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Rourkela (The Steel City)

Rourkela City
Rourkela is  one of the beautiful and the fourth largest city of Odisha after Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and Berhampur is situated about 340 kilometres north of state capital Bhubaneswar. The city is surrounded by a range of hills and encircled by rivers. The name "Rourkela" means "Our Village" in the local dialect of Sadri language spoken by the tribals here.  

Rourkela is one of the oldest cities of Odisha that has a vast culture and natural heritage. In the year 1931 Rourkela was declared as the urban town. It is located in Sundergarh district of Odisha. The area of Rourkela is 200 square kilometres approximately. The area near Rourkela is rich in iron-ore hence a steel plant is situated in Rourkela. Rourkela is situated in a hilly region. Thirty six percent of the geographical area of the district has semi-evergreen or tropical dry deciduous forest. The Koel and Sankha rivers meet at Vedvyas, Rourkela and flow as a single river called Brahmani.

Rourkela experiences tropical climate. The summer season (March to June) gets very hot with the average maximum temperature going slightly above 45° Celsius. It receives high rainfall during Southwest monsoon (July to September) and retreating Northeast monsoon (December – January). Average annual rainfall ranges between 160 and 200 cm. The minimum and maximum temperatures are in the range of 11 Celsius to 44 C with a mean minimum and maximum temperature range of 14.3 Celsius to 39.2 Celsius during coldest and hottest months.

The steel city is divided mainly into two sections Old Rourkela and the much larger Steel township. The Steel Township and Fertilizer Township are under the Steel Plant Administration while the other sections of the city are under the Rourkela Municipal Corporation. According to the census report of 2011 the population of Rourkela Industrial Township is 273217 and Rourkela Town is 279753 and the urban metropolitan area is 650000.  Rourkela has an average literacy rate of 75%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 81%, and female literacy is 69%. People from all over the country can be found working here though, Odiyas are still a majority.  It is one of the reasons why Hindi is a very popular language in Rourkela even though Odiya is a local language. Rourkela is the educational, technical and medical research hub of Western Odisha. It houses many English medium schools which provide CBSE and ICSE certificates to their students. It also has one of the National Institutes of Technology (NIT Rourkela) of the country. Rourkela Government Hospital (RGH) a district level hospital with consultancy facilities in several fields. The IGH is a modern and well equipped hospital with number of specialty health care facilities by experienced and specialised Doctors on various fields. Rourkela is the industrial capital of Odisha.  It has industries of all sizes. The city is known internationally for iron & steel trades. One of the largest steel plants of the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) is situated here. The city is popularly known as the engineering heartland of India. The city has a beautiful park, a small zoo, a lake, aquarium, deer park and an industrial museum. The Asia's highest Hanuuman statue, about 22 m high stands within a temple complex at Hanuman Vatika. Rourkela has an International hockey stadium with synthetic astroturf. Rourkela celebrates almost all festivals. The most awaited festival is Durga Puja and the major festivals are Nua Khai, Ganesh Puja, Kali Puja & Biswakarma Puja.

As Rourkela is the industrial capital of Odisha, it has a developed transportation network. It is situated on the Kolkata-Mumbai South Eastern railway line which is a major route connecting the two metros of India. Rourkela is directly connected to Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Cuttack, Delhi, Bilaspur, Mumbai, Nagpur, Pune, Puri, Patna, Kolkata, Raipur, Ranchi, Sambalpur, Vishakhapatnam and many more cities of India. Rourkela is connected to various towns of the state by State Highway 10 and National Highway 23. National Highway 23 connects it to the nearby city of Ranchi which is the capital of Jharkhand state. Also the city has is a small airport. Some airlines companies are providing their service to connect Rourkela with other parts of Odisha. 

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