History & Geography of Dadra & Nagar Haveli




The history & geography of Dadra & Nagar Haveli highlight the topographical and historical features of the union territory. The history of Dadra and Nagar Haveli takes us to the period of early 13th century.

The union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli lies in the following geographical coordinates:

Longitude: 72 degrees 50 minutes to 73 degrees 15 minutes East
Latitude: 20 degrees to 20 degrees 25 minutes North


The River Damanganga flows through the union territory and opens into the Arabian Sea. Dadra and Nagar Haveli is bordered by the Indian states of Maharashtra and Gujarat. Ranges of the Sahyadri Mountains of the Western Ghats lie in the region. The chief occupation of the people of the union territory is agriculture. More than 40 percent of the total area comprises of forest region that are rich in flora and fauna. The total area of the region is divided into 3 villages in Dadra and 69 villages in Nagar Haveli.

The profound history of Dadra and Nagar Haveli begins with the defeat of the Kohli chieftains of the region by the invading Rajput kings. It was the Marathas that retrieved the region from the rule of the Rajputs in the mid 18th century. In 1779, the Maratha Peshwa formed an alliance with the Portuguese allowing them to collect revenue from the 79 villages of Dadra and Nagar Haveli. The rule of the Portuguese in the region continued till the region gained independence on 2nd August 1954. The region was merged with the Union of India in the year 1961.

Flora

With 20852 hectares of the total geographical area being covered in forests, the union territory is rich in Dadra & Nagar Haveli flora. The flora of Dadra and Nagar Haveli comprise of a thick growth of rare species of trees in the forests. The prior concern of the forest department is to protect the forest environment and thus lays emphasis on the need to maintain the ecological balance in the region. The forest department of Dadra and Nagar Haveli is also engaged in the rehabilitation of the degraded and depleted flora in the union territory.

The flora in Dadra and Nagar Haveli comprise of the rare species of Sadra, Mahara, Sisam, Khair and teak trees. A part of the thick forest region is navigable where 58 tribal villages of the union territory reside. The villages gather their food and fodder from the forest. The forest of Dadra and Nagar Haveli is are rich in economic resources that are used in the small and cottage industries that have developed in the region. Precautions are taken by the forest department to ensure that the use of the forest resources do not lead to deforestation.

The verdant forests of the union territory present a multitudinous variety of Dadra & Nagar Haveli flora. The government has declared most of the region as sanctuaries and protects the endangered species of plants and trees in the region from extinction. Along with the flora, the union territory is rich in fauna that finds its home in the forests of Dadra and Nagar Haveli.

Forests

Dadra forest is one of the chief economic resources of the union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli. The forests occupy up to 43 percent of the gross geographical area of the region.

The total geographical area covered by forests in the union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli is 20852 hectares. 58 villages of the region fall under the forest area and utilize the forest resources for their livelihood. The forest in Dadra has a rich production of some of the rare species of trees. Some of prevalent trees of the region are sadra, mahara, sisam, teak and khair. Unlike most of the forests in the northern regions of the country, the forest area of the union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli are navigable.

80 percent of the population of the union territory is populated by the tribes who predominantly occupy the forest of Dadra. The tribal people gather the fodder, timber and fuel from the forests itself. With the cooperation and aid from the government, the villages in the forest region of Dadra and Nagar Haveli have set up small-scale village and cottage industries that utilize the forest resources for the production of goods. The industry producing 'Katha' is popular in the region and utilizes Khair wood from the forests of the region as its raw material.

The forest department of Dadra and Nagar Haveli supervises the Dadra forest area and emphasizes the need to maintain the ecological balance in the region. The forest department is engaged in the rehabilitation of the degraded forest area.

Mountains

Dadra mountains are part of the Western Ghat region of India and occupy a significant portion of the 491 square kilometers of Dadra and Nagar Haveli. The sylvan mountains of Dadra and Nagar Haveli mainly occupy the north - eastern and eastern part of the union territory. The Sahyadri mountains belonging to the Western Ghats make the hilly terrain in this part. The Sahyadri range is basically a relict of an ancient tableland that remained unaffected by the later tectonic activities. The terrain of Dadra and Nagar Haveli alternates between steep-sided valleys and low lying laterite plateaux.

The mountainous craggy land do not cover the central part of Dadra and Nagar Haveli, which is mainly dominated by plain land with very fertile and productive soil. The Dadra Mountains are mostly covered by verdant forests and this makes the place rich in scenic beauty. The sparkling rivers form gorgeous waterfalls and makes the place resplendent in natural beauty.

Rivers

The Dadra rivers comprise mainly of the Damanganga river and its three tributaries that drain the entire land of the Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli. The union territory is dissected by the river itself into two distinct parts. The Damanganga river rises in the Western Ghat region of Maharashtra and crosses through Dadra and Nagar Haveli, finally emptying itself in the waters of the Arabian Sea around the port of Daman.

The Damanganga river has tributaries that flow towards the west and drain the terrain of the Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli. They are the Bhagwan river that runs along the northern boundary, and the Kalem river running along the southern boundary. The Damanganga flows majestically in the central part of it. The river provides 83.33 Mm3 of water yearly from the Madhuban reservoir to the Union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli.

On its way, the sparkling rivers of Dadra form many dazzling waterfalls, scenic waterfronts and bubbling streams. A beautiful waterfront extends around 20 km from Khanvel, at Dudhni where arrangements for various water sports are flourishing. Rowing boats, water scooters, shikaras, canoeing and kayaking among this extremely romantic landscape is growing as a place of major tourist attraction in India. Opulent tents by the banks of the Dadra rivers make it a great getaway for the lovers of nature in its pristine beauty. Many trekking trails pass by the beautiful rivers amidst the stretches of the lush green hills. The river Sakartond also flows past this green and beautiful land.

Location

The exact location of Dadra & Nagar Haveli is between the parallels of 20° and 20°25' North latitude and the meridians of 72°50' and 73°15' East longitude. This union territory of India is situated on the western part of the country.
The place is bound by the Valsad district of the state of Gujarat on the north, east and west. The Thane and Nashik districts of the state of Maharashtra borders the union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli on the south and south - east respectively.

The union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli occupies the western side of the Western Ghats and stretches over an area of 491 square kilometer. Dadra and Nagar haveli can be divided into two sections with the Damanganga river flowing in between and together they consists of 72 villages. Of these Dadra has 3 villages to itself while Nagar Haveli has 69 villages.

Endowed with the pristine beauty of nature the capital of Dadra and Nagar Haveli in Silvassa is 24 kms from the coast of Arabian sea, and is around 180 kms to the north of the city of Mumbai. It is around 120 km from Surat in Gujarat and just 14 km from Bhilad. The location of Dadra and Nagar Haveli on the foothills of the Western Ghat gives it the characteristic craggy terrain. Other nearby places to Dadra and Nagar Haveli are Vapi at 20 km, Daman at 30 km, Nashik at 140 km, Ahmedabad at 375 km, Pune at 290 km and Trambakeshwar at 116 km.

Last Updated on 7/5/2013