Bara Katra is one of Dhaka's oldest buildings, built in 1644 by Mir Abdul Qasem. It was originally an enclosed quadrangle on the Buri Ganga, with a marvellous entrance/gate with four wings and 22 rooms. The remains include the entrance and the tower. In a sad an delapidated state, one needs to use one's imagination to visualize the grandeur that this place must have held.
Here is the front of the entrance:
and the rear:
Back side of the edifice:
Underside of the archway with decorations:
Living quarters under the archway. The archway also contained a few stores.
Inside Bara Katra is a Madrasa now. A kind man showed me around. Interior views:
Stairs inside Bara Katra:
Chhota Katra was built by Shaista Khan in 1663. D'Oyly mentions it in his "Antiquities of Dhaka." It is similar to Bara Katra, but even less remains.
Entrance of Chhota Katra:
Inside Chhota Katra was an umbrella-making shop with these walls:
View from top of Chhota Katra looking to the river:
Having recently visited Italy and seen the amount of tourist revenue they must get out of old monuments, I am convinced that if we take steps to save/restore these monuments, our investment will be paid back many times. Why is it that we so easily let our irreplaceable buildings slide to destruction?
I got the historical facts from "Discover the Monuments of Bangladesh" by Dr. Nazimuddin Ahmed, published by UPL.