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East Godavari

East Godavari District is a district situated on the northeast of the state of Andhra Pradesh in India. Its district headquarters is Kakinada. The district is bounded on the north by Visakhapatnam District and the state of Orissa, on the northwest by Khammam District, on the east and south by the Bay of Bengal and on the west by West Godavari District. Rajahmundry is the largest city in the godavari districts. Rajahmundry is one of the well known business centre in Coastal Andhra.

History

Early Hindu kingdoms

The district, like the rest of the Deccan was under the Nandas and Mauryas in its early history. After the fall of the Mauryan Empire, the district was under the Sathavahanas until the third century under the famous poet king Hala. Coins found during excavations have revealed the rule of Gautamiputra Satakarni, Vasisthi-putra Pulumayi and Yajna Sri Satakarni. Gupta emperor Samudragupta invaded during the rule of both Pishtapura and Avamukta in the district in 350 A.D. Samudragupta's invasion was followed by the rule of the Mathara Dynasty from 375 to 500. The earliest known ruler of the dynasty was Maharaja Sakthi Varma.

The district passed into the hands of Vishnukundinas during the rule of Vikramendra Varma I during the 5th century. The records indicate that their domain extended over Visakhapatnam, West Godavari, Krishna and Guntur Districts in addition to East Godavari District. Indra Bhattaraka defeated the rulers of Vasistha Kula and re-established Vihsnukundina authority, but was shortly defeated by Kalinga armies. Indra Bhattaraka was followed to the throne by a few others, including Madha Varma III and Manchanna Bhattaraka, who tried to restore their kingdom. Madhava Varma III was the last important ruler of this family.

Chalukyas and Cholas

The Pulakesin II of Badami Chalukyas and his brother Kubja Vishnu Vardhana acquired Pistapura in the 7th century. The Eastern Chalukya dynasty, founded by Kubja Vishnu Vardhana, ruled at first form Pistapura, then from Vengi, and later from Rajahmundry. Many rulers held sway over the kingdom and their history is at times largely a record of disputes over succession. Chalukya Bhima I of this dynasty built a Shiva temple at Draksha Ramam. Jata Choda Bhima of Peda Kallu (Kurnool District) killed Danarnava of this dynasty and occupied Vengi in 973 A.D. Danarnava's two sons, Sakti Varma I and Vimala Aditya, fled from the kingdom and took refuge in the court of the Chola king Rajaraja Chola I. Rajaraja invaded Vengi on behalf of the sons of Danarnava and killed Jata Choda Bhima. Satya Raya of the Western Chalukyas of Kalyani did not like the Chola influence in Vengi and the area witnessed many wars between the Cholas and Chalukyas. After the death of Vijaya Aditya VII in 0175 A.D., the Eastern Chalukya dynasty came to an end.

Kulothunga Chola I (Rajendra Chalukya), rival of Vijay Aditya VII, fought along the sides of Cholas and established the Chalukya Cholas province. The district along with the rest of the Vengi kingdom became part of their empire. Major portions of the district were under Velanati Chodas, trustworthy chieftains to his. The famous rulers of this dynasty were Gonka I, Rajendra Choda I, Gonka II and Rajendra Choda II. Vikram Aditya vii of Western Chalukyas occupied this region for short period, but it was recovered by Chalukya Cholas and Velanti Chodas. Velanati chiefs also suppressed rebellions from Haihayas of Kona, Gonka II and Rudra of the Kakatiya dynasty.

Kakatiyas and Delhi Sultanate

Inscriptions at this region including the ones at Draksha Ramam in 13th century throw light on their history. Prola II of the Kakatiya dynasty declared independence from the western Chalukyas and became a subject of Chalukya Cholas. His son Rudra obtained the Godavari delta as gift from the Rajaraja II of Chalukya Cholas. Rudra's authority over the Godavari delta was challenged by the Velanadu Chodas. The Velanati king Rajendra Choda II sent an army under his minister Davana Preggada against Rudra. Rudra was succeeded by his younger brother Mahadeva who died in a conflict with the Yadavas of Devagiri. His son Ganapathi succeeded to the Kakatiya throne. Ganapathi defated Kalinga armies on the north, Pandyas of Madurai and Cholas with the help of Nellore Chodas. The Kakatiya power remained undisturbed in the Godavari region throughout the reign of Ganapathi and her daughter Rudrama devi. Pratap Rudra ascended the throne in 1295 and faced many attacks from Sultans of Delhi. After his defeat by Muhammad-bin-Tughluq in 1323, the district came under the rule of the Delhi Sultnate. Muhammad-bin-Tughluq divided South India into five provinces and appointed governors.

Musunuri Nayaks, Reddy's and other Hindu Kingdoms

Delhi sultans faced rebellions from the confederacy of local chiefs under the authority of Prolaya of the Musunuri Nayaks clan. The Reddis of Addanki and the Recherla Velamas of Rachakonda actively helped him. Warangal was liberated and Telugu land enjoyed freedom for fifty years. Musunuri Kapaya Nayaka appointed his relatives Toyyeti Anavota Nayaka and Mummadi Nayaka (Korukonda) as governors in Godavari region. Mummadi Nayaka married the niece of Kapaya Nayaka. Mummadi Nayaka lived till 1388. He had three sons who ruled for a period of 40 years and later they were reduced to submission by the Reddies of Kondaveedu and their principality was merged in the kingdom of Kondaveedu. Subsequently, Narasimha Deva IV of Kalinga succeeded in conquering this region, but was repulsed by Anavota Reddy of Rajahmundry. He was succeeded by Anavema Reddy and Kumaragiri of the same dynasty.

Kumaragiri fought many wars with the Racherlas of Rachakonda and the Kalinga rulers. He sent his general Kataya Vema along with Prince Anavota to conquer the eastern region. This resulted in the annexation of a large tract in the north as far as Simhachalam. The newly acquired territory was annexed to the Reddi Kingdom and constituted into a separate province called the eastern kingdom. Prince Anavota ruled this province with Raja-mahendra-varam as his capital. He died a premature death around 1395 and Kataya Vema, the general and brother-in-law of Kumar Giri, was given Rajamahendra Rajya in appreciation of the services rendered by him to the State. Kataya Vema's departure to Raja-mahendra-varam led to the seizure of the throne of Kondaveedu by force by Peda Komati Vema.

Peda Komati Vema's authority was defined by Kataya Vema. Kataya Vema was also involved in conflict with Eruva chief Annadeva Choda, who managed to occupy a large portion of the Rajamahendra Rajya. He was, however, defeated and driven back by Kataya Vema. Later, Kataya Vema died in a battle with Anna Deva Choda. After his death, Allada Reddi placed Kataya Vemas' son Komaragiri on the throne of Rajamahendravaram and ruled the kingdom as his regent. Komarigiri died a premature death. Allada Reddi ruled this region till his death in 1420. About 1423, the Vijayanagara ruler Deva Raya II defeated Vira Bhadra, who was then ruling this kingdom and reduced it to subjection.

At Kondaveedu, Racha Vema succeeded Peda Komati Vema to the throne. His rule was very oppressive, and he received little support from his subjects when the Gajapatis of Orissa and Rayas of Vijayanagar invaded the kingdom. Kapileswara Gajapati crushed the Reddi power and annexed the Rajamahendra Rajya to his dominion.

After the death of Kapileswara Gajapati in 1470, there was a fight between his sons Hamvira and Purushottma for succession. Hamvira succeeded in occupying the throne with the help of Bahmanis but he could not retain it for long. Purushottama overthrew Hamvira and tried to reconquer Rajahmundry and other places. But Muhammad Shah III lead the forces to Rajahmundry. This battle, However, ended with the conclusion of peace treaty. After the death of Muhammad Shah III, Purushottama Gajapathi overran the whole of the Godavari-Krishna doab and drove the Bahmani forces as far south as Kondaveedu. Purushottama was succeeded by his son Prataparudra. The Vijayanagar monarch Krishna Deva Raya invaded his kingdom and brought Rajahmundry under subjugation. However, a treaty was concluded wherein Pratapa Rudra agreed to give his daughter in marriage to Krishna Deva Raya in return of the territory north of the Krishna conquered by Krishna Deva Raya.

Later Muslim Kingdoms

Taking advantage of the disturbed conditions, the Qutb Shahi ruler of Golconda, Sultan Quli Qutb Shah, invaded the coastal region and took possession of Rajahmundry and the neighbouring kingdoms. Sultan Quli was murdered and he was succeeded to the throne by his son Jamshid Qutb Shah and then by his grand son Subhan Qutb Shah. During his reign, Ibrahim Qutb Shah had to ward off challenges from Shitab Khan and Vidyadhar. The last ruler of this dynasty was Abdual Hasan Tana Shas, who ruled from 1672 to 1687.

During this period, the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb brought most of southern India under his control. Aurangzeb conquered the sultanate of Golconda in 1687, and Golconda, including East Godavari District, became one of the twenty-two provinces of the Mughal Empire. Aurangzeb appointed viceroys to carry out the administration of these provinces. The Nizam-ul-Mulk (viceroy) of Golconda looked after the administration through military officers called Fauzdars. The Mughal emperor Farrukhsiyar appointed Asaf Jah as the Nizam-ul-Mulk of the Deccan. He was, however, replaced by Husian Ali Khan, and during the time of emperor Muhammad Shah, Asaf Jah invaded the Deccan, defeated and killed Mubariz Khan in the battle of Shakar Khera in 1724 and ruled the Deccan as Nizam of Hyderabad.

The Nizam-ul-Mulk's death in 1748 led to a war of succession between his son Nasir Jung and his grandson Muzaffar Jung. The French and the British took different sides each. The dispute ended with the accession of Salabat Jung, with the help of the French General Bussy. General Bussy was, however, summoned to the south by Lally, the new Governor-General of the French possessions in India. As soon as he left, Pusapati Ananda Gajapati Raju, the new Raja of Vizianagaram, invited the English to come and occupy the Northern Circars. The tussle that ensued between the French and the English ended with the French losing all possessions in Northern Circars.

Salabat Jung was subsequently deposed by his brother Nizam Ali Khan, who leased out Rajahmundry and Chicacole to Hasan Ali Khan. Lord Robert Clive, entered into negotiations with the Mughal Emperor Shah Alam, and obtained a firman ceding the Northern Circars to the British East India Company in August 1765, but it was kept a secret until March 1766. The fort of Kondapalli was seized by the British, and General Cillaud was sent to Machilipatnam to undertake military operations, if necessary. The Nizam also made brisk preparations for war. War was prevented by the signing of a treaty on November 12, 1766 by which the Company, in return for occupying the Circars, undertook to maintain troops for the Nizam's assistance.

The Zamindars came into prominence during the period preceding the transfer of the district to the British. The Zamindars of Rampa, Peddapuram, Pithapuram, Kota and Ramchandrapuram were the important zamindars of this region.

British rule, 1768-1947

By a second treaty, signed on March 1 1768 the Nizam acknowledged the validity of Shah Alam's grant and resigned the Circars to the Company, receiving as a mark of friendship an annuity of 50,000. Finally, in 1823, the claims of the Nizam over the Northern Circars were bought outright by the Company, and they became a British possession. The Circars were incorporated into Madras Presidency, and Godavari District was constituted, which included present-day East Godavari and West Godavari districts.

Since Indian independence, 1947-present

After India's independence in 1947, the former Madras Presidency of British India became India's Madras State. In 1953, the northern districts of Madras state, including Godavari District, became the new state of Andhra Pradesh.

Tourism

East Godavri has a tremendous potential to become a major tourist centre in the country. The sight of the river Godavari piercing the eastern ghats with great turns and the forests surrounding the river forming a beautiful green carpet on the hills is a delightful sight.

  • A trip from Rajahmundry to Papi kondalu.
  • Trip to Maredumilli, Seethapalli, Tekuru from Rajahmundry.
  • Semi rain forest, deciduous forests, wild life (Cheetah, Tiger, wild buffalo, deer etc), water falls, streams, cofee plantations, bamboo forest, ghat roads, hills.
  • Maredumilli 75 km from Rajahmundry
  • Konaseema
  • Annavaram
  • Kakinada (port city)
  • Amalapuram
  • Godilanka

Transport

East Godavari is well connected through Rail, Road, Water and Air. The National Highway 5 connecting Chennai and Howrah passes through this district. Rajahmundry and Samarlakota are the railway junctions in the district. The Chennai to Howrah rail line also passes through this district. The district has an airport at Madhurapudi(Rajahmundry Rural), which is 10 km from Rajahmundry and 65 km from Kakinada. There are regular flights from Rajahmundry to Hyderabad, Chennai, Vijayawada etc. Kakinada has sea port which is predicted to be a potentially important port after Chennai, Paradip and Visakhapatnam along the east coast of India.

Government

It is the only district to possess two municipal corporations. They are Kakinada and Rajahmundry

The district is divided into 5 Revenue Divisions and 60 revenue mandals among which 58 are rural and 2 are urban. The district has 57 Mandal Praja Parishads and 1,011 Gram Panchayats and nine Municipalities and Municipal Corporations. Total number of villages in the district is 1,379.

As per G.O.Ms.No.31, Revenue (Registration & Mandals) Department, Dated 05-06-2002 a new Rural Mandal Routhulapudi (44 villages) with head quarters at Routhulapudi was formed by transferring certain villages from Sankhavaram (12 villages), Kotananduru (31 villages) and Tuni (1 village) Mandals, there by making total number of Mandals to be 60.

Subdivisions (Mandals)

The five revenue divisions are Kakinada, Rajahmundry, Peddapuram, Rampachodavaram and Amalapuram and they consist of 60 revenue mandals in total.

  1. Addateegala
  2. Ainavilli
  3. Alamuru
  4. Allavaram
  5. Amalapuram
  6. Ambajipeta
  7. Anaparti
  8. Atreyapuram
  9. Biccavolu
  10. Devipatnam
  11. Gandepalle
  12. Gangavaram
  13. Gokavaram
  14. Gollaprolu
  15. I.Polavaram
  16. Jaggampeta
  17. Kadiam
  18. Kajuluru
  19. Kakinada (Rural)
  20. Kakinada (Urban)
  21. Kapileswarapuram
  22. Karapa
  23. Katrenikona
  24. Kirlampudi
  25. Kotananduru
  26. Kothapalle
  27. Kothapeta
  28. Malikipuram
  29. Mamidikuduru
  30. Mandapeta
  31. Maredumilli
  32. Mummidivaram
  33. P.Gannavaram
  34. Pamarru
  35. Pedapudi
  36. Peddapuram
  37. Pithapuram
  38. Prathipadu
  39. Rajahmundry (Rural)
  40. Rajahmundry (Urban)
  41. Rajanagaram
  42. Rajavommangi
  43. Ramachandrapuram
  44. Rampachodavaram
  45. Rangampeta
  46. Ravulapalem
  47. Rayavaram
  48. Razole
  49. Routhulapudi
  50. Sakhinetipalle
  51. Samalkota
  52. Sankhavaram
  53. Seethanagaram
  54. Thallarevu
  55. Thondangi
  56. Tuni
  57. Uppalaguptam
  58. Y.Ramavaram
  59. Yeleswaram

Demographics

The district had a population of 4,901,420 of which 23.50% is urban as of 2001.

Literates

Total Male Female Literacy Rate
Rural: 2050482 1100881 949601 62.52%
Urban: 762636 406107 356529 75.11%
Total: 2813118 1506988 130613 65.49%

Child Population 0-6 Age Group

Total Male Female Sex Ratio
Rural: 456003 231005 224998 97.4%
Urban: 121418 60911 60507 99.3%
Total: 577421 291916 285505 97.8%

Education

There are numerous educational institutes. Few of the prominent ones include:

  • Govt.Arts College, Rajahmundry (established 150 years ago).
  • Maharani College, Peddapuram.
  • St.John's College of Education, Sanitarium, Visranthipuram, Korukonda Road, Rajahmundry.
  • Sri Saraswathi Vidya Vihar,Razole.
  • S.K.B.R college in Amalapuram.

Resources

East Godavari is famous for agriculture and is the most prosperous district in the state and is the second richest district in the country. Statistically it is a potential hinterland for oil and natural gas reserves in the country as many areas are identified as richest sources for oil and Natural gas in Godavari basin.

References

External links

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