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This article is about the municipality in Odisha, India. For its namesake district, see Rayagada district.
Rayagada Railway Station
Rayagada Railway Station
Rayagada is located in Odisha
Rayagada is located in India
Location in Odisha, India
Coordinates: 19°10′N 83°25′E / 19.17°N 83.42°E / 19.17; 83.42Coordinates: 19°10′N 83°25′E / 19.17°N 83.42°E / 19.17; 83.42
Country  India
State Odisha
District Rayagada
Elevation 207 m (679 ft)
Population (2016)
 • Total 73,308
 • Official Odia
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)
PIN 765001
Telephone code 06856
Vehicle registration OR, OD-18

Rayagada is a municipality in Rayagada district in the Indian state of Odisha. It is the administrative headquarters of Rayagada district.


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.

The nearby towns are Gunupur, Gudari muniguda and nearby villages are Gumma, Kiyapadu, JayKaypur, Pitamahal etc.


As of 2001 India census,[1] 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. The population of Rayagada town as per 2011 census is 71,208 out of which male population is 36,036 and female population is 35,172.[2]


In the third century BC, during the reign of Ashoka the Great, it was under Kalinga empire (ancient Odisha). The hilly track between Vamsadhara and Nagavali was famous for spices.[3] The Rastriks were defeated by Kharvela, the only Aryan Emperor of Kalinga (ancient Odisha), during the Chawpagada battle. The rock inscription of Allahbad inscribed by Mahamantri Harisena provides evidence to this effect.

During the rule of Gangavansi and Suryavanshi Kings in Odisha, it was under feudatory chief of Kalinga-Utkala empire Dadarnab Dev of Gudari Kataka. A rock inscription found at Pataleswar temple in Brahmi script provides an evidence to this effect. 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[edit]

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 Kondhs and the Souras.


Rayagada railway station is an important station from where direct trains are available to Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bhubaneswar, Raipur, New Delhi, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Puri, Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram and other cities.

See Rayagada district and Gunupur for more details of railway lines in the district.

List of the trains running from Rayagada railway station :-
#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
37 18638 Yesvantpur - Hatia Weekly Express
38 18574 Bhagat Ki Kothi - Visakhapatnam Weekly Express
39 19454 Puri - Gandhidham Weekly Express
40 58301 Sambalpur - Koraput Passenger (UnReserved)
Maa Majhighariani, Rayagada
Rayagada Bus Stand
Rayagada Greenery
Jagannath temple, Rayagada
Maa Mangala Maa Temple, Rayagada

Tourist attractions[edit]

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 Madhya Pradesh Chhatishgarh, Andhra Pradesh 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 Nagavali.
  • 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.
  • Padmapur houses the shrine of Manikeswari Siva. It is identified to be the seat of Dharmakirti, the Buddhist-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.
  • RAYGADA KORAPUT RAILWAY LINE: the distance form Rayagada to Koraput is about 176 km this route is full of adventure since there 36 tunnels 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 at Chekaguda that 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
  • Jagannath Temple at Rayagada : The temple has been rebuilt with a new look to attract the tourist mass. The Car festival is celebrated here in the month of Asadha every year.
  • GUMA GHATI: it is about 20 km from Rayagada it is surrounded by dense forest n[clarification needed] very good place to see. Many people come here to picnic. A small water fall is here. One of the most beautiful landscapes with wild animals in the dense forest and the forest is filled with Teak Wood exported all over.
  • In addition, the list of Temples in Rayagada is quite long.

Bhimasankar Jyotirlinga[edit]

Bhimshankar Jyotirlinga(Dakinyam) temple at Bhimpur

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.[citation needed]

Fairs and festivals[edit]

Chaiti Festival Rayagada
  • 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 near Jagannath temple
  • 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 and Brahmin street, Rayagada in October.
  • Annual celebration of Gram Devata during March–April (9 days) at Rayagada
  • A Ganesh puja at the Kasturi Nagar and 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 one of the famous at new colony in Rayagada Dist...
  • Eid celebration at Rayagada and J.K.Pur is very famous across District.
  • Christmas Celebration at Baptist Church, Sastrinagar, Rayagagada
  • Ganesh puja and MajjiGouri Puja at SriRam Nagar, near IOB.

Notable people[edit]


Though a tribal dominated area, the focus on education has been there since long. Preschool education icon Kidzee with Interactive iLLUME, designed to help the child realize her unique abilities in a systematic, synergetic, and self-paced manner is established recently. GCD High School holds a prominent place being the oldest in the region. Govt. Girls' High School, Rayagada has been established since 1964 to develop women education in Rayagada. Gopabandhu Municipal High School another educational institution has been critical in educating children of this town.Now it has the facility of Kendriya Vidyalaya i.e.Kendriya Vidyalaya, Rayagada. The other schools in the region are Sacred Heart School, Deepti Convent School, Maharshi Vidya Mandir, St. Xavier's High School, Saraswati Sisu Vidya Mandir School (HSE), Divine Public School, Rayagada, L.P.S. Public School, L.P.S School (JAYKAYPUR),Vignan Vidyalaya,[4] Green Valley Public School(PENTA) and N.V.R Educational Institution.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. A Primary School runs in the complex of Thakkar Bapa Ashram since 1958 to impart education to tribal boys and girls. The Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya of Rayagada district, affiliated to CBSE, is functioning at Bissam Cuttack.

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 near by river Nagavali and imparts diploma courses in several branches of engineering.

GIACR, formerly IACR, has given credibility to the education system in more than one ways.IACR has produced young talents for the IT sector of India and world. Mr. P. Dinakar and Mr. P.C Mishra has made it a premier organisation in Odisha. It draws the attraction of some global tech. giants like TCS, INFOSYS, WIPRO for their recruitment process.

ORITECH Computer Edcuation Registered IT Firm under Govt. of Odisha, Rayagada, providing computer training to poor trible youth with very very low fees structure with 100% practical knowledge and certifies them with Registered Govt. of Odisha Certificate. ORITECH has produced young talents for the IT sector of Odisha and India. Mr. Rajesh Naidu has made it a premier organisation in Rayagada. It students are working in almost all Government sectors in Rayagada and all over Odisha and some of its students are working in IT giants like CT and T's Bell Labs, TCS, WIPRO etc.


District & Sessions Court, Rayagada

The headquarters of Rayagada judgeship is located at Rayagada.[5] The Court of District and Sessions Judge-cum- Special Judge, Court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, Court of Senior Civil Judge, Court of Sub Divisional Judicial Magistrate in addition to other revenue courts, are established here. The High Court of Orissa being the highest judicial authority of the state, all the judicial Courts of the district are under the direct control of the District and Sessions Judge, Rayagada. Presently, the Court of Nyayadhikari, Gram Nyayalaya, Kolnara is functioning at Rayagada.

In addition, the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Rayagada functions at the headquarters for disposal of consumer disputes.

Literary contributions[edit]

Rayagada is well known for its contribution to Oriya literature. There are number of cultural magazines continuously published from Rayagada. 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 the 1980s the magazines published by sri B.P. Rath, like Green Room has revolutionised 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 Janata Dal, who won the seat in State elections in 2009 Lalbihari Himirika of BJD had won this seat in 2000.[6] 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).[7] Shri Jayram Pangi (Biju Janta Dal) won the general election 2009 defeating Dr. Giridhar Gomango (INC) who represented this constituency 9 times. Current MP is Jhina Hikaka who won in 2014 elections.

Hanging (Jhula) Bridge at Chakagudda, Rayagada


  • 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.
  • IMFA'S main plant is located at Therubali of this district.
  • Hanging (Jhula) Bridge at Chekagudda.
  • Purnachandra Bidika, the Gold medalist in Asian Power lifting Championship & Anup Satapathy, the well known and only Magician of the district,belong to Rayagada.[8][9]
  • Rayagada becomes Polythene-free Town from 1 April 2015[10]
  • The Rayagada area became the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rayagada on Monday, 11 April 2016, having been newly erected by Pope Francis, with the Reverend Father Aplinar Senapati, CM, as Bishop-elect; it will be a part of the Province of the Archdiocese of ,Cuttack-Bhubaneswar, both nearby cities.


  1. ^ "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. 
  2. ^ "Population of Rayagada". http://www.censusindia.gov.in. Census of India. Retrieved 16 June 2015.  External link in |website= (help)
  3. ^ As evident by Andhra Historical Journal XXVII edition at page 46
  4. ^ http://www.vignanvidyalaya.com
  5. ^ "Official site of Rayagada district Court"
  6. ^ "State Elections 2004 - Partywise Comparison for 82-Rayagada Constituency of Odisha". Election Commission of India. Retrieved 2008-09-18. 
  7. ^ "Assembly Constituencies - Corresponding Districts and Parliamentary Constituencies of Odisha" (PDF). Election Commission of India. Retrieved 2008-09-18. 
  8. ^ "The Telegraph" News dated 08.02.2015
  9. ^ " Anup Satapathy described in Samayara Pratifalana: Oriya magazine"
  10. ^ "Rayagada becomes Polythene-free News dated 29.03.2015 in dharitri.com

External links[edit]