The district is as ancient as Puranas. Moreover, it is believe that the district has got its name from the goddess Bhadrakali. Once upon a time there was a king named Mukunda Dev, the last ruler of this region. Around the year 1575, Muslims came to the place, settled here and ruled over it for a long period of time. During the rule of Mughals, the place of Bhadrak came out as a Subha under the Nawabs of Bengal. After the majestic Mughals diminished from the political scenario of the Bhadrak, the region was ruled by the kings of different dynasties but finally British came here and controlled the area until India got its independence. Since independence till today, the Bhadrak district is gradually progressing in almost all the socio-economic sectors such as education, industry, agriculture, trade and commerce. Earlier, it was a part of the Balasore district but at last in the year 1993, it was emerged as a separate district in the map of Odisha state.
Dr. Gourahari Das, a story writer, novelist, and columnist who won several prestigious awards such as Orissa Sahitya Academy Award in 2001, Bhubaneswar Pustakmela Puraskar in 1999 and many more. He has written a number of short stories, novels, drama, etc.
Geographically, the district has a total 2,505 sq. km. area and occupies the rank 27th in State and 447th in India on the bases of this size. It lies at 21°06'N latitude, 86°50'E longitude and 13 m altitude. In the year 2021, there was a total 3.11% forest area of total geographical area. Some principal rivers of the district passes through it are Salandi, Baitarani, Kansabansa, Gamol, Mantei, Genguti, Kochila, Reba and Kapali. It is bounded by Balasore District in the North, Kendrapara District in the South, Jajpur District and Kendujhar District in the East and Bay of Bengal in the West. The climate of the district is extremely hot in the summers and fairly cold in the winters. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 1639.6 mm in the year of 2021-22.
Administrative wise, the district is divided into 12 sub-districts, 04 towns and 1,312 villages. Oriya is its administrative language. The district has its headquarters located at Bhadrak town situated at the distance of 128 kms. from the State Capital.
Demographically, according to the 2011 census, the district has a total number of 3,09,527 households with a total of 15,06,337 comprising 7,60,260 are males, and 7,46,077 are females which leads it to rank 12th in the state and 333rd in India. The density of population of the district is 601 (persons per sq. kms.). The sex ratio is pegged at 981 (females per 1000 males) while the child ratio stands at 942 (females per 1000 males). As per 2011 census the percentage of major religions practiced by the people of this region is Hindu with 92.84%. The population growth rate during the period of 2001-2011 was 12.94% including 12.52% were males and 13.37% were females. According to 2011 census the principal language in the district is Oriya with 90.56%. In the year 2020 the number of live births in the district was 24,180 out of which 12,693 were males and 11,487 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 9,873 out of which 5,759 were males and 4,114 were females.
Economically, the district is dependent on agriculture primarily. In the year 2011-12 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 4,97,615 lakhs at current price and Rs. 3,08,677 lakhs at constant prices in the year 2004-2005. The net domestic product in the district during the period 2011-12 was Rs. 4,50,865 lakh at current price and Rs. 2,76,094 lakh at constant prices in the year 2004-2005. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, At Factor Cost during the period 2011-12 was Rs. 29,745 at current price and Rs. 18,215 at constant prices in the year 2004-2005. The largest manufacturers of quality Ferro chrome in the country, FACOR and ship building factory are located in the district. Paddy, green gram, black gram, mustard, sunflower, groundnut, mango, guava, banana, citrus, papaya, lady finger, pumpkin and potato are the main agricultural products of the district. Dhamara, a mega port is situated here.
Education wise, according to the 2011 census, the percentage of literate persons is 82.78% including 89.64% are males and 75.83% are females. The total literate population of the district is 10,94,140 out of which 5,96,269 are males and 4,97,871 are females. Subhadra Mahatap College, Atal Behari College, Dhamanagar College, Bhadrak Engineering School and Technology, Agarapara College, Bant Anchalika College, Bhadrak Institute of Engineering and Technology, Bhadrak Morning College, Bhadrak Women’s College, Chandibali College, Chorampa College, Hi-Tech Institute of Engineering and Management, Naami College, Trupti Women’s College, etc. are located in the district.
Bhartruhari Mahtab is a member of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) political party. He represented Cuttack constituency in the Lok Sabha in 1998, 1999, 2004, 2009 and 2014. Mahamegha Bahan Aira Kharbela Swain is the representative of the Balasore constituency in the 14th Lok Sabha of India. He belongs to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) political party. He founded the new political party Utkal Bharat.
The district has many historical and religious places to visit. These places are Akhandalmani Temple, Dhamra Port, Biranchnarayan Temple, Biranchnarayan Temple, Maa Bhadrakali, Raktatirtha Eram. In the year of 2019, there were total 20,42,429 domestic tourists and 583 foreign tourists. Goddess Dhamrai is the temple dedicated to the Goddess Dhamrai. Bhadrakali Temple has the statue of Goddess in black granite.