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HISTORY


Bhadrak is an ancient land noted in legends dating from the age of the puranas, contributing to Odisha's maritime & agrarian prosperity, trade and commerce down the ages and recorded in History. Since the inception of Abul Fazal's Ain-e-Akabari. The ancientry of this land is eloquently testified by the gigantic tank of Asura, the Buddhist relics of the Seventh and Eight Centuries discovered in Khadipada and Solampur, the villages of Dhamnagar, the Budddist caves in Sarisua Hill near Kupari and the mysterious temple of Biranchi Narayan in the village Palia, a parallel to the Sun Temple at Konark.

The last battle to vindicate the freedom of Odisha was fought in a village called Gohiratikiri, on the bank of the river Genguti near Dhamnagar in 1568 in which the defeated king Mukunda Dev lost his life. In 1575 the Muslim population settled down in Bhadrak following the discomfiture of the Afgans under Usman at the hand of Raja Mansingh. In Mughal period Bhadrak remained a subah under the Nawabs of Bengal.

When the imperial powers of the Mughals waned, the zone consisted of some principalities like Kanika, Ampo and Agarapada with a few administrative sub-units called Chowparhies such as Kubera, Talapada, Nadigaon, Kasimpur, Kurigaon, Bindha etc., all ruled by Kshatriya Chiefs with patriotic temper.

After the British occupation of Odisha, Cuttack and Balasore constituted one of the two administrative divisions, in June 1804. In 1828 when Balasore was made a separate District, Bhadrak become one of its Sub-Division with an Assistant Magistrate cum Deputy Collector as the Sub-Divisional Head, while the Munsif Court remained in Jajpur until 1901.

In modern times, during the period of National struggle Bhadrak became the vanguard. In 1920 when the non-cooperation movement was launched in response to the clarion call of Gandhiji, the boycott of the law court practically resulted in closing down of the court of the 2nd Officer for a whole year. Gandhiji came down to Bhadrak in the last week of March 1921, being impressed with the nationalistic fervour and fighting spirit of the people. In 1922 started the historic mass rebellion of Kanika which for the time being was suppressed with the help of British troops stationed at Bhadrak but ultimately the popular upsurge, under the leadership of Chakradhar Behera, the doyen of Kanika tenants movement triumphed.

With the mass civil disobedience movement launched in 1930, Bhadrak once again became vibrant with patriotic zeal, hearts throbbed with the urge for freedom, salt law was defied, a shake up given to the Govt. and success achieved. Dr. Harekrushna Mahatab's role in steering this movement to a crowning success is so great and spectacular that it has become already a part of Bhadrak psyche and history of modern India. Mahatma Gandhi who visited Bhadrak again in 1934 stayed in Mahatab's residence at Nuabazar. Gandhiji addressed a meeting of the Harizan workers in Jibaraj Ashram (Garadpur). It was by this time that Banchhanidhi Mohanty of Eram was shaping, stimulating and sensitizing the national consciousness among the people by his patriotic songs.

In the historic Quit India Movement of 1942 Bhadrak played a leading role. It was under the leadership of Muralidhar Panda that on the 22nd Sept.1942 at Lunia, Katasahi the movement flared up to immortal flame with Nidhi Mohalik and eight others laying down their lives at the altar of freedom. Fittingly the place has been hallowed as Sahidnagar. At Eram on the 28th Sept. 1942 in an enclosed place like jalianawal Bagh nearly forty persons bared their chests to British Bullets for the cause of freedom. The congregated leadership, which guided the quit India Movement, constitutes many luminous figures including Dr.Harekrushna Mohatab, Md. Hanif, Muralidhar Jena, Gokulananda Mohanty, Nilamani Routray and others.

Since independence, the history of Bhadrak has been the history of multifarious progress in Education, Industry, Agriculture, Trade and commerce and with the birth of a new star it is leaping towards the twenty first century with hope and promise.