The District of Cachar is located in the Southernmost part of Assam is one of the oldest district of Assam. It is bounded on the North by Barali and Jayantia hill ranges, on the South by the State Mizoram, on the East by sister district Hailakandi and Karimganj. The district was created in 1830 after annexation of Kachari Kingdom by British. In 1854, North Cachar was annexed and tagged to the district. In 1951 erstwhile North Cachar Sub-Division was made a separate district and taken out of Cachar.In 1983 erstwhile Karimganj Sub-Division and in 1989, Hailakandi Sub-Division was made a separate District.
Origin of the name:
There are two possibilities regarding the origin of the name. They are- 1. The Kacharis gave this name Cachar when they ruled this land. 2. The word Kachar in Sylhette (Bengali of Sylhet) means a stretch of land at the foot of a mountain. Hence the name Cachar might have been given by Bengalies of Sylhet as the land is surrounded by mountains.
The circumstances under which the Kacharis came and ruled this land is briefly stated below:
In December, 1706, the Kachari King Tamradhaja, whose capital was at Maibong on the bank of the Mahur River,was invaded by the most powerful Ahom king Rudra Singha. Being defeated by the Ahom King, Tamradhaja fled southwards to Khaspur.From this time onwards the Kachari princes seemed to have settled in the plains of Cachar, their court being located at Khaspur. The Kachari King Suradarpa Narayan set himself to recognise the people and improve the capital Brick buit palaces and temples were constructed in different parts of Khaspur. It is said that the demoness Hirimba, whom the second Pandava Bhima married, resided in this place. Hence the kingdom was named Hirimba kingdom in memory of the demoness. The first connection of British with the District dates from 1762, when Mr.Verelst marched from Chittogong to assist the Manipuri king Jay Singha who had been driven from his throne by the Burmese and halted with his army at Jatrapur near the present Silchar town. The army remained there for about a year, but due to death and disease among the army, Mr Verelst could not proceed further and was ultimately recalled. The next historical event of importance was the formal conversion of King Krishna Chandra to Hinduism in 1770.
A few years later last prince Gobinda Chandra was driven from throne by Marjit Singha of Manipur with the help of the Burmese. Afterwards the Burmese drove Marjit Singha from this place to Surma Valley. But the British Govt. which was in possession of Sylhet expelled the Burmese and handed back the district to Gobinda Chandra.In return he was required to pay an annual tribute of Rs.10,000. The king then shifted his abode to Haritikar, but in 1830 he was assisinated by batch of Manipuri murderers. In the absence of a natural heir, this territory lapsed to the British Govt. under the term of a treaty executed in 1826.This district was formally annexed by the pro-clamation of August 14,1832.
The last of the Kachari Kings, Raja Gobin Chandra was assassinated by a group of seditious persons with the help of some of his personal attendants on April 24, 1830, at Haritikar.In absence of natural heirs, his territory lapsed to the British under the terms of an agreement executed in 1826. Mr. T. Fisher, an army officer was sent to take charge of the territory with the power of a Collector and Magistrate and he took over charge on June 30, 1830, with headquarters at Cherrapunji. In 1833, the headquarters were shifted to Dudpatil and then to Silchar. Plain portion of Cachar was formally annexed to the British dominion on August 14, 1832 by a proclamation of the Governor General-in-Council. Mr. T. Fisher was gazetted to the first post of the Superintendent of the district. He unfortunately died while in service and was succeeded respectively by Messrs I.G. Burns, E.R. Lyons, E. Pearson, P.G. Verner and others.
In 1854, North Cachar was annexed to the British dominion after the death of Senapati Tularam, and tagged with Cachar. In 1874, Cachar was included in the Chief Commissionership of Assam as per proclamation of February 6, 1874, and the post of Superintendent was re-designated as the Deputy Commissioner and Mr. R. Stuart was the first Deputy Commissioner of the district. Hailakandi Sub-division was formed on June 1, 1869. As a result of the partition of India in 1947, four Thanas of erstwhile Karimganj Sub-division of Sylhet district were transferred to Cachar. On November 17, 1951, North Cachar Sub-division was carved out of this district and made part of the newly formed district of United Mikir and North Cachar Hills.
On July 1, 1983, Karimganj Sub-division was taken out of Cachar and declared a separate district.
On October 1, 1989, Hailakandi Sub-division was taken out of Cachar and declared a separate district.
posted by ROHAN KHAN
This page was last edited at 11:53, on 12 October 2008 by Anonymous user(s) of Wikitravel.