Information About Maharashtra - History Geography Culture Food

History of Maharashtra
Maharashtra was once ruled by Rashtrakuta dynasty, Satavahana dynasty, Mughals, Western Chalukyas and Marathas. Western Maharashtra was governed by the British as part of the Bombay Presidency. Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Vinayak Damodar Savarkar led the struggle for Indian Independence from this area. Under the States Reorganization Act in 1956, Maharashtra was formed predominantly by Marathi speaking people. After many mass protests, Gujarat was carved out from Maharashtra on 1st May 1960. Even today state has dispute with Karnataka regarding Belgaum and Karwar regions.

Geography of Maharashtra
Maharashtra is located on the north eastern part of India. It is surrounded by Gujarat, Telangana, Goa, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and the Union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli. Arabian Sea is bordered on the west of the state. It has an average elevation of 1200 meters from the sea level and spread in 307713 sq kms making it the third largest state in the country. State has a coastline of about 720 kms.

Government and Administration of Maharashtra
For administration purpose Maharashtra is divided into six divisions and 36 districts, 109 sub-divisions and 357 talukas. Bombay High Court takes Jurisdiction responsibility of Maharashtra, Goa, and the Union Territories of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu. Indian National Congress, Bharatiya Janata Party, the Shiv Sena and NCP are the major political parties in the state. Maharashtra legislative assembly consists of 288 seats. Maharashtra contributes 48 members to the Indian Assembly in which three and four are reserved for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes respectively.

Language and Culture of Maharashtra
Bidriware, Mashru & Himroo, Narayan Peth, Kolhapur Jewelry, Paithani Sarees and Warli Painting are some of the important crafts in the state. Kolhapuri chappals, hand-made leather chappals, are popular in this region. Dhangari Gaja Lavani Dance are the famous dance forms of the state. Povadas dance is performed to explain Shri Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj life events. Bharud, Gondhal, Bhajan, Kirtan and Tumbadi are some of the famous folk music of Maharashtra. Varadi and Konkan are the two branches of Marathi cuisine. Konkani cuisine uses more of coconut and spices. Marathi is widely spoken followed by Hindi, English Gujarati, Konkani, Urdu and South Indian languages. Ahirani, Malvani, Warli, Kankon and Dangi are some of the dialects of this region.

Education Status of Maharashtra
Maharashtra houses 24 universities. University of Mumbai is the largest university in the world. The Shreemati Nathibai Damodar Thackersey Women's University, started in 1916 is the oldest women's liberal arts college in South Asia. College of Engineering Pune is the third oldest college in Asia was started in 1854. In all the prominent national rankings, at least 5 to 7 Maharashtra colleges and universities will be among the top 20 in India. Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Technological University, Institute of Chemical Technology, National Defence Academy, Armed Forces Medical College etc are some of the prominent colleges in the state.

Economy of Maharashtra
Mumbai is the financial capital of India and Maharashtra is pioneer in small scale industries. Maharashtra has the largest proportion of taxpayers in the country and its share markets transact almost 70 per cent of the country's stocks. GSDP of the state was 11995.48 billion in 2011-12 which contributed 14.4% of GDP. 25% of the country's industrial output is from Maharashtra. Agriculture and allied industries are playing an important role in the Maharashtra’s economy.

Tourism in Maharashtra
The Deccan tableland and the Konkan coastal strip are two important landforms which are offering a multiple scope for sightseeing in the territory. Maharashtra has a history which has taken bath in blood in many scary battles. Maharashtra offers everything from beaches, hill stations, wildlife sanctuaries, natural caves, waterfalls, forts, pilgrimage shrines, museums, and historical monuments. Maharashtra Tourism is focusing on various innovative like Bollywood tourism, Wine tourism, Agro Tourism, Eco Tourism, Wildlife tourism and special entertainment zone.

Festivals Celebrated in Maharashtra
Ganesh Chaturthi is the major festival celebrated across the state. On Nag Panchami, snake is worshipped. People offer milk and sweets to the snakes. Narali Pournima is celebrated by offering coconuts to the sea-god on the full moon day of the Shravan month. It is marked as the new fishing season. Gudhi Padwa is the New Year and it is celebrated on the Hindu New Year day. The Elephanta Festival is celebrated in the month of February on a small island, Elephanta. Ellora festival is celebrated in December to showcase local talent. Apart from these all the major festivals in India are celebrated.

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