Neemuch district, a part of Ujjain division is a district of Madhya Pradesh state with its administrative headquarters located at Neemuch town. There are some stories associated with the name of the district. Some of its natives believe that Neemuch got its name from the plentiful neem trees in the area. Others opine that originally, the name of the district was ‘Meenuch’ which was derived from the Meena caste, the first people of the town but with the passage of time its previous name got transferred to ‘Neemuch’. However, the most widely held view is that it got its name from the abbreviation of the "North India Mounted Artillery and Cavalry Headquarters". Earlier, Neemuch, Manasa and Jawad tehsils was a part of Mandsaur district but all these three were carved out from the Mandsaur district and emerged as separate districts on 30th June, 1998. The district headquarters, Neemuch was a cantonment town during the period of British rule and at that time it was popularly known as the North India Mounted Artillery and Cavalry Headquarters (NIMACH). Later, in the year 1939 it was transformed into the headquarters of the Crown's Representative Police Force.
Geographically, the district lies at 24°47'N latitude, 74°87'E longitude and 452 m Altitude. In the year 2021, there was a total 18.54% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 4,256 sq km. and in terms of geographical area it occupies the ranks of 41st in the state and 284th in India. It is bounded by Rajasthan state on the north and west and Mandsaur district on the east and south. The climate of the district remains pleasant throughout the year and its nights are even more pleasant. Most of its rainfall occurs n the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 1348.6 mm in the year of 2021-22.
Administration wise, the district is divided into 4 tehsils namely Neemuch, Jiran, Jawad and Manasa. There are 1 Lok Sabha seat and 3 Assembly constituencies in the district. Moreover, the district comprises 5 sub-districts, 10 towns and 798 villages. The administrative language in the district is Hindi.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 8,26,067 including 4,22,653 are males and 4,03,414 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 954 females for every 1000 males. During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate in the district was 13.77% out of which 13.49% were males and 14.07% were females. The population density in the district is 194 persons per sq. km. In the year 2020 the number of live births in the district was 13,731 out of which 7,146 were males and 6,585 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 6,160 out of which 3,698 were males and 2,462 were females. As per 2011 census the major religion in the district is Hindu with 89.74% of the total population. According to 2011 census the principal language in the district is Hindi with 96.85%.
Agriculture is the backbone of the economy of the district. The chief agricultural products in the district are wheat, groundnut, garlic, poppy seeds, maize, gram, soyabean, mustard, 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 scantily industrialised but some small scale industries of handloom weaving and cooking oil mills are available in the district. It is one of the largest producers of opium in the world. Even, the climate of the Neemuch district is also suitable for the production of opium plant and thus the opium trade is one of the major occupations in the region. In the year 2019-20 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 11,68,763 lakhs at current price and Rs. 6,53,951 lakhs at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The net domestic product in the district during the period 2019-20 was Rs. 10,80,203 lakh at current price and Rs. 5,86,990 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, At Factor Cost during the period 2019-20 was Rs. 1,14,563 at current price and Rs. 62,254 at constant prices in the year 2011-2012.
The district is an abode of several reputed educational institutions. It provides a platform for higher education. Some of its recognised government educational institutions are Govt M.G College (Jawad), Govt PG College, Govt PG College (Rampura), Govt Ramchandra Vishwanath College (Manasa), Shri Sitaram Jaju Govt Girls College, Govt College (Singoli) etc. As per 2011 census the literacy rate in the district is 70.8% including 83.91% are males and 57.13% are females.
Sunder Lal Patwa, an eminent Indian politician who served as the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh for twice i.e. from 20th January, 1980 to 17th February, 1980 as member of Janata Party and from 5th March, 1990 to 15th December, 1992 as member of Bharatiya Janta Party was born on 11th November, 1924 at Kukreshwar in the district.
The district has several centres of attraction which allures numerous travellers from different parts of the country as well as world. Sukhanandji Ashram, situated 32 km. away from Nimach on the border of Rajasthan in an ancient rock-cave has a temple of Lord Shiva. The place is full of mesmerising natural sceneries and a spring of constant water. Natives of the district believe that Suka, the son of the great saint Vedavyasa founded the place. Nova Toran temple, located at a village named Khor in the district is a marvellous temple of 11th century temple which consists of a statue of Varaha at its centre. Gandhi Sagar Sanctuary, a wildlife sanctuary located on the northern portion of Mandsaur and Nimach districts is spread over an area of 368.62 sq km. Moreover, this wild life sanctuary is rich in variety of fauna and flora. Morwan Dam, situated at a distance of 24 km. from Neemuch is a dam created on the river Gambhiri and mainly used for the purposes of irrigation and water supply to nearby areas. Some other notable places of interest in the district are Gandhi Sagar Dam, Bhadva Mata Temple, Shri Kileshwar Mahadev Temple, Harkiyakhal Dam, Veer Park, Naagbawdi Boating House, etc.