Kishanganj district, a part of Purnia division is a district of Bihar state with its administrative headquarters located at Kishanganj town. It is believe that earlier the district of Kishanganj was a part of Purnia district, a part of the Mithila region. For the first time Mithila came into the limelight after being settled by Indo-Aryan peoples who set up the Mithila Kingdom (also popularly known as Kingdom of the Videhas). During the late Vedic period i.e. (c. 1100-500 BCE), the kingdom of the Videhas along with Kuru and Pancala rose up as one of the major political and cultural centers of South Asia. At that time the kings of the Kingdom of the Videhas were well-known as Janakas. There is also an interesting story associated with the name of the district. During the period of Mohammed Fakiruddin, a Khagada Nawab, one Hindu saint arrived at his place and wanted to rest since he was tried. But he refused to enter at the place when he heard that the name of the place is Alamganj, the name of the river name is Ramzan and the name of the Jamindar is Fakiruddin. Then the Nawab made a separate region, started from Kishanganj Gudri to Ramzan pool and named it Kishanganj. At the time of Mughal era Kishanganj district was a part of Nepal and was popularly known as Nepalgarh. Mohammed Raza, a Mughal administrator captured the fort of Nepalgarh and changed its name to Alamganj. It is the oldest and most important sub-division of Purnia district. Kishanganj was emerged as a separate district in the map of Bihar state on 14th January, 1990 after the long and hard struggle of 17 years.
Geographically, the district lies at 25°68'N latitude, 86°94'E longitude and 55 m Altitude. In the year 2021, there was a total 5.50% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 1,884 sq km. and it is bounded by Nepal on the north, Purnia district on the south west, West Bengal on the east and south east and Araria district on the west. The climate of the district remains hot and humid during summers. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 2352.9 mm in the year of 2021-22.
Administration wise, the district has only 1 sub-division i.e. Kishanganj. This sub-division further divided into 7 developmental blocks including Bhahadurganj, Dighalbank, Kishanganj, Kochadhaman, Pothia, Terhagachha, Thakurgunj. There are 1 Lok Sabha seat and 4 Assembly constituencies in the district. Moreover, the district comprises 3 towns and 771 villages. The administrative language in the district is Hindi.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 16,90,400 out of which 8,66,970 are males and 8,23,430 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 950 females for every 1000 males. During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate in the district was 30.40% including 29.49% were males and 31.37% were females. As per 2011 census the major religions in the district are Muslim and Hindu with 67.58% and 31.43% of the total population. The population density in the district is 897 persons per sq. km. According to 2011 census the principal languages in the district are Urdu and Hindi with 32.62% and 54.14%. In the year 2020 the number of live births in the district was 64,905 out of which 33,927 were males and 30,966 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 6,780 out of which 4,204 were males and 2,576 were females.
The economy of the district is solely based on agriculture. Some of its chief agricultural products are paddy, wheat, maize, jute, etc. Almost all people of the district are engaged in agriculture since it is scantily industrialized. Only a few industries and factories of jute, plywood, silk, poultry farming, tea processing, etc are found in it which also helps in its economy to some extent. In 2006 the Ministry of Panchayati Raj declared Kishanganj district as one of the economically distressed district in Bihar and currently receiving funds from the Backward Regions Grant Fund Programme (BRGF). In the year 2011-12 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 2,61,346 lakh at current price and Rs. 1,55,923 lakh at constant prices in the year 2004-2005. In the year 2011-12 the net domestic product in the district was Rs. 2,36,766 lakh at current price and Rs. 1,39,231 lakh at constant prices in the year 2004-2005.
The district is not a great seat of learning but it has numerous schools and colleges. Some of its reputed educational institutions are Azad National College, Sushilahari Inter College, Future Institute of IT, Alim Public School, New Ideal Public School, Madarsa Samadia Fulwari, Bal Mandir Senior Secondary School, etc. As per 2011 census the literacy rate in the district is 55.46% including 63.66% are males and 46.76% are females. The number of literates in the district is 7,45,056 out of which 4,39,921 are males and 3,05,135 are females.
Kishanganj is an abode of various centres of attraction. Churli Estate, located on the outskirts of Thakurganj block has a ruined Haveli. This Haveli, once the matter of pride of the Churli estate but at present it is totally in a dilapidated condition. Har Gauri temple, situated in Thakurganj block is a temple of at least 100 years old which was built by the Zamindar of Tagore Estate. Bandarjoola is the village where during excavations two beautiful statues of Lord Vishnu and Sun God were found. Kachuudah Lake, located 40 km. from Kishanganj is an abode of varieties of migratory birds. Myriad picnic spots and beautiful parks are the other attractions of Kishanganj. In the honour of martyrs of Kargil War, a park was constructed in the district called Kargil Park which draws an impressive number of tourists. Ruidhasa Maidan, a historic ground and Khagra Mela, an annual fair are the other popular places of interest in the district.