Saturday, June 18, 2011

Bharuch - Bharigutirth

Bharuch - Bharigutirth



Way :
Ahmedabad - 195 KM
Bharuch - Bharigutirth Bharuch - Bharigutirth
Bharuch - Bharigutirth Bharuch - Bharigutirth
Photo Gallery

Bharuch or Bhrigutirth or Bhrigukachchha is the largest city on the banks of Nannada. It is so ancient that it is believed to have existed even before the time of Mahabharata. K.M. Munshi thinks it is the old city called 'Mahishmati'. Historians have different opinions for its name, though it has many names by now .. It was called Bhrigupur, Bhrigukachchha, Bharuch, in Marathi it is called Bhadoch and the English called Broach even! It seems that Bhrigu Rishi had his Ashram here and his descendents were called Bhargavas. Kanaiyalal Munshi has chronicled the glorious stories of the Bhrigus. This ancient city also had its importance during the Solanki rule. Unfortunately we do not find many historical remains here.

We often hear of cities being buried all at once. Such events have been occurring since pre-historic times till present ones, it is true, and we get their witnesses as well. But, like the powerful flow of Nannada, the strong flow of time also contributes in the erosion of places. This originally rich and vibrant port is no longer useful due to the constant flow of the river deposits. Even the 'Nav Choki na Ovara', the seats around it and the steps leading down, are all buried in the nearly 10 m high river deposits only within the last generation or so. This author is himself an eye-witness to this fact.

The vast fort at Bharuch, built by Kumarpal on the bank of the river however still declares its past glory. Nearly parallel to the bank, this fort is nearly 2 km long. Parallel to it is the main city

This arrangement makes Bharuch a city with length rather than width, what the Gujarati people call 'paghdi pana' style. Nearby is the 'Golden Bridge' built over Narmada to cross its flow. It was built by the British in 1881 and because of the deep basin its expenditure became so much that it was named Golden Blidge. As this bridge became too old, a new bridge next to it was built for the Railway and the increase in traffic during the last decade made it necessary that yet another bridge be built at Zadeshvar, a little away on National Highway No. 8. One bridge a little ahead is built to join Garudeshvar and Rajpipla

Bharuch has good educational facilities. Shri Sadvidya Mandal runs an engineering college here. It teaches different branches of engineering such as chemical, electrical, mechanical, computer, information technology etc. Pandit Omkarnath Thakur Kala Sangeet Mandal is very active in organizing classical music concerts here every 2 or 3 months. Much awareness is seen in the cultural and literary fields in this city. Since last more than 6 years Book Lovers' Meet takes place regularly in the corporate building of GNFC.

The decaline of commercial activity of the city was followed by new development of industry here. A vast complex of Narmada Valley Fertilizers is vibrating with activity. It is one of the biggest fertilizer complexes of Gujarat. This Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilizer has transformed the entire surrounding area. To the south is Ankleshwar known for its mineral oil wealth. It provides the biggest amount and has the best quality of mineral oil in India. As this region yields this oil, its significance is growing every day. The oil from Ankleshwar is refined at the Koylee Refineries near Vadodara.

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