About Rajasthan - History Geography Culture Festivals Food

History of Rajasthan
Some parts of present day Rajasthan were part of the Indus Valley Civilization. Rajasthan’s history is 5000 years old and it is related to Lord Rama. Mauryan, Rajput, Parmars, Chalukyas, and Chauhans are some of the important rulers of this region. Rajputs were divided into 36 royal clans and 21 dynasties. Akbar ruled the major regions of the state like Nagaur, Ajmer and Ranthanbhor. Rajasthan was formed on 30 March 1949 when it was merged into the Dominion of India.

Geography of Rajasthan
Rajasthan is located on the northern side of the country. It is surrounded by Punjab, Haryana Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat. It also shares international border with Pakistan which is 1070 kms. It is spread in 324239 sq kms, making it the largest state in the country. It is contributing 11% of India’s area. Rajasthan houses Thar Desert which is known as "Great Indian Desert". The Aravali Range divides the state into two geographical zones

Government and Administration of Rajasthan
For administration purpose Rajasthan is divided into seven divisions and 33 districts. Major political parties in Rajasthan are the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Indian National Congress. Rajasthan legislative assembly consists of 200 seats. Rajasthan contributes 25 members to the Indian Assembly in which four and three are reserved for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes respectively.

Language and Culture of Rajasthan
Rajasthan has a mix of people belonging to different castes, tribes, and religions, which enhance the culture by their unique customs and beliefs. Kathak, one of the classical dance forms in India, is famous in this area and is widely practiced here. The Ghoomar dance and Kalbeliya dance are the folk dances from the state which have international recognition. Ghair, Kucchi Ghodi, Terahtaali, Fire Dance, Drum Dance etc are some of the folk dances from the state. Folk songs are used to tell the legendary battles of Rajputs. Jewellary, Metalware, Gesso Work, Pottery, Stone Carving and Block Printing are the important crafts in the state. In Rajasthan, cooking food is considered as an art. Hindi is widely spoken in the region. Marwari, Jaipuri, Malvi and Mewati are the main dialects in the state. Bagri, Harauti, Thali, Gade Romany etc are some less known dialects spoken in Rajasthan. English is also widely spoken in the state.

Education Status of Rajasthan
Rajasthan’s literacy rate was 67.06% in 2011. Female literacy rate in Rajasthan is the lowest in the country with 52.66%. Rajasthan has nine universities and more than 250 colleges which include 41 engineering colleges, 23 polytechnic colleges and 152 Industrial Training Institutes. Birla Institute of Technology and Science Pilani, IIT Jodhpur, IIM Udaipur, AIIMS Jodhpur and LNMIIT are some of the premium colleges in the state.

Economy of Rajasthan
Rajasthan's economy mainly depends on agricultural and pastoral. Cotton and tobacco are the Rajasthan's cash crops. Rajasthan is one of the largest producers of edible oils in the country and the second largest producer of oilseeds. Many prominent chemical and engineering companies are located in Kota, a city in southern Rajasthan. Jodhpur sandstone is mostly used in monuments, important buildings and residential buildings. Rajasthan is part of the Mumbai-Delhi Industrial corridor is set to benefit economically. Rajasthan is earning Rs. 150 million per day as revenue from crude oil sector.

Tourism in Rajasthan
Rajasthan is part of the Golden Triangle, which includes the cities of Delhi and Agra. Rajasthan has attracted 14% of foreign tourist in the country. Tourism accounts for eight percent of the Rajasthan's domestic product. The palaces of Jaipur and Ajmer-Pushkar, Udaipur lakes, the desert forts of Jodhpur, Taragarh Fort, and Bikaner and Jaisalmer are the most preferred destinations. Rajasthan is famous for its forts, carved temples, and decorated havelis, which were built in pre-Muslim era.

Festivals Celebrated in Rajasthan
Desert Festival is celebrated in the Golden City of Rajasthan – Jaisalmer for three days in the month of February to exhibit the rich Rajasthani folk culture. Nagaur Fair, Second largest fair of India, is celebrated for eight days in the month of January – February in Nagaur for animal trading and displays thousands of animals. Pushkar fair is one of the largest camel fairs in the world celebrated for five days on the banks of the Pushkar Lake. Mt. Abu celebrates the Summer Festival for three days in the month of June to exhibit the tribal life and culture of Rajasthan. Teej Festival, Mewar Festival, Elephant Festival and Urs Festival are import state festivals. Apart from these all the major festivals in India are celebrated.

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