Pithoragarh district is the easternmost Himalayan district in the state of Uttarakhand, India. It is naturally landscaped with high Himalayan mountains, snow-capped peaks, passes, valleys, alpine meadows, forests, waterfalls, perennial rivers, glaciers, and springs. The flora and fauna of the area have rich ecological diversity. Pithoragarh has many temples and ruined forts from the once flourishing reign of the warrior Chand Kingdom.
The geographical area of the district is 7,110 km2 (2,750 sq mi). At the 2011 census, the total population of the district was 485,993. The total literacy rate was 82.93 percent. Pithoragarh town, which is located in Saur Valley (Hindi: ???), is its headquarters. The district is within the Kumaon division (Hindi: ??????) of Uttarakhand state. The Tibet plateau is situated to the north and Nepal is to the east. The Kali River originates from Kalapaani and flows south, forming the eastern border with Nepal. The Hindu pilgrimage route for Mount Kailash-Lake Manasarovar passes through this district via Lipulekh Pass in the greater Himalayas. The district is administratively divided into five tehsils: Munsiyari; Dharchula; Didihat; Gangolihat; and Pithoragarh. Naini Saini Airport is the nearest civil airport, but it does not have regular scheduled commercial passenger service. The mineral deposits present in the district are magnesium ore, copper ore, limestone, and slate.
Some attribute the name to King Pithora Chand from the Chand Dynasty, while others cite Prithvi Raj Chauhan of the Chauhan Rajputs, who built a fort named Pithora Garh in the Saur Valley.
Pals (Katyuri kings)
After its conquest by Bhartpal, the Rajwar of Uku (now in Nepal), in the year 1364, Pithoragarh was ruled for the rest of the 14th century by three generations of Pals, and the kingdom extended from Pithoragarh to Askot.
According to a tamrapatra (inscribed copper or brass plaque) from 1420, the Pal dynasty, based out of Askot, was uprooted by Chand kings. Vijay Brahm (of the Brahm dynasty from Doti) took over the empire as King. Following the death of Gyan Chand, in a conflict with Kshetra Pal, the Pals were able to regain the throne.
It is believed that Bharti Chand, an ancestor of Gyan Chand, had replaced Bams, the ruler of Pithoragarh, after defeating them in 1445. In the 16th century, the Chand dynasty again took control over Pithoragarh town and, in 1790, built a new fort on the hill where the present Girls Inter College is situated. This fort was destroyed by the Indian government in 1962 after China attacked India.[why?]
The Chand rule, at its zenith, is seen as one of the most prominent empires in Kumaon. Their rule also coincides with a period of cultural resurgence. Archeological surveys point towards the development of culture and art forms in this period.
The King of Kumaon Chand of (Pithoragarh), has a Prince Deepak Chand last ruling from Dauli, Pithoragarh.
British rule began on 2 December 1815 when Nepal was forced to sign the Sugauli Treaty. Pithoragarh remained a tehsil under Almora district until 1960 when its status was elevated to that of a district. There was an army cantonment, a church, and a mission school, resulting in the spread of Christianity in the region.
In 1997, part of Pithoragarh district was separated to form the new Champawat district.
Kumaoni, with its numerous variations, is the most widely spoken language. The language is written in Devanagari script. The Bhotiya tribe speak a dialect called Beyansi (also known as Bhotia or Hunia), which is a language of the Tibeto-Burman family. The Van Rawat tribe speaks their own unique Kumaoni variant.
There are several Sino-Tibetan languages of the West Himalayish branch are spoken in Pithoragarh district. These include the Rawat language, Darmiya language, Chaudangsi language, and Byangsi language. The Rangas language was formerly spoken in Pithoragarh district and is now extinct.
Valleys of Pithoragarh
Waterfalls of Pithoragarh