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Economy of Dhanbad

Dhanbad is a city renowned for coal mining. It is a commercial centre and is the base for many public sector, private sector and government undertakings. It comes next to Jamshedpur in terms of urban population. The economy of Dhanbad is dependent upon coal based industries and the district comprises of about 112 coal mining unit. The magnitude of coal based economy can be gauged from the fact that 27.5 million tonnes of coal is produced here and 7000 million rupees worth revenue is generated through this. A number of coal washeries too exist in this district.
Dhanbad Town

Damodar is an important river passing through Dhanbad. Maithon and Panchet are two hydro power generation units here. Power is generated by coal bedded methane (CBM) in a few mining units (of ONGC). Thermal Power plant belonging to Damodar Valley Corporation and Tata Power companies compliment power generation in this region.

Various industries have constructed townships for the employees to provide them with congenial living conditions, medical assistance and educational benefits. Transport via railways and roadways is satisfactory and aids business in the city. Dhanbad has been included in the freights corridor of Indian Railways. This too has contributed to the economy of this third largest city of Jharkhand.

Another aspect of economy fast developing in Dhanbad is real estate business. However, in 2006, it was counted among most backward districts of India by the Indian government. It is thus receiving funds from Backward Regions Grant Fund Programme (BRGF). Jharia is  famous for coal mandi (market centre) in Dhanbad district and is a mining price index centre.

There are not too many tourist attractions in Dhanbad. However, nearby gateways do make for an interesting holiday trip. A visit to coal mines and washeries is no less a learning experience about ''black diamond''.
The primary economic activities of people in Dhanbad are employment in mines, industries (Public or Private sector enterprises), agriculture, cottage industries and making of traditional craft items. Poultry, dairy, sericulture are also gaining attention as is pig, sheep or goat rearing. Agricultural crops grown here are paddy, gram, arhar, potato, wheat, oil seeds, maize, mahua and vegetables. Principal horticultural crops include jack fruit, guava and papaya. Agriculture in the district is primarily rain fed. There are three crop seasons:

  •     Kharif: Main kharif crops are maize, jowar, bajra and paddy.
  •     Rabi: Major rabi crops include wheat, gram, linseed, barley, mustard and rapeseed.
  •     Summer: Groundnut, maize and rice are grown in summer season.

Krishi Vigyan Kendra, (KVK: State agricultural department) and ATMA impart on-farm training programmes on organic farming and other agricultural knowhow. The entire district has benefited by ''Hariyali Yogana'' and distribution of quality seeds, fertilizers and pesticides to small  and marginal farmers, thanks to efforts of State government. However, use of technology in farming can encourage better produce. This has also given a green signal to investors to invest in this sector.

For proper sale-purchase of food grains by farmers and wholesalers at appropriate prices, there is an agricultural market complex at Barbadda along with cold storage. There are also many ''rural haats'' serving this purpose. Agriclinics and agribusiness, rain water harvesting tanks have been set up and irrigation infrastructure has been strengthened.

The district comprises of vast tracts of cultivable/uncultivated wasteland. This along with favourable climate, make for a fertile base for growing eucalyptus, sesame, bamboo, ber, jack fruit etc. The numerous Palash trees in this region open the gates of opportunity for lac cultivation. The National Bamboo Mission has been sponsored by Central Government for promoting improved varieties of bamboo, increase its coverage area and promote marketing of bamboo and handicrafts made of bamboo. Animal husbandry, pisciculture and dairy farming are other means of livelihood for rural people as they get good returns with minimum investment. This occupation is carried out in hilly, drought prone and under developed areas by marginal farmers and landless workers.

There is potential for :

  •     Lac and sericulture (tassar plantations, cocoon  banks) in Tundi Block.
  •     Flouriculture in Baliyapur, Govindpur and Nirsa Blocks.
  •     Organic farming development.

Public and Private Sector Units in Dhanbad:

  • Central Mining Research Institute
  • Central Fuel  Research Institute
  • Bharat Coking Coal Limited : BCCL (Subsidiary of Coal India Ltd.)
  • Eastern Coalfields Limited, Mugma area.
  • Damodar Valley Corporation
  • Fertilizer Corporation of India Limited.
  • Hindustan Zinc Limited
  • Project & Development India Limited
  • Mineral Area Development Authority
  • DGMS (Directorate General of Mines Safety --- regulatory agency for safety in mines).
  • Central Institute of Mining and Fuel Research (CIMFR) 
  • CMPF (Coal Mines Provident Fund Organization)
  • CCWO (Central Coal Washery organization)
  • CCSO (Central Coal Supply Organization),Saraidhela.
  • BEML Ltd. (formerly Bharat Earth Movers Ltd.) --- manufactures rail coaches and mining equipment.

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