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Himachal Pradesh

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Himachal PradeshHimachal Pradesh State

Seal

Location of Himachal Pradesh in India

Map of Himachal Pradesh Coordinates (Shimla): 31612N 771020E Country Established Capital Largest city India 25 January 1971 Shimla Shimla

Himachal Pradesh

2Districts Government Governor ChiefMinister Legislature Urmila Singh Prem Kumar Dhumal Unicameral [2] [1] (BJP)

(68 seats)

Parliamentary constituency 4 High Court Area Total Area rank Elevation Population (2011) Total Rank Density Time zone ISO 3166 code HDI HDI rank Literacy Official languages Website 6,856,509 21st unknown operator: u','/km2(/sqmi) IST (UTC+05:30) IN-HP 0.681 (medium) 8th (2005) 83.78% Hindi [3] [4] 55673km2(21495.5sqmi) 17th 2319m (7608ft) Himachal Pradesh High Court

himachal.nic.in

Himachal Pradesh (Hindi: Hindustani pronunciation:[matl prde]( listen)) is a state in Northern India. It is spread over unknown operator: u','unknown operator: u','unknown operator: u',' (unknown operator: u'strong'unknown operator: u','km2),[5] and is bordered by the Indian states of Jammu and Kashmir on the north, Punjab on the west and south-west, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh on the south, Uttarakhand on the south-east and by the Tibet Autonomous Region on the east. The literal meaning of Himachal Pradesh is In the lap of Himalayas.[6] Himachal Pradesh is known to be abundant in natural beauty[7] After the Anglo Gorkha War, the British colonial government came into power.In 1950 Himachal was declared as a union territory but after the State of Himachal Pradesh Act 1971, Himachal emerged as the 18th state of the Republic of India. Himachal has many prestigious boarding schools. Hima means snow in Sanskrit. It was named by one of the great Sanskrit scholars of Himachal Pradesh, Acharya Diwakar Datt Sharma. Himachal Pradesh has one of the highest per capita incomes of any state in India. Due to the abundance of perennial rivers, Himachal also sells hydro electricity to other states such as Delhi, Punjab and Rajasthan.[8] The economy of the state is highly dependent on three sources: hydroelectric power, tourism and agriculture.[9][10] Hindus make up 95% of the state population, making it the most Hindu state (proportionally), in India. According to a 2005 Transparency International survey, Himachal Pradesh is ranked the second-least corrupt state in the country after Kerala.[11]

Himachal Pradesh

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HistoryThe history of the area that now constitutes Himachal Pradesh dates back to the time when the Indus valley civilisation flourished between 2250 and 1750 BCE.[12] Tribes such as the Koilis, Halis, Dagis, Dhaugris, Dasa, Khasas, Kinnars and Kirats inhabited the region from pre-historic era. During the Vedic period, several small republics known as "Janapada" existed which were later conquered by the Gupta Empire.[13] After a brief period of supremacy by king Harshavardhana, the region was once again divided into several local powers headed by chieftains, including some Rajput principalities. These kingdoms that enjoyed a large degree of independence were devastated by Muslim invaders a number of times.[12] Mahmud Ghaznavi conquered Kangra at the beginning of the 10th century. Timur and Sikander Lodi also marched through the lower hills of the state and captured a number of forts and fought many battles.[12] Several hill states acknowledged Mughal suzerainty and paid regular tribute to the Mughals.[14]

Sansar Chand (c.17651823)

The Gurkhas, a martial tribe came to power in Nepal in the year 1768.[12] They consolidated their military power and began to expand their territory.[12] Gradually the Gorkhas annexed Sirmour and Shimla. With the leadership of Amar Singh Thapa, Gorkhas laid siege to Kangra. They managed to defeat Sansar Chand Katoch, the ruler of Kangra, in 1806 with the help of many provincial chiefs. However Gorkhas could not capture Kangra fort which came under Maharaja Ranjeet Singh in 1809. After the defeat the Gorkhas began to expand towards the south of the state. However, Raja Ram Singh, Raja of Siba State managed to capture the fort of Siba from the remnants of Lahore Darbar in Samvat 1846,[12] during the First Anglo-Sikh War. They came into direct conflict with the British along the tarai belt after which the British expelled them from the provinces of the Satluj.[12] Thus the British gradually emerged as the paramount powers.[12] The revolt of 1857 or first Indian war of independence resulted due to the building up of political, social, economic, religious and military grievances against the British government.[12] People of the hill states were not as politically active as the people in other parts of the country.[12] They remained more or less inactive and so did their rulers, with the exception of Bushahr.[12] Some of them even rendered help to the British government during the revolt. Among them were the rulers of Chamba, Bilaspur, Bhagal and Dhami. The rulers of Bushars rather acted in a manner hostile to the interests of British.[12] The British territories in the hill came under British Crown after Queen Victoria's proclamation of 1858. The states of Chamba, Mandi and Bilaspur made good progress in many fields during the British rule.[12] During World War I, virtually all rulers of the hill states remained loyal and contributed to the British war effort both in the form of men and materials. Amongst these were the states of Kangra, Jaswan, Datarpur, Guler, Nurpur, Chamba, Suket, Mandi and Bilaspur.[12] After independence the Chief Commissioner's Province of H.P. came into being on 15 April 1948 as a result of integration of 28 petty princely states (including feudatory princes and zaildars) in the promontories of the western Himalaya, known in full as the Simla Hills States & four Punjab southern hill States by issue of the Himachal Pradesh (Administration) Order, 1948 under Sections 3 & 4 of the Extra-Provincial Jurisdiction Act, 1947 (later renamed as the Foreign Jurisdiction Act, 1947 vide A.O. of 1950). The State of Bilaspur was merged in the Himachal Pradesh on 1 April 1954 by the Himachal Pradesh and Bilaspur (New State) Act, 1954. Himachal became a part C state on 26 January 1950 with the implementation of the Constitution of India and the Lt. Governor was

Himachal Pradesh appointed. Legislative Assembly was elected in 1952. Himachal Pradesh became a Union Territory on 1 November 1956.[12] Following area of Punjab State namely Simla, Kangra, Kulu and Lahul and Spiti Districts, Nalagarh tehsil of Ambala District, Lohara, Amb and Una kanungo circles, some area of Santokhgarh kanungo circle and some other specified area of Una tehsil of Hoshiarpur District besides some parts of Dhar Kalan Kanungo circle of Pathankot tehsil of Gurdaspur District; were merged with Himachal Pradesh on 1 November 1966 on enactment of Punjab Reorganisation Act, 1966 by the Parliament. On 18 December 1970, the State of Himachal Pradesh Act was passed by Parliament and the new state came into being on 25 January 1971. Thus Himachal emerged as the eighteenth state of the Indian Union.[12] Recently, there has been a growing political and scholarly campaign in Nepal according to which all the lands that was taken by the then East India Company shall be returned to Nepal, the then Kingdom of Nepal.[15] The campaign is named Greater Nepal and its campaigners state that since those lands were taken out of the control of Nepal by British on the grounds of Sugauli Treaty which was voided by 1950 Indo-Nepal Treaty of Peace and Friendship, legally the part of the land in India including land in Himachal until Sutlej belongs to Nepal.

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Geography and climate

Dal Lake

A summer view of Khajjiar.

ClimateTemperature Avg. Winter 7 C (45F)

Avg. Summer 28 C (82F) Precipitation 1469mm (57.8in)

Himachal is situated in the western Himalayas. Covering an area of 55673 kilometres (34594 mi),[5] Himachal Pradesh is a mountainous state with elevation ranging from about 350 metres (1148ft) to 7000 metres (22966 ft)

Himachal Pradesh above the sea level.[16] The drainage system of Himachal is composed both of rivers and glaciers. Himalayan rivers criss-cross the entire mountain chain. In fact the rivers are older than the mountain system.[17] Himachal Pradesh provides water to both the Indus and Ganges basins.[18] The drainage systems of the region are the Chandra Bhaga or the Chenab, the Ravi, the Beas, the Sutlej and the Yamuna. These rivers are perennial and are fed by snow and rainfall. They are protected by an extensive cover of natural vegetation.[18]

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Lahaul, Himachal Pradesh.

There is great variation in the climatic conditions of Himachal due to extreme variation in elevation. The climate varies from hot and sub-humid tropical in the southern tracts to cold, alpine and glacial in the northern and eastern mountain ranges with more elevation.[19] The state has areas like Dharamsala that receive very heavy rainfall, as well as those like Lahaul and Spiti that are cold and almost rainless. Broadly Himachal experience three seasons; hot weather season, cold weather season and rainy season. Summer lasts from mid April till the end of June and most parts become very hot (except in alpine zone which experience mild summer) with the average temperature ranging from 28C (82F) to 32 C (90F). Winter lasts from late November till mid March. Snowfall is common in alpine tracts (generally above 2200 metres (7218ft) i.e. in the Higher and Trans-Himalayan region).

Flora and faunaAccording to 2003 Forest Survey of India report, legally defined forest areas constitute 66.52% of the area of Himachal Pradesh, although area under tree cover is only 25.78%.[20] Vegetation in the state is dictated by elevation and precipitation. The southern part of the state