|Elevation||207 m (679 ft)|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Vehicle registration||OR, OD 18 A, B, C|
Rayagada is a district of meadows, forests, water falls and terraced valleys, peopled by many primitive tribal groups. The scenic beauty and heritage on the land is an unexplored paradise.
The pattern of people living in the district show unity in diversity of races, languages, and culture. The Scheduled Tribes living in the district possess dissimilar economics ranging from food gathering to settled cultivation. Their languages/dialects, societies and culture show inter-societal and -cultural variations because of the ethnic mosaic.
Rayagada is nearly 390 km from Bhubaneswar by road. It is connected by rail with important cities like: Bhubaneswar, Raipur, Visakhapatanam, Koraput, Kolkata, Chennai, Delhi, Bangalore, Mumbai and Hyderabad.
As of 2001[update] India census, Rayagada had a population of 57,732. Males constitute 51% of the population and females 49%. Rayagada has an average literacy rate of 64%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 72%, and female literacy is 56%. In Rayagada, 12% of the population is under 6 years of age.
There are various communities living in Rayagada. This is a tribal inhabited district of Odisha. Due to better communication with neighbour state Andhra Pradesh, the Telugu population is significant. Sindhis, Gujaratis and Marwaris who settled there a long time ago have become a distinct identity of the place. Tribals too comprise a significant population of the place. All the festivals relating to these communities are celebrated with pomp and fervour.
In the third century B.C, during the reign of Ashoka the Great, it was under Kalinga empire (ancient Odisha). The hilly track between Bansadhara and Nagabali was famous for spices. The Rastriks were defeated by Kharvela, the only Aryan Emperor of Kalinga (ancient Odisha), during the Chawpagada battle.
During the rule of Gangavansi and Suryavanshi Kings in Odisha, it was under feudatory chief of Kalinga-Utkala empire Dadarnab Dev of Gudari Kataka This region went to the Bahamanis when the last Hindu Gajapati emperor of Odisha, Mukund Dev was defeated at Gohera Tikiri in 1519. It came under the Nandapur Kingdom for 47 years. Biswambar Dev was defeated and killed by Hasin Khan of Mughal Chicacole Sarkar rulers of Odisha, was perhaps the third king installed at Rayagada.
The Sati Kunda Goddess Majhi Ghairani and the mudfort around it speaks much about its evidence. In subsequent years it was under Bobbili Tahasil of Vijayanagaram. During the English regime, Rayagada came under Jeypore administration and later was part of Koraput District. As part of the extension plan of districts in the Odisha state, On 2 October 1992 Rayagda District was carved out of the erstwhile Koraput district.
The tribals of Rayagada
The district has a predominant tribal population of 57.52%. All the 11 blocks of the district have been covered under tribal sub-plan with three micro projects in operation for the pre-literate indigenous tribal communities.
The topography of Rayagada gives a prefect platform for the tribals in sustaining their ethno-cultural identity in the district. Forest area covers an extent of 4785.36 km2 out of which 777.27 km² is Reserved forest.
The district has been the homeland of various tribal communities with their sub-tribes, who are found in different levels of development depending upon their assimilation with the mainstream or modern communities. In the ethno-cultural map of Odisha, two tribes stand out quite prominently for their education backwardness and continuing ethnic and cultural identity, the Kandhas and the Souras.
For the past six decades, Rayagada has seen institutions like IMFA, JKPAPER mills enriching the economy.
Rayagada has a great mineral source, with full of bauxite, silicon. According to a survey India has 56% of total bauxite storage of the world out of which Odisha has 62%. Out of that Rayagada has an 84% share. Depending on this, other industries like Birla, L&T, Sterlite showed an interest in Rayagada.
Rayagada is a destination for hotel industry: Hotels like Sai International, Jyotimahal, Vamsikrishna, Tejaswini, Kapilas, Raj Bhawan are a step ahead in this.
Besides these, small- and mid-scale industries enrich economy of Rayagada. Notable among them are Konark Alum Industries, Satyam Packers and Processors Pvt. Ltd., etc.
Other industries like Jeypore Sugars Ltd., ferro manganese were supplementing economy of Rayagada, but due to shortage in supply these were closed. The jeypore sugars was established by the British which attracted loads of people from nearby states to Rayagada. The industrial atmosphere, great location and availability of resources around made Rayagada a prominent town in Odisha.
Rayagada railway station is an important station from where direct trains to Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bhubaneswar, Raipur, New Delhi, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Puri, Visakhapatnam and other cities can be boarded.
|#No||Train Number||Train Name|
|1||18302||Rayagada - Sambalpur Express|
|2||12844||Ahmedabad - Puri Express|
|3||12843||Puri - Ahmedabad Express|
|4||17481||Bilaspur - Tirupati Express|
|5||13352||Alleppey - Dhanbad Express|
|6||13351||Dhanbad - Alappuzha Express|
|7||18448||Jagdalpur - Bhubaneswar Hirakhand Express|
|8||18447||Bhubaneswar - Jagdalpur Hirakhand Express|
|9||12835||Hatia - Yesvantpur Express|
|10||18005||Howrah Jn - Jagdalpur Express|
|11||18006||Jagdalpur - Howrah Jn Express|
|12||18517||Korba - Visakhapatnam Express|
|13||18310||Nanded - Sambalpur Nagawali Express|
|14||12807||Visakhapatnam - H Nizamuddin Samta Express|
|15||12808||H Nizamuddin - Visakhapatnam Samta Express|
|16||12836||Yesvantpur - Hatia Express|
|17||12889||Tatanagar - Yesvantpur Express|
|18||12890||Yesvantpur - Tatanagar Express|
|19||17482||Tirupati - Bilaspur Express|
|20||18107||Rourkela - Koraput Express|
|21||18108||Koraput - Rourkela Express|
|22||18189||Tatanagar - Alappuzha Express|
|23||18309||Sambalpur - Nanded Express|
|24||18518||Visakhapatnam - Korba Express|
|25||12375||Chennai - Asansol Express|
|26||12376||Asansol - Chennai Express|
|27||18211||Durg - Jagdalpur Express|
|28||18212||Jagdalpur - Durg Express|
|29||18437||Bhubaneshwar - Bhawanipatna Link Express|
|30||18438||Bhawanipatna - Bhubaneshwar Link Express|
|31||22847||Visakhapatnam - Lokmanya Tilak Super Fast Express|
|32||22848||Lokmanya Tilak - Visakhapatnam Super Fast Express|
|33||18301||Sambalpur - Rayagada Express|
|34||18452||Puri - Hatia Tapaswini Express|
|35||57271||Vijayawada Jn - Rayagada Passenger|
|36||57272||Rayagada - Vijayawada Jn Passenger|
Rayagada, the district of many charms, is a thrill to the searching eyes. It has the facilities to serve as a base for visiting the nearby place of interest.
- Maa Majhighariani Temple is famous in Southern Division of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh. Most of the devotees come from Madhyapradesh Chhatishgarh, Andhrapradesh including undivided Koraput District. Only the face of the Maa MajhiGhariani is worshiped. During Sunday, Wednesday and Friday a large number of devotees come to worship the Goddess. The temple is famous for Chaitra-Parba, i.e., March–April of every year.
- Maa Mangla Maa Temple lies in the Raniguda area of Rayagada.it is near the hathipathar
- Hatipathar is only 3 km from the district headquarters. It is a place of great scenic beauty with two waterfalls on the course of river Nagavali. The scenic beauty is impressive and the boulders here appear like huge elephants. Visitor are not welcome after heavy rains in 2006 changed the course of the Nagabali.
- Gayatri Temple at MITS College: A beautiful temple with Goddess Maa Gayatri, Saraswati and Maa Majhighariani. Engineering students do meditation and pooja after their studies in the temple. Lot of devotees come to the temple regularly. A Spiritual Library is present under the temple ground floor. Lot of books on Indian culture are there.
- Laxminarayan temple is at IMFA Factory, Therubali. The deities Laxminarayan, Hanuman, Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra and Lord Siva are worshiped by thousands devotees.
- Paikapada is famous for so many Siva Lingams. The deities like Lord Jagannath, Maa Dhakineswar Kalika, Samudra, etc. are worshiped here. The car festival of Lord Jagannath is also celebrated. During Sivaratri a large number of pilgrims come to observe the function. The place is near Theruballi. It is believed that there are 99,99,999 shivlingams (only one less than 1 crore) in and around Paikapada shrine.
- Chatikona is located about 48 km from Rayagada surrounded by a series of valleys and wooded hills of varying colours and the place is a center of pilgrimage for the temple of Mahadev. It offers picnickers gorgeous view of the waterfall. The Siva temple is the focus of hectic activities on Siva Ratri. The Dongaria Kondha of Chatikona represent the primitive section of the tribe.
- Minajhola is only 134 km from Rayagada. It is a beauty spot of nature, has a siva temple at the confluence of three rivers. It is situated in the heart of dense forest, rich in wildlife. Sivaratri is a popular festival of this place. Though there is no good all-weather road yet, the place is worth visiting. Regular bus service is available from Rayagada and Gunupur up to Gudari. The rest 25 km road is Jeepable.
- The Devagiri hill rises to a height of 120.2 meters. Unlike other hills it is not narrower upwards. The top of the hill is a flat platform of rectangular plain, which can be approached only from the northern side. There are 476 steps which are the unique feature of the Devagiri. At the top of the hill, there are perennial poles of water called the Ganges, Yamuna, Saraswati, Bhargavi and Indradyumna. There is a cave looking like two jaws. The Siva Lingam is enshrined at the meeting point of the jaws. Sivaratri is its biggest festival, which draws a large crowd every year. It is 50 km from Rayagada. Regular bus services are available from Rayagada to Kalyansingpur and the sacred hill is close to Kalyansingpur.
- Padampur houses the shrine of Manikeswari Siva. It is identified to be the seat of Dharmakirti, the Budhist-Logician-philosopher. It is a 7th-century temple. It is 90 km from Rayagada.
- Gayatri Temple at Padampur is a beautiful temple with Goddess Maa PanchMukhi-Gayatri, Maa durga and Maa Mahalakshmi. The temple is famous for Saraswati Puja Sri panchami in January–February. It is 90 km from Rayagada.
- Maa Markama Temple is located at Bissam Cuttack, 40 km from Rayagada. The temple got a new look and surrounded by lush green forest. Many people visit from near and far especially on Tuesdays. The town college has also been named after Goddess Markama.
- GUMA GHATI: it is about 20 km from rayagada it is souranding by dence forest n very good place to see. many citizen come here for picnik. a small water fall also here
- RAYGADA KORAPUT RAILWAY LINE: the distance form rayagada to koraput is about 176 km this route is full of adventure since there 36 turnels and about 250 bridges fall in this route. this route is like konkan railway route and one can see animals while this journey. the koraput distinct is situated at the height of 870 meter from the sea level.
- The latest attraction of Rayagada is the Hanging Bridge File:HatiJhola.jpgthat connects the two sides of river Nagavali, which created a deep trench when it changed its flow path in 2006. The bridge resembles the Laxman Jhola of Rishikesh and is a popular tourist attraction.
According to Linga Puran, Bhimasankar temple in Bhimpur is around 100 km from Rayagada and around 30 km from Gunupur is one of the Jyotirling, situated at the western part of the holy Mahendragiri mountains and at the river bank of Mahendratanaya (which is also believed as the Daakini area by many historian), was excavated in 1974, having quadrangular Shakti around the Linga and decorated by a Upavita as per the puran.
Fairs and festivals
- Chaitra Parba of Maa Maji Ghariani Goddess (mainly at housing board colony attracts all)
- Chaiti Festival at GCD Grounds, Rayagada
- Rath Yatra at Rayagada in July
- Ganesh Puja at Telephone Bhavan Lane
- Kali Puja at Block Colony, Rayagada in November
- Gaja Laxmi Puja at New Colony, Rayagada during kumarpurnima
- Dusshera at J.K. Pur & Brahmin street, Rayagada in October.
- Annual celebration of Gram Devata during March–April (9 days) at Rayagada
- A Ganesh puja at the Kasturi Nagar & Near Rayagada College area
- Christmas in JEL Church.
- subha udbodhan mahostav of Sri Sri Thakur Anukul Chandra at Serikona, Rayagada, in January
- sree mahakala temple also situated at nanda pahad near gayatri temple gayatri nagar
- ganesh puja at new colony, near swaghat hotel
- Gaja Laxmi Puja in Bissam Cuttack at Dalamandap, Bissam Cuttack Popular in Rayagada Dist...
- Eid celebration at Rayagada and J.K.Pur is very famous across District.
Though a tribal dominated area, the focus on education has been there since long. G.C.D High School holds a prominent place being the oldest in the region. Gopabandhu Municipal High School another educational institution has been critical in educating children of this town. The other schools in the region are Sacred Heart School, which stood as the best school in entire district for excellence for studies, sports and discipline etc., St. Xavier's High School, L.P.S. Public School and L.P.S School (JAYKAYPUR). They are English medium school and affiliated to CBSE and ICSE Delhi. There is another school in Therubali - Chinmaya Vidyalaya affiliated to CBSE for studies up to 10 + 2. The Tribal Welfare Deptt. of Govt. of India under the management of ST & SC Development, Odisha has established Ekalavya Model Residential School at Siriguda, 5 km from the Dist. Headquarters. The CBSE pattern institution provides quality education especially to tribal students from std VI to +2 Science with well equipped lab. facility.
Rayagada college imparts education at +2 and +3 levels for Science, Arts and Commerce stream. Women's college imparts education in +2 Science/Arts and Commerce. But at +3 level it imparts education for Arts stream only. State governments' diploma engineering college known as UTKAL GOURAB MADHUSUDAN INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY (UGMIT) is present nearby river Nagabali and imparts diploma courses in several branches of engineering.
Also the area has seen a rise in engineering colleges which apart from B.Tech in Engineering also have facilities for MCA, MBA and Bio-Technology courses.
MITS : Majhigharaini Institute of Technology and Sciences.
GIACR : Gandhi Institute of advanced computer and research.
GIST : A sister organisation of well known "Gandhi group" has successfully completed its one year in the field of engineering teaching. It is also another step taken by the "Gandhi group" for improving the education in Rayagada.
RC : Raghavendra College, New Colony, imparts distance education through recognised boards and universities.
RITAM : Rayagada Institute of Technology and Management.
Rayagada is well known for its contribution to Oriya literature. There are number of cultural magazines continuously published from Ryagada. Prominent writers of this district are sarbo sri Damborudhar Patnaik, Sannyasi Sri Atmananda, Dr Kumudo ch. Mishra, Sibo Prasad Gantayat, Ranjan choudhury, Satyanarayan Gantayat, Basudev patro, Susant Nayak, Dwitichandra Sahu, Ram Krushna Pattnik, Kishor Mohapatro, Golok Dolai, Pratibha Dash, Prakesh Mohapatro, Parth Sarathi Barik, etc.
The Oriya magazine The Jyotshna is known as the cultural mouthpiece of Rayagada. The magazine has been published since 1972. At first Jyotshna was published from Sunabeda of undivided Koraput district. Its founder is shri Basudev Patro and editor is smt Santilata Patro. Patro has written a number of short stories, poems, novels, sonnets, which brought critic's attention. His poem collection Konark has received a great deal of accolade from the Oriya readers. Now Konark is going to be published in English.
There are magazines like Panchaboti, Rayagada Samachar, AKASH, Green Room, etc. which enriched the cultural aspect of Rayagada. One of the editor of the Oriya magazine the SARVADOYO published from Cuttack's Bakhorabad Sri BHAGBAT PRASAD RATH hails from Rayagada Town. Sri B.P.Rath has written a number of novels in Oriya, like LUHORO MOSAL KEBE LIVENA, MONISO TOLE KANONO GOLE and in each and every novel he has emphasized on removal of social disparity. Sri B.P.Rath is facilitated by a number of organizations of India. In 1980s the magazines published by sri B.P. Rath, like Green Room has revousationalised the literary environment. Other notable names in the literary circles is Bh. Nageswara Rao. The Veda Sourabha, A Vedic Oriya quarterly magazine has been published from Hatamuniguda. Sannyasi Sri Atmananda, the founder of Vishwa Vaidik Parivaar is the founder of the magazine. Sri Pranab Kishore Pattnaik edits the magazine. Of late Bidulata Huika, state convenor of Odisha Adibasi manch, a state level tribal outfit has compiled articles published in several Oriya news papers to a book called "Sampratika Paristitire Adibasi"-Tribals in the present context. She has also brought out two other books called "Maa Gadhiba Gaan-Mother will build the village" and "Jangala Adhikar Adhiniyama-Forest Rights Act". There are two Saraswati shishu vidya mandirs located at Rayagada. One is situated at Gayatri Nagar and another is at Ramakrishna Nagar. They play major role in the field of educating oriya medium students of Rayagada. There are a lot of tutorials in Rayagada town which imparts qualitative education to the students of college as well as school students. PADMINI TUTORIAL is one among them. It is exclusively for class IX and X students. In this tutorial teaching is followed by different audio visual media like video tutorials and other computer generated presentations.
Current MLA from Rayagada (ST) Assembly Constituency is Shri Lal Bihari Himrika of Biju Janta Dal, who won the seat in State elections in 2009 Lalbihari Himirika of BJD had won this seat in 2000. After serving as deputy speaker of Odisha assembly, now he is serving as a cabinet minister for Sc and ST development minister.
Rayagada is part of Koraput (Lok Sabha constituency). Shri Jayram Pangi (Biju Janta Dal) won the general election 2009 defeating Dr. Giridhar Gomango (INC) who represented this constituency 9 times.
- Good scenic beauty with rich greenery around, Rayagada becomes a must visit tourist destination of South Odisha.
- A bunch of good PSU and private banks like Utkal Gramiya Bank, Andhra Bank, Allahabad Bank, HDFC Bank, Bank of India, Indian Oversease Bank, Punjab National Bank, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, Union Bank of India, IDBI Bank and State Bank of India have branches at Rayagada.
- A good number of luxurious hotels, three-star hotels and other economical comfortable hotels serving variety of cuisines.
- The famous Majhi Ghariani Temple of Rayagada.
- Well-connected by train and bus to major cities of India.
- JK groups Paper Plant is located in Jayakayapur of this district.
- IMFAS main plant is located at Therubali of this district.
- Hanging (Jhula) Bridge at Chakagudda.
- "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01.
- As evident by Andhra Historical Journal XXVII edition at page 46
- The rock inscription of Allahbad inscribed by Mahamantri Harisena provides evidence to this effect.
- A rock inscription found at Pataleswar temple in Brahmi script provides an evidence to this effect.
- "State Elections 2004 - Partywise Comparison for 82-Rayagada Constituency of Odisha". Election Commission of India. Retrieved 2008-09-18.
- "Assembly Constituencies - Corresponding Districts and Parliamentary Constituencies of Odisha" (PDF). Election Commission of India. Retrieved 2008-09-18.