The Division of Rajshahi in the northwestern corner of Bangladesh is bordered on the east by the mighty Jamuna River and the Padma/Ganges River on the south, and shares a disputed border with India to the north and west, making access to Gaud, one of the most interesting archaeological sites in all of Bengal, almost impossible. During Partition, the ancient capital of Gaur was split through the middle and now part of it lies in Bangladesh and part in India.
The city of Rajshahi is the divisional headquarters of Rajshahi division as well as the administrative district that bears its name and is one of the six metropolitan cities of Bangladesh. Itís often referred to as Silk City and Education City. Rajshahi Town stands on the bank of the river Padma. The area of the Rajshahi Town is 96.69 sq km. It consists of four thanas, 39 wards and 169 mahallas. The town has a population of 646716; male 52.42%, female 47.58%. Density of population is 6689 per sq km (Population Census 2001, Preliminary Report). Rajshahi, which is both a district and a divisional town, was flourished, in the seventeenth century. The district head quarters were transferred to Rajshahi Town from Natore in 1825. Its ancient name was Rampur Boalia. The tomb of Hazrat Shah Makhdum (established in 1634) is located at Dargahpara of the town. A flood protection embankment was established in 1855 to save the town. Shahib Bazar is the main business centre of the town. The old areas of the town are Shahib Bazar, Rani Bazar, Reshampatti, Boalia, Ghoramara, Hatemkhan, Dargahpara and Kumarpara. Because of flourishing silk industry Rajshahi is also called the City of Silk. Rajshahi municipality was established in 1876 and was turned into a City Corporation in 1991.
The District of Rajshahi was established in 1772. Maldaha, Bogra, Pabna, Natore and Nawabganj districts were established in phases dividing this district. It has one city corporation, 4 thanas, 7 municipalities, 93 wards, 297 mahallas, 9 upazilas, 70 union parishads, 1678 mouzas and 1858 villages. The upazilas are Bagha, Bagmara, Charghat, Durgapur, Godagari, Mohanpur, Paba, Puthia and Tanore; thanas are Boalia, Rajpara, Matihar, Shah- Mokhdum.