What’s up, Raipuryas? Summer is here and everyone is “medium light brown” thanks to the scorching heat. Board exams are over and kids are super vella. Also, today is World Heritage Day! I know! History is drowsy! You may probably want to skip this page and go back to the habit of scrolling through the old and used-to-death three apps. But always be a smart local. So, buckle up to have a ride through the timeline of Raipur. All you PSC aspirants might already be aware, so “revision samajh ke padh lo”. Let’s begin! Raipur came into existence in the 9th century, but the peripheral areas around Raipur, which fall in the Raipur district and the nearby ones tell a much older story.
Initially, these regions were part of the Dakshina Kosala Kingdom, later considered under the Maurya Empire. Then, there was Emperor Samudragupt, the 4th century king, who conquered these regions and for the next two centuries, Raipur was under his domination. Then came the Sharabhpuriya kings. The Nalas followed; both of them controlled this region for a while. Later Sirpur based Somvanshi Dynasty decided to take over the regions and the mighty Mahashivgupta Balarjun took over, his mother, Rani Vasant built the famous Laxman Mandir. After the fall of this dynasty, the Kalachuris from Tumman ruled the area for a longer duration of time with Ratanpur as the capital.
I know it’s disappointing to know how our city was not the capital for all of these dynasties although Raipur was the capital of a branch of the Kalachuri dynasty. Finally came our man, King Ramachandra, who established the city of Raipur and subsequently, announced it as the capital of his kingdom. Another theory suggests that perhaps King Ramachandra’s son, Brahmdeo Rai, had established Raipur. His capital was Khalwatika (now Khallari). But whatever, our city was on. Later, when the poor chap, Amarsingh Deo, was dead, Raipur became the domain of Bhosle kings and it continued until the death of Raghuji III.
It was in the era of the Union Jack that the territory was assumed by the British government from Bhonslas of Nagpur and Chhattisgarh was declared a separate division as the Chhattisgarh Division of the Central Provinces with its headquarters at Raipur in 1852. A lot happened after that. Swami Vivekanand came. One of the earliest uprisings of the downtrodden castes was observed due to the initiative of Sunder Lalji Sharma. At the time of the independence of India, Raipur district was included in the Central Provinces and Berar. Then, Raipur grew and after fifty three years, when Chhattisgarh was declared a state, our Raipur became the capital. Rest is history we are all a part of.
What is special about Raipur is that it has been under the influence of a lot of dynasties, leaving Raipur with the imprints of diverse culture and varied archaeological trends. This is Raipur: history 101. If you wish to dive deep into its history, I suggest you take out some time from your monotonous routine and visit Mahant Ghasidas Sangrahalaya
By- Shivam Singh, The Free “Spirit ” Lancer