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HAZARIBAGH, a town and district of India, in the Chota Nagpur division of Bengal. The town is well situated at an elevation of 2000 ft. Pop. (1901) 15,799. Hazaribagh has ceased to be a military cantonment since the European penitentiary was abolished. There are a central jail and a reformatory school. The Dublin University Mission maintains a First Arts college.

The DISTRICT comprises an area of 7021 sq. m. In 1901 the population was 1,177,961, showing an increase of i% in the decade. The physical formation of Hazaribagh exhibits three distinct features: (i) a high central plateau occupying the western section, the surface of which is undulating and cultivated; (2) a lower and more extensive plateau stretching along the north and eastern portions; to the north, the land is well cultivated, while to the east the country is of a more varied character, the elevation is lower, and the character of a plateau is gradually lost; (3) the central valley of the Damodar river occupying the entire southern section. Indeed, although the characteristics of the district are rock, hill and wide-spreading jungle, fine patches of cultivation are met with in all parts, and the scenery is generally pleasing and often striking. The district forms a part of the chain of high land which extends across the continent of India, south of the Nerbudda on the west, and south of the Sone river on the east. The most important river is the Damodar, with its many tributaries, which drains an area of 2480 sq. m.

The history of the district is involved in obscurity until 1755, about which time a certain Mukund Singh was chief of the country. In a few years he was superseded by Tej Singh, who had gained the assistance of the British. In 1780 Hazaribagh, along with the surrounding territory, passed under direct British rule.

The district contains an important coal-field at Giridih which supplies the East Indian railway. There are altogether six mines. There are also mica mines which are gaining in importance. Rice and oilseeds are the principal crops. Tea cultivation has been tried but does not flourish, and is almost extinct. The only railways are the branch of the East Indian to the coalfield at Giridih, where there is a technical school maintained by the railway company, and the newly-opened Gaya-Katrasgarh chord line; but the district is traversed by the Grand Trunk road. Parasnath hill is annually visited by large numbers of Jain worshippers.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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