Uttar Pradesh Overview

Uttar Pradesh is the 5th largest and the most populous state of India, and it plays an important role in the economy and politics of the country. At the same time, Uttar Pradesh can also be referred as the cultural centre of India. Spread across a land area of 2,38,566 sq km, Uttar Pradesh has an approximate population of 186 million. The geography of Uttar Pradesh is characterized by three distinct hypsographical regions, which are the Himalyan region in the north, the Gangetic Plain in the centre and Vindhya hills and plateau to the south of the state.

The climate of Uttar Pradesh can be broadly termed as sub-tropical monsoon, but there are wide variations in climate within the state.

Uttar Pradesh is the largest food producer of India and the business and economy of Uttar Pradesh is largely dependent upon agriculture. However, despite its agricultural dependency, Uttar Pradesh has also experienced rapid industrialization in the recent past. Carpet weaving, electronics, glass manufacturing, handlooms, leather products, and sugar are the important industries of the state. The tourism of Uttar Pradesh, with its rich repertoire of history, architecture, fairs and festivals, has awesome potential and it is one of the important aspects of the economy of the state.

The culture of Uttar Pradesh is rich and vibrant and is a product of its historical legacy. The history of Uttar Pradesh is very old and during the course of millennia, the region had been subjected to diverse cultural influences, which in turn have shaped the pluralistic cultural cosmos of the state. It is reflected in the state's arts, handicrafts, dances, literature and cuisines, which have evolved over the course of centuries through diverse influences. The handicrafts of Uttar Pradesh bear an exquisite tradition and are seen in the zardozi embroidery and chikankari handicrafts, earthenware, stone work, intricate jewellery designs among others.

If you prefer to keep the handicrafts of this great state as mementos, the cuisines of Uttar Pradesh would surely linger in your mouth as memories of some truly fine times. From succulent kebabs and delicious biryanis to crisp kachori and sweet malpuas, Uttar Pradesh invites you to a gastronomic trip of sorts which you would love to embark upon. Of course, the best way to end a hearty meal in Uttar Pradesh is with a Benarasi paan. The costumes of Uttar Pradesh are also another manifestation of the state's rich cultural traditions. From the dazzle of ghagra choli to the regal aura of sherwani, Uttar Pradesh dresses itself with grace and élan.

Kathak is among the most famous dances of Uttar Pradesh, but Hurka Baul, Chholiya and Braj Raslila are more popular among the common people of the state. Hindi and Urdu are the two major languages of Uttar Pradesh, though English is also widely spoken in the corporate circles, and there is presence of other languages like Bengali and Marathi in the state.

The politics of Uttar Pradesh is presently dominated by BSP or the Bahujan Samaj Party, which has secured an absolute majority in the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections of 2007, but SP, BJP and Congress have their respective political niches or vote banks in the state. Like anywhere in the rest of the country, cricket is the most popular sports of Uttar Pradesh, although hockey, football and badminton are also being played in the state with enthusiasm.

Last Updated On: 2011/07/20

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