Saran District is a district of Bihar state with its administrative head quarters located at Chhapra town India. In the Ain-E-Akbari records the name of Saran is mentioned as one of the six Revenue Divisions constituting the province of Bihar. In 1765 during the period of the grant of Diwani to the British East India Company, there were eight Sarkars including Saran and Champaran. Later Saran and Champaran both were combined to form a single unit called Saran. At the very beginning in 1829 Saran was a part of the Patna division. Again in 1908 Saran became a part of Tirhut division. The current Saran district was formed after the separation of Siwan and Gopalganj district. There are different theories regarding the name of the district. According to General Cunningham, earlier the Saran district was popularly known as Saran or asylum which was the name a Stupa (Pillar) built by emperor Ashoka. Some other believes that the district got its name from Saranga-Aranya or the deer forest since the district was well known for its wide expanses of forest and deer in prehistoric times.
Bhikari Thakur, a distinguished Indian play wright, lyricist, actor, folk dancer, folk singer and social activist in Bhojpuri language was born on 18th December, 1897 at Kutubpur in the Saran district. He was popularly known as the "Shakespeare of Bhojpuri". Some of his famous works are Bidesiya, Beti-Bechwa, Bhai-Birod, Kalyuga Prem, Radhesyam Behar, etc.
Geographically, the district lies at 26°05'N latitude, 84°63'E longitude and 64 m Altitude. In the year 2021, there was a total 2.25% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 2,641 sq. km. and it is bounded by Gopalganj district and Siwan district on the north, Muzaffarpur district on the north east, Bhojpur district and Patna district on the south east, Uttar Pradesh state on the west and Vaishali district on the east. The climate of the district remains extremely hot during the summers. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 1488.0 mm in the year of 2021-22.
Administration wise, the district has 3 sub-divisions namely Chhapra, Marhawrah and Sonepur which are further divided into 21 developmental blocks. There are 2 Lok Sabha and 10 Assembly constituencies in the district. Moreover, the district comprises 6 towns and 1,764 villages. The administrative language in the district is Hindi.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 39,51,862 including 20,22,821 are males and 19,29,041 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 944 females for 1000 males. During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate in the district was 21.64% out of which 22.40% were males and 20.86% were females. As per 2011 census the major religions in the district are Hindu and Muslim with 89.45% and 10.28% of the total population. The population density in the district is 1,496 persons per sq. km. According to 2011 census the principal language in the district is Hindi with 97.69%. In the year 2020 the number of live births in the district was 96,145 out of which 51,310 were males and 44,819 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 17,781 out of which 11,103 were males and 6,673 were females.
The economy of the district is solely dependent on agriculture. Some of its chief agricultural products are paddy, wheat, sugarcane, pulses, oil seeds, potato, maize, etc. The adaptability of its farmer to the new agricultural technologies and ideas help to increase the production level of the agricultural items. Every year a huge chunk of revenue comes from these agricultural products. Almost all people of the district are engaged in the agriculture since it is scantily industrialized. Only a few sugar factories are found in it which as well helps in its economy to some extent. It is one of the 36 most backward districts in Bihar and currently receiving funds from the Backward Regions Grant Fund Programme. In the year 2011-12 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 6,54,333 lakh at current price and Rs. 4,01,151 lakh at constant prices in the year 2004-05. In the year 2011-12 net domestic product in the district was Rs. 5,87,569 lakh at current price and Rs. 3,55,513 lakh at constant prices in the year 2004-05.
There are numerous schools and colleges in the district. Some of its reputed educational institutions are Dr. Prabhu Nath Singh Degree College, Purvottar Railway College, Lok Mahavidyalaya, Deoraha Baba Sridhar Das Degree College, Siwan Engineering and Technical Institute, etc. As per 2011 census the literacy rate in the district is 65.96% including 77.03% are males and 54.42% are females. The number of literates in the district is 21,57,454 out of which 12,85,767 were males and 8,71,687 were females.
Jayaprakash Narayan, an eminent Indian independence activist, social reformer and political leader was born on 11st October, 1902 at Sitabdiara in the Saran district. He was famous as Lok Nayak meaning the people's hero. He was honoured by many prestigious awards namely Bharat Ratna in 1999, Rashtrabhushan Award and Ramon Magsaysay Award in 1965.
There are several places of interest in Saran district which allures numerous travellers from different parts of the world. Tourism in Saran district offers its visitors the exploring opportunities of various ancient and religious sites. Aami, situated at a distance of 37 km. of Chhapra is believe that in ancient periods there was a Dirgh Dwar near present Dighwara Railway station since with the passage of time the place came to be known as Dighwara. Amba as than, an ancient temple is the identity of the place Aami. Sonepur is well known for its large cattle fair held every year on the occasion of Kartik Purnima. It has also several temples dedicated to Lord Shiva and Goddess Kali. Dhorh Ashram, situated towards north of Parsagarh has many structures of archaeological importance and a renowned temple of Bhagwan Dhadheswarnath. Gautam Asthan, located 5 km. away from Chhapra is the ashram of Gautam Rishi. Silhauri is a place in the district with religious significance. A big mela in this place organises every year on the occasion of Shivaratri.