Warangal also known as Orugallu, and Ekasila Nagaram is a city and a municipal corporation in Warangal district in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Warangal is located 148 kilometres (92 mi) northeast of the state capital of Hyderabad and is the administrative headquarters of Warangal District.It is part of a tri-city comprising of Warangal,Hanamakonda and Kazipet. It is the fifth largest city in Andhra Pradesh with a population of nearly 8 to 9 lakhs including Hanamakonda and Kazipet. (2001 census).
Warangal was the capital of a Hindu Shaivaite kingdom] ruled by the Kakatiya dynasty from the 12th to the 14th centuries. The old name of this newly formed city is Orugallu.Oru means one and Kallu means stone. The Ancient name was Andhra Nagaram please refer Andhra Maha Vishnu temple.
Literary evidence shows that long before Satavahanas, a legendary king named Andhra Vi?h?u ruled in and around the Diviseema region of Andhra Pradesh. After his reign, people came to believe that he had an amsa of the divine savior Lord Maha Vishnu himself. Perhaps in his honor, people dedicated a new temple now located at Srik?ku?am, Krishna District. The lord of the temple is known as ?ndhra Vi?h?u or Srik?ku??ndhra Vi?h?u. The Kakatiyas left many monuments, including an impressive fortress, four massive stone gateways, the Swayambhu temple dedicated to Shiva, and the Ramappa temple situated near Ramappa Lake. The cultural and administrative distinction of the Kakatiyas was mentioned by the famous traveller Marco Polo. Famous or well-known rulers included Ganapathi Deva, Prathapa Rudra, and Rani (queen) Rudrama Devi. After the defeat of PratapaRudra, the Musunuri Nayaks united seventy two Nayak chieftains and captured Warangal from Delhi sultanate and ruled for fifty years. Jealousy and mutual rivalry between Nayaks ultimately led to the downfall of Hindus in 1370 A.D. and success of Bahmanis. Bahmani Sultanate later broke up into several smaller sultanates, of which the Golconda sultanate ruled Warangal. The Mughal emperor Aurangzebconquered Golconda in 1687, and it remained part of the Mughal empire until the southern provinces of the empire split away to become the state of Hyderabad in 1724 which included the Telangana region and some parts of Maharashtra and Karnataka. Hyderabad was annexed to India in 1948, and became an Indian state. In 1956 Hyderabad was partitioned as part of theStates Reorganization Act, and Telangana, the Telugu-speaking region of Hyderabad state which includes Warangal, became part of Andhra Pradesh.
Warangal’s economy is predominantly agricultural. It has a large grain market in Enamamula. This is a rice-growing region and most farmers grow rice for both subsistence and the commerce. Cotton has also been a major cash crop since the early 1990s; however the cotton sector has been troubled in recent years, and there was a highly publicized spate of suicides by cotton farmers in 1997-1998.
Industry has been neglected in the region by successive governments. Some industries existing during the Nizam’s rule, like Azam Jahi Cloth Mills, closed down; Warangal has several small to medium scale industries.
A STPI (Software Technology Parks of India) has been set up at National Institute of Technology, Warangal with the intention of taking the benefits of the Information Technology revolution to second tier cities. Warangal makes an excellent location for this because of its proximity to Hyderabad, the student pool from some of the best institutes in the country, good transportation facilities, infrastructure, lower traffic problems, etc.
Telugu is the language spoken by the majority in Warangal. Both traditional attire like Saree and Dhoti and modern dress styles are worn. The poets of this place include the ancient poets Potana and Palkuriki Somanna to present day poets/writers like Kaloji Narayana Rao,Kaloji Rameshwara rao,Andesri, B. Rama Raju, Pervaram Jagannatham, Kovela Sampatkumara, Kovela Suprasanna,Varavara Rao,Ampasayya Naveen, Darbhasayanam Sreenivasacharya, Rama Chandramouly, Vidyarthi, Potlapally Sreenivasa Rao, Koduri Vijayakumar and Anwar Pasha have contributed to Telugu literature. “Telanganam” book widely circulated by T-NRI’s was written by Srinivas Raj Bairi, is also from Warangal.
Sarangapani was a famous folk singer,shankar was also a famous folk singer, Nerella Venu Madhav is a mimicry artist who has received accolades world wide.He is treated as father of Indian mimicry. Warangal is also hometown for popular mimicry artist and ventriloquist Mimicry Srinivas, who performed a 32-hour nonstop mimicry show in 1990 setting a world record and created and performed a unique fete in mimicry- Dhwanyadhaanam, an ashtaavadhaanam in mimicry.Srinivas is an international artiste and staged more than 6000 shows all over the world including USA, UK, UAE,Kuwait,Saudi Arabia, Behrain, Tanzania,Srilanka,Singapore, Malaysia etc.countries. Greatest renownedlyricist Chandrabose is from Waragal District. The famous Telugu Film music director Chakri is also from Warangal district.
Mamidi Harikrishna is also one prominent personality, who excelled in many aspects of knowledge such as Poetry, Painting and Writing in general and in film appreciation and criticism in particular. He has a credit of publishing many articles on Cinema including Telugu Cinema. He had a great command over Bollywood ,Hollywood cinema and World Cinema. His analyses on the contemporary developments and trends in film world had made him to won the prestigious NANDI AWARD FOR BEST FILM CRITIC,2009 by the Government of A.P.Further, he is honored with the prestigious CINIGOER TV AWARD as the BEST SCRIPT WRITER for the year 2009, which is first of its kind award won by a WARANGALITE.
Major Hindu festivals such as Bathukamma festival, Dasara, Deepavali, Sankranti are celebrated here. Bathukamma festival is very famous here and celebrated by the women worshipping the goddess for nine days with various flowers. In addition, the district hosts the Sammakka Saralamma Jatara or congregation. Every two years (bi-annually), approximately 6 million people converge for over three days around the small village of Medaram and its adjacent stream/rivulet, Jampanna Vagu, 90 km from Warangal city. This fair is said to be the largest repeating aggregation of tribal communities in the whole world and commemorates the valiant fight put up by a mother-daughter combination (Samakka and Sarakka) with the reigning Kakatiya king over an unjust law. Also, this is second biggest congregation in Asian continent after Kumbha Mela in India. Bonalu and Bathukamma festivals, symbolic of theTelangana region are also celebrated here (Bathukamma is celebrated particularly by women) with gusto.
Every year during the month of Ramzan, there is a festival atmosphere in Muslim areas, especially in Mandi Bazaar where the main road remains closed in the evening and is only accessed by foot. Many make shift shops and food eateries crop up serving the famous haleem dish and lots of other foods, sweets and seviyan. Night shopping is very famous here when people fast the whole day and come for shopping, casual walk in the evening and shops are open almost till 1am in the night.
Fatima Feast is celebrated every year on February 12 and 13 by Catholic Christians at their Warangal Diocesian Headquarters of Cathedral Church in Fatima Nagar, Kazipet
Veyyi Stambhala Gudi or 1000 Pillar Temple. It has a catchy and apt name. There are thousand pillars of many varieties and sizes; some of them are even part of others! The pillars that support the central ‘Natya Mandapam’ (dance floor) are large and made of multiple blocks of stone. The other catch is psychological. When you hear “Veyyi Stambalu” (thousand pillars) you imagine a farm of pillars. For my expectation, the temple was much smaller. More so because a mandapam (see left of the picture below), that contributes 400 of 1000 pillars, was dismantled by the Archeological Survey of India for reconstruction. Unlike pillars in other temples of India, pillars of the main temple, are tightly knit and form its walls and so don’t seem like there are 600 of them. The temple is star shaped with three shrines devoted to Rudradeva (Shiva), Vishnu, and Surya (Sun). Interestingly, the third deity is not Brahma who is part of the Trinity of God [as in the Trinity (which consists of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva) in Suchindrum] because the Kakatiyas worshipped Lord Shiva and Lord Surya and not so much Brahma. On the fourth side is Shiva’s vehicle, Nandi or Bull. Unlike most temples in India that face east, 1000 pillar temple faces south. Because, the Kakatiyas, worshipers of Lord Shiva, wanted early morning sun rays to fall directly on Shiva Lingam. So, of the three shrines, Shiva’s shrine faces east and other shrines face south and west. On the fourth side is Nandi. Adding to the uniqueness, the Nandi in 1000 pillar temple looks east, unlike most Nandis in Indian temples that look west. Between these four is the Natya Mandapam (dance floor) where dancers performed
The Ramappa temple is near the ancient engineering marvel of the 13th century AD Ramappa tank. The ancient Ramappa tank can be dated back to the period of Kakatiyas. It is a well-conceived tank where a 2000 ft long earthen dam connects a semi circular chain of hills to form a lake. The Ramalingeswara Temple is popularly known as the Ramappa temple because the chief sculptor was Ramappa. It is probably the only temple in India to be known by the name of the sculptor who builds it. It was built under the patronage of the King Kakati Ganapathi Deva by his Chief Commander Rudra Samani at Ranakude in the province of Atukuru. The temple has been described as the “brightest star in the galaxy of medieval temples in the Deccan”. The temple is approached thorough a royal garden, now just a lawn with tree lined path. The temple is situated in a valley and is built with bricks so light that they can float on water. Yet the temple is so strong that it is still intact after numerous wars, invasions and natural calamities. The Ramappa temple stands on a 6 ft high platform on a cruciform plan. The sanctum is crowned with a shikhara and is surrounded by a pradakshinapatha. Rich and intricate carvings adorn the walls, pillars and ceilings of this wonderful building. The hall in front of the sanctum has numerous beautifully carved pillars that have been placed to create an effect that combines light and space wonderfully. There are many votive shrines within the temple. There are two subsidiary shrines on either side of the main temple, which are in a good condition. The entire temple complex is enclosed with a compound wall. At the entrance to the temple is a ruined Nandi mandapam, with an imposing 9 ft high Nandi, which is still intact. The Shivalingam in the sanctum also rises to a height of 9 ft. The east-facing sanctum is surrounded with pilasters crowned with Dravidian and Nagara shikharas in an alternating fashion. There is an additional entrance from the north also leading to the Navaranga mandapam in front of the sanctum. The ceiling is divided into compartments by columns from the bottom and is carved with intricate patterns. There is a richness of carvings in this temple on dark rock with a smooth finish, portraying an amazing range of themes from the Puranas and various Indian mythological stories. The temple signifies many facets of Shiva, his royal residence, the Himalaya Mountains and his inhabiting a sacred space beyond the mortal realm. The temple is built upon the classical pattern of being first raised upon a platform that separates its sacred functions from the taint of the everyday. This ‘sacred mountain’ mindset was characteristic of the temple builders in all the cultures. It represented a powerful symbolic representation of a perfect building, an intersection in midair of the spheres of heaven and earth. The platform lifts it above the normal, transcends the profane, declaring with uncompromising firmness that it is a place for un-common activities dedicated to a god. Maha Shiva Ratri is celebrated for a period of three days in this temple Many of the smaller structures are neglected and are in ruins in the Ramappa temple. There were even instances of people carrying away the bricks, to be proudly exhibited that they can float on water, before the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) took charge of it. The main entrance gate in the outer wall of the temple is ruined, so one can enter only through a small west gate.
Warangal Fort is one of the architectural wonders of the bygone era. Sited in south-east of Warangal city, the massive structure was built in the 13th century by rulers of the Kakatiya dynasty. Though presently in ruins, Warangal Fort still boasts of the dexterity of artists of earlier times. On the brink of Ekashila (a hill rock), the Citadel appears diffused in the several layers. In the mid-13th century, the construction of this colossal structure was initiated by the Kakatiyan king, Ganapatideva. Rani Rudramaa, who was the daughter of the King, further made the efforts to complete the construction work. Once, one of the impregnable forts in Andhra Pradesh, Warangal Fort is today very popular for its architectural brilliance, which is above and beyond its history. The loose ends of the edifice include commanding gateways and graceful towers that elevate to no less than 50 feet. The remarkable feature about the main gateway comprises of the four gigantic pillars, which have been crafted out of a single rock. Warangal Fort, having three protective layers, suggests the standards of security that used to be employed to guard the inner precincts and center of power. The pride of Kakatiya dynasty, it had two fortifications, with the inner one consisting of four stone gateways. The remnants of the fort present a valuable insight of the past civilization. The wreckage comprises of intricate sculpturea, stone works, motifs and designs – depicting animals like lions and swans. Within the Warangal Fort, you can see remains of the temples that had been erected by the early Qutub Shahi kings. It has many possessions that are worth-seeing. In short and snappy terms, visit the fort and explore this standing testimony of its glorious past.
The Bhadrakali Temple is located on the hilltop between the twin cities of Hanamkonda and Warangal in Andhra Pradesh. The temple is dedicated to the goddess Bhadrakali. Though the image of the deity is called Bhadrakali, the goddess is said to have been transformed by mantras into a very rare form called the Tripura Sundari. Tripper Sundry (Beauty of the Three Worlds or cities) is regarded as the supreme manifestation of Priority – the feminine power that is the vital energy of the universe. The structure of the temple reflects the architectural style of Chalukyas. The 250 year old temple is believed to have been constructed by the Kakativas and is located on the banks of the Bhadrakail Lake. This temple complex houses the deity in her several different forms and avatars. The most remarkable feature of the temple is the square shaped stone image of the Goddess in a sitting posture with fierce looking eyes and face. The Goddess is seen wearing a crown and having eight hands holding various weapons. A major attraction in the vicinity of the temple is the 2-km radius artificial lake. A number of natural rock formations in the surroundings add to the spiritual charm of the temple. Some of these unique rock formations are said to carry immense spiritual powers.