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Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (Retd.)

Chandrabhaga (चंद्रभागा) is ancient name of Chenab River. It is name of River mentioned in Mahabharata, Skanda Purana etc.

Chandrabhaga River is also in Bhilwara district of Rajasthan.

Other places with name Chandrabhaga

  • Chandrabhaga beach is situated three km east of the Sun temple of Konark,[1] and 30 km from Puri. Until recent years Chandrabhaga was considered a place of natural cure for lepers.

Ancient Chandrabhaga

Ancient Chandrabhaga was founded by Chandrasen, the Jat king of Malawa in about the end of 6th century AD or beginning of 7th Century AD.

Modern Jhalrapatan, in the Jhalawar region of Rajasthan, was founded by the side of an artificial lake in 1796, close to an old site, by Zalim Singh the chief of Jhalawar, and became a centre of trade. The ancient site near the town was occupied by the city of Chandrabhaga, said to have been destroyed in the time of Aurangzeb. The finest feature of this site is the temple of Sitaleshwar Mahadeva (ca. 689), an exemplar of the architecture and sculpture of the Jhalawar region. Once, this region was part of the territory of Kotah. In the description of James Fergusson accompanying the image, 'Jhalrapatan, or "the city of bells" so called from the hundred and eight temples which it once contained, was a city of great antiquity, but fell into decay. It was rebuilt at the close of the last century, and is now one of the principal commercial towns of Upper Malwa. The plate shows one of the ancient temples which has been restored. The state of Jhalawar is an offshoot of Kotah, which was detached from it in style.

Chandrabhaga River in Mahabharata

Chandrabhaga (चन्द्रभागा) (River finds mention at various Parvas: (II.9.19), (II.9), (VI.10.14), (VIII.30.35),

Bhisma Parva, Mahabharata/Book VI Chapter 10 mentions it in shloka 14:

शतद्रुं चनद्रभागां च यमुनां च महानदीम
दृषद्वतीं विपाशां च विपापां सदूलवालुकाम (Mbt:VI.10.14)

Sabha Parva, Mahabharata/Book II Chapter 9 mentions it in shloka 19:

विपाशा च शतद्रुश च चन्द्र भागा सरस्वती
इरावती वितस्ता च सिन्धुर थेव नथस तदा (Mbt:II.9.19)

Karna Parva/Mahabharata Book VIII Chapter 30 mentions it in shloka 35:

पञ्च नथ्यॊ वहन्त्य एता यत्र पीलु वनान्य अपि
शतथ्रुश च विपाशा च तृतीयेरावती तदा
चन्द्र भागा वितस्ता च सिन्धुषष्ठा बहिर गताः (Mbt:VIII.30.35)

Mythological references

Mythological 'Shamba' (Krishna's Son) the cured leper worshiped the Sun God for cure on the river mouth of Chandrabhaga, the river dried. It is reduced to a dry bed or a narrow trickle. It has been an ideal place for religious activity.

According to another mythological reference, Chandrabhag, the daughter of a sage, caught the attraction of the Sun God by her magical charm. The God came down to seek her hand in love. Chandrabhaga did not offer herself to the God. Maddened by romantic pangs, the God chased behind a frightened Chandrabhaga who jumped in to the river and killed herself, succeeded in protecting her chastity. As a mark of tribute to her sacrifice, every year on the 7th day of the full moon fortnight of Magha month, people from all over the state and outside gather to take a holy dip in the river that is reduced to a shallow pool, offer their prayers to the Sun God and enjoy the sunrise.[2]

Chandrabhaga's sacrifice might have been forgotten, but the place which bears her name is remembered as a holy shrine and the place of the Rising Sun. It continues to inspire religious and meditative activities. It has been a big hunting ground for poets, artists and lovers. A moments pause at Chandrabhaga is believed to be a great fatigue healer. Numerous visitors to Konark make Chandrabhaga a positive stop. A light house can be found close to Chandrabhaga.

Chandrabhaga is rich in her marine resources. A large colony of fishermen from Andhra Pradesh beside the dried river mouth represents the typical tribal life of India.



Notable persons

External links


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