the District shall spread over approximately anarea of 398 sq. kilometers. It is bounded in the west by District Kupwara, in the South-east by District Ganderbal and in the east by District Kargil, Baramulla in the south andon north side it is bounded by LOC. Bandipora, the District headquarter, is about 55 kmsfrom Srinagar accessible by road as well as by River Jehlum.

Bandipora all along used to be a well known town which almost served as a port in old times. It used to be one of the important places of the old kingdom known asKhuaihom. During Mughal period, there were two main ports which were the source ofcommunication between Srinagar and the Central Asian States for commercial purposes.These ports were namely, Aloosa (Ghat) and Nasoo (Bandipora). For about a century,Aloosa remained headquarter for Pargana Khuaihom. The route to Central Asia traversedthrough Aloosa and once Mughal emperors conferred the area of Khuaihom as ‘Jagir’ tothe family of Bandey’s in Srinagar, since then the area has come to be known as‘Bandipora’. Bandipora in ancient and medieval times as Khuaihom had three routeswhich used to connect Kashmir with China, Mongolia, Kazakhistan, Kirgistan,Turkamania, Afghanistan and Iran. Bandipora is known as “Gateway of Gilgit” andAstore. Commerce was transacted with Central Asia and Ladakh region via Bandipora.Bandipora situated around the north shore of the Wular Lake, in front of the mountains, isan edging of sloping ground covered with villages.

The topography of the new District represents a mix of beautifulmountains and streams offering tremendous potential for developing scenic andadventure tourism. River Kishen Ganga flows through this District which has vast potential for generating hydro-electricity and also marine life. With the DistrictAdministration located nearby it should be possible for them to deploy resources moreeffectively. Nallahs Madhumati and Arin famous for trout fish flow in this District. TheWuller Lake, largest of all fresh lakes in Asia lends further attraction to this District andprovides economic activity to large chunk of population.

Gurez, presently a Tehsil and a Sub-Division, is a large Valley lying to thenorth of Kashmir is shaped somewhat like letter “W” the base and the western arm beingtraversed by the Kishen Ganga River and the eastern arm by the Burzil stream. The valleyis surrounded on every side by lofty peaks and mountain slopes. The south east end of theValley is occupied by superb peaks of Pir Panjal range dividing the Tilail Valley fromthat of Gurez which provides attraction for adventure trekking. The entire area hasstrategic importance as beyond Rajdhani pass the complete west and northern borders ofthe state run along the Line of Control.

Though Kashmiri is the main language spoken in this District however,Pahari and Gojri are also being spoken in the upper areas of Tehsil Bandipora. Sheena(Darad) is the local language in Gurez and Tilail areas. Agriculture is the main activity ofthe people. However, Wuller Lake surrounding a large portion of the District, a sizablepopulation is dependent on catching and marketing fish. Nadru, Singhara (Water nut) andPachi (used for famous Kashmiri mat – Wagu) are Wullar products and are source ofincome for a section of population.

Despite creation of District Kupwara as an independent District in 1979(with Tehsils Kupwara, Handwara and Karnah as its jurisdiction), District Baramullacontinued to be the largest District in entire Kashmir Valley comprising nine Tehsils and16 C.D. and N.E.S Blocks, including a number of places which are 80-120 kms distantfrom District headquarters. Mostly these places fall in Tehsil Gurez and upper reaches ofTehsil Bandipora. Based on these factors Wazir Commission has also recommendedcreation of a new District at Bandipora with Tehsils Bandipora, Sonawari and Gurez asits territorial jurisdiction.

For demarcation of geographical boundaries of the newly created DistrictBandipora the Committee held several meetings with the Divisional/DistrictAdministration and also obtained their proposals. The Committee received suggestionsfrom the general public, associations, organizations, welfare committees etc. The viewsof concerned MP, MLA’s, MLC’s and other leaders of the public opinion were alsoascertained. While various persons had expressed that entire Sonwari Tehsil beamalgamated with newly created District Ganderbal, some people were of the opinionthat Niabat Sumbal and Shadipora of Tehsil Sonwari be included in newly createdDistrict Ganderbal. Another group of people were of the opinion that 13 villages ofNiabat Sumbal be included with District Ganderbal because of their proximity with thenew District. While another shade of people were of the opinion that Niabat Hajin withsome territorial adjustments be upgraded as a Tehsil to form part of District Bandipora assame is nearer to District headquarter. Views were expressed that village Sheikh Zoopresently falling in Tehsil Ganderbal be included with Tehsil Sonwari for administrativeconvenience. Yet another demand was that village Rampora Rajpora of Tehsil Sopore beincluded in Tehsil Bandipora as same has better links with Bandipora. The Committeeextensively toured these areas to ascertain and see for themselves as to which villagesshould be excluded from Tehsil Sonwari and included in District.

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