Mahesana is a district of Gujarat state with its administrative headquarters located at Mahesana city. During the era of the Puranas it has been mentioned as "Aanart" or "Aparant" region in the Skand Purana and Pharmaranya Purana. As per legends the golden ages of the district are Mauryan age, Post Mauryan age, Gupta Age, Chalukya period, Sultnate age, Mughals, Marathas and Gaekwad. According to the distinguished poet Jaisinh Brahmbhatt, the Mehasana city was founded by Mesaji Chavda, a Rajput from the Chavda dynasty. At that time Mesaji Chavda built the famous temple of Goddess Toran in Vikram Samvat and therefore on the 10th day of the Bhadarva month in 1358 AD the Mahesana city was established. Later, Mehasana became the capital of the Gaekwads. As per another legend, Mehsaji established the place in Vikram Samvat 1375. Then Gaekwads occupied Baroda and later established the Baroda State. Slowly and gradually they spread their rule in north Gujarat and made Patan as its administrative headquarters. After some time the headquarters was shifted to Kadi and subsequently to Mehsana in 1902. Mahesana district came into existence in the year 1932. After India got its independence it was merged with Bombay and after the bifurcation of Bombay state into Gujarat and Maharashtra it came under the Gujarat in 1960.
It is now used as a district court. Baroda state was merged with India after independence in 1947. It was included in Bombay state. Later became part of Gujarat in 1960 after partition of Bombay state into Gujarat and Maharashtra. Now Mehsana is a standalone district in north Gujarat.
Narendra Damodardas Modi, an eminent Indian politician and the 15th i.e. current Prime Minister of India was born on 17th September, 1950 at Vadnagar in the district. He was also served as the 14th chief minister of Gujarat (7th October, 2001-22nd May, 2014). Modi is one of the prominent leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Geographically, the district lies at 23°59'N latitude, 72°37'E longitude and 81 m Altitude. In the year 2019, there was a total 3.60% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 4,401 sq km. and in terms of geographical area it occupies the ranks of 16th in the state and 267th in India. It is bounded by Banaskantha district on the north, Patan and Surendranagar districts on west, Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad districts on south and Sabarkantha district on the east. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 849.4 mm in the year of 2019-20.
Administration wise, the district is divided into 11 talukas namely Becharaji, Kadi, Kheralu, Mahesana, Vadnagar, Vijapur, Visnagar, Satlasana, Jotana, Gozaria and Unjha. There are 1 Lok Sabha seat and 7 Assembly constituencies in the district. Moreover, the district comprises 10 towns and 606 villages. The administrative language in the district is Gujarati.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 20,35,064 including 10,56,520 are males and 9,78,544 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 926 females for every 1000 males. During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate in the district was 10.73% out of which 10.76% were males and 10.69% were females. The population density in the district is 462 persons per sq. km. In the year 2018 the number of live births in the district was 34,527 including 18,180 were males and 16,347 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district is 14,537 including 8,635 were males and 5,902 were females. As per 2011 census the major religion in the district is Hindu with 92.66% of the total population. According to 2011 census the principal language in the district is Gujarati with 97.58%.
The district is full of many big industries. Engineering Industry (mainly metallurgical industries) and Food and Agro processing industry of the district attracts many investors to make investments. There many chemical industries in the district which produces a range of products like synthetic detergents, soap bars, Sulphuric acid, shampoo, toothpaste, etc. Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC) and Oil division of Essar Group are the foremost petroleum companies in the district. Some of its population earns their livelihood from the agricultural sector. The chief agricultural products produced in the district are wheat, castor seeds, cotton, potatoes, tomatoes, citrus, okra, mango, fennel seed, cumin, etc. The adoption of the new agricultural technologies amongst the farmers of the district helps to increase the production of various agricultural items. The district is also rich in mineral resources include china clay, granite, limestone, building stone and fire clay which contributes in its economy to a great extent.
Ganpat University, a reputed deemed university in the district offers courses in various disciplines such as engineering, pharmacy, management, and computers. Most of the colleges in the district are affiliated to this university. The district has a number of recognised engineering institutions namely Sakalchand Patel College of Engineering, Saffrony Institute of Technology, Ganpat University, Unjha Engineering College, Marchant Institute of Technology, Government Engineering College, Sardar Patel Institute of Technology, Gujarat Power Energy Institute of Technology, etc. As per 2011 census the literacy rate in the district is 83.61% including 91.39% are males and 75.32% are females.
Jivabhai Ambalal Patel, a well known Indian politician and a member of the 14th Lok Sabha from the Mehsana constituency was born on 30th April, 1938 at Mehsana city. He is a member of the Indian National Congress. A. K. Patel, a renowned Indian politician and a minister of state for chemicals and fertilizers in Atal Bihari Vajpayee government from 1998 to 1999 was born in 1931 at Vadu in the Mehsana district. He was a senior leader of Gujarat Bharatiya Janata Party.
The district has numerous centres of attraction with religious and historical significance which allures many travellers from different parts of the country as well as world. Sun Temple, a marvellous temple is located at Modhera in the district. Rani Udaymati Vav in the district is an architectural wonder with largest step wells. Some extraordinary images of Hindu Gods and their incarnations are carved in the walls of this place. Shanku Water Park in the district is the first and one of the largest recreation parks in India. Thol Wildlife Sanctuary is a core place of interest in the district. Some other notable tourist spots in the district are Runi Teerth, Shri Bhoyani Teerth, Shri Aglod Teerth, Ghambu Teerth, Shri Nandasan Teerth, Shri Agam Mandir Teerth, etc.