Kalai Upazila

Kalai Upazila (joypurhat district) area 166.29 sq km, located in between 24°59' and 25°11' north latitudes and in between 89°08' and 89°17' east longitudes. It is bounded by panchbibi and gobindaganj upazilas on the north, khetlal and shibganj (bogra) upazilas on the south, Shibganj and Gobindaganj upazilas on the east, Khetlal and joypurhat sadar upazilas on the west.

Population Total 143197; male 70860, female 72337; Muslim 136427, Hindu 6660, Buddhist 2, Christian 22 and others 86. Indigenous communities such as santal and Buno belong to this upazila.

Water bodies Main rivers: Harabati, nagar.

Administration Kalai Thana was formed on 19 August 1981 and it was turned into an upazila on 3 July 1983. Once Kalai upazila was included in Bogra district; it was included in Joypurhat district on 26 February 1984.

Municipality Union Mouza Village Population Density (per sq km) Literacy rate (%)
Urban Rural Urban Rural
1 5 101 148 16464 126733 861 54.0 49.3
(sq km)
Ward Mahalla Population Density
(per sq km)
Literacy rate (%)
13.11 9 34 16464 1256 54.0
Name of union and GO code Area (acre) Population Literacy rate (%)
Male Female
Ahmmedabad 38 5220 7597 7863 46.7
Udaypur 85 8877 13603 14001 48.9
Zindarpur 95 6245 12704 12922 48.9
Punat 76 7488 14610 14747 49.1
Matrai 66 10022 14173 14513 51.6

Source Bangladesh Population Census 2011, Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics.

Archaeological heritage and relics Nandail Dighi, Harunja Dhap and Mazar (Harunja); Baligram Rajbari, ancient relics and copperplate (Matrai).

War of Liberation Pakistani soldiers invaded the Kalai area in the first days of the beginning of the War of Liberation and had tortured the local people and looted their houses. Freedom fighters organized resistance against the enemies and also attacked therir camps. There were encouinters between freedom fighters and Pak army at Bakhra and Nongola of the upazila.

For details: see কালাই উপজেলা, বাংলাদেশ মুক্তিযুদ্ধ জ্ঞানকোষ (Encyclopedia of Bangladesh War of Liberation), বাংলাদেশ এশিয়াটিক সোসাইটি, ঢাকা ২০২০, খণ্ড ২।

Literacy rate and educational institutions Average literacy 49.8%; male 54.7%, female 45.1%. Educational institutions: college 2, technical college 2, secondary school 26, primary school 48, community school 5, madrasa 33. Noted educational institution: Kalai Moyen Uddin High School (1913).

Newspapers and periodicals Ekal and Sekal.

Cultural organisations Library 1, club 37, cinema hall 2.

Tourist spots Nandail Dighi (Harunja).

Main sources of income Agriculture 76.72%, non-agricultural labourer 2.23%, industry 0.24%, commerce 8.78%, transport and communication 3.04%, service 2.92%, construction 0.51%, religious service 0.10% and others 5.46%.

Ownership of agricultural land Landowner 59.67%, landless 40.33%; agricultural landowner: urban 55.82% and rural 59.90%.

Main crops Paddy, jute, wheat, potato, sugarcane, mustard, vegetables.

Main fruits Mango, jackfruit, papaya.

Extinct or nearly extinct crops Water-melon.

Fisheries, dairies and poultries Dairy 113, poultry 96.

Communication facilities Pucca road 85 km, mud road 154.5 km.

Extinct or nearly extinct traditional transport Palanquin, bullock cart.

Noted manufactories Cold storage, ice factory.

Cottage industries Goldsmith, potteries, weaving, blacksmith, cane work, bamboo and wood work.

Hats, bazars and fairs Hats and bazars are 15, fairs 3, most noted of which are Punat Hat, Molamgari Hat, Kalai Hat, Harunja Hat, Kalai Mela and Molamgari Mela.

Main exports Paddy, rice, potato.

Access to electricity All the wards and unions of the upazila are under rural electrification net-work. However 55.3% of the dwelling households have access to electricity.

Sources of drinking water Tube-well 95.5%, tap 2.2% and others 2.3%.

Sanitation 51.4% of dwelling households of the upazila use sanitary latrines and 25.3% of dwelling households use non-sanitary latrines; 23.3% of households do not have latrine facilities.

Health centres Hospital 1, union health and family welfare centre 5, growth centre 5, community clinic 17, clinic 1.

NGO activities Operationally important NGOs are brac, asa, thengamara mahila sabuj sangha, proshika. [Shahnaz Parveen]

References Bangladesh Population Census 2001 and 2011, Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics; Cultural survey report of Kalai Upazila 2007.