The name of the place, Dhamtari is abbreviated from “Dhamma”+”Tarai”. Earlier, Dhamtari was a part of Raipur district in Madhya Pradesh. Dhamtari district is officially created as new district on 6th July 1998 dividing the Raipur district currently the capital of Chhattisgarh along with Mahasamund. It became a part of the new born Chhattisgarh state in the year 2000. Now, it has become a trade centre because of main Bombay-Calcutta line. The American Mennonite Mission was established in Dhamtari in 1899. The district has world’s largest population of Marathas namely Marathapara. This area it is named as Kankannadi, Chitrotpala, Neelotpala, Mandvahini, Jairath after the river Mahanadi.
Geographically, the district encompasses a total area of total 4,084 sq km. and occupies the ranks 17th in State and 299th in India on the bases of this size. In the year 2021, there was total 45.54% forest area of total geographical area. It lies at 20°71' N latitude, 81°55' E longitude and 305 m altitude. It is bounded by the Raipur District to the North, the Kanker and Bastar Districts to the South, the State of Orissa to the East and the Durg and Kankar Districts to the West. The principal river of this district is Mahanadi and it is so far named as Kankannadi, Chitrotpala, Neelotpala, Mandvahini, Jairath etc. Its tributaries are namely Sendur, Pairy, Sondur, Joan, Kharun and Shivnath. The presence of these rivers in the district has made its land very fertile. It has tropical climate. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 1178.9 mm in the year of 2021-22.
Administration wise, the district is divided into 4 sub-districts, 6 towns and 649 villages. Hindi is its official language. The district of Dhamtari came into existence on the 6th July, 1998. Its district headquarters is located at Dhamtari town, situated at a distance of 65 km. from the state capital.
Demographically, according to the 2011 census, the district has a total number of 1,68,278 households with a total of 7,99,781 comprising 3,97,897 are males and 4,01,884 are females. The density of population of the district is 196 (persons per sq km). The sex ratio is pegged at 1010 (females per 1000 males) while the child ratio stands at 973 (females per 1000 males). As per 2011 census the percentage of major religion practiced by the people of this region is Hindu with 97.18% of the total population. The population growth rate during the period 2001-2011 was 13.19% including 12.87% were males and 13.51% were females. According to the 2011 census, the percentage of the principal language of the region is Hindi at 98.12%. In the year 2020 the number of live births in the district was 16,350 out of which 8,330 were males and 8,020 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 6,429 out of which 3,784 were males and 2,645 were females.
Economically, the district is dependent on the agriculture and timber industry primarily. A large number of people are involved in rice or flour mills also. Chemical industry is also has a good existence. The Ravishankar Sagar Dam, Gangrel Dam, Sondur Dam, Dudhawa Dam, Madamsilli Dam are the prime source of irrigation in the district. The region is rich in lead deposits. There are two hydro-power plants of 10 MW and 1.2 MW. The GDDP or Gross District Domestic Product during the period 2006-07 was Rs 1,94,579 lakh at Current Price and Rs 1,39,209 lakh at Constant Prices during the period 1999-2000. The NDDP, or Net District Domestic Product during the period 2006-07 was Rs 1,74,466 lakh at Current Price and Rs 1,24,397 lakh at Constant Prices during the period 1999-2000. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, at factor cost during the period 2006-07 was Rs 21,961 lakh at Current Price and Rs 7,944 lakh at Constant Prices during the period 1999-2000.
Education wise, according to the 2011 census, the literacy rate in the district is 78.36% including 87.78% are males and 69.08% are females. The total number of literates in the district is 5,46,833 comprising 3,03,924 are males and 2,42,909 are females. The district has numerous educational institutes including schools and colleges such as Nutan Higher Secondary School, Govt. Boys Higher Secondary School, Govt. Girls Higher Secondary School, Hari Ohm Higher Secondary School, Saraswati Shishu Mandir Higher Secondary School, Mennonite Senior Secondary School, Model English School, Delhi Public School, St. Xaviers School, Vidya Kunj, Kendriya Vidyalaya, Saraswati Shishu Vidya Mandir, Vandematarm College Ganesh Chowk Dhamtari, Comp-Tech Degree College, Govt. P.G. College, Govt. Polytechnic College, Govt. Girls College, Genesis College, etc.
Ajay Chandrakar is a famous politician from the district. He is a member of the Bharatiya Janata Party. He is serving as a member of a cabinet minister in the government of Chhattisgarh state of India. He is also the Panchayat and Rural Development, Culture, Tourism and Parliamentary Affairs Minister of Chhattisgarh State. He has contributed to the education immensely with the establishment of the SIRD, NIT, open school, Business Education Division, regional science center, a military school in Ambikapur and commissioning of IIM correspondence for AIEEE.
The district has several historical and religious tourist places to visit. These places are Gangrel Dam, Sitanadi Wildlife Sanctuary, Sondur Dam, Dudhawa Dam, Madamsilli Dam. In the year 2018, there were 16,19,000 domestic tourists who visited the above places. Gangrel Dam (R.S. Sagar Dam) is the longest dam, built across the Mahanadi River. This dam supplies water for irrigation and power. Sitanadi Wildlife Sanctuary was established in 1974 under Wildlife Protection Act of 1972. It is named after Sitanadi River. It is rich of lush green flora and fauna. The Murrum Silli Dam or Madam Silli or Mordem Silli is situated on the Sillari River which is a tributary of the Mahanadi River. It was built between 1914 and 1923, the first dam in Asia having Siphon Spillways. It is an earth-fill embankment dam.