Copyright
William Wilson Hunter.

The imperial gazetteer of India (Volume 8) online

. (page 34 of 64)
Online LibraryWilliam Wilson HunterThe imperial gazetteer of India (Volume 8) → online text (page 34 of 64)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


was adopted under the name of Sivaji 11. The prevalence of
piracy from the Kolhapur port of Mai wan compelled the Bombay
Government to send expeditions against Kolhapur in 1765, and again
in 1792, when the Raja agreed to give compensation for the losses
which British merchants had sustained since 1785, and to permit
the establishment of factories at Malwan and Kolhapur. Internal
dissensions and wars with the neighbouring States of Patwardhans,
Sawantwari, and Nipani gradually weakened the power of Kolhapur.
In 181 1, a treaty was concluded with the British Government, by
which, in return for the cession of certain forts, the Kolhapur chief was
guaranteed against the attacks of foreign powers ; while on his part he
engaged to abstain from hostilities with other States, and to refer all
disputes to the arbitration of the British Government.

During the war with the Peshwa in 181 7, the Raja of Kol-
hapur sided with the British. In reward, the tracts of Chikori
and Manoli, formerly wrested from him by the chief of Nipani,
were restored to him. But these tracts did not remain long in
the possession of the Raja of Kolhapur ; they were taken back
from him by the British Government in 1829, as the then Raja
did not act in accordance with the treaty entered into by him.
Shahaji, alias Bawa Sahib, who came to the throne in 1822, proved a
quarrelsome and profligate ruler; and in consequence of his aggressions
between 1822 and 1829, the British were three times obliged to move
a force against him. On his death in 1838, a council of regency was
formed to govern during the minority of Sivaji in. Quarrels arose
among the members of this council, and the consequent anarchy led to
the appointment by the British Government of a minister of its own.
The efforts, however, which he made to reform the administration gave
rise to a general rebellion, which extended to the neighbouring State
of Sawantwari. After the suppression of this rising, all the forts were
dismantled, and the system of hereditary garrisons was abolished.
The military force of the State was disbanded, and replaced by a local
corps.

In 1862, a treaty was concluded with Sivaji m., who was bound



KOLHAPUR. 2S3

in all matters of importance to be guided by the advice of the
British Government. In 1866, on his death-bed, Sivaji was allowed to
adopt a successor in his sister's son, Rdja Ram. In 1S70, Rij
proceeded on a tour in Europe, and, while on his return journey to
India, died at Florence on the 30th November 1870.

Sivaji Maharaja Chhatrapati iv. succeeded Rdjd. Ram by adoption.
He was invested with the Knighthood of the Order of the Star of
India. In 1882 he became insane, and Government was compelled
to appoint a Council of Regency, headed by the chief of Kagal as
Regent. Sivaji iv. died on the 25th December 1883 ; and having no
issue, was succeeded by adoption by Yeshwant Rao, alias Baba Sahib,
under the name of Shahaji. He is the eldest son of the Regent, and
a lad of about nine years of age.

The Raja of Kolhapur holds a patent authorizing adoption, and the
succession follows the rule of primogeniture. He is entitled to a salute
of 19 guns, and is empowered to try his own subjects for capital
offences, without permission from the Political Agent.

Population. — In 1872, the population of the State was returned at
804,103. According to the Census of 1881, it amounted to 800,189.
There has thus been a decrease of 3914 in nine years. In 1881 the
males numbered 410,647, females 389,542. The people are scattered
through 5 towns and 1056 villages, and occupy 129,148 houses; un-
occupied houses number 16,036. The density of population is 284
persons per square mile; towns and villages per square mile, "376;
houses per square mile, 51*5 ; persons per house, 6.

Of the 1 06 1 towns and villages in the State, 184 contain less than
two hundred inhabitants ; 382 between two and five hundred ; 306
between five hundred and one thousand; 123 between one and two
thousand; 34 between two and three thousand; 27 between three and
five thousand; 4 between five and ten thousand ; and 1 between twenty
and fifty thousand. The five towns in Kolhapur State with a popula-
tion above 5000 are — Karvir (38,599); Inchalkaranji (9107);
Shirol (6944); Kagal (6371); and Gadh Hinglaj (5002).

The male population is thus distributed as regards occupation—
(1) Professional class, including officials and the learned professions,
18,884; (2) domestic servants, inn and lodging-house keepers, 41S4;

(3) commercial class, including bankers, merchants, carriers, etc., 374S ;

(4) agricultural and pastoral class, including shepherds, 289,253; (5)
industrial class, including all manufacturers and artisans, 37,182 ; and
(6) indefinite and non-productive class, comprising general labourers,
male children, and persons of unspecified occupation, 57, 396.

Classified according to religion, there are — Hindus, 719,164, or
more than 89 per cent, of the whole population ; Muhammadans,
33,022; Christians, 1253; Jains, 46,732; Parsi, 1 ; Buddhists, 12; and



284 KOLHAPUR.

Jews, 5. Among Hindus, Brahmans number 29,446; Rajputs, 1500;
Berads, 5277; Dhangars, 38,326; Kumbhars (potters), 8509; Lingayats
(mostly traders), 72,391; Mahars (inferior caste), 65,314; Chamars,
10,219; Kunbis, 362,158; Mangs, 13,323; Sutars, 11,451; Koshti,
5924; Napits, 7476; Darjis, 5666; Dhobis, 5208. The Muhammadans
are thus sub-divided — Shaikhs, 25,984; Sayyids, 4104; Pathans, 2186;
and unspecified, 748.

Trade, etc. — The principal manufactures are pottery, hardware,
coarse cotton, woollen cloth, felt, paper, liquor, perfumes, and lac
and glass ornaments. Coarse sugar, tobacco, cotton, and grain are
the chief exports; and sugar, spices, cocoa-nuts, piece-goods, silk,
salt, and sulphur are the principal imports. The most noteworthy
centres of local trade with permanent markets are Kolhapur town,
Shirol, Wadgaon, Alta, Inchalkaranji, Kagal, and Malkapur. Six prin-
cipal lines of road pass through Kolhapur territory, the most important
being that from Poona to Belgaum, which crosses the State from north
to south.

Revenue, Administration, etc. — There are thirteen more or less im-
portant estates, including the four feudatories of the Kolhapur Raj,
viz. Vishalgarh, Bavra, Kagal, Inchalkaranji, Jagatguru, Guru Maharaj,
Torgal, Kapsi, Dattaji Rao, Datwad, Himat Bahadur, Sir Lashkar,
and Patankar ; their chiefs pay a nazar or tribute to Kolhapur on
succession, and also usually an annual contribution. Accounts of
them will be found under their respective names ; the principal are
Vishalgarh, Bavra, Kagal, and Inchalkaranji. The gross annual
revenue of Kolhapur State in 1882-83 was ^221,976. The actual
income of the chief is given at ^"167,400. He maintains a military
force of 1684 men. Exclusive of a few missionary institutions, there
are (1882) in all 174 schools. There is also a Provincial College,
which was organized in 1880. The total number of pupils on the rolls
is returned at 10,419. There is a native library, a local newspaper, and
n reading rooms established in the State. The cost of education
in 1882-83 was ;£8ioo. Seven petty chiefs attend the Rajkumar class
of the Rajaram College. The Forest Department cleared a profit of
^1765 in 1882. There are municipalities at Kolhapur, Narsobachi
Vadi, Inchalkaranji, and Kagal. Strength of police, 646 men, main-
tained at a cost of ^6637. In 1882-83, 3 8 ° 6 persons were brought
before the 38 magisterial courts of the State. The central jail at
Kolhapur has an average daily population of 164; cost per prisoner,
£% 12s. There are 13 subordinate jails. The telegraph and postal
systems are maintained by the British Government.

Climate and Medical Aspects. — At an elevation of about 1800 feet
above the sea, Kolhapur enjoys on the whole a temperate climate. In
the west, with its heavy rainfall and timber-covered hills and valleys,



KOLHAPUR TOWN—KOLKAI. 2S5

the air keeps cool throughout the year ; but in the plain dry tracts
beyond the hills, suffocating easterly winds prevail from April to June.
During the hot weather months, the hill forts, rising about 1000 feet
above the plain, afford a pleasant retreat. The ordinary forms of si< k-
ness are fevers, diarrhoea, cholera, dysentery, and small-pox. A State
medical service has been organized. In 1882, the registered death-
rate was 23 per 1000, and the birth-rate 33 per 1000.

Kolh&pur (or Kolldpura, Karavira, or Karvir). — Capital of Kol-
hapur State, Bombay Presidency, and residence of the chief ; situated
in lat. 1 6° 42' n., and long. 74 16' e., opposite a gap in the Sahyadri
Hills ; 144 miles south by east from Poona, and 76 from Satara.
Population (1872) 37,663 ; (1881) 38,599, namely, 19,335 niales and
19,264 females. Hindus numbered 33,583 ; Muhammadans, 3734 ;
Jains, 1 107; Christians, 164; Parsi, 1; and 'others,' 10.

A picturesque native capital, thronged by traders from many parts,
each in his national habit. Much has recently been done to improve
the sanitation of the town, and to adorn it with handsome edifices.
Some of the new public buildings of Kolhapur challenge comparison
with the most successful efforts of modern Indian architecture. The
income of the municipality in 1882-83 was ^4579-

Kolhapur has long been held in high esteem for the antiquity of its
sacred shrines ; and all current legends state that the present capital
originally existed as a purely religious settlement, of which the great
temple dedicated to che goddess Mahalakshmi remains to mark the
site. The cloisters, which formerly surrounded this great temple, now
lie buried many feet under the surface of the earth, which appears
to have undergone at no distant period a serious convulsion. The
extreme antiquity of Kolhapur is borne out by the numerous Buddhist
remains that have been discovered in the immediate neighbourhood,
and notably by a crystal relic casket found in a large stitpa, about
1880, bearing on its lid an inscription in Asoka characters of the 3rd
century B.C. Small temples are frequently brought to light by excava-
tions. It is believed that Karavira is the older and more important
capital of the State, and that the transfer of the political capital, from
Karavira to the originally religious settlement of Kolhapur, was pro-
bably necessitated by some convulsion of nature of which there are
so many evidences in the neighbourhood of Kolhapur. The ancient
Karavira is now a petty village on the north side of the present town
of Kolhapur.

Kolikodu. — Town in Malabar District, Madras Presidency.— See
Calicut.

Kolkai (or Korkai). — Village in Tenkarai tdluk> Tinnevelli Dis-
trict, Madras Presidency. Lat. 8° 40' n., long. 78 6' e. Population
(1881) 2386. Number of houses, 677. Hindus numbered 2125;



286 KOLLADAM—KOMBAL

Christians, 250; and Muhammadans, 11. Now an inland town, but
once a seaport at the mouth of the Tambraparni river, and the earliest
seat of South Indian civilisation, where (according to tradition) the
brothers Chera, Chola, and Pandya dwelt together before founding
the three kingdoms that bore their respective names. Ko'akoi l^piov
is mentioned by Ptolemy ; and in the Periplus as the seat of King
Pandya's pearl-fishery. It is referred to in the Peutinger Tables as
' Colcis Indorum,' and gave its name to the Colchic Gulf, now known
as Manaar. The silt of the Tambraparni river has spread seaward,
so that this once celebrated port is at present 5 miles from the coast.
Kayal {Kail, Koil), where Marco Polo stopped for a time, succeeded
Kolkai as the port of Madura; but it also has been left 2 miles
inland by the sea, and the insignificant village of Palayakayal has
been identified as the site of this once important city and sea-
port. The present Kayalpatam (q.v.) succeeded Kayal as the port of

Madura.

Kolladam.— The northern mouth of the Kaveri (Cauvery) river,
Madras Presidency.—^ Coleroon.

Kollamallai.— Mountain range in Salem District, Madras Presi-
dency ; lying in the Atiir and Namakal taluks. Lat. n° 10' 30" to n°
28' n., and long. 78 20' 30" to 78 31' 30" e. Estimated area, 180
square miles; 13 ndds or hill-divisions, with 3023 houses and (1881)
10,965 inhabitants. General elevation from 2500 to 3500 feet ; highest
point in the range, 4663 feet above sea-level. The population includes
a number of Malayalis, or hillmen of the same race as those described
in the article on the Shevaroy Hills. The Kotas, a tribe character-
istic of the Nilgiris, have a tradition that the Kollamallai Hills are the
cradle of the race. The Kollamallais are cultivated in many parts, and
furnish the surrounding country with forest produce — sandal-wood,
black-wood, and other valuable timbers, firewood, and charcoal. They
bear an evil reputation at certain seasons for malarious fever of a deadly
type.

Roller (or Kolleru\ — Lake in Kistna and Godavari Districts, Madras
Presidency. — See Kolar.

Kolltir. — Ghat or pass in South Kanara District, Madras Presidency.
Lat. 13 52' to 13 53' 20" n., and long. 74 53' to 74 54' E. One of
the principal passes in the Western Ghats, connecting the plateau of
Mysore and Coorg with the low plains of Kanara.

Kolong. — tillage in Kangra District, Punjab. — See Kolang.

Kombai. — Town in Peryakulam taluk, Madura District, Madras
Presidency. Lat. 9 51' 30" n., long. 77 17' e. Population (1871)
8708; (1881) 5792. Number of houses, 1523. Hindus numbered
5192; Christians, 384; and Muhammadans, 216. Kombai was one of
the 72 ' Palaiyams ' of Madura.



KOMORIN—KONDA VIR. 2 8 7

Komorin. — Cape in Travancore State, Madras Presidency. — See
Comorin.

Komulmair. — Pass in Udaipur (Oodeypore) State, Rajputana.
Lat 25 9' N., long. 73 40' e. ; 50 miles north of Udaipur city, and
90 south-east of Jodhpur. The pass runs through a series of rugged
ravines in the Aravalli range, and is defended by a fortress, which was
acquired in 18 18 by the East India Company. Elevation above sea-
level, 8353 feet.

Konch. — Tahsil and town in Jalaun District, Xorth-Western Pro-
vinces. — See Kunch.

Kondapalli. — Town and hill fortress in Bezwada taluk, Kistna
District, Madras Presidency. Lat. 16 37' 59" n., long. 8o° 34' 17" e.
Population (1871) 5207 ; (1881) 4289. Number of houses, 973.
Hindus numbered 3391, and Muhammadans 8981. Now unimportant,
but formerly a fortress of some strength, giving its name to a Province
known to the Musalmans as Mustafanagar or Mustafabad. It was in
fact the capital of one of the 5 Northern Circars, and was a frequently
contested point for two and a half centuries. The hill fort was con-
structed, circ. 1360, by the Reddis of Kondavir. It was taken by the
Bahmani king, Muhammad Shah 11., in 147 1, from the Orissa Rajas,
and in 1477 from a revolted garrison. Falling again into the hands of
the Orissa Rajas, it was taken by Krishna Raya circ. 15 15, and by
Sultan Kuli Kutab Shah in 152 1. It surrendered to the troops of
the Emperor Aurangzeb in 1687, and on March 10, 1766, was taken
by assault, by General Caillaud, from the Nizam. The old enclosure
of the walled city is now chiefly occupied by corn-fields, but the ruins
of the citadel remain on the overhanging hill. A small British
garrison was stationed here till January 1859. The barracks have been
converted into a public bungalow. At Kondapalli there is a special
local industry, the manufacture of small figures and toys from a very
light wood (Gyrocarpus Jacquini), which grows on the hills in its
neighbourhood.

Kondavir ( Condaveed; Ko?idavidic; Kondhir ; Kondaver — Hamilton).
—Town and fort in Narsaraopet taluk, Kistna District, Madras Presi-
dency. Lat. 16° 15' 15" n., long. 8o° 17' 25" e. Population (1SS1)
1746. Number of houses, 418. Hindus numbered 1533; Muham-
madans, 124; and Christians, 4.

Once the capital of a Province of the same name, extending from the
Kistna to the Gundlakamma (Orme). Constructed in the 1 2th century by
the Orissa Rajas, the hill fortress above the town of Kondavir, on a ridge
running in a north-east and south-west direction for 9^ miles, was the
seat of the Reddi dynasty (1328-1428), was taken by Krishna Raya
about 15 1 6, and by Sultan Kuli Kutab Shah of Golconda in 1531,
1536, and 1579. It was termed Murtizanagar by the Muhammadans.



288 KONDA YAPOLLAM—KONGNOLL

The French obtained the Province in 1752, and in 1757 starved out
a garrison of local insurgents. Kondavir was made over to the
English Company in 1788.

The highest point of the hill is 170 1 feet above sea-level. The village
situated at the western foot of the central ridge, 5 furlongs north-east of
the fort. The old town of Kondavir was to the east of the village, in the
triangular valley between the ridges. The fort, 1050 feet (described by
Mr. Boswell in the Indian Antiquary, vol. i. p. 182), is of large extent even
now, and many parts of it, including granaries, palace, etc., are in good
repair. There are one or two European bungalows here, and the place
was for a time used as a sanitarium by the officers of Guntiir. The only
industry worth notice is the extraction of essences and fragrant oils from
jasmine and other plants, which are sent to Haidarabad for sale.

Kondayapollam. — Town in Udayagiri taluk, Nellore District,
Madras Presidency. Population (1881) 3885; houses, 930. Hindus
numbered 2762, and Muhammadans 1123.

Kondka {Chhuikaddn). — Petty State attached to Raipur District,
Central Provinces; lying at the foot of the Saletekri Hill, and dating
from 1750 a.d. Area, 174 square miles; number of villages, 109;
number of houses, 9669. Total population (1881) 32,979, namely,
males 16,267, and females 16,712 ; average density of population, 189-5
persons per square mile. The area in the plains, which is fertile and
well cultivated, comprises 101 villages ; the largest of which contains
400 huts or houses, with over 1000 inhabitants. Chief products,
wheat, gram, cotton, etc. The chief resides in a substantial stone
building, standing in a fortified square. He is a Bairagi, but belongs
to a sect among which marriage is permitted. He pays to the British
Government a yearly tribute of ^"noo. His estimated annual income
is ^2203.

Kongnoli. — Town in the Chikori Sub-division of Belgaum District,
Bombay Presidency. Situated in lat. 16 32' 30" n., and long. 74 24' e.,
4 miles north of Sadalgi, and 22 miles north-west of Chikori on the
Belgaum-Kolhapur road, in the extreme north-west corner of Belgaum
District. The town has a large trade, sending rice to Belgaum and
various places in Kolhapur, and importing cloth, date, salt, spices, and
sugar, through the ports of Rajapur and Vengurla in Ratnagiri District.
Weekly market on Thursday, when cotton, yarn, grain, molasses, tobacco,
and from 2000 to 3000 cattle form the chief articles of trade. Weaving
of women's robes, waistcloths, and inferior blankets are the only industries.
Travellers' bungalow, rest-house, post-office, and two Government
schools, one for boys and the other for girls. Paper for packing pur-
poses and for envelopes was manufactured to a large extent before
the famine of 1876-77, but during the famine the paper-makers
deserted the town. Population (1872) 5143; (1881) 5061.



K0NKA1R—K0NKAN. 2 g 9

Konkair. — Town in Nigpur District, Central Provinces. — .&«

Kakair.

Konkan.— A name applied to the Marathf-speaking lowland strip
along the southern portion of the Bombay Presidency, situated between
the Western Ghats and the sea. The term has no very distinct ad-
ministrative signification, and its former geographical limits have be-
come less strictly defined than of old. The coast strip, to which the
word is now applied, is a fertile and generally level tract, varying from
i or 2 to about 50 miles in breadth between the sea and the moun-
tains, with an area of about 12,500 square miles, and, approximately,
a population of 3,800,000. It is watered by hill streams, and at parts
intersected by tidal backwaters, but has nowhere any great rivers. A
luxuriant vegetation of palms rises along the coast, the cocoa-nut
plantations forming an important source of wealth to the villagers.
Splendid forests cover the Ghats on its eastern boundary. The crops
are abundant ; and owing to the monsoon rainfall being precipitated
upon the Ghats behind, the Konkan is peculiarly exempt from drought
and famine. The common language of the Konkan is Marathi.
Kanarese is spoken in the southern part, and a little Gujarathi in the
north of Thana.

In a geographical sense, the Konkan forms one of the five territorial
Divisions of the Bombay Presidency, the others being the Deccan,
the Karnatik, Gujarat, and Sind. It includes the town and island of
Bombay, the three British Districts of Ratnagiri, Kolaba, and Thana,
the three Native States of Jawhar, Janjira, and Sawantwari, and the
Portuguese territory of Goa, all of which see separately.

Area in Population

Square Miles. (Census of 1881).
Ratnagiri District . . . 3,922 997,090



Kolaba ,,

Thana ,,

Bombay City and Island

Jawhar State

Janjira

Sawantwari ,,

Goa Territory .

Total



1,496 38^649

4,243 908,548

22 773,196

534 48,556

325 76,361

900 174,433

1,062 445,449



12,504 3,805,282



The Konkan is bounded by Gujarat on the north, by the Deccan on
the east, by North Kanara District on the south, and by the Arabian
Sea on the west.

The history of the Konkan will best be gathered from a perusal of
the historical portions of the separate articles on the included States
and Districts. The earliest dynasty connected with the Konkan
is that of the Mauryas, who reigned about three centuries before
Christ; but the "evidence of the connection rests altogether on

vol. viii. T



290 KONKAN.

an Asoka inscription discovered at the town of Sopara in Thana Dis-
trict. The dynasties that succeeded were the following, in their order,
so far as order is ascertainable : — The Shatakarnis or Andrabhrityas,
with their capital at Paitan in the Deccan ; the Mauryas, descendants
of the elder house ; the Chalukyas ; the Silaharas, whose capital was
perhaps the island of Elephanta in Bombay Harbour ; the Yadavas,
with their capital at Deogiri, the modern Daulatabad ; the Muhatn-
madans (Khiljis, Bahmanis, Bijapur chiefs, Mughals, and Ahmadabad
kings) ; Portuguese commanders (over a limited area) ; Marathas ; and
British.

The principal incidents in the annals of the Konkan are of modern
interest. The Konkan coast was known to the peoples of Greece
and Rome, and both Ptolemy (150 a.d.) and the author of the Periplus
(247 a.d.) afford evidence that Greek traders from Egypt dealt with
the Konkan ports. Many of these last are named by the Greek
geographers ; and while the modern representative of the ancient
town has been in many instances identified, in others the ingenuity of
conjecture is still employed. To take one or two examples, it is yet a
matter of uncertainty whether Byzantium is the Konkan pirate fort of
Vijayadrug ; whether the word Chersonesus refers to Goa, or whether
the term Heptanesia relates to the islands that stud the modern
harbour of Bombay.

The arrival of the Beni-Israel and the Parsis from the Persian Gulf
and Persia are important incidents in Konkan history. The Beni-Israel,
whom high authority has not hesitated to call the descendants of the
lost tribes of Israel, are found all over Bombay Presidency. The
descendants of the first Parsis, who landed in Thana about the 7th
century, now crowd the streets and markets of Bombay, engross a large
part of the city's wealth and principal trading operations, and have
their agents in all important provincial towns.

The Portuguese reached Malabar in 1498, and fixed the head-quarters
of their naval dominion at Cheul or Chaul. In 15 10, Goa was seized,
and from this time until 1630 the Portuguese shared the rule of the
Konkan with the Muhammadan kings of Ahmadnagar and Bijapur.
The rise and fall of the pirate power of the Angrids, who fixed them-
selves in the island strongholds of Kolaba, Suvarndriig, and Gheria or
Vijayadrug, and from 1700 to 1756 harassed English, Dutch, and native
shipping alike, mark a disastrous period of Konkan history.

Since the British administration was set up in 1818 on the overthrow
of the Marathas, the peace of the whole area, if some disturbances in
Sawantwari in 1844 and 1850 be excepted, has remained unbroken.

The great city and harbour of Bombay are situated about one-third
down the length of the Konkan from the north. The Portuguese terri-
tory of Goa used to form its southern limit ; but the District of North



Online LibraryWilliam Wilson HunterThe imperial gazetteer of India (Volume 8) → online text (page 34 of 64)