“GURUGRAM-THE VILLAGE OF THE SPIRITUAL TEACHER.”
Gurugram, a city located in the Southeastern part of Haryana, is one of the major satellite cities of Delhi and is a part of the National Capital Region of India. It is not just one of the largest Information Technology hubs in India, also known as the cyber city, but is also one of the top hubs for Information Technology activity in Asia-Pacific. Although Gurugram was never a site for the chroniclers to record its history, a new connotation to the Hindu Mythology has led to the renaming of the city. So, what was Gurugram’s contribution as mentioned in the Mahabharata? Does it have its roots in the ancient texts?
Gurugram was originally a place consisting mainly of agricultural trade and has been in existence since the times of Mahabharata. The region was a part of the Kuru Kingdom in ancient India. It initially got its name from the name of Guru Drona, also referred to as Dronacharya, who was a royal teacher to the Kauravas and Pandavas. It is said that among his disciples, the Pandavas, the five sons of Pandu, the eldest son Yudhister gifted him the region as a royal Dakshina.
Hence, the region got its name as ‘Guru-gram’, translated as ‘The village of the Spiritual teacher’. Moreover ‘Gurgaon’ also denotes the same meaning as ‘Gur’ comes from ‘Guru’ and ‘Gaon’ means a village. But the way some people pronounce ‘Gur’ which can also mean ‘Jaggery’ with a slight change in the pronunciation, people felt that the original name was being misinterpreted as ‘Jaggery Village’.
Although Gurgaon was historically inhabited by the Hindu people, originally ruled over by the Ahir Clan, it later came under the rule of Emperor Akbar as a small town that consisted of people belonging to different tribal units, within the governing regions of Delhi and Agra. Although there is less recorded history about Gurugram as it was always overshadowed by other dynasties of the region who spoke the same language Haryanvi, it is known to have garnered recognition, especially during Akbar’s rule.
However, as the Mughal Empire started to decline during the colonization of India by the British, the differences among the tribal units of the region caused the town to be invaded by the British officials and got subsequently divided into small administrative units under the colonial rule. Although, after the revolt of 1987, it was reassigned to the Punjab province. After Gurgaon became a part of independent India, it fell under the Indian state of Punjab. However, in 1966, the city came under the administration of Haryana with the creation of the new state.
How did a region with an agricultural background turn into the city of IT and Innovation and home to multi-national companies?
Gurgaon was always known as a place of agricultural significance in ancient times. The population mainly consists of farmers and the economy was highly dependent on agriculture. The introduction of modern technology led to the decline of traditional farmers and farms.
The beginning of the modern city started in 1861, when the district that Gurgaon was a part of, was rearranged into five Tehsils which were: Gurgaon, Ferozepur Jhirka, Nuh, Palwal, and Rewari and the region came under the control of Gurgaon tehsil. It later became a part of independent India, as mentioned above. In 1979, the state of Haryana, further split up the Gurgaon district into two districts namely Gurgaon and Faridabad with effect from 15th August 1979.
Moreover, the recent modern technological and trade development of the city can be devoted to the collaboration of Suzuki Motors of Japan and Maruti Udyog Limited in the early eighties, with which, the new era of rapid industrialization began. It gradually started growing into a hub for the IT industry and MNC companies after the Narasimha Rao Government introduced new market economic reforms in 1991 which led to an increase in demand for housing and commercial space.
Its close proximity to Delhi, the capital of India, makes it a fine place for companies with access to the major decision-makers. It is also home to diverse companies ranging from automobiles to software companies. It is a pool of multi-talented and creative minds. The city began with developers, hence, the availability of high-quality workspace, as well as, residential areas.
It is now one of the major satellite cities of Delhi and the industrial and financial center of Haryana and has the third-largest per capita income in India after Chandigarh and Mumbai. It is also the only Indian city to have successfully distributed electricity connections to all its households.
WHY WAS GURGAON RENAMED AS GURUGRAM?
On 27 September 2019, the Manohar Lal Khattar government officially announced that the name of the city and the district would be changed to ‘Gurugram’ from ‘Gurgaon’ with the approval of the Union Government with the rising demand of the renaming of the city from the public as well as the elected representatives.
As Gurgaon had been mentioned in the Mahabharata as the center of learning where Guru Dronacharya taught the Pandavas and Kauravas. The Hindu people believed that the original name ‘Gurugram’ got distorted to ‘Gurgaon’ and that changing the name to its original one would help preserve the rich heritage and mythological importance that it carries.
This decision was faced with mixed reactions. As the region had already made a name for itself on the global map as ‘Gurgaon’, some felt that it would impose unnecessary and inexcusable expenses. Some felt that the government should focus more on developing the infrastructure of the city and tackling the already evident issues rather than focusing on the changing of the name while some felt that the renaming of the city was unnecessary as it had already been exposed to the world as ‘Gurgaon’ and people would only use that name to refer to the city.
Here are some other facts about Gurugram
Gurugram district is one of the 22 districts of Haryana and the city of Gurugram is the administrative headquarters of the district.
- It has an area of about 1258 sq. km
- It is the second-largest city in Haryana.
- The latest record of its population is 15,14,095 (Fifteen lakhs fourteen thousand and ninety-five)
- The literacy rate stands at 84.4%
- It has 193 villages and 6 Urban Local Bodies
The Deputy Commissioner of Gurugram is Dr. Yash Garg (IAS)
The Divisional Commissioner of Gurugram is Sh. Rajeev Ranjan (IAS)
Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) is its planning agency.
Gurgaon lies on the Sahibi River, a tributary of the Yamuna which originates from the Aravalli range in Rajasthan and flows through West and South Haryana into Delhi where it is known as the Najafgarh drain.
The climate of Gurgaon is an overlap between monsoon-influenced humid subtropical and semi-arid. It has a high variation between summer and winter temperatures and precipitation. Summers start in early April and peak in May, with an average monthly temperature of around 32 degrees Celsius (89.6° Fahrenheit).
SOME LESSER-KNOWN FACTS ABOUT THE CYBER HUB
As a hub for various multi-national corporate companies, Gurugram has a lot of visitors every year. Hence, making it an attractive place for tourists.
Following are some of the reasons what Gurugram is known for and why one should visit the city.
Not only is Gurugram a hub for IT and BPO companies but it is also famous for its theatrical shows.
- Kingdom of Dreams- It is India’s first live entertainment theatre and leisure destination which showcases arts, cultures, crafts, and cuisines from across the country.
- It also has various museums and historical temples which are a must for tourist attractions.
- Gurugram has a vibrant nightlife. As a cyber city, it has a lot of bars and pubs with music and dance, which makes it quite famous for its nightlife.
- It is also known as Delhi NCR’s Yoga Capital- With the popularity of Yoga in Gurugram, it has plenty of yoga studios for people who are interested in Yoga.
- It also has various water parks for people to enjoy during the blazing summer.