1 Oct 2019

Renaming of Hyderabad Karnataka as Kalyana Karnataka5 min read

Source: The Hindu

Manifest pedagogy:The integration of princely states into Indian Union forms an interesting episode in Indian history. They can ask a broad based question on the entire episode and Sardar Vallabhai patel’s role or the specific issue of integration of Hyderabad or Jammu and Kashmir.With the removal of article 370 in the recent months the historical underpinnings of the integration of princely states is important. 

In news: The Chief Minister of Karnataka has recently renamed Hyderabad Karnataka as Kalyana Karnataka.

Placing it in syllabus: Karnataka history (explicitly mentioned)


  • Kalyani Chalukyas empire extent
  • Hyderabad princely state’s geographical extent
  • Hyderabad princely state integration into India
  • Constitutional provisions for Hyderabad Karnataka

Content: On September 17, which commemorates the day when Commander in Chief of the Nizam Army got surrendered to the Indian Army, Karnataka CM renamed Hyderabad-Karnataka region as “Kalyana Karnataka”. The new name is considered a perfect tribute to the invaluable contribution of 12th Century social reformers.

Basavanna, the prominent face of the Sharana movement, had hosted like-minded thinkers in Kalyana kingdom, which had witnessed the mystics and saints and poets. Hence, Kalyana became the epicentre of Bhakti (Devotion) movement and Vachana Sahitya.

Kalyani Chalukyas empire extent and capital:

  • The Western Chalukya Empire also called Kalyani Chalukyas ruled most of the western Deccan, South India, between the 10th and 12th centuries.
  • It’s capital was Kalyani, today’s Basavakalyan in modern Bidar District of Karnataka state.
  • Prior to the rise of these Chalukyas, the Rashtrakuta empire of Manyakheta controlled this region.
  • In 973, Tailapa II, a feudatory of the Rashtrakuta Dynasty ruling from Bijapur region defeated his overlords and made Manyakheta his capital.
  • The dynasty quickly rose to power and grew into an empire under Someshvara I who moved the capital to Kalyani.
  • It was a huge kingdom stretching from Kaveri to Narmada River.
  • It consisted of many parts of Karnataka, Andhrapradesh and Maharashtra.

The kingdom was divided into provinces such as Banavasi,  Nolambavadi, Gangavadi each name including the number of villages under its jurisdiction. The larger provinces were called ‘mandalas’ with appropriate subdivisions. 

These regions were ruled by the representatives of the Emperor who enjoyed hereditary powers. Village was the smallest unit and it was looked after by a community of elders called ‘mahajanas’ and representatives of various trades. 

Mandalas -> Nadu -> Kampana (group of villages) -> Bada (village)

Hyderabad princely state geographical extent:

  • Hyderabad and Berar under the Nizams, was the largest princely state in the British Raj.
  • Hyderabad state was located in the south-central Indian subcontinent from 1724 until 1948, ruled by a hereditary Nizam who was Muslim.
  • It was founded by Nizam al-Mulk (Asaf Jah) in 1724. 
  • He founded the dynasty of the nizams (rulers) of Hyderabad.
  • In 1767, Nizam Ali accepted British ascendancy in Hyderabad by the Treaty of Masulipatam (1768). 
  • In 1795, Nizam Ali Khan lost some of his own territories, including parts of Berar, to the Marathas.
  • Surrounded, except in the west, by territory owned by or dependent upon the British, Nizam Ali Khan in 1798 was forced to enter into subsidiary alliance under British.
  • At the time of independence, administratively, Hyderabad State was made up of sixteen districts, grouped into four divisions:
    • Aurangabad Division, 
    • Gulbarga Division, 
    • Gulshanabad Division or Medak Division, 
    • Warangal Division

Hyderabad princely state integration into India:

When the Indian subcontinent was partitioned in 1947, the ruling nizam Osman Ali Khan Asaf Jah VII,  chose to resume independent status rather than joining India. He hoped to maintain this with an irregular army recruited from the Muslim aristocracy, known as the Razakars.

On November 29, 1947, he signed a standstill agreement with India to last one year and Indian troops were withdrawn. However, with the rise of militant razakars, India found it necessary to station Indian troops and invaded the state on September 13th, 1948. 

Subsequently, the Nizam signed an instrument of accession, joining India. After a period of military and provisional civil government, a popular ministry and legislature were set up in the state in March 1952. On November 1, 1956, the state of Hyderabad ceased to exist administratively. 

It was divided along linguistic lines to form the state of Andhra Pradesh, which took the Telangana districts. In 2014 the Telangana districts (including Hyderabad) were split off from Andhra Pradesh to form the independent state of Telangana.

People’s movement (Razakar suppression):

Despite the repression unleashed against the democratic movement by the Nizam, through the agency of the Razakars, the volunteer army of the Majlis Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen commanded by Kasim Razvi, led the democratic movement which gained momentum after August 15, 1947.

It was the demand for merger with the Indian Union that united the different political streams that comprised the anti-Nizam front. The entry of the Indian Army into Hyderabad on September 13, 1948, was a response to this demand.

In Hyderabad, where each party celebrated ‘Liberation Day’ on their own, the BJP launched an offensive against those who can rightfully claim the political legacy of the anti-Nizam struggle – the secular parties.

In Telangana, the struggle against the Nizam and the feudal regime which propped him was led by the Communists and the Andhra Mahasabha. The people organised and built a powerful militia comprising 10,000 village squad members and about 2,000 regular guerilla squads.

In the Kannada and Marathi-speaking parts of Hyderabad state it was the Arya Samaj under Swami Ramanand Tirth led anti-Nizam movement. The message of the Arya Samaj – “India for Indians. Except Hindus, all are foreigners on the soil of Hindustan”, gave needed courage to the Hindus to oust the rule of Nizam and face the atrocities of the Razakars.

The Congress leaders of the Hyderabad Karnataka region organised border camps from where armed attacks were carried out against the Razakars and took over the administration of some areas. The nationalist workers were given training by soldiers who belonged to the erstwhile Indian National Army.

Operation Polo:

In June 1948, when Lord Mountbatten proposed the Heads of Agreement Deal, it gave Hyderabad the status of an autonomous dominion under India. India was ready to sign the deal and did so but the Nizam refused on the grounds that he wanted complete independence or the status of dominion under the British Commonwealth of Nations.

The chaos, the unclear negotiations and rumours that Hyderabad was arming itself with support from the Portuguese administration in Goa and Pakistan, led to communal clashes and added to the tension.

Sardar Patel described the idea of an independent Hyderabad as “an ulcer in the heart of India which needed to be removed surgically.” This was when talks between India and Hyderabad started and India decided to annex Hyderabad. This operation was named “Operation Polo” (also referred to as “Operation Caterpillar”).

It began on September 13 and lasted for 5 days and the Indian Army took over a powerful state and Hyderabad was attached to India. A state of Emergency was declared. 

Constitutional provisions for Hyderabad Karnataka:

The Hyderabad – Karnataka region includes the 6 backward districts of Northern Karnataka: Gulbarga, Bidar, Raichur, Koppal, Yadgir and Bellary.

Article 371-J which provided for special provisions for the Hyderabad-Karnataka region of the state of Karnataka was inserted in the Constitution by the 98th Constitutional Amendment Act of 2012.

Under Article 371-J, the President is empowered to provide that the Governor of Karnataka would have special responsibility for –

  1. The establishment of a separate development board for Hyderabad-Karnataka region.
  2. Making a provision that a report on the working of the board would be placed every year before the State Legislative Assembly.
  3. The equitable allocation of funds for developmental expenditure over the region.
  4. The reservation of seats in educational and vocational training institutions in the region for students who belong to the region.
  5. The reservation in state government posts in the region for persons who belong to the region.

The special provisions aim to establish an institutional mechanism for equitable allocation of funds to meet the development needs over the region, as well as to enhance human resources and promote employment from the region by providing for local cadres in service.

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