|• Collector & District Magistrate||D. Prasanth Kumar Reddy, IAS|
|• Superintended of Police||R.Prakash, IPS|
|• Member of the Legislative Assembly (India)||Ananga Udaya Singh Deo|
|• Member of Parliament||Kalikesh Narayan Singh Deo|
|Elevation||383 m (1,257 ft)|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Vehicle registration||OD 03|
Population/area/business wise Balangir town is the fourth largest town (census 2011) in Western Odisha after Rourkela, Sambalpur and Jharsuguda. It is also known as the cultural hub of Western Odisha. Balangir town has many cultural groups who are trying hard to preserve the dying down Kosali folk arts & dance. Balangir municipality is divided into twenty one wards. Each ward consists of two three Units or sub-areas called "Pada" or "Para". Balangir town has nearly forty "Pada's". Some of the largest "Pada's" of Balangir town are Rugudi Pada, Sud Pada, Maal Pada, Tikra Pada, Radharani Pada, Sagar Pada, Pratapsagar pada, Talpali Pada, Jagannath Pada, Thikadar Pada, Palaceline, Gandhinagar Pada, Shantinagar Pada, Barpali Pada, Tulsinagar Pada, Kansari Pada, Teligoth Pada, Radharani rara, Club para, Khadal para, Rameshwar nagar, Ranjendra para, A.B.S.S. road etc. It is also home to the Ordnance Factory Balangir which is run by the Ordnance Factories Board Ministry of Defence, Government of India to manufacture various types of products for the Indian Armed Forces. It is spread over an area of 12,200 acres.
- 1 Geography
- 2 Demographics
- 3 History
- 4 Firsts of Balangir
- 5 Education
- 6 Notable Personalities
- 7 Religious places
- 8 Tourist place in an around Balangir
- 9 Markets
- 10 Transport
- 11 Chief Minister from Balangir
- 12 Politics
- 13 References
- 14 External links
Balangir is located at  It has an average elevation of 383 metres (800 feet)..
As of 2001[update] India census, Balangir had a population of 85,203. Males constitute 52% of the population and females 48%. Balangir has an average literacy rate of 74%, higher than the national average of 59.5%; with 57% of the males and 43% of females literate. 11% of the population is under 6 years of age. Chief communicative language of Balangir is Kosali. For education and official purpuse English, Hindi and Oriya are used.
Balangir was an obscure village till 1871 when the Court of Wards administration during the minority of the then ruler Ram Chandra Deo III shifted the capital from Patnagarh. Immediate steps were taken to build a planned township.
Patnagarh, which was the capital of the Kingdom of Patna for several centuries was considered unsuitable to be the state headquarters because of its unhealthy climate. The moats and the bamboo thickets which had long protected the place against enemies became breeding ground of mosquitoes causing widespread malaria. The place was also not on the direct road from Bhawanipatna to Sambalpur. So, Balangir was selected to be the headquarters not only because of its climate but also for its admirable location on the route connecting the headquarters of Sambalpur with that of Kalahandi.
Planning and set up of Balangir town
The plan of Balangir town was prepared by Pandit Chintamani Bidyabhusan as a square town with roads crossing one another at right angles was accepted and the new township was constructed to the south of the old village.
Sir Douglas, the then Deputy Commissioner of Sambalpur, got the sanction of the government and transferred the Headquarters from Patnagarh to the new town of Balangir in 1872. Old Balangir is now known as Junha Dihi meaning the old house site.
Already in the 1871, the dispensary was built and some government offices moved to Balangir. The Court of Wards' administration lasted for 22 years, from 1871 to 1893 and during that period the jail building, the palace for the Maharaja and many office buildings were constructed. During the Kondh rebellion of Kalahandi in 1882, the importance of Balangir increased as it became the main seat of operation against the rebellious Kondhs.
Firsts of Balangir
After the setup of Balangir town, the dowager Rani Amrut Kumari built the temple of Gopalji, the earliest temple of the town and caused to be excavated a large tank which was named Pratap Sagar after her husband Maharaja Surpratap Deo.
Maharaja Ramachandra Deo III established the first English school in Balangir sometime between 1893 and 1895. Maharaja Dalganjan Singh built the two storied court building and established the Dalganjan press. He made improvement of a big tank called Karanga Kata in the heart of the town and it was named after him as Dala Sagar. Also, during the rule of Maharaja Dalganjan Singh another defunct tank was re-excavated and was named as Rani Sagar bearing the memory of Rani Amrut Kumari. Also during his rei
A contactor named Parbat Bira of Kutch built by the time a beautiful temple of God Narasimha. Balangir grew in size and grandeur during the rule of Maharaja Prithiviraj Singh Deo who established the High School, which was later known as Prithviraj High School (P R High School), a Sanskrit Tol, the George Literary Club and the fine temple of Samaleswari and Patneswari. The construction of the new palace building then known as Badal Mahal was undertaken by him about two miles to the south of the town by the side of the road leading to Titlagarh. It was later named as Sailashri Palace. Prior to this the royal palace was situated at the heart of the town and was known as Sheesh Mahal (currently known as Old Palace).
During the administration of Maharaja Rajendra Narayan Singh Deo the town was beautified by laying out Rajendra Park and by the Rajendra Experimental Farm and construction of several fine buildings. The X-ray ward, the maternity ward and the Dairy farm were started and a Museum for preservation of antiquities was also organised. The town had its first college, Rajendra College Balangir in 1944. In 1962 the Women's College was started by member of parliament and Rajya Sabha member Sri Krushna Chandra Panda of Rugudi Para, who also established the Govt. Ayurvedic College, Town Boys High school and Town Girls high school amongst many other educational institute.
The town is situated on the right bank of the Lakshmi, a hill-stream which flows in her rocky bed in serpentine course. The stream has been bridged at five places as the town is expanding on the left bank.
Balangir has different schools and colleges like,Viswatma Vidya Mandir, Prithviraj High school (PR Highschool), Patitapaban (PP) Academy. Balangir Girls School, Saraswati Sishu Mandir, Little Flower School,Roshni public school, Oriental Public School, Central School, Balangir Public School, Rajendra College, Women's college, Govt. Ayurvedic College, Sushree Institute Of Technical Education, Sadaipali, Shemford Futuristic School - Balangir, IDM Public School, Bachpan pre-school. Yuvodaya, gayatri and jitm are private colleges imparting College education at higher secondary level. This college having a specialist Faculty pool for entrance exams.
- Dr.Srinibash Udgata, Eminent Poet awarded Padmashri by Govt. of India
- Kailash Chandra Meher, Eminent Artist awarded Padmashri by Govt. of India
There are hundred of temples in Balangir town. Each and every Pada has one or more temples. Following are some of the Most Popular and important temples of Balangir Town.
- Maa Pataneswari Temple (Pataneswari Gudi) - The presiding deity of Balangir District.
- Maa Samaleswari Temple (Samalei Gudi) - Second most visited Famous temple of Western Odisha after Samaleswari temple of Sambalpur. Dedicated to Maa Samalei.
- Gopaljee Temple - Oldest temple of Balangir town dedicated to Lord Krishna.
- Nursingha Temple - One of the earliest temple of Balangir dedicated to Lord Narasimha
- Santoshi Temple - Dedicated to Maa Santoshi
- Lokanath Baba Temple - Dedicated to Lord Shiva
- Sheetala Mata Temple - located inside the premises of Santoshi Temple.
- Bhagwat Temple - Dedicated to Lord Krishna, Garuda and Bhagwat Geeta. Located at Rugudi Pada
- Jagannath Temple - Dedicated to Lord Jagannath
- Mausi Maa Temple - Dedicated to Lord Jagannath. Lord Jagannath stays at this temple during Rath Yatra.
- Durga Temple - Dedicated to Lord Durga.
- Ramji Mandir - One of the Oldest temple at Ramji Pada dedicated to Lord Rama
- Ram Temple - Located near daily market is dedicated to Lord Ram, Seeta, Laxman and Hanuman.
- Shyama Kali Temple - Dedicated to Lord Kali. Located at Rugudi Pada
- Saibaba Temple - Located off Sambalpur Road, On the outskirt of Balangir town
- Sathya Sai Baba temle - Located at Rugudi Pada
- Laxmi Narayan Temple - One of the Oldest temple dedicated to Lord Laxmi, located at Club Pada.
Religious places of other religion/sects
- Viswatma Chetana Parishad, Anand Niketan, khujenpali, Bgr. If you are in search of real spirituality then this is a must visit place. Five km from Balangir town in way of circuit house.
- There is also a Gurudwara for Sikh community, located at Ramai Talkies Road
- There is one Sunni Masjid for the Muslim community, located at Tikrapara
- There are several churches in Balangir town. Prominent amongst them are Roman Catholic Church at Rugudi Pada and Protestant church at Adarsha Pada.
- There is one Jalaram temple for the Hindu-Gujurati Community
- There is one Jhulelal temple also for the Sidhi community
- Harishankar: It is about70km away from Balangir, Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva are being worshiped here. A Yatra called Shiva Chaturdashi mela is observed with hue which attracts visitors and devotees form across the country.
Tourist place in an around Balangir
Prominent recretion place for Balangiria's are :-
- Rajendra Park - Built by last king of Patna (princely state) HH. Rajendra Narayan Singh Deo is a 100-year-old park. This park is situated in the heart of Balangir town. It is a lush green park with hundred varieties of Roses and other flowers. The park has three beautiful water fountains which light up at evenings. Rajendra Park also have children playing areas and various amusements. It has got a cafeteria also. Besides that the park is equipped with Dolby Digital Sound system which plays old Hindi songs throughout the evening. In the middle of the park there is a statue of its founder HH Rajendra Narayan Singhdeo. The timing of the park is from afternoon 4 pm to evening 10 pm. Entry fee for this park is Rs.2, which is used for the maintenance. Rajendra Park is situated in front of the Balangir Municipality Office.
- Karanga Kata - One of the oldest lake of Western Odisha. Recently Balangir Municipality has renovated it and started Boating. Lush green garden has been built around the lake to make it beautiful. It is located behind the Durga Mandir.
- Anand Niketan, Khujenpali –there is a beautiful Ashram(org by Viswatma Chetana Parishad ) on 40 Acrs of land surrounded by School ( Viswatma Vidya mandir), yoga Centre, Puja Mandapa, Sadhana Kehtra, Ashutosh Peeth, Green forest, Garden, Prajna Kutir, Santha Nivas etc. every year nearly thousands visitors coming from around the world to see this spiritual place on various occasion like Sivaratri, Navaratri, Guru Purnima and for many Yoga and spiritual practices. The Asharma is established from 1985 by Paramahamsa Swami Sri Satyaprajnananda Saraswati.
- Divine Life Society - Conducting Yoga classes from the last four decade. Location Gaura Mutt, Nalkhandi (Rugudi Pada).
- Khujenpali Ashram - If you are in search of real spirituality then this is a must visit place. Five kilometres from Balangir town.
- Jalia - It's a popular picnic spot for the youths. It is located in the middle of dense forest. one small river also passed through the spot. Located around 20 km from Balangir.
- Ramai Talkies - It's a historical single screen movie theater. It is around 70 years old.
- Priyadarshini Talkies - A air-cooling single screen movie theater
- Lower Sukhtel project - A popular picnic spot on the bank of river Sukhtel. Current construction work is underway for a proposed dam here. Located around 15 kilometers from Balangir.
- Sailashree Palace - A huge palace belonging to the Royal Family of Balangir.
- Agalpur (Raj) - The nature's beauty Agalpur (Raj) is a block of Balangir district. The "Rana Ghat" of river "Ang" at Agalpur (Raj) is most beautiful during the Rainy day.
- Sagarpada Mahadev Mandir-LOcated in the sagarpada near Rugudipada.
- Tangreswar Shiva Mandir- Located in the manoharpur.
- Amu farm- built by private enterprenuer which contains a numerous variety of plantation along with amu birds.
Balangir town is famous for Sambalpuri sarees and dress materials. One can get wide varieties of sambalpuri materials here with best rates, from Sambalpuri bedsheets to Sambalpuri pata sarees which costs in thousands and lakhs. There are a good range of cloth retailer in a market named sindhi market. Balangir Market is also famous throughout India for its cabbage. It is the best breed cabbage with the cheapest rates. Balangir is also famous for Sambalpuri Music albums.. There are numerous production house in Balangir who are engaged in producing Sambalpuri Music albums. Each year on an average 100 Sambalpuri album is getting released in Balangir. Balangir is also famous for its local cuisine or snacks, like Chaul bara, Chaka peeta, gaham bara(Gulgula), labangalata, chena gaaja etc.
A daily market is situated at the heart of Balangir town. It is famous for all kinds of daily needs. There are sweets stores named Raj mandir, Royal sweets,OM Sweets which are very famous for various kinds of sweets item especially "CHENA PODA" and "LADDU" etc.
A new 289 km long railway line from Bolangir to Khurda Road junction was sanctioned in 1993 and its foundation stone was laid in June 2001 but there has been very little progress in construction of this railway line. Out of 289 km length, 22 km is in Bolangir district. Even all the land required for the railway line has not been acquired until the end of 2011.
Bolangir is connected by road to the state capital, Bhubaneswar, 327 km away in northwest, Cuttack, Dhenkanal, and other important places in Odisha and neighboring states.
Chief Minister from Balangir
The last ruler of Balangir Shri Rajendra Narayan Singhdeo went on to become the Chief Minister of Odisha state.
Current MLA from Bolangir Assembly Constituency is Ananga Udaya Singh Deo of BJD, who won the seat in State elections of 2009. He also won in 2004 and 2000 as BJD candidate, and earlier as JD candidate in 1995 and 1990. Mahammad Mujafar Hussain Khan had won this seat as a candidate of INC in 1985, and as INC(I) candidate in 1980. Muralidhar Guru of JNP was MLA from this seat in 1977.
- Balangir is a famous town in Odisha and also the major hub of trade and commerce of Odisha.
- has been designed as a District Culture Centre
- Falling Rain Genomics, Inc - Balangir
- "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01.
- "State Elections 2004 - Partywise Comparison for 111-Bolangir Constituency of Odisha". Election Commission of India. Archived from the original on 29 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-26.
- "Assembly Constituencies - Corresponding Districts and Parliamentary Constituencies of Odisha". Election Commission of India. Retrieved 2008-09-26.
- Govt. Of Odisha Website
- Official website of Balangir
- Online Business Web directory of Balangir
- A Brief History of Sambalpuri Music - http://odishanewstoday.com/entertainment/538-a-brief-history-of-sambalpuri-music.html
- Water crisis in Balangir - Tough Days Ahead http://www.odishanewstoday.com/features/141-water-crisis-in-balangir-tough-days-ahead.html