(Last Updated on : 21/01/2014)
History of Chitrakoot district
in Uttar Pradesh
dates back to the time since it first found its mention in the Valmiki Ramayana
. The epic describes it as a sacred place inhabited by a huge variety of flora and fauna and great sages. Two great sages namely Valmiki and Bharadwaj have spoken very highly of Chitrakoot and according to Indian mythology
it was advised to Lord Rama
to take refuge in this place during exile as the place has the property of relieving a person from worldly desires and soothing the mind for focussing and achieving the highest goals of life. The charm of the place had also been admitted by Lord Rama himself. Chitrakoot has also found a favoured place in the Ramopakhyan and the narrations of pilgrimage sites in Mahabharata
. Brihat Ramayana and Adhyatma Ramayana also testify the enchanting natural beauty and spiritual aura of Chitrakoot. In fact Brihat Ramayana has about sixteen sections dedicated to the narrations of the place. The entire Indian literature associated with Lord Rama has prominently described the beauty of the place. Chitrakoot has also found significant place in the compositions of Sanskrit
in his epic named Raghuvansa
has also wondrously described this place. He called Chitrakoot as 'Ramgiri
' owing to its associations with Lord Rama. In his composition Meghdoot
he had portrayed it as the place of exile. Tulsidas
, the renowned poet of Hindi, has cited this place in almost all of his major works including Vinay Patrika, Dohawali, Kavitawali and Ramcharit Manas. His work Vinay Patrika contains a number of verses expressing a deep bond between the writer and the place. Tulsidas has also spent a long period of his life in Chitrakoot where he continually worshipped Lord Ram and craved for his 'darshan'. Rahim, an eminent poet and a friend of Tulsidas, had also spent his time in Chitrakoot. Also known as Abdur Rahim Khankhana, he was a saint, soldier, statesmen, scholar and poet and was one amongst the Nav-Ratnas of Akbar
. He also took refuge in Chitrakoot for a brief period of time. Beetak literature of the Pranami sect states that Mahamati Prannath who was a saint and poet had written two books Bara Kayamatnama and Kayamatnama in this place.
The place attained the status of the district of Uttar Pradesh on 6th May 1997 with the name Chhatrapati Shahuji Mahraj- Nager and constituted Mau and Karwi Tehsils. This was carved out of Banda district
. Later on 4th September 1998 the name of the district was changed to Chirakoot.