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History of Khambhat

Khambhat is also referred to as Cambay in many places. It is one of the towns that surround the urban agglomeration of the Khambhat Taluka, which is situated in the Anand district of Gujarat. Khambhat used to be one of the most important centers for business and trade. With time, the harbor started getting deposited with silt, and the trade was shifted to some other place. Khambhat is situated on the northern sides of the alluvial plain, almost towards the Khambhat Gulf. This place is very well-known for the tides. Khambhat is famous for a number of things which include the sutarfeni, kites, and halwasan, etc. Khambhat is also an excellent source of gas and oil.

Khambhat is famous for the ancient Harappan Craft, which is making of the agate bead. Khambhat has no deposits of stone at all, so these stones are collected from the Rajpipla hills, which is located almost two hundred meters away from this famous town of Khambhat. This is how the craft has managed to survive all these years.

Ancient History of Khambhat

Earlier, Khambhat was an extremely flourishing city, and it was reputed for the silk, gold stuff, and chintz. Al Masudi, who was an Arab traveler, visited this city in around 915 AD. This city was described as one of the most successful ports. Marco Polo called this city Cambaet as it was a very busy port. The two most important products of this region were fine buckram and Indigo. Leather and cotton were two important products that were exported from Cambay. Duarte Barbosa was a Portuguese explorer who visited Khambhat. He called the city Cambaia, around the sixteenth century. Barbosa describes this city as a very beautiful one, which is not only busy but also affluent. The merchants visited this city from all over the world.

The houses in Khambhat are generally built of blocks of stone, which indicates that the city used to be very rich at a certain point of time. Stone blocks were brought from long distances, and it was not easy to build these houses. There are also remains of the brick walls, which used to surround the town. The walls were also known to enclose the large water reservoirs and around three bazaars. On the south eastern side of the town, there are large ruins of all the subterranean temples and a number of other buildings. All the buildings are almost completely buried in the sand.

The Princely state of Khambhat

The town of Khambhat was known to be the capital of the state of Cambay. This state was an important princely state that was under the rules of the British. This state was the only one in Gujarat's Kaira Agency. This was known to have an area of around three hundred and fifty square miles. This state was founded in the year 1730 when the Mughal Empire had started getting dismembered. The Nawabs of the Mughal Empire were Mumin Khan’s descendant, who was an eminent ruler of the Mughals. He was known to be the last governor of the state of Gujarat. In the year 1742, Mumin Khan was known to defeat Nizam Khan, who was his brother-in-law. Nizam Khan used to be the governor of the town of Khambhat. After defeating him, Mumin Khan became the governor.

In the year 1780, the city of Cambay was seized by Goddard Richards and his army. Khambhat was again restored back in the year 1783 to Marathas. Later, the town was given over to the British. This was done by Peshwas in accordance with the treaty of 1803. Later, railway services were established in the year 1903.

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