Shobhabazar (also spelt Sovabazar) is a neighbourhood of North Kolkata, in Kolkata district in the Indian state of West Bengal.

Neighbourhood in Kolkata (Calcutta)
Shobhabazar is located in Kolkata
Location in Kolkata
Coordinates: 22°35′46″N 88°21′55″E / 22.596111°N 88.365278°ECoordinates: 22°35′46″N 88°21′55″E / 22.596111°N 88.365278°E
Country India
StateWest Bengal
Metro StationShobhabazar-Sutanuti
Municipal corporationKolkata Municipal Corporation
KMC wards9, 17, 18, 20
36 ft (11 m)
 • TotalFor population see linked KMC ward pages
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
Area code(s)+91 33
Lok Sabha constituencyKolkata Uttar
Vidhan Sabha constituencyShyampukur
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Sheths and Basaks, well-to-do traders at Saptagram, were among the first to settle in Sutanuti and are said to have cleared much of the jungles in the area. Neighbouring Shyambazar was named after the family deity of the Basaks, Shyam Roy (or Gobinda), the attendant of goddess Kali by Shobharam Basak, one of the richest native inhabitants of 18th century Kolkata.[1]

When Ramcharan Deb was murdered by Maratha marauders in the jungles of Midnapore, his widow came back to their house at Gobindapur with her three sons and five daughters. The house was washed away by the Hooghly River and they moved to Arpooly, and from there to Shobhabazar. Ramcharan’s youngest son Maharaja Nabakrishna Deb rose to fame and power.[2]

The glorious days of Shobhabazar starts with the decision of the British to build, after their decisive win in Battle of Plassey, the new Fort William in the heart of Gobindapur. The inhabitants of the village were compensated and provided with land in Taltala, Kumortuli and Shobhabazar.[3]

Maharaja Nabakrishna Deb built his Rajbari (palace) at Shobhabazar. Some say that he acquired it from Shobharam Basak and made major extensions, matching his taste for pomp and grandeur.[2] At least money was not in short supply. After the death of Siraj ud-Daulah, Nabakrishna Deb along with Mir Jafar, Amir Beg and Ramchand Roy earned eight crore rupees worth of treasures from the secret treasury.[4]

Maharaja Nabakrishna Deb is said to have constructed the road from Upper Chitpur Road (now Rabindra Sarani) to Upper Circular Road (now Acharya Prafulla Chandra Road) and named with his own name. However, while half of the street was merged with Grey Street (now Aurobindo Sarani), another half became Shobhabazar Street. Another street north of it was named Raja Nabakrishna Street.[1]

Amongst those in the Deb family, who had streets named after them are: Raja Gopi Mohun Deb, Raja Sir Radhakanta Deb, Raja Rajendra Narain, Raja Mahendra Narain, Raja Debendra Narain (adopted side), Raja Raj Krishna, Taja Bahadur Kali Krishna, Maharaja Kamal Krishna, Maharaja Bahadur Sir Narendra Krishna, and Rajah Bahadur Harendra Krishna (own side).[1]


Shobhabazar is spread over Ward No. 9 of Kolkata Municipal Corporation and is bounded by Baghbazar on the north, Shyambazar on the east, Nimtala on the south, and the River Hooghly on the west.[5]


Maharaja Naba Krishna Deb started the Durga Puja in Shobhabazar Rajbari in 1757. He set a pattern for the puja which became a fashion and a status symbol among the upcoming merchant class of Kolkata. The number of Englishmen attending the family Durga Puja became an index of prestige. Religious scruples fell by the wayside. The nautch girls were mostly from Muslim gharanas. The Englishmen attending the dance-parties, dined on beef and ham from Wilson’s Hotel, and drank to their heart’s contentment.[6]

The Shobhabazar Durga Puja is split into two parts, near each other, but both the Pujas continue with their characteristic distinctions. Karttikeya is dressed in breaches worn by Englishmen. In most Bengali pujas Ganesha dons the traditional dhuti-chadar', but at Shobhabazar he is an idol worshipped by the Marwari ancestors of Jagat Seth; and Durga wears jewellery designed after the Mughals or Nawabs of Oudh.[7] In earlier days Nidhu Babu and kabials like Anthony Firingee and Bhola Moira vied for attention with the nautch girls and Baijis.[8] As the non-Brahmin patrons of Sovabazar Rajbari were not allowed by tradition to offer annobhog or rice in any form, they offered homemade sweets to the goddess. For the past 250 years, generations of haluikars (traditional confectioners) from Bardhaman come down to the Sovabazar Rajbari and make lip-smacking delicacies like jibe gaja, khaja and nimki.[9]

It was in the Shobhabazar Rajbari dalan (courtyard) that Swami Vivekananda was accorded a civic reception after his return from the Parliament of the World's Religions at Chicago.[8]

Shobhabazar Rajbari is identified as heritage building by Kolkata Municipal Corporation.[10]


Apart from the Debs, the Bhagyakul Roy family and the Nattas (pioneers of jatra) have given the neighbourhood much of its architectural and cultural uniqueness. The Nattas’ putulbari (house of statues) used to be a major attraction for tourists. The Sovabazar club, founded in 1886, still organises football and badminton tournaments, and keeps younger generations attached to their roots.[8]

See also

External links

Kolkata/North Kolkata travel guide from Wikivoyage


  1. ^ a b c Cotton, H.E.A., Calcutta Old and New, 1909/1980, p. 289-291, General Printers and Publishers Pvt. Ltd.
  2. ^ a b Bandopadhyay, Debashis, Bonedi Kolkatar Gharbari, (in Bengali), Second impression 2002, pp. 101-102, Ananda Publishers, ISBN 81-7756-158-8
  3. ^ Cotton, H.E.A, p. 72
  4. ^ Sengupta, Subodh Chandra and Bose, Anjali, Sansad Bangali Charitabhidhan (Biographical dictionary) (in Bengali), Vol I, 1998 edition, p 242. ISBN 81-85626-65-0
  5. ^ Detail Maps 0f 141 Wards of Kolkata, D.R.Publication and Sales Concern, 66 College Street, Kolkata – 700073
  6. ^ Jaya Chaliha and Bunny Gupta, Durga Puja in Calcutta in Calcutta The Living City Vol II, edited by Sukanta Chaudhuri, Oxford University Press, first published 1990, paperback edition 2005, pp 332-333. ISBN 0-19-563697-X
  7. ^ Sengupta, Ratnottama (21 October 2007). "Old is gold, even in Pujas". Times of India, 21 October 2007. Retrieved 15 February 2008.
  8. ^ a b c Rudra, Aeya (10 August 2002). "Time stands still in rajader para". Times of India, 10 August 2002. Retrieved 8 February 2008.
  9. ^ "Opulence dims but not the tradition". Indian Express, 20 October 2007. Retrieved 15 February 2008.
  10. ^ "Heritage buildings in Kolkata". West Bengal Tourism. Archived from the original on 28 November 2006. Retrieved 15 February 2008.
Map of Municipal Corporations and Municipalities
Map of Municipal Corporations and Municipalities.

Burtolla (or Bartala) is a neighbourhood of North Kolkata in Kolkata district in the Indian state of West Bengal.

Kolkata Metro Line 1

The Line 1, also known as North–South Metro of the Kolkata Metro is a rapid transit system serving Kolkata, South 24 Parganas and North 24 Parganas in Indian state of West Bengal. It consists of 24 operational stations from Kavi Subhash to Noapara, of which 7 are elevated, 2 are at grade and the remaining 15 are underground and 2 other elevated stations under construction with a total distance of 31 km. The line connects Noapara and New Garia and uses 5 ft 6 in (1,676 mm) Broad gauge rolling stock. Noapara was opened on 10 July 2013 and is elevated and is located 2.09 km. north of Dum Dum.

It was the first underground railway to be built in India, with the first operations commencing in October 1984 and the full stretch that was initially planned being operational by February 1995. On 28 December 2010, it became the 17th zone of the Indian Railways. Being the country's first, and a completely indigenous process, the construction of the Kolkata Metro was more of a trial-and-error affair, in contrast to the Delhi Metro, which has seen the involvement of numerous international consultants. As a result, it took nearly 23 years to completely construct around 15 km underground railway from Birpara up to Tollygunj Metro Station.


Kumortuli (also spelt Kumartuli, or the archaic spelling Coomartolly) is a traditional potters’ quarter in northern Kolkata (previously known as Calcutta), the capital of the east Indian state of West Bengal. The city is famous as a sculpting hot-spot which not only manufactures clay idols for various festivals but also regularly exports them.

Nabakrishna Deb

Maharaja Nabakrishna Deb (also known as Raja Nabakrishna Deb, archaic spelling Nubkissen) (1733–1797), founder of the Shovabazar Raj family, was a prominent Raja and close confidante/ally of Robert Clive. He was the key figure in the plot against Nawab Siraj-ud-Daula although some believed him to be a traitor of India, who sold his motherland to the British and enabling them to rule India.

North Kolkata

North Kolkata is a significant area in Kolkata and is the oldest part of the city. It consists of many neighbourhoods such as Shyambazar, Bagbazar, Kumartuli, Shobhabazar, Posta, Jorasanko, Rajabazar, Phoolbagan, Maniktala, Kankurgachi, Ultadanga, Chitpur, Belgachia, Cossipore and Sinthee etc. There are lots of old heritage buildings and temples. Well known Shovabazar Rajbari is situated there.

Raja Narayan Deb

Raja Narayan Deb (Bengali: রাজা নারায়ণ দেব) is an Indian music director, composer working in the Bollywood and Bengali film industries. He is a member of the Shobhabazar Rajbari. He was a member of the Bangla band "Parash Pathar".

Shobhabazar Lal Mandir

The Lal Mandir is an old Hindu temple in the locality of Shobhabazar of Kolkata, India.It is said to be built by the Raja of Shobhabazar.

Shobhabazar Rajbari

Shobhabazar Rajbari (Shobhabazar Royal Palace) is the palace of the Shobhabazar royal family located in the Indian city of Kolkata. Raja Nabakrishna Deb (1737–97), founder of the Shobhabazar Rajbari (at 35), started life modestly but soon amassed considerable wealth in his service to the British, in particular by his role in assisting to topple Siraj ud-Daulah. During his lifetime Raja Nabakrishna Deb built two houses. The building at 35 Raja Nabakrishna Street (known as Shobhabazar Rajbari or "Baag ola Bari - House with the lions"), on the northern side of the road, was the one first constructed by him, subsequently inherited by his adopted son from his elder brother Gopimohan and his descendants including his son Radhakanta Deb. The house at 33 Raja Nabakrishna Street (known as Choto Rajbari) was built by him when a son was born to him later in life, and was left to his biological son Rajkrishna and his descendants.

Shobhabazar Sutanuti metro station

Shobhabazar Sutanuti is a station of the Kolkata Metro. It is located near Shobhabazar.


Sonagachi is India's largest red-light district. Its area contains several hundred multi-story brothels and an estimated 11,000 sex workers (2012). Sonagachi is located in North Kolkata near the intersection of Chittaranjan Avenue and Shobhabazar with Beadon Street, about one kilometer north of Kolkata's Marble Palace area.

Sovabazar Ahiritola railway station

Sovabazar Ahiritola railway station is a small railway station in the town of Shobhabazar. It serves the local areas of Shobhabazar and Ahiritola in Kolkata, West Bengal, India. It is a very important station. The station has one platform only. Its station code is SOLA.

Sovabazar Raj

The Sovabazar Raj family, seated at Sovabazar Palace were the Zamindars of Shobhabazar. The clan begins with a Maharaja Naba Krishna Deb Bahadur left behind two sons, adopted son Raja Gopimohan Deb (1768) and his own son Raja Raj Krishna Deb. Raja Gopimohan Deb was founder director of Hindu College and founder of famous Dharma Sabha. He offered much precious gold and silver to Maa Kali of Kalighat. A very well known scholar in Hindi, Parsi, and English. His son was Radhakanta Deb, whereas Raja Rajkrishna Deb (1782–1823) had eight sons.

Shiv Krishna

Kali Krishna

Debi Krishna

Apurba Krishna

Kamal Krishna

Madhab Krishna

Narendra Krishna DebThe Zamindari consisted more than half of Sutanuti and thousands of acres of lands in several districts of Bengal (now parts of West Bengal and Bangladesh).

Star Theatre, Kolkata

The Star Theatre is a theatre in Kolkata, built in 1883. Initially situated in Beadon Street, the theatre later moved to Cornwallis Street - now called Bidhan Sarani. The Star, along with the Minerva Theatre, was one of the first institutions of commercial Bengali theatre. The Star, along with Minerva and The Classic Theatre, were also one of the places where the first motion pictures in Bengal, made by Hira Lala Sen, were screened. This is a heritage site of Calcutta (Kolkata) that was destroyed in a fire and thereafter restored by the local municipal corporation. The restored Star Theatre maintains the heritage facade; the interiors are contemporary. The property is maintained by a private company. At present, it is primarily a cinema hall; plays are staged on about two days per month. However, during winter (December and January) plays are staged here much more frequently, of the order of ten days per month. The auditorium has excellent acoustics. Star Theatre is close to the junction of Grey Street (Aurobindo Saranee) and Cornwallis Street (Bidhan Saranee); the area near this junction is called Hatibagan (Elephant Park). The theatre is a 10-minute walk from the Shobhabazar-Sutanuti station of the underground railway. Star Theatre has an underground car park with a nominal parking fee of Rs 10/- per hour (minimum three hours). Tramcar tracks, and services, on Grey Street and Cornwallis Street enhance the heritage ambience.

Girish Chandra Ghosh was one of the first to produce plays at the Star Theatre, in the 1880s.

In 2012, the Star Theatre was to be returned to civic ownership, "to stop commercialization of the historic building that was once visited by Bengali luminaries such as Vidyasagar, Ramakrishna Paramhansa and Rabindranath Tagore."

Strand Road, Kolkata

Strand Road, also referred to as The Strand, is a major thoroughfare in downtown Kolkata, India. Running along the east bank of the Hooghly River, the road connects Prinsep Ghat to Nimtala Crematorium and the Shobhabazar neighbourhood.

Ward No. 10, Kolkata Municipal Corporation

Ward No. 10, Kolkata Municipal Corporation is an administrative division of Kolkata Municipal Corporation in Borough No. 2, covering parts of Shyambazar, Shobhabazar and Shyampukur neighbourhoods in North Kolkata, in the Indian state of West Bengal.

Ward No. 17, Kolkata Municipal Corporation

Ward No. 17, Kolkata Municipal Corporation is an administrative division of Kolkata Municipal Corporation in Borough No. 2, covering parts of Shobhabazar and Darjipara neighbourhoods in North Kolkata, in the Indian state of West Bengal.

Ward No. 18, Kolkata Municipal Corporation

Ward No. 18, Kolkata Municipal Corporation is an administrative division of Kolkata Municipal Corporation in Borough No. 2, covering parts of Shobhabazar neighbourhood in North Kolkata, in the Indian state of West Bengal.

Ward No. 20, Kolkata Municipal Corporation

Ward No. 20, Kolkata Municipal Corporation is an administrative division of Kolkata Municipal Corporation in Borough No. 2, covering parts of Shobhabazar and Ahiritola neighbourhoods in North Kolkata, in the Indian state of West Bengal.

Ward No. 9, Kolkata Municipal Corporation

Ward No. 9, Kolkata Municipal Corporation is an administrative division of Kolkata Municipal Corporation in Borough No. 1, covering parts of Shobhabazar and Kumortuli neighbourhoods in North Kolkata, in the Indian state of West Bengal.


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