Patiala district is a district of Punjab state with its administrative headquarters located at Patiala city. There is a belief that in about 1721 the place Patiala was founded by two friends namely Ala Sing Sidhu, a Sikh Jat and Lakhna Dogar, a Muslim. At the very beginning there were only 24 villages under their rule but later they kept on adding some more nearby regions by conquering them. From the starting period of the Patiala State until 1857, the Raja of the place was a Sikh, i.e. from the family of Ala Sing Sidhu on the other hand the Army Commander was a Muslim i.e. from the family of Lakhna Dogar which probably because of an oral understanding or an agreement might be made between the two founders of the place. A Jat ruler named Maharaja Narendra Singh ruled the place; Patiala from the period of 1845 to 1862. During his period he secured the city by creating ramparts and ten gates around it. The Patiala district came into existence in the year 1919.
Rakesh Sharma, the first and till date the only Indian national to flew into space in 1984 was born on 13th January, 1949 at the Patiala city. The Government of India honoured him by the highest bravery award i.e. the Ashoka Chakra for his space mission.
Geographically, the district lies at 30033' N latitude, 76040' E longitude and 300 m altitude. In the year 2019, there was a total 2.25% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 3,325 sq km. and it is bounded by Fatehgarh Sahib District of Punjab and Rupnagar district of Chandigarh on the North, Kaithal district of Haryana on the South, Ambala district and Kurukshetra district of Haryana on the East and Sangrur district on the West. The climate of the district remains extremely hot in the summer and cold in the winter. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 813.7 mm in the year of 2018-19.
Administration wise, the district is divided into 5 tehsils namely Patran, Nabha, Patiala, Rajpura and Samana. Moreover, it comprises 12 towns and 895 villages. The administrative language in the district is Punjabi.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 18,95,686 including 10,02,522 are males and 8,93,164 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 891 females for every 1000 males. During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate in the district was 2.75% out of which 1.53% were males and 4.15% were females. The population density in the district is 570 persons per sq. km. In the year 2017 the number of live births in the district was 28,740 including 14,703 were males and 14,037 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 12,867 including 7,551 were males and 5,316 were females. As per 2011 census the major religions in the district are Sikh and Hindu with 55.91% and 41.32% of the total population. According to 2011 census the principal language in the district is Punjabi with 89.61%.
Agriculture is the backbone of the economy of the district. Most of the lands in the district are use for agricultural purposes. More than half of its population are engaged in agriculture in order to earn their livelihood. The chief agricultural products in the district are wheat, barley, paddy, maize, sugarcane, etc. The adoption of the new agricultural technologies amongst the farmers of the district helps to increase the production of various agricultural items. Industrially also, it is one of the fastest growing districts of the Punjab state. The principal industrial products produced in the district includes small cutting tools, power cables, bicycles, agriculture implements, milk products, pesticides, etc. The district has some core industrial areas namely Rajpura, Dera Bassi, Patiala, Samana and Nabha. Every year a huge chunk of revenue comes from these industries helps in its economy to a great extent. In the year 2016-17 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 29,38,830 lakh at current price and Rs. 24,25,126 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. In the year 2016-17 the net domestic product in the district was Rs. 26,37,915 lakh at current price and Rs. 21,64,451 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, At Factor Cost in the district during the year 2016-17 was Rs. 1,26,035 at current price and Rs. 1,03,414 at constant prices in the year 2011-2012.
Patiala was emerged as an important seat of learning, soon after India got its independence in 1947. The district is an abode of several reputed educational institutions likewise Thapar University, Punjabi University, Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, General Shivdev Singh Diwan Gurbachan Singh Khalsa College, Mohindra College, Multani Mal Modi College, Rajindra Hospital, Government Medical College, etc. As per 2011 census the literacy rate in the district is 75.28% out of which 80.2% are males and 69.8% are females.
Captain Amarinder Singh, an illustrious Indian politician and the 15th Chief Minister of Punjab was born on 11th March, 1942 at Patiala city. At present he is a member of the 16th Lok Sabha from the Amritsar constituency. He is a member of the Indian National Congress.
During the year 2018, there were 8,24,193 domestic tourists and 4,380 foreign tourists who visited the district. The district has several centres of attraction which allures many travellers from different parts of the country as well as world. The Bahadurgarh Fort, located at a distance of 6 kms from the Patiala city was for the first time created by Nawab Saif Khan in 1658 A.D. But later in the year 1837 it was modified by Maharaja Karam Singh, a Sikh ruler. It took a long time period of eight years to complete. Baradari Gardens situated in the northern part of the Patiala city was made during the reign of Maharaja Rajindera Singh. The garden has varieties of rare trees, herbs and a marble statue of Maharaja Rajindera Singh. The Qila Mubarak complex, located in the centre of the city covers an area of 10-acre and it contains the main palace called Qila Androon, the guesthouse called Ran Baas and the Darbar Hall. Some other notable places of interest in the district are Gurdwara Dukh Niwaran Sahib, Gurdwara Moti Bagh Sahib, Sheesh Mahal, National Institute of Sports, etc.