buldana

Buldhana District has an area of 9,680 km² and is located in Amravati Division of Maharashtra, located in central India. It is around 500 km from the state capital, Mumbai.

The world largest hypervelocity meteorite impact crater in basaltic rock, the Lonar crater, is located in Buldhana district.

The district is bounded on the north by Madhya Pradesh state, to the east by Akola and Washim districts, to the south by Parbhani and Jalna districts, and to the west by Jalna and Jalgaon districts.

The district is the western most district of Vidarbha.

Origin of name
It is also spelled as Buldana earlier.

History
It is believed that Buldhana, along with the rest of the erstwhile Berar province, was part of the legendary kingdom of Vidarbha mentioned in the Mahabharata. Berar also formed part of the Mauryan Empire during the reign of Asoka (272 to 231 BCE). Berar later came under the rule of the Satavahana dynasty (2nd century BCE-2nd century CE), the Vakataka dynasty (3rd to 6th centuries), the Chalukya dynasty (6th to 8th centuries), the Rashtrakuta dynasty (8th to 10th centuries), the Chalukyas again (10th to 12th centuries), and finally the Yadava dynasty of Devagiri (late 12th to early 14th centuries. A period of Muslim rule began when Ala ud din Khilji, Sultan of Delhi, conquered the region in the early 14th century. The region was part of the Bahmani Sultanate, which broke away from the Delhi Sultanate in the mid-14th century. The Bahmani Sultanate broke up into smaller sultanates at the end of the 15th century, and in 1572 Berar became part of the Nizam Shahi sultanate, based at Ahmednagar. The Nizam Shahis ceded Berar to the Mughal Empire in 1595. As Mughal rule started to unravel at the start of the 18th century, Asaf Jah I, Nizam of Hyderabad siezed the southern provinces of the empire (including Berar) in 1724, forming an independent state.

Mother of Chhatrapati Shivaji, Veer Mata Jijabai was born at Sindkhedraja, at the Palace of Lakhuji Jadhav.

In 1853, the district together with the rest of Berar came under the administration of the British East India Company. Berar was divided into East and West Berar with Buldhana district being included in West Berar. In 1903, Berar was leased by the Nizam of Hyderabad to the British Government of India.

Buldhana district forms the west part of Amravati division now.

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Geography

* Lonar craterThe world heritage site of Lonar crater is located in Buldhana district.
* The d boundary latitude are: 19.51° to 21.17° N and longitude are: 75.57° to 76.59° E
* The climate is tropical and people mostly use cotton clothes.
* The district lies in the Tapti River and Godavari River basins. Purna River is tributary of Tapti River while Penganga River and Kadakpurna River are tributaries of Godavari River.

Here are some of the rivers in Buldhana, with their tributaries

* Purna River
* Vaan River
* Mann River
* Utawali River
* Nipani River
* Mas River
* Bordi River
* Dynanganga River
* Vishwaganga River
* Nalganga River
* Penganga River
* Kadakpurna River

The district of Buldhana comprise of thirteen talukas namely Malkapur, Motala, Buldhana, Chikhali, Mehkar, Sindkhedraja, Lonar, Deoulgaonraja, Khamgaon, Nandura, Shegaon, Sangrampur, and Jalgaon-Jamod.

Buldhana district is located in the central portion of the state of Maharashtra. Akola, Jalgaon, Jalna, Parbhani are the adjoining districts to the east, west & south respectively. Nemad district of the M.P. is to the north & lies between 19°51′ to 21°17′ North latitude and 75°57′ to 76°49′ East Longitude.

Buldhana (Buldana) is a city in the state of Maharashtra, India. It is the headquarters of Buldhana District. It is located on the top of a mountain in Ajanta ranges, in central India and is about 900 m above sea level.

Buldana (Buldhana) is located in the state of Maharashtra in India.
Taluka: Buldhana
District: Buldhana
STD Code: 07262 (India country code: 91)
Nearest Railway Station: Malkapur (45 Km.)
Languages: Marathi, Hindi
Major Crop: Cotton

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Lonar SanctuaryPlaces of interest

* Lonar, place of Lonar Crater, Lonar Lake and Lonar Sanctuary; around 90 km to the south.
* Ajanta caves, 50 km away from the city.
* Sindkhedraja, birth place of Veer Mata Jijabai, mother of Chhatrapati Shivaji and Palace of Lakhuji Jadhav, around 100 km
* Shegaon, also known as Pandharpur of Vidarbha, home to the Sant Gajanan Maharaj, around 90 km
* Mehkar, the famous Balaji Temple.
* Deoulgaonraja, the famous Balaji Temple.
* Chikali, the Durgah of Sailani Baba
* Dnyanganga Sanctuary
* Ambabarva Sanctuary
* Nandura, for the world’s biggest Hanuman idol.

Transport And Travel

The various railway stations with their codes are Malkapur (MKU), Vadoda, Chandur, Nandura (NN), Jalamb Junction (JM), Khamgaon (KMN), Shegaon (SEG), and Nagzari and are under Bhusawal-Badnera Section of Bhusawal Division of Central Railway.

National Highway 6 NH6 passes through Khamgaon, Nandura, and Malkapur towns in the district. The other major road is State Highway passing through Shegaon, Khamgaon, Chikhali, and Deulgaonraja. Vehicles from Nagpur, Amravati and Akola pass through Khamgaon-Chikhali-Deulgaonraja while going towards Jalna-Aurangabad and Pune.

There are many Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation’s bus stands at all towns of the districts. The major one is Buldhana, Malkapur, Chikhali, Khamgaon, Shegaon and Nandura. There are State Transport bus depots at Buldhana, Malkapur, Chikhali, Mehkar, Khamgaon, Shegaon and Jalgaon-Jamod.

The important roads in the district are ·

* National Highway 6 – Balapur Akola – Kolori – Khamgaon – Aamsari – Nandura – Wadner – Malkapur – Dharangaon – Muktainagar (earlier Edalabad) Jalgaon
* State Highway 176 Chikhali – Mehkar – Malegaon ( Washim )
* State Highway 183 Buldhana – Chikhali – Sindhkedraja
* State Highway 000 Deoulgaonraja – Chikhali -Amdapur – Khamgaon – Shegaon – Akot ( Akola )
* Sindkhedraja – Bibi – Lonar
* Shegaon – Manasgaon – Warwat – Bawanbir – Wasali – Ambabarva
* Buldhana – Rohana – Khamgaon
* Buldhana – Motala – Malkapur – Darangaon -Edalabad Jalgaon
* Motala – Nandura – Jalgaon-Jamod- Sangrampur – Warwat – Telhara ( Akola )
* Bawanbir – Sonala – Hiwarkhed ( Akola )
* Bibi – Mehkar – Janephal – Amdapur

Motor buses, jeeps are the popular mode of transport.
The nearest airport for the district is Aurangabad, which is around 150 km.

Lonar crater
Lonar CraterLonar is situated around 550 km from Mumbai, around 160 km from Aurangabad and around 140 km via Buldhana with about 4 1/2 hours drive southeast of the famous Ajanta Caves.

The nearest railway station is Malkapur, on the Mumbai – Bhusawal -Nagpur route of Central Railways of Indian Rail around 100 km from Lonar.

Lonar crater in the Buldhana district of Maharashtra state, India is the largest crater in basaltic rock. It is partially filled by a salt-water lake.

It is 6,000 ft (1.83 km) in diameter and 170 metres in depth, and its age is estimated to be 52,000 ± 6,000 years. (Pleistocene)

Lonar crater is situated around 550 km from Mumbai, 160 km from Aurangabad and 140 km from Buldhana at 19.975° N 76.51° E. It is about 4 1/2 hours drive southeast of the famous Ajanta Caves. The nearest railway station is Jalna on Manmad-Nanded Section of SC Railway.

Although once thought to be of volcanic origin, Lonar Crater is now recognized as an impact crater created by the hypervelocity impact of either a comet or meteorite. The impact origin of this crater is clearly demonstrated by the presence of plagioclase that has been either converted into maskelynite or contains planar deformation features (PDFs). Only shock metamo

rphism caused by a hypervelocity impact could either have transformed plagioclase into maskelynite or created PDFs in it. The impact origin of Lonar Crater is further substantiated by the presence of shatter cones; impact deformation of basalt layers comprising its rim; shocked breccia inside the crater; and a nonvolcanic ejecta blanket surrounding the crater.

It has history that dates back more than 50000 years, carved out when a meteor struck it. Lonar Lake, near Lonar village in the Buldhana District, is not just he source of Excitement for the visitors but also for the scientist community.

Lonar is the third natural salt-water lake in the world, with a diameter of 1800 meter. It comes after Bosmatvi Lake in Ghana, which has a diameter of 10000 meter and New Cubec in Canada with a Dai of 3500 meter.

According to scientists, about 50000 year back a massive meteor entered into the Earth’s gravitational forces range. 60 meter long and weighing 20 lac ton it was racing at a speed of 25 kms per second towards the planet.

When it struck the earth the energy released was equivalent to that released by six-megaton atom bombs. The impact was so severe that rocks from all sides came o the surface and reached the height of 20 meters.

The impact was so severe that it left a massive crater 170-meter deep and with 1800 meter in diameter. Today it is natural salt-water lake.

The lake was first brought to notice in 1823 by British officer C J E Alexander. In 1896, American geologist G K Gilbert conducted studies to prove that Lonar was created due to meteor strike.

Lonar CraterAn extensive study conducted on the spot under the leadership of Prof. K Fredrikson by officials of Geological Survey of India, United States Geological survey and other institutions, proved using Cosmic Ray-dating that the lake was created by a meteor hit 50000 years ago.

The official dug up the heart of the lake and conducted experiments on the material gathered from there, before making their announcement public. The scientists also found some mineral found mostly in meteor hit areas. Traces of Sodium Carbonate and magnetic properties were also observed in the soil there.

Apart form its scientific importance, Lonar also occupies a place of prominence in our ancient scripts. It finds mention in “Aaina-E-Akbari” During the days of Emperor Akbar, a salt factory was located here.

According to Sanskrit Literature, Lonar was called “Viraj Kshetra” in ancient times. It finds mention in “Viraj Mahatmya” a chapter in “Skanda Puran and Padma Puran” Sanskrit works.

According to Lonar Mahatmya in ancient times, Kashyap Rishi had many sons. One of whom was believed to be staying in the vicinity of Lonar Lake. When Lavanasur terrorized the people and rulers of the region, the son of Rishi Kashyap had prayed to Lord Vishnu to kill Lavanasur.

In the 13th Century, a temple of Lord Vishnu as constructed there during the Chalukya Raj. The temple still exists and is 150mt long and 450 mt. wide. IT is a fine example of the quality of architecture practiced and perfected during that era.

Near the Lonar Lake is the Paphareshwar pilgrimage. The engravings on the temple located there are in Sanskrit and sadly they have still not been deciphered.

To add to its natural beauty the Lake has enough faunas in its surroundings making it a serene and scenic spot.

The Lonar crater and lake form not only a spectacular sight but over the centuries they have evolved an ecosystem that is not replicated anywhere else in the state. The surface diameter of the crater is 1.80 kms while the crater itself is nearly 132 meters deep. The waters are unique, shifting combination of azure and turquoise and parrot green when seen from the viewpoint.

Lonar Devi TempleGoing down into the crater from the surface is an energetic business as there is no handrails or elevators. There is a local belief that the crater itself is the body of the genius loci, the goddess Lonar Devi and she does not take kindly to construction on her sides. All previous attempts at making a sturdier staircase have been washed away in the rains, and given the intensity of local feeling about it, the authorities have been content with the traditional carved rock path. This is quite steep and is much more difficult to go down than climb up, but the danger is more in overactive imaginations than in anything else.

Once down, almost the first sight that greets you is a ruined temple set into a dense forest. This was supposed to be a Rama temple but only the basic structure in stone is left now. There are many temples set round the edge of the lake, all of them constructed in the 12th-13th century in stone but the condition of all of them is not encouraging. What is amazing is the fact that people transported the stone down that steep face and then began to carve and build exactly as they were doing upon the surface at the time. It is an astonishing testament to the energy that would flame forth whenever the cause was a spiritual one. The Vishnu temple and Devi temple are in better condition than the rest but unless you are very determined you will find a full circuit around the lake a tiring business. It can easily take up to three hours, and the temples are scattered all around the rim. It is best to make an early descent, as climbing back up under the midday sun is not the best option. Fortunately, the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation has built a tourist complex where all facilities are available. The sensible option is to drive down from Aurangabad the previous evening and make the descent bright and early the next day. That would give you adequate time to see all the temples, observe the detailed carving and architectural styles, as well as fully soak in the forest atmosphere of the crater.

For, the crater is host to many species of aquatic birds like flamingos, moorhen, coots, and dabchick and so on. Peacocks are to be seen making spectacular glides from tree to tree. Unlike the rest of the country they do not even need to forage upon the ground; so plentiful is the insect and small prey population in the vegetation. The trees grow to be rather tall and they form a canopy that filters out most of the heat. It does tend to get a bit muggy with the unusual levels of humidity. You can even see dung beetles the size of your palm busily rolling their balls, right in your path. There is no danger of snakes but geckos abound. One feature that has a potential to be a nuisance is the monkey population. They are immensely territorial and throw fruits and twigs at your heads if you have ventured near the trees they stake out. If this is close to running water, as the crater has many little streams with cold water, they become agitated and one monkey actually peed upon me. This was a pretty remarkable achievement as it was up a tree branch at least 50-60 feet off the ground. It is also not a good idea to openly display food, as they will learn soon enough that tourists are easy prey.

TempleBut, the crater is not the only spot worth seeing in Lonar. A piece of the meteorite had broken off and smashed into the ground about a kilometer away, forming the Ambar Lake. It is a pleasant enough spot but entry is regulated by odd timings so just a look will suffice. Oddly enough the water in this lake is nothing like the main crater. Close by to the Ambar Lake is a nondescript little temple dedicated to Hanuman, the Hindu god of strength and intelligence. What is interesting is that the image of the god is an actual piece of the crater and for long its magnetic properties had fascinated the people who built a temple to house it. The god is supposed to be recumbent, resting after his mighty labors, well known in Indian myth. The meteorite chunk is brightly painted in the orange color that is preferred in this part of the world. The temple itself is a quiet, quaint little spot but it has to be reached through a bedlam of a market place. Once you break through, the landscape is the most flat and open space you will encounter for a while and the temple is set in the middle of this nowhere.
The temple is open all day and there is no fuss about taking photographs. It is also mostly deserted all day, which makes it an unlikely area of silence in India. There is a well adjacent to the temple, but the cool water is of dicey quality, so do not let thirst overcome discretion.

Where to Stay:

MTDC Holiday Resort comprises self-contained rooms and dormitory with a restaurant.

Getting there:

* Nearest airport is Aurangabad, 122 kms.
* Nearest railhead is Malkapur on the Mumbai-Bhusawal line.
* Mumbai-Aurangabad-Jalan-Lonar, 600 kms. Lonar-Buldhana, 95 kms. Lonar-Mehakar Taluka, 23kms. Lonar-Aurangabad, 145 kms.
* From Nagpur, it is 388 kms by Nagpur – Washim – Lonar route. From Aurangabad, it is 170 kms by Aurangabad – Jalna – Sindkhed Raja – Sultanpur – Lonar Crater.

Accommodation:
Govt. Rest House (2 suites).

Reservation:
Aurangabad, Pune, Amravati and MTDC Mumbai.

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