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Rajahmundry ( ) is a city and a municipal corporation in the East Godavarimarker district of Andhra Pradeshmarker state in Indiamarker. Located on the banks of the River Godavari, it is the Fifth Largest City in Andhra Pradesh. It is known as the Cultural Capital of Andhra Pradesh since it has a rich cultural past with a flourishing present and a promising future. It was a part of the Madras Province before Indian Independence. The city population is 315,251 and the population of the Agglomeration is 413,616 (as per 2001 census).

History

Its original name being Rajamahendrimarker or Rajamahendravarammarker, it was the second capital of many known Kannada Kingdoms. The Chalukya ruler Rajaraja Narendra ruled this city around 1022. The town has traces of 11th century fine palaces and fort walls. However, new archeological evidence suggests that the town may have existed far before the Chalukyas. The original name underwent a gradual metamorphosis with the name changed to Rajahmundry during the British rule.

It is the birth place of the Telugu language. It was here that Telugu was given grammar and a script by the poet Nannayya, without which it could not have been termed as a language.

Nannayya, the poet laureate also called 'Adi Kavi' (The first Poet) of Telugu belonged to this place. He, along with Tikkana and Yerrana, was responsible for the translation of Jaya, the Sanskrit version of Mahabharata, into Telugu. Kandukuri Veeresalingam, who was a social reformer and also the author of Rajashekhara Charithra, the first Telugu novel, was also from Rajahmundry. Shri Avasarala Rama Rao, a founding member of the Jana Sangh and leading lawyer in the 60s, was from Rajahmundry.

The town was one of the biggest cities in South India up to the 19th century. It was the centre of revolutions in Andhra Pradeshmarker during the British rule. Many of the major leaders before independence made this city a base for their activities.

Geography

Rajahmundry is located at . with an average elevation of 14 metres (45 feet). There is a lot of paddy and sugarcane cultivation in the area. River Godavari flows through the west of Rajahmundy.Rajahmundry has a tropical climate and therefore does not experience distinct seasons. The mean maximum temperature is 36 °C. The hottest season is from April to June, and the temperature ranges between 34 °C to 48 °C. The coolest months are December and January, and the maximum temperature ranges from 27 °C to 30°C in this season. The highest temperature recorded in the area was 51 °C in May, 2007.

The Rajahmundry traps which are part of the Deccan Trapsmarker are located on the Godavari river, on its west side banks, adjacent to Rajahmundry. These traps made the area interesting to geologists.

The distances from Rajahmundry to the major pilgrim places and other major cities



Demographics

 India census, Rajahmundry had a population of 653,987 with males and females sharing the population almost equally. Rajahmundry has an average literacy rate of 70%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy being 74%, and female literacy 66%. 10% of the population is under 6 years of age.


Climate

The climate is mostly hot and humid. The temperature ranges between 42°-50° during the months of May, June in summer. There is a lot of rain due to the monsoon and cyclonic storms in the Bay of Bengal. The months of November, December and January are comparatively pleasant with temperatures of 18C to 32C°.

Attractions

The biggest attraction in Rajahmundry is the river Godavari. The three bridges over the river, are the most attractive and lengthy bridges found in Andhra Pradesh. There are many beautiful ghats and parks on the river banks.Sir Arthur Cotton had great plans for Rajahmundry, he decided to build a anicut (dam) in Dowlaiswarammarker due to its proximity to a hill that suited his purpose. The dam consisted of four divisions: Dowlaiswaram Division, Ryali Branch Division, Madduru division and Vijjeswaram division. This was in all long and high. Asia's largest rail-cum-road bridge on the river Godavari linking Kovvurmarker and Rajahmundry is considered to be an engineering feat. The First Godavari Rail Bridge was built in the year 1897, under the supervision of Er. Walton, a British Engineer, across the River Godavari connecting East Godavari with West Godavari. Stretching for three kilometres, constructed with stone masonry and steel girders, this bridge served the trains plying between Madras (Chennai) and Howrah. With increased traffic in the freight and passenger sectors, a rail-cum-road bridge was built a quarter century ago across the downstream of the river. A third railway bridge was built recently as the bridge built in 1897 was found not suitable for railway trafic. The Dhowleswaram bridge across the Godavari is seven kilometres south of Rajahmundry. Rallabandi SubbaRao museum has a collection of artifacts including coins, sculpture, pottery, inscriptions and palm-leaf manuscripts.

It is also one of the Hindu pilgrimage sites. There are a number of temples here like the Kotilingalu (10 million Sivalingas) temple on the bank of the river Godavari. The city hosts holy congregations called the Pushkaram[93339] that takes place only once in every 12 years, which brings together millions of people from all over the country to take a holy dip in the river. The festival lasts for 12 days and people offer prayers and make offerings to their departed family members. It was celebrated last on August 2003. It was estimated that about 3.4 crores people took a holy dip here in Rajahmundry. In the time of Pushkaram, it is believed that if you take a holy dip you will get rid of all your sins and get blessing from God.

A huge Krishna temple has been constructed by the ISKCON foundation on the banks of Godavari. Popularly called as Gowthami Ghat, it is a major attraction for young people as a recreational center.

Papi kondalu and its surroundings located near Rajahmundry is a visual treat to the spectators because of its beautiful waterfalls at Perantala Palli.A boat cruise on the river Godavari to Papikondalu is a major attraction of this city.Another spot is Pattiseema. Pattiseema is known for its natural beauty. Much Tollywood (Telugu Film Industry) movie filming is done here. Pedapatnam Lanka is another beautiful place. It is called Konaseema because it is lush with greenery. Many sites in Konaseema are rich sources of oil and natural gas.

A very famous SWEET in coastal Andhra Pradesh, Pootareku is made in Atreyapuram, a village near Rajahmundry.

Notable Personalities

Sri Kandukuri Veeresalingam (1848-1919), a renowned social reformer, is widely considered as the man who first brought about a renaissance in the Telugu people and Telugu literature. He worked for the upliftment of women.Rajahmundry is also a place for great poets. The first poet of Telugu, 'Adikavi' Nannayya of the 11th century, hails from this city. Sri Chilakamarti Lakshmi Narasimha Pantulu, Vaddadi Subbaraya Kavi, 'Kavisarvabhowma' Sripada Krishnamurthi Sastry, Sri Madhunapantula Satyanarayana Sastry, Mallampalli Sarabheswara Sarma, Bulusu Venkata Rama Murthy, Kottapalli Satya Srimannarayana, Dr.Ravula Suryanarayana Murty are other poets of the 20th century are products of this city.The great Telugu literary art Astavadhanam was patronized by this city. Many Telugu poets like Kandukuri Veerasalingam, Challapilla Venkata Sastry, (Kavimani) Ms.Sunkara Mani Ramachandra rao,Bulusu Venkata Ramamurthy, Dr. Abbireddi Parayya Naidu, Mahadeva Mani etc. performed this art. 'Hindi Astavadhani' Dr. Chebolu Seshagiri Rao of Rajahmundry is the first person to introduce this great literary art in Hindi and he performed several Astavadhanams all over India.The Great Music Director in Telugu Film Industry Shri T.V.Raju is from Rajahmundry.

Hospitals

Swatantra Cancer Institute founded by eminent laproscopic surgeon Dr.Ganni Bhaskara Rao form the crux of the Medical arena in Rajahmundry with SV Heart Care Center which caters to the needs of heart patients of East Godavarimarker, West Godavarimarker and Khammammarker districts of Andhra Pradeshmarker.Dr. Datla Bhaskar Raju is a famous Pediatrician. In addition, Rajahmundry also plays host to Manasa Hospital,a psychiatric center. Likely, Rajahmundry Urological Nursing Home, run by Dr. V.Sarath Kumar, provides the best urological and andrological care. Medicare Hospital, offering services in Plastic Surgery, Microvascular and Hand surgery, Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Fertility Services is also prominent.

GSL Medical College and Hospital located 15km from Rajahmundry at Rajanagaram, is an established Teaching Hospital. Allu Ramalingayya Homeo College, located near Government Arts College is one of the prestigious medical colleges in Andhra Pradeshmarker.

Clothing and Gold Businesses

People from different places come here to purchase clothes. In and around Rajahmundry, there are many cooperative handloom houses where one can get fine quality of Sarees with different designs and borders, suiting and shirting in large varieties of cloths from cotton to silk. In fact Rajahmundry is the second biggest cloth market in India, next only to Mumbai. Of all the cloth makers around Rajahmundry, the Bandarulanka production unit is famous for sarees, with Gold/Silver border and hand woven.

Industrial Development

Besides natural beauty, Rajahmundry has equipoise development of Industrial sector. Rajahmundry also hosts a few corporates and multinationals as part of its industrial development, such as ITC Limited, ILTD Division, GlaxoSmithKline, Andhra Pradesh Paper Mills, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) etc. Rajahmundry is the head-quarters of ONGC's Krishna Godavari basin and which is now regarded as crux of ONGC's operations.

With thousand's of crores of rupees flowing in for the whole East Godavari district, this city is all set to be the center of industrialization. Due to the proximity of tobacco production, government of India has setup, Central Tobacco Research Institute (CTRI) which is largest of its kind in entire Asia.

Educational Institutions

Throughout history, Rajahmundry has been a well crafted city with educational jewels (Institutions) from the rule of Rajaraja Narendra to its glorious present. Recollect the song from the movie, "Andhra Kesari" which says "Vedamla Ghoshinche Godavari, Amara Dhamamla Bhasille Rajahmahendri". The Government Arts College, now called Government College (Autonomous)in Rajahmundry was founded more than 150 years ago and NAAC accredited (A). Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, former President of India worked at this college. The Institutes founded by the great reformer Kandukuri Veeresalingam Panthulu have now grown into large colleges and organisations. SKR Women's college is famous for its campus and teaching facilities. The B.Ed Training Institute is one of the oldest in India. St.Ann's (EM) School, Bala Vigjana Mandir (B.V.M.), Sri Sadguru Vidyalayam, Sri Satya Sai Gurukulam, Model High School etc. being among the better known schools.

The city has best Engineering Colleges GIET (Godavari Institute of Engineering and Technology), CIET (Chaitanya Institute of Engineering and Technology) are 2 colleges in Chaitanya Group. Shri 'Chaitanya' Satyanarayana Raju is the Founder Chairman of Chaitanya Group of Educational Institutions in Rajahmundry. Medical College (GSL Medical College), RIT (Rajmahendri Institute of Engineering and Technology), MNR Engineering College, Prakash's Pragathi Engineering College, two law colleges, a dental college and a number of degree colleges. An MBA college and an MCA college have also commenced from the academic year 2008. Sri Gurrala Satyendra Krishna Memorial Law College is the only private law college in the state accredited by NAAC. University of Petroleum and Energy Studies has its regional centre in the city. It is located in the GIET campus.The Central Tobacco Research Institute headquarters is situated in Rajahmundry.Regional Filaria Training and Research Centres is also located in Rajahmundry.

Transportation

  • Rajahmundry is well connected to all parts of the state. NH-5 passes by this place. With one national highway and two state highways, it has excellent road connectivity to all important places like Annavaram, Vijayawada, Visakhapatnam and Hyderabad. It is a main city for both the Godavari districts.
  • The city is also well connected by the railway network. Rajahmundry has one of the biggest railway station in Andhra Pradesh and is one of the top revenue generator for South Central Railways. All trains along the Howrah-Chennai route stop here. It is also connected by a number of trains from Hyderabad, the state capital.
  • Rajahmundry is accessible by air through flights from Chennai and Hyderabad. These 2 cities are connected by flights operated by Kingfisher Red. The airport is situated near Madhurapudi which is 10 km away from the heart of the city. The government has recently sanctioned an amount of rupees 200 crores for the installation of night landing facilities and construction of a new terminal building at the Rajahmundry airport.
  • The recent tourism developments by the government has made excellent platform for Rajahmundry to boast itself as water-way transport hub. Though currently the water way transport caters for select few purposes like pilgrimage, tourism etc., the government has huge plans for the future.


References

  1. Falling Rain Genomics, Inc - Rajahmundry
  2. ITC Ltd
  3. Glaxo Smith Kline
  4. Andhra Pradesh Paper Mills Ltd
  5. http://sgskmlawcollege.tripod.com
  6. CTRI Central Tobacco Research Institute
  7. Regional Filaria Training and Research Centre


External links



Picture Gallery

Image:Rail_bridge_godavari.jpg|Railway Bridge, Rajahmundry


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