Tehri Garhwal

Tehri Garhwal

Infobox Indian Jurisdiction
native_name=Tehri Garhwal

district_name= Tehri Garhwal
district=Tehri Garhwal
latd = 30.3833| longd = 78.4833

Tehri Garhwal is one of the largest districts in the hill state of Uttarakhand, India. Its administrative headquarters is at New Tehri. The district has a population of 604,747 (2001 census), a 16.15% increase over the previous decade. It is surrounded by Rudraprayag District in the east, Dehradun District in the west, Uttarkashi District in the north, and Pauri Garhwal District in the south.

Origin of the name

The name Tehri has been derived from ‘Trihari’, signifying a place that washes away the three types of sins - sins born out of Mansa, Vacha and Karmana or thought, word and deed, respectively. ‘Garh’ in Hindi means fort. Prior to 888 AD, the region was divided into 52 garhs which were ruled by independent kings. These garhs were brought under one province by Kanakpal, the prince of Malwa. Kanakpal, on his visit to Badrinath, had met the then mightiest king Bhanu Pratap who later married his only daughter to the prince and handed him his kingdom. Kanakpal and his descendants gradually conquered all the garhs and ruled the whole of Garhwal region for the next 915 years, up to 1803 AD.

Major towns

1) New Tehri
2) Narendranagar
3) Chamba4)lamgaon

Administrative setup

The district of Tehri Garhwal is divided into two subdivisions: Kirti Nagar and Tehri-Pratap Nagar. It has seven Tahsils, one sub-Tahsil, nine blocks, two municipalities and four town area committees. The district covers 76 Nyaya Panchayats and 928 Gram Panchayats. It has 1847 revenue villages and 2508 clusters.



Tehri Garhwal or Garhwal Kingdom, was a princely state, ruled by Panwar (Shah) dynasty. Later it became a part of the Punjab Hill States Agency of British India, which consisted of present-day Tehri Garhwal District and most of Uttarkashi district. It had an area of about 4180 m²/ 11,655 km² and a population of 268,885 in 1901. The ruler was originally titled Raja and since 1913 Maharaja; the salute state was entitled to 11-guns and had a privy purse of 300.000 rupees, acceeding to India on 1 August 1949.

Gorkha menace

In 1803 AD, the Gorkhas took over Garhwal [ [http://www.1911encyclopedia.org/Garhwal Garhwal] 1911.] . Gorkha warriors Subba Amar Singh, Hastidal Chautariya, Bamshah Chautariya and Ranjor Thapa commanded a huge army in the crusade against King Pradyumna Shah and his sons Kuwar Parakrama Shah and Kuwar Pritam Shah. A 12,000 strong army fought with the Gorkhas at Khurhbure where the king was killed. Gradually, Gorkhas captured Dehradun, Saharanpur, Kangada and Shimla and later on extended their kingdom up to Kangara.

During 1787 AD to 1812 AD, Gorkhas captured nearly 200 villages falling under East India Company. British argued with the king of Nepal but to no avail. Finally, the Gurkha War (Anglo-Nepalese War), began in 1814, when an army of 8000 under Major General Marley attacked Kathmandu, 4000 soldiers under Major General Wood started operation from Gorakhpur, and 3500 soldiers attempted to take over Dehradun under Major General Zileswy, where Gorkha army of 300–400 was led by Balbhadra Thapa. Gorkhas fought a fierce battle and crushed the British, which was reinforced by soldiers and cannons. Finally, British army captured Dehradun on 30 Nov 1814.

British Army then moved towards Kumaon. After a fierce battle Gorkha commanders Hastidal and Jayrakha were killed at Vinayathal. The war ended under the Sugauli Treaty, signed on December 2, 1815 and ratified by March 4, 1816, with Gorkha supreme commander Bamshah and thus, British rule started in hills. East India Company then merged Kumaon, Dehradun and east Garhwal in British Empire while west Garhwal was given to Sudarshan Shah which was then known as Tehri Riyasat.

New capital

King Sudarshan Shah established his capital at Tehri town and afterwards his successors Pratap Shah, Kirti Shah and Narendra Shah established their capital at Pratap Nagar, Kirti Nagar and Narendra Nagar, respectively. Their dynasty ruled over this region from 1815 to 1949. During the Quit India Movement people of this region actively participated for the independence of the country. Ultimately when the country was declared independent in 1947, the inhabitants of Tehri Riyasat started their movement for getting themselves freed from the clutches of Maharaja.

Due to the movement the situation became out of his control and was difficult for him to rule over the region. Consequently the 60th king of Pawar Vansh Manvendra Shah accepted the sovereignty of Indian government. Thus, in 1949, Tehri Riyasat was merged in Uttar Pradesh and was given the status of a new district. Resultantly on 24 February 1960 the state government separated its one tehsil which was given status of a separate district named as Uttarkashi.

Modern developments

In the 1960s Tehri Garhwal went much further east that it currently does. ["Times World Atlas", 1967 Edition, Plate 30.] In 1997 much of the eastern portion of Tehri Garhwal was detached and merged with portions of Pauri Garhwal district and Chamoli district to form Rudraprayag district.

External links

* [http://tehri.nic.in Tehri Garhwal district website]

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