Vijayawada ( ) ( ) earlier
known as Bezawada, is the third largest city in Andhra Pradesh, India, located on
the banks of the Krishna River and
bounded by the Indrakiladri Hills on the West and the Budameru
River on the North.
Vijayawada literally translates to "The
Place of Victory". Its prominence as a major trading and business
center has earned it the title of the "Business Capital of Andhra
Pradesh”. Situated along the Chennai-Howrah and Chennai-Delhi
Railway route, this is the 3rd largest railway junction in the
city is located in the Krishna District, about from the state capital Hyderabad.
Lying in the rich coastal delta of the
state, the cuisine of Vijayawada is spicy and deliciously
discovery of Stone Age Artifacts remains along the banks of the
river from Machilipatnam to Nagarjuna Sagar
indicates that this area was inhabited at that time.
Vijayawada is also a centre of Andhra Politics, and is a business
center. The Chalukyas of Kalyan
conquered this place, and the famous Chinese Xuanzang
(Hsuan-tsang) had visited this place in
639 AD when Buddhism was at its zenith in the region. Kings Choda Gangadeva
and Ananga Bhimadeva of the Eastern Ganga Dynasty in the 12th
century whose capital was in modern Bhubaneswar and who built the Lingaraj temple had re-annexed considerable
part of modern Andhra region and marched up to Godavari but could
not cross the wide river bed.
He established a town 'Vijaya
Bahuda' which means 'return after winning' which became known as
According to Vishnu Puranam, King Madhava Varma built the kingdom
of Vijayawada and he was the ancestor of Poosapati Kings of
Vizianagaram. He also built the Holy Temple of Kanaka Durga in
During the British Raj the city experienced significant growth. In
particular, the completion of the Prakasam Barrage in 1959, and
railway bridge on the Krishna River have helped the region expand
its agriculture and commercial base. Vijayawada Railway station is
one of the busiest railway junctions in India. The regions around
the city have fertile soil and are irrigated by the river
- A legend narrates that during Dwapara Yuga, Arjuna (the Pandava prince in the Hindu epic Mahabharata) performed penance for Lord Shiva's Darshan, to
gain Pasupathashtra in this location. Lord Shiva, along with
Parvathi, appeared in the form of a tribal
couple and blessed Arjuna.
- Another legend states that Durga (the
Hindu Goddess) rested here after killing a Rakshasa (demon) and since she was victorious
(Vijaya), the place got its name, Vijayawada.
- Another legend states that this place was known as
Vijaya-vatica, which translates to "Land of Victory" but this
became "Vijayawada" over the ages.
- Another legend states that "Krishnaveni" (River Krishna)
requested Arjuna to make a passage to the Bay of Bengal. Arjuna
made a hole (Bezzam) through the mountains. Hence the name
Bejjamwada came into existence. Bejjamwada became Bezawada over a
period of time. In the 19th century, Bezawada was renamed as
Vijayawada is bounded by the Indrakiladri Hills on the west and the
Budameru River on the north. The Northern, North-Western, and
South-Western parts of the city are covered by a low range of
hills, while the Central, South-Western and North-Western parts are
covered by rich and fertile agriculture lands with three major
irrigation canals. The topography
Vijayawada is flat, with a few small to medium sized hills. The
runs through the city.
These hills are part of the Eastern
cut through by the Krishna river. They have very low
elevation compared to the average elevation of the ghats. Three
originating from the north side of the
Eluru, Bandar and Ryves, run through the city. Vijayawada is the
only city in the world with two rivers, Krishna, Budameru
, and three canals. Buckingham
Canal originates from the south side of the reservoir.
Due to the presence of the
the soil around here is
very fertile and cultivated intensively.
The climate is tropical, with hot summers and moderate winters. The
peak temperature reaches in May-June, while the winter temperature
is 20-27 C. The average humidity is 78% and the average annual
rainfall is 103 cm. Vijayawada gets its rainfall
from both the south-west monsoon
and north-east monsoon
. It's nicknamed "Blazewada" for its
scorching summer heat by the Britishers.
View from a hill
The Kondapalli Killa
About 11 km from the western outskirts of Vijayawada lies the
Kondapalli reserve forest, spread over . The forest provides
Vijayawada with a "green lung". This pristine forest is home to
leopards, wild dogs, jackals, wild boar, wolves etc. hills produce
a soft wood is used for preparing toys of Kondapalli. They are of
varied designs such as dancing toys, playing toys and so on.
There are several processes involved in the making of Kondapalli
Toys. In fact it is very interesting to watch these beautiful toys
being made. The craftsmen first carve the Puniki wood to give it
the shape of a toy. One is amazed to learn that this white colored
wood is specially grown in and around the village of Kondapalli for
producing the Kondapalli Toys. The wood is stuffed with sawdust and
tamarind seed paste.
When the right shape has been given by chipping the surface, the
toys are painted. The Kondapalli Toys which are made for the
international markets are painted with the traditional vegetable
dyes. If the Kondapalli Toys are made for the domestic market, oil
paints are generally used and if they are being made for a special
occasion then enamel paints are used. The colored toys look very
beautiful and no one can resist the temptation to purchase one or
two as ornamental pieces.
Vijayawada is the third largest city in Andhra Pradesh after
Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam. In the year 2009 the estimated
population of the agglomeration is approximately 1149738.Source
The city of Vijayawada is run by the Vijayawada Municipal
Corporation .The Municipality of Vijayawada (Bezawada) was
constituted on 1st APR, 1888 and was upgraded as a selection grade
municipality in the year 1960. The municipality was upgraded to a
corporation in 1981. With the merger of Gunadala, Patamata and
Bhavanipuram village panchayats and two villages payakapuram and
Kundavari kandrika in the corporation in 1985. More than 200000
people in metro reside outside corporation limits. Many areas on
outskirts or yet to be merged into corporation limits. The total
area of the corporation is and the population of the whole city
(along with Vijayawada Sub-Urban and Vijayawada Rural) is close to
The city is divided into 59 political wards. An elected body headed
by the Mayor performs the Administration of the Corporation. The
Commissioner acts as the executive head, and oversees the day to
day functioning of the local body. The commissioner who is a (IAS)
officer of Joint collector rank is appointed by the state
government. It has a dedicated Sub-Collector's office for
Administration of State and Central Government Programmes. The
staff strength of the corporation is just over 5,000. The
Vijayawada City Police is headed by a Police Commissioner, who is
an Indian Police Service
officer of DIG rank.
The region around the city has fertile soil and irrigation is
supported by the river Krishna and its canals. Major crops include
. Vijayawada is famous for automobile
body building, garment
small scale industries
. Small scale automotive industries
'Jawahar Autonagar', was the largest automobile township in
for sometime. The main markets
are situated in the old city (popularly
known as One Town) and near Besant Road. It is estimated that
of garment business takes place in the
Vastralatha building alone in One Town daily. Garments are mainly
sold in Besant Road
and Governor Pet,
but now this activity is also happening in the malls that have come
up in Labbipet and M.G. Road areas. The city has many wholesale
businesses. They include garments, iron market, pulses
, and other
edible products, fancy markets, fertilizers
, mango exports
, pharmacy, metal
on. The city is one of the busiest and crowded places due to its
strong commercial hold in the entire state.Vijayawada is called the
Commercial Capital of Andhra Pradesh state, for it provides the
right environment for all the agricultural and industrial goods to
be transported in/out and traded in one single place. With the
upcoming SEZs in IT and textile, Vijayawada's economy will grow
further in the near future.
is the busiest railway junction in
South India, and is the second biggest
junction in India.
fact that Vijayawada is well connected through rail and road keeps
it the main hub
of commercial activities.
The city has a strong educational infrastructure and the IT
industry continues to grow. There are about 32 IT firms in
Vijayawada, which generated revenues of approximately Rs.56 crores
(Rs 56,00,00,000) in 2007-2008 fiscal year. Some of the IT
companies here are Efftronics, PB Systems, Gapvak technologies and
The UX Group. The APIIC is setting up an IT park/SEZ at Gannavaram,
20 km from the city, next to the airport, to facilitate the
growth of the IT industry in this region. The construction firm,
L&T, was awarded the contract for developing this IT park with
a budget of Rs 300 crores. The IT park can facilitate employment of
up to 10,000 IT professionals. Another IT park with an area of is
being set up by VGTM-UDA in Mangalagiri.
Vijayawada is an important link connecting the three regions of
Andhra Pradesh and is a major transit point. Two National Highways,
the NH-5 from Chennai to Kolkata and the NH-9
from Machilipatnam to Mumbai pass through
the city connecting it to other parts of the country.
Another National highway 221 connects the city to Jagdalpur in
Madhya Pradesh state. It is connected to other areas of the state,
by state highways and district roads.
domestic airport located at Gannavaram,
about 20 km from the city, connects Vijayawada to Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Rajahmundry and Dubai.
along the Chennai - Howrah and Chennai
- Delhi rail route,
Vijayawada Junction is the 3rd
biggest railway junction in the
world and is the largest on the South Central Railway network.
Vijayawada junction had been given A-1 status by the central
government. Krishna canal junction, Madhuranagar,
Gunadala, Rayanapadu, Kondapalli,Nidamanuru, Gannavaram, Mustabada and Ramavarappadu are the other railway stations in the city.
Vijayawada is the busiest railway junction in South India, and is
second biggest junction in India. It has 10 platforms.It is the
only railway station in south India that has escalators.
Vijayawada is well connected to the rest of the country by National
Highways: NH-5 and NH-9. Good motorways connect Vijayawada to all
places within the state and also with major cities in India.
Transport by road from Vijayawada to all the places of interest is
available in the form of Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport
) buses.There are many
buses that run between Vijayawada and Hyderabad 24 hours-a-day
and365 days-a-year, unlike the rest of transportation in the
Local commute within the city is a breeze as all major streets are
connected with the Local Public Bus Transit (City Buses) operated
by APSRTC. Motor driven (auto) rickshaws and manual driven (cycle)
rickshaws are the other alternative means of transport within
Vijayawada. Private lorries (trucks), cars and two-wheelers
(motorcycles and scooters) abound as well. Public and private bus
operators provide transport services to various parts of the
country.Vijayawada also has one of the biggest bus terminals in the
country. It was inaugurated on 23 September 1990 and was called
Telugu Satavahana Prayana Pranganam
. Vijayawada is
also called the City that never sleeps
with reference to
its busy railway junction.
There are business groups like the Sindhi
in the city. They are
concentrated in One-Town, the old town-nucleus. There are Tamil
. There is a Tamil association
operating here.Similarly the Malayalees too have got their cultural
organizations in Vijayawada. A few students of Tibetan
origin come to the city to study here. There a even many Nepal
students studying in andhra loyola college,vja.
Vijayawada, also called as "Vidyala wada" (Place of Education),
occupies a large amount of the educational infrastructure of Andhra
Pradesh. The city was named as "The Educational Sahara" by a
foreign ambassador earlier during the century.
Education in the city is implemented by both the government and the
private institutions. Vijayawada Municipal Corporation takes care
of the government educational institutions.
Following are statistics of government schools:
- High Schools: 22(Including 1 Urdu Medium, 2
Schools both English & Telugu Media)
- Upper Primary Schools: 15 (Including Urdu Media) ( 3 Urdu
- Elementary Schools: 52+10= 62 (10 Urdu Media, 2 English
- Students: 30,000
- Teachers: 700
There are also “aided” schools in Vijayawada, meaning schools with
both government and private partnerships as well, such as the
Gollapudi high-school. Government schools are located at different
places like the Jammichettu center, the Patamata high-school and
Suryarao Peta, to name a few. Private schools are scattered all
over the city. A majority of them implement the Andhra Pradesh
State Syllabus for their students.The students, after studying
their 10th class, take the Public Examination, which is equivalent
of the school-leaving certificate. There are only a few schools
accredited to the Central Board of Secondary Education in the
city-meaning their class Ten students have to take the All India
Secondary School Examination(AISSE) for their school-leaving
NTR Univ. of Health Sciences
The first college built in Vijayawada was SRR & CVR college.
Andhra Loyola College
established in the year 1953 with Rev. Francis Theo Mathias, SJ as
its first Principal. KBN College is another popular college in
Vijayawada. The first private engineering college in Andhra
Pradesh, V R Siddhartha Engineering College, is located here. The
South Indian branch of the School of Architecture and Planning has
been allocated to Vijayawada.
The NTR University of Health Sciences is the first medical
university in India. It is a public university in the city of
Vijayawada. It started functioning from 1 November 1986.
Vijayawada is known as the political capital of Andhra Pradesh.
Factionisam prevails here with lot of resulting violence. The major
political parties here are Telugu
, and the Communist Party of India
. Lok Satta
and Praja Rajyam
are relatively new parties.
Earlier it was a strong center for Congress (I) and Communist Part
of India (Marxist). With the entry of Telugu Desam Party
, the scenario has
changed. After Lok Satta
and Praja Rajyam
parties entered the political
scene, the political equations in Vijayawada changed yet
Vijayawada has three main assembly constituencies namely Vijayawada
West,Vijayawada Central and Vijayawada East. Parts of the city are
also present in Penamaluru, Mylavaram and Gannavaram assembly
constituencies. Vijayawada has one Lok
Hotels and Movie Theatres
The City of Victory
is also well-known for its hotels and
movie theatres. The star hotels of the city include The Gateway
Hotel, Hotel Fortune Murali Park, Hotel Manorama, Hotel D.V.Manor,
Hotel Mamata which are situated on M.G.Road, Hotel Ilapuram in
Gandhinagar and Hotel Swarna Palace on Karl Marx Road.
There are many movie theaters in and around Vijayawada. The Gandhi
nagar area has some of the best movie theaters in the city. It is
located very close to the railway station. Some of the theaters
include INOX, Alankar, Swarna Palace, Venkateswara Palace,
Annapurna, Sakuntala, Apsara, Raj and Yuvaraj. Many exhibitors in
Vijayawada are now leering to the view that only multiplexes can
fetch them good returns. There are 25 new multiplex screens about
to come in Vijayawada. Big names like IMax,
Prasads, PVR, Sringar and Adlabs are coming
to Vijayawada soon.
Vijayawada is an important commercial, political, and cultural
center in Andhra Pradesh. The print & electronic media
industries have a major presence here.
English newspapers The Hindu, Deccan Chronicle, The New Indian
Express and a large number of Telugu newspapers/magazines such as
Eenadu, Andhra Jyothi, Sakshi, Andhra Bhoomi, Andhra Prabha, Surya,
Visalandhra and Prajasakti have editions here.
Prominent journalists from this city include Mutnuri Krishna Rao, C
Raghavachari, Moturi Hanumantha Rao, Turlapati Kutumba Rao, Nanduri
Rammohana Rao, Garapati Upendra Babu, Syed
, AM Khan Yazdani, Kasinaduni Nageswara Rao Pantulu,
Khadar Mohiuddin, Muhammad Vazeeruddin, R Ramprasad, K Sriramulu
and Kuchi Gopalakrishna.
The All India Radio(AIR) has one of its AIR stations here with
three transmitters ( 100 KW MW; 1 kW MW VB and 1 kW FM
(Int. set up)). The FM radio channels broadcast in the city include
AIR Rainbow Krishnaveni FM (102.2 MHz), Radio Mirchi
FM (98.3 MHz) and RED FM
Daily 6.45am All India Radio vijayawada Regional News Unit
broadcasting 10min State News. 10min Reginol News in afternoon from
1.20pm to 1.30pm which covers costal Andhra & Rayalasema.
Koppula SubbaRao,the Senior News Reader in Telugu still working in
Vijayawada AIR. Now he have 60yrs. Still his voice is so
Vijayawada has its own
Doordarshan station, which is planning to offer more programs.
Telecasting in the city is carried out mainly by two means: The
Cable TV and the Direct-To-Home Satellite TV. Different cable TV
providers in the city are C-Channel, Sity Cable and Local TV.
Film and Literature
'Popular Film Personalities
Many popular and successful film personalities hail from here. They
include, N T Rama Rao
Ramakrishnaiah Pantulu, a discipline of Susarla Dhakshinamurti -
Musician, Great musicians - Mangalampalli Balamuralikrishna,
Balanthrapu Rajinikanthi Rao, Annavarapu Ramaswami, Pemmaraju Surya
Rao.Dr.Kasinadhuni Viswanath, a legend in the field of Indian
cinema hails from a village called Peddapulivarru, but settled in
Vijayawada.Legendary lyricist, Veturi Sundaram Murthy, is a native
of Peddakallepalli in Krishna district and has settled down in
Vijayawada. 'Sirivennela' Seetharama Sastry - Popular
Ghantasala Venkateswara Rao from Diviseema is also associated with
Vijayawada as a singer. Film dialogue writer and director, the late
'Hasya Brahma' Jandhyala, is a very popular figure.Popular Writer
"Malladi Venkata Krishna Murthy" is also from here.Kota Srinivasa
Rao - Versatile actor turned politician, Ravi Teja - actor, Rambha,
Laya - Actress, Gundu Hanumatha Rao - Actor, Girija Sri Bhagawan -
Writer, C. Kowsalendra Rao and Hari Gopalakrishna
'Writers and Social Workers
Vijayawada is a spectrum of many a literary and social activities.
Here live a number of noted contributors to literature and social
ideology. To cite a few of them M.D. Dinesh Nair, a well noted
lecturer in English who is one of the most popular poets in English
on www.poemhunter.com lives in Vijayawada.
Vijayawada is one of the earliest and still
continuing publishing centers in Andhra Pradesh.
Vague estimates say about 90% of the total
volume of books in the state are printed
published from here. The annual book festival has been quite
popular with publishers from around the country participating
The Vijayawada Book Festival is organized every year and is second
largest book festival in the country after Kolkata. This book
exhibition starts on every new year day (January 1), and lasts for
is the most popular sport, with
National level cricket matches played at Indira Gandhi Stadium. A
new international stadium is being built in a site in Mangalagiri
which will replace the local stadium as the venue for international
and Ranji matches. Badminton
also popular. The latest fad seems to be Archery.
Famous sports personalities from Vijayawada include:
- Kanaka Durga
Temple: One of the most popular temples in Andhra
Pradesh, it is located on Indrakeeladri hill overlooking the city
as well as the River Krishna. One can either motor up the ghat road
or take to the steps on foot. Inscriptions of different dynasties
are found in the temple. During Dasara Festival, thousands of
devotees from the city and its environs throng the temple after a
holy dip in the River Krishna close by the temple.
It was built after 12th century by Maharaja Poosapati Madhava
, the ancestor of Vijayanagaram Poosapati Kings,
according to Vishnu Puranam. He is the builder of Modern Vijayawada
- Old Sivaalayam
Temple: One of the popular temples in Vijayawada which
was located at Canal Road, Vijayawada.
- Mangalagiri: Located in Guntur District, 12 km from Vijayawada is the renowned temple
of Lord Narasimha in Mangalagiri, on a hillock. The unique
feature of this temple is that the mouth of the idol accepts half
the quantity of panakam (jaggery dissolved in water)
offered by devotees, irrespective of the size of the vessel.
- Amaravati: Amaravati
in guntur district, formerly called as Dhanyakataka and
Andhranagari, is one of the most important Buddhist sites in the
country. Acharya Nagarjuna constructed the country's largest stupa
here, 2,000 years back. Amaravati is considered the most sacred
pilgrim center for Buddhists in South India. It also has an
- Hinkar Thirtha (Jain Temple), Mangalagiri: A
Jain temple here with great artistic work, it is slated to be the
biggest Jain temple in the region.
- Hazarat Bal Mosque: A holy relic of the
Prophet Mohammed is kept here which is displayed once a year. A
large number of non-Muslims too join the celebrations.
- Gunadala Matha Shrine: In 1925, Rf. Arlati,
the Rector of St. Joseph's Orphanage at Gunadala, installed a
statue of Our Lady and later a church was built and consecrated in
1971, now popularly known as St. Mary's church. Since then the
Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes became an annual event here, attended
by lakh's of people. The church is situated on a hillock on the
eastern side of the city.
- Marakata Rajarajeswari Temple: Unique temple
of goddess completely built with stone with intricate architecture
symbolizing SRICHAKRA - the abode of mother Goddess.This temple is
located in the premises of Sri Ganapati Sachidananda Swamy Ashram
in Patamata. The ambience in the temple premises gives a pleasant
and peaceful feel to the visitors.
- Subramanya Swamy Temple: One of the most
popular temples in Vijayawada, it is located on a hill
(Indrakeeladri) overlooking the city as well as the River Krishna.
One can take to the steps on foot. During Skanda Shashti Festival,
thousands of regular devotees will come from Tamil Nadu. This
Temple is being maintained by Iddipilli Family.
- Sri Nagarala Sri Maha Lakshmi Ammavaru Temple:
One of the most popular temples in Vijayawada, it is located in the
area of Chiitinagar. During Dasara Festival, thousands of devotees
from the city visit this temple. It is maintained by the Nagaralu
- Chilakalapudi Panduranga
Swamy Temple: One of the most popular temples Nearby
Vijayawada. It was situated in Machilipatnam the district
headquarters & 70km from Vijayawada. Here The God Vishnu called
as Panduranga Swamy. Here The Statue of Panduranga Swamy is as same
as look like in Pandaripuram MAHARASTRA.
Prakasham Barrage at Vijayawada across
the Krishna River
- Manginapudi Beach: Located about 70 km
caves: Located in Guntur district, five kilometres
from Vijayawada, these caves are said to have been carved in the
7th century A.D. Buddhist monks used this two-storeyed cave
structure as a rest house during the monsoon. A huge monolith of
Lord Buddha in a reclining posture is a magnificent sight
- Rajiv Gandhi Park: Created by the Vijayawada
Municipal Corporation with great care, this park welcomes tourists
at the entrance of the city with its impressive horticultural
network. A mini zoo and a musical water fountain are added
- Gandhi Hill: The first Gandhi Memorial with
seven stupas in the country was constructed on this hill at a
height of . The stupa was unveiled on 6 October 1968 by Dr. Zakir
Hussain, then President of India. Gandhi Memorial Library, a Sound
and Light Show on Mahatma Gandhi's life and a planetarium are the
other attractions. Gandhi Hill is open to the public every day
between 4pm and 8.30pm except on Tuesdays. The Planetarium show
runs everyday at 6.30pm except on Tuesdays. There is also a toy
train on top of the Gandhi Hill that goes around the hill and gives
a bird's eye view of the entire city.
- Victoria Museum: A place for archaeology
lovers, Victoria Museum has a carefully preserved collection of
ancient sculptures, paintings, idols, weapons, cutlery and
- Mogalarajapuram Caves: These caves are said to
have been excavated in the 5th century A.D. The caves are reputed
to be the first of their kind in South India. The idols of the
Hindu Gods Nataraja, Vinayaka and Arthanareeswara are carved here,
but none of the statues are available here.
- Bhavani Island: Perhaps one of the largest
islands on a river, Bhavani Island is located on the Krishna River
close to the city. AP Tourism is converting this 133 acre (54
hectare) island into an attractive tourist spot and a River Front
Resort. The island currently has some cottages to stay in and some
good adventure and fun sports. Journey to the island by boat is
- Kondapalli Fort:
Kondapalli village is situated from Vijayawada. A 7th century fort
on the hill with an impressive three storeyed rock tower was
witness to the glory of many dynasties. This fort was built by King
Krishna Deva Raya. It served as a business centre. Finally the fort
was used as a military training base by the British rulers. A good
picnic spot, the village is famous for toy making with light-weight
wood available on the hill forest. These toys are famous the
world-over as "Kondapalli toys".
- Haritha Berm Park: Haritha Berm Park which is
also known as the Punnami Beach Resort, is located quite close to
the Prakasm Barrage. The resort has both air-conditioned and non
air-conditioned boats and organizes a trip every evening across the
river and around the Bhavani island. The trip lasts around one hour
and is really enjoyable.
- Vijayawada cricket stadium
- The Hindu: Andhra Pradesh / Vijayawada News:
Keeping home turf in top shape