GaN epilayers were grown on m-plane (10-10) sapphire substrates using plasma assisted molecular beam epitaxy. Impact of nitridation on structural and optical properties of GaN film was investigated. The film grown on a nitridated surface resulted in a nonpolar (10-10) orientation while without nitridation caused a semipolar (11-22) orientation. The high resolution X-ray diffraction studies confirmed the orientation of the GaN films. X-ray rocking curve showed better crystallinity of semipolar as compared to nonpolar GaN. Atomic force microscopy showed smoother films in case of nonpolar GaN which might be in account of the nitridation treatment. Room temperature photoluminescence study showed nonpolar GaN to have higher value of compressive strain as compared to semipolar GaN film, which was further confirmed by room temperature Raman spectroscopy. Despite the fact that it is difficult to obtain high-quality nonpolar material due to the planar anisotropic nature of the growth mode, we hereby report the development of non-polar GaN of usable quality, on an m-plane sapphire, involving controlled steps of nitridation.