Balangir district,Odisha

Balangir is a city and municipality in Balangir district in the state of Odisha, India. It is also the headquarters of Balangir district. Balangir has a rich cultural heritage. Population wise Balangir is the third largest city (Census 2011) in Western Odisha after Rourkela and Sambalpur. It is also known as the cultural hub of Western Odisha. Balangir city has many cultural groups who are trying hard to preserve the dying down Kosali folk arts & dance. Balangir municipality is divided into twenty one wards. Each ward consists of two three Units or sub-areas called “Pada” or “Para”. Balangir city has nearly forty “Pada’s”. Some of the largest “Padas” of Balangir city are Rugudi Pada, Behera Pali Pada, Sud Pada, Maal Pada, Tikra Pada, Radharani Pada, Sagar Pada, Pratapsagar pada, Talpali Pada, Jagannath Pada, Thikadar Pada, Palaceline, Gandhinagar Pada, Shanti Pada, Barpali Pada, Tulsinagar Pada, Kansari Pada, Teligoth Pada, Radharani para, Club para, Khadal para, Rameshwar nagar, Rajendra para, A.B.S.S. road etc. It is also home to the Ordnance Factory Balangir which is run by the Ordnance Factories Board Ministry of Defence, Government of India to manufacture various types of products[which?] for the Indian Armed Forces. It is spread over an area of 12,200 acres.

History of Balangir district,Odisha

Balangir’s name is said to have been derived from Balaram Garh, a fort, built here in the 16th Century by Balram Deo, the 19th Raja of Balangir (Ex-Patna State) and founder of Sambalpur kingdom.

Balangir was an obscure village till 1871 when the Court of Wards administration during the minority of the then ruler Ram Chandra Deo III shifted the capital from Patnagarh. Immediate steps were taken to build a planned township.

Patnagarh, which was the capital of the Kingdom of Patna for several centuries was considered unsuitable to be the state headquarters because of its unhealthy climate. The moats and the bamboo thickets which had long protected the place against enemies became breeding ground of mosquitoes causing widespread malaria. The place was also not on the direct road from Bhawanipatna to Sambalpur. So, Balangir was selected to be the headquarters not only because of its climate but also for its admirable location on the route connecting the headquarters of Sambalpur with that of Kalahandi.

Planning of Balangir Town

The Plan of Balangir Town was prepared by Pandit Chintamani Bidyabhusan as a square town with roads crossing one another at right angles was accepted and the new township was constructed to the south of the old village.

Sir Douglas, the then Deputy Commissioner of Sambalpur, got the sanction of the government and transferred the Headquarters from Patnagarh to the new town of Balangir in 1872. Old Balangir is now known as Junha Dihi meaning the old house site.

Early developments

Already in the 1871, the dispensary was built and some government offices moved to Balangir. The Court of Wards’ administration lasted for 22 years, from 1871 to 1893 and during that period the jail building, the palace for the Maharaja and many office buildings were constructed. During the Kondh Rebellion of Kalahandi in 1882, the importance of Balangir increased as it became the main seat of operation against the rebellious Kondhs.

Tourist Destinations of Balangir district,Odisha

It is about 70 km away from Balangir, Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva are being worshiped here. A yatra called Shiva Chaturdashi Mela is observed with hue which attracts visitors and devotees form across the country.

Rajendra Park

Built by last king of Patna (princely state) HH. Rajendra Narayan Singh Deo is a 100-year-old park. This park is situated in the heart of Balangir City. It is a lush green park with hundred varieties of Roses and other flowers. The park has three beautiful water fountains which light up at evenings. Rajendra Park also have children playing areas and various amusements. It has got a cafeteria also. Besides that the park is equipped with Dolby Digital Sound System which plays old Hindi songs throughout the evening. In the middle of the park there is a statue of its founder HH Rajendra Narayan Singhdeo. The timing of the park is from afternoon 4 PM to evening 10 PM. Entry fee for this park is Rs.2, which is used for the maintenance. Rajendra Park is situated in front of the Balangir Municipality Office.

Karanga Kata

One of the oldest lake of Western Odisha. Recently Balangir Municipality has renovated it and started Boating. Lush green garden has been built around the lake to make it beautiful. It is located behind the Durga Mandir.

Anand Niketan, Khujenpali

There is a beautiful Ashram organised by Viswatma Chetana Parishad on 40 Acres of land surrounded by School Viswatma Vidya Mandir, Yoga Centre, Puja Mandap, Sadhana Kehtra, Ashutosh Peeth, Green Forest, Garden, Prajna Kutir, Santha Nivas etc. Every year nearly thousands visitors coming from around the world to see this spiritual place on various occasion like Sivaratri, Navaratri, Guru Purnima and for many Yoga and spiritual practices. The asharm is established from 1985 by Paramahamsa Swami Sri Satyaprajna Nanda Saraswati.

Khujenpali Ashram

If you are in search of real spirituality then this is a must visit place. 5 km from Balangir Town.