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Nagpur History

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Nagpur Stamp 1702-2002 : depicts Vidhan Bhavan, the Samadhi of Raghuji Bhonsle - the benevolent ruler of Berar with Nagpur as his capital , a portrait of King Bhakt Buland Shah,  an Orange and an ancient coin

Ever wondered why our beloved Nagpur city is called so?

The Nag River, which is a tributary of the Kanhan River, flows in a serpentine path and so got its name, "Nag", the Marathi word for Cobra. The river flows through the old city of Nagpur and so the city derived its name from this river, 'Nag'+'pur'. "Pur" is common suffix given to cities, villages and towns across India, and is often simply translated "city".The seal of Nagpur Municipal Corporation depicts a cobra in the water of a river. Nagpur is famous for growing oranges from which it derives it's nickname Orange city.

Now lets get onto some history lessons:

The present city of Nagpur was founded in the early 18th century by Bhakt Buland, a Gond Prince of the Kingdom of Deogad in the Chhindwara District. Seeing the advantage of civilized life in Delhi, he started to build Nagpur as his new capital His successor Chand Sultand in the early 18th century by Bhakt Buland, a Gond prince of the kingdom of Deogad in the Chhindwara district. Seei continued the work. On Chand Sultan's death in 1739, disputes regarding succession arose and Raghuji Bhonsle, the Maratha governor of Berar, helped to restore the elder son to the throne. As the dissentions continued, Raghuji Bhonsle again intervened in 1743, and the control of Nagpur slowly passed on from the Gonds to the Marathas. It became the capital of the Bhonsles.

With the Bhonsle dynasty came the vast class of cultivators in Vidarbha. Raghuji's successors lost some territories to the Peshwas of Pune and the Nizam of Hyderabad. In 1803, Bhonsles (along with their allies Scindias [Shinde] of Gwalior) at Assaye and Argaon (Argaum). In 1811 Pindaris attacked Nagpur. Bhonsles again lost to the British in 1817 and Nagpur came under British influence. In 1853 Raghuji III died without an heir to his kingdom. As a result, the city lapsed into British control under Lord Dalhousie's Doctrine of Lapse. { This policy was one of the reasons which led to the Indian War of Independence [Sepoys' Mutiny : as referred to by the British] in 1857}

In 1861, Nagpur became the capital of the Central Provinces. The advent of the Great Indian Peninsula Railway (GIP) in 1867 spurred its development as a trade centre. After Indian independence, Nagpur became the capital of Madhya Bharat state (C.P. and Berar). In 1960, the marathi majority Vidarbha region was merged with the new state of Maharashtra and Nagpur was designated the second capital of Maharashtra state, alternating with Mumbai (Bombay) as the seat of the Maharashtra state legislature.

Source: Encyclopaedia Britannica


Following is the brief timeline chart of history of Nagpur.


10th Century A.D. -The name Nagpur appears for first time on record

Early 18th century A.D. - Nagpur city founded by the Gond king "Bakht Buland" of Devgad. He founded the city by joining the twelve small hamlets formerly known as "Rajapur Barasa" or "Barasta"

Nagpur becomes the capital of the Bhonsles.
1769 Nagpur burnt in 1769 and again partially burnt in 1811 by the Pendharis.
1817 The battle of Sitabuldi & Nagpur fought which secured British influence in these territories.
1853 Nagpur was incorporated into the British territory.
1854 Mr. Mansel takes charge of Nagpur as the first commissioner.
1861 Nagpur city becomes the capital of Central Provinces.
1867 First train steams out of the city.
1901 C.P. Club founded.
1911 The Hitavada a leading english daily launched.
1912 Foundation stone of Vidhan Sabha laid.
1923 Nagpur University founded.
1934 Gondwana Club founded, Nav Bharat a leading Hindi daily launched.
1947 AIR founded.
1950 Nagpur made capital of M.P. state.
1956 Boddhisatva Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar converts lakhs (Nearly 3,80,000) of oppressed people to Buddhism at Deeksha Bhoomi. (Every year Buddhist people from across the world, come to Nagpur - on Dhammachakra Pravartan Day (i.e. Ashoka Vijaya Dashmi)
1960 Nagpur passed onto Maharashtra State.

One of the black spot on the History of Nagpur is the "Gowari Massacre" (Gowari Hatyakand) which took place on November 23, 1994. Around 114 people were killed while more than 500 got injured in this worse stampede in history of Nagpur.

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