Saidpur is an excellent example of communal harmony. The people here are very emotional and peace loving. So it can be said- Come and see. How peacefully both the inhabitants are living! No malice and no hatred among themselves. There is also the airport attached to the cantonment which is just waiting to be declared as an international airport, which is the most significant and important thing in this town, writes Makama Mahmud Chowdhury.
In the cooling south wind of a busy city,
When the storm of isolation begins to blow,
I was exposed by your grace then.
Complex instability when there is in the surrounding,
Then I get back to your fascinating call,
There rests my peaceful determination. (Sumaiya Akter)
The above lines describe nothing but my hometown, the name of which is Saidpur situated in the district of Nilphamari where my peace extends unlimitedly. I feel nostalgic in the wind of my hometown looking at the gentle beauty of the city. Let’s get a view of my home town although it is very hard to illustrate with words yet try as much as I can. The land of the blue, Nilphamari district is highly known to be. As a result of the compulsory cultivation of indigo by the British during the British rule the name Nilphamari of the district has emerged through various evolutions. The north area of the district is slightly elevated and drought prone having a sandy area of Teesta in the east, this high and sandy land has gradually turned into fertile agricultural land in the southwest where various crops are being produced which are used to meet the food needs of the people.
Nilphamari district bears witness too many past histories. Various festivals and fairs including Satyapir songs, duck games, fish games are organized in various areas of the district. Besides, in the villages there was once a very popular and well-known art of making earthenware and bamboo utensils by the hands of the people. However, in the evolution of time, these wonderful art-cultures seem to have faded in the abyss of time embracing the new one by rejecting the old with the contact or in the name of modernity. There are many small, large and also medium sized villages and towns in the vicinity of Nilphamari district which are providing vitality and longevity to the district.
Known as the northern gateway, a small part of the city is covered by a town called Saidpur. It has the largest railway workshop in the country established in 1870. Thousands of workers’ hard work and love have kept this dying factory to life support. Old engines and train bogies are constantly being repaired and new ones are being built which are playing a major and significant role in the public transport sector across the country. Despite the fact that the factory itself is in life support, it is supporting the country’s economy by providing a large portion of the money in return for the hard work and sacrifices of the officers and employees working here. A little sympathy from the government and keen surveillance can turn the factory from a life support to a lifeline of the country’s economy.
There is a Christian cemetery at Islambagh in Saidpur where countless Christians lie in eternal sleep. Adjacent to the east-north walls of their cemeteries is the Taj Mahal-shaped Cini mosque in the style of more than a century-old magnificent and ancient Mughal architecture where prayers, jikir, tarabih, etc. constantly goes on. This mosque has now been greatly expanded and extended using the same kind of building materials. However, the previous part has become now a bit reddish as it is quite ancient. A closer look at the mosque reveals that the old part has a deep connection with the newly built part just like the same connection and interaction the people living here have.
Saidpur is an excellent example of communal harmony. The people here are very emotional and peace loving. So it can be said- Come and see. How peacefully both the inhabitants are living! No malice and no hatred among themselves. There is also the airport attached to the cantonment which is just waiting to be declared as an international airport, which is the most significant and important thing in this town. Work is being done at a very fast pace to make the airport international and once the work is completed, this beloved city will be introduced to the people in a new and decent way.
The people here are very hospitable. They always try to entertain others with at least something or a cup of tea. Saidpur is an exemplary place of peaceful living for Bengalis and non-Bengalis. This city is having a lot of abandoned railway lands. Although the city is known as an educational city it is so unfortunate that there is no government university here. As a result, Students in this constantly neglected region run from one place to another at the risk of their lives where at least one government university can provide low cost higher education to many students. And this requires a little compassion and strong efforts from the upper house. With the efforts of the government, the students can be enlightened in the light of higher education even from their own city.
Finally, as there is prevailing Corona Virus everywhere so I will never ask you to come now but giving you all the invitation to visit my beloved city at least once.
“Come to visit my city,
The path lies along this way,
Come to a place called Saidpur
Stop your chariot.”
Makama Mahmud Chowdhury is a Student, Department of Civil Engineering, Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology