PLACES

MORSHI TAHSIL

Morsi Tahsil, a tahsil of the Amravati district, lying between 2112' and 2134' N. 7748' and 7829' E. has an area of 1613.57 km2 (623 square miles). It contains 332 villages and towns. Of these the entire village of Ambhori is under forests. The tahsil is a prolongation of the rich alluvial plain which occupies the valley of Berar and its capabilities for the production of cotton and cereals are considerable, although a slight falling-off is perceptible from the agricultural point of view both in the formation of surface and the nature of the soils. The former is more undulating than that presented by the Acalpur plain and the latter are more shallow and more varied in the quality than the soils of Acalpur. The tahsil lies in the fertile valley of the Wardha river which bounds it on the east and south-east, but a narrow strip along its north-western border occupies the lower slopes of the Satpuda hills. The Amravati and Acalpur tahsils bound it on the south and west, respectively. On the north lies the Betul district; to the east and south the Chindvada, Nagpur and Wardha districts. The Wardha river was previously taken as the boundary between the Madhya Prades and Berar. It is to this fact that the tahsil owes its peculiar shape, the river approaching so near to the hills in the vicinity of Morsi as almost to cut it into two portions. Some parts of the country are fairly well wooded, and the only considerable forest reserves of the Amravati Division (if we except Cirodi), arc in the eastern half of this tahsil. The western part is bare and very dreary, and in respect of scenery the tahsil compares unfavourably with Acalpur. The climate is good, although of course exceedingly hot in the hot weather. In the eastern portion of the tahsil water is near the surface and can be raised without much difficulty for purposes of irrigation. Well irrigation is becoming popular with the villagers and at present (1963), 152 electric pumping sets have been installed on the wells to irrigate the land. In addition dams have been built across Pak nalla, Dabheri and Bhendi tanks and thus the land is fed with water which has gone a long way towards bringing hitherto dry land under irrigation. The gross irrigated area at the end of 1962-63 stood at approximately 4021.650 hectares (9930 acres). Of the river system which drains the tahsil the Wardha is the main channel, and it supplies water to villagers along the border for a distance of more than 80 km. (50 miles). Among rivers of less importance are the Mandu in the western portion of the tashil and the Cudamani, Kumbhi and Bel in the east. These rivers though of no great length contain considerable supplies of water for the greater part of the year. Streams in the neighbourhood of the hills hardly worthy of the name of rivers are much used for irrigation, the rapid fall of the beds of these streams affording facilities for drawing off the water on erection of temporary dams. In no other part of Berar is the water from streams utilized as it is in Morsi and the supply here is in some cases perennial, admitting of the cultivation of sugarcane and turmeric without the assistance of well water. It is probable that there is room for a very large extension of wet cultivation in this tahsil. The possibility of artesian wells has also been mooted.

Population.

The total population of the tahsil in 1961 was 196,705 as against 160,863 in 1951. As in other tahsils of Amravati and throughout the whole of Vidarbha region the population is mainly agricultural. The tahsil contains the three towns of Morsi, Warud and Sendurjana all having separate municipalities and 12 villages whose population exceeds 2,000.

Cotton, jovar, wheat and tur are the principal crops of the tahsil. The area under orange and chilli plantation and groundnut cultivation is rapidly increasing and in years to come will have to be ranked among the chief crops of the tahsil. The area under various crops in 1962-63 was as below: Cotton 60,718410 hectares (149,922 acres); jovar 35.061.255 hectares (86,571 acres); wheat 3,125.385 hectares (7,717 acres); groundnut 2,589.975 hectares (6,395 acres) and orange 1,716 hectares (4,238 acres). Rice is also cultivated with success but the area under paddy fields is negligible so as to warrant any mention. Turmeric thrives well particularly in irrigated, land. The irrigation by channels from. streams is of some importance in Morsi. The construction of temporary dams across the streams at the close of the monsoon rains is easily and cheaply effected and in some cases a perennial supply of water can be turned on to the garden lands and valuable crops can be grown at a minimum of labour and cost.

In 1962-63, the demand of land revenue excluding cesses amounted to Rs. 525,388. For purposes of land records the tahsil has been divided into four Revenue Inspectors' Circles with headquarters at Morsi, Rithpur, Jarud and Pusla.

Miscellaneous.

The tahsil is now divided into two Development Blocks viz., Warud and Morsi each having the office of the Pancayat Samiti. There are in the tahsil four police stations each under a Sub-Inspector at Morsi, Sirkhed, Warud, and Benoda. In respect of communications the tahsil is extremely well served, the Amravati-Wardha road running along its whole length.

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