Patna, also known Pataliputra is the capital of Bihar. Pataliputra was known as Pushpapur and Kusumpur in the earlier times, both of them means the city of flowers. Patali also means the trumpet flower. The city of Patna was founded by the Ajatshatru’s son, Udayana. To Fa-hien, the Chinese traveler, who visited Pataliputra a century earlier, it looked so magnificent that he thought it must have been built by supernatural beings. Patna is situated at the confluence of Son, Punpun and Ganga rivers. It stretches along the southern banks of Ganga for about 15 km. Patna is also a convenient place to visit Nepal through a land route. Patna can be visited throughout the year, except from April to June, which are very hot.
Patna was original known as Pataliputra or Patalipattan and its recorded history dates back to the 600 B.C. It was the capital of Chandragupta Maurya, the first recorded emperor of India, but gradually it lost its importance after the decline of the Mauryan Empire. During the medieval era, it rose to prominence again under Shershah Suri who ruled at the beginning of the 16th century A.D. People have the belief that Patna was founded by Ajatashatru and he adopted several measures to protect the town from the incessant foreign invasions. The great Mauryan emperor Ashoka also ruled from here. The later Guptas, including Chandragupta Vikramaditya and Samudragupta, made Pataliputra their capital.
The famous Chinese travelers Fa-Hien and Hiuen-Tsang visited this town in the 3rd and 7th century respectively. Patna was a repository of knowledge and wisdom in the historic times. Scholars like Kautilya created their remarkable works by staying here. The grandson of Aurangzeb, Azim-us-Shan came to Patna in the year 1703 as its governor. Due to his efforts he transformed Patna into a gorgeous town gave it the name “Azimabad”. The city came under the control of the British after the decline of the Mughals. They had started a factory here in 1620 for the trade of calico and silk. In the year 2000, a separate state called Jharkhand was separated from Bihar.
Though geographically located in the Magadh region of Bihar, many residents of Patna are natives of one of the four other regions of Bihar -Bhojpur, Mithila, Vajj and Ang, which differ only slightly from each other. Intermarriages and cultural intermixing among the people of the five regions has been so common that it may be difficult for an outsider to discern the differences. Intermixing of people is also common at the village level (e.g. resident of Gulni include people from Gaya, Ganga-par and other villages).
Family orientation in Patna : People are religious and family-oriented, and their lives are deeply rooted in tradition. The interests of the family take precedence over that of an individual. Families are generally large, though the government is actively encouraging family planning to curb rapid population growth. Extended families often live together in one home because of economic necessity. Although the culture is same among the regions, the dialects spoken are quite different. Many talented people of Bihar have emigrated for better opportunities.