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Posts Tagged ‘Bandel’

Europe along the Hooghly, Serampore, Chandannagar, Chinsurah and Bandel

January 14, 2015 49 comments

Europe along the Hooghly

Serampore (Danish), Chandannagar (French), Chinsurah (Dutch) and Bandel (Portuguese)

Almost a century after Vasco da Gama landed on the West Cost of India (1498), the Europeans started making inroads in Bengal. Using Hooghly (also known as Ganga or Ganges) as the main source of navigation, they started making inroads in Bengal.

Europe along the Hooghly River (Serampore, Chandannagar, Chinsurah and Bandel)

Europe along the Hooghly River (Serampore, Chandannagar, Chinsurah and Bandel)

Soon, European settlement started growing along the Hooghly River in the present day Hooghly District. Long before the British made Calcutta their stronghold, the Portuguese had settled in Bandel. They were closely followed by the Dutch in Chinsurah, Danish in Serampore and the French in Chandannagar.

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Bandel Cheese ~ The Taste of Portugal in Bengal

October 2, 2013 57 comments

Bandel Cheese

The Taste of Portugal in Bengal

Also see: My travelogue on Bandel

Small discs of about a inch in diameter, they come in white and brown colours, they are the Bandel cheese and are available only in a couple of shops in Calcutta’s not so new New Market !!!!!

Bandel Cheese, Plain (White) and Smoked (Brown)

Bandel Cheese, Plain (White) and Smoked (Brown)

Originating from the erstwhile Portuguese settlement of Bandel (about 50 km north of Calcutta) the Bandel Cheese is perhaps the last traces of Portuguese cuisine in Bengal.

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Bandel ~ Church and Imambara

September 11, 2013 32 comments

Bandel

Church & Imambara

Almost a century after Vasco da Gama reached the West Coast of India the Portuguese started making their inroads into Bengal. Soon settlement started growing up along the rivers and the area around present day Hooghly became the Portuguese stronghold. By 1599 a church was constructed on the banks of the Hooghly, making it the oldest Christian Church of West Bengal.

Bandel Church “Our Lady of the Happy Voyage,” Bandel, Hooghly, West Bengal

Bandel Church “Our Lady of the Happy Voyage,” Bandel, Hooghly, West Bengal

But the good old days of the Portuguese were short lived. In 1632 The Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan attacked the Portuguese settlement which also had a small fort. The Portuguese were severely defeated and their Fort & Church were reduced to ruins. Several Portuguese and local Christians were killed. Father Joan De Cruz was taken prisoner to Agra, where he was thrown in front of a ferocious elephant. But the rogue elephant instead of trampling the priest to dead lifted him by his trunk and placed him in his back.

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