The Barabanki district is one of four districts of Faizabad division, lies at the very heart of Awadh region of Uttar Pradesh state of India, and forms as it were a centre from which no less than seven other districts radiate. It is situated between 27°19' and 26°30' north latitude, and 80°05' and 81°51’ east longitude; it runs in a south-easterly direction, confined by the nearly parallel streams of the Ghagra and Gomti. With its most northern point it impinges on the Sitapur district, while its north-eastern boundary is washed by the waters of the Ghagra, beyond which lie the districts of Bahraich district and Gonda district. Its eastern frontier marches with Faizabad district, and the Gomti forms a natural boundary to the south, dividing it from the Sultanpur district. On the west it adjoins the Lucknow district. The extreme length of the district from east to west may be taken at 57 mi (92 km), and the extreme breadth at 58 mi (93 km); the total area is about 1,504 sq mi (3,900 km2): its population amounts to 2,673,581, being at the rate of 686.50 to the square km. The Barabanki city is the district headquarters. Barabanki district has been known to be a favourite haunt of saints and ascetics, literatteurs and intellectuals, besides being a battlefield for freedom fighters.
The district under British rule had an area of 1,769 sq mi (4,580 km2). In 1856 it came, with the rest of Oudh, under British rule. During the Sepoy war of 1857-1858 the whole of the Bara Banki talukdars joined the mutineers, but offered no serious resistance after the capture of Lucknow.
It stretches out in a level plain interspersed with numerous jhils or marshes. In the upper part of the district the soil is sandy, while in the lower part it is clayey and produces finer crops. The district is well fed by rivers Ghaghra (forming the northern boundary), Gomti (flowing through the middle of the district) and Kalyani and their tributaries, for the major part of the year. Some rivers dry out in the summer, and get flooded during the rainy season, creating havoc. The changing course of the river Ghagra changes the land area in the district, year to year.
The principal crops are rice, wheat, pulse and other food-grains and sugarcane. Trade in agricultural produce is active. Both the bordering rivers are navigable; and the district is traversed by two lines of the Northern Railway and North-Eastern Railway, with branches having total length of 131 km. It has good road connectivity also including National Highways (NH 24A, NH 28, NH 28C & NH 56A), State Highways and various link roads.
The minority population in the district is over 24 per cent.
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