Background: Prior to the States reorganization, i.e., on 1st November 1956, the District was officially known as Nimar District and formed part of Mahakoshal region of the erst-while Madhya Pradesh. The western part of old Prant Nimar originally held by the Holkar, became a part of Madhya Bharat, when that state was formed in the year 1948. As on the reorganization of States, Madhya Bharat region was merged in Madhya Pradesh, the western part of old Prant Nimar eventually became a part if Madhya Pradesh. This tract with its headquarters at Khargone, also happened to retain its old name of Nimar, and being to the west of the District of former Nimar of Mahakoshal region, was named as Nimar(West) or West Nimar, while the District was officially renamed as Nimar(East) or East Nimar from 1st November, 1956. On august,15, 2003 the District has been divided into Khandwa & Burhanpur district.
Location and boundaries: Khandwa District is situated South West of the state of Madhya Pradesh The District is in Indore Division of Madhya Pradesh. maximum and minimum height above mean sea level is 905.56 m and 180.00 m respectively. The District is bounded on the east by the Betul and Hoshangabad District of Hoshangabad division, and Burhanpur District of Indore Division on south, on the west by West Nimar District of Indore division,and on the north by Dewas District of the Indore Division.
Administrative Divisions: The District for the purpose of general and revenue administration has been divided into three sub-divisions viz., Khandwa, Pandhana, Harsud. and Five tehsils, viz., Khandwa, Pandhana, Harsud, Punasa and Khalwa. The tehsils have been further sub-divided into revenue inspector’s circles and and patwari circles for revenue administration.
The Sub-divisional & Tehsil HQ of Harsud Sub-Divisio and Tehsil has been shifted to New-Harsud (Chhanera) Due to displacement under Indira Sagar Project.
Natural Divisions: The District lies, for the most part, on the uplands between and valleys of the two major rivers, the Narmada and Tapti are flowing parallel to each other from east to west through the District. The Hatti hill range border and overlooks the Tapti valley in the south throughout its length in the District. The major natural division of the District correspond to the two distinct physiographic division, viz.,
- The Narmada Valley
- The main Satpura ranges
The general height of the contour in Nimar (East) is about 1,000 Ft. (304.8 meters) above means sea level but the elevations range from 618 Ft. (188.4 metros) in the bed of the Narmada in the extreme north west to 3,010. (917.5 meters) at Pipardol peak of the Hatti range.
Drainage:The drainage of the District falls under the Narmada and the Tapti river systems. The water-parting line between the two river-systems runs along the crest of the northern rang of the Satpura. The major portion of the District, north of this line, except the low tracts of Chandgarh and Selani, drains towards the north onto the Narmada through the Chhota Tawa and Kaveri rivers and a large number of small streams. The tracts north of the Narmada slope towards the south and the drainage is represented by the rills and rivulets joining the Narmada to the south.
Seismicity:The District lies in a seismic zone where light to moderate earthquakes are possible although it is a part of the stable Peninsular Shield of India known as ‘Horst Block’ and is outside the main earthquake belt of India, viz., The Himalayan Arc. The epicentre of the famous Satpura Earthquake of 14th March,1938 was located very close to the west of District (21O 32′ N -75O50′ E) at which occasion the Western part of the District came under M.M.Intensity VII and the Eastern part came under M.M. Intensity VI. Pandhana Tehsil of the District has been the centre of Micro-Earthquake activities followed by surface rumbling sound .Maximum of which occurred between 11th Dec.1998 to 5th April 1999. The studies shows that the major earthquake cannot be overlooked in this area.
Climate: The District falls in the drier part of India. Average annual rainfall in the District is 808 mm. The northern part of the District receives more rainfall than the southern part. The monsoon season starts approximately by 10th June every year and extends up to early October. The days are quite humid. The maximum temperature recorded in the month of May is 45O C and minimum recorded in the month of December as 10OC
Occupation: Major part of the working mass is in the primary sector agriculture. per family average farm size is low and the adoption of traditional form of agriculture, the majority of peasants are earning for livelihood only. the agricultural labour is also sizable part of the total population.
Language: Hindi is a common medium of communication in the urban part of District. Nimari is spoken in the rural area of North-West part of the District whereas Korku, Bhili as the mode of communication in the tribal area respectively. Northern part comprises of Malvi and Korku spoken mass in the nontribal and tribal respectively. Gujarati, Rajasthani etc. are also spoken in several social circles, like Bohra etc.
Communal life – Pilgrim Centres and Jatras: Mandhata is famous pilgrim centre in the District. Throughout the year, a number of pilgrims from distant parts of the country visit the place. In the month of Kartika a fair is held at this place, which is attended by a number of pilgrims. About 40 fairs are held in the District. Fairs or Jatras of importance are held at Pipaliya-Singaji, Daata-Saheb’s fair at Malagaon, Baba Bukhardas’s fair at Chhanera, Bageshwari Devi’s fair at Borgaon, Kajal Devi’s fair at Punasa, Brahmagir Maharaja’s fair at Sivna, Shivaratri’s fairs at Rustumpur, Suktakhurd , Nimbola, Sival, Khaknar, Dongergaon, fair in the name of Lord Shri Rama at Jamaniya, in the name of Hanumaan at Barziri, Ukhadgaon, Mohangarh. Main urs of Muslim community are urs-mahals urs at Guradiya, Khwaza Sahebs urs at Rahimpura, Navgaz Pir urs at Pokharkalan.
Folk Dances:The rich heritage of communal dances is still preserved by the Rajputs, Gujars,Korkus, Naagar Brahmins, and Banjaras. The Dance of the Rajput male is known as Gair and Kimadi while their female-folk is called khada. Among the Gujars, the male folk, perform dip dance. The favourite male dance of Korkus is susur, whereas gadolia is female-folk of the same. Gujarati Communities female folk is garba. Kathi is Nimar’s famous folk dance.
Gammat (Play) are the favourite pastimes of the rural mass.