Horse Carriage a two or four wheeled vehicle pulled
by horses; also familiarly termed as tomtom in Bangla. In the case of
one-horse pull carriage, it is termed tanga (in Bangla).
Horse carriages originated in the Indian subcontinent during
the British period. The first horse carriage landed in Dhaka from
in mid-19th century. The roads were developed and renovated from
brick-dust to cement and finally to pitch covered for plying these
Horse carriage waiting
for passengers, Dhaka
Following the British culture, local zamindars
(landlords) and the elites started to use horse carriages as their mode
Gradually, these carriages also started to ply in district and sub-divisional
The structure and name of carriages differed from place
to place. A coach could be two-wheeled or four-wheeled; hooded with colour-glass
windows or open seated. Generally, the wheels were large in size and made
of wood. In Dhaka, the carriage was called tomtom, but in some other places
it was known as tanga, jurigari or ekka. The driver of horse carriage
was known as Kochoan or Sahis.
With the introduction of the motor car, the horse carriage
trade declined. In some part of the country, it is entirely extinct. In
Dhaka, a few carriages still ply from Gulistan to Sadarghat of Old Dhaka.
However, in rural areas of Rajshahi, Mymensingh, Netrokona, Dinajpur,
Naogaon and Jessore, horse carriages still transport passengers and goods.
Colourful carriage rallies organised on special days or functions still
attract people of all ages. [Mesbahuddin Tuhin]