Introduction: Begusarai occupies a central position in North Bihar. In 1870 it was established as a sub-divison of the Munger district. It emerged as a district in 1972. It was named after "Begu" a man of this district who used to look after "Sarai" an old and small market.
Geographical Features: Begusarai lies in North Bihar between latitudes 25°15' and 25° 45' north and longitudes 85°45' and 86°36" east. This town expands perpendicularly from east to west which used to be a main link road. It is bounded on the north by Samastipur, on the south by the Ganga and the Lakhisarai district, on the east by Khagaria and Munger and on the west by the Samastipur and Patna districts.
Administrative structure: The administrative divisions of the district are the following :
Demographic Feature: The 2001 census count placed the Begusarai population at 23,42,989 as on the first of March. The population has grown at an annual average rate of 2.9%. There are many stages in the demographic transition beginning with a declining mortality and continuing fertility to a stage where both mortality and fertility rates decline more or less at the same rate and keep the population stable over a period of time.
Source: Census, 1991, 2001
Land: In accordance with the reports compiled by the District Agriculture Office, Begusarai, the principal characteristics of the land use pattern of the Begusarai district for the year 2002-2003 is as follows:
Total area : 1, 87,967.5 Hectares
Total irrigated land: 74,225.57 Hectares
Forest area : Nil
Orch. etc. area : 5000 Hectares
Kharif Paddy : 22000 Hectares
Garma Paddy : 10000 Hectares
Wheat : 61000 Hectares
Irrigated Area : (1) Permanent: 6384.29 Hectares
Garama & Rabi maize: 50000 Hectares.
(2) Seasonal: 4866.37 Hectares
Kharif maize: 63000 Hectares
Wasteland and non arable area : 2118 Hectares
Natural Water sources: Begusarai district is located in the middle Ganga plain. Main rivers are Burhi Gandak, Balan, Bainty, Baya and Chandrabhaga.
Kaver Jheel: Kaver Jheel one of the Asia’s largest fresh water lake, also famous for Bird’s sanctuary.
Minerals: No minerals of economic importance
Irrigation: Mostly by Tubwells
Forest: This district does not comprise of any forest. In contrast to the eastern portions of the old district of Munger, this district lying south to the Ganga does not comprise of any forest of sal and other large trees. At most of the places, there are gardens of mango and litchi. Chakmuzaffar a village of Naokothi block is famous for banana. Apart from these, Babul, Neem, Guava, Lemon, Gamahar, Peepal, Bamboo, shirish are also found. Shisham is one of the most important ones of them.
Wild animals are scarcely found in this district. However, birds are seen in large numbers in various colours, particularly in the bird sanctuary of Kaver Lake. As of now 59 types of birds from abroad and 107 types of birds from home have been recognized.
Sources of Livelihood : Agriculture is the mainstay here. 88.33% people depend upon agriculture. Main cash crops of the district are oilseeds, tobacco, jute, potato, red chilies, tomato and andi.
The traditional occupation in this area has been the rearing of milch cattle. Animals are used in agricultural work even today. In urban areas rearing of cows of hybrid quality has increased. Despite domestic use of milk, a huge quantity of milk is sold to the Barauni Milk Composite Dairy Industry. This gives lucrative income and employment to the people of Begusarai.
Industry : Begusarai is nationally and internationally known for its industrial recognition. Major industrial units are: Indian Oil Refinery- Barauni, and Hindustan Fertilizer Limited -Barauni, Thermal power station- Barauni and hundreds of small industrial units in the private sector in which Hindustan Fertilizer Limited -Barauni is on the verge of closure. This district has potential for agro- based industries because of large production of maize and oilseeds, etc, as mentioned earlier.
Infrastructure: Begusarai is well connected to other parts of Bihar and India through railways as well as roads. New Delhi - Gawahati railway line passes through Begusarai. Small aerodrome in Ulao, five kms from the district headquarters, which is used on the arrival of very important persons. Railway has a route of 119 km (B.G.) and 67 km (M.G.). Barauni Railway Junction occupies an important position. A number of important trains originate from this station for distant destinations, viz, Delhi, Guwahati, Amritsar, Varanasi, Lucknow, Mumbai, Chennai etc. Rajendra Setu on the Ganga is connected to Mokama and Howrah. There are 18 railway stations in this district. Interior parts of the district are connected to the main roads.The National Highways 28 and 31 link this district to the other parts of the country. Its total length is 95 km. State roads have the total length of 262 km. 95% of the total villages is linked to the rural and urban road facilities.