Brahmapur is located in Odisha
Location in Odisha, India
Brahmapur is located in India
Brahmapur (India)
Brahmapur is located in Asia
Brahmapur (Asia)
Brahmapur is located in Earth
Brahmapur (Earth)
Coordinates: 19°18′54″N 84°47′39″E / 19.3150°N 84.7941°E / 19.3150; 84.7941
Country India
State Odisha
First settled1672[1]
Named forLord Brahmeshwar
 • TypeMunicipal Corporation
 • BodyBrahmapur Municipal Corporation (BeMC)
 • MayorSmt. Sanghamitra Dalei
 • Municipal CommissionerShri J Sonal IAS
 • SP, Berhampur Police DistrictSaravana Vivek M, IPS
 • Member of ParliamentPradeep Kumar Panigrahy (BJP)
 • Member of Legislative AssemblyK. Anil Kumar (BJP)
 • Total86.82 km2 (33.52 sq mi)
24 m (79 ft)
 • Total355,823
 • Density4,100/km2 (11,000/sq mi)
 • OfficialOdia
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
Telephone code0680
Vehicle registration
  • OR-07 (old)
  • OD-07

Brahmapur (pronounced [bɾɔhmɔpuɾ]; also known as Barampur or Berhampur) is a city on the eastern coastline of Odisha, India.[3][4]


The name of the city is said to have been derived from the name of Lord Brahmeswara, worshipped in a temple at Lathi, 4 km from the main town.[5]


Jaugada, 35 km away from Brahmapur on the banks of the Rushikulya, was an ancient fort and city existing from 3rd century BC to 7th century AD. Its existence before and after this time period cannot be ruled out. Also called Samapa, it was a provincial headquarter of Maurya Dynasty along with Dhauli as evident from the edicts found at both places. Specific history about the place and civilisation does not exist after the Maurya Dynasty and the fort is now buried.[5]

Brahmapur is also known as the Silk city for its famous Berhampur Patta (Silk) Sarees. The Chief of the Dera community, Kota Chandramani Kubera Senapati, led his community people to migrate to Mohuri (Brahmapur) who settle down into their hereditary profession of weaving tussar silken products or Patta Matha. They migrated to the city from Rajahmundry (they were known as Debanga there) sometime during the period 1662-1672 on the request of the then Raja Harihar Narayan Deo of Mohuri zamindari. The cult of Buddhi Thakurani Yatra also originated along with the emergence of weaver community in here. They started the Ghata Yatra (Pot Festival) for the purpose of highlighting the tradition of worshiping the Godesses as well as to use it as a platform for sales promotion of their silken products.[6][7]

Period of British Rule

The Ganjam Garhjat area was consisted of 22 zamindaris of various royal lineages. The French invaded Ganjam in 1759 (in the battle of Deccan) and quit in 1763. The British imposed their authority over southern Odisha in 1766 and placed the whole region under the Madras Presidency. The district headquarters of Ganjam district started functioning in 1768 from Potagarh. An epidemic broke out in 1815 and that forced the authorities to shift the headquarters to Brahmapur including the civil and military personnels. Brahmapur was the capital and residence of the Mohuri (Mahuri) zamindar. But the Ganjam collectorate could not continue for a long time and shifted to Chhatrapur in 1831 due to stiff resistance here. After the auction and abolishing the Ghumusar and Sorada zamindari in 1836, Britishers auctioned Mohuri zamindari in 1850 over non payment of tax dues and introduced Ryotwari system of tax collection which led to Raja Krushna Chandra Narendra Deo out of power. The then value of Mohuri, which was a leading zamindari, was valued at 50 lakh rupees but no Indian dared to come forward to bid for it. So, it was auctioned for only 100 rupees. Britishers were stationed at Bhapur area, at the centre of Brahmapur. They built military lines, a military hospital (now City hospital), a magazine house and a parade ground (now Brahmapur stadium) for sepoys there. Subsequently, Brahmapur was formed into a Taluk and was kept under a senior Assistant Collector. The present Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC) residence was his residence. In 1867, Brahmapur was declared as a Municipality area and this being a part of Madras Presidency, it attracted further influx of settlers from south because of better engagement in business sectors. The bi-lingualism (Odia and Telugu) prevails since that time. The Brahmapur railway station started functioning by 1900. This had profound effects in the transport system and mobility of passengers. The population in 1901 was 25729 which increased to 62343 by 1951 as per census report. The colonial town generated a considerable amount of interest among Indian scholars who linked the important issues of modernity, national aspirations, notions of citizenship and the creation of new artistic sensibilities. The city is also known for its love for the theatre and cinema. The Ganjam Kala Parishad and Prakasam Hall are one of the oldest theatre halls in the country. The Sri Sitaram Vilas Talkies is the oldest movie hall in Odisha which was established in 1927 but closed down after the devastating 1999 Odisha cyclone.[8][9][10][11]

Role in Orissa Province formation

Brahmapur was where Odias assembled and started their agitations more than three decades prior to demanding introduction of Odia as a subject in the Madras University and recognition of Odia language in courts and government offices of Ganjam. This paved the path for the public grievances. In 1903 at the First Utkal Union Conference at Cuttack, Raghava Rao from Brahmapur moved a resolution which called separation of the district of Ganjam, Ganjam Hill Tracts Agency and Vizagapatam Hill Tracts Agency from Madras Presidency. Subsequently, an annual conference of the Ganjam Jatiya Samiti (Ganjam National Conference) was held in 11 & 12 April 1903 at Brahmapur. It saw the participation of prominent leaders from Odisha like Madhusudan Das, Gopabandhu Das, Radhanath Ray, Nanda Kishore Bal and Fakir Mohan Senapati. After continuous efforts the undivided Sambalpur district was transferred to Orissa division from Central Provinces and Berar on 1 September 1905. Although the long standing claims of Odias of Ganjam was ignored. On 1912, Bihar and Orissa Province formed without Ganjam district and Vizagapatnam Agency. Although Telugus opposed the amalgamation of Brahmapur, the leaders of the Andhra Movement advocated that, provinces were to be created on a linguistic basis. Some distinguished Telugu gentlemen like Dr. B.Pattabhisitarameya, an ardent nationalist, proposed to include Odia regions of Ganjam and Vizagapatnam to merge with Orissa. N. Subha Rao, a Telugu member of the Imperial Legislative Council pleaded for the same with some compensatory gain. Sri Rama Rayanger, a member of Council of Governor-General of India strongly supported the amalgamation. He presided over a meeting at Brahmapur where both Odias and Telugus attended and he said that both groups suffered under the Madras government. From 1920 to 1936, the Odia Movement became more active and vigorous after British administration ignored the demands of the Odias in their Government of India Act 1919. Prominent leaders of Odisha repeatedly put the amalgamation question in the Provincial Legislative Councils, the Imperial Legislative Council and even in the British Parliament. Mahatma Gandhi when he visited Brahmapur on 29 March 1921 appealed to the non-odias to yield to the demand of Odisha amalgamation. When he returned he wrote an article supporting the demands of Odias in Young India. In 1928 when the Simon Commission visited India, Krushna Chandra Gajapati, the Maharaja of Paralakhemundi Estate and Bhubaneswar Rath of Brahmapur appeared before the commission at Madras and presented memorandum claiming merger. The commission recommended the merger on the basis of linguistic pattern and appoint a sub-committee, to conduct detailed investigation. The report of the Simon Commission led to the summoning of the Round Table Conference in London in 1930. The Maharaja of Paralakhemundi, leading an Odia delegate to the conference circulated a pamphlet, The Oriyas, their need and reasons for separate state. The Government of India appointed a boundary commission for Orissa with S.P. O'Oonell as Chairman whose report was opposed by Odias as it only recommended the inclusion of the plains and the agency of Ganjam and excluded areas like Paralakhemundi, Manjusa, Tekali, Tarla etc. Odia speaking people in and around Brahmapur town tried their best to justify the linguistic affinity and socio-cultural attachment with the Odias of Odisha and Odia speaking people outside Odisha. They argued how under non-odia census officers, the population of Odias decreased from census to census. People realised Brahmapur could become a noble point in the growth of socio-political consciousness and that territorial dismemeberment of Odia speaking areas was the reason for backwardness under British rule. On 25 March 1933, Sashibhusan Rath led an Odia delegation to the Collector of Ganjam. Similarly at many places in and around Brahmapur protest meetings were organized demanding the merger of Paralakhemundi in Orissa. The Maharaja of Paralakhemundi again went to London to give evidence before the Joint Select Committee and after strenuous efforts he was able to include the Odia majority portion of Paralakhemundi Estate along with its town and Jeypore Estate in the new province of Orissa. In line with the recommendation of the Joint Select Committee, the Government of India Act of 1935 was passed by the British Parliament and the Orissa Province was formed in 1st April 1936.[12]


The city is administered by the Brahmapur Municipal Corporation (BeMC). The city used to be the first municipality which was formed in 1867, and was upgraded to a municipal corporation on 29 December 2008. The Municipal body completed its 150 years in 2017.[13]

The Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC) of Southern range is located in Brahmapur and covers the undivided Ganjam, Koraput, Kandhamal and Kalahandi districts.

The headquarters for Brahmapur Tehsil, District Education Office (Ganjam) and Brahmapur Sub-Division are also situated here.


Literacy rates in Brahmapur

As of 2011 Census of India (provisional), the population of Berhampur was 355,823, of which 185,584 were males and 170,239 were females making it the fourth most populous urban city in Odisha state[14] and 126th in India.

The effective literacy rate of Berhampur was 90.04%, higher than the national average of 74.04%. Male and female literacy rates were 93.83% and 85.92%, respectively. 8.2% of the population were children ages 0–6 years. The adult and child sex ratios were 917 and 898 females per 1000 males, respectively.[14]

As of 2021 Census of India (provisional), the population of Berhampur was 356,598, of which 185,754 were males and 170,844 were females making it the fourth most populous urban city in Odisha state[15] and 126th in India.

The effective literacy rate of Berhampur was 81.20%, higher than the national average of 77.70%. Male and female literacy rates were 84.40% and 77.73%, respectively. 9.02% of the population were children ages 0–6 years. The overall sex ratio was 919 and child sex ratio was 909.[15]

Religion in Brahmapur[16]

Climate and regional setting

Maximum summer temperature is 40 °C; minimum winter temperature is 22 °C. The mean daily maximum temperature varies from 27 °C to 32 °C. May is the hottest month; January is the coldest. The average annual rainfall is 1190 mm and the region receives monsoon and torrential rainfall from July to October.

Climate data for Berhampur, Odisha
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 27.4
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) 16.7
Average rainfall mm (inches) 10

Educational institutions

This section may contain unverified or indiscriminate information in embedded lists. Please help clean up the lists by removing items or incorporating them into the text of the article. (August 2022)

Culture and contemporary life

Brahmapur is famous for its food and markets and also known as food capital of Odisha.

Most famous markets are Annapurna Market, Bada Bazaar, Sano Bazaar, Bhapur Bazaar, Giri Market, Hanuman Market, Ganesh Market and Sai Complex. The mango market of Brahmapur is one of the largest wholesale mango markets in India.[52] The Balunkeswara Bana Market here is one of the largest in the state.[5]


Brahmapur has been an important site of the state's culture due to its unique Odia culture and has held several national level Odia and Telugu literary meets.[53]

Sri Sitaram Vilas Talkies (SSVT) was the first cinema theatre in Odisha.[54]

There has been a critical lack of museums. The open air Scrap Museum near ITI is one of the largest in India.[55]


The Thakurani Jatra(biennial) is the most important festival in the city and is one of the state festivals of Odisha.[6] The cult of Buddhi Thakurani originated along with the emergence of Brahmapur town in and around 1672 AD. The Ghata Yatra was initiated for the purpose of highlighting the tradition of worshiping Thakurani as well as to use it as a platform for sales promotion of silken products.

The date for Thakurani Yatra was fixed by the yatra management committee at the house of Desi Behera, Chief of the Dera community. Buddhi Thakurani is considered as the daughter of the Desi Behera and the deity stays with her father's family during the entire Yatra period.[6]

Notable people



Brahmapur city is connected with National Highways NH-16 (ChennaiKolkata), NH-59 (Brahmapur-Khariar), NH-516 (Narendrapur-Gopalpur), State Highway 17 (Odisha) and State Highway 22 (Odisha) which connect almost all other cities and towns of Odisha.

Three-wheeler auto taxis are the most important mode of transportation in this city, with Taxis also on the city's roads. Online "C-cabs" and "ola" taxi-service app is also available. The state government has constructed a new bus station at Haladiapadar, at the outskirts of the city. The Ganjam Urban Transport Services Limited (GUTSL) with joint partnership with Odisha State Road Transport Corporation (OSRTC) have an agreement to run a city-bus service for Brahmapur to urban centres on its periphery (Chatrapur, Gopalpur and Hinjili, Taratarini, Bhairabi) since 27 February 2014.[58][59]


Brahmapur is served by its own railway station under the Khurda Road division of East Coast Railway, and is situated in the Howrah - Chennai Main Line.


The city has an airport at Rangeilunda.[60] The airstrip was in use during British Raj and World War II. However, post independence, it has lied in a dilapidated condition with no scope of expansion due to its adjacence to Berhampur University. Demands for a new greenfield airport have been echoing throughout the years but have remained futile due to government inaction.[60]

In 2018, the airport was selected for developing it into a commercial airport by the government's UDAN scheme. In view of this, in March 2023, it started commercial operations to Bhubaneswar, with flights operated twice a week.[61]


The Gopalpur port was recommisioned after renovation and expansion.[62]


Brahmapur is under the jurisdiction of Berhampur (Lok Sabha constituency). The part of Berhampur Assembly Constituency and Gopalpur Assembly Constituency spread over the city.


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