West Sikkim district

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West Sikkim
District
Ruins
Rabdentse Palace
West Sikkim's location in Sikkim
West Sikkim's location in Sikkim
Coordinates: 27°17′N 88°15′E / 27.283°N 88.250°E / 27.283; 88.250Coordinates: 27°17′N 88°15′E / 27.283°N 88.250°E / 27.283; 88.250
Country  India
State Sikkim
Headquarters Geyzing
Area
 • Total 1,166 km2 (450 sq mi)
Population (2011)
 • Total 136,299
 • Density 120/km2 (300/sq mi)
Time zone IST (UTC+05:30)
ISO 3166 code IN-SK-WS
Website http://wsikkim.gov.in

West Sikkim is a district of the Indian state of Sikkim. Its capital is Geyzing, also known as Gyalshing. The district is a favourite with trekkers due to the high elevations. Other important towns include Pelling and Jorethang.

History[edit]

West Sikkim has the ancient capital of the state Yuksom. It served as the capital beginning in 1642 for almost 50 years until it was shifted to Rabtense. The district was under the occupation of the Nepalese for 30 years in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. After the Gorkha War, the district was returned to Sikkim.

Geography[edit]

West Sikkim is 1166 square kilometers. Attractions include the Khecheoperi lake which as legend has it, not a leaf is allowed to fall on the surface of the lake and the Dubdi Monastery, the first monastery of the state.

National protected area[edit]

Economy[edit]

The economy is mainly agrarian, despite most of the land being unfit for cultivation owing to the precipitous and rocky slopes.

Transport[edit]

The region has many power projects and enjoys almost uninterrupted electricity. Roads are in poor condition owing to the frequent landslides.

Demographics[edit]

According to the 2011 census West Sikkim district has a population of 136,299,[1] roughly equal to the nation of Grenada.[2] This gives it a ranking of 608th in India (out of a total of 640).[1] The district has a population density of 117 inhabitants per square kilometre (300/sq mi) .[1] Its population growth rate over the decade 2001-2011 was 10.58%.[1] West Sikkim has a sex ratio of 941 females for every 1000 males,[1] and a literacy rate of 78.69%.[1]

The people are mainly of Nepali descent. Other ethnic groups include the Lepcha and Bhutia communities. Nepali is the most widely spoken language in the district.

Flora and fauna[edit]

The district has a wide variety of fauna and flora to offer. Since most of the district is hilly it enjoys a temperate climate. Above 3,800 m (12,000 ft) the slopes are full of rhododendron forests.

In 1977 West Sikkim district became home to Khangchendzonga National Park, which has an area of 1,784 km2 (688.8 sq mi).[3] It shares the park with North Sikkim district.[3]

Divisions[edit]

Administrative divisions[edit]

Chortens
Three chortens in Rabendtse
Glacier valley near Thangshing

Scenes from the district

West Sikkim is divided into two sub-divisions:[4]

Gyalshing subdivision Sorreng subdivisionA clickable map of West Sikkim exhibiting its two subdivisions.
About this image


Name Headquarters Number of villages[5] Location
Gyalshing Gyalshing
West Sikkim Subdivisions Gyalshing.png
Sorreng Sorreng
West Sikkim Subdivisions Sorreng.png

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "District Census 2011". Census2011.co.in. 2011. Retrieved 2011-09-30. 
  2. ^ US Directorate of Intelligence. "Country Comparison:Population". Retrieved 2011-10-01. Grenada 108,419 July 2011 est. 
  3. ^ a b Indian Ministry of Forests and Environment. "Protected areas: Sikkim". Retrieved September 25, 2011. 
  4. ^ The Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India, New Delhi, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India (2011) (in English) (PDF). Sikkim Administrative Divisions (Map). http://censusindia.gov.in/2011census/maps/administrative_maps/SIKIM.pdf. Retrieved 2011-09-29.
  5. ^ "MDDS e-Governance Code (Sikkim Rural)" (PDF). Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. 2011. Retrieved 2011-10-15. 

External links[edit]

Wikivoyage has a travel guide for West Sikkim.