Rayagada was a small village, habitate by Tribals i.e. the Kui(Kondha) tribe, prior to establishment of the Fort by fore fathers of Raja Bhairab Deb. The name of this  village prior to establishment of fort by forefathers of Raja Bhairab Dev is not know. However it appears, Raja brought various caste families i.e. Brahmanins, Goudos, Paikos, Karans, Dambo and Ghasi castes to perform legitimate duties of each caste inside the Fort. The above caste wise streets are still existing. Most of  these caste families appears to  have been brought from Ganjam and Gajapati Districts. The Rayagada, it appears was renamed by the Raja after establishment of the Fort. Raja means, “Roy” and Godo” means fort i.e. For of Raja. However it appears, the Ray Godo”  has been gradually changed by pronounce and spelling. For instant, for some years it was pronounced as “Rayaghada (By B.N.R. Railway) then changed on demand by public after independence to Rayagada and is continuing as such.

    It appears the Raja was attracted seeing the Natural Barriers which can obstruct in easy reach of enemy soliders, for instant the Deep and narrow flow of water of Jhanjabati Rivers towards South, speedily flowing water of Nagavali River with water fall “Hati Pathar” with high and steep mountains adjacent to Nagavali River with dense forest towards East and High and dense forest Mountains towards west of Rayagada, determined to establish the Fort of the State adjacent to Jhanabati River towards South  up to present Jagannath Temple, towards West and adjacent to Nagavali River  towards East up to “Rani Godo” i.e. at present known as Raniguda Village. The dilapidated walls are still seen at various places. Late Biswanath Deb was the last “Raja” of Rayagada State.

    One of the  legend reveals that the “Raja” Late Biswanath married 108 Ranis, but expired, issueless. The other lelgend was Raja Biswanath deb was very powerful and competent Raja. He expanded his State till Vizayanagaram and excavated a lake at Bobili (A.P) and named it after his Late father as Bhairab Sagar, which is still called in this name. He established Army Baracks to safe Guard the State at Kailashkota Kumbhikota and at Champikota towards east, west and sough of his State respectively.

    Regarding his death, one legend says he had natural death, but the other version is that he was  killed in a battle and his dead body was cremated  insde the campus of the Fort and all his 108 Ranis jumped into the funeral pile one after one as “Sati” declaring their curse that hereafter there  will be no Raja and Rule the State from here (Fort). Thereafter there is / was no Raja and the estate merged with Jeypore estate. The Sati Kundali is still existing just north side of  the Maa Majhighariani Temple.

Incarnate of Maa Majhighariani

After death of Late Raja Biswanath Deb, the Fort was abandoned and in long run, comjpletely collapsed for want of proper maintenance. Due to erosion of soil and flow of heavy rain water of catchment of the “Fort” a Jholla was formed and a perennial stream was created, which is now called “Kiajharan”. The Fort covered with wild tree Growth. After few century the “Skhakti” incarnate in the  central house of the Fort and informed Raja of Jeypore in dream of her incarnation. After this Dream Jeypore Raja arranged for Puja and other routines engaging “Paiko Caste” Pujak  who are now conducting puja and other rituals of the Maa. The  Pujaris were rehabilitated at Village “Beheraguda” nearer to present temple of Maa Majhi Ghariani.

    Since  the “Shakti” incarnate in the centre house of dilapidated Fort under a Neem Tree, the “Shakti” was named as Majhi Ghairiani, means the “Shakti of Central House”. The Jeypore Maharaja provided funds for Puja and expenses for other festivals till the estate was abolished in the year 1955. The Anchala Adhiklari who was subsequently re-designated  as Tahasildar, Rayagada was looking after the :Puja and festivals of the Maa till formation of Trust Board. The Trust Board was constituted as per Orissa Hindu religious Endowment Act  and is looking its management from the year…1990………….. The Tahasildar, Ryagada is one of the nominated Trust Members of the Board.

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