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Coordinates: 29°52′29.49″N 77°53′23.74″E / 29.8748583°N 77.8899278°E / 29.8748583; 77.8899278
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Roorkee City
Roorkee City
Main Administrative Building IIT Roorkee
The East India Company-era (1854) Ganeshpur bridge over the Ganges Canal in Roorkee, 2008
Kingdom of Dreams
From top: Main Administrative Building of IIT Roorkee, The East India Company-era (1854) Ganeshpur Bridge over the Ganges Canal and St. John's Church.
Roorkee City is located in Uttarakhand
Roorkee City
Roorkee City
Location in Uttarakhand, India
Coordinates: 29°52′29.49″N 77°53′23.74″E / 29.8748583°N 77.8899278°E / 29.8748583; 77.8899278
Country India
Founded byProby Cautley
 • TypeMayor–council
 • BodyRoorkee Municipal Corporation
 • MayorGaurav Goel, Independent
 • Municipal CommissionerVijay Nath Shukl, PCS
 • Rank5
275 m (902 ft)
 (2011)[citation needed]
 • Metro
 • OfficialHindi
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
Telephone code+91-1332
Vehicle registrationUK-17
Sex ratio1.12[1] /

Roorkee (Rūṛkī) is a city and a municipal corporation in the Haridwar district of the state of Uttarakhand, India. It is 31 km (19 mi) from Haridwar city, the district headquarter. It was a part of Landhaura Princely State of Panwar Gurjar's till 1824 when the British occupied it by defeating first freedom fighter[2] Vijay Singh Gujjar. It is spread over a flat terrain under Sivalik Hills of Himalayas. The city is developed on the banks of Ganges Canal, its dominant feature, which flows from north–south through middle of the city. Roorkee is home to Asia's first engineering college Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, formerly known as Thomson College of Civil Engineering. Roorkee is also known for the Roorkee Cantonment, one of the country's oldest military establishments and the headquarters of Bengal Engineer Group since 1853.[3] A freight train ran in between Roorkee and Piran Kaliyar on 22 December 1851, this was two years before first passenger trains were started between Bombay and Thana in 1853 and 14 years after first freight trains ran in Chennai in 1837.[4]


Ganga canal, 1860.

Roorkee is listed in the Ain-i-Akbari as a pargana under the sarkar of Saharanpur, producing a revenue of 12,234 dams for the imperial treasury and supplying a force of 1200 infantry and 125 cavalry.[5] After that it was a part of Landhaura Princely State of Panwar Gurjar's till 1824 when the British occupied it by defeating Vijay Singh Gujjar.[6]

Before 1840, the city was a tiny hamlet consisting of mud huts on the banks of the Solani rivulet.[7] Digging work on the Upper Ganges Canal formally began in April 1842, under the aegis of Proby Cautley, a British officer. Local works were designed and overseen by the engineer Thomas Login.[8] Soon, Roorkee developed into a town. The canal, which was formally opened on 8 April 1854, provided irrigation waters for more than 767,000 acres (310,000 ha) in 5,000 villages.[9]

Col. P.T. Cautley, an officer in the British Army, was most instrumental in constructing the canal. According to Dept. of Hydrology the canal, which is still considered as a marvel of engineering, was built in 1853. However, water was released in the canal on 8 April 1854.

To look after the maintenance of the canal, the Canal Workshop and Iron Foundry were established in 1843 on the civil lines on the canal bank which is known as the Irrigation workshop nowadays. This was followed by the establishment of Civil Engineering School; classes started in 1845[7] to train local youth to assist in the civil-engineering work of the Upper Ganges Canal.[10] This was to become the first engineering college established in India.[11] On 25 November 1847, the college was formally constituted through a proposal by the Sir James Thomason, Lt. Governor of North-Western Province (1843–53).[7] After his death in 1853, the college was rechristened as Thomason College of Civil Engineering. The college later upgraded to University of Roorkee in 1949; on 21 September 2001, through an Act of parliament, it was made one of the Indian Institutes of Technology, IIT Roorkee.[12] In 1853 Bengal Sappers and Miners were stationed here which provided a controlling influence during the 1857 uprising. Other important events in the history of Roorkee include that under the Post Office Act of 1866, it was among the first few towns to have a post office and first telegraph office in the district. Now Roorkee has a General Post Office (GPO) and a number of post offices located in Roorkee City and Cantt. In 1886, Roorkee was placed on the Railway map of India. In 1907, first provincial trunk road Meerut-Roorkee-Dehradun was constructed. In 1920, Roorkee became the first town in Uttar Pradesh to have hydroelectricity.

Solani Aqueduct Of Ganges Canal

India's first aqueduct was constructed over the Solani river, near Roorkee, part of the Ganges Canal project, which itself was India's first irrigation work in North India, started by the British.[13] In 1851, the Solani Aqueduct Railway was built by Proby Cautley in Roorkee to transport construction materials for Ganges canal. It was operated by the Bengal Sappers. A steam engine, Jenny Lind, (specially shipped from England moved on rails in India), pulling a freight train ran in Roorkee on 22 December 1851, between Roorkee and Piran Kaliyar, 10 km (6.2 mi) from the city, two years before first passenger trains were started between Bombay and Thana in 1853 and 14 years after first freight trains ran in Chennai in 1837.[4] A replica of what the locomotive is thought to have looked like is exhibited at Roorkee Railway Station.

The municipality of Roorkee was created in 1868.[7] Now it is a Municipal Corporation. It had been home to the Bengal Sappers and Miners since 1853, and two artillery units were stationed there.[7] Today, the Roorkee Cantonment has a large army base. The Bengal Engineering Group and Centre (BEG&C), are still there today.

In 1901, when the city had a population of 17,197, it was made the headquarters of the Roorkee Tehsil, in Saharanpur district of the United Province of the British Raj; the tehsil included in it 426 villages (of the parganas of Jwalapur, Manglaur and Bhagwanpur) and six towns, the most important among them being Haridwar and Manglaur.[9] The Old Cemetery in the city is a protected monument, by the Archaeological Survey of India.[14]


Roorkee is located at 29°52′N 77°53′E / 29.87°N 77.88°E / 29.87; 77.88.[15] It has an average elevation of 268 metres (879 ft).

Roorkee is 184.3 kilometres (114.5 mi) north of the Indian capital, New Delhi, between the rivers Ganges and Yamuna, close to the foothills of the Himalayas. It is 65 kilometres away from Dehradun (the capital of Uttarakhand), 30 km (19 mi) from Haridwar and 48 km (30 mi) away from Muzaffarnagar. Before the creation of Uttarakhand on 9 November 2000,[16] Roorkee was a part of the state of Uttar Pradesh.

The city is located in the Roorkee plain which is composed of recent alluvium with a gentle slope. As per the census 2011, this region is spread over 129.88 km2 (50.15 sq mi).[17]

There are a total of106 villages in Roorkee community development block of Hardwar. The total population of Roorkee block is 301,268 with male population of 158,879 and female population of 142,389. There are 51,329 households in Roorkee block, Hardwar district. [18]


Roorkee has a monsoon-influenced humid subtropical climate (Köppen Cwa), typical of the northern Indo-Gangetic plain. There are three seasons. A sweltering, dry “hot” season begins in mid-March and extends until mid-June with steadily increasing humidity and discomfort. From mid-June until the end of September the southwest monsoon gives the “wet” season with a total of around 770 millimetres (30 in) of rainfall or about-four-fifths of the annual total. This monsoonal rain is accompanied by hot temperatures, very warm mornings, and extremely uncomfortable humidity. From early October the “cool” season begins as the monsoon retreats, featuring warm to very warm afternoons, cool mornings, and moderate humidity. Occasionally western disturbances between January and March will bring a little rainfall during this season, although the average total from October to March is only 145 millimetres or 5.7 inches.

Climate data for Roorkee (1981-2010, extremes 1901-2012)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 30.1
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 20.1
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) 6.2
Record low °C (°F) −1.1
Average rainfall mm (inches) 31.0
Average rainy days 2.2 2.5 2.4 1.4 2.8 4.3 9.5 11.2 5.7 1.0 0.5 1.1 44.6
Average relative humidity (%) (at 17:30 IST) 62 53 44 35 37 47 69 74 68 57 59 60 56
Source: India Meteorological Department[19][20]


The Roorkee Tehsil is the most populous among the three Tehsils in the Haridwar District with 45% of its population categorized as urban.[17] According to the 2011 census Roorkee city has a population of 392,000,[citation needed] within the area of 8.11 square kilometres.[21] The average literacy rate of Roorkee is 89.48%.[citation needed] The sex ratio of the town as-of 2011, is 863 for all age groups while between the age 0-6 it is 820.[17]

Government and politics[edit]

For administrative purposes, the Roorkee city is part of the Haridwar district's Roorkee Tehsil.[22] The city falls under the Roorkee Legislative Assembly constituency, which is one of the seventy electoral Uttarakhand Legislative Assembly constituencies of Uttarakhand state in India.[23]

Civic administration[edit]

The governance of Roorkee city is done by the Roorkee Municipal Coorporation (RMC) which comes under Roorkee Metropolitan Region. According to the 2011 census, the RMC covers an areas of 28.91 km2 (11.16 sq mi) with 1.84 lakh population. The RMC is administered through the Uttar Pradesh Municipal Corporation Act 1959 which was adopted and amended by Uttarakhand. The act is administered by the Urban Development Department (UDD), Government of Uttarakhand.[24]

The council is formed every five years through ward councillors's elections and it holds the highest authority within the Urban Local Body (ULB) to make decisions. The council is headed by a Mayor, who is elected by the Ward Councillors from 40 municipal wards. A Municipal Commissioner (MC) is appointed by the state who is responsible for the operations of the ULB. The RMC is responsible for city related civic services like cleanliness of the city, solid waste management, maintenance of gardens/dividers/circles, street light, bio-medical waste, all storm water and wastewater drainage.[24]


The RMC has 40 wards with a voter population of 14.05 lakh voters- split between nearly 7.26 lakh men and 6.79 lakh women voters.[25] The major political parties which are active in the local elections are Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP), Indian National Congress (INC), Bhartiya Lok Dal (BLD), Janta Party (JP), Lok Dal (LKD) and Samajwadi Party (SP).[26]


Roorkee is an industrial base of Haridwar district. It is partially industrialized. Its main industries are ship parts manufacture, surveying, drawing and mechanical instruments. It has a GDP of US$ 112 million.[17]


Major languages spoken in Roorkee are Hindi 72%, Urdu 23%, Punjabi 3%, and English 2%.[27]


  1. ^ "Census of India, 2011". Office of the Registrar General, India. 2 March 2002. Archived from the original on 16 June 2004. Retrieved 28 May 2010.
  2. ^ Singh, Mayank; Singh, O. P.; Singh, M. P. (28 October 2014). "BIOMASS AND PRODUCTIVITY OF WEEDS IN A FALLOW PERIOD AT GUJAR TAL MARGIN". Ecoprint: An International Journal of Ecology. 20 (0). doi:10.3126/eco.v20i0.11335. ISSN 1024-8668.
  3. ^ "Bengal Sappers’ saga of valour", The Tribune, 24 November 2008.
  4. ^ a b irfca.org/docs/history/india-first-railways.html
  5. ^ Abu'l-Fazl ibn Mubarak (1891). The Ain-i-Akbari. Translated by Jarrett, Henry Sullivan. Calcutta: Asiatic Society of Bengal. p. 292. Retrieved 21 January 2021.
  6. ^ "Roorkee Cantonment Board - History". Retrieved 2 September 2021.
  7. ^ a b c d e Roorkee Town2, The Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 21, p. 325.
  8. ^ "Obituary. Thomas Login, F.r.s.e., 1823-1874". Minutes of the Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers. 39 (1875): 269–271. 1875. doi:10.1680/imotp.1875.22738.
  9. ^ a b Upper Ganges Canal, The Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 12, p. 138.
  10. ^ Indian Engineering Colleges, The Imperial Gazetteer of India, 1909, v. 4, p. 321.
  11. ^ Sandes, Lt Col E.W.C. (1935). The Military Engineer, Vol II. Chatham: Institution of Royal Engineers. p. 358.
  12. ^ IIT Roorkee Official website.
  13. ^ Irrigation and Navigation Imperial Gazetteer of India, 1909 v. 3, p. 341.
  14. ^ Alphabetical List of Monuments – Uttarakhand Archaeological Survey of India website.
  15. ^ "Falling Rain Genomics, Inc – Roorkee". Fallingrain.com. Retrieved 27 December 2011.
  16. ^ Uttarakhand Govt. of India, Official website.
  17. ^ a b c d "Cencus of India- 2011, District census handbook-Hardwar- Village and town directory" (PDF). Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  18. ^ https://myroots.euttaranchal.com/block-roorkee-hardwar-91.html
  19. ^ "Station: Roorkee Climatological Table 1981–2010" (PDF). Climatological Normals 1981–2010. India Meteorological Department. January 2015. pp. 671–672. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 February 2020. Retrieved 15 February 2020.
  20. ^ "Extremes of Temperature & Rainfall for Indian Stations (Up to 2012)" (PDF). India Meteorological Department. December 2016. p. M228. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 February 2020. Retrieved 15 February 2020.
  21. ^ "District census handbook-Hardwar-Village and townwise Primary Census Abstract (PCA)" (PDF). Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. Retrieved 6 June 2022.
  23. ^ "Roorkee - Uttarakhand Assembly constituency Details". Archived from the original on 16 August 2018. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  24. ^ a b "Roorkee Municipal Corporation-ICRA". 28 February 2019. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  25. ^ "Roorkee Municipal Corporation elections: Polling underway in 40 wards, result to be declared on Nov 24". DNA India. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  26. ^ "Roorkee Municipal Corporation Election Count Released, Congress leadsFor Mayor Post". News Track. 24 November 2019.
  27. ^ "Census of India Website : Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India". www.censusindia.gov.in. Retrieved 28 August 2018.

External links[edit]