Dhaka (/ˈdɑːkə/ DAH-kə or /ˈdækə/ DAK-ə, Bengali: [ˈɖʱaka]), formerly known as Dacca, is the capital and the largest city of Bangladesh, as well as the largest city in the Bengal region. It is the ninth-largest and the sixth-most densely populous city in the world with, as of 2011, a population of 8.9 million residents within the city limits, and a population of over 21 million residents in the Greater Dhaka Area. Dhaka is the economic, political, and cultural center of Bangladesh, and is one of the major cities in South Asia, the largest city in Eastern South Asia and among the Bay of Bengal countries; and one of the largest cities among OIC countries.
- The city is the largest in Bengal, and it manufactures cotton and silk the best and cheapest. The plenty and cheapness of provisions are incredible, and the country is full of inhabitants, but it breeds none of tolerable courage, for five or six armed men will chase a thousand.
- Captain Hamilton, in Forster, vol. I, pp., 218-219. Forster, George, A Journey From Bengal To England, 2 vols., Languages Department, Punjab, 1970, first published 1808. quoted from Jain, S., & Jain, M. (2011). The India they saw: Foreign accounts. New Delhi: Ocean Books. vol 4.
- Hamilton, Captain Alexander travelled, by land and sea, between the Cape of Good-hope and the Island of Japan from 1688 to 1723.
- ...But this brilliant period in the history of the city came to a sudden end. At the whim of a viceroy it had risen. In like manner it fell. Murshid Kuli Khan, at the beginning of the eighteenth century, transferred his capital to Murshidabad, and Dacca, deserted by the viceroy and all the paraphernalia of courts, was shorn of half its glory. Left to the rule of its Naib Nazims or Deputy-Governors, it sank in dignity and importance, and henceforth its name is heard but seldom in the larger issues that convulsed Bengal.
- Francis Bradley Bradley-Birt, Dacca: The romance of an eastern capital (1906), p. 15
- In Dhaka, Muslims have started riots with the complicity of the police. They attacked the houses of the Hindus, raped the women and slaughtered all those who resisted. They burned down whole neighbourhoods under the eyes of the policemen. These only intervened when a Hindu grabbed a weapon to defend himself. In that case, they entered the house, seized the weapons and arrested the men. The Muslims were armed; they on their part did have that right. All attempts by Congress to brng them to peace have failed.
- Mircea Eliade, on the riots in Dhaka, in his travel diary for 1928-31. Journal des Indes, 1992. p. 128. as quoted in Elst, K. (2010). The saffron swastika: The notion of "Hindu fascism". p 803.
- On August 15 the provincial government in Dacca was fugitive in its own home. It was faced with immediate problems of finding accommodation for thousands of government personnel in which was after all, before partition, only a small country town.
- Dacca is a tropical, impoverished, polluted, and verdant river city, in the middle of the great part-submerged marsh that is Bangladesh. The capital city is clamorously loud, from honking cars, radios, conversations, muezzins, and mechanical disasters. People toil in steamy heat, in acrid haze and dust, hefting stones at construction sites or holding together a small shop. The streets are crammed with rickshaws decked out in explosive color, and with rickety buses whose mangled flanks, painted only a little less gaudily beautiful than the rickshaws, bear the scars of abrupt lane changes gone bad. People drive with a headlong recklessness. They jaywalk worse. The palm trees offer shelter from an implacable sun. At night, it falls truly dark in the way of very poor cities; there is only a fraction of the garish neon and fluorescent light that illuminates the wealthier megacities of South Asia.
- quoted in Bass, G. J. (2014). The Blood telegram: Nixon, Kissinger, and a forgotten genocide.
- Dhaka, once known as a city of mosques or the Venice of the east, will soon become a city of shopping malls—a shapeless concrete jungle if the current trends continue.