A city of many dimensions is what befits a description of Prayagraj . In addition to being a major pilgrimage centre, the city has played an important part in the formation of modern India. Hindu mythology states that Lord Brahma, the creator of universe chose it to conduct 'Prakrishta Yajna'. This land is known for the sangam of three holy rivers - Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati,. Land is believed to be blessed by gods and came to be known as 'Prayag' or 'Prayagraj '.
Foreseeing the sanctity of the place, Lord Brahma also called it as 'Tirth Raj' or 'King of all pilgrimage centers.' The Scriptures - Vedas and the great epics - Ramayana and Mahabharata refer to this place as Prayag.
Prayagraj became the headquarters of North Western Provinces after being shifted from Agra. Well preserved relics of the British impact include the Muir College and the All Saints Cathedral.
Many important events in India's struggle for freedom took place here - the emergence of the first Indian National Congress in 1885, the beginning of Mahatma Gandhi's non-violence movement in 1920.
History of Prayagraj
The city of Prayagraj is among the largest cities of Uttar Pradesh and is situated at the confluence of three rivers- Ganga, Yamuna and the invisible Saraswati. The meeting point is known as Triveni and is especially sacred to Hindus. The earlier settlements of the Aryans were established in this city, then known as Prayag” Prayagasya Praveshshu Papam Nashwati Tatkshanam. It is believed to clear all the sins with a holy dip in Prayag ( the ancient name of modern time Prayagraj ) PRAYAG is one of the historic and mythological cities of India with glorious past and present. It continues to enjoy the distinction of being a place of haunting and lasting memories. It is a city of mixed culture of Hindu, Muslims, Jains and Christians.
Its sanctity is manifested by references of it in Purans, Ramayan and Mahabharata. As per writing of ‘Padam Puran’ – "As the sun is amongst the moon and the moon amongst the stars, likewise ‘Prayag is best amongst all places of pilgrimage” The bathing at Prayag is mentioned in Brahma Puran s " in the month of Magha at the bank of Ganga Yamuna in Prayag bestows results of millions and millions of Ashvmedha Yajna
Prayag is birth place of Som, Varuna and Prjapati. Prayag has been associated with mythological personalities in Brahmanical (Vedic) and Buddhist Literatures. It was the seat of the great Sage Bhardwaj, sage Durvasa and Sage Pannas. Sage Bharadwaj lived here circa 5000BC and taught more than 10,000 disciples. He was the greatest philosopher of ancient world.
The Present Jhunsi area very close to sangam was the kingdom of Chandrabanshiya ( lunar clan ) king Pururava. Nearby Kaushambi bloomed to prosperity during Vatsa and Maurya Rule. The earliest monument of antiques Ashok Pillar with inscriptions of third century B.C. clears the inscriptions of his directions to his fellow Rajas and praise of King Samudragupta. The Chinese traveler Huan Tsang in 643 BC found Prayag inhabited by many Hindus who regarded the place very holy.
In 1575 AD, Emperor Akbar impressed with the strategic importance of the SANGAM founded the city by the name of " ILLAHABAS” which means " The City of Allaha” In medieval India the city enjoyed the honor of being the religio-cultural center of India. For a long time it was Provincial capital of the Mughals. Later it was captured by Marathas. Few events which city has witnessed are enumerated
1801 AD, Nawab of Oudh ceded the city to the British throne. British army used it for their military purposes.
1857 AD The town was the centre of war of Independence and later became the crucible of Indian Freedom Movement against British.
1858 AD The East India Company officially handed over India to British Government here at Minto Park. After the first war of independence the town was named "Prayagraj ” and was made the capital of United Province of Agra and Oudh.
1868 AD City become a seat of Justice when Allah bad High Court was established.
1871 AD British architect Sir William Emerson erected a majestic monument All Saint Cathedral. He is the architect of famous Victoria Memorial of Kolkata .
1887 AD Prayagraj became the fourth oldest University. Prayagraj has been rich in numerous Victorian and Georgian buildings made in synthesis with Indian architectural traditions.
This city was the heart of the Indian Freedom Movement against the British rule with Anand Bhawan being the epicenter. It was in Prayagraj that Mahatama Gandhi proposed his program of non-violent resistance to liberate India. Prayagraj has provided the largest number of prime ministers post independence like Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru, Lal Bahadur Shastri, Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, V.P.Singh and Chandra Shekhar. Former Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar was student of Prayagraj University.
Prayagraj is basically an Administrative and Educational city. High Court of Uttar Pradesh, Auditor General of Uttar Pradesh, Principal Controller of Defense Accounts ( Pension ) PCDA, Uttar Pradesh Madhymik Shiksha Prishad ( UP BOARD ) office, Police Headquarters and in education Moti Lal Nehru Regional Engg. College MNREC, Medical and Agriculture College , Indian Institute of Information Technology ( IIIT ) ITI Naini and IIFCO Phulpur , Triveni Glass are some of major industries here.
From the days of civilization Prayagraj has been seat of learning, wisdom and writing. It is the most vibrant politically, spiritually conscious and spiritually awakened city of India.
Prayagraj at a Glance
Area : 54.83 Sq. km.
Population : 59,59,798 (2001 census)
Altitude : 98 meters above sea level.
Season : November-February
Clothing (Summer) : Cottons
Clothing (Winter) : Woolens
Language : Hindi, Urdu , English
Festivals : Magh Mela, Kumbh Mela, Ardh Kumbh Mela, Dussehra,Ganga water Raily (water Sports),Triveni Mahotsava etc.
Local Transport : Buses, Taxis, Auto-Rickshaws.
STD Code : 0532
Geography of Prayagraj
Prayagraj is located at 25.45°N 81.84°E in the southern part of the Uttar Pradesh at an elevation of 98 meters (322 ft) and stands at the confluence of two rivers,the Ganges and Yamuna. The region was known in antiquity as the Vats country. To its south and southeast is the Bagelkhand region, too its east is middle Ganges valley of North India or Purvanchal, to its southwest is the Bundelkhand region, to its north and northeast is the Awadh region and to its west along with Kaushambi it forms the part of Doab i.e the Lower Doab region.
In the North district Pratapgarh, Rewa (M.P) is in the south Rewa (M.P.), Sant Ravi Das Nagar in the east and Kaushambhi districts are located.
Bamrauli Airport is 14 Km from Prayagraj .
Regular Flights from Prayagraj to Delhi
Monday to Saturday at 1:20 PM (Prayagraj to Delhi)
Prayagraj is well connected by trains with all major cities, viz. Calcutta, Delhi, Jaipur, Lucknow and Mumbai. Some of the important trains providing access to Prayagraj are:
- 1093/1094 Mahanagari Exp. (VNS-Mub)
- 2559/2560 Shivganga Express (New Delhi-Varanasi)
- 2427/2428 Reeva Express (New Delhi-Reeva)
- 2403/2404 Mathura Express (Prayagraj -Agra-Mathura
- 2311/2312 Kalka Mail (Kalka/Delhi-Howrah)
- 2381/2382 & 2303/2304 Air Conditioned Express (Amritsar-Delhi-Howrah);
- 2815/2816 New Delhi-Puri Express;
- 3007/3008 Udyan Abha Toofan Express (Shriganganagar/Delhi-Howrah);
- 3011/3012 Howrah Express (Howrah-Delhi);
- 2321/2522 North East Express (New Delhi-Guwahati);
- 2391-2392 Magadh Vikramshila Express (New Delhi-Patna);
- 2417/2418 Prayag Raj Express (New Delhi)
- 1071/1072 Kamayni Exp. (VNS-Mub)
- 2275/2276 Prayagraj /New Delhi Duranto Exp.
Prayagraj , on National Highways 2, 27 and 24 B, is connected to all parts of the country by good roads. Some important road distances are:
- Agra (433 km),
- Ahmedabad (1207 km),
- Ayodhya (167 km),
- Bhopal (680 km),
- Kolkata (799 km)
- Chennai (1790 km)
- Chitrakoot (125 km)
- New Delhi (643 km)
- Hyderabad (1086 km)
- Jaipur (673 km)
- Jhansi (375 km)
- Khajuraho (294 km)
- Mumbai (1444 km)
- Lucknow (204 km)
- Nagpur (618 km)
- Patna (368 km)
- Trivandrum (2413 km)
- Udaipur (956 km)
- Varanasi (125 km)
- Kanpur (205 km)