introduction of kachh
Sometimes, just hearing a name can inspire us to explore. Indeed, destinations like these loom so large in the canon of travel that their very mention stirs wanderlust in even the most experienced traveler. One such destination of India is Kutch , Gujarat.
Kutch a land of colour, culture and chronicle is one of districts of Gujarat where all the country`s smiles and metaphor appear to have come in concert. Ancient temples, attractive architectured palaces and rugged fort, men and women in vibrant costumes, Flamingoes and wild Asses, harsh sunlight, moderate rainfall and the cool evening breeze – are all there in abundance. The land is virtually `an island` resembling a tortoise “Katchua or Kachbo”, surrounded by seawater. Kutch District is surrounded by the Gulf of Kutch and the Arabian Sea in south and west, while northern and eastern parts are surrounded by the Great and Small RannKutch, Gujarat(seasonal wetlands) of Kutch.
When you travel to Kutch expect the unexpected because beneath the surface, you may find many contradictions. It`s truly a land of surprises; its innate splendor intrigues even the most seasoned traveler. The mood and rhythm of the country side varies from village to village with different kinds of tribes all bundled together into one land. The history goes back to the ancient times of the 3000 BC with excavation of the Indus Valley civilization. This has boasted a heritage so magnificent just like its landscape. From the rugged forts to the well-carved palace, from the serene sea coast to the desert, from the multihued costumes to the soothing euphony, from the royal lifestyle to tribal villages everything seems to be just perfect. High on hospitality and culture the people of Kutch are always welcoming guest.
The district Kutch is situate in the extreme west of India between 22′ 44′ 8′ and 24′ 41′ 30′ north latitude and 68′ 7′ 23′ and 71′ 46′ 45′ east longitude. It is surrounded on south by the Gulf of Kutch, on west by the Indian Ocean, in the north-east and south-east by the districts of Banaskantha and Mehsana. The Gulf of Kutch is separated from Kathiawar Peninsula. Kutch is also separated from Pakistan by the Great Rann of Kutch.
Geography of Kutch
Covering an area of 45,612 km², it is the largest district in the state of Gujarat and the second largest district of India after Leh. Surrounded by the Arabian Sea in the west; the Gulf of Kutch in south and southeast and Rann of Kutch in north and northeast is an island. The district had a population of 1,583,225 of which 30% were urban as of 2001.
History of Kutch
The history of Kutch goes back to 3000 BC with the discovery of the traces of the Indus Valley civilization. The past is responsible for the varied culture in Kutch. Kutch has also experienced frequent earthquake since medieval times. Kutch has experienced over 90 earthquakes up till 2001.
Nagar Panchayat and Gram Panchayat are available in Kutch which looks after the works of sanitary, drainage system, water supply, maintenance of streets, roads etc. for the cities, towns and villages. Usually, different tribes specialize in different skills.
People of Kutch
Kutchi people are kind-hearted. Diwali, Janmastami, Navratri, Ramjan Idd, Holi etc. are the important festivals of Kutch. Koteshwar, Bhadreshwar, Narayan Sarover, Jesal Toral, Swaminarayan Temple etc. are the holy places of Kutch. Ashapura, Ambaji, Rahucharaji, Hingalaj etc. are the mother Goddesses worshipped in Kutch.
There are two main agricultural communities Ahirs and Kanbis in Kutch. Communities like Jat, Mutwa, Node, Korar, Sameja, Sama, Sumra, Raishipotra, Halepotra and Bambha are active in cattle breeding in Banni. Lohana, Rajput, Brahmin, Jain, Soni etc. are the other communities of Kutch.
Time to visit Kutch
Late October to early April is the best time to visit Kutch. Kutch is the home of the last remaining population of Khur (Asiatic Wild Ass) in India. There is also a large population of the birds like flamingos. Both are protected in 5000 kms Little Rann Sanctuary in Dhangadhra. One has to get permission to enter the sanctuary from the superintendent’s office in Dhangadhra.