Friday, 9 December 2011

Purulia, West Bengal

Located in the eastern side of India, Purulia is one of the nineteen districts of West Bengal. It holds an important place in the map of India, thanks to its strategic location. Purulia is located at a promising spot, serving as a gateway, connecting the developed industrial belts of West Bengal with the hinterlands in Orissa, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. The district has a town with the same name, which acts as its headquarters. Purulia is funnel-shaped and its functions are also similar to that of a funnel - moving the tropical monsoon current from the Bay of Bengal to the subtropical parts of north-west India.

Talking about the history of Purulia district, not much is known before the acquisition of the territory by the British East India Company. According to Jaina Bhagavati Sutra, it is believed that Purulia district was a part of Banga, one of the 16 Mahajanapadas. Some also believe it to be also a part of the country known as Vajra-bhumi in the ancient era. With the grant of Diwani of the subahs of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa in 1765, the territory came under the rule of the British. In the beginning of 19th century, Purulia became a part of the Jungle Mahals district, which was composed of 23 parganas and mahals, with Manbhum as the headquarters. It was in 1956 that Manbhum district was partitioned and Purulia district was born, under States Reorganization Act & Transfer of Territories Act.

The district of Purulia is believed to be the oldest one in the West Bengal, existing even in the 5th century. It offers tourists a mixture of rich tradition and heritage, coupled with exotic locations of spellbinding beauty. Cheliama, in Purulia, extends tourists opportunity to dwell in the contemporary civilization of the 17th century, what with the terracotta figurines and exclusive carvings around the temples region. For people with a religious and spiritual bend of mind, Deulghat is nothing less than a paradise. The land of temples, as it is fondly called; it is the perfect place to connect spiritually. The other attractions of the place include Saheb Bandh, Ayodhya Hill and Para. Purulia is also famous for the prestigious institution named Ramakrishna Mission Vidyapith.

Places To See:


One of the famous tourist spots in Purulia, Cheliama is a paradise for historians and archeologists, thanks to its rich history. The village has remnants of the contemporary civilization of the 17th century. The terracotta figurines and exclusive carvings around the temples of the region vouch for the fact that the village had been an important landmark during the yesteryears. Apart from this, the well-known Radha-Govinda Temple in Cheliama attracts mass of tourists and is a focal place, depicting the Bengali culture prevalent in the contemporary era


Deulghat, keeping up to its name, is the land of temples. The place is home to about 15 temples near the Kansai River. The awe-striking architecture of the temple, coupled with graceful carvings, is one of the prime reasons why Deulghat is one of the favorite spots to visit in Purulia. The temple reflects the traditional culture of the contemporary people. Though there is nothing but ruins left in the temple, Deulghat still continues to be an important tourist center.

Saheb Bandh

A 50-acre lake, Saheb Bandh poses as one of the enigmatic locations in Purulia. Talking about the history of the place, it is believed to have been built during the mid-19th century. It is believed that convicts, at the instigation of Colonel Tikley, dug this water body. They started the process in the year 1843. It took five years for the water body to be constructed. Today a beautiful and mesmeric location, Saheb Bandh also acts as a temporary home for migratory birds. During the migratory season, birds fly from Baluchistan, Siberia and various places in Europe, to the place. So, for birdwatchers, Saheb Bandh is an ideal retreat. 

Ayodhya Hill

Purulia offers tourists not just places of religious and cultural interest, but also sites wherein one can have fun and frolic. To cater to the needs of explorers and adventure lovers, the place extends tourist a perfect destination to practice mountaineering and rock climbing - Ayodhya Hill. Around 700 m high, the hill is a perfect blend of pristine nature and rich mythological interests. The place is also famous for its fresh water springs and stream. 


Para is an excellent tourist spot and also a village that reminds you of the advent of Muslims to the east. The region houses two pre-Muslim deuls - while one is in sync with the temple in Deulghat, the other belongs to a later period. Both of them prove to be an excellent example of the grand architecture and fine cravings employed in the yesteryears. Though almost a century old now, these relics have a beauty of their own. The heritage buildings would surely take tourist to the former era, even in the present times.


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