Parlakhemundi Estate

PARLAKHEMUNDIParlakhemundi was the capital city of the famed Parlakimidi Jamindary, now situated at the southern part of Odisha in Gajapati district. History has witnessed this city as the epicenter of the rule of Eastern Ganga dynasty. During the English rule though its status has been squeezed to a Estate only, it has never stopped its development activities. The benevolent attitudes and broadmindedness of the rulers have also impressed the Eglish officers at several times.  So they have entitled its ruler Gajapati Krishnachandra dev with Maharaja Title.  This state has played much important role in assembling the Odia speaking parts, propagating modern education system, building state infrastructures etc.

Why Parlakhemundi
Parala khemundi is named after a fort chief Prabala khemunda, opines one historian Dandapani Behera. The Parala khemundi Zamindary printed in 1890 says, the name derived from a shape of coral. As the country in shape, looks like the head of a coral or prabala. And the due course of time Pravala changes to Parala and the name came after it.

If we consider the Kalahambir school of thought then Gajapati rule in  Parla khemundi bears stories of less than  600 years but if second school of thought is taken into consideration then it has not less than one thousand years of history and logics.


The story of Parlakhemundi probably has begun from the era of Anantvarman Chodaganga Deva in between 1077 to 1147. He has extended the Eastern Gangas Kingdom from Tri Kalinga to Utkal and shifted the Capital from Mukhalingam to Bidanashi of Cuttack. He presented a centralized rule from Cuttack to his citizens of Utkal, Kalinga and Trikalinga. In the mean time some feudatory chieftains were deployed in different parts of the country to keep a vigilant eye on the enemy and collect revenue. It is believed that one of his brothers and follower of Anant Barman Permedi Deva allias Paramardi Deva being settled as the chief of Kalinga. His son also named as Chodaganga Deva-II ruled kalinga from kalinga nagar or Mukhalingam as capital. In the latter part the capital was shifted to Puruna Patana and then to Parala khemundi during the rule of Prataprudra Gajapati Narayan Deba between1748-51.

But the folk tales establishes something different. It says, one of the 18sons of Gajapati Kapilendra Deba of Puri named Hambir came here as a dissident and establishes a sovereign country called Parala Khemundi. Some historian’s do not accept this school of thought because Gajapati kapilendra Deva was from Surya Vamshi Dynasty and the present Gajapati of Parlakhemundi is from Chandra Vamshi dunasty. So relation with Hambir Deba could not be established, says one local researcher Purna Chandra Mohapatra. He says the Royal members staying in Parla Khemundi are from the ancient Ganga dynasty and they are Chandra Vamshis. Their Gotra is Atreya where as the Gotra of Surya Vamshi Kapilendra Deva is Goutama.

But the present Gajapati Gopinath Deba believes on the Hambir tale and says he is a Gangavanshi king and bear a strong relationship with Utkal Gajapati. Before Kapilendra Deva there was no Gajapati title used by the rulers. So it may be concluded that the the Gajapati titles were used by the Kings of Eastern Ganga dynasty after Kapilendra Deva or it may be treated as a competition with the Gajapati of Puri.

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