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Dhar District

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About the Dhar district

Click on the following link to download district statistics as per NITI Ayog website
http://niti.gov.in/file/464/download?token=V9cvhuli

Brief About Dhar District
According to the census of 1991 Dhar has a population of 13,67,412 persons. The district thus ranked twenty first in descending order of population among the then existing 45 districts, containing 2.07 percent of the population of Madhya Pradesh.

The area of the district is 8,149 sq. km. The area of the district is 1.84 percent of the area of the entire state of Madhya Pradesh.

The District is divided into 4 Sub-divisions. These 4 Sub-Divisions were further divided into 13 Blocks. The District is also divided into 7 Tehsils. District is having 669 Gram Panchayats & 1479 Villages. District is also divided in 20 Thanas (Police Stations)

Physical Divisions
The district extends over three physiographic divisions. They are the Malwa in the north, the Vindhyachal range in central zone and the Narmada valley along the southern boundary. However, the valley is again closed up by the hills in the south-western part.

The Vindhyachal range
A part of the range extends in the district in a crescentic belt generally from south-east to north-west. The range is represented by a strip of hilly area 5 to 20 kilometres in width. It is about 5 km wide near village Dhani near the south-eastern boundary. Near Mograbav in the centre, it is about 10 km further widening to 20 km west of Tanda. To the west of Bagh and Kukshi the range stands disconnected by the valleys of the Mahi and Hatni.

It restarts along the Narmada in the south-west. The northern spur (peak 543.76 metres) froms the boundary between the Sardarpur tahsil and Jhabua district. It extends from the peak of Gomanpura (556.26 metres) to Bajrangarh in Jhabua. Another spur extends to wards Jhabua in the north-west. The great Vindhyachal range extends generally from west to east and scarps at most of its length towards the south. In Dhar also the south-ward escarps are well marked, the wall rising from 400 to 600 metres. However, in the western part their faces have been eroded back into long and deep rugged valleys of the tributary hills of the Narmada. In fact the strong currents of the small strems on the steep southern side have cut back at their heads. The numerous streams of the Narmada valley find their sources on the Malwa plateau. The main line of the highest peaks has been left to the south of their present courses.

In the eastern and central parts of the Vindhyachal in Dhar the main hill range is continuous but in the west it is dissected by deep channels of the rivulets. The range slopes towards the north and gradually meets the Malwa plateau. Numerous spurs also extend over the Malwa plateau in the north. But in the western half in the district one may also find a series of denuded ridges alternating with the parallel stream-channels and running for some kilometres from local confusion, unless one tries to trace the line of the main peaks.

The hightest peak of the district, Mograba (751.03 metres) lies in the central part. Nilkanth (702.26 metres) lies further east and the Shikarpura hill rises up to 698.91 metres. The famous historical fort of Mandugarh towers the flat-topped hill about 600 metres, from the mean sea level.

The Malwa Plateau
The northern half of the district lies on the Malwa plateau. It covers the northern parts of Dhar, Sardarpur and Badnawar tahsils. The average elevation of the plateau is 500 metres above the mean sea level. The land is undulation with a few scattered flat topped hills roughly aligned between the valleys from south to north. The general slope is towards the north. The valleys are covered with black cotton soil of varying thickness, mostly adapted for cultivation. The mounds may bear gravels or the underlaying sandstone rocks may have been exposed. The plateau covers an area of about 466,196 hectares in the district.

The Narmada Valley
Below the Vindhyachal scarps lies the narrow valley of the Narmada. It occupies the sourthern part of the district in Manawar tahsil and the south-eastern part of Kukshi tahsil. The width of the valley is 15 to 30 kilometres. The elavation varies from 275 metres in the northern part of Manawar tahsil to 150 metres in the low plain of Nisarpur in the south-west. To the east between Khalghat and Bakaner the valley is undulation wider, more open and fertile with alluvial cover. Proceeding westwards the valley is studded with hills alternatively cut up by numerous streams which join the Narmada along the southern boundary of the district. The result is that there are few stretches and pockets of alluvium along the streams.

BRIEF HISTORY OF DHAR
Historically and culturally, Dhar District has occupied an important place throught its epoch-ancient, mediaeval and morden. Dhar, known as Dhar Nagari in ancient period and Piran Dhar in mediaeval period, has had the privilege of being of the capital city, both in the ancient and in the early mediaeval periods.

The Paramaras ruled over a vast territory around Malwa for 400 years from the 9th to the 13th centuries. Vakpati Munja and Bhojadeva were the most famous rurlers of this dynasty. Munja was a great general, a poet of repute and a great patron of art and literature. His court was adorned by poets like Dhananjaya, Halayudha, Dhanika, Padmagupta, the author of Navasahasankacharita, Amitagati, etc. He excavated the Munja Sagar at Dhar and Mandu and built beautiful temples at a number of places.

Bhojadeva, the most illustrious of the Parmaras, was one of the greatest kings of ancient India. His name became a household word in India not only as a soldier but also as a builder, a scholar and a writer. Authorship of a large number of books on a variety of subjects like gramer, astronomy, poetics, architecture and asceticism is ascribed to him. He shifted his capital from Ujjain to Dhar, where the established a university for Sanskrit studies. It is known as the Bhoja Shala in which was enshrined the image of Goddes Saraswati. He rebuilt temples, including the magnificient temple at Bhojapur. Bhoja also created a large lake near Bhojapur.

In the year 1305, A.D. the whole of Malwa passed into the hands of Al-ud-din Khalji when Dhar and Mandu were also captured. Dhar continued to be under Delhi Sultans until the reign of Muhammed II. At that time, Dilawar Khan Ghuri was the Governor of Malwa. In 1401 A.D. he assumed royality and established an independent Kingdom of Malwa, with his capital at Dhar. His son and successor, Hoshang Shah moved the capital to Mandu. Hoshang Shah died in 1435 A.D. and was entomed in the splendid mausoleum which is still existing at Mandu. On Hoshang's death his son, Ghazni Khan, succeeded him. He ordered his capital Mandu to be called "Shadiabad (the City of Joy). He, however, had a very short reign, as he was poisoned to death by Mahmud Khalji in 1436 A.D. Mahmud Khan ascended the throne and inaugurated the reign of the Khalji Sultans in Malwa. Khalji Sultans continued to rule Malwa till 1531 A.D. Later Malwa was captured by Sher Shah and was placed under the charge of Shujat Khan. Shujat Khan was succeeded by his son Baz Bahadur. Mandu and its environs reverberated with the stories of romance of Rupmati and Baz Bahadur. When Baz Bahadur was defeated and put to fight by the Mugal army, his beloved Rupmati took poison and put an end to her life to escape dishonour.

In the administrative organisation of Akbar, Dhar was the Chief town of a Mahal in Mandu Sarkar of the Subah of Malwa. Akbar stayed at Dhar for seven days, while directing the invasion of the Deccan. He also visited Mandu a number of times. Mandu was also a favourite resort of Emperor Jahangir, who stayed here for over six months in 1616 A.D. In his memoirs, Jahangir has payed glowing tributes to the pleasant climate and prety scenery at Mandu Noorjahan shot four tigers with six bullets, from the back of an elephant, near Mandu.

When Baji Rao Peshwa divided Malwa among Sindhia, Holkar and the three Pawar Chief, in 1832 A.D. Dhar was bestwed on Anand Rao Pawar. The rulers of Dhar held away over this area till 1948, except for a brief period of three years, following the grat Revolt of 1857.

Dhar was an important centre of Revolt, during the First War of Independence in 1857. Freedom fighters captured the Fort of Dhar which remained in their possession from July to October, 1857. The Bhils also took active part in the Revolt. The rebels paralysed the authority of the State and opposed the British. Consequently, a large force marched against Dhar under Colonel Durand, and captured the town. Just because three or four rounds were fired on the British troops by rebels, the British soldiers took a tribal revenge on the local people. They dragged civilians from their houses, killed them and looted their property ladies were dishonoured. The rebels defended the fort, till 31st October, 1857 when breach was caused. They, therefore, escaped through an underground passage.

As an aftermath of the Revolt, Dhar State was annexed to the British terriory. The British Government however, changed the decision of Government of India, and restored Dhar to Anand Rao III, on the 1st may 1860.

Mandu, clothed in green, with turbulent brooks and torrents rushing down into the encircling ravines, presents a magnificent spectacle. Thousands of tourists are drawn to Mandu, to have a glimpse of the splendid movements there.

Another place of great national importance is Bagh, where the caves have been excavated on the rockface of a lofty hill, on he bank of the Bagh river. The paintings at Bagh date back to a period between the 5th and the 7th centuries A.D., the Golden Age of Indian Art. Together with the Ajanta paintings, the Bagh paintings represent the finest traditions of Indian Art, which had a far-reaching influence on the Buddhist Art, not only in India, but on the entire Buddhist Art in Asia.

The majority of the population in Dhar District belongs to the Scheduled Tribes. The main tribes in the District are Bhils and Bhilalas. Their highest concentration is in Kukshi Tahsil.

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