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Calcutta had witnessed phenomenal growth in the fields of commerce, industry, transport, health, education, amenities, public utilities, waterways, ports, literature, art and culture, which continues even today. Colonial development of Calcutta started in the 18th century with the construction of several buildings and it became the nerve centre of administration for Continental India. It was called the ‘city of palaces’ and was developed as second only to London, remnants of which are still quite visible even today. Several institutions were established in the early 19th century and further development occurred with the introduction of state-of-the-art infrastructure facilities.
Calcutta also sustained political events and calamities, e.g. partition of Bengal (1905), shifting of the capital (1911), Indian independence movement, air raids during World War II, great Bengal famine (1943), communal violence (1946), partition of India (1947) and, lastly, the creation of Bangladesh (1971), which led to a massive influx of refugees. Hardly any other city in the world had grown so rapidly and endured such enormous historical events.
Calcutta’s journey from a simple place of commerce to evolving into an administrative centre and eventually becoming a hub for Indian social, cultural, educational and literary development is quite unmatched. By virtue of its journey through various events, and accommodating its ever-increasing population and commuters, the Calcutta story truly becomes a ‘benchmark in urban vitality’.
This lecture series concentrates on historical development of Calcutta over the past three centuries, mainly focusing on its heritage of colonial civil engineering, with relevant lessons on sustainability that find their relevance even today with a vision for the future.
Please go to https://zoom.us/join and enter the corresponding Meeting ID: 868 2870 5630. The password is 202021 for all sessions.
Howrah Bridge: A city iron for 75 years
Amitabha is a Civil Engineering graduate of 1957 from Bengal Engineering College (now Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology). He is one of the most senior ICE members in India with more than 5 decades of continuous association with ICE. He is a Fellow of ICE and also with other professional institutions like, Institution of Engineers (India), International Association of Bridge and Structural Engineers (IABSE).
After having worked in the Braithwaite Burn & Jessop Construction Company Limited, an internationally reputed construction agency, on design and construction of bridges and other structures, Amitabha took charge of the Eastern Zone offices of STUP Consultants Private Limited, an Indo-French consulting organization with footprint in many countries in South East and Middle-East, and continues with them as the Advisor to the Board.
He has been responsible for formulation and publication of Codes of Practice for a diverse engineering subjects on behalf of IRC (Indian Road Congress) and BIS (Bureau of Indian Standards) and now contributes extensively to professional publications. Responsible for export of Indian Consultancy services to many countries, he is currently the President of the Consulting Engineers Association of India (CEAI).
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