KUMAON or KUMAUN is one of the two regions and administrative
Uttarakhand , a mountainous state of northern
It is home to a famous
* 1 Etymology * 2 Geography
* 3 History
* 3.1 Katyuri Raj * 3.2 Chand Raj * 3.3 Raikas Of Doti * 3.4 Nepalese invasion and its defeat * 3.5 British Raj
* 4 Martial race
* 5 Language
* 5.1 Dialects of Kumaoni language * 5.2 Kumaon Vani
* 6 See also * 7 Further reading * 8 References * 9 External links
Kumaon is believed to have been derived from "Kurmanchal", meaning
land of the Kurmavatar (the tortoise incarnation of Lord
During the time of the British control of the region, between 1815 and 1857. It was also known as Kemaon.
The Kumaon region consists of a large Himalayan tract, together with
two submontane strips called the
The rivers like Gori , Dhauli, and Kali rise chiefly in the southern
slope of the Tibetan watershed north of the loftiest peaks, amongst
which they make their way down valleys of rapid declivity and
extraordinary depth. The principal is the Sharda (Kali Ganga), the
Pindari and Kailganga, whose waters join the Alaknanda. The river
Sharda (Kali Ganga) forms the international boundary between
The chief trees are the
In the ancient period between 1300 and 1400 AD, after the disintegration of Katyuri kingdom of Uttarakhand, eastern region of Uttarakhand (Kumaon) was divided into eight different princely states i.e., Baijnath-Katyuri, Dwarhat, Doti , Baramandal, Askot, Sira, Sora, Sui (Kali kumaon). Later on, in 1581 AD after the defeat of Raika Hari Mall (maternal uncle of Rudra Chand) with the hand of Rudra Chand all these disintegrated parts came under King Rudra Chand and the whole region was as Kumaon.
Temples at Kartikeyapura (now Baijnath ), the capital of Katyuri Kings Main article: Katyuri Kings
The Katyuri dynasty was of a branch of Kunindas origin and was
founded by Vashudev Katyuri. Originally from Joshimath, during their
reign they dominated lands of varying extent from the 'Katyur' (modern
day Baijnath) valley in Kumaon, between 7th and 11th centuries AD, and
established their capital at Baijnath in
Bageshwar district, which was
then known as Kartikeyapura and lies in the centre of 'Katyur' valley.
Brahmadev mandi in Kanchanpur District of
At their peak, the Katyuri kingdom extended from
The Rajbar dynasty of Askot in Pithoragarh, was set up in 1279 AD, by a branch of the Katyuri Kings, headed by Abhay Pal Deo, who was the grandson of Katyuri king, Brahma Deo . The dynasty ruled the region till it became part of the British Raj through the treaty of Sighauli in 1816.
The Chand kingdom was established by Som Chand, who came here from Kannuaj near Allahabad, sometime in the 10th century, and displaced the Katyuri Kings (कत्यूरी नरेश), originally from Katyur valley near Joshimath, who had been ruling the area from the 7th century AD. He continued to call his state Kurmanchal and established its capital in Champawat in Kali Kumaon called so, due to its vicinity to river Kali. Many temples built in this former capital city, during the 11th and 12th century exist today, this includes the Baleshwar and Nagnath temples.
They had brief skirmishes with the Rajput clans in Gangoli and Bankot then predominant there, the Mankotis of Mankot, the Pathanis of Attigaon-Kamsyar, Kalakotis and many other Khas Rajput Clans of the region. However they were able to establish their domain there. Baj Bahadur of Kumaon ca. 1750.
One of most powerful rulers of Chand dynasty was Baz Bahadur
(1638–78) AD, who met Shahjahan in Delhi, and in 1655 joined forces
with him to attack Garhwal, which was then under the King Pirthi Sah.
Baz Bahadur subsequently captured the
Towards the end of the 17th century, Chand kings again attacked the Garhwal kingdom, and in 1688, Udyot Chand erected several temples at Almora, including Tripur Sundari, Udyot Chandeshwar, and Parbateshwar. To mark his victory over Garhwal and Doti, the Parbateshwar temple was renamed twice, to become the present Nanda Devi temple. Later, Jagat Chand (1708–20), defeated the Raja of Garhwal and pushed him away from Srinagar (in Uttarakhand, not to be confused with the capital of present-day Indian Kashmir), and his kingdom was given to a Brahmin. However, a subsequent king of Garhwal, Pradip Shah (1717–72), regained control over Garhwal and retained Dehra Dun till 1757, when Rohilla leader, Najib-ul-Daula, established himself there, though he was ousted soon by Pradip Shah.
RAIKAS OF DOTI
Niranjan Malldeo was the founder of
Doti Kingdom around the 13th
century after a fall of Katyuris Kingdom. He was the son of Last
Katyuris of united Katyuris kingdom. Kings of
Doti were known as
Raikas. Later on Raikas, after overthrow
Khas Malla of Karnali Zone,
were able to form a strong Raikas Kingdom in Far Western Region and
Kumaon which was called Doti. So far, the historical evidence of
following Raikas have been discovered; Niranjan Malldev (Founder of
Doti Kingdom), Nagi Malla (1238 AD), Ripu Malla (1279 AD), Nirai Pal
(1353 AD may be of
Askot and his historical evidence of 1354 A.D has
been found in Almoda), Nag Malla (1384 AD), Dhir Malla (1400 AD), Ripu
Malla (1410 AD), Anand Malla (1430 AD), Balinarayan Malla (not known),
Sansar Malla (1442 AD), Kalyan Malla (1443 AD), Suratan Malla (1478
AD), Kriti Malla(1482 AD), Prithivi Malla (1488 AD), Medini Jay Malla
(1512 AD), Ashok Malla (1517 AD), Raj Malla (1539 AD), Arjun
Malla/Shahi (not known but he was ruling Sira as Malla and
Shahi), Bhupati Malla/Shahi (1558 AD), Sagaram Shahi (1567 AD), Hari
Malla/Shahi (1581 AD Last Raikas King of Sira and adjoining part of
In the early 19th century, the region was ruled by the Nepalese
Gorkha Kingdom . The people of Kumaon requested the British many times
to help them overthrow Nepalese rule. According to folklore , when a
British official was saved from the prison of the Tibetan Joongpong
The Gorkhas were defeated and the way for the liberation of Garhwal from the oppressive Gorkha rule was open. The British realised through this war the potential of military expertise of these hillmen. Inspired by their bravery, the British granted on the people of Kumaon the title of martial race. They recruited heavily from them, and the result was the Kumaon Regiment (earlier the Hyderabad Regiment which consisted mostly of Kumaonis).
Later, the region was annexed by the British . In 1815 the Kumaon region was joined with the eastern half of the Garhwal region as a chief-commissionership on the non-regulation system , also known as the Kumaon Province . It was governed for seventy years by three administrators, Mr. Traill, Mr. J. H. Batten and Sir Henry Ramsay.
There was widespread opposition against British rule in various parts of Kumaon. The Kumaoni people especially Champawat District rose in rebellion against the British during the Indian Rebellion of 1857 under the leadership of the members like Kalu Singh Mahara .
In 1891 the division was composed of the three districts of Kumaon,
Garhwal and the
Gandhiji's advent sounded a death knell for the British in Kumaon. People now aware of the excesses of British Raj became defiant of it and played an active part in the Indian Struggle for Independence.
Gandhiji was revered in these parts and on his call the struggle of SALAM SALIYA SATYAGRAHA led by Ram Singh Dhoni was started which shook the very roots of British rule in Kumaon. Many people lost their lives in the Saalam Satyagraha due to police brutality. Gandhiji named it the Bardoli of Kumaon an allusion to the Bardoli Satyagrah
Many Kumaonis also joined the Indian National Army led by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose .
An Indian soldier from 6th Battalion of the 6th Kumaon Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, 2015
Kumaonis have been famous for their valour, their courage was
legendary, their honour indomitable. The Kumaonis were never fully
subjugated by the powerful Muslim dynasties of Delhi . Kumaonis were
observed by the British, their valour was thus given recognition by
the British and was included in the British Army. It is interesting to
note that the 3rd Gorkha Rifles was known as the Keemaon battalion
when it was formed and it included Kumaonis as well as the Garhwalis
along with the Gorkhas. The Kumaonis, once accepted as a martial race
, were themselves to be recruited in the Hyderabad regiment and
displace the native troops, ultimately becoming the Kumaon Regiment
after Independence of India. The
Kumaon Regiment is one of the most
decorated regiments of the Indian Army. The regiment traces its
origins with the British
Main article: Kumaoni language
Their Kumaoni language forms the Central subgroup of the Pahari languages.
Kumaoni is one of the 325 recognized Indian languages, and is spoken by over 2,360,000 (1998) people in Uttarakhand , primarily in districts Almora, Nainital, Pithoragarh, Bageshwar, Champawat, Udham Singh Nagar as well as in areas of Himachal Pradesh and Nepal. It is also spoken by Kumaonis resident in other Indian states; Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Delhi and Madhya Pradesh.
UNESCO’s Atlas of the World\'s Languages in Danger designates Kumaoni as language in the "unsafe" category and which requires consistent conservation efforts.
DIALECTS OF KUMAONI LANGUAGE
Although dialects of Kumaoni do not vary as greatly as neighboring Garhwali dialects, there are several dialects spoken in the Kumaon region. There is not single accepted method of dividing up the dialects of Kumaoni. Broadly speaking, Kali (or Central) Kumaoni is spoken in Almora and northern Nainital. North-eastern Kumaoni is spoken in Pithoragarh. South-eastern Kumapni is spoken in South-eastern Nainital. Western Kumaoni is spoken west of Almora and Nainital.
* Johari of the
* Askoti of
* Bhabhri of Ramnagar
* Chaugarkhiyali of Chaugarkha
* Danpuriya of Danpur
* Gangoli of Ganai-Gangoli (
* Johari of Malla and Talla Johar
* Khasparjiya of
* Kumaiya of
* Pachhai of Pali-Pachhau (
Scholars blelieve that Kumaoni has heavily influenced the Palpa language of Nepal. There are also several unrelated Tibeto-Burman languages spoken in the Kumaon region which have had some influence from Kumaoni.
* Rang or Rung * Darmyali * Bangbani
These languages are typically spoken in Upper Reaches of Kumaon Himalayas.
With the aim to create a common platform for local communities of Supi in Uttarakhand , TERI launched 'Kumaon vani', a community radio service on 11 March 2010. Uttarakhand Governor Margaret Alva inaugurated the community radio station, the first in the state. The 'Kumaon Vani' aims to air programmes on environment, agriculture, culture, weather and education in the local language and with the active participation of the communities. The radio station covers a radius of 10 km reaching out to almost 2000 locals around Mukhteshwar
* Upreti, Ganga Dutt (1894). Proverbs & folklore of Kumaon and Garhwal. Lodiana Mission Press. * Oakley, E Sherman (1905). Holy Himalaya; the religion, traditions, and scenery of Himalayan province (Kumaon and Garwhal). Oliphant Anderson & Ferrier, London. * Raja Rudradeva of Kumaon (1910). Haraprasada Shastri, ed. Syanika sastra: or A Book on Hawking. Asiatic Society, Calcutta.
* ^ Kumaon Information
* ^ James Prinsep (Editor)Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal,
Volume 6, Part 2 (1837), p. 653, at
* A New History of Uttrakhand by Dr. Y.S. Kathoch * This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain : Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "article name needed". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
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