Midnapore is the district headquarters of Paschim Medinipur district of the Indian state of West Bengal. It is situated on the banks of the Kangsabati River (variously known as Kasai and Cossye). This area had taken a pioneering role in India’s freedom struggle. A large number of freedom fighters who had bravely faced the gallows are the sons of the soil of Midnapore. To free their motherland from the yokes of bondage, they had willingly sacrificed themselves in the freedom pyre.
Electricity is available, although as in the rest of West Bengal, demand exceeds supply. Power outages are common in the summer and monsoon months, although outages lasting more than an hour are becoming rarer. Most businesses and upper middle-class and rich households have backup generators and batteries that they use in times of outages.
Water is a scarce resource in Midnapore. Most of the water comes from the Kasai river, which is shrinking in size every year due to over-exploitation. The municipal water supply is free but not ample; tap water is available for about an hour twice a day and is stored by those who can, in plastic, metal, or concrete reservoirs or in buckets. The water is of questionable purity prompting the proliferation of individual water purification units.
Sewage disposal is another concern. Many of the lower income-communities in the city do not have adequate plumbing and must rely on refuse-collectors to haul out human waste. Not all drains are covered, causing a proliferation of disease causing flies and mosquitoes. Since Midnapore is drier than many other coastal and humid low-lying towns of West Bengal, this problem is not as acute as it.
Midnapore is located at 22.25°N 87.65°E and is 23 metres above sea-level.
In the 2011 census, Midnapore municipality had a population of 169,127, out of which 85,362 were males and 83,765 were females. The 0–6 years population was 14,365. Effective literacy rate for the 7+ population was 90.01 per cent.
As of 2001 India census, Medinipur had a population of 153,349. Medinipur has an average literacy rate of 75%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 80%, and female literacy is 71%. In Medinipur, 10% of the population is under 6 years of age.
Festivals of Midnapore
There are a number of festivals, many of religious import that are held in Midnapore each year. Urs of the venerated saint Hazrat Maulana Syed Shah Murshed Ali Alquadri Al Jilani son of Hazrat Syed Shah Mehr Ali Alquadri Al Baghdadiis a major occasion for Bengali Muslims of West Bengal and Bangladesh. This is held each year near the Jora masjid (twin mosques). Milad-un-Nabi is also celebrated with the bursting of fireworks. Many devout Muslims observe fasts during the month of Ramadan, which ends in celebration at Eid ul-Fitr. Eid ul-Adha locally known as Bakhri-Eid is also celebrated. During the Remembrance of Muharram, processions throng the streets enacting mock stick-fights in remembrance of Husayn ibn Ali. In the Bengali month of Asharh, (roughly corresponding to mid-September), Rathayatra is celebrated as is the case in the rest of Bengal and Odisha. A fair is hosted near the local Jagannath temple. And during Christmas, a fair on the grounds of Nirmal Hriday Ashram is well participated. The church is opened to all on this occasion and people from all communities throng the prayer hall to take a glimpse of the beautiful murals narrating the life of Jesus. The resident students recreate the scene of Jesus’ birth with clay models.