The Borghat Historical and Archaeological Remains

Borghat is a beautiful little vil lage situated on the East bank of the blue Myntdu river in the south of the Jaintia Hills District at about 80 Km. or so from Jowai. The navigability of the Myntdu River with other parts of the Surma Valley up to this point (Ghat) had created the place into a prospective commercial depot where traders from the hills and the plains of the vast Jaintia Kingdom could meet for commercial transaction, etc. Further, the place also situated midway between Jaintiapur, the plain capital and Sutnga, the Hill capital of the kingdom.

The commercial and the strategical importance of the place had prompted the then mighty Jaintia Raja Borkuhain or U Bor Singh from whom the name of the place is said to have derived to convert it into the kingdom's Sub-Headquarters and adorned it with palace, temple, tanks and other structural splendours which are to us now of historical and archaeological value and importance.

However, with the transfer of the Hills Capital from Sutnga to Nartiang sometimes during the 2nd or the 3rd quarters of the 16th century, the importance of Borghat had been replaced by that of Syndai and the former had lost of its political importance, though it continued to be still a flourishing market till the time of partition in 1947. As a pointer to the then glory of the village, the following remains are still being observed and seen.

  1. The Ruin Royal Palace:
    This structure situated on the east bank of the River Myntdu just in the south of the present Borghat village under the shades of big banyan trees, but all in ruins and debris. The ruins was perhaps due to the longevity of time. But the important factor was most probably due to the damage caused by the havoc of the Myntdu river during the rainy season, especially when the Myntdu river had changed its course towards the east.
  2. The Royal Temple :
    This temple is a very simple and auster looking Bengal type made of baked brickbats and situated right in the heart of the present Borghat village. The temple proper is 3.00 x 8.00 metres enclosed on all sides by a rectangular brick walls of 100 metres x 70 metres with an entrance provided at the south. Some portion of the walls are still in tact while the southern portions are in a dilapidating state. The temple proper is still standing and in good shape where prayer/ pujas are still being offered by some casual visitors. However on account of the unavailability of written records the builder and the date of the temple and other structures are not definitely known. But tradition states that the temple and the rest of the structures were built during the reign of U Raja Bor Singh who had embraced Hinduism and had shifted his principal Headquarters from Sutnga to Jaintiapur sometime during the last quarters of the 15th century and the first quarters of the 16th century. The temple was mainly constructed for the purpose of royal worship. However, with the fall of the Sutnga dynasty in 1855 A.D. the temple, the palace and other structures were almost abandoned except for few casual visitors and sweet memory of the lost glory of Borghat.
  3. The Umkoi Parang :
    This is ceremonial tank situated at about 250 metres east of the temple by the side of a stream on the left side of the Borghat-Khliehriat road. The tank is dug out on the earth under the command of the Parang Clan for the purpose of the ceremonial cleaning of the Rajas after the performance of ritual human sacrifice.