Bihar is a state in eastern part of India. The Bihar name is derived from Sanskrit world ‘Vihara’ means Buddhist Monasteries. Its capital is Jharkhand. Bihar is bounded by Uttar Pradesh state in the West, Jharkhand state in the South, West Bengal in the East and Nepal in the North. Its ancient name was Magadha and was hub of education, culture and tradition. Mauryan Empire which was one of the famous empires originated and flourished in Magadha. It is also considered the origin place of Buddhism, one of the greatest religions of world. In 5th century, it had old Nalanda University which was world famous. One can still see ruins of Nalanda University in Bihar.
Since 1974s, Bihar has been lagged behind in terms of economical and social growth and development as compared to other Indian states. Official languages of Bihar are Hindi and Urdu. Apart from this, Bhojpuru, Magadhi are also spoken in some parts of Bihar.
Religion in Bihar:
It is interesting to note that 83% population of Bihar associate themselves to Hinduism whereas, only 16% population belong to Islam and number of Janis, Sikhs and christens and quite low .Bihar was home to many Spiritual Gurus. Mahatma Buddha got enlightenment at Gaya in Bihar and Patna is the birth place of Guru Govind Singh Ji, the tenth guru of Sikhism. Mahavir Jain was also born in Vaishali district.
Bihar Food and Costumes:
Most of the Biharis eat Roti with vegetable breakfast and dinner while in lunch they eat Dal and rice. Very less Hindus take non vegetarian diet whereas, Muslims take it more usually. Most of the men in Bihar wear Kurta with Dhoti or Pajama and women wear Sari irrespective of their marital status.
Festivals in Bihar:
Main festival in Bihar is Chhath. During Chhath, God Sun is worshipped. Nowadays, Chhath is celebrated all over India wherever people of Bihar Have migrated. Another religious observance is of Kanwarias who wear saffron colored cloth and collect holy water from a sacred place at Sultanganj and then walk barefooted to Deoghar to take holy dip in Shiva- Linga by covering 108 km of distance. Besides, they celebrate all the major festivals like Diwali, Dussehara, Eid, Holi Raksha Bandhan.
Bihar Social life style:
People of Bihar live very simple life. Majority of the people are less educated and conservative. People are very rigid about cast and religion. Politics in Bihar is also based on caste, religion that’s why adequate changes are difficult to bring. Most of the marriages are arranged marriages and take place according to old customs and are celebrated at large scale.
Bihar is in the grip of corruption badly. There are many criminal cases against many politicians in Bihar. It is utterly difficult to get small works done without paying bribery. Law and order needs reform there.
Natural Resources in Bihar:
Forest area in Bihar is less in compared to other states. But it is blessed with sound water resources. Ganges, Baghmati, Burhi Gandak , Kamla, Falugu, Lilahjan,Mohana, Ratua etc. are the main rivers there.
Soil here is fertile and is of Indo-Gangetic plain. Fertile land is conducive for agricultural and industrial growth in Bihar. Bihar is also rich creator of steatite, Pyrites, quartzite crude mica lime stone and bauxite.
Bihar used to a famous learning centre because of two universities namely Nalanda and Vikramshila in ancient time. But, later these centers were destroyed by invaders. During British rule too new universities like University of Patna, Medical college of Patna and Science College came into existence and revived the education system.
But right now there is great scarcity of educational infrastructure leading to migration of large number of students to other parts of country.
Primary Education in Bihar:
There is free education facility, an initiative started by central government. Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is another initiative taken by government with the aim of providing 100% education to all. There are around 54000 primary schools and around 1000 private schools. There is a huge gap between demand and supply of teachers also. It is alarming that many schools have single teacher and only 3 % primary schools have facility of computer. There is huge gender gap in the admission of students.
In spite of having many colleges and universities in the region still students have to migrate to other parts of the country due to insufficient infrastructure and lack of facilities.
Bihar Flora and Fauna:
Only 7.2 % area is under forest. Bihar receives above 1,600 millimeters of rainfall which promotes growth of Sal forests in the area. Main tees which can be found here in abundance here are Shorea ,Robusta, Sal, Cedrela, Toona, Khair and Semal.
River Dolphin, the most endangered mammals is found in Ganges and Brahmputra. There is a sanctuary named Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin which is doing commendable job in protecting the same. Diverse ecology and weather conditions are conducive in sheltering rich wildlife and flora and fauna. There is Valmiki National Park which is Tiger Reserve of India.
Tourism in Bihar:
Bihar has great significance from point of view of tourism. It was a land of great ancient universities. It is the place where Buddhists prayed and then spread Buddhism into rest of the world. Due to these reasons there are innumerable holy shrines related to different religions. Ecological conditions in Bihar range from foot hills of Himalayas to fertile land of plains. Places worth visiting are
Bihar Prestshila Hills:
Pestshila Hills guards Gaya at one side and Ramshila Hills at another side. Gaya has great religious significance for Hindu’s as it is one of the ‘ Damas’ . As per legendry, Gaya was a demon who was distressed over death. When he discussed this with Lord Vishnu, he was too delighted to see kindness in a demon and gave him boon with which he could forgive the sinners. It is only 100 km from Patna and Gaya is held in great reverence by Hindu’s. Phalgu River flows along Gaya ji and peculiarity of this river is that its water is not visible from outside due to thick layer of sand and silt on the surface. Devotees have to dig out water from the surface. This is believed to be the tree where Lord Buddha got enlightenment.
Ahirauli is a famous village just 5 km from Buxar where temple of Devi Ahirauli is situated. According to legendry, Devi Ahilaya was name of Rishi Gautam. She was cursed by her husband and turned into a stone over a minor misunderstanding. Once God Ramachandra was passing by and identified her. She was rescued by his mere touching. Since then this place is believed to get people rid of sins done intentionally or unintentionally.
Hassanpura is a village situated at a distance of 21 km from Siwan. It is known for its importance historically, religiously and natural beauty. A saint named Makhdum Saiyed Hasan Chisti visited this place from Arabia. Being highly impressed with culture and custom decided to stay back here. He was founder of this place.
Its importance is connected to the history of freedom movement in India. At this very place Mahatama Ganghi took first initiative towards making of nationalist movement. The place is also known for Champaran Movement which was a voice against exploitation of the indigo planters. Ultimately a committee was set up to hear the grievances of farmers.
Bihar Maner Sharif:
This village is situated just 32 km from Patna and has significant past. The place used to be a hub of learning and famous grammarian Panini and Barauchi hailed from this place only. It also housed two famous Muslim tombs. One is called Chotti Dargah and another called Bari Dargah.
Bihar Mahabodhi Temple:
This place has been declared as UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a Buddhist Temple in Bodh Gaya. Meaning of Mahabodhi is Great Awakening Temple. This place has great significance as Siddhartha Gautama; the Buddha attained spiritual enlightenment here. Just adjacent to the temple is holy Bodhi tree. Peculiarity of this temple is this that its tomb is covered with gold plates weighing 290 kg by Government of Thailand. Ashoka is believed to be founder of this temple who visited Bodh Gaya with the purpose of establishing monastery and shrine at the holy place.
Bihar Bodhi Tree:
It is that holy Peepal tree under which Siddhata Buddha meditated for years and attained enlightenment. Temple was constructed to the east of this tree later on where Buddha spent his first week after attaining enlightenment.
Bihar Sanjay Gandhi Jaivik Udyan:
It is also called Sanjay Gandhi Botanical and Zoological Garden. It is located in Patna and one of the most visited park in Bihar. It was opened in 1973
Bihar Animals and Plants at Exhibit:
As it is a botanical garden it houses more than 300 species of trees, herbs and shrubs. There are nursery of medicinal plants, a fern house, a rose garden and an orchid house. There are many attractive grassy grounds. There is very good collection of animals. More than 1200 animals belonging to more than 100 species are exhibited for entertainment of tourists. For example, lion leopard rhinoceros hippopotamus Himalayan bear golden cat zebra crocodile white peacock and many more.
The park also houses as aquarium and a snake house where 35 species of fish and 68 snakes of 7 species are kept at display. It is the proud owner of one horned Rhinoceros after Saint Diego Wild animal Park in U.S.A.
This park generates more than 3.50 crore of revenue every year. Most attractive feature for children is toy train spread over area of 4 km of length. Apart from this, it has a lake where one can enjoy boating.
Besides all this, the zoo has many success stories about breeding of many rare varieties of animals and hybrids.
Golghar or round house is situated to the west of the Gandhi Maidan in Patna is a type of granary constructed by Captain John Garstin, in 1786. The granary was constructed in the time of British to store the grain in the time of famine. It is a dome shaped structure with unique architectural designing. Its base is 125 meters in width and height is 29 meters. Its walls are 3.6 meter thick and foundation of the building is 125 meter. It has a spiral staircase of 145 steps around the monument to climb up the top. One interesting fact regarding the monument is that it was never filled up to the capacity as there is some architectural error in it, if it is filled to the capacity, its door can’t be closed.
One can have a view of fascinating beauty of the place and River Ganges flowing nearby.
Takth Shri Patna Sahib/ Gurudwara Patna Sahib:
It is birth place of Guru Govind Singh Ji where stands Gurudwara of Takth Sri Harmandir Sahib. It is situated at Harmandar Gali in Patna city. It is the place where order of fearlessness and valiance were issued to Sikh community. This place is regarded as center for propagating Sikhism in the east and second accepted Takht of Sikhs.
Bihar Patna Museum:
It is a multi-purpose museum located in Bihar. It was set up during British rule in 1917 in Mughal and Rajput style.
It houses variety of archaeological objects, old coins, art objects, instruments, sculptures, thankas, paintings belonging to Hindu and Buddhist artists. Its peculiar item is collection of paintings of British Period showing day to day life of a first President of India, Dr. Rajender Prasad.
A 200 million year old fossil of a tree is also housed here. It also exhibit a coffer unearthed in 1958 by an archaeologist A.S. Altekar at the artifact Stupa of Vaishali which has sacred ashes of Buddha.
Bihar Patna Devi:
It is also called Maa Patneshwari Temple which is the oldest and the most sacred temples in Patna and it is one of the 51 Shakti Pithas in India. This place has great significance as right thigh of dead body of the Sati is believes to had fallen here when it was chopped off by Lord Vishnu using Sudarshan Chakra. The place remains thronged with pilgrims throughout the year but during Navratras and Ram Navami more crowds can be seen. All the idols in the shrine are made of black stone.
Bihar Mahavir Mandir:
This Hindu temple is situated in Patna and dedicated to Lord Hanuman where millions of pilgrims throng the shrine every year. It is second most visited shrine of North India. This temple’s trust has second highest budget in North India after Maa Vaishno Devi. Long queues of devotees of Lord Hanuman can be seen on Saturdays and Tuesday.
Bihar Fantasia Water Park:
It is first of its kind in Patna, situated at Sampatchak-Parsa road. It was inaugurated in October 2012, and still renovations are going on. It is spread over the area of 5 acres and can accommodate 1000 people. It is equipped with all the modern facilities. The main attraction of the water park is its 80 feet tall statue shower which sprinkle water from the top in the form of shower. Apart from this it has innumerable attractions like water rides, restaurants, and swimming pools wave pool and safety equipments. For children there are special pools, sprinkle shower, cartoon shower and wave pool. There are 11 water rides there: some for kids and some for adults. 20 feet high water ride is popular among boys. Rain dance is also main attraction here especially for teenagers which can accommodate around 50 people. There is greenery all around due to 1600 trees in the premises. A group of 25 CCTV cameras keep a close vigil on security and people inside the park.
Agam Kuan : It is located in the East of Patna and it means is ‘bottomless well.’ The temple near it is devoted to Maa Shitala Devi. Agam Kuan is 105 feet deep and circular in shape with diameter of 200 feet. The most distinctive feature of the well is its eight arched windows. It is believed that Ashoka threw his 99 elder brothers to obtain the throne of Mauryan Empire. The is also connected to Jain legends which say that once Jain Mink Sedarshana was thrown into this well by a king, his body was found seated on a lotus floating on water.
Bihar Patna Planetarium:
It is popularly known as Taramandal as well as Indira Gandhi Planetarium. It is one of the largest planetariums in India and attracts local as well as foreign tourists. It was inaugurated in 1993 by then Chief Minister of Biahr Mr. Lalu Prasad Yadav.It organizes many film shows on astronomy and night sky at night. It has a dome shaped structures with screen at the top and people have to look up as if looking at sky. It is entertaining as memorable experience. 276 persons can be accommodated in the Sky Theater at one time.
Welfare schemes in Bihar:
Number of schemes are run from time to time by Welfare department for the welfare of SC, ST and other backward class students. Popular schemes are Swaena Jayanti Gram Swarojgar yojana, Jawahar Gram Samriddhi Yojna, Indira Aawas Yojana. There are special programs for upliftment like Community Development, Drought-Prone Area Program etc.
Page Title: Bihar is a State in Eastern Part of India
Tags: Welfare schemes in Bihar, Fantasia Water Park, Sanjay Gandhi Jaivik Udyan, Animals and plants at exhibit, Mahabodhi Temple, Tourism in Bihar, Primary Education in Bihar, Natural Resources in Bihar
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