Several commercial and government establishments were made around Sambalpur after the Indian independence in order to make it as one of the hub for communication and administration in the western part of Odisha. The city of Sambalpur has one of the prime railway junctions of Odisha that connects the state with western and northern parts of the country.
Sambalpur district is known for several historic events including the freedom movement of India in which the district took active participation. The city of Sambalpur is also being mentioned in the book of Ptolemy as Sambalaka situated on the bank of river Mahanadi. Sambalpur is also the headquarters of a subsidiary of Coal India Limited, named as Mahanadi Coalfields Limited which was established in 1992.
Sambalpur is also known for the world famous Hirakud Dam, Sambalpuri Saris, Sambalpuri Dance, Sambalpuri songs, Gandhi temple, Sitalsasthi Carnival and many more such attractions. The government of Odisha has taken several steps in the development of the Sambalpur district which has its unique culture, and is known for things that belong to Sambalpur like, the Sambalpuri dresses, Sambalpuri Dance, Sambalpuri language, Sambalpuri handlooms, Sambalpuri songs and many more.
Sambalpur MunicipalitySambalpur Municipality was incorporated in the year 1883 as per Govt. of Central Provinces of that time. Later on the Central Provinces Municipal Act, 1886, 1903 and Bihar Odisha Municipal Act,1922 became operative from time to time. But finally the Odisha Municipal Act, 1950 became operative and the regulations were being implied as per that Act and the Sambalpur Municipality was then declared as ‘A’ Grade Municipality. The Sambalpur Municipality operates from the district headquarters, Sambalpur. The Sambalpur Municipality looks after the Construction & Maintenance of Civic Infrastructure and Poverty Alleviation. Issue of Birth Certificate, Death Certificate and Marriage Certificate is also under the Sambalpur Municipality.
History of SambalpurSambalpur is believed to be one of the ancient cities of the country and has its roots in deep past from the prehistoric age of around 5th century BC. Many historians speak about the history of Sambalpur to be full of events that has contributed in several revolutions, among all the freedom movement is one of the prominent. As per the historical evidences it is believed that Samudragupta defeated King Mahendra of Koshala, the kingdom that included Sambalpur in 4th century and during the 5th and 6th centuries Sambalpur came under the rule of Sarbhapuriyas. During the 7th century Sambalpur passed on to the hands of the Pandu Vansa king Trivaradeva which then shifted under the rulings of king Janmajaya I Mahabhavaguptain close of 9th century who extended his empire which comprised the modern districts of Sambalpur and Bolangir.
Later on the dynasty came to be known as the Samavansi dynasty. During the last part of the Samavansi rule, Sambalpur was occupied by the Kalachuris of Ratnapua. The 13th century witnessed a bitter fight between the Kalachuris and the Gandas. Later on, the Gandas occupied Sambalpur. In the 14th century Ramai Dev laid the foundation of the Chauhan rule in Western Odisha. However, the Chowhan rule came to an end in the mid of 18th Century, and Sambalpur was occupied by the Marathas.
The bitterness between the British and Marathas grew to a peak level and the Britishers obliterated the Marathas through the route crossing the district of Sambalpur and finally the Sambalpur came under the rulings of British Kindgom on 1804, January 2nd. The subsequent years witnessed the movements of the Kandhas and Binjhal Zamidars against the British and their poppet ruler in Sambalpur was then, Rani Mohan Kumari. Although the modern concept of nationalism was not activating force, one could see the spirit of freedom and hatred of foreign rule reflected in the struggle. The period recorded the heroic sage of Vir Surendra Sai (the most renowned freedom fighter from Western Odisha).
The name of Sambalpur district is believed to be on the from the presiding goddess Samalai, whose stone image was discovered by Balaram Dev, the first Chowhan king of Sambalpur. Later on the District was divided into four districts namely Sambalpur, Bargarh,Jharsuguda and Deogarh.
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Sambalpur - Developments in Recent YearsThe city of Sambalpur has a population of more than 5,00,000 and is growing more day by day, also people migrating to the city has resulted in increase of the city’s population. Some of the prestigious institutions like Sainik School, Police Training School, etc. are being planned to be developed in near future. State Government has also crafted plans for ‘Super Speciality’ hospital with accommodation strength up to seven hundred beds. Sambalpur has become a hub for the employment opportunities as well as several business opportunities due to the population growth. As per the Government of Odisha, in the near future chances of Sambalpur (including Hirakud and Burla) being developed into a municipal corporation are very high.
Geography of SambalpurThe district of Sambalpur lies between 20° 40’ N and 22° 11’ N latitude, 82° 39’ E and 85° 15’ E longitude and is spread on the area of over 6,702 Sq. Km. The district of Sambalpur is surrounded by Bargarh and Jharsuguda Districts in the Western side, Deogarh District in the Eastern side, Sonepur and Angul Districts in the Southern side and Sundargarh District in the Northern side. The district has three distinctive physiographic units such as, Hilly Terrain of Bamra and Kuchinda in the north, plateau and ridges of Rairakhol in the south-east and valley and plains of Sambalpur Sub-division in the south east. Sambalpur district experiences extreme type of climate with 66 rainy days and 153 centimeters rainfall on an average per annum.
Most of the rainfall is confined to the months from June to October visited by south west monsoon. The temperature rises up to 47° Celsius during May with intolerable heat wave. The temperature falls as low as 11° Celsius during winter months this lasts between Octobers to February. The rainfall is highly uneven and irregular. Heaviest ever recorded rainfall is 581.9 mm in Sambalpur in 1982 which was the highest ever in Odisha till September 2010. The relative humidity is high during rainy season being generally over 75%. After rainy season the humidity gradually decreases and the weather becomes dry towards the winter. The areas of the Sambalpur town on Mahanadi river side also known as the low-lying areas are said to be flood prone.
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Economy of SambalpurEntire Sambalpur district’s economy is based on agriculture and forests. The forests of nearby places of Sambalpur contribute to a great extent in the growth and development of Sambalpur’s economy. In the past Sambalpur has been a great centre of diamond trade. Odisha is one of the major producers of Kendu Leaves, of which maximum portions comes from the district of Sambalpur. The Tendu leaves also known as green gold of Odisha is also one of the major forest products of Sambalpur contributing vitally in its economy.
The industrialization process that has commenced in the district of Sambalpur with prime industries like that of the power, alumina and steel have been established in the near past which also has a big role in contributing towards the district’s economy. The world famous handloom of Sambalpur has got the district a distinctive presence on the map of India. The S textiles are also one of the very famous across the state. The tribal heritages of Sambalpur and the amazing forest land has always been a part of development of the economy of Sambalpur.
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Culture and Language of SambalpurSambalpur is one of the most important cities of Western Odisha, known for its high profile and rich culture. The culture and art of the Sambalpur district is an unique proposition of dance, music, handicraft, believes, social values, traditional practices and many more. The principal language of Sambalpur is Odiya but the twist in the words and the style of speaking makes it completely different from that of other cities and districts of the state. The Sambalpuri language has its own importance and can be identified easily. There are also several other tribal languages like Kisan, Kui, Oraon, Kharia and many more such languages that are also popularly spoken by the tribal people of the Sambalpur District. For more information in culture of Sambalpur, click here
Festivals Celebrated in SambalpurDue to the presence of the tribal culture in most of the parts of the Sambalpur there are several festivals which are celebrated here which are very much different from that of the other parts of the state. The festivals which are mostly celebrated here are Sital Sasthi, Nuakhai, Bhaijiuntia, Puajiuntia and many more.
Tourist Attractions of SambalpurSambalpur located at the heart of the forests area of Odisha has lots of tourist attractions. From the magnificent structure of Hirakud Dam to the deep tribal areas of rich forests of the district Sambalpur has several tourist attractions. Some of the most famous tourist spots of Sambalpur are the Gudguda waterfall, Chiplima, Maa Ghanteswari Temple, Huma, the leaning temple of lord Shiva, the temples of Liakhai, Madanmohan, Satyabadi, Bariha, Brahampura, Dadhibamana, Timini and Gopalji, the word famous temple of Goddess Samaleswari and many such attractive tourist spots are located in Sambalpur. For more information on tourist attraction in Sambalpur, click here
Food in SambalpurSambalpur being a historical place witness most of the traditional food items that are loved by the residents of the district. Pakhal Bhat, Basi bhat, Alu Baingana Jhol, Peda, Panasa Tarkari, Gulgula, Mansa Kasa and Palau are some of the most famous cuisines of Sambalpur.
How to Reach SambalpurThe district much close to nature is well connected to the rest of the country by the means of road and railway transport. Although the Air transport medium is not much convenient although there are several mediums to connect to the City of Sambalpur.
By Road: Sambalpur is well connected to the major cities of the state with excellent network of transport facility for commercial and public transportation. Busses from the Bus terminal can be taken, that departs in every ten minutes to Bargarh and Jharsugra. The Sambalpur Bus terminus is located at the Ainthapali. The Rourkela-Sambalpur State Highway-10 is presently being upgraded from a two lane highway to four lane and even six lanes where it is necessary. Huge amount is being spent by the Highway authority and the state government on the development of the modes of transportation to connect Sambalpur with rest part of the state. The Western Odisha Urban Transport Service Limited has recently launched special bus services that serve the transport in the city of Sambalpur. These buses also ply between the city to the outskirts i.e., Burla, Rengali and Maneswar.
By Rail: Sambalpur city has four railway stations, namely Sambalpur (Khetrajpur), Sambalpur Road (Fatak), Hirakud and Sambalpur City. Sambalpur City station is located on the Bhubaneswar-Jharsuguda rail line, while rest three stations are located on the Jharsuguda-Bargarh rail line. There are several trains that connect Sambalpur to the major cities and metros of the state.
By Air: The Swami Vivekananda Airport located at Raipur, the state capital of Chhattisgarh is one of the nearest Airports from Sambalpur which is located at a distance of 264 km. The Biju Patnaik International Airport at Bhubaneswar, the state capital of Odisha is also the nearest Airports from Sambalpur which is located at a distance of 295 km. As per the plans of the state government a new airport is being constructed at Jharsuguda which is just 50 km form Sambalpur.
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Quick Facts about SambalpurArea: 6,657 sq km
Elevation: 135 m (443 ft)
Founded by: Raja Balram Deva
Government Type: Democarcy
Population: 5, 41, 874
Telephone code: 0663
Vehicle registration: OD 15
Spoken Languages: Sambalpuri, Oriya, English, Hindi