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پیلی بھیت
Pilibhit - the mini Punjab
Coordinates 28°38′59″N 79°52′21″E / 28.6497°N 79.8724°E / 28.6497; 79.8724
Country  India
Region Rohilkhand
State Uttar Pradesh
Division Bareilly
District(s) Pilibhit
Settled Late 15th century AD
Mayor Mr. Prabhat Jaiswal
MP Shri Varun Gandhi
MLA Mr. Riyaz Ahemad
Civic agency Pilibhit Nagar Palika Parisad
Ward 52 wards
162,625 (2001)
2,365.11 /km2 (6,126 /sq mi)
Sex ratio 877 /
• Male
• Female
• 62.49%
• 35.11%
Official languages Hindi, Urdu, English, Punjabi
Time zone IST (UTC+05:30)
68.76 km2 (27 sq mi)
172 m (564 ft)
0 km (0 mi)
• Summer
• Winter
HS-TH (Köppen)
     780 mm (30.7 in)
     25.5 °C (78 °F)
     36.8 °C (98 °F)
     14.5 °C (58 °F)
Governing body Government of UP
Government of India
ISO 3166-2 IN-UP-PB

Pilibhit (Hindi: पीलीभीत, Urdu: پیلی بھیت, historic name: Hafizabad) is a city and a municipal board in the Pilibhit district in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. Pilibhit is the north-eastern most district of Bareilly division, situated in the Rohilkhand region of the sub-Himalayan Plateau belt on the boundary of Nepal, known for the origin of river Gomati and one of the most forest-rich areas in North India. According to the Imperial Gazetteer of India, vol. 20, page 144, issued by the Government of India, Pilibhit was once known as Hafizabad, derived from the name of the great Rohella leader of the area Hafiz Rahmat Khan, but eventually it took its present name from a nearby village.[1] Pilibhit was also known as Bansuri Nagari - the land of flutes, for making and exporting roughly 95 per cent of India’s flutes.[2]

According to a report issued by the Government of India, Pilibhit is one of the Minority Concentrated Areas in India on the basis of the 2001 census data on population, socio-economic indicators and basic amenities indicators.[3]. Though separated only by a short distance from the outer ranges of the Himalayas, Pilibhit consists entirely of a level plain, containing depressions but no hills and is intersected by several streams.[4] Pilibhit is one of the forest rich areas of Uttar Pradesh, which has very high tourism potential. The almost 54 km-long Indo-Nepal international border makes Pilibhit a highly sensitive for security purposes.[5] According an estimate by the Government of India, Pilibhit has 45.23% of its population living under the poverty line.[6] Increasing population and unemployment is a cause of worry in the area, and many non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and government-run organizations have initiated projects to provide employment, but human resources are yet to be exploited in full.

Pilibhit has been geographic and political cynosure as it is the only forest area amid the 22 districts and the only district that has an international border in Harit Pradesh, which is proposed to be carved out of Uttar Pradesh.



Sunset at Chuka beach, near Pilibhit

‎ Pilibhit lies between the parallels of 28064' and 29053' north latitude and the meridians of 79057' and 81037' east longitude covering an area of 68.76 km2. The north side of Pilibhit is bordered by Udham Singh Nagar of Uttarakhand state and by the territory of Nepal. Shahjahanpur lies on the south side Pilibhit. The east of Pilibhit is flanked for a short distance by Lakhimpur Kheri and the remaining distance is swathed by the Shahjahanpur. The western limit touches the limits of Bareilly.

According to the Central Statistical Organisation, the district Pilibhit had an area of 3504 km2 on September 1, 2007, occupying 46th position in the state and the total area of the Pilibhit city is 68.76 km2. Pilibhit city, with 2365.11 people per square kilometre, is more densely populated that the rest of district, which has 469.51 people per km2.

The area has diverse features, and topographically may be divided into several distinct tracts. In the north and north-west, the tract is a continuation of the Terai. The southern portion of the Bisalpur tehsil is similar in most respect to the adjacent tract of Bareilly and Shahjahanpur. The eastern and smaller section approximates rather to undeveloped forest areas of Lakhimpur Kheri, though with the spread of cultivation the dissimilarity between Puranpur and the rest of the area is gradually becoming less marked. There are 1216 villages within Pilibhit's limits, of which 982 are electrified.[7]

Agricultural and forestry science center, Pilibhit

‎ The area has more than ten small to medium sized rivers and nine small to medium sized water bodies. The origin of river Gomti, Gumti or Gomati (Hindi: गोमती ), which is a tributary of the Ganges River, is from a small lake, Gomat Taal, situated in Madhotanda in the Puranpur tehsil region.[8] Another important river in the region is River Sharda (Hindi: शारदा ), which runs through on the eastern part of the district. Pilibhit city receives water from the river Devhahuti Ganga or Devha (Hindi: देवहुति गंगा or देवहा ) on the north-west side of the city and the River Ghaghara or Khakra (Hindi: घाघरा or खाकरा ) on the north-east side of the city. Pilibhit city also has a few water bodies in its limits, one being on Tanakpur road in front of Dramond college gate, another being at the Chauraha degree college. Every year during winter, the Chauraha water body attracts thousands of migratory birds. The main source of water in the district is the ground water and the canals. District Pilibhit is swathed by a big net of canals. The district has six main feeders or canals, which run through almost 138 km in the district.

Road side canals are very common around Pilibhit

‎ The major part of Pilibhit District is covered by dense forest. Total 784.572 km2 is forest.[9] Till 1978, 63% area of the district was a dense forest, but deforestation has reduced the total forest cover to 22.39% in 2004.[10] The Sharda canal is the main canal of the district, the others being its branches. The total length of canals in the district is 138 km. Apart from the canal system, the district also has a few water bodies, which are being using for agriculture purposes.

National Highway No. 74 runs through the district connecting Haridwar to Bareilly via Kichha, Kashipur and Nagina city. Apart from the National Highway, the district is well connected with Shahjahanpur in south, Lakhimpur Kheri and Indian International Border (IIB) with the Nepal in east, Nanital and town Khatima in north, and the city of Bareilly in the west by roads and railways.

The district Pilibhit also has several places of religious importance in or around the district. A main gurudwara of the Sikh community is located in Nanakmatta town around 46 km from the city.[11][12]

One of the biggest and the most important temples of the region, Sri Purnagiri Temple, is in the nearby Champawat district of Uttaranchal. Thousands of lakhs of people from around Uttar Pradesh and other parts of Northern India come to this temple, and Pilibhit is one of the halting points for the pilgrims.[13].


Population Growth of District Pilibhit[14][15][16]
Census Pop.  %±
1871 492,098
1881 451,601 -8.2%
1891 485,108 7.4%
1901 470,369 -3.0%
1911 487,632 3.7%
1921 431,604 -11.5%
1931 448,824 4.0%
1941 490,699 9.3%
1951 504,391 2.8%
1961 616,301 22.2%
1971 752,151 22.0%
1981 1,008,332 34.1%
1991 1,283,103 27.3%
2001 1,645,183 28.2%
Est. 2011 2,064,869 [17] 25.5%
Population in years 1871, 1881, 1891 are taken
from Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 20, p. 138.

As of the 2001 India census,[18] District Pilibhit had a population of 16,45,183[19] Pilibhit district is the 46th most populous district of the Districts of Uttar Pradesh. Pilibhit City has 1,62,625 people. Males constitute 53.26% of the population and females 46.73%. Pilibhit has an average literacy rate of 49.81%, lower than the national average of 59.5%. Male literacy is 62.49%, and female literacy is 35.11%. In Pilibhit, 13% of the population is under 6 years of age. The population of district Pilibhit for 2011 has been estimated as many as 20,64,869 by a study done in Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.

Prior to the abolition of zamindari, the zamindars owned large tracts of arable and forest land. Farm labour was brought from eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. After zamindari was abolished, the excess cultivable land was distributed amongst the landless agricultural labour. In the post-independence period, many displaced persons from Pakistan were settled in the area. They were provided cultivable land mainly by clearing private forests. Large tracts were cleared and wetlands were drained and brought under the plough. The inhabitants of the land generally belong to these major groups: those from eastern Uttar Pradesh, those from Pakistan including Punjabis and Bengalis, migrants from Punjab and the locals.

The common property lands and resources are worst affected in Puranpur tehsil. The population density of the tehsil has increased considerably over the last two decades. The population groups constantly endeavour to maintain their interests and identity. The immigrant labour and the Bengalis are the weakest economically but have growing political clout. The Punjabi displaced persons and migrants are financially the strongest and wield considerable political clout.[20]. The locals are always anxious to safeguard their interests against the immigrants. The locals are strongest in the process of decision-making.

Faith Followers in Pilibhit[21]
Religion Percent
Based on 2001 census

Amongst the locals, one of the historically important community is the Tharu tribe.[22] According to a British officer, historian Lieutenant-Colonel[23] James Tod (1782–1835), a large number of fighters from Maharana Pratap's army left Rajasthan after his son Amar Singh's surrender to Mughal Army and went towards the dense forest in the Himalayan belt in search of a safe location. These tribes survived and are now settled as cultivators in the area, keeping large herds of cattle, and some sheep and goats. They have a distinct cultural identity. There are some Tharu villages in the proximity of Katarniaghat wildlife sanctuary. They are related to the Tharus in the terai areas in Nepal. The Tharus depend on the forests for food, fodder, medicine, small timber for construction of huts and agricultural implements, handicrafts, social and religious ceremonies. The major Tharu groups include the Ranas, Dingoras and Katharias. Marriages between these groups are very uncommon. Once their habitations were forest villages but now these are revenue villages. These tribes are not economical and politically vibrant, but the Government of India has initiated schemes to bring them back to the mainstream. The tribal area development schemes have benefited these people. They have adopted modern farming techniques and have slowly shifted from subsistence level farming to raising cash crops. Some now own tractors and other farm implements. The ecological development initiatives have largely focused on these Tharu villages. Tharu youths are now showing their talent in the field of sports, education and art.

A busy market on station road in Pilibhit city

Studies reveal that the poverty level in the district is associated with the social identity, source of livelihood, landlessness and level of education of the head of household. Education is a crucial instrument for raising income levels of people and moving out of the vicious circle of poverty. A study done by Delhi-based NGO, Nav Bharat Nirman indicates a strong correlation between educational attainment and poverty levels among various social classes in the district. The incidence of poverty is much higher among scheduled castes (SC) and scheduled tribes (ST) households in Pilibhit. Nearly 60 per cent of SC households were below the poverty line in Pilibhit in 1999-2000. However, this proportion came down to 45.23 per cent in 2007-08.[24] The pace of decline of poverty was faster for the SC/ST households as compared to other households during this period. The poverty level among Hindus and Muslims was roughly of the same in the rural areas around 31 percent in 1999-2000. But poverty levels are much higher for Muslims in the urban areas, which is almost equal to 42.2 per cent as compared to only 26.4 per cent for Hindus. With 7,44,120 people under poverty line, Pilibhit comes under top 20 backward districts of India in term of education, socio-economic conditions, opportunity to earn livelihood and basic amenities. Many non-profit organization have come forward to help the population living under the poverty line.

List of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) operating in Pilibhit
No. Names of NGO
1. Kawarnthi Sewa Dal (KSD)
2. Bal Vikas Samiti (BVS)
3. Mahila Kalyan Samiti (MKS)
4. Medical Sisters Of St. Joseph (MSJ)
5. Ram Krishna Sewa Samiti (RKSS)
6. Samaj Kalyan Evam Vikas Adhyayan Kendra (SKEVAK)[25]
7. The Methodist Church in India (MCI)
8. Uttar Pradesh Drought Relief Committee (UPDRC)
9. Viklang Kalyan & Punrvaas Samiti (VKPS)
10. Vivek Educational Foundation of Canada[26]


Pilibhit experiences three distinct seasons: summer, monsoon and winter. The typical summer months are from the end of March to June, with maximum temperatures ranging from 36 °C (97 °F) to 42 °C (108 °F). Contrary to most of the Himalayan Plateau where June is the warmest month, the warmest month in Pilibhit is May. The city starts receiving heavy thundershowers with sharp downpours in mid June. Though the temperatures plunge in this month, the summer heat can be accompanied by high humidity.

Monsoon winds blowing from the south India are a welcome relief in mid June, bringing with them heavy showers in July and August. Pilibhit receives consderable rainfall in August and September. The city receives an annual rainfall of 723 mm, mainly between June and September as the result of southwest monsoon. August is the wettest month of the year. The spells of continuous rainfall may stretch to many days or even a few weeks. In 1967, Pilibhit received a record of 17 consecutive days of rainfall (days when rainfall is greater than 21.7 mm).

As the monsoon winds recede, the day temperature starts to decline in October with cooler nights signalling the onset of winter. Pilibhit experiences winter from November to February. It experiences pleasant windy days, clear skies and cool nights from November to the end of February, which makes it the most enjoyable time of the year. The day temperature hovers around 14 °C (57 °F) while night temperature is below 7 °C (45 °F) for most of December and January, often dropping to 3 °C (37 °F) or 4 °C (39 °F). On particularly cold days, wind may appear to be very chilly due to the dryness of air. Rain is very expected in February.[27]

Reported climatic variations:[28]

  • The highest temperature recorded in Pilibhit was 48.5 °C (119 °F) on 29 May 1989.
  • The lowest temperature recorded in Pilibhit was −0.2 °C (32 °F) on 17 January 1949.
  • Pilibhit received snowfall once, in January 1949, which was the coolest year in the Himalayan Plateau region. The temperature reached below zero this year in the region.
Climate data for Pilibhit, Uttar Pradesh, India
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Average high °C 14 19 21 36 40 42 40 36 34 29 20 11
Average low °C 4 10 13 23 31 34 32 27 24 20 13 6
Rainfall mm 7.6 22.9 30.5 45.7 81.3 121.9 132.1 139.7 109.2 30.5 22.9 12.7
Average high °F 57 66 70 97 104 108 104 97 93 84 68 52
Average low °F 39 50 55 73 88 93 90 81 75 68 55 43
Rainfall inches 0.3 0.9 1.2 1.8 3.2 4.8 5.2 5.5 4.3 1.2 0.9 0.5
Source:[29] 2009-02-04


The city Pilibhit derived its name from a near by small village name 'Old Pilibhit', whose existence has been traced in mid of 15th century. This village still exist on the bank of the River Ghaghra or Khakra in the north-east from the city on the way to Nyoria Husainpur town. This village was occupied by the Bhanjara (local community) of the Periya clan, which used to live in the houses made of mud and other raw material available in the forest. This community made a wall or mound of yellow mud around their locality in order to secure their house from wild animals, as that area was a dense forest, so the people used to call the locality as Pili (yellow) and Bhit (wall or mound). According to the Imperial Gazetteer of India, vol. 20, page 144, issued by the Government of India, Pilibhit was once known as Hafizabad on the name of the great Rohella leader of the area, Hafiz Rahmat Khan, but later took its current name from a nearby village.[30] According to a document from the British Library, 'the city Pilibhit' existed in the late 18th century (1770-1780 AD) when Marathas invaded the Rohilkhand region. With this invasion, the Kurmi community came to this region and over time, the city Pilibhit enlarged it boundaries.[31] Another evidence of the city's existence is found in Nepali literature, which mentions a city named as Pilibhit, which provided shelter to the last king of the Shah dynasty, Deepa Shah, who was attacked by the Gorakha king in 1789 AD.[32] The Rohella ruler Hafiz Rahmat Khan, a Pashtun ancestor of Afghans in the area, developed Pilibhit as a city and administrative unit.


At the end of 10th century, a line of princes of Chhinda dynasty ruled the area of Pilibhit. Nothing else is know but their name and the fact that they made a canal out of River Sarada is recorded in an archaic inscript written in Sanskrit found near Dewal village.[33]. Local history commences with the rise of Rohela power in the area in the 18th century, when Pilibhit fell in the hands of Rohella warrior Hafiz Rahmat Khan, after the death of Ali Mohammed Khan. Hafiz Rahmat Khan was killed in 1774 in a battle near Miranpur Katra with the Nawab of Oudh, who was aided by British force lent by Warren Hastings and was added to Oudh.[34]. According to records available on papers, in 1801 when Rohilkhand was ceded to the British in lieu of payment of tribute, Pilibhit was a pargana of the district of Bareilly, which lost it in 1833, the arrangement being temporary and the tract being again united with Bareilly in 1841. In 1871 the Pilibhit subdivision was formed comprising Jahanabad, Pilibhit and Puranpur. the last of which was eventually converted into a separate district in 1879.[35]

At the introduction of the British rule, the parganas of Pilibhit, Jahanabad and Bisalpur was formed into separate tehsils. Puranpur was united for this purpose with Khutar. A redistribution of the area was effected in 1824, when the Bisalpur tehsil contained the parganas of Bisalpur and Maurari, which afterward become a single area, Jahanabad was joined with Richha to form tehsil Pareva and Pilibhit with Baheri, the HQ being at Pilibhit. In 1851 Baheri and the other tarai pargana were taken under direct management and in 1863 Richha was attached to the new Baheri tehsil, pargana Jahanabad being assigned to Pilibhit which also received Puranpur on its transfer in 1865. The latter, in 1871, a became subtehsil dependent on Pilibhit. The promotion of Puranpur into a full tehsil occurred in 1879, while Bisalpur throughout remained a separate subdivision. Thus the area is now divided into three tehsils and four parganas. Puranpur and Bisalpur constitute individual tehsils and parganas and the tehsil of Pilibhit comprises the paraganas of Pilibhit and Jahanabad.[36]

1857 Sepoy Mutiny at Pilibhit

During the great 1857 Indian Sepoy Mutiny, news of the raising of troops under the leadership of Khan Bahadur Khan Rohilla at Bareilly reached Pilibhit on June 1, 1857, and tumults at once brook out amongst the population in the city, while the surrounding villages remained prey to the rapacity and extortion of the rival Zamindars. The Joint Magistrate was forced to flee to Nainital. The mutineers of city nominally admitted the authority of Khan Bahadur Khan Rohilla, Nawab of Bareilly, and the grandson of Hafiz Rahmat Khan. British order was restored on May 13, 1858 by the British force lent by Commander Colin Campbell, 1st Baron Clyde of 9th Regiment of Foot of British Army with the help of Captain William George Drummond Stewart of 93rd (Sutherland) Highlanders of the British Army, after winning the Bareilly battle. Some of the mutineers were captured and sentenced to death.[37]

Pilibhit at a glance in 1901

According to the Imperial Gazetteer of India, vol. 20, page 143, published by Government of India, below is the demogarphy of Pilibhit as of 1901.[38]

Area Population Density Total literacy Male literacy Female literacy No of School No of Pupil
1227 km2
383 per km2

Historical facts

It is believed by locals that Pilibhit was ruled by an ancient king named Mayurdhwaj or Moredhwaj or King Venu, who was a great devotee of lord Krishna and a loyal friend of Arjun, whose name and geography of his kingdom, can be traced in the Hindu epic Mahabharat.[39]

According to the Imperial Gazetteer of India, vol. 20, page 138, Pilibhit was ruled by Chhinda dynasty in the 10th century, an inscription, written in Sanskrit, has been found in the dewal village of Puranpur area which shows that the princes of Chhinda dynasty made a canal out of River Sarada in the 10th century.[40]

According to a British officer, historian Lieutenant-Colonel[41] James Tod (1782–1835), Maharana Pratap's son, Amar Singh, fought 17 wars with the Mughal emperor Akbar but in 1595, after Maharana Pratap's death, he conditionally accepted them as rulers. At this time, many of Maharana Pratap's band of loyal Rajputs became disillusioned by the surrender and left Rajasthan. This group included Rathores, Deoras, Chauhans, Parihars, Tomars, Kashwahas, Ranas, Tharus and Jhalas. Collectively, they are called Tharu at present and are settled mostly in sub Himalayan belt on the boundary of Nepal in and around of dense forest of present district Pilibhit in Uttar Pradesh. Many of the Tharu tribe are still living in the remote forest area in the district and trying to conserve the tradition and culture they brought from Rajasthan.

The city Pilibhit was an administrative unit in the Mughal era under Bareilly suba, so for the security purpose, the Mughal subedar Ali Mohammed Khan constructed four magnificent gate around the administrative building in 1734 AD. These gates were named as Barellwi darwaza in west, Hussaini darwaza in east, Jahanabadi darwaza in north and Dakhini darwaza in south, but because a lack of proper maintenance, all the gates have been lost, only ruins remain now.[42]

Pilibhit was invaded by the Marathas in 1772 AD. This was the time when the Kurmi community came in this region. The Marathas were the ancestor of Kurmi community, which is one of the major communities in the region.[43] The last king of Shah dynasty of Nepal got shelter in Pilibhit from ruler of Rampur suba Faizullah Khan in 1789 AD, when he was attacked by Gorakha king of Nepal.[44] The freedom fighter Maulana Enayetulla was from Pilibhit. He voluntarily played host to the exile of the Queen of Avadh, Begum Hazrat Mahal, who reached Nepal in late 1859.[45][46] There is one memorial place at Khakra chouki (Police Center, at present), where 21 freedom fighters were hanged on 14 January 1909, on the day of Makar Sankranti, who refused to follow British government's order and rebelled against them. In the respect of these 21 martyrs, a rock (named all martyrs) had been underpinned in the compound of police center.

Mohandas K. Gandhi addressed a huge rally on 12 November 1929 in the field of Gauri Shankar temple along with Kasturba and Mirabehn and planted a tree in the temple campus which is still in the temple.[47]

Riots and clashes

Due to dense minority population, Pilibhit district is a communally sensitive area. Pilibhit also has seen many riots and communal clashes.

Year communal Riots/Clashes Reason Casualties-Officially
Hindu-Muslim communal clash Moharram and Ram navami festivals on same day[48][49]
No Records
Hindu-Muslim communal riots Hindu protest against cow slaughter on Baqrid[50]
No Records
Hindu-Muslim communal riots Cow slaughter by Muslims on Baqrid[51]
Hindu-Muslim communal clash Trouble at the Ram navami festival procession[52]
Hindu-Muslims communal cum political riots Hindu groups accused Muslims to want to turn UP as Muslim state[53]
Hindu-Muslims political riots RSS-Muslim League clash turned communal riots[54]
Communal riots provoked by Hindu group Hindu group RSS tried to frustrate Muslims in area to leave India [55]
Muslim attack on Hindus tuned into riots Muslim protested Ram navami procession in Muslim areas[56]
Hindu-Muslim communal clash Hindu boy was attacked by Muslim boys in Moradabad[57][58]
Hindu-Sikh political riots Sikh massacre after Indira Gandhi's assassination[59]
Hindu-Muslim communal cum political riots Hindu-Muslim riots after elections[60]
Hindu-Muslim communal riots Ayodhya aftermath[61]

Human life loss due to natural calamities

  • A great famine in 1877-78, followed by fever epidemic in 1879 caused almost 41000 of deaths in the area of Pilibhit, Puranpur, Bisalpur.[62]
  • Almost 70,000 people died in 1917-18 due to fever in the district. In the 1920s, Pilibhit has lost a large number of human life due to Plague, Cholera, Smallpox, Yellow Fever, Gastroenteritis, due to which population growth during 1911-21 was negative.[63]
  • Pilibhit comes under the High Risk Flood Zone. Almost every year some part of district is affected by massive floods.[64] but the city has seen disastrous floods thrice in last fifty years, in July 1971,[65] Sept 1989 and Sept 2008.[66][67]
  • More than Rupees 15 millions worth of damage and more than 43 human casualties had been reported by the government sources during the flood in September 2008 in the district Pilibhit. Puranpur tehshil was the worst hit by the flood.
  • Pilibhit comes under seismic zone-4[68], which is a High Risk Seismic Zone. Pilibhit has been trembled a few times in past two centuries.

Seismic history

The city Pilibhit has experienced earthquakes several times in the last two centuries.[69]

Date Epicenter Strength on Richter scale
1 September 1803 Northern Garhwal region
10 October 1956 Bulandshahr district
24 December 1961 Northern Garhwal region
15 September 1966 South of Moradabad district
29 July 1980 Western Nepal region
29 March 1999 Northern Garhwal region
18 October 2007 District Gautam Buddha Nagar region


Rail transportation

Pilibhit junction railway station is on the Bareilly-Lakhimpur railway line. The station is under the administrative control of the North Eastern Railways. Computerized reservation facility is provided. Going south-west, Bhojipura junction railway station is the main station next to Pilibhit. The nearest main station to the west is Puranpur railway station.[70]

National Highway 74, runs through Pilibhit, and connects Haridwar to Bareilly via Pilibhit, Kichha, Kashipur and Nagina city

Three express trains come here from Lucknow: Lucknow-Agra express (5313), Nainital Express( 5308) and Rohilkhand Express (5310). Two express trains come from Agra: Agra-Gonda express (5316) and Agra-Lucknow (5314) Express. From Delhi one has to reach first nearby district Bareilly by bus or train before reaching Pilibhit by a bus or meter gauge train.[71]

Pilibhit expected to be connected by meter gauge to Lucknow through Bareilly-Lakhimpur railway line by the end of 2012.[72]

  • Station Code: PBE
  • Enquiry about arrival and departure of trains: +91-5882-255804

Road transportation

National Highway 74 passes through Pilibhit. Regular buses connect Pilibhit to Bareilly at the frequency of every ½ hr. Direct buses are also available from Delhi, Lucknow, Haridwar, Rishikesh, Kanpur, Rupaidhiya, Agra and Tanakpur, etc.

  • Enquiry about arrival and departure of buses: +91-5882-255670

Air transportation

Nearby airports (within 200 miles):-

Nearest Airport Symbol Distance (In miles)
New Delhi

Main roads in city

No. Names of Road
1. Station Road
2. Jai Prakash Road
3. Nai Basti Road or Degree College Road
4. Chudi wali Gali
5. Thandi Road or Katchari Road
6. Mill Road
7. Khakra Road
8. Assam Road
9. Gandhi Stadium Road
10. Jaisantri Road

Distance from Pilibhit

All distance given are air distance and all directions are from Pilibhit, road distance are different from air distance.[73]

Air distance of state capitals from Pilibhit
City State Distance (km) Distance (miles) Direction
New Delhi Delhi
Mumbai Maharashtra
Kolkata West Bengal
Chennai Tamilnadu
Bangalore Karnataka
Hyderabad Andhra Pradesh
Chandigarh Punjab & Haryana
Lucknow Uttar Pradesh
Bhubaneswar Orissa
Patna Bihar
Dehradun Uttaranchal
Shimla Himachal Pradesh
Gandhinagar Gujarat
Jammu Jammu & Kashmir
Jaipur Rajasthan
Bhopal Madhya Pradesh
Ranchi Jharkhand
Raipur Chhattisgarh
Panaji Goa
Thiruvananthapuram Kerala
Itanagar Arunachal Pradesh
Dispur Assam
Gangtok Sikkim
Kohima Nagaland
Agartala Tripura
Imphal Manipur
Shillong Meghalaya

Places of interest

Old Pilibhit (Hindi: पुराना पीलीभीत)

The present town is of comparatively recent origin but there is still a village known as Old Pilibhit standing on the left bank of the Khakra river about 5 km to the northeast near the road to Nyoria Husainpur. This village had always been occupied by the Banjara tribe of the Periya clan. It is supposed that Pilibhit is the corruption of Periya Bhit or the village mound of the Periyas, and also that the name Pilibhit has been derived from a yellow mud wall which once surrounded the district.

Jama Masjid (Hindi: जामा मस्जिद)

A painting of Pilibhit Jama Masjid in 1780 found in the British Library.[74]

Many big buildings were constructed in the Mughal period. A replica of Jama Masjid, Delhi was built in Pilibhit by Hafiz Rahmat Khan in 1769. Previously there was a pond at this place. Three lakh rupees were spent for the construction of this Masjid at that time. A sun watch is still there in the Jama Masjid. Hafiz Rahmat Khan was the Afghan Rohilla leader whose jagirs or estates included Pilibhit and Bareilly, where he is buried. He became the leader of the Rohilla Afghans in western Avadh, but was killed in a battle against the Nawab of Avadh, assisted by the British forces in 1774. The gateway is built in Mughal style, paying homage to the gateways of the Jama Masjid in Delhi, while the wall around the mosque enclosure shows the curvilinear Bengali roof found in Shahjahan's additions to the Mughal palace at Agra. Every Friday, large Muslim population of the city and nearby villages comes to the masjid and performs the prayer in zamat. Due to dense population around this monument and lack of proper maintenance, the part of the building has been destroyed and part of land has been constructed. A small market is also held on every Tuesday in the Jama Masjid compound, which causes damage to the 250-year-old building. A new Tehsil compound also has come up near to the great Jama Masjid compound.

Dargah-e-Shahji Miyan (Hindi: शाहजी मियां की दरगाह)

Shahji Miyan Dargah in Pilibhit

In the northern side of the city of Pilibhit a dargha of qutebe Pilibhit Hazrat Kibla Haji Shah Ji Mohammad Sher Mian Sahib Rahmat Ullah Aleh is situated. People travel from other states and countries to take the blessing of Hazrat Shah ji mian. It is also said that by offering a Chadar at the dargah is fruitful to the people. The dargar has become place of social harmony as people of various religion come here to offer their faith.[75]

Gauri Shankar Temple (Hindi: गौरी शंकर मन्दिर)

This temple is 450 years old. This is situated in Khahra locality at banks of the rivers Devha and Khahra. It is said that the forefathers of present Pandit Har Prasad came to this place with other saints. There was a jungle at ancient times. He dreamt in the night that a idol of lord Shiva, God of distraction, is beneath the place. The next morning, he dug the place and saw the idol of lord Shiva. Gradually a temple was built. Every year a fair is organized here on the occasions of Shivratri, Raksha Bandhan and on every Monday of Shraavana month. A dharamshala is situated at the outer side of the temple, which was donated by Dwarika Das Banjara. There are two big entry gates at the eastern and southern side of the temple. These gates were built by Hafiz Rahmat Khan in late 18th century.

Raja Venu Ka Tila (Hindi: राजा वेणु का टीला)

In the Puranpur area, about one km away from the railway station, there is one high place (Tila) is situated in Shahgarh area, It is said that there was a palace of Raja Venu at this place. Ruins are still there. A very big well and ruins tell the story of an ancient kingdom.

Chuka Beach Pilibhit

Jaisantri Devi Temple (Hindi: जयसंतरी देवी मन्दिर)

It is one of the sacred place of the area, placed near awas vikas colony locality of the city, which almost 5 km away from the railway station. Although the temple premises are not in good shape, but it is a place of faith of thousands and lakhs Hindus of surrounding areas. The temple becomes very crowded during Navratri days. A large fair used to be organized in the compound during Navratri, which attracts a large crowd from the district and from nearby districts. It is believed that the temple was constructed some time in 1858, after the great Indian sepoy mutiny, in the memory of some sepoys, who died while fighting with the British forces in the field near the temple. The temple compound also has a Peepal tree which is believed to be more than 200 years old and witnessed the sepoy mutiny in 1857. Beside this great historical and religious importance, the devastating flood in the September 2008 damaged the temple building and other small temples in the compound. Although some maintenance has been done by the temple management committee, a large scale restoration is required to save this 150 year old temple.

Gurudwara Sri Chattvi Padshahi, Pilibhit

Ardhanarishwer Temple (Hindi: अर्धनारीश्वर मन्दिर)

Ardhanarishwer Temple is a newly constructed, well-decorated temple, which is the center point of all Shiva devotees of the city. It is situated on the station road, near the Vishal cinema. This temple become extremely crowded during Shraavana month and on the day of Mahashivratri. The another attraction of this temple is the Kali puja, organized on the Diwali night in an auspious mahurat by the Bengali community of the city. Thousands of devotees take part together in the puja.

Chuka Beach (Hindi: चूका घाट)

Chuka beach is situated between the main Sharda canal and Sharda sagar dam under the Mahof forest range. This is an evergreen forest area protected by the Government of India, and is one of five forest reserves in the district,: Mala, Haripur, Barahi, Mahof and Deoriya. The district administration has developed this place as a picnic spot in order to increase the tourism in the area.

Gurudwara Sri Chattvi Padshahi, A inside view

Drumand Government Inter College (Hindi: ड्रमंड राजकीय इंटर कॉलेज परिसर)

This was established in 1915 by Mr. Drumand. It is now a government inter college for boys from standard VI to XII. This school premises has one of the oldest buildings with the great architecture in the whole region. The trust taking care of the building is one of the richest trusts in that area.

Raja ji Temple (Hindi: राजा जी का मन्दिर)

Raja lalta Prasad and Sahau Har Prasad, belonging to the royal family of Pilibhit worked together and attained lot of fame and prosperity. Their contribution in making the town of Pilibhit well-known in the region was immense. Raja Lalta Prasad (1872–1924) along with his brother Sahu Har Prasad (1875–1953) apart from setting up businesses, such as the Lalit hari sugar mills took interest in the development of the region and established the Lalit Hari Sanskrit and Ayurvedic college, the Radha Ramanji temple, dharamshalas at religious centres in the shahukara locality of the city.

Chhathavi Padshahi Gurudwara (Hindi: छठवी पादशाही गुरुद्वारा)

This is a 400-year-old gurudwara in the Pakrdiya locality of the city. It is said that Guru Govind Singhji took rest here on the way to Nanakmatta. He established a gurudwara here on the name of the 6th guru Sri Har Govind ji and named it Chattvi Padshahi Gurudwara. In 1983, one of the famous social servants in area Sri Baba Faoj Singh reconstructed this beautiful shrine.

Gomat Taal (Hindi: गोमत ताल)

The Gomti river is one of the most sacred rivers of north India. It originates from a reservoir called Gomat taal, which is about 7 km east of Pilibhit and flows over 800 km into the River Ganges. It passes through Lucknow the capital of Uttar Pradesh and the latter part of its course through Barabanki, Sultanpur, Faizabad and Jaunpur districts. According to legends in the Pilibhit locality, the river is considered to be the daughter of Sage Vashistha. During solar eclipse, devotees believe that taking a bath in the Gomat taal is equivalent to the bath taken in the rivers in Kurukshetra.

Devha-Ghaghra Sangum (Hindi: देवहा-घाघरा संगम)

The river Devha joins the River Ghaghra at a place named Bharmchari Ghat (Hindi: बहर्मचारी घाट), next to the Aurvedic college campus in the Khakra locality of the city. Though there are no proper roads to reach that place, but some bull carts are always available for transportation, one has to cross both of the rivers before reaching the main ghat. Every year on the occasion of Karthik Purnima, which is also known as Ganga snan, solar eclipse], lunar eclipse, a big fair is organized at sangum, devotees come to sangum and take bath organize prayers. People from various communities come to this Ghats, cook Dal-Bhat and distribute among devotees after offering to the rivers.


A tiger walking with a cub in the Pilibhit Reserve Area
Fisheries Ecology Utter Pradesh
Forest Map, Pilibhit
Mahof Forest range Pilibhit

Pilibhit Tiger Reserve

Pilibhit has been granted to have a tiger reserve area which constitutes potential tiger habitat of priority I and II. This new tiger reserve at Pilibhit covers an area of approximately 1087 km² in Lagga Bhagga Forest Range. It runs through Pilibhit, Kishanpur Wildlife Sanctuary and Khutar range of Shahjahanpur, the existing one has Dudhwa, Katarniaghat and Kakraha range of Bahraich division.[76] Pilibhit, Khutar and Kakraha are the reserved forest areas which are being converted into protected areas for the reserves. This reserve is sectioned under the much talked program "Project Tiger".[77].

The February 2008 annual census of forest inhabitants says that this reserve area has a total 36 tigers: 11 male, 20 female, and five cubs. In the 2005 census, there were only one cub, 12 males and 22 females in the district. Pilibhit reserve has been expanded to over 73,000 hectares in several districts.[78]

The massive deforestation in the only existing forest tract of Indo-Nepal border in Pilibhit-Lakhimpur Tarai belt has reduced the forest cover. The depleted swathes of forest land have increased the pressure on survival of wild animals within the protected area. The new tiger reserve was sanctioned in keeping with this problem.[79] The outline for the reserve, as identified by the Critical Tiger Habitat Committee, has approved by Central government in September 2008. With Pilibhit Tiger Reserve area, Uttar Pradesh has two tiger reserve areas.[80] The Government of India has opened four reserves: Sunabeda Tiger Reserve in Orissa, Shahayadri Tiger Reserve in Maharashtra, Pilibhit Tiger Reserve in Uttar Pradesh, and Ratapani Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh in the third quarter of 2008.[81]

The fishery reservoir

Pilibhit also has a fishery reservoir, which is situated in the tehsil Bisalpur. It is recognized as a reservoir by Fisheries Department of the state government and by the central government. The State Fisheries Department classifies this water body used as a medium-size fishery reservoir (500 to 1000 ha area). This reservoir is a natural water body located on the southern periphery of Deoriya range also runs along the forests of this range. Every year during winter, this water body attracts thousands of migratory birds. Besides birds, it is home to a large number of turtles and numerous species of fish. Pilibhit also has a few small man-made and natural water bodies which are being use by Fisheries Department. There are also large numbers of local communities, mainly refugees from East Bengal settled on periphery of this water body. These communities engage themselves in poaching of migratory birds every year disturbing the peace and tranquility.[82]

Other forest area in Pilibhit

Apart from the reserve area and wild life places, Pilibhit also has a few forest areas around in the district including: Mala range (east from city towards Puranpur), Haripur range(east from the Puranpur town towards Nepal border), Barahi range (a few kilometres from city towards Kalinagar), Mahof Range (east from city near to Nyoria Husainpur)[83] and Deoriya range (on district's southern-east border towards Shahjahanpur). Mala, Deoriya and Barahi are well-connected with the city by road and railway. Mala range comes on the way to Lakhimpur Kheri from Pilibhit city, which is famous for leopards, swamp deer,[84] Rhinoceros, Cheetal, hog deer, barking deer, sambar, Wild bear, ratel, and around 400 species of birds and 90 species of fishes. Some of them are really dense and unhabited areas. Mala and Deoriya has a few habitated colonies, but Mahof is completely unhabitated yet., A part of this forest range, including area from forest in Udham Singh Nagar district of Uttarakhand, is also known as Lagga-Bagga forest range, which makes the Nepal border along with the River Sharda and "no man's land". In Mala and Barahi forests, Bengali communities are living in small colonies. They came to the area from East Bengal after the partition of India in 1947. After refugee habitation started in the area in 1947, deforestation had become a major concern.


Sri Lalit Hari Cricket Stadium

Pilibhit has one cricket stadium in the Shri Lalit Hari sugar mill compound, which is formerly known as Lalit Hari Stadium. This stadium was established in 1931 on Tarakpur road, at the railway station end. The home team for this stadium is Uttar Pradesh. It has matting type of pitch. This stadium had hosted a few Ranji trophy cricket matches in the early 1980s.

Some of the famous match was played at the Lalit Hari Sugar Factory Ground, Pilibhit are:

  • A match played between Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan teams, a north zone match on 25, 26, 27 December 1983 (three-day match) under 1983/84 Ranji trophy cricket tournament. Uttar Pradesh won the toss and decided to bat, but the match was drawn.[85]
  • A match played between Uttar Pradesh and Vidarbha teams, a Central Zone match on 22, 23, 24 November 1981 (3-day match) under 1981/82 Ranji trophy cricket tournament. Vidarbha won the toss and decided to bat but Uttar Pradesh won the match by 8 wickets.[86]

Gandhi Sports Stadium

This stadium in the Bareilly zone covers 85 acres (local measurement) of area in the middle of the city, which has various facilities for athletics, football, volleyball, hockey and some indoor sports. A swimming pool is proposed to be constructed in the stadium. In the same compound one multipurpose auditorium is available. This stadium is the only sports facility available for public uses.

Other facilities

Various educational institutions have their own facilities, including: DGIC ground, St. Aloysius ground, Rama college ground, and SVM college ground. The city hasn't produced any big sports celebrities, but city teams have won a few state level competitions on various events.[87]


St Aloysius College, Pilibhit
Saraswati Vidhya Mandir Pilibhit

The city of Pilibhit have several secondary and higher secondary schools and colleges for boys and. One of the main Ayurvedic colleges of Uttar Pradesh is situated in the city. The city has one ITI college, one law college, one nursing college and one management school, and a few colleges for science, commerce and art. The educational instituations are the main attraction for the students of nearby places as many new institutions have come up in the city for various higher education mainly affiliated with MJP Rohilkhand University, Bareilly. Although city has many educational institutes, Pilibhit has an average literacy rate of 49.81%, lower than the national average of 59.5%. Male literacy is 62.49%, and female literacy is 35.11%. Supporting education system by offering private classes and tuitions is one of the major livelihood earning in Pilibhit city. Pilibhit also a major educational center for Nepali students from the nearby areas in Nepal.

Main educational institutes in Pilibhit

No. Names of Educational Institutes Affiliation With
1. Drumand Boys' Government Intermediate College UP Board, Allahabad
2. St. Aloysius Intermediate College CBSE Board, New Delhi
3. Chironji Lal Virendera Pal Saraswati Vidhya Mandir Boys' Intermediate College[88] UP Board, Allahabad
5. Springdale Intermediate College CBSE Board, New Delhi
6. Sanatan Dharam Banke Bhihari Shri Ram Boys' Intermediate College UP Board, Allahabad
7. Lions Bal Vidhya Mandir Intermediate College CBSE Board, New Delhi
8. Girls' Government Intermediate College UP Board, Allahabad
9. Anguri Devi Saraswati Vidhya Mandir Girls' Intermediate College UP Board, Allahabad
10. Siddique National Boys' Intermediate College UP Board, Allahabad
11. Ben-Hur Intermediate College CBSE Board, New Delhi
12. Upadhi Mahavidhayalaya Rohilkhand University, Bareilly
13. Ram Lubhai Sahani Girls' Degree College Rohilkhand University, Bareilly
14. Pushp Institute of Sciences & Higher Studies[89] Rohilkhand University, Bareilly
15. Hafiz Rahmat Khan Law College[90] Rohilkhand University, Bareilly
15. Sanjay Gandhi School of Nursing Rohilkhand University, Bareilly
16. Shri Lalit Hari Sanskrit Mahavidhiyalaya Sampurnanand Sanskrit University, Varanasi
17. Springdale College of Management Studies[91] Rohilkhand University, Bareilly


Industry and agriculture

Pilibhit comes under the mango belt of Uttar Pradesh, and exports a large quantity of mango across the country

The district Pilibhit has an agriculture-based economy. It has very fertile land, but little industry, and has no mineral extraction area. The industry in the district is mainly based on agriculture. Since the main crop in this area is sugarcane, there are four sugar factories at Majhola, Puranpur, Bisalpur and Pilibhit. Three factories are in co-operative sector and one at Pilibhit is in private sector. The Lalit Hari Sugar Factory is the largest among them. In 2005-06, the Bajaj Industry opened with Bajaj Hindustan Sugar Factory Ltd, in Barkhera area of the district. The district also has a few cottage industries, including wooden or bamboo flute manufacturing, engineering units, brick klins, candles and zari work. The flutes made in Pilibhit have a big international demand. These flutes are exported to United State, Europe, Japan, Canada, UAE and African countries. Other major units are three solvent plants, four flour mills, one steel plant (a few kilometres from the city) and one alcohol distillery in Majhola town. According to an article published in Hindustan Times, by a 1991 estimate, 95% of India’s flutes were manufectured in Pilibhit[92]. The craftmen were used to source its bamboo from Barak Valley in Assam. Earlier, there was an unbroken narrow-gauge line running from Silchar, in Assam, via Bihar, and into Pilibhit. On this line, 60-strong bundles of bamboo, each stalk 10 ft long, use to make their way to Pilibhit, but around 15 years ago, sections of that line were removed. Now, the bamboo has to travel on narrow gauge from Silchar to Jiribum, then shift onto a broad-gauge line to travel to Bareilly, the nearest big town, and then reloaded onto narrow gauge to come into Pilibhit.[93]

Sugar mills

Name of Sugar Factory Capacity Installation year No. of cane Growers Cane Area (in Hect.)
The Lalit Hari Sugar Factory Pvt. Ltd. Pilibhit[94]
2000 TCD
The Bisalpur Sahkari Chini Mills Ltd., Bisalpur[95]
2500 TCD
The Kisan Coop Sugar Factory Ltd., Majhola[96]
2000 TCD
The Kisan Sahkari Chini Mills Ltd., Puranpur[97]
2500 TCD
The Bajaj Hindustan Ltd., Barkhera[98][99]
2160 TCD

Other establishments

Name Sector Category Installation year
R.S. Mahajan Industries, Pilibhit
Majhola Distillery & Chemicals, Pilibhit[100]
Anil Modi Oil Industries Ltd., Pilibhit[101]
Vegetable Oils & Wax.

The main crops of Pilibhit are sugarcane, rice, wheat, pulse, food grains, mustard and oil seeds, which depend upon the seasons. District Pilibhit supplies a large amount of fresh vegetables to Delhi, Lucknow and nearby markets in Uttaranchal. Pilibhit has one of the biggest food grain market in the Uttar Pradesh named as Adarsh Krishi Khadyann Mandi Samiti (Hindi: आदर्श कृषि खाद्यान्न मण्डी समिति), which is the main supplier market food grain and vegetable to Uttaranchal.

The dairy industry has been flourished in the area. The district has a lot of livestock, mainly cows, buffalos, goats. The district fulfills its own demand, and supplies the district of Bareilly and various places in Uttaranchal.

The embroidery industry is also one of the major source of income for semi-skilled labor. With help of some NGOs, this industry is growing in the local market, but and at the international level.

Economic development indicators [102]
Indicators 2004 2008 2012
Work Participation Rate
No. of Branches of Scheduled Commercial Bank
Habitations connected to pucca roads
Electrified Households
Houses with land-line connections
Avg Annual Per Capita Income
Rs. 82,689
Rs. 86,728
Rs. 89,456
Per Capita Expenditure
Rs. 6,924
Rs. 9,721
Rs. 12,678
Inflation Index


Lok Sabha Constituency

Pilibhit parliamentary constituency has been a favorite for the candidates who don’t belong to the constituency itself. Only three times has a local candidate won the seat. After Independence, in the first general election, a local candidate Mukund Lal Agrawal won the seat as the Indian National Congress candidate and made it to Parliament. The Lohiya wave in 1977 and Ayodhya wave in 1991 helped local candidates win the seat. After Agrawal, a Praja Socialist Party candidate, Mohan Swarup who was from Bareilly, won three consecutive general elections in 1957, 1962 and 1967. In the 1971 general election, Mohan Swarup won the Pilibhit seat as the Indian National Congress candidate.[103]

In the 1977 general election, the Nawab of district’s Sherpur Riyasat, Mr. Md Shamsul Hasan Khan won the constituency. But in the every next general election in 1980, he lost the seat and Indian National Congress’s candidate, Harish Kumar Gangawar, who belong to Bareilly, won the election from Pilibhit parliamentary constituency. And after that, in the 1984 general election, Indian National Congress’s candidate Bhanu Pratap Singh, who belong to Bareilly who the election from the seat. Then it was Menaka Gandhi’s turn to win the Pilibhit parliamentary constituency] as the Janata Dalcandidate. She belongs to Nehru-Gandhi family and is widow of Mr. Sanjay Gandhi. But 1991’s Ayodhya wave, helped the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate and prominent politician from Barkhera Parshuram Gangwar to reach the Parliament after defeating her. Again in 1996 Menaka Gandhi won the general election as Janata Dal’s candidate. She won next two general elections in 1998 and 1999 as an independent candidate, but supported by Bharatiya Janata Party. In 2004, she formally joined BJP and won Pilibhit parliamentary constituency seat as BJP’s candidate. For 15th parliamentary election, she vacated the seat for her son Varun Gandhi.[104]

Pilibhit was in news in March 2009, just two months before the general election of 2009, because BJP candidate Mr. Varun Gandhi had made some communal remarks in a public meeting in Dalchand locality of the city on March 6, 2009 and surrendered before the local court in Pilibhit. After his anticipatory bail expired in the presence of a large number of supporters on 29 March 2009, there were mass clashes between Varun Gandhi's supporters and administrative forces in the city.[105][106][107][108]

The Pilibhit parliamentary constituency seat again came in the news when highest voting was recorded in the state of Uttar Pradesh on 13 May 2009 for the 2009 general election. 8,42,590 (64.37%) voters caste their votes out of 13,08,959 voters in the 2009 general election.[109][110][111][112] Varun Gandhi won Pilibhit parliamentary constituency by receiving 4,19,539 (49.79% of total vote casted) votes and defeated his nearest trailing contender V.M. Singh by 2,81,501 votes, who received total 1,38,038 (16.38% of total vote casted) votes. Security deposits of all other 15 candidates, including his uncle V.M. Singh of Congress and Bahujan Samaj Party nominee Ganga Charan Rajput were forfeited.[113][114][115][116][117][118]

Parliament Constituency Code = 26
Year Lok Sabha Name of Members of Parliament Party
01st Lok Sabha
Shri Mukund Lal Agrawal
02nd Lok Sabha
Shri Mohan Swarup
03rd Lok Sabha
Shri Mohan Swarup
04th Lok Sabha
Shri Mohan Swarup
05th Lok Sabha
Shri Mohan Swarup
06th Lok Sabha
Shri Md Shamsul Hasan Khan
07th Lok Sabha
Shri Harish Kumar Gangawar
08th Lok Sabha
Shri Bhanu Pratap Singh
09th Lok Sabha
Smt. Menaka Gandhi
10th Lok Sabha
Shri Parshuram Gangwar
11th Lok Sabha
Smt. Menaka Gandhi
12th Lok Sabha
Smt. Menaka Gandhi
13th Lok Sabha
Smt. Menaka Gandhi
14th Lok Sabha
Smt. Menaka Gandhi
15th Lok Sabha
Shri Varun Gandhi

All details are taken from Election Commission web site.[119]

Vidhan Sabha constituencies

Legislative Assemblies
Assembly Established Constituency Code
Members of Legislative Assemblies
Year Vidhan Sabha Pilibhit Constituency Bisalpur Constituency Puranpur Constituency Barkhera Constituency
1951 01st Vidhan Sabha Sri Niranjan Singh (INC) Sri Hari Prasad (SoP) Sri Munendra Pal (SoP) NIL
1957 02nd Vidhan Sabha Sri Niranjan Singh (INC) Sri Bhihari Lal (PSP) Sri Munendra Pal (PSP) NIL
1962 03rd Vidhan Sabha Sri Ram R. Singh (INC) Sri Durga Prasad (INC) Sri Mohan Lal Acharya (INC) NIL
1967 04th Vidhan Sabha Sri B. Ram (BJS) Sri Munendra Pal (PSP) Sri Mohan Lal Acharya (INC) Sri Kishan Lal (BJS)
1969 05th Vidhan Sabha Sri Ali Zaheer (INC) Sri Tej Bhahdur (BKD) Sri Har Narayan (BKD) Sri Kishan Lal (BJS)
1974 06th Vidhan Sabha Sri Dhirendra Sahai (BKD) Sri Tej Bhahdur (INC) Sri Harish Chandra (BJS) Sri Kishan Lal (BJS)
1977 07th Vidhan Sabha Sri Dhirendra Sahai (JP) Sri Munendra Pal (JP) Sri Babooram Prabhati (JP) Sri Kishan Lal (JP)
1980 08th Vidhan Sabha Sri Charan Jit Singh (INC) Sri Tej Bhahdur (INC) Sri Vinod Kumar (INC) Sri Baboo ram (INC)
1985 09th Vidhan Sabha Sri Syed Ali Ashrafi (INC) Sri Tej Bhahdur (INC) Sri Vinod Kumar (INC) Sri Kishan Lal (BJP)
1989 10th Vidhan Sabha Sri Riyaz Ahemad (IND) Sri Harish Kumar (JP) Sri Har Narayan (JP) Sri Sannu Lal (IND)
1991 11th Vidhan Sabha Sri B. K. Gupta (BJP) Sri Ram Saran Verma (BJP) Sri Pramod Kumar (BJP) Sri Kishan Lal (BJP)
1993 12th Vidhan Sabha Sri B. K. Gupta (BJP) Sri Ram Saran Verma (BJP) Sri Virendra M. Singh (JD) Sri Kishan Lal (BJP)
1996 13th Vidhan Sabha Smt. Raj Rai Singh (BJP) Sri Anish A. Khan (BSP) Sri Gopal Krishna (SP) Sri Peetam Ram (SP)
2002 14th Vidhan Sabha Sri Riyaz Ahemad (SP) Sri Anish A. Khan (BSP) Sri Vinod Tiwari (BJP) Sri Peetam Ram (SP)
2007 15th Vidhan Sabha Sri Riyaz Ahemad (SP) Sri Anish A. Khan (BSP) Sri Arshad Khan (BSP) Sri Sukh Lal (BJP)
Short Name Party Name
Socialist Party of India
Praja Socialist Party
Bharatiya Kranti Dal
Bharatiya Lok Dal
Indian National Congress
Bharatiya Jana Sangh
Janata Party
Janata Dal
Bharatiya Janata Party
Samajwadi Party
Bahujan Samaj Party
Independent Candidate

Details from the Election Commission's web site [119]



Architectural excellence in Jama Masjid Building
Architectural brilliance displayed in Sri Radha Krishna Temple in the Shaukara locality

The architectural inheritance of the past millennia of the region of Rohilkhand survives to varying extent in Pilibhit. Some of the buildings are very old and have been built over repeatedly in course of time.

One of the oldest temples Sri Gauri Shankar Temple and Sri Radha Krishna Temple in the Shaukara locality in the city. The Gauri Shankar Temple has magnificent gates constructed by Hafiz Rahmat Khan.

Raja Ji ki Kothi in the Puranaganj locality of the city is another important building. The four gates constructed around the administrative building were built in 1734 AD by the Mughal subedar Ali Mohammed Khan: Barellwi darwaza in the west, Hussaini darwaza in the east, Jahanabadi darwaza in the north and Dakhini darwaza in the south. Because of a lack of proper maintenance, the gates have been lost, and only ruins remain now.

The Dramound Boys' Inter College building and the Ghanta Ghar building are other important examples of architecture in the coty. Apart from these public building, some of the residential buildings are also exemplary, some of the century old buildings in the old city have big wooden gates near the Laxmi Cinema complex and in Puranaganj locality.

British architecture can be seen in the old Tehsil compound constructed in 1903, and in the Pilibhit District jail compound constructed in 1944. The Tehsil compound has been abandoned now, but the jail compound is still in use.

Art and craft

People of Pilibhit are creative in art and craft. The Kumars community in the Tularam locality have made mud crafts for centuries. Embroidery craft is the employment for many families here. This embroidery is based on Lucknow’s famous Zardozi work. Some of the neighboring Tharu tribes make their livelihood by selling terracotta work. Because these artisans work independently, they are not able to get a good price for their work. Some NGOs have come forward to help them by training them in new techniques.

Being a heavily forested area, Pilibhit has a lot of wood-based art and craft industries. The wooden flute is an example of an industry in which Pilibhit has found its place on the international level. Flutes are being export to US, Europe and UAE. Wooden Chappals (Khadoo) is a wooden craft that is declining because there is little demand for it. Musical instruments made of wood like Tabla, Dolak, drums also produce revenue for a lot of families.

Dance and music

Being in the influence of Braj culture, Pilibhit's dance and music are enriched with the devotion to Sri Krishna. The region's folk heritage includes songs called Rasiya known and especially popular in Braj, which celebrate the divine love of Radha and Shri Krishna. These songs are accompanied by large drums known as bumb and are performed at many festivals. Other folk dances or folk theater forms include:


Religious practices are as much an integral part of everyday life and a very public affair as they are in the rest of India. Therefore not surprisingly, many festivals are religious in origin although several of them are celebrated irrespective of caste and creed. Among the most important Hindu festivals are Diwali, Holi and Vijayadasami, Mahashivaratri, Ram Navmi, Basant Panchami, Sri Krishna Janamastmi and Raksha Bandhan ,which are also observed by Jains and Sikhs. Eid al-Milad, Eid ul-Fitr, Bakr-Id and Moharram are Muslim religious festivals. Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated by Jains, Buddha Jayanti by Buddhists, Guru Nanak Jayanti by Sikhs and Good Friday, Christmas by the Christians.[120]


The city had four cinema halls, but due to a judiciary claim, one of the halls was closed in 2000 and another has been turned into a marriage hall. Now, only two of them are operational.

No. Names of Cinema Hall
1. Vishal Cinema
2. Laxmi Cinema
3. Novalty Cinema (not operational)
4. Jay Cinema (not operational)

Poetry and literature

Pilibhit has produced several well-known figures in music, poetry and literature:

Anjum Pilibhiti
A poet by nature and song writer by profession, Anjum Pilibhiti wrote many songs in the 1940s. He wrote for several movies including Meri Kahani (1948), Humayun (1945), Vidya (1948), Anokhi Ada (1948), Hamjoli (1946), Najma (1943), Anmol Ghadi (1946), Badi Maa (1945), Eighteen Fifty Seven/1857 (1946).[121]

Akhtar Pilibhiti
The 1940s witnessed a hit jugalbandi of Akhtar Pilibhiti and young Mohammad Rafi. Akhtar Pilibhit was born in Pilibhit on 12 March 1928. His most famous contribution was in the movie Shehnaaz. His song “ai dil tujh hii ko niind na aayii tamaam raat” was the fomous song in 1948.[122]

Hafiz Pilibhiti
Hafiz Pilibhiti was a famous writer in Urdu literature. He was born on 29 November 1860 in a very poor family and did his all studies in the local madrasa. His major contribution is Urdu Nazam and patriotic Urdu songs, which became very famous in the movement against British government. All of his work has been protected by National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language (NCPUL). He died on 15 July 1929.[123]

Rafiq Pilibhiiti
Rafiq Pilibhiiti was born on 14 June 1933 in Pilibhit, Uttar Pradesh, India. He is an engineer by profession. Besides having a first class academic career throughout Rafiq’s name was on the top of the list declared by state public service commission declared in the year 1960. Rafiq Pilibhiti belongs to a Zamindar family of Rohilkhand in Uttar Pradesh. His father late Sheikh Abdul Latif was also a poet and his pen name was 'Naaz'. Rafiq started writing poetry at the age of fifty, when he was posted at Moradabad.[124]

His major works are Jahan Numa (Hindi), Hare Zakhm (Hindi, English), Ishq–e–Madaam (Urdu), Zikr Us Parivash Ka (Urdu) and Jahan Numa (Urdu).

Suroor Jahanabadi
The pre-independence political turmoil, the social consciousness and the national awakening during the last decade of 19th century inspired Surror Hahanabadi, (real name Munshi Shri Durga das Sahai), a prominent poet, to compose poems suffused with patriotic sentiments. He was born in a poor kayastha family of town Jahanbad in Pilibhit district in 1873. His famous collections of (Urdu]) poems are Jama-i-suroor (1911) and Khumkhana-i-surror (1930-posthumous). Some other famous plays written by surror Jahanabadi are Ruksat-i-Shaheb, Gul-i-firdaus, Diwwar-i-khoon. He died in 1911 on day of Holi.

Fateh Singh Vatsayan
The Hindi and Sanskrit scholar was born in the Pilibhit city on 13 January 1913. He has served 41 years as a Hindi and Sanskrit professor in various universities in India. Presently he is living in Jodhpur with his family. This nonogenarian was honoured by prestigious National Literature Award by the President of India in 1966 for his work Kamayani Sundarya. He also has received various awards and honours from various state governments and organizations. His famous work is Kamayani Sundarya, Sahitya aur Sundarya, Bhartiya Smaj Sashtra, and Dayanad Aur unka Ved Bhasya.

Communication and media

Communication networks

All prominent tele-communication network provider in India offer their services in Pilibhit. The city of Pilibhit falls in the eastern boundary of Uttar Pradesh West telecom circle and thus calls from city of Pilibhit to neighboring districts including rest of the area in the western Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand telecom circle are considered to be local so they charge lower rates than call going to eastern part of Uttar Pradesh.

GSM Service Providers CDMA Service Providers Broadband Service Providers
Idea Cellular(Escotel)
Reliance India Mobile
BSNL Broadband
Tata Indicom[125]
Airtel Broadband
Sify iWay
Vodafone-IN (Hutch)
Radio services

Radio services available in Pilibhit:

Service Provider Frequency
All India Radio
100.4 MHz
Big 92.7 FM, Bareilly station
92.7 MHz
Radio Mirchi
98.3 MHz
Radio Mantra
91.9 MHz
AIR FM Rainbow
105.6 MHz
Print media

The Hindi daily news papers include Dainik Jagran, Amar Ujala, and Dainik Hindustan. Prominent English dailies like The Times of India, The Hindustan Times and Indian Express have fewer readers. Among lesser know Hindi papers are Swatantra Bharat, Rashtriya Sahara, and Jansatta. The Hindi newspapers Dainik Jagran and Amar Ujala have their offices in the city.

Civic administration

Pilibhit City officials
Prabhat Jaiswal
District Magistrate
Anil Garg(IAS)
Superintendent of Police
Prakash D.(IPS)
Chief Development Officer
Surendar Singh(PDS)

The Pilibhit Nagar Palika Parishad (PNPP) is the largest municipal board in the Pilibhit District, in charge of the civic and infrastructural assets of the city of Pilibhit. This municipal board was established in 1865.[127] Municipal limits begin with bank of River Khakra in the north, to bank of river Devha in the south and railway colony in the east to civil court in the east. The PNPP comprises 52 elected representatives, called Ward Members, one from each of the 52 wards (civic units) of the city. Elections to the Nagar Palika are held once every five years, with results being decided by popular vote. A ward member from the majority party is selected as a Palika Chairman, which is equivalent to Mayor in municipal corporations. The headquarters of Pilibhit Nagar Palika Parishad is at Sugar Mil Road. As of 2007, the Pilibhit Nagar Palika covers an area of 68.76 km² (27 sq mi).

Until the revision of Lok Sabha constituency and the legislative constituencies by the Delimitation commission before the general election of 2009, Pilibhit contributed only one member to the Lok Sabha. The constituency included Khutar and Powayan, but after delimitation, they were removed from Pilibhit constituency, and Baheri was included in the constituency.

Pilibhit city sends one member to the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly.

The Uttar Pradesh Police is responsible for the law and order maintenance in city of Pilibhit. The department is headed by a Superintendent of Police, and falls under the control of the Commissioner of Bareilly Zone, who is responsible of order maintenance in the Bareilly police zone and reports to Director General of Police, Uttar Pradesh. The department works through two main police stations in the city, Sungari Police Station for the eastern and southern parts of the city, and Kotwali Police Station for the western and northern parts of the city. The latter controls the police subcenter, also called police chowkis directly through out the area.

The District Magistrate is responsible for the administration of city of Pilibhit, who directly reports to the home ministry of Government of Uttar Pradesh. Being on the India’s international border, Pilibhit also has the office of Intelligence Bureau (IB) in the city which keep an eye on all the movements across the border and in the city.

Utility services

The water supply in Pilibhit is managed by the Uttar Pradesh Jal Board (UPJB). As of 2005-2006, it supplied 149 MGD (million gallons per day) of water, while the water demand for 2006–07 was estimated to be 185 MGD. The rest of the demand is met by private and public tube wells and hand pumps. The Banbasa storage is the largest water source for UPJB in Pilibhit, followed by river Sharda. With falling groundwater level and rising population density, Pilibhit may face severely acute water shortage in coming years. Pilibhit daily produces more than 234 tones of solid wastes which is dumped at bank of river Devha and Khakra by Pilibhit Nagar Palika Parishad (PNPP), which is creating a major water disaster.


See also

Related pages about Pilibhit
  • All pages beginning with "Pilibhit"
Article about places in Pilibhit
Article about people from Pilibhit

Further reading

  • William Crooke, P (1999), The Tribes and Castes of the North-Western Provinces and Oudh (3 ed.), Asian Educational Services, ISBN 8120612108 
  • P. C. Kanjilal, P (1982), A Forest Flora for Pilibhit, Oudh, Gorakhpur, and Bundelkhand (5 ed.), Narendra Pub. House 
  • Basil Leonard Clyde Johnson, P (1979), India,: Resources and Development (6 ed.), Heinemann Educational Books, ISBN 0064933482 
  • Govt. of Uttar Pradesh, P (1959), Uttar Pradesh District Gazetteers (2 ed.), Govt. of Uttar Pradesh 
  • Walter C. Neale, P (1962), Economic Change in Rural India: Land Tenure and Reform in Uttar Pradesh:1800-1955 (1 ed.), Yale University Press 
  • Ira Klein, P (1974), Population and Agriculture in Northern India, 1872-1921 (1 ed.), Cambridge University Press 
  • Drwon S. linker, P (1913), The History of Great Maratha invasion in Northern India, 1705-1805 (3 ed.), Oxford University Press 
  • Meyer Sir William Stevenson, 1860-1922, P (1909), The Imperial Gazetteer of India, Vol.20 (1 ed.), Oxford Clarendon Press 


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External links

This article contains Indic text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks or boxes, misplaced vowels or missing conjuncts instead of Indic text.

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel


Pilibhit is a city in Pilibhit District, Uttar Pradesh. 48 km. from Bareilly,it is greenest area and there are so many locations to visit.

Get in

By train

From Lucknow it is 250 Km and takes 6 hours. Train route is meter gauge from Lucknow. Well connected from Lucknow and Bareilly through roads and rail.


An Oasis in the feilds on the Pilibhit - Bisalpur Road. ITC's Choupal Sagar, where you can shop for your daily needs as well go on a shopping spree collecting clothes from the John Players range.

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

PILIBHIT, a town and district of British India, in the Bareilly division of the United Provinces. The town - pop. (1901), 33,490 - contains the mosque of Hafiz Rahmat Khan, the Rohilla chieftain, built in the second half of the 18th century. Trade is mainly in agricultural produce, and in the products of the neighbouring Himalayan territory and Nepal.

The District Of Pilibhit has an area of 1350 sq. m.; pop. (1901), 470,339, showing a decrease of 3% in the decade. Though so near the Himalayas it is entirely a plain. In its midst is the Mala swamp. The east is forest-clad, poor and unhealthy; on the other side of the Mala the land becomes more fertile. The chief river is the Sarda, and the Gumti rises in the east. The principal crops are rice, pulses, wheat and sugar-cane. Sugar-refining is carried on, and sugar, wheat, rice and hemp are exported. The Lucknow-Bareilly section of the Oudh & Rohilkhand railway runs through the district, a portion of which is watered by the Rohilkhand canals.

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