Tezpur is a city steeped in mythology, legend and folklore. Tezpur or the 'city of blood' conjures up images of the romantic legend of Usha and Anirudha. The ruins of Agnigarh, where this immortal romance blossomed, still bear mute testimony to this poignant legend.Tezpur was known as Sonitpur in olden days.
The legend revolves around Banasura, the great Asura king (devotee of Shiva), his beautiful daughter Usha and her friend Chitralekha. The ancient Sonitpur was the capital of the Asura dynasty. The princess saw a handsome prince in her dreams and fell in love with him.Chitralekha, a talented artist, not only painted his portrait from Usha's description but recognised him to be Aniruddha, grandson of Lord Krishna, ruler of Dwarka. Using her magical powers, Chitralekha spirited Aniruddha away to the princess' boudoir where the two married each other according to Gandharva rites, without the knowledge of the king. When Banasura learnt of the clandestine romance, he imprisoned Aniruddha, which led to the arrival of Lord Krishna to Sonitpur to rescue his grandson. A fierce battle ensued and the entire city was drenched in human blood, hence the name Sonitpur. In the battle of Hari (Lord Krishna) and Hara (Lord Shiva in the form of Banasura), Bana was defeated and the lovers were united forever.
In 1942, for the first time in entire British India, the tricolour was hoisted in the police station at Gahpur, a tiny mofussil town under Sonitpur district. Fourteen years old Kanaklata braved British bullets and died holding the national flag aloft.
PLACES OF INTEREST :-
Da Parbatia, Agnigarh, Bamuni Hills, The Hazara Pukuri, Cole Park, Eco Camp, Nameri National Park, Bhalukpung, Bhomoraguri, Orang Wildlife Sanctuary.
The ruins of the door frame of the De Parbatia temple, a few kilometres away from Tezpur, is perhaps the finest and oldest specimen of sculptural art in Assam. Its carving is characteristic of the style of the early Gupta school of sculpture.
The place where the legendary romance of Princess Usha and Anirudha blossomed. Usha was imprisoned inside the palace which was surrounded by a wall of fire. The palace gives a panaromic view of the great river and Tezpur.
The ruins of Bamuni Hills are famous for their exemplary artistic finesse. The sculptural remains date back to the ninth and tenth century A.D. The Bhairavi and Mahabhairab (where king Bana worshipped Mahabhairab, an incarnation of Shiva) temples and the twin tanks of Bar Pukhuri and Padum Pukhuri are the other architectural attractions of Tezpur.
The Hazara Pukhuri
The large tank preserves the name of Hazara Varman in Tezpur. It was excavated in the early part of the 19th century. This is the third largest tank in the area sprawled over 70 acres.
It is, undoubtedly, one of the most beautiful places in Tezpur. Established by a British Deputy Commissioner, Mr. Cole, the park has two massive ornamented stone pillars, and the sculptural remnants of the famous Bamuni Hills.
About 50 kms from Tezpur, off the road to Arunachal Pradesh, near the Jia Bhoroli river is the Eco Camp, a unique experiment by the Assam Anglers' Association and the state's Forest Department. The Camp organises exciting white river rafting, against the divine backdrop of lush forests and snow-capped mountains. Tourists can try their hand at casting for the elusive and endangered golden Mahseer fish, a denizen of the waters. This is part of an ecological campaign to save the mahseer - so part of the river is protected and the fish are caught and then released in a bid to stabilise their dwindling numbers.
Nameri National Park
Near the Jia Bhoroli river, the Nameri National Park sprawls over from Assam to Aruachal Pradesh. As in Kaziranga, the best way to travel within the Park is atop elephants. There are no roads inside the park. The park is home to the mithun or Indian bison and the rare white winged wood duck, among the most endangered avian species in the world.
Bhalukpung is a charming picnic and angling spot, 60 km from Tezpur, on the road to Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh. Other attractions of Bhalukpung are a hot spring and a huge orchid garden.
A mammoth stone inscription made by the Ahom General Kalia Bhomora Phukan, who planned to construct a bridge over Brahmaputra. Almost two centuries later, a bridge at the same site now stands completed. The 3.05 km bridge, named after the great Ahom general connects Nagaon district with Tezpur.
Orang Wildlife Sanctuary
This sanctuary sprawled over an area of 72 sq. km, is only 65 km from Tezpur. The species of fauna which the area abounds in, are the one-horned rhinoceros, buffalo, leopard, sambhar, barking deer and tiger.
Other Cities in Assam