It is believed that the name "Bhilai" is derived from the Bhil tribe which originally inhabited this region and continues to dwell in the nearby forests till date.
In the 2011 census, Durg-Bhilai Nagar Urban Agglomeration had a population of 1,064,077.
Bhilai is home to the Bhilai Steel Plant, the first Indian plant to produce steel rails, which was established with help from the Soviet Union in 1955. The facility underwent modernization and expansion, and was re-opened by Prime MinisterNarendra Modi on June 14, 2018.
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