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, the official name until 2001) is the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal.
Following Indian independence in 1947, Kolkata, which was once the centre of modern Indian education, science, culture, and politics, suffered several decades of economic stagnation.During the mid-1980s, Mumbai (then called Bombay) overtook Kolkata as India's most populous city.In 1985, prime minister Rajiv Gandhi dubbed Kolkata a "dying city" in light of its socio-political woes.Richard Wellesley, Governor-General of the Presidency of Fort William between 17, was largely responsible for the development of the city and its public architecture.The city underwent rapid industrial growth starting in the early 1850s, especially in the textile and jute industries; this encouraged British companies to massively invest in infrastructure projects, which included telegraph connections and Howrah railway station.In 2011, the city had population of 4.5 million, while the population of the city and its suburbs was 14.1 million, making it the third-most populous metropolitan area in India.
In 2008 its gross domestic product (adjusted for purchasing power parity) was estimated to be In the late 17th century, the three villages that predated Calcutta were ruled by the Nawab of Bengal under Mughal suzerainty.The coalescence of British and Indian culture resulted in the emergence of a new babu class of urbane Indians, whose members were often bureaucrats, professionals, newspaper readers, and Anglophiles; they usually belonged to upper-caste Hindu communities.In the 19th century, the Bengal Renaissance brought about an increased sociocultural sophistication among city denizens.In 1793, ruling power of the Nawabs were abolished and East India company took complete control of the city and the province.In the early 19th century, the marshes surrounding the city were drained; the government area was laid out along the banks of the Hooghly River.Kolkata culture features idiosyncrasies that include distinctively close-knit neighbourhoods (paras) and freestyle intellectual exchanges (adda).