Fort of Mundra
|Elevation||14 m (46 ft)|
|• Official||Gujarati, Hindi|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Vehicle registration||starting with GJ 12|
Mundra was well known for salt and spice trading in the past and now more for tie-dye and block-print textiles. The harbor is virtually unusable today, and only small local fishing craft navigate its silted waterways up the river.
Old Mundra town was walled and fortified with the masonry from the ruins of ancient town of Bhadresar, twenty seven kilometre to the north-east. The town was associated with Cutch State. Fortified in 1728 by Devkarn Seth, Mundra was in 1755 held and defended by Godji when in revolt from his father. In 1801 it was given by Fateh Muhammad to Dosal Ven, and in 1815, when held by Muhammad Sota, was unsuccessfully attacked by Rao Bharmalji. In 1818 it is said to had a population of 1200 souls and to have yielded a revenue of £3000 (Rs 30,000). In 1855 it was in good repair and contained 1500 houses. In 1861, it was noted for petty carpets of stamped cotton. In 1879, there was a considerable trade with Kathiawar, Khambhat, Surat, and Bombay, the chief exports being cotton, castor seed, pulse, wool and dyed cloth and the chief imports were metals, timber, grain, dates, grocery , and piece goods. In 1872, it had population of 7952.
After independence of India in 1947, Cutch State acceded unto the dominion of India and was constituted an independent commissionaire, Kutch State. In 1956, Kutch State was merged with Bombay state, which in 1960 was divided into the new linguistic states of Gujarat and Maharashtra, with Kutch becoming part of Gujarat state. Mundra now falls under Kutch district of Gujarat.
In 1994, the Mundra Port was announced at Mundra. The operation started in October 1998. In subsequent years, the port expanded rapidly resulting in rapid expansion of town and population. During the January 2001 Gujarat earthquake, Mundra was the only place in the district of Kutch which was not affected by this devastation. Following earthquake, the tax incentives were granted for setting up new industries in this district which led to the rapid industrialisation of this region. In 2014, Mundra Port surpassed Kandla in cargo handling and became the largest private port of India.
Places of Interest
- The Mahadev temple has memorials to some sailors of town, including some who advised the Sultan of Zanzibar and guided Vasco da Gama to India.
- Dariya Pir, the patron saint of Kutchi fisherpeople, arrived Mundra from Bukhara (now in Uzbekistan) in 1660. He was welcomed by the locals, introduced them to Islam, and they built the shrine dedicated to him when he died. This shrine receives visitors of many religious backgrounds seeking blessings. The Mughal Emperor built a gate in his honor, which still stands and is known today as the Mughal Gate.
- Fortification : The walls of the old city fortifications have a religious origin, as they were dragged from the ruins of the ancient city of Bhadravati (now Bhadresar).
- Navlakha Palace: a very large and handsome two-storied rest-house built by a Khoja of Bhadresar
- a canopy, chhatra raised over the footprints, padukas of a Jain high priest of the Anchal Gaccha, 131⁄2 feet square inside, with a small spire over the marble slab on which the footprints arc engraved. The inside of the dome is neatly carved with a row of standing musicians. The outside of the dome is modern, but the screen wall, pillars, and interior are all old in thirteenth or fourteenth century style. As the inscription round the footprints is dated 1744, this shrine is probably the hall, mandap of an old temple. The front of the spire, shikhar over the marble slab boars the footprints of the Guru Hanssagar, the disciple of the Guru Jivaji, who died in Margashirsha Vad 10th of Samvat 1797 (1740 AD). Near this tomb is a memorial stone, palia, apparently, from the figure of a ship carved on it, raised to some seafarer.
- At Baroi, about a mile from Mundra, enclosed in a small court, is a temple of Nilkanth Mahadev, or the blue -necked Shiv, with, at the right side of the shrine door, an inscription dated 1667 (Samvat 1724). The ling is overshadowed by a large seven -headed brass snake. It is said to have been brought from the Shiva temple of Duda at Bhadresar.
Geography and environment
The town has flat terrain. The quality of water in this region is very poor and has a high fluoride content.
Gaddhasar or Shastri Ground is major playground in town. The transportation and medical facilities are available. Dabeli and Kadak are popular snacks of town. Oswal Sheri is one of the oldest street.
The main source of income for the local people is agriculture, horticulture and wage labour. Several people are employed in port and power stations.
There are two thermal power stations adjacent to Mundra, Mundra Ultra Mega Power Plant operated by Tata Power and Mundra Thermal Power Station operated by Adani Power. These power station generates over 8,600 MW of electricity. The coal for the power plant is imported primarily from Indonesia. Source of water for the power plant is sea water from the Gulf of Kutch.
- Gazetteer of the Bombay Presidency: Cutch, Palanpur, and Mahi Kantha (Public Domain text). Printed at the Government Central Press. 1880. pp. 213–215, 244–245.
- "4000 MW Mundra Ultra Mega Power Project (UMPP)".
- "Indonesian nightmare for Tata, Adani, JSW, Lanco".