History & Heritage

History & Heritage

Historical Facts

Bharuch is the oldest city of Gujarat. It is also the second oldest city of India. Bharuch has a known history for about 8000 years.

Bharuch had trade relationships with the ancient Greek and Roman Empires. Bharuch was called by the name of Barygaza by Greeks/Romans. North India also traded with western and southern nations via Ujjain and Bharuch.

Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, an educational trust wad founded by a Bharuchian K. M. Munshi. He is a well known name in Gujarati Literature. He was also the main driving force behind the renovation of the historically important Somnath Temple. He was the first Union Minister of Food and Agriculture of independent India. Omkarnath Thakur, the first Indian musician to perform in Europe was from Bharuch.

Chhotubhai Purani and Ambubhai Purani born in Bharuch were the propagators of Indian gymnastics (Vyayam in Gujarati) in Gujarat. They founded the first gymnasium (vyayam mandir) known as Shri Laxminath Vyayam Mandir in Vadodara and Shri Batuknath Vyayam Shala in Bharuch in 1908. Even Mahatma Gandhi (Father of India) used to address the Purani brothers as Guruji as a mark of respect towards them.

Bombay Stock Exchange and Bank of Bombay was founded by Premchand Roychand (born 1831). He was the son of Roychand Dipchand, a merchant from Bharuch. He was known as the "Cotton King" and "Bullion King". He donated Rupees 2,00,000 for building Rajabai Clock Tower in the University of Bombay, named after his mother, as was the library. He is also well known for his contribution to society and his donations to causes and institutions that are still very much a part of India today.

Feroze Gandhi belonged to a Parsi family of Bharuch. He was the husband of Indira Gandhi His ancestral home still exists in Kotparsiwad area in Bharuch. Thus the biggest political family of India, the Nehru-Gandhi Family has their ancestral origins in Bharuch. Ahmed Patel was born in Ankleshwar, near Bharuch. He is the political advisor to Congress President Sonia Gandhi. He is among the core think tank of the INC today. He is also the Treasurer of All India Congress Committee.

One of the oldest library of Gujarat, Raichand Deepchand Library (started 1858) is located in Bharuch. It has a collection of around Two Lacs books. Bharuch is one of the Indian cities which has a Martian crater named after it. The crater is named Broach.

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