Q:

What was Bangladesh formerly known as?

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Quick Answer

Bangladesh was formerly known as East Pakistan, a region of Pakistan. However, because of disputes over the distribution of tax money and a desire for greater political autonomy, Bangladeshi forces joined with the Indian military to fight against West Pakistan, eventually creating the state of Bangladesh in 1971.

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Full Answer

The name "Bangladesh" comes from the word "Bengali," which refers to the people of Bengali descent who make up a majority of the population of Bangladesh.

While India was under the control of the British Empire, Bengal was a province of British India. After India became independent, political leaders partitioned Bengal along religious lines, with the eastern, Muslim-majority portion becoming a part of Pakistan called "East Bengal." In 1955, its name changed to East Pakistan.

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