Painam Nagar

Ruins in Sonargaon

Constructed almost entirely between 1895 and 1905 on a small segment of the ancient capital city, the tiny settlement of Painam Nagar consists of a single street, lined with around 50 (now dilapidated) mansions built by wealthy Hindu merchants. The once-elegant town is busy fighting a losing battle with nature, and with every passing year the trees and vines drape themselves a little further over the decaying houses, creating a delightful ghost-town quality where the buildings appear to hang like exotic fruits from the trees.

Many of the original merchant owners fled to India at the time of the Partition, leaving their elegant homes in the care of poor tenants, who did nothing to maintain them. Most of the remaining owners pulled out during the anti-Hindu riots of 1964, which led to the 1965 Indo–Pakistan War. Despite the rot, a few people continue to live in some of the houses and their bright shades add a technicolour tint to the village.