RAJGIR (originally known as GIRIVRAJ) is a city and a notified area
Nalanda district in the Indian state of
Bihar . The city of Rajgir
Pali : Rājagaha; Hindi : राजगृह)
was the first capital of the kingdom of
Magadha , a state that would
eventually evolve into the
Mauryan Empire. Its date of origin is
unknown, although ceramics dating to about 1000 BC have been found in
the city. This area is also notable in
Buddhism as one
of the favorite places for Lord
Gautama Buddha and the
well known "Atanatiya" conference was held at Vulture\'s Peak
Rajgir is connected to
Bakhtiarpur by rail and road.
Bakhtiarpur lies midway between
Mokameh . Road access is by
NH 30A to
Bakhtiarpur and NH 31 towards south to reach
Bihar Sharif .
Mokameh NH 31 to
Bihar Sharif. From there, NH 82 will leads to
Rajgir is around 100 KM from both
Patna and Mokameh. It is
located in a green valley surrounded by rocky hills,
Rajgir hills . A
Indian Railways train
Shramjeevi Express connects
the Indian capital
New Delhi .
* 1 History
* 2 Geography and climate
* 3 Notable places
* 4 Demographics
* 5 Transportation
* 6 Sports
* 7 Picture gallery
* 8 See also
* 9 References
* 10 External links
Rajgir came from Rājagṛiha 'house of the king' or "royal
house", or the word rajgir might have its origin in its plain literal
meaning, "royal mountain". It was the ancient capital city of the
Magadha kings until the 5th century BC when
Udayin (460-440 BC), son
of Ajatshatru, moved the capital to
Pataliputra . In those days, it
was called Rajgrih, which translates as 'the home of Royalty'.
Shishunaga dynasty in 413 BCE with
Rajgir as its
initial capital before it was moved to Pataliputra.
Rajgir is also famous for its association with
Mauryan dynasty Kings
Ajatashatru kept his father Bimbsara in
captivity here. The sources do not agree which of the
Buddha 's royal
Ajatashatru , was responsible for its
Ajatashatru is also credited with moving the capital to
Patna ). Buddha's cave, Griddhakuta Hill,
Mahabharata calls it Girivraja and recount the story of its
king, Jarasandha, and his battle with the
Pandava brothers and their
Jarasandha who hailed from this place, had been
Krishna 17 times. The 18th time
Krishna left the
battlefield without fighting. Because of this
Krishna is also called
'ranachorh' (one who has left the battlefield).
a wrestling match between
Bhima (one of the Pandavas) and Jarasandha,
the then king of Magadha.
Jarasandha was invincible as his body could
rejoin any dismembered limbs. According to the legend, Bhim split
Jarasandha into two and threw the two halves facing opposite to each
other so that they could not join. There is a famous Jarasandha's
Akhara (place where martial arts are practiced). It is also mentioned
Buddhist scriptures, which give a series of place-names,
but without geographical context. The attempt to locate these places
is based largely on reference to them and to other locations in the
works of Chinese
Buddhist pilgrims, particularly
It is on the basis of
Xuanzang in particular that the site is divided
into Old and New Rajgir. The former lies within a valley and is
surrounded by low-lying hills,
Rajgir hills . It is defined by an
earthen embankment (the Inner Fortification), with which is associated
the Outer Fortification, a complex of cyclopean walls that runs (with
large breaks) along the crest of the hills. New
Rajgir is defined by
another, larger, embankment outside the northern entrance of the
valley and next to the modern town. It was here that Gautama Buddha
spent several months meditating, and preaching at Gridhra-kuta,
(\'Hill of the Vultures\') . He also delivered some of his famous
sermons and initiated king
Magadha and countless others
to Buddhism. On one of the hills is the
Saptparni cave where the First
Buddhist Council was held under the leadership of
Maha Kassapa .
It is sacred to the memory of the founders of both the religions:
Buddhism and associated with both the historical Mahavira
Mahavira , 24th
Tirthankara spent fourteen years of his life at
Rajgir and Nalanda, spending Chaturmas (i.e. 4 months of the rainy
season) at a single place in
Rajgir (Rajgruhi) and the rest in the
places in the vicinity. It was the capital of one of his
Shravaks(follower) King Shrenik. Thus
Rajgir is a very important
religious place for Jains .The twentieth
Jain tirthankara, Munisuvrata
is supposed to have been born here.An ancient temple(about 1200 years
old) dedicated to Munisuvrat bhagwan is also present here along with
many other jain temples.This temple is also a place for four
Kalyanakas of Bhagwan Munisuvratnath.
GEOGRAPHY AND CLIMATE
Rajgir hills from
Jarasandha 's Akhara
The city was in a valley surrounded by seven hills: Vaibhara, Ratna,
Saila, Sona, Udaya, Chhatha, and Vipula.
Rajgir has also developed as a health and winter resort due to its
warm water ponds. These baths are said to contain some medicinal
properties that help in the cure of many skin diseases. .Another
attraction of the region is the ropeway that leads uphill to the
Vishwa Shanti Stupa (Peace Pagoda), Makhdoom Kund and monasteries
built by Japanese devotees of the
Buddha on top of the Ratnagiri
Temperature: maximum 44 °C, minimum 20 °C. Winter: maximum 28 °C,
minimum 6 °C
Rainfall: 1,860 mm (mid-June to mid-September)
Dry/warm season: October to March
THE FOUR MAIN SITES
FOUR ADDITIONAL SITES
Son Bhandar cave with 3-4 century AD
Jain images and
The renowned Son Bhandar Caves is situated at Rajgir, Nalanda
Bihar state. Son Bhandar group of caves has two caves
known as eastern and western cave. Son bhandar caves are concerned
Jainism and considered to belong to 3-4 century AD.
These caves were first inspected by Cunninghum and he concluded to
have analogy with
Saptaparni Cave of
Buddhism creed. After Cunninghum
several scholars visited this place and some had opinion to concern
with Buddhism. After some time all
Buddhism connections were refused
because of an inscription found on the southern wall of a cave.
According to this inscription these caves were built by inspiration
Jain Muni Vair for
Jain ascetics. Sculptures of Teerthankaras
were also carved in these caves. From architectural aspect; these
caves are analogous to Nagarjuni cave and
Barabar Caves caves of
Mauryan era. Therefore, it can be concluded that construction time
should not be much differ from above mentioned caves.
These caves should be related to
Digambar sect of
Jainism as Xuanzang
wrote in his book about Vaibhar Hill of
Rajgir that the place was
Jain monks for meditation purpose. After some
centuries these caves were converted by
Hindus as Lord Vishnu
sculpture was also found from mound of a cave.
Rajgir has been a very important place in
Jainism , as
capital to many empires. The main tourist attractions include the
ancient city walls from
Ajatshatru 's period, the
Bimbisar 's Jail,
Jarasandh 's Akhara, Gridhra-kuta, (\'Hill of the Vultures\') ,
Sonabhandara cave and the
Jain temples on the five peaks.
Rajgir is famous for its hot water springs, locally known as
Brahmakund, a sacred place for
Hindus . Another major attraction is
the peace pagoda ,
Vishwa Shanti Stupa , built in 1969, one of the 80
peace pagodas in the world, to spread the message of peace and
non-violence. The rope-way that leads to it is another attraction.
The Japanese temple is beside the Venu Vana . Venu Vana is an
artificial forest, where one can enjoy Eternal peace, and meditate.And
famous Makhdoom Kund . Sri Ramakrishna Math is a non-political
spiritual organization which have been engaged in various forms of
humanitarians, social service activities. Bamboo Grove in Venu
Rajgir Heritage Museum is another place of Interest, recently
inaugurated by CM
Nitish Kumar .
As of the 2011
India census ,
Rajgir had a population of 41,587 .
Males constitute 53% of the population and females 47%.
Rajgir has an
average literacy rate of 52%, lower than the national average of
59.5%: male literacy is 61%, and female literacy is 41%. In Rajgir,
19% of the population is under 6 years of age.But now the literacy
Rajgir is (increasing from 2007) about 70%.
Bihar State Tourism Development Corporation provides travel facility
from state capital
Patna to visit Bodh circuit (
Bodhgaya , Rajgir,
Nalanda , Vaishali ,
Sarnath ), Jain
Pawapuri ) and Sikh Circuit in Bihar.
* AIR: The nearest is
Gaya International Airport , Gaya which is 78
km which is connected to International Destinations like
Columbo , etc. Another airport is at
Patna 101 km. Air India, Indigo,
Jet Airways and Go Air connect
Rajgir railway station connects the city to other parts of
country yet the nearest convenient railhead is at Gaya Junction
railway station 78 km. The Bakhtiyarpur-Gaya line provides improved
rail connectivity to many places.
Rajgir is connected by road to
Patna - 110 km,
Nalanda - 12
km, Gaya - 78 km,
Pawapuri - 38 km,
Bihar Sharif - 25 km, etc.
* BUS: Regular buses are available from all the above said points to
* LOCAL TRANSPORT: Taxis and Buses and Tongas are available.
Nalanda International Cricket Stadium is a proposed cricket stadium
in the city. In 2013, it was announced by the Chief Minister of Bihar
Nitish Kumar that an international cricket stadium will be constructed
Nalanda district . After completion the
stadium will home of
Bihar cricket team .
Buddhist monks meditating on Vulture's Peak
Boar's Cave, Rajgir.
Shri Mahavir Swami Shwetamber Temple
Vulture's Peak, view from a nearby hill. The place where was the
"Atanatiya" conference held.
Remains of the monastery called Jivakambavana
Vishwa Shanti Stupa
Nalanda University at Rajgir
* Legendary kings of
* ^ "पत्रांक-213 : राजगीर
क्षेत्रीय आयोजना क्षेत्र
एवं बोधगया आयोजना क्षेत्र
के सीमांकन एवं घोषणा" (PDF). Urban
Development Housing Dept., Government of Bihar, Patna. 15 April 2015.
Retrieved 18 May 2015.
* ^ "
India Search details". censusindia.gov.in. Retrieved
10 May 2015.
Dharma ka Maulik Itihas Part-1, Ed. Acharyashri Hastimalji
Maharaj, 1971 p. 739-742
* ^ W. Vivian De Thabrew (2013). Monuments and Temples of Orthodox
India and Sri Lanka. AuthorHouse. p. 35. Retrieved 29
* ^ See Bhagavata Purana, 10.70.30
* ^ Jainism: A Pictorial Guide to the Religion of Non-violence,
Kurt Titze, Klaus Bruhn, Motilal Banarsidass Publ. 1998, p. 203
* ^ A B History behind Son Bhandar cave of Rajgir. –
* ^ Middle Land, Middle Way: A Pilgrim's Guide to the
Shravasti Dhammika ,
Buddhist Publication Society, 1992 p. 98
* ^ "
Rajgir Heritage Museum inaugurated by CM Nitish Kumar".
Retrieved 8 September 2013.
* ^ "
India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including
cities, villages and towns (Provisional)".
Census Commission of India.
Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01.
* ^ Land in
Rajgir for cricket stadium on
Bihar to construct world class cricket stadium
Bihar government plans world-class stadium
Bihar to construct world class cricket stadium
* ^ This time, NDA plans big fight in Bihar\'s \'Rae Bareli\'
Bihar state tourism development corporation - Rajgir
* Places to visit in Rajgir
Cities and towns in