Country Code: +91 State Capital: Kolkata STD Code: 033
Police Control Room 100
Lalbazar Control Room 22350230, 22155000-01
West Bengal Police 22215415, 22215486
G.R.P. Sealdah 23503940
G.R.P. Howrah 26602508
Roadways Information (Long Distance):
Calcutta State Transport Corporation 22481916
North Bengal State Transport Corporation 23561687, 22430736
South Bengal State Transport Corporation 22481731, 22486259
Calcutta Tramways Company 22482681, 22481731
West Bengal State Transport Corporation 24116382, 24116388
General Manager (Eastern Railway) 22207596
Secretary to General Manager 22209088
Assistant Commercial Manager (Fairlie) 22202201
Assistant Commercial Manager (Koilaghata) 22484503
General Manager (S.E. Railway) 24393532
Secretary to General Manager 24392724
Assistant Commercial Manager (Reservation) 22489494
Howrah 26607412, 26603542
Howrah (New Complex) 26602217
Sealdah 23503535, 23503537
Central 1331, 1310, 22203545
Reservation (Eastern) 136, 137, 138
Reservation (South Eastern) 22480257
Indian Airlines 22360730, 22364433
Airport (General Enquiry) 140, 25119637
Flight Arrival 142
Flight Departure 25119841, 143
Reservation Enquiry 141, 25119638
Tourist Bureau, West Bengal 22488271, 22488273
I.T.D.C. (Government of India) 22821402, 22821475
West Bengal Government Secretariat
Writers Building 22355601, 22353371
New Secretariat 22486271
St. Johns Ambulance (H.Q.) 22485277
Calcutta Municipal Corporation (Ambulance) 22392232, 22392233
Fire 101, 22440101, 22441063
S.S.K.M. Hospital (P.G.) 22236026, 22236242
Calcutta Medical College 22414901, 22414904
B.M.Birla Heart Research Centre 24567001, 24567005
Belle View Nursing Home 22477473, 22472321
Kothari Medical Centre & Research Institute 24567050, 24792561
Calcutta Hospital and Medical Research 24567700, 24791805
Woodland 24567079, 24567076
R.K.M. Seva Pratisthan (Sishu Mangal) 24753636, 24753638
R.K. Kar Medical College & Hospital 25557676, 25557656
N.R.S. Medical College and Hospital 22443212, 22443217
Peerless Hospital 24622394, 24622462
Accommodation Information :
State Government Guest House (Kyd.Street) 22297463
State Government Circuit House (Hugeford St.) 22405242
Great Eastern Hotel 22482311
Oberoi Grand 22492323
Taj Bengal 22233939
Hotel Hindustan International 22472394
Airport Ashoka 25519111
Kenilworth Hotel 22823403
Park hotel 22493121
Peerless Inn 22280301
Astor Hotel 22829950
Fairlawn Hotel 22451510
Hotel Rut Deen 22476911
Lytton Hotel 22491881
Hotel Shalimar 22285030
Hotel Ananda Bhawan 22374014
Hotel Saptarshi 24405420
I will never forget the moment of love & Spirtuality that I have experienced in Tagor house.
even by watching on hiscloths, his chair, his Pictures or even it is better to say even by looking at any Brike of his House . I could feel his presence. I dont know what was the meaninig of that song but believe it or not. it took me easily to Heaven.
when I came to my self I saw I was crying Silently & walking floor & room of his house.
it is so pity we dont have this great man in this world now & I`m Proude that once he was invited to Iran by one of our Former Kings "Shah Reza Shah Pahlavi" of Iran as a personal guest.
I felt so proud by watching the picture of him in my Country in his photo Gallery. here is one of his photos in iran that I found through net.
Fondest memory: The streets of Kolkata are busy, like it is in most of the cities in India. But it seams to be more accepted with human povered rickshaws and people sitting/sleeping in the streets. The chaotice atmosphere is the charm of Kolkata.
Fondest memory: Whenever you change money in Kolkata you have to declare the transaction on a receipt. They call it an encashment certificate. "We hereby certify that we have purchased today foreign currency... bla, bla...", and you have to show your passport, write down passport number, name and sign the letter. Bureaucracy!
Fondest memory: The Hindus consider the cows in India as holy and they are allowed to freely roam the cities whatever traffic around. This looks strange to foreigners, but you will get used to it. It is always like that everywhere you go. The hindus believe the cows are wise and show a motherly calm.
Fondest memory: Ambassador Classic ("The king of Indian roads") is a car manufactured by Hindustan Motors of India. It has been in production since 1948 with few modifications or changes. And you really feel it when you enter the car. The car is a slow rattletrap with bad brakes. I felt unsecure in the car. Nearly all the taxis in Kolkata were Ambassador Classics.
Kolkata has so many hidden 'gems' of architecural and historic value.One has to look beyond the grimy shopfronts in the crowded narrow lanes in order to suddenly spot a beautiful archway, or graceful latticed marble balcony. The city was known as 'The City of Palaces' because of its palatial homes. Most are still there, but modernity has encrouched, and their once magnificent gardens have been turned into parking areas and hawker stalls.
In Sudder Street, which is THE back-packer paradise of Kolkata- there stands a wonderful marble bust of Rabindranath Tagore- Kolkata's favourite son. It is covered with dust and bird droppings, and has not seen a clean in ages. I spotted it quite by chance. One would hope that these sort of monuments would be looked after.
Unfortunately- we came upon many examples of such neglect and decay in Kolkata. The only possible conclusion that I could come to is that maybe Kolkatans have other priorities. Its a very tough city, with an overloaded infrastructure and population.
We bought a wonderful book in Park Street, at the Oxford Bookstore, which is a guide to walking in Kolkata. I suggest that the purchase of this book will make your visit to Kolkata that much more memorable. We certainly found it to be invaluable.
A Jaywalker's Guide to Calcutta- by Soumitra Das will take you on an unimaginable adventure, and you will see the other side of the city, when it was really The City of Palaces.
Fondest memory: I miss the energy and vibrancy of this city- there is something new to discover around every crowded corner and in every mysterious narrow lane.
"A characteristic feature of Kolkata is the para or neighbourhoods having a strong sense of community. Typically, every para has its own community club with a clubroom and often, a playing field. People here habitually indulge in adda or leisurely chat, and these adda sessions are often a form of freestyle intellectual conversation. The city has a tradition of political graffiti depicting everything from outrageous slander to witty banter and limericks, caricatures to propaganda."
The idea of a para is not alien to most of us, but to see it so strongly evident can sometimes be almost unnerving. The sensible traveler will recognize and respect certain boundaries when encountered. Generally this so-sensible meanderer will keep to areas where tourists are commonplace, or at least nothing out of the ordinary. But every so often our curiosity will take us places where both good and bad things can happen - more likely the latter. Being somewhat of a professional at wandering in places I have no business being, I can assure you that it is basic human nature almost all of the time to extend the benefit of the doubt. It probably has to do with our civilization-over-aggression compulsion to avoid conflict, or maybe the fact I look like a harmless, bumbling idiot. Regardless, people seem very forgiving in general. Until your luck runs out, anyway.
Either you are a proper tourist, or you're going to do what you're going to do anyway. May the gods protect us both. :)
Fondest memory: Well...truthfully...I've never been there.
Like in any other country West Bengal also has lot of Coconut available. This coconut vendor is like many other 100s of vendors in and around Kolkata sells coconut for very cheap. In Kolkata you will get coconut in almost every corner of the city, price is about Rs.5 to Rs.6/- about 20Cents.
Just try this. It is really the best gift of God.
(date visited : July 24, 2006)
Tourist Visa- single entry (valid for 6 months and can stay in Nepal for 2 months)
Visa fee - 1,500 rupees
1. Original passport
2. Photocopy of passport
3. 1 Picture
4. Application form
No. 1, National Library Ave.
Alipore Road, Kolkata 700027
Tel. # 33479117
Opens from 9 a.m. - 4. p.m. daily
I was able to get my visa for just 10 minutes after giving all the necessary requirements. I was asked if it is my first time to travel in Nepal and I said yes then they immediately put the sticker in my passport and that's it!!!
(date visited : July 24, 2006)
100 US $ = R 4,625.00 (as of July 24, 2006)
Foreign Money Changers
Address : 23A Netaji Subhas Road,
5th Floor, Room # 7A
(Opposite. Coal Bhawan)
Kolkata - 700 001, India
Tel. # 3096-9167
(as of July 18, 2006)
Thomas Cook Foreign Exchange (Kolkata Airport)
100 US $ * 45.05 Rupees = R 4,505
less service charge of R 100
Amount Received = R 4,405
Mother Teresa's mission is known all over the world, but there are other incredible characters who have given their lives to work amongst the poor of Calcutta.
One of these is commonly known a s 'Doctor Jack'. Jack Preger himself is of an Orthodox Jewish background and completed his medical training in Dublin after doing PPE at Oxford. After first heading out in 1972 to Bangladesh following a radion appeal for doctors he ended up in Calcutta.
He began issuing free prescriptions to the very poorest on Calcutta's streets. The work has expanded slowly, and now the organisation is known as "Calcutta rescue". He has tended to keep a somewhat low-profile as the Indian goverment have not exactly supported his presence - mainly due to the protest he has organised concening Bangladeshi children who have mysteriously disappeared.
It is a cause that is well worth your support.
Also note the very clever bags that prescriptions are put into - giving instuctions on dosage to to illiterate.
Calcutta has always had something of an image problem. The 'black hole of Calcutta' incident did nothing to help this image, and whilst Mother Teresa's mission has made great efforts, the city remains byword for poverty and destitution.
This must make it harder to attract new industries to the city, who may more naturally gravitate towards more 'modern' cities such as Bangalore.
The book 'City of Joy' following the avaentures of an American Doctor, who leaves his job to 'find himself' gets drawn into helping the rickshaw pullers of Calcutta. It is certainly an inspiring book - and hence the ironic title.
It was also made into a film starring Patrick Swayze. Whilst not a 'monster' hit, it is still worth seeking out and watching before a visit - even if you can't stand the acting talents of Mr Swayze.
One of Calcuttas landmarks- Victoria Memorial is an ornate hunderd year old marble structure from the days of the raj. The design is said to have been inspired by the Taj mahal.
On the death of queen Victoria, the then viceroy to India- lord Curzon, decided to construct a memorial to honour the queen... Much of the funds for the project were raised from voulantary contributions by the Indian princes and thegeneral public.
Fondest memory: Photography (and the use of mobile phones) is prohibitted inside the memorial building. I couldnt resist getting at least one shot (sneakily- using my camera phone). Its one of the better displays as far as museums in India go- very informative and organised. Lots of history- the history of calcutta thru the ages- the east india company, the british raj and then the various socio-political/ cultural movements of the region...
Many cities in the world lack the breathing space. Calcutta is more polluted than its' European/ American or even southeast Asian counter parts. However, Kolkata was built by the British on the bank of river Ganges on the pattern of London as exact replica but over the years, the city has grown leaps and bounds creating more problem and pollution. While govt. regulates and regularly fines the cars with EUROIII emission even at the slightest fault. It has never really done anything the monoxide emitting buses (both govt. & private) and the diesel taxis. So by evening Calcutta air become highly polluted. People from the city flock in the maidan and near the Ganges for fresh air and for nostalgia. It is almost a regular feature of Kolkata, try this to visit near the Victoria in the evening, you will realize why.
Fondest memory: The Maidan area , Victoria memorial, the fort William, the Baboo Ghat, Outram Jetty the Eden gardens, the princep jetty and the lawn itself are enough to bring nostalgia to Bengalis and non - Bengalis. The serenity, the people, the culture is unique in nature and found nowhere in the country. Ask any young or old who has lived in Kolkata, will share the same experience. The famous Nandan, the art gallery, the Ravindra Sadan, Indian Museum all located in the same area.