Krishna District gets its name from the holy river Krishna, the third largest river that flows in India. The river Krishna originates near Mahabaleswar (Maharastra) and joins the Bay of Bengal near Hamsaladevi Village in the district.
Krishna district is considered the kernel of Telugu Culture and is the birth place of the famous Indian classical dance form – Kuchipudi. The dialect of Telugu spoken in Krishna is widely considered to be the standard form of Telugu.
The history of this region dates back to 2nd century BC. The area was ruled by the Satavahanas (230 BC – 227 AD); Pallavas (340 AD – 500 AD), Chalukyas (615 AD – 1070 AD) and later by Cholas, Kakatiyas and Reddy dynasty. The ruins of the fort at Kondapalli hail back to Reddy Kingdom. Subsequently, the area came under the Vijayanagara Empire. The temple in Srikakulam Village was built by the Vijayanagara Kings. The area then passed on to the Qutub Shahis and later to the Nizams. The office of the two important ministers during the Qutub Shahi rule – Madanna and Akkana –was in Vijayawada due to their reverence towards Goddess Kanaka Durga. The rulers from Golconda were the first to patronise European traders to establish themselves in Masulipatnam (now Machilipatnam). The Portuguese may have been the earliest, followed by the Dutch and the English.
In the year 1611, the English founded their settlement at Masulipatnam, which was their headquarters until they finally moved to Madras in 1641. In 1761, in return for supporting Nizam Ali Khan in his succession to Golconda, the English secured their first division at Masulipatnam from the Nizams.
Initially, the division was administered by a Chief and a Council at Masulipatnam. In 1794, Collectors, directly responsible to the Board of Revenue were appointed at Masulipatnam, making Krishna collectorate, one among the oldest Collectorates in the Country.
Machilipatnam is the administrative headquarters of Krishna district. Vijayawada is the biggest city in the district (third in the state) and a commercial centre.
The population of Krishna District is 45.17 lakhs (2011 Census), making it the 34th in India and 4th in AP. The population density is 519 per sq Kms (AP: 308 per sq km; India: 382 per sq km). Krishna has a gender ratio of 997 women for 1000 males (AP: 992 per 1000; India: 940 per 1000) and a literacy rate of 74.37 percent. (AP: 67.66%; India: 74.04%). Agriculture is the main occupation of the people in our district.
The district is spread over 8,727 Sq.kms and is divided into upland and delta area. The district consists of 50 Mandals in four Revenue Divisions viz., Bandar, Vijayawada, Gudivada, and Nuzvid. The main source of Irrigation in upland is tanks. It is being benefited by the water of Nagarjuna Sagar also. The delta land is being irrigated by canals of river Krishna.
Kolleru Lake, one of India’s most ecologically significant wetlands lies partly within the district .
The Vijayawada Thermal Power Station at Ibrahimpatnam; KCP Sugar Factory at Vuyyuru and Bharat Electrical Limited in Machilipatnam are the main industries in the district.
Krishna district is the home of several important personalities in all walks of life.
- Siddhendra Yogi – Architect of Kuchipudi
- Mahakavi Kshetrayya – Prolific Telugu poet
- Pingali Venkayya – Designer of India National Flag.
- Dr. Bhogaraju Pattabhi Sitaramayya – Founder of Andhra Bank.
- Gudipati Venkatachalam – Telugu writer
- Viswanadha Satyanarayana – Telugu writer
- Kanuri Lakshmana Rao – Indian engineer and a Padma Bhushan awardee
- Ghantasal Venkateswara Rao – Famous Telugu playback Singer
- NT Rama Rao – Founder of Telugu Desam Party
- Akkineni Nageswara Rao – Famous Telugu Cine Artist.
- Vempati China Satyam – Kuchipudi Dance promoter
- Chetan Anand – National Badminton Champion
- Koneru Humpy – World Number 2 in Women’s Chess
Krishna is also home to Bandar Laddu, Chilakalapudi Bangaram(Imitation Jewellery), Kondapalli Toys, Nuzvid mangoes, Pedana Kalamkari (Block printed Cotton textiles) and Bandar Halwa.
Vijayawada translates to mean “place of victory”. According to the legends, Arjuna performed penance on these hills to appease Lord Shiva, who appeared before him and bestowed him with the prized weapon ‘Pasupathasthra’. Also Goddess Durga is believed to have rested here after slaying the wicked demon Mahishasura in a fierce battle. The famous Kanaka Durga shrine located on top of the hills and overlooking river Krishna, is thronged by hundreds of devotees daily.
Prakasam Barrage at Vijayawada across Krishna River was constructed in 1957 with Rs. 3.57 crores. It caters the needs of Agriculture in Krishna, Guntur and West Godavari districts.