Nalanda district

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Nalanda district
Ruins of Nalanda Mahavihara
Ruins of Nalanda Mahavihara
Location of Nalanda district in Bihar
Location of Nalanda district in Bihar
Established9 November 1972
HeadquartersBihar Sharif
 • Lok Sabha constituenciesNalanda
 • Total2,367 km2 (914 sq mi)
 • Urban
112.91 km2 (43.59 sq mi)
 • Total2,877,653
 • Density1,200/km2 (3,100/sq mi)
 • Literacy66.41 (M=77.11; F=54.76)
 • Sex ratio921 (2011)
Time zoneUTC+05:30 (IST)
Major highwaysNH 20, NH 33, NH 120, NH 431
WebsiteBihar Sharif - Nalanda
Administrative map of Nalanda district

Nalanda district is one of the thirty-eight districts of the state of Bihar in India. Bihar Sharif is the administrative headquarters of this district. The districts contain the ancient Nalanda Mahavihara a UNESCO World Heritage site.[1]


Nalanda became a fully-fledged district when it was split from Patna on 9 November 1972.[2][3]


Nalanda district occupies an area of 2,355 square kilometres (909 sq mi),[4] comparatively equivalent to Canada's Cornwall Island.[5] The Phalgu, Mohane, Jirayan, and Kumbhari rivers flow through it. The district is a part of Patna Division. Majority of the land in the district is fertile land of Indo Gangetic plane. In the extreme South, there lies the hills of Rajgir. There is also one small hillock in the district headquarters of Bihar Sharif.


Historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
Religions in Nalanda District
Religion Percent
Not Stated

According to the 2011 census Nalanda district has a population of 2,877,653,[7] roughly equal to the nation of Jamaica[8] or the US state of Kansas.[9] This gives it a ranking of 98th in India (out of a total of 640).[7] The district has a population density of 1,220 inhabitants per square kilometre (3,200/sq mi) .[7] Its population growth rate over the decade 2001-2011 was 21.18%.[7] Nalanda has a sex ratio of 921 females for every 1000 males,[7] and a literacy rate of 66.41%.[7]

At the time of the 2011 Census of India, 93.59% of the population in the district spoke Hindi and 5.69% Urdu as their first language.[10]


Agriculture is the backbone of the economy, with the majority of the population engaged in agriculture. Rice, wheat, maize, pulses, potato, fruits, and vegetables are the main crops. A newly setup Ordnance Factory, one of the 41 Indian Ordnance Factories has been set up by the Ministry of Defence, Government of India to manufacture artillery shells at Nalanda by the then Defence Minister Shri George Fernandes. Then there is the railway coach maintenance plant at Harnaut Block of Nalanda.

Tourism is well developed, with lakhs of people flocking at ruins of Nalanda University, Rajgir and Pawapuri. Rajgir was the first capital of Magadh Empire. Lord Buddha had spent years at this place. Surrounded by five hills, it has got scenic views. Pawapuri, the Nirwana place of Lord Mahavir, is holi place for the Jains.[11] [12]In 2006 the Ministry of Panchayati Raj named Nalanda one of the country's 250 most backward districts (out of a total of 640).[13] It is one of the 36 districts in Bihar currently receiving funds from the Backward Regions Grant Fund Programme (BRGF).[13]


Since Kurmis are dominant in Nalanda, it is also known by the name Kurmistan in political circle.[14]


Sub Divisions: 3 - Modern District of Nalanda with HQ Biharsharif was established on 9 November 1972. Earlier it was Biharsharif sub-division of Patna district. Bihar Sharif, Rajgir, Hilsa
Blocks: 20 - Giriyak, Rahui, Ajaypur Noorsarai, Harnaut, Chandi (Nalanda), Islampur (Nalanda), Rajgir, Asthawan, Sarmera, Hilsa, Biharsharif, Ekangarsarai, Bena, Nagarnausa, Karai Parsarai, Silao, Parwalpur, Katrisarai, Bind, Tharthari.

Flora and fauna[edit]

In 1978 Nalanda district became home to the Pant Wildlife Sanctuary, Rajgir which has an area of 35.84 km2 (13.8 sq mi).[15]


Nalanda district is fast developing and the ruins of the ancient Nalanda University or UNESCO Nalanda Archaeological Site attracts tourists from all over the world driving the local economy.

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ Chaudhary, Pranava Kumar (15 July 2016). "UNESCO declares Nalanda Mahavihara World Heritage Site". The Times of India. Retrieved 3 January 2021.
  2. ^ "Sub-Divisions | District Nalanda, Government of Bihar | India". Retrieved 3 January 2021.
  3. ^ "Districts of India". Retrieved 3 January 2021.
  4. ^ Srivastava, Dayawanti et al. (ed.) (2010). "States and Union Territories: Bihar: Government". India 2010: A Reference Annual (54th ed.). New Delhi, India: Additional Director General, Publications Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (India), Government of India. pp. 1118–1119. ISBN 978-81-230-1617-7.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  5. ^ "Island Directory Tables: Islands by Land Area". United Nations Environment Program. 18 February 1998. Retrieved 11 October 2011. Cornwall Island 2,358km2
  6. ^ Decadal Variation In Population Since 1901
  7. ^ a b c d e f "District Census 2011". 2011. Retrieved 30 September 2011.
  8. ^ US Directorate of Intelligence. "Country Comparison:Population". Retrieved 1 October 2011. Jamaica 2,868,380 July 2011 est
  9. ^ "2010 Resident Population Data". U. S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 30 September 2011. Kansas 2,853,118
  10. ^ "C-16 Population By Mother Tongue - Bihar". Retrieved 27 September 2019.
  11. ^
  12. ^ PTI (17 November 2017). "OFB Nalanda to develop indigenous artillery shells". @businessline. Retrieved 19 November 2020.
  13. ^ a b Ministry of Panchayati Raj (8 September 2009). "A Note on the Backward Regions Grant Fund Programme" (PDF). National Institute of Rural Development. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 April 2012. Retrieved 27 September 2011.
  14. ^ IANS (27 October 2015). "Caste dominates in Bihar's third round polling". Business Standard India. Retrieved 18 June 2019.
  15. ^ Indian Ministry of Forests and Environment. "Protected areas: Bihar". Archived from the original on 23 August 2011. Retrieved 25 September 2011.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 25°12′00″N 85°31′12″E / 25.20000°N 85.52000°E / 25.20000; 85.52000