Sivasagar, the historical city of Assam, was the capital of Ahoms who ruled over Assam for more than 600 years. During the time of Ahoms, Sivasagar was known as “Rangpur”. However, when Ahom Dynasty was over, Sivasagar was spelled as Sibsagar, “The Ocean of Lord Shiva”. There is an interesting story associated with the name of the place Sivasagar. Siba Singha, a veteran Ahom king, and his wife Ambika was great worshiper of Lord Shiva. They excavated the famous Sivasagar tank in 1733 and also built the Siva Dol (Dol means three temples in Assamese), Vishnu Dol and Devi Dol which are situated on the bank of Borpukhuri Tank in the heart of the Sivasagar town. For this reason the Sivasagar got its name, which was named after Lord Shiva. Sivasagar or Rongpur (earlier) was the capital of the Ahom Kingdom from 1699 to 1788. The renowned Joysagar Tank was excavated within only 45 days by Rudra Singha (1696-1714) in memory of his mother named Joymoti Kunwari. The remarkable Joy Dol is located on the bank of the Joysagar Tank. On the other hand, Pramatta Singha (1744-1751) made the Ranghar with bricks in the year 1745. Rajeshwar Singha (1751-1769) constructed the Kareng Ghar at Gargaon in the district. Sukapha, the first Ahom king established his capital at Charaideo in the year 1253. Charaideo, situated at a distance of about 28 km. from Sivasagar is well known for a cluster of Maidams (royal graveyards). On 24th February, 1826, the treaty of Yandaboo consolidated the British occupation of Assam which also made an end to the six hundred year long Ahom rule in Assam as well as in the district. Finally, after the annexation of Purandar Singha’s dominion of the upper Assam, Sivasagar was emerged as a separate district in the year 1839.
Many famous personalities were born in the soil of Sivasagar. Among themthe notables are Hemchandra Baruah and Joymoti Kuwari who made the natives of Sivasagar proud. Hemchandra Baruah, the son of Mukta Ram Baruah, was a prominent writer and a social reformer of Assamese society of the 19th century. Although he wrote many books but his masterpiece was the first Assamese-English Dictionary “Hemkosh” which was published in 1900 after his death. This dictionary is the base of Assamese language till date. Another well-known figure of Assam is Joymoti Kuwari. She was born at Mechagarh of Sivasagar district. She was the wife of Ahom prince Godapani. Joymoti was called sati Joymoti by the natives of Assam because of her love and devotion towards her husband. Her son, Rudra Singha, dug the famous Joysagar tank within 45 days and built a Joy Dol at the bank of the tank at Joysagar in the memory of his mother.
Sivasagar is located in the upper part of Assam. Geographically, Sibsagar lies at 26°98'N latitudes, 94°63'E longitudes and 32 m Altitude. In the year 2021, there was a total 26.24% forest area of total geographical area.Sivasagar district covers a geographical area of 2,668 sq km. Nature has bounded Sivasagar district from all four sides-the Brahmaputra River on the north, the Nagaland on the south, the Dihing River on the east, and the Janji River on the west. Almost throughout the year the weather of Sivasagar remains pleasant. The regular rain during the summer season prevents the district from extreme hot weather. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 1596.2 mm in the year of 2021-22.
To administer in a smooth way the district is divided intothree sub-divisions are Sivasagar, Charaideo and Nazira. Sivasagar district has nine tehsils namely Amguri, Gaurisagar, Sivasagar, Demow, Nazira, Hapekhati, Lakowa, West Abhayapuri and Sonari. The district comprises only one lok sabha constituency i.e. Jorhat. There are total five assembly seats in the district such as Amguri, Sivasagar, Thowra, Nazira and Mahmora. Moreover it has 7 towns and 875 villages. The administrative languages in the district are Assamese and English.
As per 2011 census, the population of Sivasagar district is 11,51,050 out of which 5,89,216 are male and5,61,834 are female. The district has a sex ratio of 954 (females per 1000 males) and child ratio of 960 (females per 1000 males). During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate of the district was 9.44% including 8.02% were males and 10.98% were females. Sivasagar has its own distinct identity because there is a mixture of different race, caste, language and religion. According to the 2011 census, the major religion in the district is Hindu with 87.51%of the total population. The population density in the district is 431 (persons per sq. km.). As per 2011 census the principal language in the district is Assamese with 84.26%. In the year 2020 the number of live births in the district was 18,781 out of which 9,771 were males and 9,010 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 5,312 out of which 2,777 were males and 2,535 were females.
The large size of economy of Sivasagar is driven by agriculture. The core agricultural items are rice, pulses and various seasonal vegetables. The major industries of Sivasagar are oil industry such as ONGC, Oil India limited and tea industries (both public and private enterprises). The soil texture of the district is alluvial which is suitable for tea cultivation. In the year 2018-19 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 16,02,835 lakhs at current price and Rs. 12,67,143 lakhs at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The net domestic product in the district during the period 2007-08 was Rs. 4,55,705 lakh at current price and Rs. 2,76,647 lakh at constant prices in the year 1999-2000. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, At Factor Cost during the period 2018-19 was Rs. 1,61,348 at current price and Rs. 1,23,063 at constant prices in the year 2011-2012.
The literacy rate of the district is 80.41% out of which 85.84% are males and 74.71% are females as per 2011 census. The total number of literates in the district is 8,13,505 including 4,44,767 are males and 3,68,738 are females. The total number of illiterates in the district is 3,37,545 including 1,44,449 are males and 1,93,096 are females.Some important educational institutions of the district are Sibsagar Girls College; Sibsagar College, Joysagar; Amguri College; Janji College; Charing College and Moran College.
Pranati Phukan is an illustrious figure among those women who are in leadership position of politics of Assam. She was in the portfolio of handloom, textile, sericulture and cultural misnister of Assam till 18th January 2015 from Naharkatia constituency of Dibrugarh district. She was born on 24th April 1963 at Maduri Gaon, Nazira of Sivasagar district. She is a member of the Indian National Congress. Promode Gogoi , the another great politician of Sivasagar district. He was born on 29th September 1930 in Sivasagar and a member of Legislative Assembly of Assam for five terms. He also served as the minister of flood control and irrigation of Assam from 1996 till 2001.
Sivasagar is full of historical monuments which allures a number of tourists every year. Thedistrict is famous for Talatal Ghar and Rang Ghar. Ahom king Paramatta Singha built the Rang Ghar amphitheatre with bricks in 1745. Rajeshwar Singha built the Kareng Ghar in Gorgaon. In 1253, Shukaphaa, the first Ahom king, built Charaideo which is famous for maidams. Charaideo is 28 km. from Sivasagar town. Shiva Dol in Sivasagar is one of the major pilgrimage centres in India. Besides the Shiva Dol other two Dols are Devi Dol and Bishnu Dol. These Dols are also an important centre of attraction for the travellers. Festivals of the district are very unique.