Khordha Itihasara Antarale By fakhir Harichandana

Khordha is one of the new districts carved out of the former Puri District on 1st April, 1993. The other new district carved out of Puri was Nayagarh. In the year 2000, the district’s name was changed from Khurda to Khordha. The district headquarters is located in Khordha Town, formerly known as Jajarsingh or Kurada, (kurada means foul mouthed). The old milestones of the area had the word Kurda which have now been white washed and the word “Khurdha” is written on them. About the origin of the word Khurda (as earlier called) it is also told that the word is derived from two Odia words- “Khura” and “Dhara”, meaning razor and edge, probably because the soldiers of Khurda were as sharp and dreadful as the edge of a razor. Neither of the two origins, however, can be called authentic.

The history of Khordha depicts that in early days the area was densely populated by the Savaras, a tribal community who are still found in some pockets of the district. Over the period, however, its history is found closely associated with the history of Puri district. About the middle of the 10th century A.D. the rule of Bhoumakars was supplanted by that of the Somavamsis. Yayati-2, Mahasiva Gupta was the first Somavamsi king to occupy eastern Odisha. He and his son Udyot Mahabhava Gupta were great temple builders and the Lingaraj temple at Bhubaneswar has been attributed to them. The last king of this dynasty was Karnadeva, who was defeated and killed by Chodaganga Deva about 1110 A.D. Khordha ascended to eminence and glory at the time of the first King of Khordha dynasty Ramachandra Deva who selected Khordha as the capital of his kingdom in the later part of 16th Century. The reason was its strategic location as Khordha was guarded by Barunei Hill on one side and dense forest on the other.

Despite repeated onslaughts from Maratha and Muslim cavalry, it managed to maintain the glory of its independence of royal fort till 1803. Therefore, the Royal Fort is spelt with reverence as “Khordha