Bithoor is around 27 kilometers (17 miles) north of Kanpur. According to the Puraans (holy scriptures in Hinduism) it is at Bithoor that Lord Brahma commenced the creation of the mankind. It is thus also referred to as Brahmavarta (seat of Brahma) and considered to be the center of Universe (Brahmaan), according to the Puraans. Historically, Bithoor has been closely associated with the Indian rebellion of 1857 for independence. Nana Sahib, one of the leaders of the rebellion had his headquarters here, and at one point it was also home to Lakshmi Bai - the Rani of Jhansi - the most well known of all characters associated with the rebellion. Other leaders of the rebellion like Baji Rao Peshwa, Dhudu Pant, Tatya Tope were also associated with Bithoor.
Unlike other holy places in India only Bithoor has 4 names - Utpalaranya, Brahashmatipuri, Brahmavarta, and Bithoor is the latest name. It is the most sacred of all nine aaranya mentioned in the ancient Hindu scriptures. According to them, in Satyug, Tretayug and Dvaparyug there were Gods and Goddesses living on the earth, however in the present Yug - the Kaliyug, Ganga is the only Goddess that is present in its visible form (साक्षात रूप). The other Gods and Goddesses have gone to their original seats in the realms of the cosmos.