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Madhya Pradesh
Info | Cities | Historical | Pilgrimage | Hilstations | Adventure | Wildlife

Area : 443,446 sq. kms.
Population : 65,380,000
Languages : Hindi
Capital : Bhopal
Accessibility : Talk in general about major airports ,major roads, rail heads etc.

The large state of Madhya Pradesh is the geographical heartland of India. Most of the state is a high plateau and in summer it can be very hot and dry. Virtually all phases of Indian history have left their mark on Madhya Pradesh, historically known as Malwa. There are still many pre-Aryan Gond and Bhil tribal people in the state, but Madhya Pradesh is overwhelmingly Indo-Aryan with majority of the people speaking in Hindi and following Hinduism.

Two of the major attractions of this state are remote and isolated:

Khajuraho in the north of the state, is a long way from anywhere and most easily visited when travelling between Agra and Varanasi; Jabalpur with its marble rocks is the centre of the state.

Most of the state's other attractions are on or near the main Delhi to Bombay railway line. From Agra, just outside the state to the north, you can head south through Gwalior (with its magnificient fort), Sanchi, Bhopal, Ujjain, Indore and Mandu. From there you can head west to Gujarat or to the Ajanta and Ellora caves in Maharashtra.

Hindi is the main language of Madhya Pradesh. It is also the official language. Major dialects of Hindi used in the state are Bundelkhandi, Malwi & Chattisgari. Other languages spoken are Urdu, Marathi, Sindhi, Punjabi,Gujrati etc. Among the eminent artists/poets produced by the state are Shri Makhan Lal Chaturvedi, Ustad Allauddin Khan, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, Hari Shankar Parsai, Sharad Joshi, Gajanan Madhav Mukti Bodh and Vinod Kumar Shukla.

Madhya Pradesh as its name implies, lies in the heart of India. It covers an area of 4,43,406 sq. km, making it the biggest state in the country, bordering seven other states - Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan. Madhya Pradesh consists largely of a plateau streaked with the hill ranges of the Vindhyas and the Satpuras with the Chhattisgarh plains to the east. The hills give rise to the main river systems - the Narmada and the Tapti, running from east to west, and the Chambal, Sone, Betwa, Mahanadi, and the Indravati west to east. Intersected by these meandering rivers and dotted with hills and lakes, the state has a varied natural setting of great beauty. Madhya Pradesh, as the Modern state, came into being in 1956, its cultural heritage is ancient and chequered.

Innumerable monuments, exquisitely carved temples, stupas, forts and palaces on hilltops, raise in the visitor's mind visions of empires and kingdoms, of great warriors and builders, poets and musicians, saints and philosophers; of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Islam.. India's immortal poet-dramatist Kalidasa and the great musician of the Mughal court, Tansen, were from these parts. One third of the state is forested and offers a unique and exciting panorama of wildlife. In the national parks of Kanha, Bandhavgarh, Shivpuri and many others one has the rare opportunity to see the tiger, as such, Madhya Pradesh is often referred to as the Tiger state of India. A wide variety of deer, antelope and bison are also the attractions of these parks.

Customs and beliefs in each area have added colour to the fairs and festivals. Dussehra in Bastar; Shivratri in Khajuraho, Bhojpur, Pachmarhi and Ujjain; Ramnaumi in Chitrakoot and Orchha, Bhagoriya in Jhabua and the annual festival of dances at Khajuraho are events for the tourists to remember. The Malwa Festival in Indore, Mandu and Ujjain, and the Pachmarhi Festival bring alive the rich folk and tribal culture of the state in colourful celebrations.

Thus, Madhya Pradesh represents a true spirit of Northern India in its colorful life.

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