Achipur, a hamlet on the banks of the Hooghly, is just like any other Bengal village. But 300 years ago, this village, 30 km from Taratala, bustled with activity and was dominated by the Chinese people . This was the first Chinese settlement in the country. On every Chinese New Year’s Day and for the rest of that month, Achipur turns into a mini Chinatown. Thousands gather at the Chinese temple here, especially on Sundays, to celebrate the new year. Recently the members of Kolkata’s Chinese community have pooled in nearly 50 lakh rupees to restore the temple and build boarding and lodging facilities for the community. East India Company documents show that a Chinese trader called Atchew Tong sailed into the village in the second decade of the 18th century and settled down. Others soon followed him. Atchew started a sugar plantation attached with a mill in the village.