Uttar Pradesh

Posted: 07.10.2011
Updated on: 14.01.2012

Alias

उत्तर प्रदेश

Uttar Pradesh, India


View Larger Map

U.P.
Hindi: उत्तर प्रदेश
"Northern Province", (formerly: United Provinces; Hindi: यूनाईटेड प्रोविन्सेस,)

is a state located in the northern part of India. With a population of over 200 million people, it is India's most populous state, as well as the world's most populous sub-national entity. Were it a nation in its own right, Uttar Pradesh would be the world's fifth most populous country ahead of Brazil, a country thirty-five times larger in territorial area. Uttar Pradesh is the second largest state-economy in India contributing 8.34% to India's total GDP in the financial year 2010.

With an area of 93,933 sq mi (243,290 km2), Uttar Pradesh covers a large part of the highly fertile and densely populated upper Gangetic plain. It shares an international border with Nepal to the north along with the Indian state of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh to the north-west, Haryana, Delhi and Rajasthan on the west, Madhya Pradesh on the south, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand on the south east and Bihar on the east. The administrative and legislative capital of Uttar Pradesh is Lucknow and the industrial capital is Kanpur. The state's high court is based at Allahabad with a bench in state capital Lucknow. It is home to many historical cities, including Allahabad, Varanasi, Kanpur, Lucknow, Agra, Meerut, and Gorakhpur. Kanpur is its largest city; other big cities are Lucknow, Varanasi, Allahabad, Gorakhpur, Meerut, Agra, Aligarh, Bareilly, Ghaziabad and Noida.

Uttar Pradesh has an very vital place in the culture of India; it is the birthplace of Hinduism and admirer of its derived Vedic, Jainism, Buddhism and Sikhism beliefs, UP has been the ancient seat of Hindu religion, learning and culture, and has many important sites of Hindu pilgrimage. The State also has several sites important to Buddhism: the Chaukhandi Stupa marks the spot where Buddha met his first disciples, while the Dhamek Stupa in Sarnath commemorates Buddha's first sermon. Also the town of Kushinagar is where Gautama Buddha died.

Throughout its history, the region of Uttar Pradesh was sometimes divided between smaller kingdoms and at other times formed an important part of larger empires that arose on its east or west, including the Magadha, Nanda, Mauryan, Sunga, Kushan, Gupta, Gurjara, Rashtrakuta, Pala and Mughal empires.

The Indo-Gangetic plain, that spans most of the state, is also the birth place of the Indo-Islamic syncretic culture of the medieval period. It holds much of the heritage of the Mughal Empire, including the world famous mausoleum Taj Mahal built by Shah Jehan, the magnificent tomb of Mughal Emperor Akbar the Great in Agra and Akbar's capital-palace in Fatehpur Sikri. It was a centre of nationalism during the British colonial period and has continued to play a prominent role in Indian political and cultural movements. The state has a rich heritage of traditional crafts and cottage industries of various types that employ highly skilled craftsmen and artisans.

Hindus constitute 80% and its derived Sikhs, Jains and Buddhists constitute 1.5% of the population in the state. Islam is practised by about 18% of the population while the remaining 1.5% Christians and also the tribal population.

Locator map

References

Share this page on: