The district forms a part of the basin lying between the Rajmahal hills on the east. Created on 1st April 1992 by the division of the erstwhile West Dinajpur district, it comprises of two subdivisions, Raiganj and Islampur. Raiganj on the bank of the river Kulik is the district headquarter, where the Raiganj Wildlife Sanctuary, the second largest bird sanctuary in Asia is situated. The headquarters of the Uttar Dinajpur district, Raiganj is a municipal town since 1951 and is one of the major trade centres of the North Bengal. The place is well-connected with the rest of the state through National Highways, State Highways and railways. NH-31 and NH-34 pass through the heart of the district.