Begusarai is a city as well as a municipal council located in Begusarai district existing in the state of Bihar, India. The city is situated at 25.42°N 86.13°E and has got an average elevation of 41 metres (134 feet). It is spread across an area of 1879 square km and consists of Asia's largest oxbow lake, which is known as Kabar Taal containing some of rare and endangered birds located near Manjhaul village.
Begusarai derives its name from "Begum" (queen)+ "Sarai" (inn). This is because of the fact that "Begum" of Bhagalpur used to visit the "Simaria Ghat" (holy place at Ganges bank) for a month of pilgrimage that later got transformed into the slang form of Begusarai.
Begusarai is a district- city administrative headquarters on the northern bank of river Ganga. Agriculture is the main occupation here with nearly ninety percent of people depending upon agriculture. The main cash crops are jute, potato, red chilies, oilseeds, tobacco, tomato and andi.
Despite being a milk procuring region, Begusarai is renowned for rearing some of the largest hybrid cows. A huge quantity of milk is sold to the Barauni Milk Composite Dairy Industry which gives lucrative income and employment to the locals of this place.
Begusarai is referred to as the Industrial capital of Bihar and is also known as second capital of Bihar. The city has potential for agro- based industries because of large production of maize and oilseeds, etc. There are several Ancillary Industries located here. The three principal industries are Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL), Barauni Thermal Power Station (BTPS) and Hindustan Fertilizer Corporation Limited (HFCL).
It was at one point of time renowned for its cultural events. Begusarai unit of the Indian People's Theatres Association (IPTA) has been popular for its active involvement. However, it has now lost its status apparently due to the lack of any movement in the district. It was due to the Communist movement spearheaded by CPI in the district that the IPTA district unit was proactive. Dr. Piyush Gupta - a celebrity physician was the chief architect behind the cultural activities. After Dr Gupta left Begusarai for Patna, the cultural movement began dying down.