Jabalpur district, a part of Jabalpur division is a district of Madhya Pradesh state with its administrative headquarters located at Jabalpur city. The district got its name from the headquarters city i.e. Jabalpur. The name of the city is taken from the great sage Jaabaali, whose name is mentioned in the epic Ramayana. Natives of the place believe that it was tapasya-bhoomi of Jaabaali meaning the place of penance. As per the Bhedaghat folklore, once upon a time there was a small cave located on the bank of the Narmada River where the sage Jaabaali had his ashram. The name of the place was varied during different periods of time, which include Jabalipuram, Jubbulgarh and Jubbulpore (under the British Rule). Again, the Jabalpur Municipal Corporation renamed the city as Jabalipuram in 2006. The place was ruled by different notable dynasties at different points of time such as Maurya Empire, Satavahana dynasty, Gupta Empire, Kalachuri dynasty, Gond rulers, Maratha and finally British. During the rule of the Gondwana king called Raje Madan Shah Madawi of Mandla, (reigned 1138 to 1157 CE) constructed a clock tower on the small hilltop fort at Madan Mahal, located in the present day’s Jabalpur district. In the 1500s, Sangram, the Gond King, married to Rani Durgavati and built the Singaurgarh fort in Sangrampur situated near the Garha in Jabalpur. Rani Durgawati was a brave warrior of Gond Dynasty and a significant figure in the history of this place who dug almost 85 ponds in Jabalpur mainly Ranital, Haathital, Madhatal and Hanumantal. In about 1781 the Maratha rulers of Sagar, captured the place and started to rule over it. When the British Raj was at its peak point, the name of the place became Jubbulpore and made it the capital of the Saugor and Nerbudda Territories.
Pandit Ajay Pohankar, an illustrious Indian classical vocalist was born on 24th February, 1947 at Jabalpur city. In the year 2012, he was conferred the most prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for performing artists.
Geographically, the district lies at 23°17'N latitude, 79°94'E longitude and 411 m Altitude. In the year 2021, there was a total 21.14% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 5,211 sq km. and in terms of geographical area it occupies the ranks of 31st in the state and 208st in India. It is bounded by Katni district on the North, Seoni district on the South, Dindori district on the East, Umaria district on the North East, Mandla district on the South East, Narsimhapur district on the South West and Damoh district on the North West. The climate of the district can be characterised as humid sub tropical climate. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 859.0 mm in the year of 2021-22.
Administration wise, the district is divided into 7 tehsils namely Jabalpur, Kundam, Majholi, Panagar, Patan, Shahpura and Sihora. There are 1 Lok Sabha seat and 8 Assembly constituencies in the district. Moreover, the district comprises 7 sub-districts, 24 towns and 1,424 villages. The administrative language in the district is Hindi.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 24,63,289 out of which 12,77,278 are males and 11,86,011 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 929 females for every 1000 males. During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate in the district was 14.51% including 13.30% were males and 15.83% were females. The population density in the district is 473 persons per sq. km. In the year 2020 the number of live births in the district was 44,801 out of which 23,235 were males and 21,566 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 25,623 out of which 15,612 were males and 10,011 were females. As per 2011 census the major religion in the district is Hindu with 87.65% of the total population. According to 2011 census the principal language in the district is Hindi with 94.34%.
Both the agriculture and ordnance factories of the district share its economy. The alluvial soil of the Narmada basin in the district is very favourable for the growth of its agricultural products. The chief agricultural products in the district are paddy, maize, different types of pulses, ginger, wheat, gram, pea, lentil, mustard, soybean, linseed, spices, mango, guava, etc. The adoption of the new agricultural technologies amongst the farmers of the district helps to increase the production of various agricultural items. There are several ordnance factories in the district likewise Vehicle Factory Jabalpur, Grey Iron Foundry, Gun Carriage Factory Jabalpur, Ordnance Factory Khamaria which manufactures bullets, howitzers, rockets, bombs, mortars, grenades, shells, trucks, mine-protected vehicles, bulletproof vehicles, etc. These ordnance factories provide enormous employment facilities to its locals. Some other principal industries in the district are Electrical Goods, limestone industries, bidi manufacturing, food processing industry, saw mills, commercial automobile, etc. Every year a huge chunk of revenue comes from these ordnance factories helps in its economy to a great extent. In the year 2019-20 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 42,53,616 lakhs at current price and Rs. 28,68,115 lakhs at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The net domestic product in the district during the period 2019-20 was Rs. 38,13,180 lakh at current price and Rs. 25,09,335 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, At Factor Cost during the period 2019-20 was Rs. 1,35,620 at current price and Rs. 89,248 at constant prices in the year 2011-2012.
Jabalpur provides a platform for higher education. The first technical institution in central India named Jabalpur Engineering College was established in Jabalpur city by the British. One of the most recognised educational institutions in the district is the Indian Institute of Information Technology, Design and Manufacturing, founded in the year 2005. As per 2011 census the literacy rate in the district is 81.07% out of which 87.29% are males and 74.37% are females.
Seth Govind Das, a distinguished freedom fighter, eminent Indian politician and a member of 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Lok Sabha from the Jabalpur constituency was born on 16th October, 1896 at Jabalpur city. He was also honoured by the prestigious Padma Bhushan Award in 1961.
The district has several centres of attraction which allures many travellers from different parts of the country as well as world. The Madan Mahal Fort, situated at the Jabalpur district was constructed on the top of a rocky hill by the Raja Madan Shah of Gond tribe in the year 1116. Visitors come to this fort to enjoy a mesmerising view of the town and the country-side around it. Tilwaraghat of the district is the place where the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi were immersed in the Narmada River. The place has also a wonderful and an ancient temple called Mala Devi Mandir, built in the 12th century. The Jabalpur district has a waterfall named Dhuandhar since the plunge of water comes in it has a great force that creates a sound like roar and which can be heard very clearly from a far distance. Rani Durgawati Museum and Memorial, named after the great Queen Durgawati is dedicated to her memory. Moreover, there is a fine collection of inscriptions, sculptures and prehistoric relics.