Tehri Garhwal district, a part of the Garhwal division is a district of Uttarakhand district with its administrative headquarters located at New Tehri town. The district got its name from its headquarters town. The name Tehri is derived from the term Trihari which means a place that washes away the three types of sins likewise sins born out of Mansa (mind), Vacha (speech) and Karmana (action). On the other hand the Hindi word Garh means fort. At a very early period i.e. before 888 AD, the region comprised 52 garhs and these garhs were under the rule of some independent kings. After sometime Kanakpal, the prince of Malwa merged all these garhs into one province. Slowly and gradually, Kanakpal Singh with his descendants occupied all the garhs and ruled over the whole of Garhwal Kingdom until 1803. After that Tehri Garhwal or at that time’s Garhwal Kingdom was a princely state ruled by the Parmar (Shah) dynasty. Then, it went under the Punjab Hill States Agency of British India, which consists of the today’s Tehri Garhwal district and a huge part of the Uttarkashi district. Earlier the ruler was given the title of raja, but after 1913, he was honoured with the title of Maharaja. Furthermore, the ruler was entitled to salutes of 11 guns and had a privy purse of rupees 300,000. Finally, the British came to this place and made Tehri Garhwal a princely state. At that time it was ruled by the Parmar (Shah) dynasty and later, it came under the Punjab Hill States Agency of British India. At last India got its independence in the year 1947 and after that Tehri Garhwal was emerged as a separate district in the map of Uttarakhand in 1949.
Geographically, the district lies at 30°38'N latitude, 78°42'E longitude and 1550 m altitude. In the year 2019, there was a total 56.73% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 3,642 sq km. and it is bounded by Uttarkashi district on the North, Pauri Garhwal district on the South, Rudraprayag district on the East and Dehradun district on the West. The climate of the district remains pleasant throughout the year. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 1060.3 mm in the year of 2019-2020.
Administration wise, the district is divided into 2 subdivisions namely Kirti Nagar and Tehri-Pratap Nagar. Moreover, it comprises 7 sub-districts, 7 towns and 1,862 villages. The administrative language in the district is Hindi.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 6,18,931 out of which 2,97,986 are males and 3,20,945 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 1077 (females for every 1000 males). During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate in the district was 2.35% including 0.95% are males and 3.67% are females. As per 2011 census the major religion in the district is Hindu with 98.53% of the total population. The population density in the district is 170 persons per sq. km. According to 2011 census the principal language in the district is Hindi with 98.42%. In the year 2018 the number of live births in the district was 14,264 including 7,554 were males and 6,710 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 2,500 including 1,519 were males and 981 were females.
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, rice, tea, maize, barley, tobacco, apples, pear, lime, plum, mango, papaya, potato, onion, peas, etc. The adoption of the new agricultural technologies amongst the famers of the district helps to increase the production of various agricultural items. Every year a huge chunk of revenue comes from the agricultural products in the district helps in its economy to a great extent. The district is rich in mineral resources. Magnetite, limestone, dolomite, tin, phosphate, marble, etc are the commonly found mineral resources in the district. Industrially, also the district is quite well developed. Some of its principal industries are flour mill, printing, soap manufacturing, steel furniture, glass, etc. In 2006 the Ministry of Panchayati Raj declared Tehri Garhwal as one of the country's 250 most backward districts and currently receiving funds from the Backward Regions Grant Fund Programme (BRGF). In the year 2016-17 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 6,47,262 lakh at current price and Rs. 5,32,788 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The net domestic product in the district during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 5,65,842 lakh at current price and Rs. 4,62,686 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, At Factor Cost in the district during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 83,662 at current price and Rs. 68,410 at constant prices in the year 2011-2012.
The district is well known as an abode of several reputed educational institutions. It provides a platform for higher education. As per 2011 census the literacy rate in the district is 76.36% including 89.76% are males and 64.28% are females. The total number of literates in the district is 4,07,994 including 2,27,406 are males and 1,80,588 are females.
Lieutenant General Madan Mohan Lakhera, a veteran Indian politician and the former Governor of the Mizoram was born in the year 1937 at Jakhand village in the Tehri Garhwal district. He has also served as the Lieutenant Governor of the Union Territory of Puducherry, the then Pondicherry from the year 2004 to 2006.
The district has several centres of attraction which allures many travellers from different parts of the country as well as world. Buda Kedar, situated at the meeting point of the Bal Ganga and Dharam Ganga rivers is associated with many interesting mythological stories. It is one of the most sacred places in the whole state of Uttarakhand. Narender Nagar, situated at a distance of 14 km. from Muni-ki-Reti in the district has the palace of the Tehri Raja in the mid of a forest. The place, Narendra Nagar provides mesmerising natural scenery of the River Ganga and the lovely Doon Valley. Kempti falls, located almost 15 km. away from Mussoorie on the Yamunotri road is surrounded by high mountains. It is a perfect destination for nature’s lovers. Some other notable places of interest in the district are Devprayag, Khatling Glacier, Sem Mukhem, Dhanaulti, Kunjapuri, Surkanda Devi, Chandrabadni, Nagtibba, etc.