is Asia's Silicon Valley because of its thriving information
technology industry. Bangalore is India's fifth -
largest and fastest - growing city. Until its high-tech
boom began in the late 1980s, it was known as the
Garden City, with greenery flourishing in its pleasant,
temperate climate. Today with a growing population
of young professionals, it has acquired a vibrant,
cosmopolitan air. Bangalore was founded in the 16th
century by a local chieftain, Kempe Gowda, but derives
its name from the Kannada word benda kaluru, or "boiled
beans", which an old woman gave a 10th century
Hoysala King when he turned up hungry at her doorstep.
Based on information from the Gazetteer of India,
Karnataka State, Bangalore District section, the name
"Bangalore" is an anglicised version of
"Bengalooru," a word in the local Kannada
language that was given to a town. The story goes
that this word was derived from the phrase "bende
kaalu ooru," which translates into "the
town of boiled beans." It is said that King Ballala
of the Hoysala dynasty lost his way in the jungle
while on a hunting expedition. Tired and hungry, he
encountered a poor, old woman who offered him the
only food she had - some boiled beans. Grateful to
her, the king named the place "bende kaalu ooru."
However, historical evidence shows that "Bengalooru"
was recorded much before King Ballala's time in a
9th century temple inscription in the village of Begur.
"Bengalooru" still exists today within the
city limits in Kodigehalli area and is called "Halebengalooru"
or "Old Bangalore."
Gowda marks the four corners of the city
historical figure instrumental in shaping the city
of Bangalore is a feudal lord who called himself Kempe
Gowda, and who served under the Vijayanagara Kings.
Hunting seemed to be a favourite past time in those
days. During one of his hunting bouts, Kempe Gowda
was surprised to see a hare chase his dog. Either
his dog was chicken hearted or the hare was lion-hearted
one does not know, but the episode surely made an
impression on the feudal lord. He told himself this
is a place surely for heroes and heroics, and he referred
to Bangalore from then onwards as "gandu bhoomi"
(heroic place). Kempe Gowda I, who was in charge of
Yelahanka, built a mud fort in 1537. With the help
of King Achutaraya, built the little towns of Balepet,
Cottonpet, and Chickpet, all inside the fort. Today,
these little areas serve as the major wholesale and
commercial market places in the city. Kempe Gowda's
son's erected the four watch towers to mark the boundaries
of Bangalore which are traceable even today and they
stand almost in the heart of the present city. A hundred
years later the Vijayanagara Empire fell, and in 1638,
it was conquered by Mohammed Adil Shah, the Sultan
shifts from Sultans to Marathas to British
1638, Bangalore was conquered by Bijapur Sultan and
ruled for next 50 years. Later it was captured by
Mughals who held it for 3 years. In 1687, the Mughal
Sultan of Sira province sold Bangalore to king Chikkadevaraja
Wodeyar of Mysore for 3 lac pagodas, who built a second
fort to the south of that built by Kempegowda I.
1759, Hyder Ali received Bangalore as a jagir from
Krishna raja Wodeyar II. He fortified the southern
fort and made Bangalore an army town. When Tipu Sultan
died in the 4th Mysore war in 1799, the British gave
the kingdom, including Bangalore back to Krishna raja
Wodeyar III. The British Resident stayed in Bangalore.
In 1831, alleging misrule by Krishna raja Wodeyar
III, the British took over the administration of the
the British influence, Bangalore bloomed with modern
facilities like the railways, telegraphs, postal and
police departments. In 1881, the British returned
the city to the Wodeyars. Diwans like Mirza Ismail,
and sir Vishweshwarayya were the pioneers to help
Bangalore attain its modern outlook.
the direct rule of the British Commissioners based
in Bangalore, it became the State Administrative HQ.
The destiny of Bangalore thus took a historic turn,
making it eventually a major city of India and one
of the fastest growing in the world.
independence, Bangalore's choice as a state capital
was only logical. Mysore had too many associations
with the royal family to be the capital of a new state
with an elected Chief Minister and a nominated Governor.
Finally, for an enlarged Karnataka, Bangalore was
more central and better linked with the major cities
of the country.
Bangalore is booming, and a look at some of its nicknames
says why: "India's Silicon Valley," "Fashion
Capital of India," "The Pub City of India,"
and on. Home to well over 6 million people, and a
base for 10,000 industries, Bangalore is India's fifth
largest city and the fastest growing city in Asia.
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