(First Edition 1992)











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Chapter I


v     Introductory

v     Topography

v     River System and Water Resources

v     Geology

v     Flora

v     Fauna

v     Climate


(a)      Introductory

(i)                 Origin of the Name of the District —The district derives its name from the city of Patiala, which was founded by Raja Ala Singh, the first independent ruler of the Patiala State. The name of Patiala city consists of two words, ‘Pati’ and ‘Ala’. ‘Pati’ means territory and ‘Ala’ is the name of the founder. Baba Ala Singh laid its foundation in about 1762. He took an active part in 1763 in the overthrow of Zain Khan, the Afghan Governor of Sirhind. After this victory, the town of Sirhind and its neighbourhood were handed over to Raja Ala Singh. He encouraged the inhabitants of Sirhind to settle at his newly founded town of Patiala, where he soon after built a fort.

(ii)               Location, General Boundaries, Total Area and Population of the District —Patiala is one of the four districts in Patiala Division. Forming the south-eastern part of the State, it lies between 29°-49’ and 30-47’ north latitude and 75-58’ and 76-54’ east longitude. It is surrounded by Ludhiana, Rupnagar district and Union Territory of Chandigarh in north, Sangrur District (which stretches parallel to it) in the west, Ambala and Kurukshetra districts (Haryana State) in the esta and Jind District (Haryana State) in the south.

Patiala, the headquarters of the district administration is diectly linked by road with Chandigarh (70 km), Ludhiana (96 km), Delhi (253 Km) and Sangrur (56 km). It is directly linked by rail with Rajpura and Bathinda. All the municipal towns of the district except Amloh, Samana and Dera Bassi have railway stations.

According to Director of Land Records, Punjab, Jalandhar, the area of Patiala District in 1985-86 was 4,628 sq. km. In terms of area, the district ranks 6th in the State after Firozpur, Faridkot, Bathinda, Sangrur and Amritsar district. The tahsilwise area of the district, in 1985-86 is given below:

Tahsil Area (sq. km.)

Patiala                         1,112,37

Nabha                         862.84

Rajpura                       1,138.03

Fatehgarh Sahib           701.47

Samana                       813.29

District Patiala :           4,628.00

(Source : Director, Land Records, Punjab, Jalandhar)

According to the 1981 Census, the population of the district was 15,68,898 persons (11,04,603 rural, 4,64,295 urban) comprising 8,41,916 males and 7,26,982 females.

(iii)              History of the District as an Administrative Unit and the changes in its Component Parts —Patiala was the headquarters of princely State of Patiala. Prior to 1919, it was a tahsil headquarter of Bhawanigarh District of Patiala State. In 1919, the districts of State were reoganised and Patiala was made a district with three tahsils, viz. Rajpura, Patiala and Ghanaur. Later on, Ghanaur Tahsil was merged in Patiala Tahsil. On 20 August 1948 when PEPSU (Patiala and East Punjab States Union) was formed, the district again underwent a territorial change. Nabha Tahsil of erstwhile Nabha State was merged in this district.

In 1950, 5 villages of the district were transferred in the then Ambala District, two patwar circles of the district were transferred to Ludhiana District and one patwar circle Sidhuwal of Karnal District was transferred to the district. In 1953, Fatehgarh Sahib and Kandaghat districts of PEPSU were abolished and their whole area was included in the district. In 1956, at the time of merger of PEPSU with Punjab State, 55 villages of former Kalsia State were transferred to Rajpura Tahsil of the district. In January 1964, 82 villages of sub-tahsil Payal were transferred to Ludhiana District and 4 villages to Sangrur District. In 1972, 23 villages of Fatehgarh Sahib Tahsil of the district were transferred to Kharar Tahsil of Rupnagar District. Subsequently, 4 more villages of Fatehgarh Sahib Tahsil were transferred to Kharar Tahsil and 9 villages of Kharar Tahsil were transferred to Rajpura Tahsil of the district in 1974.


(iv)             Subdivisions, Tahsils and Thanas—According to 1981 Census, the district comprised 1,470 villages (1,426 inhabited and 35 uninhabited and 9 merged in towns) and 13 towns constituted into five tahsils, viz. Patiala 9358 villages), Nabha (268 villages), and Samana (137 villages), Nabha (268 villages), Rajpura (429 villages), Fatehgarh Sahib (269 villages), and Samana (137 villages). All the tahsils have been made subdivisions—Patiala in 1962, Nabha in 1948, Rajpura in 1960, Fatehgarh Sahib in 1953 and Samana in 1970.

Besides, there are 4 sub-tahsils, viz. Amloh (formed in 1948) in tahsil Nabha, Dera Bassi in tahsil Rajpura, Patran in tahsil Samana and Dudhan Sadhan in tahsil Patiala all formed in 1970.

The tahsilwise list of police stations and police stations and police posts has been given in Chapter XII ‘Law and Order and Justice’.

(b)             Topography*

Topography refers to the configuration of land surface. The undulations or smoothness of land surface along with its slopes and surface materials exert a strong influence on human activities of an area and Patiala District is no exception.

The district forms a part of the Indo-Gangetic plain. It is composed of materials deposited by rivers during recent geological past. These deposits belong to the quarternary era and thus are either equal to or less than 1.8 million years in age. The district is a level plain with gentle slopes. It has highest elevation of 320 metres near village Nimbnia located in extreme east-central part of Rajpura Tahsil. The lowest elevation of the district has been obsereved near village Kutbanpur located in southern part of Samana Tahsil. Its land surface slopes in the north-east-south-east direction with a gentle gradient of about 0.8 metre per kilometre. Direction of flow and sinuous courses of streams flowing through the district are evident of the same. The following are the elevations of some important stations of the district. :-


Name of the Station

Height in Metres

Dera Bassi






Mandi Gobindgarh













The district has mean elevation of about 265 metres. It extends over a distance of about 91 kilometres in the east-west direction and nearly 113 kilometres in the north-south direction. Its geographical centre roughly coincides with Patiala City where the headquarters of the district are located. Thus the district administration of Patiala is centrally located.

Physiographic Division

As mentioned earlier, Patiala District is a part of the great north Indian plain. Its land surface is flat and featureless. However, if viewed microscopically, there do exist some minor variations in its topography. Accordingly, this flat plain may be divided into the following three types of regions:-

The Upland Plan

The Cho-infested Foothill Plain

The Floodplain of the Ghaggar River


(a)       The Upland Plain —This terrain unit singly covers about 80 per cent of the total area of the district. Leaving aside a small cho-infested tract in the north-east and a narrow belt running along river Ghaggar in the east, south-east and south, the whole of the district is covered by this unit. It is higher in elevation than the flood plain but is lower than the cho-infested plain. In general, its land surface is smooth. However, the smoothness of its surface is smooth. However, the smoothness of its surface is distributed by the presence of sand dunes in its western part. Accordingly, this physiographic unit may be further divided into two sub regions:--

(i)                 The Eastern Upland Plain

(ii)               The Western Upland Plain

(i)                 The Eastern Upland Plain

The eastern upland plain covers the whole of Fatehgarh Sahib Tahsil, most of Rajpura Tahsil and eastern as well as sourthern areas of Patiala Tahsil. This terrain unit is falt and featureless. Being alluvial in origin, its soils are well drained and fairly fertile. Sub-soil water conditions over here are favourable for the development of tubewell irrigation. Its flat land surface coupled with easily workable loamy soils and favourable groundwater situation provide excellent conditions for agriculture. No wonder, almost the whole of its cultivable land is subjected to agriculture. Its agriculture is highly developed. Wheat and rice are its major crops.

(ii)              The Western Upland Plain

The western upland plain occupies the whole of Nabha and Samana tahsils and north-western and western parts of Patiala Tahsil. This part of the upland plain is superimposed by sand dunes at various places. These monds of sand, popularly known as tibas, are founded in belts. Those areas of this plain which are not affected by snad features are more or less like the eastern sub region discussed above. Fast blowing winds from neighbouring Thar desert in the past deposited sand in the form of dunes in linear belts. Generally, dunes extend in south-west-north –east monsoons. Their height from the surface range between 2 to 10 metres. Majority of them, however, are about 5 metres in height. Their length varies from a minimum of a few metres to a maximum of over a kilometre. Most of them, of course, are less than half a kilometre in length. These monds of sand are gradully disappearing. As a result of the growing pressure of population on limited land, mechanization of farm operations, extension of tubewell irrigation over the dune sites and growing commercialization in agriculture, many of them have been reclaimed. This is especailly true of the post 1966 (Green Revolution) period. The energetic and hardworking farmers have installed tubewells over these sand features and have levelled them with their tractors for practising irrigation. Some of them, however, still are visible. Even those levelled have left their marks in the form of sandy soils and relatively elevated fields at their original sites. This terrain unit is also cultivated to its near limits. However, its sandy parts are less productive. Wheat and rice are its major crops. Sandy soils of this region are devoted to groundout, cotton, jowar, bajra, pulses, etc.

The Cho-infested Foothill Plain —This terrain unit occupies nearly 4 per cent of the area of Patiala District. It covers eastern most part of Rajpura Tahsil. Its western boundary is demarcated roughly by the Chandigarh-Ambala Highway, whereas its southern boundary is marked by a line joining Lalru town with Rani Majra village. Its eastern boundary, of course conincides with the district boudary. Its elevation ranges between 290 and 320 meteres. Thus, it is located at a higher elevation than the rest of the district. Its gradient too is steeper. It slopes at the rate of 2.5 metres per kilometre (as against the district’s average of 0.8) in the north-east-south-west direction. A number of seasonal streams, locally known as chos traverse through this unit, which is its special feature. They originate in the Shiwalik Hills and after traversing this region join either the Ghaggar River or any of its tributaries. These hill torrents bring floods during rainy season and spread sand on the neighbouring lands. The soils of this region are expose. They are lighter, porous, and hence are less fertile. A notable part of its land is under the beds of seasonal streams and thus is not available for cultivation. Underground water over here is deep and inadequate. As a result, slow. Agriculturally, this is the least developed part of the district. Wheat, maize and rice are predominantly grown in this region.

(c) The Floodplain of the Ghaggar River—This terrain unit covers nearly 16 per cent of the total area of the district. It runs in a narrow belt all along the river. Being a mighty river in the past, its floodplain extends upto 6 kilometers on both sides of the river at places. However, its current floodplain is not more than 3 kilometres in width on either side of the river at any place. Its present floodplain is flooded during heavy rainfall years. It results in damanging crops in low lying areas. However, in relatively higher areas, its floods bring boom for rice cultivators. Floods deposit silt and enrich its soils. Its soils are heavier (silty-loams) and area ideal for the cultivation of rice. Sub-soil water in this tract is relatively close to the surface and is found in adequate amount. This fact has encouraged the development of tubewell irrigation. Wheat and rice are its major crops.

(c) River System and Water Resources

River Ghaggar and its tributaries form a major natural drainage system of the district. Apart from this, some canals too flow through it for considerable length.

Ghaggar River —Ghaggar is the most important water channel of the district. It was once a mighty river with Yamuna and Satluj as its tributaries. At that time, it formed a part of the Indus system. But the uplift of Yamuna-Satluj divide in the past is considered to have shifted Yamuna to the east and Satluj to the west, leaving Ghaggar as a misfit river. Now it loses itself in the sands of the Thar desert.

River Ghaggar originates in Sirmaur District of Himachal Pradesh, flows through the Himalayas for some distance ultimately to enter Punjab plains near Panchkula town of Kalka Tahsil in Haryana. Flowing further down for a short distance, it enters Paitala District near Mubarakpur village. After entering the district, it continues its march in an overall north-east-south-west direction. It passes through the eastern, south-eastern and southern parts of the district. It traverses approximately 110 kilometers of distance within Patiala District. After flowing for a distance of about 80 kilometers, it leaves the district near village Jalalpur of Patiala Tahsil and re-enters near village Rattan Heri in Samana Tahsil. Thereafter, it flows towards south along the eastern boundary of tahsil Samana upto Rasauli village from where it turns towards south-west and finally leaves the district near Gulahar village of Samana Tahsil. On the way, it is joined by a number of seasonal streams, such as Dangri Nadi, Markanda River and Patialewali Nadi at various points of its course. Ghaggar is essentially a seasonal stream. It contains a streak of water in tis upper course throughout the year, but reamins dry in its lower parts duirng most of the year. However, during rainy seasons, it is full of water. It is flooded during heavy rainfall years and affect the life and property of the people settled in its floodplian. It has a braided course in its upper parts where its channel is shallow and wide. Its depth ranges from 2 to 4 metres in Rajpura Tahsil. But in Patiala and Samana tahsils, the depth of its channel increases from 7 to 9 meteres. Along with it becomes narrow. The water of this river has so far not been used for any purpose.

Dangri Nadi  - After originating in the outer Himalayas, it flows for most of its length through Ambala District of Haryana. It passes through Patiala District at two places (i) south-eastern tip of Rajpura Tahsil for about 8 kilometres and (ii) south-eastern Patiala Tahsil for nearly 30 kilometres. Further down, it  merges with Ghaggar River. It is a seasonal steam. Although it traverses only a distance of 30 kilometres in Patiala Tahsi, yet is known for severe floods over there. Recently, it has been channelized. But it breaks its embankments during heavy rainfall years and damages crops. It flows through a narrow and entrenched channel of 2 to 3 metres deep in Patiala Tahsil. However, it is wider and less deep in Rajpura Tahsil.

Patialewali Nadi —This seasonal stream originates from the Shiwalik Hills. Afterr traversing some distance in Kharar Tahsil of Rupnagar District, enters Patiala District near Machhli Kalan village in Rajpura Tahsil. Further down, it passes through northern parts of Rajpura and estern parts of Fatehgarh Sahib tahsils. Flowing further, it enters Patiala Tahsil from the north, touches Patiala city and moves south-east to join river Ghaggar near village Ratta Khera. It is known as Patiala Rao till Patiala city beyond which its name changes to Patialewali Nadi. It has a total length of about 95 kilometres within the district. It has been channelized during recent years. As a result, it rarely fllods neighbouring areas.

Sirhind Choa —Sirhind choa is another seasonal stream of the district. It originates near Sirhind twon from the rain waters of the area. Jainti Devi-ki-Rao, another seasonal stream, which terminates in this area might be partly contributing to its origin. It flows through northern parts of Fatehgarh Sahib, and central parts of Nabha Tahsil ultimately to leave the district near Chhintanwala village. It has a total length of about 80 kilometres within the district. It is known as Sirhind Choa till second feeder of Sirhind Canal after which its name changes to Choa Nala. It remains dry except during rainy season.

Jhambowali Choi.—This seasonal stream originates near Chanarthal Kalan in Fatehgarh Sahib Tahsil by taking rain waters of the area. Thereafter, it flows southward through Patial and Samana tahsils before falling into Bhupinder Sagar lake. Beyond this lake, it leaves Patiala District to join river Ghaggar. It has a total length of about 95 kilometres within the district.

Tangauri Choi.—This drainage line originates from the sewerage and rain water of the Chandigarh City and areas around it. After flowing for some distance through Kharar Tahsil of Rupnagar District, it enters Patiala District near Kalauli village in Rajpura Tahsil. Flowing further down to the south-west, it touches outskirts of Rajpura town after which it runs south ultimately to join river Ghaggar near village Sural Kalan. It is seasonal in character and is full of water during rainy season. However, it does not dry completely during other seasons. It contains a streak of water during other seasons too because of the disposal of sewerage waters of Chandigarh City into it.

Since its water is charged with sewerage contents, it is highly beneficial for crops. That is why the local farmers pump it at many places for irrigation. By doing so, they have succeeded in extracting bumper crops. Sometimes, the farmers enter into feuds and faction among each other for securing its water. Thus, it creates social problem as well.

Besides the above mentioned drainage lines, there are a few others which are also seasonal in nature and shorter in length. They originate within or outside the district, flow for short distance within in and are lost.

Canals —Apart from the natural drainage lines, the district has some man made water channels too. Of this category, Bhakra Canal is the most important. It runs through the centre of the district in north-south direction for a distance of about 110 kilometres. Sirhind Canal is another drainage line of this type. It runs for a length of about 32 kilometres through south-easter parts of Nabha Tahsil. These main canals, through their branches, distributaries and minors, provide irrigation water to various areas of the district.

Other Water Bodies —A lake and innumerable ponds are the other water bodies of the district. Bhupinder Sagar is its important lake. It is located in southern part of Samana Tahsil. It is about 12 kilometres in length and one kilometre in breadth. It is fed by Choa Nala, and is full of water during rainy season. Its water level is minimum in summer months.

Besides, the district has a large number of water ponds. These are typical of each village settlement. Invariably, the water of village settlements drains into them. These are the heavens of water for buffaloes who bath in them, especially during summer months for evading scorching heat. Some of these ponds get dried in summer. They are full of water during the monsoon period. These act as breading grounds for mosquitoes.

(d)       Geology 

(i) Geological Formation —The whole of the area of Patiala District is covered by Indo-Gangetic alluvium which consists of sandy clay, sand, clay, gravel, pebble and kankar. The lithology of the area is not unioform. A close study of the lithological logs reveals that except for the major units, the sub-surface geology is marked by heterogeneity.

In Rajpura area, the major units occur in a definite pattern which is as follows :

1                    Soft clay, slightly sandy (sandy clay)

2                    Hard clay (locally known as Chis)

3                    Coarse greyish sand

The first unit, i.e. sandy clay occurs upto an average depth of 4.18 metres, the second at 9 metres and the third at 17.92 metres. The marked variation in depth and thickness of the units suggests the alluvium deposits of the area have been brought by the nallas flowing from the Shiwalik Hills. The alluvium deposits have been responsible for the introduction of hetrogeneity in the lithological column.

(ii)       Mineral Resources —The district is poor as regards mineral wealth. A few minor minerals are, however, found.

Kankar—It is massive, hard and compact nodular calcareous material light grey to dark grey. Sand, silt and clay are found associated with kankar. In general, its thickness varies from a few centimetres to that of a metre. It occurs mostly in the form of isolated beds and pockets. It can be used for white washing and road metalling. Kankar occurs in Wazidput and Dogal area in the district.

Saltpetre —Saltpetre is a general trade name for all the nitrates of sodium, potassiium and calcium. Nitrates of potassium are known as nitre of saltpetre whereas those of sodium are called sodanitre, caliche or chile saltpetre. Well saltpetre or notrocalcite is the nitrate of Ca. It is seen that like any other crop saltpetre also grows. It appears on the surface as an alkaline efforescence during summer month. It is used in manufacture of gun powder, preparation of agricultural fertilizers, etc.

Occurrences of saltpetre are reported from areas around Rajpura (32° 29’ : 75° 36’) and on either side of the Patiala-Chandigarh road.

Alkaline Earth.—Some brick earth and foundary sands are reported from the district.

Groundwater—Groundwater occurs both under phreatic and confined conditions. The depth of water is comparatively shallow in the areas lying in the vicinity of canals and adjacent to the Ghaggar River. The depth to water ranges from 1.0 m to 12 m below ground level.

Exploration has been carried out in the eastern parts of the district down to a maximum depth of 590 m. This has revealed that the aquifers in the area are constituted of silt and very fine sand.  A tubewell at Dhappar constructed to a depth of 308.30 metres yields a discharge of 2680 LPM for a drawndown of 21 metres. The shallow tubewells are found to be successful long the sides of Ghaggar River. The yield ranges from 300 to 450 LPM.

Flowing conditions exist at Bhankarpur and around Banur. Groundwater movement in the district is from north-east to south-west. The groundwater in general is suitable for irrigation and domestic purposes.

(iii)              Seismicity—Seismically, the district of Patiala lies in a region which is liable to moderate damage by earthquakes. Earthquakes of slight to moderate intensity are occasionally reported rom this region. Of the earthquakes which caused damage to structures in this area in the past, mention may be made of the Kangra earthquakes which caused damange to structures in this area in the past, mention may be made of the Kangra earthquake of 4 April 1905 and Chamba earthquake of 22 June 1945. Due to proximity of Himalayan Boundary fault, which is not far from Patiala, damage to structures due to destructive earthquakes originating from this fault, cannot be precluded.

In the seismiczonic map of India prepared under the auspices of Indian Standards Institution, the area has been placed in zone III and close to zone IV’ which corresponds to maximum seismic intensity of VII M.M. for zone III and VIII MM for zone IV’. During the Kangra earthquake of 1905, the intensity of Patiala reached VII in M M scale. The intensity VII corresponds to horizontal ground acceleration range of 18-40 cm/sec or an average acceleration fo 67 cm/sec in one direction. Intensity VIII corrresponds to a hortizontal ground acceleration of 51-350 c/sec or an average acceleration of 172 cm/sec. The wide range of variation in acceleration is due to the fact that acceleration is larger on soft filled up ground and less on hard rock.

(e)       Flora

The flora of the district does not differ much from that of the adjoining districts of Punjab. The common trees found in the district are : Acacia senegal Willd., Wjightia tinctoria R.Br., Cordia dichotoma Forest. F., Anogeissus pendula Edgew., Boswellia serrata Roxb., Balanites aegyptiaca (L.) Del. The thorny shruby vegetation consists of Euphorbia nivuli Buch.-Ham., Capparis sepiaria L., C. decidua (Forsk.) Edgew, Mimosa hamata Willd., Grewia tenax Fieri, Maytenus emarginatus (Willd.) Dinghow, Meesua obongifolia A. Rich, and typical lithophyte Corbichonia decumbens (Forsk.) Exell. During rainy season many annuals come up which belong to the genera Tibulus, Vernonia, Euphorbia, Corchorus, Cenchrus, Oropetium, Aristida and Melanocenchrus etc. Species of Rhynchosia, Melothria, Pergularia and Ipomoea are common climbers.

Since major portion of land is under cultivation, there are no reserve forests in the district. However, areas unfit for cultivation are used for planting firewood trees.

Acacia nilotica (L.) Del. Subsp. Tomentosa (Bth.) Brenan is the most common tree in the district. Rest of the trees are generally planted. Among the species which are generally seen throughout along the road of in or around the villages and canala banks are Kigelia pinnata DC., Butea monosperma (Lamk.) Taub. (Dhak, Palas), Mangifera indica L.(Am), Ficus religiosa L. (Peepal), F. bengalense L. (Bar, Bargad), Ehretia aspera Roxb. Etc. Those planted in the garden include Swietenia mahogoni Jacq., Murraya panicultata (L.) Jack. Pterospermum acerifolium Willad., Himbuscus schizopetalus Hook. F. (Gulhar), Bauhinia corymbosa Roxb., Caesalpinia pulcherrima (L.) Swartz. (Krishnachari), Delonix regia (Boj) Ruf (Gulmohar) Hardwickia binnata Roxb., Saraca asoca (Roxb.) De Wilde, Clitoria ternata L., Erythrina suberosa Roxb. (Dhoolohak), Sesbania grandiflora Pers., Callistemon lanceolata DC. (Bottal Brass), Alastonia scholaris (L.) R. Br., Helianthusannusas L. (Suraj-mukh), Euphorbia Pulcherrima Willd exKolotz.  Ricinus communis L. and Tagetus minuta L. (Genda) etc.

The herbaceous flora include Ranunculus arvensis L. Alysicarpus bupleurifolius DC, Tephrosia purpurea Pers., Circium aryense (L.) Scop. (Bhur-bhur), Sonchus oleraceus L. (Pili Dhuti, Dadak), Verbesina encelioides (Cav.) A. Gay which is poisonous to cattle, Xanthium streumarium L. (Chota-dhatura), Sphenoclea zeylancia Gaertn., Calotropis procera R. Br. (Ak, Madar), Solanum nigrum L (Makoo). Heniadel phus polyspermus Nees, Polygonum glabrarum Willd., Euphorbia granulata Forsk, E. hirta L. etc.

The district is rich in weeds which commonly occur along the roads, waste places and in cultivated lands and gardens. Among such weeds are : Chenopodium anbrosioides L., C. murale L. (Bathewa), Croton bonplandianum Bail., Scoparia dulcis L., Acanthospermum hispidum DC., Trichodesma amplexicaule Roth (Nela Karai), Ammi majus L., Vicia griffithii Baker, Lathyrus sphaericus Retz., Coronopus didymus (L.) Smith Rorippa indica (L.) Hiern. etc.

A number of aquatic species are found in ponds and canals. Species of green algae can be collected soon after the rains. They decay as the climate becomes hotter. In still water, Chara and Nitella are among the common species. Among the common submerged hydrophytes are Villisneria, Zannichellia, Ceraphyllum, Hydrilla Potamogeton and Najas etc. Whereas Potamogeton nodosus Pori., Ipomoea reptans Pori, Sagittaria Sagittifolia L., Nymphaea nouchali Burm. f. and Marsilea minuta L. are among the floating species rooted in the mud. L. are among the free floating species are Aponogeton natans (L.) Engl. & Krause, Lemna paucicostate Hgal, Spirodela polyrrhiza (L.) Schleid, Trapa natans L. var. bispinosa (Roxb.) Makino (Singara), Eichhornia crassipes Solms. and Azolla pinnata R. Br. etc. , while in moist places slightly away from the canal banks, species like Alhagi pseudalhagi Desv., Equisetum sp., Grangea maderaspatana Poir., Vetiveria zizanioides Nash, Polygonum bartbatum L., P. plebejum R. Br., Centella asiatica Urb. Rorippa indica Hiern. and Ageratum conyzoides L. etc. are commonly seen.

Common grasses found in the district are Cynodon dactylon (L.) Poir (Doob), Vetiveria zizanioides (L.) Nash (Panni), Andropogon pumilus Roxb., Paspalidium flaccidum (Burm). A Camus, Lophochloa pumila (Desf.) Cynodon dactylon (L.) Poir and Andropogon pumilus Roxb. Are much valued as cattle fodder.

A number of sedges occur in marshy places. These are : Cyperus difformia L., Cyperus diffuses Vall. C. iria L., Fimbristylis ovata (Burm.) Kern, Scirpus meritima L. and S. roylei (Nees) Duthie etc. Phoenix sylvestris (L.) Roxb (Khajiur) is sometimes seen in sandy areas.

There are no reserve forests in the district. Birs are Government owned lands under the control of the Divisional Forest Officer. Some of them, have been delcared as Wild Life sanctuaries or converted into zoological parks. Among the Wild Life sanctuaries, Moti Bagh Patiala, Bir Bhunheri and Bir Guridyal Pura are worth mentioning.

Certain birs have bave transferred to other departments e.g. Bir Beran in Nabha transferred to Jail Department. The entire area of Bir Chhat has been converted into a zoological park.

Afforestation work particularly social forestry was greatly facilitated due to network of canal system after the independence. Large number of tree species like Dalbergia sissoo Roxb.(Sissam), Syzygium cumini (L.) Skeeks (Jamu,), Mangifera india L. (Am), Azadirachta indica Juss. (Neem), Albizia lebbeck Bth. (Siris), Acacia nilotica (L. Willd. Ex. Del. Subsp. Indica (Kikar), Prosopis cineraria L. Druce (Jand), Butea monosperma (Lamk.) (Dhak, Palas), Terminalia arjuna (Roxb.) Wt. & Arn. (Arjan) and Eucalyptus Species, etc. have been planted in and around the villages throughout  the district. In places unfit for cultivataion, Diospyros logifolia Roxb. (Kaindu) trees are raised for fuel wood which gradually reduce the consumption of cow dung which is now generally employed as manure. Timber of this tree is also used for making good quality furniture, agricultural implements and for the construction of houses in the rural areas. Special attention also has been paid for the regular supply of raw material like Eucalyptus wood, Saccharum spontaneum L. (Kahi kana) and Vetiveria zizanoides L. Nash (Panny) used in paper industry.


Small mangoose, Indian palm squirrel, common field mouse, hare, jackal, langur and bengal fox are found in the district. Patridges (back & grey), pigeons (bengal green and blue rock), doves (Indian ring, red turtle, little brown and spotted), house sparrow and crow are found in the fields and the jungle areas of the district.

There is separate wildlife staff posted in the district, which provides protection to the wildlife in the fields and jungle areas. The Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 has been enforced in the State w.e.f. 1 April 1975, which affords protection to the wild animals and birds. The public is also being educated by way of various publicity medias like meetings, conferences, lectures, appeals, distribution of wildlife literature amongst masses, etc.

There are three wildlife sancturies in the district, viz. Bir Moti Bagh Patiala, Bir Bhuner Heri and Gurdialpura.

The different zoological types found in the district are detailed below:

(1)       Pisces (Fishes).—There are about 55 species of fishes in the district. The important food fishes from fisheries point of view are labeo rohits, labeo calbasu, labeo bata, Cirrhinus mirigala, Cirrhinus reba, Catla catla, Wallago attu, Aorichthys seenghala, Bagarius yarrelli, etc. The exotic species like Hypohtha imichthys moltrix, Silver carp, Cyprinus carpic var, specularis, the Mirror carp have been introduced in the district for their culture.

(2)       Amphibians (Frogs and Toads).—The common frogs toakes, tortises and toads of the area are ana tigerina {lndian bull frog }. Rana cyanoplyctos {skipping frog }, Rana Limnocharis {paddy –field frog } and  two spacks of toads, viz. Bufo melanostictus and Bufo stomaticus (Common Indian toad).

(3) Reptiles —The reptilian fauna of the district comprises snakes, tortoises and lizards. The poisonous snakes in the district are Bungarus caeruleus (common Krait) or Karayat and Naga naga naga, spectacled Indian Cobra or Naag. The venom of both these snakes is deadly poisonous. The non-poisonous snakes like Eryx johni sand be a or (do mu-sanp) and Typhilina porrectus, (Blind snake or anadha-sanp) are common in the area. The blind snake is small and worm-like with dark coloured body.

The only species of tortoise found in the district is Geoclemys hamiltoni (common Kachua). Its shell is dark coloured marked with yellow spots.

            The common lizards found in the district are Catotes versicolor, (Blood sucker or girgit) and Hemidactylus Flaviviridis, (House lizard or Chiipkli). The girgit mostly inhabits the gardens and around bushes. Its male changes to red during breeding season.

(4) Mammals —The mammals founds in the district are; Pteropus gigantaus (Indian Flying Fox); Scotophilds healthi (Greater Yellow Bat); Macaca mulatta (Rhesus macaqus); Presbytis entellus (Langur); Canus aureus (Asiatic Jackal); Vuipes bengalonsis (Bengal Fox); Herpostes auropunctatus (Small Indian Mangoose); Funambuisus pennanti Wroughten (Indian Palm Squirrel); Apodemus sylvatius (Common Fielf Mouse); Lepus migricollis (Indian Hare).

Birds —A list of birds found in the Patiala District is as under :

Order : Podicipediformes

Family : Podicipediformes

1          Podiceps ruficollis capensis      Salvadori Dabchick

Order : Podicipediformes

Family : Phalacrocoracidao

2                    Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis ( Shaw )

Large Cormorant

3                    Phalacrocorax niger ( Viellot )

Little Cormorant

Order : Ciconiiformes

Family :  Ardeidae

4          Ardeola grayii grayii ( Sykes )

Indian pond Heron

5          Bubulcus ibis coromandus ( Boddaert )

Cattle Egret

6          Egretta intermedia intermedia ( Wagler )

Medium Egret

7        Egretta garzetta  garzetta ( Linnaeus ) Little Egret

Family             :           Cinconiidae

8        Ibis leucocephalus ( Pennant )

Painted stork

9        Ciconia ciconia ciconia (  Linnaeus )

White stock

 Family: Threskiornithidae 

10        Threskiornis melanocephal   

White lbis 

11        Pseudibis papillosa papillosa   (Temminck)

Order: Anseriformes

Family: Anatidae 

12       Tadorna ferruginea  (Pallas )

Brahminy duck

13       Anas acuta Linnaeus


14       Anas crecca  crecca Linnaeus

Common Teal

15       Anas poecilorhyncha poecilorhiyncha Forster

Spotbill Duck

16        Anas platyrhynchos Linnaeus


17     Anas penelop ( Linnaeus )


18     Aythya Ferina ( Linnaeus )

Common Pochard

19     Nettapus coromandelianus coromandelianus (Gmelin)

 Cotton Teal

 Order: Falconiformes

 Family: Accipitridae

20     Elanus Caerulsus Vociferus  (Latham )

Blackwinged Kite

21     Milvus migrans govinda (sykes )

Paraih Kite

22     Haliastur indus indus ( Bodddaert)

Brahminy Kite

23     Accipiter badius dussumieri (Temminck)

Indian  Shikra

24     Aquila repax vindhiana (Franklin)

Tawny Eagle

25     Gyps fulvus fulvescens (Hume)

Indian Griffon Vulture

26     Gyps bengalensis (Gmelin)

Indian Whitebacked Vulture

27     Neophron percnopterus percnopterus (Linnaeus)

Egyptial Vulture

Family : Falconidae

28     Falco tinnunculus tinnunculus Linnaeou


Order : Galliformes

Family : Bhasianidae

29     Francolinus Francolinus asiae Bonaparte

Indian Black Partidge

30     Francolinus pondicerianus interpositus Hartert

Grey Partridge

31     Perdicula asiatica Punjaubi Whistler

Jungle Bush Quail

32     Pavo cristatus Linnaeus

Indian Peafowl

Order : Gruiformes

Family : Gruidae

33     Grus grus lilfordi Sharpe

Common Crane

Family : Raillidae

34     Amaurornis phoenicurus chinensis (Boddaert)

Whitebreasted Waterhen

35     Gallinula chloropus indice Blyth


36     Fulica atra atra linnaeus


Order : Charadriiformes

Family : Charadriidae

37     Vanellus vanellus (Linnaeus)

Green Plover

38     Vanellus indicus indicus (Boddaert)

Redwattled Lapwing

39     Charadrias dudius Scopoli

Little Ringed Plover

40     Iringa erythropus (Pallas)

Spotted Redshank

41        Iringa nebularia (Gunnenes)

Green Shank

42        Iringa totanus eurhinus (Oberholser)        

Eastern Redshank

43 Iringa glareola Linnaeus

Spotted Sandpiper

44 Iringa hypoleucos Linnaeus

Common Sandpiper

44     Calidris minutus (Leisler)

Little S tint

46        Himantopus himantopus himantopus (Linnaeus)

Indian Blackwinged stilt

Family : Burhinidae

47        Burhinus dedicnemus (Linnaeus)

Stone Curlew

Family : Laridae

48                Sterna aurantia J.E. Crey

Indian RiverTerm

49                Sterna acuticauda J.E. Grey

Blackbellied Tern

Order : Columbiformes

Family : Columbidae

50                Ireron phoenicopters phoenicopters (Latham)

Bengal Green Pigeon

51                Columba livia Gmelin

Blue Rock Pigeon

52                Streptopelia decaocto (Frivaldsxky)

Indian Ring Dove

53                Streptopelia tranquebarica (Hermann)

Red Turtle Dove

54                Streptopelia chinensis (Scopoli)

Spotted Dove

55        Streptopelia senegalensis (Linnaeus)

Little Brown Dove

Order : Psittaciformes

Family : Psittacidae

56     Psiiacula eupatria (Linnaeus)

Large Indian Parakeet

57     Psittacuia krameri (Scopoli)

Rosaringed Parakeet

Order : Cuculiformes

Family : Cuculidae

58        Clamator Jacobinus (Boddaert)

Pied Crested Cuckoo

59        Cuculus varius vahl

Brainfever Bird

60        Cuculus micropterus Gould

Indian Cuckoo

61                Eudynamys scolopacea


62                Taccocua leschenautii Lesson

Sirkeer Cuckoo

63                Centropus sincnsis (Stephens)


Order : Strongiformes

Family : Srigidae

64 Bubo bubo bengalensis (Franklin)

Great Horned Owl

65     Athene brama (Temminck)

Spotted Owlet

Order : Caprimulgiformes

Family : Caprimulgidae

66     Caprimulgus asiaticus Latham

Indian NightjAR

Order : Apodiformes

Family : Apodidae

67 Apus affinis affinis (J.E. Grey)

            Indian House swift

            Order : Coraciiformes

            Family: Alcedinidae

67     Ceryle liugubris (Temminick)

Pied Kingfisher



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