|• Type||Municipal Corporation|
|• Body||Begusarai Municipal Corporation|
|• MLA||Kundan Kumar (BJP)|
|• Mayor||Pinki Devi|
|Elevation||41 m (135 ft)|
|• Additional official||Urdu|
|• Regional||Maithili (recognised under the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution of India)|
|Time zone||UTC+5:30 (IST)|
|Sex ratio||0.91 ♂/♀|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Begusarai|
|Vidhan Sabha constituency||Begusarai|
Begusarai is the industrial and financial capital of Bihar and the administrative headquarters of the Begusarai district, which is one of the 38 districts of the Indian state of Bihar. The district lies on the northern bank of the river Ganges in the Mithila region of India.
Begusarai was named after Begu, a man who was the devotee of Bari Durga Maharani and was the caretaker of Sarai, the town's old market.
Begusarai is located at . It has an average elevation of 41 metres (134 feet). Begusarai lies in North Bihar and is surrounded by Khagaria in the northeast, Munger in the southeast, Patna in the west, and Samastipur in the northwest.
Begusarai lies in the middle of the mid-Ganga plain and generally has low-lying terrain with a south to south-easterly slope. Begusarai is basically divided into three floodplains: the Ganga floodplain, Burhi Gandak floodplain, Kareha-Bagmati floodplain.
In 1989, Begusarai district became home to the Kanwar jheel, or Kanwar Lake Bird Sanctuary, with an area of 63 km2 (24.3 sq mi).
As per the 2011 census, Begusarai Municipal Corporation had a total population of 251,136, of whom 133,931 were male and 117,205 were female with a sex ratio of 875. The number of people under five years of age was 37,966. The literacy rate of people seven years and up was 79.35%.
Hinduism is the major religion in Begusarai city, with 224,282 followers (89%). Islam is second, with 26,531 Muslims (10.53%). Other religions include 325 Christians (0.13%), 134 Sikhs (0.05%), 31 Jains (0.01%), 29 Buddhists (0.01%), 14 other religions (0.01%), and 662 (0.26%) that did not answer.
Begusarai has traditionally been a communist stronghold and was once referred to as the "Leningrad of Bihar". It is the location of the independence movement veteran, first chief minister, and one of the architects of modern Bihar, Shri Krishna Sinha.
Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy. The main crops of the Begusarai district are oilseeds, anise seeds, tobacco, jutes, potatos, red chilis, tomatoes, and rape-seeds. In fruits, Begusarai has recently become a major contributor in producing litchi, mango, guava, and banana. Basil leaves and pearl farming are also present in the local area.
Even today, only the Barauni refinery contributes around Rs 500 crore (5,000,000,000) to the state exchequer yearly. Begusarai also has an inactive airport in Begusarai Ulao. Begusarai had the second highest per capita income in the financial year of 2019–2020 in Bihar, after Patna.
The culture of Begusarai is the cultural heritage of Mithila. Begusarai is famous for Simaria, a fair of devotional significance every year usually during November in the month of Kartik, according to the Indian Panchang. Men and women in Begusarai dress for the festivals; the costumes of Begusarai stem from the traditional culture of Mithila. Panjabi Kurta and Dhoti have a Mithila Painting bordered maroon coloured Gamchha, the Symbol of Passion, Love, Bravery, and Courage, are common clothing items for men. Men wear gold rings in their nose, which symbolizes prosperity, happiness, and wealth following Lord Vishnu. They also wear Balla on their wrist. In ancient times, there was no colour option in Mithila, so the Maithil women wore white or yellow sari with a red border. Today, they wear Laal-Paara (the traditional red-boarded white or yellow sari) on some special occasions, as well as Shakha-Pola, with lahthi in their hand. In Mithila culture, this represents new beginnings, passion and prosperity.[original research] Red also represents the Hindu goddess Durga, a symbol of new beginnings and feminine power.[original research] During Chhaith, the women of Begusarai wear pure cotton dhoti without stitching which reflects the pure, traditional culture of Mithila. Usually crafted from pure cotton for daily use and from pure silk for more glamorous occasions, traditional attire for women of Begusarai includes Jamdani, Banorisi, and Bhagalpuri, among others. Many festivals are celebrated throughout the year in Begusarai, including Chhaith and Durga Puja.
Dhuno-Naach is the dance of Begusarai, Mithila. Dhuno-Naach is performed in Begusarai, Khagaria, Katihar, and Naugachia during Durga Puja, and Kalipuja with sounds from Shankha-Dhaak and Jhijhiya is performed in Darbhanga, Muzaffarpur, Madhubani and their neighbour districts.
In Mithila, painting is a form of wall art and is practiced widely in Begusarai. The artform originated among the villages in Begusarai, Darbhanga, Naugachia, and Madhubani, while more contemporary paintings known as Begusarai art, Maduhubani art, Darbhnga art, and Naugachia art are on paper and canvas.
Here is a list of the main festivals of Begusarai: