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Thursday, 23 May 2013

History Surat ( Guajrat )

Chaurasi  Samaj Kadva Patidar 
History Surat ( Guajrat )

Surat


Surat
History of Surat, developed on the banks of River Tapi, a daughter of the Sun, is very splendid. Attracted by the prosperity of Surat, in around 1600 A. D., Surat city was plundered twice by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. As flags of Choryasi port were waving in Surat city, it was named Choryasi. Thus, Surat was an important port in the past. Valandas had established their central office also in Surat city. The British established the first trade office, first time in India in Surat in 1612 A. D. and obtained rights of trading for East India Company in 1614.

On studying in detail regarding the history of Surat, it is revealed that distinct references of Surat are found since the beginning of the fifteenth century only. Before that the land area of Surat district passed thought historical experiences of centuries. Many dynasties ruled over the region. By the hundreds of Copper Plates found reveal that tradition of Sect / Religion was already established. Surat had become the main attraction of habitation for the traders - exporters of the whole world.

The tradition is seen by the two names of the city viz. Surat and Suryapur since the historical reference of Surat city is found. The use of the word Suryapur is firstly found in the metal inscription of Jain idols. The Mention of the name Surat is found since the middle part of the Fifteenth Century. Moreover, the idiom Surat is found constantly used in the Jain literature works and Persian history books. During the earlier part of the Fifteenth Century, under the Muslim Empire, the word Surat was established for this town / port.

About the dwelling of Surat, Muslim historians note that Qutbuddin Aybak in 1194 A. D. and Mohammad Tughlaq in 1347 A. D. visited Surat. Sultan Firoz Tughlaq constructed a small fort for the protection of Surat and Zafar Khan, the Governor of Gujarat, appointed his son Masti Khan as governor of Rander and Surat in 1391. The original Surat was limited to the areas of Dariya Mahel, Shahpore, Nanavat, Sodagarwad, etc. But, a rich noble man named Malik Gopi expanded it by inhabiting Gopipura and by constructing Gopi Talav. He constructed Rani Talav in the memory of his wife, after that he was appointed as Governor of Surat. However, he was killed as he became the victim of the displeasure of the Sultan of Gujarat around 1515.
In the beginning of the Sixteenth Century, Portuguese took over the possession of Surat port. They robbed the city and destroyed the splendour. To save from the attacks of the Portuguese, Khwaja Safar Salmani, the Governor of Surat, constructed a new, strong, high and large fort in the place of the small old fort in 1540 A. D., which is existing near the Hope Bridge of Tapi river even today. Mughal Emperor Akbar himself came here to conquer Surat and after the siege of one and a half months he took possession of Surat fort in February 1573 after one and half months of siege, in February – 1573, he took the possession over the fort of Surat.

During the Mughal era, there was a great increase in population, area, trade relations and prosperity of Surat. It became the chief international port of Western India. Ships going to Mecca were starting from Surat only. Today that place is known as Makkai Pul. The British founded their first Central Office in Surat in 1613 A. D. After that, the Dutch, the French and the Armenians also came. Their graveyards are near Katargam Gate. A grand and large Muslim Caravanserai was built for the convenience of the Muslims going to and coming from Mecca in 1644, which is now used as main office of the Surat Municipal Corporation and its surrounding area is know as Mugalisara.

There were multi millionaires like Virji Vora, Krishna Arjun Travadi, Atmaram Bhukhan, etc. during Mughal era in Surat. Surat port was used for going to Mecca. Many ships of various countries were coming here for trading so it was said that flags of Choryasi port were waving here. There was a mint opposite Kurja, where golden and silver coins were minted. In the period of Aurangzeb, Surat was given to his sister Jahan Ara as a reward ( Jagir ). The area where she was living is today known as Begumwadi and Begumpura.

The prosperity and splendour of Surat of the Mughal era declined during the Maratha period. The formal power of Marathas was not established on Surat, but Shivaji plundered it in 1644 and in 1678, twice to collect ‘Choth’ ( one-fourth of revenue paid as tribute ). The British shifted their head quarter to Mumbai from Surat on finding Surat insecure. Then after, Mumbai was developed. Many merchants from Surat also shifted to Mumbai.
After the establishment of the British rule, physical facilities and reforms were introduced in Surat and modern institution was established. Andrus library in 1850 A. D. and Surat City Municipality in 1852 A. D. were founded. Surat was connected with railway in 1864 and Hope Bridge was constructed in 1877. As the time passed Roads, Electricity, Telegraph – Post, School – Colleges, etc. were built. During the time, some huge fire and flood resulted in a terrible loss to Surat. Many houses of the central part of Surat were destructed by a huge fire in 1837.

Surat has registered a great contribution in the Independence Movement. Six representatives from Surat participated in the first session of Congress in 1855. All the national leaders came to Surat when the historic session of Congress was organized in the area near Diwalibaug near Athwa Gate at Surat. Gandhiji and Sardar Vallabhbhai visited Surat many times. Patidar Ashram and Dayalji Ashram were two main centres of independence movement of Surat.

The social reforms in Gujarat were initiated from Surat. Durgaram Mehtaji, Narmada Shankar, etc. gave important contribution. Surat has given great literatures like Nand Shankar, Narmada Sharkar, Navalram, Mahipatram Nikanth, Ramanbhai Nilkanth, Jyotindra Dave, C. C. Mehta. Surat has greatly contributed in the areas of Education, Arts, Music, Industry, Trade and Religion. Art, Silk and Jari , Diamond industries have developed. International Companies have started projects in Hajira area. Looking to the existing development of Surat, it is felt that Surat is like preparing to once again become Golden Idol. 




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