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Bilaspur City - An Overview

Bilaspur City
Population: 3.30 Lacs
Local Adminstration: Nagar Nigam (Municipal Corporation)
Mayor: Smt. Vani Rao - Elected on 23-Dec-2009 (Results on 27-Dec-2009)
Bilaspur City, the district headquarter of Bilaspur District, is the largest urban center (town/city) of the region. Bilaspur is the second largest city of Chhattisgarh state. Situated on the banks of River Arpa, Bilaspur is 114 kms from state's capital towards the north-east.

Chhattisgarh High Court was is setup in Bilaspur on 1st November 2000, the very day when the Chhattisgarh State was constituted, by viritue of which Bilaspur has gained the title of Nayaydhani (न्यायधानी - "legal" capital) of Chhattisgarh State.

Bilaspur City Bus Ltd. provides the city bus service.

The local administration body of the city is Bilaspur Nagar Nigam - Bilaspur Municipal Corporation. Bilaspur has 53 wards. Each ward elects a corporator for a tenure of 5 years.

Click here for a list of the corporators of Bilaspur Nagar Nigam.

Brief History of Bilaspur
Bilaspur has a history of about 400 odd years. It has been named after a beautiful fisherwoman Bilasa.

Statue of Bilasa
the fisherwoman after whom the city got its name.
According to the legend, in those days Ratanpur was the capital of the local kingdom and the modern day Bilaspur used to be a small settlement on the banks of River Arpa.    

According to one tale, the king had taken fancy for Bilasa a young beautiful fisherwoman during a trip in this part of his kingdom.

Bilasa refused to surrender to the wishes of the king and burnt herself alive. From then on the king would refer to this place as Bilasa ki nagari (बिलासा की नगरी), the name stuck and later on became Bilaspur.

Another tale, though far less accepted speaks about a revolt by fishermen of the region under the leadership of Bilasa. The revolt was crushed by the king and Bilasa was killed.

Today's Bilaspur
The foundation for modern Bilaspur city as we know it today, was laid in late 19th century when the Bengal Nagpur Railway was being constructed.

This place on the banks of River Arpa was selected as a major station and became one of the divisional headquarters.

The economy of the region has traditionally been agriculture based. The region is one of the top producers of paddy. So much so that it is often referred to as the "धान का कटोरा  Dhaan Ka Katora" (bowl of rice). 

With exploitation of the vast mineral reserves that have been found in the region, mining and its associated industries have gained prominenence as an important economic activity.

Most of the industrial and commercial activities of the region revolve around the wide variety of mineral resources that are available in abundance in the vicinity of Bilaspur.

Bilaspur is the headquarters of South Eastern Coalfields Ltd. (SECL), Coal India's highest revenue earner. South East Central Railway (SECR), which is the largest revenue earning zone of the country, is located at Bilaspur. National Thermal Power Corporation Ltd. (NTPC) has its Super Thermal power project here, which on maturity will deliver about 2400 MW of electric power to the national power grid. 

Many companies big and small have there manufacturing / production units in and around Bilaspur. Companies in thermal power, aluminum, cement, sponge iron sectors etc. are located here and are doing good. 

The anciliary, allied and support industries have also bloomed and flourished in the quest to meet the requirements of the changing times.

Bilaspur became a popular destination on the medical tourism map when SECL conceived and constructed an ultra modern 250 bed hospital and handed it for management to Apollo Hospital. Apollo Hospital Bilaspur is a multi-speciality health facility located at Lingyadih.

The health infrastructure of Bilaspur also includes Chhattisgarh Institute of Medical Sciences and New Horizon Dental College and Research Institute.

The higher education infrastructure of Bilaspur revolves around Guru Ghasidas Vishwavidyala, which offers a variety of degree and diploma courses through its teaching departments and affiliated colleges.

Bilaspur has several University Teaching Departmetns and about 125 colleges affiliated to the university including those offering courses in Engineering, Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmacy. Students come to Bilaspur from the surrounding places to take up education in almost all the fields of study.

Bilaspur has its own standing as a hub for coaching centers. These institutes are working to prepare the young aspirants for the competitve examinations that are conducted at the state and national levels.
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