Daily Archives: December 30, 2010

Balangir at a glance

After the setup of Balangir town, the dowager Rani Amrut Kumari built the temple of Gopalji, the earliest temple of the town and caused to be excavated a large tank which was named Pratap Sagar after her husband Maharaja Surpratap Deo. During the rule of Maharaja Dalganjan Singh another defunct tank was re-excavated and was named as Rani Sagar bearing the memory of Rani Amrut Kumari.

Maharaja Ramachandra Deo III established the first English school in Balangir sometime between 1893 and 1895.Maharaja Dalganjan Singh built the two storyed court building and established the Dalganjan press. He made improvement of a big tank called Karanga Kata in the heart of the town and it was named after him as Dala sagar.

A contactor named Parbat Bira built by the time a beautiful temple of God Narasimha.Balangir grew in size and grandeur during the rule of Maharaja Prithiviraj Singh Deo who established the High English School, which was later known as Prithviraj High School (P R High School), a Sanskrit Tol, the George Literary Club and the fine temple of Samaleswari and Patneswari. The construction of the new palace building then known as Badal Mahal was undertaken by him about two miles to the south of the town by the side of the road leading to Titlagarh.It was later named as Sailashri Palace.Prior to this the royal palace was situated at the heart of the town and was known as Sheesh Mahal (currently known as Old Palace).

During the administration of Maharaja Rajendra Narayan Singh Deo the town was beautified by laying out Rajendra Park and by the Rajendra Experimental Farm and construction of several fine buildings.The X-ray ward, the maternity ward and the Dairy farm were started and a Museum for preservation of antiquities was also organised.The town had its first college, Rajendra College Balangir in 1944. In 1962 the Women’s College was started by member of parliament and Rajya Sabha member Sri Krushna Chandra Panda of Rugudi Para, who also established the Govt. Ayurvedic College, Town Boys High school and Town Girls high school amongst many other educational institute.

The town is situated on the right bank of the Lakshmi, a hill-stream which flows in her rocky bed in serpentine course. The stream has been bridged at five places as the town is expanding on the left bank.