Raipur - Encyclopedia

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RAIPUR, a town and district of British India, in the Chhattisgarh division of the Central Provinces. The town is 994 ft. above sea-level, 188 m. E. of Nagpur; and has a station on the Beng01-Nagpur railway. Pop. (1901) 32,114. There are ruins of an immense fort, with many tanks and old temples. It has a German mission and a government high school. The Rajkumar college, for the education of the sons of the chiefs of Chhattisgarh, was transferred here from Jubbulpore in 1894.

The District Of Raipur has an area of 9831 sq. M. It spreads over a vast plateau closed in by ranges of hills branching from the great Vindhyan chain. It is drained by the Seonath and the Mahanadi rivers. Geologically the country consists in the hilly tracts of gneiss and quartzite; the sandstone rocks in the west are intersected with trap dykes. Iron ore is abundant, and red ochre of high repute is found. In the interior the principal strata are a soft sandstone slate (covered generally by a layer of laterite gravel) and blue limestone, which crops out in numerous places on the surface and is invariably found in the beds of the rivers. Throughout the plains the soil is generally fertile. The climate is generally good; the mean temperature is 78° F., and the annual rainfall averages 55 in. The population on the present area in 1901 was 1,096,858, showing a decrease of 2.5% in the decade. The principal crop is rice. There are manufactures of cotton goods and brassware. The north-west corner of the district is crossed by the main line of the Bengal-Nagpur railway, and a narrow-gauge branch runs from Raipur town due south. The district suffered severely from famine in 1896-97, and again in 1899-1900.

Raipur was governed by a branch of the Haihaivansi dynasty of Ratanpur for many centuries until their deposition by the Mahrattas in 1750. The country was then already in a condition of decay, and soon afterwards it relapsed into absolute anarchy. In 1818 it was taken under British superintendence and made rapid progress. It fell with the rest of the Nagpur dominions to the British government in 1854. In 1906 its area was reduced by the formation of the new district of Drug.

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