Nandurbar, with 41,055 inhabitants in 1961, is the headquarters of the taluka of the same name, about 51.50 km. (32 miles) north-west of Dhulia. the district headquarters. It is one of the oldest towns in Khandesh. The laying out of the Tapi valley railway line, on which Nandurbar is situated, has stimulated its trade and commerce. It is perhaps one of the biggest markets for chillis in Maharashtra. Commodities like tur, udid, mug.
ambadi. til oil and timber are sent to places like Bombay, Ahmedabad. Surat. etc. The town has an agricultural produce market committee and many small scale industries.
Nandigriha, mentioned in Kanheri Cave Inscription of the third century is identified with modem Nandurbar. According
to a local story it was founded by Nand, a Gavali Raja and remained in the
hands of his family till the advent of the Muslims, whose leader Samin Moin-ud-din Chisti, helped by the saint Sayyad Sadat Pir. commonly known as Sayyad Ala-ud-din Pir. defeated the Gavali kings and wrested it from them. [In
the batik, the Gavli prince engaging in personal conflict with the saint struck oft" his head. The headless body continued to fight and the Hindu army seized with a panic fled. The trunk then picked up the head and led the victorious army to a neighbouring hill, where the earth parted and swallowed it. Mr.J. Pollen. C. S.] Ibn Batuta who visited Nandurbar about the middle of the 14th century (1342) mentions it as a place inhabited
by the Marathas. [Yules Cathay. II 415.] Malik Raja, the) first of the Faruqi dynasty, captured Nandurbar along with Sultanpur in 1370 but was soon forced to retire to Thalner by Sultan Muzaffar Shalt of Gujarat who rapidly marched against him. [Briggs Ferishta. IV, 283.]
In 1429. the Chief of Jalvara, a fugitive from Gujarat plundered Nandurbar with the aid of Malik Nasir and a small force which, he had raised to release his countrv. [Ibid 239.] Muhammad Shall III on ascending the throne of Gujarat in 1536 made over Nandurbar and Sultanpur to Mubarak Khan Faruqi as promised when in confinement at Asirgad [Ibid II. 315.] In the confusion and instability that followed Muhammad's death these two places were invaded and taken by Changix Khan of Gujarat. But shortly after he had to give them up. At the close of the century these two sirkars were taken from Khandesh and made over to Malva by Akbar when he- came in possession of Khandesh. The Ain-i-Akbari of Abul Fazl mentions the sirkar of Nandurbar as measuring 859,604 bighas (644.730 acres) and yielding a yearly revenue of 50.162, 250 dams. It was very rich in musk melons and graphs. The transfer to Malva. it ever carried out. seems to have lasted for a short-time, for early in the seventeenth century
(1609), Nandurbar is mentioned among Khandesh towns as dealing in brass-ware, suits of armour, berries, drugs, pintados, or calicoes, cotton yarn, wool, and coarse cloth. In 1610 it is mentioned as a citv with a castle, pleasure house and many tombs. Halt a century later Tavernier described it as enjoying considerable prosperity and renowned for its grapes and melons. [Tavernier in Harris. II. 352.] In 1695 it was a large town and so rich that on one occasion, without any general pillage a sum of Rs. 1,700,000 was raised from the bankers. [Elliot VII. 363.]
At the opening of the 19th century the disasters that befell Khandesh affected Nandurbar also. It was more than half deserted in 1818 when it passed into the possession of the British. [A detachment under Major Jardie look possession of Nandurbar, a town of considerable size in
1818. Hamilton's Description of Hindcstan II, 100-101.] In 1820 it is mentioned as formerly of great importance enclosed by the ruins
of a wall 5.180 km.2 (two miles square) containing 500 houses and yielding a revenue of Rs. 12,000.[Malcolm's Cent in India. II 508.] Under the British, Nandurbar could never regain its original importance and prosperity.
Nandurbar had its own share in the Indian struggle for independence. It was here that during the Quit India Movement of 1942 Shirishkumar, a mere boy of 15 years, lost his life by a gun shot. A small memorial has been erected in memory of Shirishkumar in the square where he shed his blood.
The municipality was established in 1867. At present it has an area of 35.48 km.2 (13.7 sq. miles) under its jurisdiction. The administrative affairs arc looked after by a committee of 27 councillors presided over by the president.
Finance ; In 1963-64 income of the municipality derived from various sources like taxes, income from property and powers apart from taxation, grants and contributions and miscellaneous amounted to Rs. 9.79,442. As against this its expenditure stood at Ks. 9,27,952. The main items of expenditure were administration and collection charges, public health, safety, convenience and miscellaneous.
Health, Sanitation and Water Supply: Apart from private clinics and dispensaries the municipality conducts an allopathic dispensary with a maternity ward attached to it and another ayurvedic dispensary. Housing accommodation to the medical staff has been provided at a cost of Rs. 37,000. The veterinary dispensary of the town is looked after by the government. Adequate measures are taken
to prevent the outbreak of epidemic diseases. The town has only
stone-lined gutters with cesspools. The drainage scheme was implemented in the stages and has cost nearly Rs. 5,81,000. In 1932 was constructed the first water works supplying tap water to the inhabitants at a cost of Rs. 4,00,000. However, to meet the increased demand of the growing population another scheme
has been undertaken to augment the water supply. It is estimated to cost Rs. 7,00,000.
Education.- Primary education is compulsory. It has been entrusted to the care of the Zilla Parishad. The annual municipal contribution towards this end comes to Rs. 34,000. A high school managed by the municipality, costs the municipal exchequer approximately Rs. 87,343 annually. Besides, there are eight more privately managed high schools and an arts and commerce college. The town has one municipal managed and three privately conducted libraries.
Fire Service: Two well-equipped fire-fighters are maintained by the municipality for this purpose- Besides this fire extinguishers gas cylinders are also maintained.
Cremation and burial places are provided with sheds. These are maintained and used by the respective communities.
Being the headquarters of a taluka the town has mamlatdar's office, panchayat samiti office, revenue, civil and criminal courts, a police station, post and telegraph office, and a rest house.
Among the places of interest the old fort, a common mud structure
like those found in many Khandesh towns, deserves some attention. Unlike others it is a little larger and some-what stronger.
Inside here are two wells and outside on the western side are the remains A an old mosque, and ruined tower with a Persian inscription giving the date of its renovation. To the north of this fort is the jama mosque supposed to have been built with the stones of a desecrated Hindu temple. In front of it are two brick minarets. To the west of the fort are two more mosques, one known as dagdi mosque
because it is built of stone, supposed to be of the same antiquity as the Jama and the other Makka mosque. Outside the town to the south-east is an old shrine and mosque with an inscription stating hat it was built during the reign of Akbar in 1583 (951
H). On the Ranala road a little to the west of the town, is a very old mosque populary known as Aval Ghazi's mosque. Lying, to the south on the
tanks of the Panjhura river is another old mosque with a worn-out persian inscription on two tombs. There is also an idgah on the opposite bank of this river.
Of the Hindu temples the chief ones are, two devoted to Ram oeated near the rest house and one to Vitthal in the Desaipura part of he town. The town has several water ponds of which the chief are Desai known as Ciiambhar talav and Lal talav to the north; Wajya and Desai talavs to the west and the Pir talav
which is the biggest to the south. All these talav hold water during the greater part of the; ear and are generally used for washing purposes.