Chandrapur - A Tete a Tete with the City
Earlier known as : Chanda
Founded in : Around 14th century
Location : Western India, Near Nagpur in Maharashtra
Best time to visit : February to May
Local Transport : Private cars, taxis, jeeps, rickshaws.
Souvenir : Jewellery, bangles, handicrafts.
Places to see : Tadoba National Park, Bhamragarh Wildlife Sanctuary, Ramala Talav Garden. Mul, Ballarpur, Bhadrawati.
The Tale of the City
The ancient history of the district earlier known as Chanda and now Chandrapur is shrouded in mystery. The Puranas say that Chandrapur or the city of Moon was founded by Krtadhvaja Raja, but it was Khandkya Balla Sah, who actually is said to have laid the foundations in 1450 AD. This area called the Gond kingdom was ruled by Hindu and Buddhist kings. After this, the Mana kings ruled this place around the 9th century. After the 17th century the Maratha period started. The last of the Marathas Raghuji Bhosale died without any heir in 1853, and Chandrapur was attached to the British Empire. History has it that in Krta Yuga, this place was named as Lokapura. In the Dyapara Yuga, during the time of Raja Chandrahasa, the name was changed to Indupur and then to Chandrapur. Chandrapur was the capital of the Gond dynasty from 12th to the 18th century During the British rule this place came to be known as Chanda for no particular reason. It was so known until 1964 when its name was changed to Chandrapur again.
Chandrapur - Down the Ages
Chandrapur, the Gond City, was an independent district and had three tehsils: Mul, Warora, and Brahmpuri. Down the Ages saw Chandrapur change many hands until it reached the hands of the British in the 18th century. There were not changes in the boundaries of this place until in 1956; the district was handed over from Madhya Pradesh to Maharashtra. Chandrapur became a part of Maharashtra from 1960. For administrative convenience, these districts were divided into Gadchiroli and Chandrapur. Down the Ages has seen Chandrapur comprise of many more tehsils and is a successfully developed industrial town today.
As we enter the city, there is a lot of nostalgia and history attached to it. Called the Chanda or the moon, this place is no less a beautiful place. Lying along the tributary of the Wardha River, this is largest town in the district. With its Gond methods of fortifications, the town offers the best to the tourist who visits this place. The tourist can carry the surroundings, ambience and the nostalgia as the travel kitty apart from the regular stuff that he would cherish buying from this place.
Chandrapur - Joie de Vivre in the City
Chandrapur, the walled city actually is seen to lie at an angle that is formed by the junction of the Erai and the Jharpat Rivers. It is surrounded by a battlement of more than 7 miles. The walls make up the main feature of the city. A parapet surrounds the walls. The city with its spacious areas and the pride of having some collieries around has a beautiful panorama of the outside. Some of the places we can see here are:
Tadoba National Park : This is situated 200m above sea level and is the ideal haven for all nature lovers. Also known as the “The Jewel of Vidarbha.”, this is the oldest national park in the state of Maharashtra. This park is also a Project Tiger Reserve since 1993.
Bhamragarh Wildlife Sanctuary : This is found in the Vidarbha region in the Chandrapur district of Maharashtra. The sanctuary is predominantly covered with woodland and with lot of patches of grasslands over the completely protected area.
Ramala Talav Garden : This place has been developed for children of all ages. There are some famous worship place like the Sri Mahakali temple, Jain Temple, Bhadrawati and Sonavati.
Villages and Towns :
Mul : This is the largest village in Chandrapur. The scenic beauty here is a remarkable sight and the Huma River flows near the city. This is found a little to the east of the village. The river flows in a shallow bed in Mul.
Ballarpur : This is a town, which is developing fast into a municipal town. This is located on the Chennai – Chandrapur railway line. It was considered a royal city earlier. Its splendor, glory of the past is still visible here. Today Ballarpur is more famous as the city of collieries. It has more than 2000 million tones of coal deposits and there are good qualities of teak and timber that are sold at Ballarpur. These are brought from the surrounding forest area.
Bhadrawati or Bhandak :
This is actually an ancient village in the Waroda tehsil. This is more known today for its religious importance in Jainism. There is the magnificent temple of Parsvanatha which people come to visit. Thus, the city is more known by the land of Parsvanatha and less for its historical importance of archaeological remains. The architectural remains are antique and evoke great interest in people.
Thus the superb imperial past, the magnificent glorious tales, the immensely successful present all lend beauty to the city of Chandrapur, the colliery. The sheer presence of a stupendous scenic beauty and the amazing combination of the traditional with the modern makes this place worth a visit at least once. As we leave, we think, “Beauty lies in the eyes of the tourist. Chandrapur is beautiful.”