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Maharashtra
Maharashtra
(/mɑːhəˈrɑːʃtrə/; Marathi: [məharaːʂʈrə] ( listen), abbr. MH) is a state in the western region of India
India
and is India's second-most populous state and third-largest state by area. Spread over 307,713 km2 (118,809 sq mi), it is bordered by the Arabian Sea
Arabian Sea
to the west and the Indian states of Karnataka, Telangana, Goa, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh
Madhya Pradesh
and the Union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli. It is also the world's second-most populous subnational entity. It has over 112 million inhabitants and its capital, Mumbai, has a population of approximately 18 million. Nagpur
Nagpur
is Maharashtra's second capital as well as its winter capital[7]p Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is the wealthiest state by all major economic parameters and also the most industrialized state in India. The state contributes about 25% of the country's industrial output and 23.2% of its GDP (2010–11).[8] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is the largest state-economy in India
India
with ₹19.86 lakh crore (US$300 billion) in gross domestic product. As of 2017, the GDP per capita reduced to ₹165,000 (US$2,500).[2][9] Mumbai, also known as Bombay (the official name until 1995), has been the capital of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
since the day it was formed. The major rivers of the state are the Godavari
Godavari
and the Krishna. The Narmada and Tapti Rivers flow near the border between Maharashtra
Maharashtra
and Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is the third most urbanised state among major states in India.[10][11] Ancient and medieval Maharashtra was ruled by the Satavahana
Satavahana
dynasty, Kadambas, Rashtrakuta dynasty, Western Chalukyas, Deccan sultanates, Mughals and Marathas respectively. Ruins, monuments, tombs, forts and places of worship left by these rulers are dotted around the state. They include the World Heritage Sites of the Ajanta caves
Ajanta caves
and Ellora caves. There are also numerous forts associated with the life of Shivaji Maharaj.

Contents

1 Etymology 2 History 3 Geography and climate 4 Biodiversity 5 Regions, divisions and districts 6 Demographics

6.1 Language

7 Government and politics 8 Economy 9 Transport 10 Education and social development

10.1 History 10.2 Primary and secondary level 10.3 Tertiary level 10.4 Vocational Training

11 Infrastructure

11.1 Healthcare 11.2 Energy

12 Culture

12.1 Cuisine 12.2 Attire 12.3 Music and dance 12.4 Literature 12.5 Films 12.6 Theatre 12.7 Media 12.8 Sports

12.8.1 Indigenous sports

13 Tourism 14 See also 15 References 16 External links

Etymology[edit] The modern Marathi language
Marathi language
developed from the Maharashtri Prakrit,[12] and the word Marhatta (later used for the Marathas) is found in the Jain
Jain
Maharashtri literature. The terms Maharashtra, Maharashtri, Marathi and Maratha
Maratha
may have derived from the same root. However, their exact etymology is uncertain.[13] The Nashik
Nashik
Gazetteer states that in 246 BC Maharatta is mentioned as one of the places to which Mauryan emperor Ashoka
Ashoka
sent an embassy, and Maharashtraka is recorded in a Chalukyan inscription of 580 CE as including three provinces and 99,000 villages. But the Marathas as a people do not seem to be mentioned before the thirteenth or fourteenth century.[14][15][better source needed] The most widely accepted theory among the linguistic scholars is that the words Maratha
Maratha
and Maharashtra
Maharashtra
ultimately derived from a combination of Maha (Marathi: महा) and rashtrika (Marathi: राष्ट्रिका).[13] the name of a tribe or dynasty of petty chiefs ruling in the Deccan region.[16] Another theory is that the term is derived from Maha ("great") and ratha / rathi (chariot / charioteer), which refers to a skilful northern fighting force that migrated southward into the area.[16][17] An alternative theory states that the term derives from the word Maha ("great") and Rashtra ("nation/dominion").[18] However, this theory is somewhat controversial among modern scholars who believe it to be the Sanskritised interpretation of later writers.[13] History[edit] Main articles: History of Maharashtra
History of Maharashtra
and Maratha
Maratha
Empire See also: Chronology of statehood of Maharashtra Chalcolithic
Chalcolithic
sites belonging to the Jorwe culture (c. 1300–700 BCE) have been discovered throughout the state.[19][20] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
was ruled by the Maurya Empire
Maurya Empire
in the 4th and 3rd centuries BCE. Around 230 BCE Maharashtra
Maharashtra
came under the rule of the Satavahana dynasty
Satavahana dynasty
for 400 years.[21] The greatest ruler of the Satavahana
Satavahana
Dynasty was Gautamiputra Satakarni. In 90 CE Vedishri,[22] son of the Satavahana
Satavahana
king Satakarni, the "Lord of Dakshinapatha, wielder of the unchecked wheel of Sovereignty", made Junnar, thirty miles north of Pune, the capital of his kingdom. The state was also ruled by Western Satraps, Gupta Empire, Gurjara-Pratihara, Vakataka, Kadambas, Chalukya
Chalukya
Empire, Rashtrakuta Dynasty, and Western Chalukya
Chalukya
before finally, the Yadava rule. The Buddhist
Buddhist
Ajanta Caves
Ajanta Caves
in present-day Aurangabad display influences from the Satavahana
Satavahana
and Vakataka
Vakataka
style. The caves were possibly excavated during this period.[23]

Kailasanatha temple, remarkably carved out of one single rock was built by Rashtrakuta king Krishna I
Krishna I
(r. 756-773 CE)[24]

The Ramayana
Ramayana
panel at Ellora Caves, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

The Chalukya
Chalukya
dynasty ruled from the 6th century to the 8th century CE and the two prominent rulers were Pulakeshin II, who defeated the north Indian Emperor Harsha, and Vikramaditya II, who defeated the Arab
Arab
invaders in the 8th century. The Rashtrakuta dynasty
Rashtrakuta dynasty
ruled Maharashtra
Maharashtra
from the 8th to the 10th century.[25] The Arab
Arab
traveller Sulaiman described the ruler of the Rashtrakuta Dynasty
Rashtrakuta Dynasty
(Amoghavarsha) as "one of the 4 great kings of the world".[26] Shilahara Dynasty began as vassals of the Rashtrakuta dynasty
Rashtrakuta dynasty
which ruled the Deccan plateau between the 8th and 10th centuries. From the early 11th century to the 12th century the Deccan Plateau, which includes a significant part of Maharashtra, was dominated by the Western Chalukya Empire and the Chola dynasty.[27] Several battles were fought between the Western Chalukya Empire
Western Chalukya Empire
and the Chola dynasty
Chola dynasty
in the Deccan Plateau during the reigns of Raja Raja Chola I, Rajendra Chola I, Jayasimha II, Someshvara I
Someshvara I
and Vikramaditya VI.[28] In the early 14th century, the Yadava dynasty, which ruled most of present-day Maharashtra, was overthrown by the Delhi Sultanate
Delhi Sultanate
ruler Ala-ud-din Khalji. Later, Muhammad bin Tughluq
Muhammad bin Tughluq
conquered parts of the Deccan, and temporarily shifted his capital from Delhi
Delhi
to Daulatabad in Maharashtra. After the collapse of the Tughluqs in 1347, the local Bahmani Sultanate
Bahmani Sultanate
of Gulbarga took over, governing the region for the next 150 years.[29] After the break-up of the Bahamani
Bahamani
sultanate in 1518, Maharashtra
Maharashtra
split into five Deccan Sultanates: Nizamshah of Ahmednagar, Adilshah
Adilshah
of Bijapur, Qutubshah
Qutubshah
of Golkonda, Bidarshah
Bidarshah
of Bidar and Imadshah
Imadshah
of Elichpur. These kingdoms often fought with each other. United, they decisively defeated the Vijayanagara Empire
Vijayanagara Empire
of the south in 1565.[30] The present area of Mumbai
Mumbai
was ruled by the Sultanate of Gujarat
Gujarat
before its capture by Portugal
Portugal
in 1535 and the Faruqi dynasty
Faruqi dynasty
ruled the Khandesh
Khandesh
region between 1382 and 1601 before finally getting annexed by the Mughal Empire. Malik Ambar, the regent of the Nizamshahi dynasty of Ahmednagar
Ahmednagar
from 1607 to 1626.[31] increased the strength and power of Murtaza Nizam
Nizam
Shah and raised a large army. Malik Ambar
Malik Ambar
is said to have been a proponent of guerilla warfare in the Deccan region. Malik Ambar
Malik Ambar
assisted Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in Delhi
Delhi
against his stepmother, Nur Jahan, who had ambitions of seating her son-in-law on the throne.[32] By the early 17th century, Shahaji Bhosale, an ambitious local general who had served Ahmadnagar Nizamshahi, the Mughals and Adil Shah of Bijapur at different periods during his career, attempted to establish his independent rule.[33] His son Shivaji Maharaj
Shivaji Maharaj
succeeded in establishing the Maratha Empire
Maratha Empire
which was further expanded during the 18th century by the Bhat family Peshwas
Peshwas
based in Pune, Bhonsle
Bhonsle
of Nagpur, Gaekwad
Gaekwad
of Baroda, Holkar
Holkar
of Indore, Scindia
Scindia
of Gwalior.[34] At its peak, the empire covered much of the subcontinent, encompassing a territory of over 2.8 million km². The Marathas are credited to a large extent for ending the Mughal rule in India.[35][36][37] The Marathas defeated the Mughals, and conquered large territories in northern and central parts of the Indian subcontinent. After their defeat at the hand of Ahmad Shah Abdali's Afghan forces in the Third Battle of Panipat in 1761, the Maratha
Maratha
suffered a setback. However, the Marathas soon regained lost influence and ruled central and north India
India
including New Delhi
New Delhi
until the end of the eighteenth century. The Third Anglo- Maratha
Maratha
War (1817–1818) led to the end of the Maratha Empire and East India
India
Company ruled the country in 1819.[38][39] The Marathas also developed a potent Navy circa 1660s, which at its peak, dominated the territorial waters of the western coast of India
India
from Mumbai
Mumbai
to Savantwadi.[40] It would engage in attacking the British, Portuguese, Dutch, and Siddi
Siddi
Naval ships and kept a check on their naval ambitions. The Maratha
Maratha
Navy dominated till around the 1730s, was in a state of decline by 1770s, and ceased to exist by 1818.[41]

India
India
contains no more than two great powers, British and Mahratta, and every other state acknowledges the influence of one or the other. Every inch that we recede will be occupied by them. —  Charles Metcalfe, one of the ablest of the British Officials in India
India
and later acting Governor-General, wrote in 1806

The British governed western Maharashtra
Maharashtra
as part of the Bombay Presidency, which spanned an area from Karachi
Karachi
in Pakistan to northern Deccan. A number of the Maratha
Maratha
states persisted as princely states, retaining autonomy in return for acknowledging British suzerainty. The largest princely states in the territory were Nagpur, Satara and Kolhapur; Satara was annexed to the Bombay Presidency
Bombay Presidency
in 1848, and Nagpur
Nagpur
was annexed in 1853 to become Nagpur
Nagpur
Province, later part of the Central Provinces. Berar, which had been part of the Nizam
Nizam
of Hyderabad's kingdom, was occupied by the British in 1853 and annexed to the Central Provinces
Central Provinces
in 1903.[42] However, a large part called Marathwada
Marathwada
remained part of the Nizam's Hyderabad State
Hyderabad State
throughout the British period. The period of British rule was marked by social reforms and an improvement in infrastructure as well as revolts due to their discriminatory policies. At the turn of the 20th century, the struggle for independence took shape, led by radical nationalist Bal Gangadhar Tilak and the moderates like Justice Mahadev Govind Ranade, Gopal Krishna Gokhale, Pherozeshah Mehta
Pherozeshah Mehta
and Dadabhai Naoroji, Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, Jyotirao Phule
Jyotirao Phule
- social reformers who were all born in this region. Tilak was an inspiration to many Nationalists from the following generation like Vinayak Damodar Savarkar. After the partial autonomy given to the states by the Government of India
India
Act of 1935, B. G. Kher became the first Chief Minister of the Congress party led Government of tri-lingual Bombay Presidency.[43] The ultimatum to the British during the Quit India
India
Movement was given in Mumbai, and culminated in the transfer of power and independence in 1947. After India's independence, the Deccan States, including Kolhapur
Kolhapur
were integrated into Bombay State, which was created from the former Bombay Presidency in 1950.[44] In 1956, the States Reorganisation Act reorganised the Indian states along linguistic lines, and Bombay Presidency State was enlarged by the addition of the predominantly Marathi-speaking regions of Marathwada
Marathwada
(Aurangabad Division) from erstwhile Hyderabad state
Hyderabad state
and Vidarbha
Vidarbha
region from the Central Provinces and Berar. The southernmost part of Bombay State
Bombay State
was ceded to Mysore. From 1954 to 1955 the people of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
strongly protested against bilingual Bombay state
Bombay state
and Samyukta Maharashtra Samiti, was formed.[45][46] The Mahagujarat Movement
Mahagujarat Movement
was started, seeking a separate Gujarat
Gujarat
state. Keshavrao Jedhe, S.M. Joshi, Shripad Amrit Dange, Pralhad Keshav Atre and Gopalrao Khedkar fought for a separate state of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
with Mumbai
Mumbai
as its capital under the banner of Samyukta Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Movement. On 1 May 1960, following mass protests and 105 deaths, the separate Marathi-speaking state was formed by dividing earlier Bombay State
Bombay State
into the new states of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
and Gujarat.[47] The state continues to have a dispute with Karnataka
Karnataka
regarding the region of Belgaum
Belgaum
and Karwar.[48][49][50] Geography and climate[edit] Main article: Geography of Maharashtra

Bramhagiri hills in Sahyadri mountain range (Western Ghats)

Dried up Godavari
Godavari
at Puntamba, Ahmadnagar district after a poor Monsoon

Wardha River
Wardha River
at Pulgaon

Maharashtra
Maharashtra
occupies the western and central part of the country and has a long coastline stretching 720 kilometres[51] along the Arabian Sea.[52] One of the more prominent physical features of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is the Deccan plateau, which is separated from the Konkan
Konkan
coastline by 'Ghats'.[53] The Ghats are a succession of steep hills, periodically bisected by narrow roads. Most of the famous hill stations of the state are at the Ghats. The Western Ghats
Western Ghats
(or the Sahyadri Mountain range) provide a physical backbone to the state on the west, while the Satpura Hills
Satpura Hills
along the north and Bhamragad-Chiroli-Gaikhuri ranges on the east serve as its natural borders.[54] The state is surrounded by Gujarat
Gujarat
to the north west, Madhya Pradesh
Madhya Pradesh
to the north, Chhattisgarh to the east, Telangana
Telangana
to the south east, Karnataka
Karnataka
to the south and Goa
Goa
to the south west.[55] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is the third largest state by area in India.[56] The Western Ghats
Western Ghats
better known as Sahyadri, are a hilly range running parallel to the coast, at an average elevation of 1,200 metres (4,000 ft).[53] Kalsubai, a peak in the Sahyadris, near Nashik city is the highest elevated point in Maharashtra.[57] To the west of these hills lie the Konkan
Konkan
coastal plains, 50–80 kilometres in width. To the east of the Ghats lies the flat Deccan Plateau. Forests comprise 17% of the total area of the state.[52] A majority of the forests are in the eastern and Sahyadri regions of the state. The main rivers of the state are Krishna, Bhima, Godavari, Tapi-Purna and Wardha-Wainganga.[52][58] Since the central parts of the state receives low rainfall, most of the rivers in the region have multiple dams. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has around 1821 notable large dams.[59] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is divided into five geographic regions. Konkan
Konkan
is the western coastal region, between the Western Ghats
Western Ghats
and the sea.[60] Kandesh
Kandesh
is the north-western region lying in the valley of the Tapti River.[58] Jalgaon, Dhule
Dhule
and Bhusawal
Bhusawal
are the major cities of this region.[61] Desh is in the centre of the state.[62] Marathwada, which was a part of the princely state of Hyderabad until 1956, is located in the southeastern part of the state.[52][63] Aurangabad and Nanded are the main cities of the region.[64] Vidarbha
Vidarbha
is the easternmost region of the state, formerly part of Central Provinces
Central Provinces
and Berar. Nagpur, where the winter session of the state assembly is held, Akola and Amravati
Amravati
are the main cities in the region.[52] Sahyadri range, with an elevation of 1000 meters, is known for its crowning plateaus.[65] Lying between the Arabian Sea
Arabian Sea
and the Sahyadri Range, Konkan
Konkan
is narrow coastal lowland, just 50 km wide and with an elevation below 200 meters.[66] The third important region is the Satpura hills along the northern border, and the Bhamragad-Chiroli-Gaikhuri ranges on the eastern border, which form physical barriers preventing easy movement.[52] These ranges also serve as natural limits to the state.[52][67] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has typical monsoon climate, with hot, rainy and cold weather seasons. However, dew, frost and hail also occur sometimes, depending upon the seasonal weather. The winter in January and February is followed by summer between March and May and the monsoon season between June and September. Summers are extreme with March, April and May as the hottest months. During April and May thunderstorms are common all over the state. Temperature varies between 22 °C and 39 °C during this season. Rainfall starts normally in the first week of June. July is the wettest month in Maharashtra, while August also gets substantial rain. Monsoon starts its retreat with the coming of September to the state. Winter season is a cool, dry spell, with clear skies gentle breeze; pleasant weather prevails from November to February. But the eastern part of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
sometimes receives some rainfall. Temperature varies between 12 °C and 34 °C during this season. Rainfall in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
differs from region to region. Thane, Raigad, Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg districts, receive heavy rains of an average of 200 centimetres annually. But the districts of Nasik, Pune, Ahmednagar, Dhule, Jalgaon, Satara, Sangli, Solapur
Solapur
and parts of Kolhapur
Kolhapur
get rainfall less than 50 centimetres. Rainfall particularly concentrates at the Konkan
Konkan
and Sahyadrian Maharashtra. Central Maharashtra
Maharashtra
receives less rainfall. However, under the influence of the Bay of Bengal, eastern Vidarbha
Vidarbha
receives good rainfall in July, August and September.[68] Biodiversity[edit]

State symbols of Maharashtra[69]

Animal Indian giant squirrel

Bird Yellow-footed green pigeon

Tree Mango

Flower Lagerstroemia speciosa

Butterfly Blue Mormon

Flora of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is heterogeneous in composition. In 2012 the recorded thick forest area in the state was 61,939 km2 (23,915 sq mi) which was about 20.13% of the state's geographical area.[70] There are three main Public Forestry Institutions (PFIs) in the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
state: the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Forest Department (MFD), the Forest Development Corporation of Maharashtra (FDCM) and the Directorate of Social Forestry (SFD).[71] The flora of regions such as Nag region formed by Nagpur, Bhandara, Chandrapur
Chandrapur
and Gadchiroli and the plateau of Vidarbha
Vidarbha
composed by Wardha, Amravati, Yavatmal, Akola
Akola
and Buldhana districts.[70] Most of the forests are found in the Sahyadri region and are very dense.[72] These forests are confined to areas which have low annual rainfall (50–70 cm), a mean annual temperature of 25–27 °C and low humidity. Some of the forest areas are converted into wildlife reserves, thus preserving their biodiversity.[73] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is known for its extensive avifauna. The state has three game reserves, as well as several national parks and bird sanctuaries.[74] The six tiger reserves located in the state cover a total area of 9133 sqkm. Wildlife sanctuaries in the state include Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary, Radhanagari Wildlife Sanctuary, Bor Wildlife Sanctuary, Koyna Wildlife Sanctuary, Chandoli National Park, Sanjay Gandhi National Park
Sanjay Gandhi National Park
and Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary.[75] The most common animals are found in the state are tigers, black panthers, leopards, gaur, sloth bears, sambar, four-horned antelope, blue bull, chital, barking deer, mouse deer, civet cats, jackals, jungle cats, striped hyena, and hare.[76] Other animals in the state include reptiles such as lizards, cobras and kraits.[74] The national parks of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
possess a variety of plant species that include jamun, palas, shisam, neem, teak, dhawada, kalam, ain, bija, shirish, mango, acacia, awala, kadamba, moha, terminalia, hedu and ficus.[77] Regions, divisions and districts[edit]

Divisions of Maharashtra

Main article: List of districts of Maharashtra See also: Talukas of Maharashtra Maharashtra
Maharashtra
consists of six administrative divisions:[78]

Amravati Aurangabad Konkan Nagpur Nashik Pune

The state's six divisions are further divided into 36 districts, 109 sub-divisions and 357 talukas.[79] Maharashtra's top five districts by population, as ranked by the 2011 Census, are listed in the following table.[80] Each district is governed by a district collector or district magistrate, appointed either by the Indian Administrative Service
Indian Administrative Service
or the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Civil Service.[81] Districts are subdivided into sub-divisions,(Taluka) governed by sub-divisional magistrates, and again into blocks.[82] A block consists of panchayats (village councils) and town municipalities.[83][84] Talukas are intermediate level panchayat between the Zilla Parishad (district councils) at the district level and gram panchayat (village councils) at the lower level.[82][85] Demographics[edit] Further information: Religion in Maharashtra, Languages of India, and Marathi people

Siddhivinayak Temple in Mumbai, Hinduism
Hinduism
is the dominant religion in Maharashtra

Population growth 

Census Pop.

1961 39,554,000

1971 50,412,000

27.5%

1981 62,784,000

24.5%

1991 78,937,000

25.7%

2001 96,752,000

22.6%

2011 112,373,000

16.1%

Source:Census of India[86]

Religion in Maharashtra
Religion in Maharashtra
(2011)[87]    Hinduism
Hinduism
(79.8%)    Islam
Islam
(11.5%)    Buddhism
Buddhism
(5.8%)    Jainism
Jainism
(1.2%)    Christianity
Christianity
(1.0%)    Sikhism
Sikhism
(0.2%)   Other (0.5%)

According to the provisional results of the 2011 national census, Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is the richest state in India
India
and second most populous state in India
India
with a population of 112,374,333 (9.28% of India's population) of which male and female are 58,243,056 and 54,131,277 respectively.[88] The total population growth in 2011 was 15.99 percent while in the previous decade it was 22.57 percent.[89][90] Since independence, the decadal growth rate of population has remained higher (except in the year 1971) than the national average. For the first time, in the year 2011, it was found to be lower than the national average.[90] The 2011 census for the state found 55% of the population to be rural with 45% being urban based.[91][92] Marathis comprise the majority of the population. Maratha, Mahar, Kunbi, Muslim, Dhangar, Brahmin, Mali, Mang, Lingayat, Gond, Teli, Bhil, Koli, Dhimar, Rajput, Banjara, Lambadi, Gowari, Agri, Christian, Chambar, Koshti, Vani, Komati, Warli, Mannerwarlu, Jain, Vanjari, Sonar, Kumbhar, Dewang, Kalar, Buddhist
Buddhist
are the major castes and tribes of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
. Bihari, Gujarati, Sindhis, Punjabis, Parsis, Marwari, Kannada, Telugu and Tamil minorities are scattered throughout the state. The 2011 census found scheduled castes and scheduled tribes to account for 11.8 and 8.9% of the population respectively.[93] The scheduled tribes include adivasis such as Thakar, Warli, Konkana and Halba.[94] According to the 2011 census, Hinduism
Hinduism
was the principal religion in the state at 79.8% of the total population, while Muslims constituted 11.5% of the total population. Buddhism
Buddhism
accounted for 5.8% in Maharashtra's total population, with 6,531,200 followers, which is 77.36% of all Buddhists in India. Sikhs, Christians and Jains constituted 0.2%, 1.0%, 1.2% of the population respectively.[87] The state contributed 9.28% to India's population.[95] The sex ratio in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
was 925 females per 1000 males, which was below the national average of 940.[5] The density of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
was 365 inhabitants per km2 which was lower than national average 382 per km2. Since 1921, the populations of Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg shrank by −4.96% and −2.30% respectively, while the population of Thane
Thane
grew by 35.9%, followed by Pune
Pune
at 30.3%.[96] The literacy rate rose to 83.2%.[97] Of this, male literacy stood at 89.82% and female literacy 75.48%.[88][98] Language[edit]

Languages in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
(2001)[99]   Marathi (68.79%)    Hindi
Hindi
(11.03%)    Urdu
Urdu
(7.12%)   Gujarati (2.39%)   Other (10.67%)

The official language is Marathi[100] although different regions have their own dialects.[101] English is applicable in urban areas. Spoken Marathi language
Marathi language
varies by district, area or locality in its tone and a few words. Konkani
Konkani
and Gujarati are also spoken in some areas. Other major dialects include Varhadii spoken in the Vidarbha
Vidarbha
region and Dangii spoken near the Maharashtra- Gujarat
Gujarat
border. The sound /l/ is abundantly used in many verbs and nouns in Marathi. It is replaced by the sound /j/ in the Varhadii dialect, which makes it quite distinct.[102] According to the economic survey of Maharashtra (2008–09), the percentage of the state's population that names Marathi as its mother tongue has declined to 68.8% from 76.5% over the past three decades, while there has been a sharp rise in the Hindi-speaking population (11% from 5%) in the same period.[103] The languages taught in schools in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
under the three-language formula are Marathi, Hindi
Hindi
and English.[99] Government and politics[edit] Main article: Government of Maharashtra See also: Politics of Maharashtra
Politics of Maharashtra
and List of Chief Ministers of Maharashtra

The Bombay High Court, one of the most distinguished high courts in India

Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has a parliamentary system of government with two democratically elected houses, the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council.The Maharashtra Legislative Assembly
Maharashtra Legislative Assembly
(Vidhan Sabha) consists of 288 members who are elected for five-year terms.[104] The Maharashtra Legislative Council
Maharashtra Legislative Council
(Vidhan Parishad) is a permanent body of 78 members with a third of members replaced every two years.The government of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is headed by the Chief Minister, who is chosen by the party or coalition holding the majority in the Legislative Assembly.The Chief Minister, along with the council of ministers, drives the legislative agenda and exercises most of the executive powers.[105] However, the constitutional and formal head of the state is the Governor, who is appointed for a five-year term by the President of India
India
on the advice of the Union government.[106] presently Devendra Fadnavis
Devendra Fadnavis
is the Chief Minister and C. Vidyasagar Rao is the Governor. The politics of the state since its formation in 1960 has been dominated by the Indian National Congress
Indian National Congress
party. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
became a bastion of the Congress party producing stalwarts such as Yashwantrao Chavan, Vasantdada Patil, Vasantrao Naik and Shankarrao Chavan. Sharad Pawar has been a towering personality in the state and National politics for over thirty years. During his career, he has split the Congress twice with significant consequences for the state politics.[107][108] The Congress party enjoyed a near unchallenged dominance of the political landscape until 1995 when the Shiv Sena
Shiv Sena
and the Bharatiya Janata Party
Bharatiya Janata Party
(BJP) secured an overwhelming majority in the state to form a coalition government.[109] After his second parting from the Congress party in 1999, Sharad Pawar
Sharad Pawar
formed the NCP but formed a coalition with the Congress to keep out the BJP-Shivsena combine out of the government for the last fifteen years. Prithviraj Chavan of the Congress party was the last Chief Minister of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
under the Congress / NCP alliance until September 2014.[110][111][112] For the 2014 assembly polls, the two alliances between NCP and Congress and that between BJP and Shivsena respectively broke down over seat allocations. In the election, the largest number of seats went to the Bharatiya Janata Party, with 122 seats. The BJP initially formed a minority government under Devendra Fadnavis but the Shivsena has, as of December 2014, entered the Government and therefore the Government now enjoys a comfortable majority in the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Vidhansabha.[113] The people of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
also elect 48 members to the Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Indian Parliament. In the 2014 general elections, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), consisting of the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Shiv Sena, and Swabhimani Paksha, won 23, 18, and 1 seats, respectively.[114] The members of the state Legislative Assembly elect 19 members to the Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Indian Parliament.[115]

First session of the Indian National Congress
Indian National Congress
in Bombay (28–31 December 1885).

The state has a long tradition of highly powerful planning bodies at district and local levels. Local self governance institutions in rural areas include 34 zilla parishads, 355 Taluka Panchayat samitis and 27,993 Gram panchayats. Urban areas in the state are governed by 27 Municipal Corporations, 222 Municipal Councils, four Nagar Panchayats and seven Cantonment Boards.[90][116] The administration in each district is headed by a Deputy Commissioner, who belongs to the Indian Administrative Service and is assisted by a number of officers belonging to Maharashtra
Maharashtra
state services.[117] The Deputy Commissioner of Police, an officer belonging to the Indian Police Service and assisted by the officers of the Maharashtra Police
Maharashtra Police
Service, maintains law and order in addition to other related issues in each district. The Deputy Conservator of Forests, an officer belonging to the Indian Forest Service, manages the forests, environment and wildlife of the district, assisted by the officers of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Forest Service and Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Forest Subordinate Service.[118] Sectoral development in the districts is looked after by the district head of each development department, such as Public Works, Health, Education, Agriculture and Animal Husbandry.[119][120] The judiciary in the state consists of the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
High Court (The High Court of Bombay), district and session courts in each district and lower courts and judges at the taluka level.[121] The High Court has regional branches at Nagpur
Nagpur
and Aurangabad in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
and Panaji
Panaji
which is the capital of Goa.[122] The state cabinet on 13 May 2015 passed a resolution favouring the setting up of one more bench of the Bombay high court in Kolhapur, covering the region.[123] The President of India
India
appoints the chief justice of the High Court of the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
judiciary on the advice of the chief justice of the Supreme Court of India
India
as well as the Governor of Maharashtra.[124] Other judges are appointed by the chief justice of the high court of the judiciary on the advice of the Chief Justice.[125] Subordinate Judicial Service is another vital part of the judiciary of Maharashtra.[126] The subordinate judiciary or the district courts are categorised into two divisions: the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
civil judicial services and higher judicial service.[127] While the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
civil judicial services comprises the Civil Judges (Junior Division)/Judicial Magistrates and civil judges (Senior Division)/Chief Judicial Magistrate, the higher judicial service comprises civil and sessions judges.[128] The Subordinate judicial service of the judiciary is controlled by the District Judge.[125][129] Economy[edit] Main article: Economy of Maharashtra Further information: List of conglomerates in Maharashtra

Net State Domestic Product at Factor Cost at Current Prices (2004–05 Base)[130] figures in crores of Indian rupees

Year Net State Domestic Product

2004–2005 ₹3.683 trillion (US$56 billion)

2005–2006 ₹4.335 trillion (US$66 billion)

2006–2007 ₹5.241 trillion (US$80 billion)

2007–2008 ₹6.140 trillion (US$94 billion)

2008–2009 ₹6.996 trillion (US$110 billion)

2009–2010 ₹8.178 trillion (US$130 billion)

2013- 2014 ₹15.101 trillion (US$230 billion)

2014-2015 ₹16.866 trillion (US$260 billion)

The economy of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is driven by manufacturing, international trade, Mass Media
Mass Media
(television, motion pictures, video games, recorded music), aerospace, technology, petroleum, fashion, apparel, and tourism.[131] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is the most industrialised state and has maintained the leading position in the industrial sector in India.[132] The State is pioneer in small scale industries.[133] Mumbai, the capital of state and the financial capital of India, houses the headquarters of most of the major corporate and financial institutions. India's main stock exchanges and capital market and commodity exchanges are located in Mumbai. The State continues to attract industrial investments from domestic as well as foreign institutions. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has the largest proportion of taxpayers in India
India
and its share markets transact almost 70 per cent of the country's stocks.[134]

Mumbai
Mumbai
is major contributor to the economy of Maharashtra

The Service sector
Service sector
dominates the economy of Maharashtra, accounting for 61.4% of the value addition and 69.3% of the value of output in the country.[135] The state's per-capita income is 40% higher than the all- India
India
average.[136] The gross state domestic product (GSDP) at current prices for 2011–12 is estimated at 11,995.48 billion and contributes about 14.4% of the GDP.[137] The agriculture and allied activities sector contributes 12.9% to the state's income.[138][139] Net State Domestic Product (State Income), as per the first revised estimates was 10,827.51 billion and Per Capita State Income was 95,339 during 2011–12. The percentage of fiscal deficit to GSDP was 1.7 per cent and debt stock to GSDP was 18.4 per cent during 2012–13, well within Consolidated Fiscal Reform Path stipulated by the Thirteenth Finance Commission. In 2012, Maharashtra reported a revenue surplus of ₹1524.9 million (US$24 million), with a total revenue of ₹1,367,117 million (US$22 billion) and a spending of ₹1,365,592.1 million (US$22 billion).[135] Maharashtra ranks first in FDI equity and percentage share of total FDI inflows is 32.28%.[138] Total FDI inflows into Maharashtra
Maharashtra
are US$53.48 billion.[135] Top countries that invested FDI equity in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
(from January 2000 to December 2011) were Mauritius
Mauritius
(39%), Singapore
Singapore
(10%), United Kingdom
United Kingdom
(10%), United States
United States
(7%) and Netherlands
Netherlands
(5%).[135]

Freshly grown sugarcane, agriculture is the second leading occupation in Maharashtra

Maharashtra
Maharashtra
contributes 25% of the country's industrial output[140] and is the most indebted state in the country.[141][142] Industrial activity in state is concentrated in four districts: Mumbai
Mumbai
city, Mumbai
Mumbai
suburban district, Thane
Thane
and Pune
Pune
districts.[143] Mumbai
Mumbai
has the largest share in GSDP (21.5 per cent), both Thane
Thane
and Pune districts contribute about same in the Industry sector, Pune
Pune
district contributes more in the agriculture and allied activities sector, whereas Thane district
Thane district
contributes more in the Services sector.[143] Nashik district
Nashik district
shares highest in the agricultural and allied activities sector, but is far behind in the Industry and Services sectors as compared to Thane
Thane
and Pune
Pune
districts.[143] Industries in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
include chemical and chemical products (17.6%), food and food products (16.1%), refined petroleum products (12.9%), machinery and equipment (8%), textiles (6.9%), basic metals (5.8%), motor vehicles (4.7%) and furniture (4.3%).[144] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is the manufacturing hub for some of the largest public sector industries in India, including Hindustan Petroleum Corporation, Tata Petrodyne and Oil India
India
Ltd.[145] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has an above average knowledge industry in India
India
with the Pune
Pune
Metropolitan area being the leading IT hub in the state.. Approximately 25% of the top 500 companies in the IT sector are situated in Maharashtra.[146] The state accounts for 28% of the software exports of India.[146] The state houses important financial institutions such as the Reserve Bank of India, the Bombay Stock Exchange, the National Stock Exchange of India, the SEBI and the corporate headquarters of numerous Indian companies and multinational corporations. It is also home to some of India's premier scientific and nuclear institutes like BARC, NPCL, IREL, TIFR, AERB, AECI, and the Department of Atomic Energy.[143] The banking sector comprises scheduled and non-scheduled banks.[146] Scheduled banks
Scheduled banks
are of two types, commercial and co-operative. Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs) in India
India
are classified into five types: State Bank of India
India
and its associates, nationalised banks, private sector banks, Regional Rural Banks and others (foreign banks). In 2012, there were 9,053 banking offices in the state, of which about 26 per cent were in rural and 54 per cent were in urban areas. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has a microfinance system, which refers to small scale financial services extended to the poor in both rural and urban areas. It covers a variety of financial instruments, such as lending, savings, life insurance, and crop insurance.[147] With more than half the population being rural, agriculture and allied industries play an important role in the states's economy. The agriculture and allied activities sector contributes 12.9% to the state's income. Staples such as rice and millet are the main monsoon crops. Important cash crops include sugarcane, cotton, oilseeds, tobacco, fruit, vegetables and spices such as turmeric.[54] Animal husbandry is an important agriculture related activity. The State's share in the livestock and poultry population in India
India
is about 7% and 10% respectively. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
was a pioneer in the development of Agricultural Cooperative
Agricultural Cooperative
Societies after independence. In fact, it was an integral part of the then Governing Congress party's vision of ‘rural development with local initiative’. A ‘special’ status was accorded to the sugar cooperatives and the government assumed the role of a mentor by acting as a stakeholder, guarantor and regulator,[148][149][150] Apart from sugar, Cooperatives play a crucial role in dairy,[151] cotton, and fertiliser industries. Transport[edit] Main article: Transport in Maharashtra See also: List of airports in Maharashtra

Mumbai
Mumbai
international airport

Railway near pune city

Nashik
Nashik
Mumbai
Mumbai
highway

A container ship at Jawaharlal Nehru Port
Jawaharlal Nehru Port
(or Nhava Seva)

The state has a large, multi-modal transportation system with the largest road network in India.[152] In 2011, the total length of surface road in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
was 267,452 km;[153] national highways comprised 4,176 km[154] and state highways 3,700 km.[153] The Maharashtra
Maharashtra
State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) provides economical and reliable passenger road transport service in the public sector.[155] These buses, popularly called ST (State Transport), are the preferred mode of transport for much of the populace. Hired forms of transport include metered taxis and auto rickshaws, which often ply specific routes in cities. Other district roads and village roads provide villages accessibility to meet their social needs as well as the means to transport agricultural produce from villages to nearby markets. Major district roads provide a secondary function of linking between main roads and rural roads. Almost 98% of villages are connected via the highways and modern roads in Maharashtra. Average speed on state highways varies between 50–60 km/h (31–37 mi/h) due to heavy presence of vehicles; in villages and towns, speeds are as low as 25–30 km/h (15–18 mi/h).[156] The first passenger train in India
India
ran from Mumbai
Mumbai
to Thane
Thane
on 16 April 1853.[157] Rail transportation consists of the Central Railway and the Western Railway zones of the Indian Railways
Indian Railways
that are headquartered in Mumbai, at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus
Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus
(CST) and Churchgate
Churchgate
respectively.[158][159] The Mumbai
Mumbai
Rajdhani Express, the fastest rajdhani train, connects the Indian capital of New Delhi
New Delhi
to Mumbai.[160] Thane
Thane
and CST are the busiest railway stations in India,[161] the latter serving as a terminal for both long-distance trains and commuter trains of the Mumbai
Mumbai
Suburban Railway. Nanded division of South central railway comprises Marathwada
Marathwada
region. The two principal sea ports, Mumbai
Mumbai
Port and Jawaharlal Nehru Port, which is also in the Mumbai
Mumbai
region, are under the control and supervision of the government of India.[162] There are around 48 minor ports in Maharashtra.[163] Most of these handle passenger traffic and have a limited capacity. None of the major rivers in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
are navigable and so river transport does not exist in the state. Almost all the major cities of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
have airports. CSIA (formerly Bombay International Airport) and Juhu Airport
Juhu Airport
are the two airports in Mumbai. The two other international airports are Pune International Airport and Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport (Nagpur). Flights are operated by both private and government airline companies. Nashik
Nashik
Airport is also major airport. Most of the State's airfields are operated by the Airports Authority of India
India
(AAI) while Reliance Airport Developers (RADPL), currently operate five non-metro airports at Latur, Nanded, Baramati, Osmanabad and Yavatmal on a 95-year lease.[164] The Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC) was set up in 2002 to take up development of airports in the state that are not under the AAI or the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC). MADC is playing the lead role in the planning and implementation of the Multi-modal International Cargo Hub and Airport at Nagpur
Nagpur
(MIHAN) project.[165] Additional smaller airports include Akola, Amravati, Chandrapur, Dhule, Gondia, Jalgaon, Karad, Kolhapur, Nashik
Nashik
Road, Ratnagiri, and Solapur.[166] Education and social development[edit] See also: List of higher education institutions in Maharashtra Census of 2011 showed literacy rates in the state for males and females were around 78% and 67% respectively.[167] History[edit] Scottish missionary John Wilson, Indian Nationalists such as Vasudev Balwant Phadke and Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Social reformers such as Jyotirao Phule, Dhondo Keshav Karve
Dhondo Keshav Karve
and Bhaurao Patil
Bhaurao Patil
all played a leading role in the setting up of modern schools and colleges during the British colonial era .[168][169][170][171] The forerunner of Deccan College Post-Graduate and Research Institute was established in 1821. The Shreemati Nathibai Damodar Thackersey Women's University, the oldest women's liberal arts college in South Asia, started its journey in 1916. College of Engineering Pune, established in 1854, is the third oldest college in Asia.[172] Government Polytechnic Nagpur, established in 1914, is one of the oldest polytechnic in India[citation needed]. Primary and secondary level[edit]

Students at a state run primary school in Raigad district.

Maharashtra
Maharashtra
schools are run by the state government or by private organisations, including religious institutions. Instruction is mainly in Marathi, English or Hindi, though Urdu
Urdu
is also used. The secondary schools are affiliated with the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE), the Central Board for Secondary Education (CBSE), the National Institute of Open School (NIOS) or the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education. Under the 10+2+3 plan, after completing secondary school, students typically enroll for two years in a junior college, also known as pre-university, or in schools with a higher secondary facility affiliated with the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education or any central board. Students choose from one of three streams, namely liberal arts, commerce or science. Upon completing the required coursework, students may enroll in general or professional degree programs. Tertiary level[edit]

Armed Forces Medical College, Pune, was one of the institutions established after the Indian independence movement

Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has 24 universities with a turnout of 160,000 Graduates every year.[173][174] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has played a pioneering role in the development of the modern education system in India. The University of Mumbai, is the largest university in the world in terms of the number of graduates and has 141 affiliated colleges.[175] According to prominent national rankings, 5 to 7 Maharashtra
Maharashtra
colleges and universities are ranked among the top 20 in India.[176][177][178] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is also home to such notable autonomous institutes as Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Technological University, Institute of Chemical Technology, Homi Bhabha National Institute, Walchand College of Engineering, Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology Nagpur
Nagpur
(VNIT) and Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute
Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute
(VJTI).[179] Most of these autonomous institutes are ranked the highest in India
India
and have very competitive entry requirements. The University of Pune
Pune
(now Savitribai Phule Pune
Pune
University), the National Defence Academy, Film and Television Institute of India, Armed Forces Medical College and National Chemical Laboratory
National Chemical Laboratory
were established in Pune
Pune
soon after the Indian independence in 1947. Mumbai
Mumbai
has an IIT and Nagpur
Nagpur
has IIM and AIIMS Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has hundreds of other private colleges and universities, including many religious and special-purpose institutions. Most of the private colleges were set up in the last thirty years after the State Government of Vasantdada Patil
Vasantdada Patil
liberalised the Education Sector in 1982.[180] Politicians and leaders involved in the huge cooperative movement in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
were instrumental in setting up the private institutes[181][182] There are also local community colleges with generally more open admission policies, shorter academic programs, and lower tuition[citation needed].

Panjabrao Deshmukh Krishi Vidyapeeth (Agricultural university) at Akola

The state also has four agricultural universities namely Vasantrao Naik Marathwada
Marathwada
Agricultural University, Mahatma Phule Krishi Vidyapeeth, Dr. Panjabrao Deshmukh Krishi Vidyapeeth
Dr. Panjabrao Deshmukh Krishi Vidyapeeth
and Dr. Balasaheb Sawant Konkan
Konkan
Krishi Vidyapeeth,[183] besides these, there are other regional universities like Sant Gadge Baba Amravati
Amravati
University, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathwada
Marathwada
University, North Maharashtra University, Shivaji University, Swami Ramanand Teerth Marathwada University and Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur
Nagpur
University, all well established and nationally renowned, to cover the educational needs at the district levels of the state. Apart from this, there are a number of deemed universities in Maharashtra: the Symbiosis International University, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Tilak Maharashtra
Maharashtra
University and Tata Institute of Social Sciences.[184] Vocational Training[edit] The state has many Post-secondary school Industrial training institutes (ITI) run by the government and private trusts that offer vocational training in numerous trades such as construction, plumbing, welding, automobile mechanic etc. Successful candidates receive the National Trade Certificate.[185] Infrastructure[edit] Healthcare[edit] In 2011, the health care system in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
consisted of 363 rural government hospitals,[186] 23 district hospitals (with 7,561 beds), 4 general hospitals (with 714 beds) mostly under the Maharashtra Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, and 380 private medical establishments; these establishments provide the state with more than 30,000 hospital beds.[187] It is the first state in India
India
to have nine women's hospitals serving 1,365 beds.[187] The state also has significant number of medical practitioners who hold the Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery qualifications. These practitioners primarily use the traditional Indian therapy of Ayurveda
Ayurveda
but can use modern western medicine as well.[188] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has a life expectancy at birth of 67.2 years in 2011, ranking it third among 29 Indian states.[189] The total fertility rate of the state is 1.9.[190] The Infant mortality
Infant mortality
rate is 28 and the maternal mortality ratio is 104 (2012–2013), which are lower than the national averages.[191][192] Public health services are governed by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), through various departments. The Ministry is divided into two departments: the Public Health Department, which includes family welfare and medical relief, and the Department of Medical Education and Drugs.[193][194] In Maharashtra, health insurance includes any program that helps pay for medical expenses, whether through privately purchased insurance, social insurance or a social welfare program funded by the government.[195] In a more technical sense, the term is used to describe any form of insurance that provides protection against the costs of medical services.[196] This usage includes private insurance and social insurance programs such as National Health Mission, which pools resources and spreads the financial risk associated with major medical expenses across the entire population to protect everyone, as well as social welfare programs such as National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) and the Health Insurance Program, which provide assistance to people who cannot afford health coverage.[195][196][197] Energy[edit]

Chandrapur
Chandrapur
Super Thermal Power Station, the state's power production source

Although its population makes Maharashtra
Maharashtra
one of the country's largest energy users,[198][199] conservation mandates, mild weather in the largest population centres and strong environmental movements have kept its per capita energy use to one of the smallest of any Indian state.[200] The high electricity demand of the state constitutes 13% of the total installed electricity generation capacity in India, which is mainly from fossil fuels such as coal and natural gas.[201] Mahavitaran is responsible for distribution of electricity throughout the state by buying power from Mahanirmiti, captive power plants, other state electricity boards and private sector power generation companies.[200] As of 2012, Maharashtra
Maharashtra
was the largest power generating state in India, with installed electricity generation capacity of 26,838 MW.[199] The state forms a major constituent of the western grid of India, which now comes under the North, East, West and North Eastern (NEWNE) grids of India.[198] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Power Generation Company (MAHAGENCO) operates thermal power plants.[202] In addition to the state government-owned power generation plants, there are privately owned power generation plants that transmit power through the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
State Electricity Transmission Company, which is responsible for transmission of electricity in the state.[203] Culture[edit] Main articles: Culture of Maharashtra
Culture of Maharashtra
and List of State Protected Monuments in Maharashtra Further information: Cultural activities of Maharashtra Cuisine[edit] Main article: Maharashtrian cuisine

A typical simple Maharashtrian meal with bhaaji, bhakari, raw onion and pickle

Pav Bhaji,a popular dish from Maharashtra

Maharashtra
Maharashtra
cuisine covers a range from mild to very spicy dishes. Wheat, rice, jowar, bajri, vegetables, lentils and fruit form staple food of the Maharashtrian diet. Some of the popular traditional dishes include puran poli, ukdiche modak, and batata wada. Pav Bhaji
Pav Bhaji
and Vada pav are dishes that became very popular in the last fifty years.[204] Meals (mainly lunch and dinner) are served on a plate called thali. Each food item served on the thali has a specific place. In some households, meals begin with a thanksgiving offering of food (Naivedya) to the household Gods. Maharashtrian cuisine
Maharashtrian cuisine
has many regional varieties including Malvani (Konkani) and Varadhi.[205] Though quite different, both use a lot of seafood and coconut.[206] The staple foods of the Konkani
Konkani
people are rice and fish The bhaajis are vegetable dishes made with a particular vegetable or a combination. They require the use of goda (sweet) masala, essentially consisting of some combination of onion, garlic, ginger, red chilli powder, green chillies and mustard.[204] Depending on the caste or specific religious tradition of a family, onion and garlic may not be used in cooking.[205] A particular variant of bhaaji is the rassa or curry.[207] Vegetarians prepare rassa or curry of potatoes and or cauliflower with tomatoes or fresh coconut kernel and plenty of water to produce a soup-like preparation rather than bhaaji. Varan is nothing but plain dal, a common Indian lentil stew. Aamti is variant of the curry, typically consisting of a lentil (tur) stock, flavoured with goda masala, tamarind or amshul, and jaggery (gul).[204] Among seafood, the most popular fish is bombil or the Bombay duck.[206] All non-vegetarian and vegetarian dishes are eaten with boiled rice, chapatis or with bhakris, made of jowar, bajra or rice flours. Special
Special
rice puris called vada and amboli, which is a pancake made of fermented rice, urad dal, and semolina, are also eaten as a part of the main meal.[205] Attire[edit]

Members of Rotary club in Nagpur
Nagpur
wearing the traditional Maharashtrian lugade or (nauwari), nine yard sari

Traditionally, Marathi women commonly wore the sari, often distinctly designed according to local cultural customs.[208] Most middle aged and young women in urban Maharashtra
Maharashtra
dress in western outfits such as skirts and trousers or shalwar kameez with the traditionally nauvari or nine-yard lugade,[209] disappearing from the markets due to a lack of demand.[210] Older women wear the five-yard sari. In urban areas, the five-yard sari, especially the Paithani, is worn by younger women for special occasions such as marriages and religious ceremonies.[211] Among men, western dressing has greater acceptance. Men also wear traditional costumes such as the dhoti and pheta[212] on cultural occasions. The Gandhi cap
Gandhi cap
is the popular headgear among older men in rural Maharashtra.[208][213][214] Women wear traditional jewelleries derived from Marathas and Peshwas
Peshwas
dynasties. Kolhapuri saaj, a special type of necklace, is also worn by Marathi women.[208] In urban areas, many women and men wear western attire.[214] Music and dance[edit]

Lavani
Lavani
performance

Maharashtrian artists have made major contributions to Indian Classical music. Its vibrant folk form includes Powada, Bharuds and Gondhals.[215] Cities like Kolhapur
Kolhapur
and Pune
Pune
have been playing a major role in preservation of music like Bhavageet and Natya Sangeet, which are inherited from Indian classical music. The songs from Hindi
Hindi
films and Marathi films are popular in urban areas. Marathi dance forms draw from folk traditions. Lavani
Lavani
is popular form of dance in the state. The Bhajan, Kirtan and Abhangas of the Varkari sect (Vaishanav Devotees) have a long history and are part of their daily rituals.[216][217] Koli dance (as called 'Koligeete') is among the most popular dances of Maharashtra. As the name suggests, it is related to the fisher folk of Maharashtra, who are called Kolis. Popular for their unique identity and liveliness, their dances represent their occupation. This type of dance is represented by both men and women. While dancing, they are divided into groups of two. These fishermen display the movements of waves and casting of the nets during their koli dance performances.,[218][219] Literature[edit]

P L Deshpande (in centre),one of the most popular authors in Marathi language

Maharashtra’s regional literature is about lives and circumstances of Marathi people
Marathi people
in specific parts of the state. The Marathi language, which boasts a rich literary heritage, is written in the Devanagari
Devanagari
script.[220] The earliest instances of Marathi literature is by Sant Dnyaneshwar
Dnyaneshwar
with his Bhawarthadeepika
Bhawarthadeepika
(popularly known as Dnyaneshwari). The compositions, written in the 13th century, are spiritually inclined. Other compositions are by Bhakti
Bhakti
saints such as Tukaram, Eknath, Namdev, Sant Sena Maharaj Ramdas, and Gora Kumbhar.[221] Their compositions are mostly in poetic form, which are called Abhang. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has a long tradition in spiritual literature, evidenced by the Amrutanubhav, Bhavarth Deepika, Bhagavata Purana, Eknathi Bhagwat and Bhavarth Ramayan.[222] 19th century Marathi literature
Marathi literature
includes the works of authors such as Balshastri Jambhekar, Gopal Ganesh Agarkar, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Gopal Hari Deshmukh, Mahadev Govind Ranade, Jyotirao Phule, Dr.B.R.Ambedkar, Vinayak Damodar Sawarkar, Ram Ganesh Gadkari, Tryambak Bapuji Thombre, Hari Narayan Apte, Vishnushastri Chiplunkar and Keshavsuta. 20th century notable writers include Mahadevshastri Joshi, Kusumagraj, Pu La Deshpande, Va Pu Kale, Vyankatesh Digambar Madgulkar, Vishnu Sakharam Khandekar, Prahlad Keshav Atre, B. S. Mardhekar, Sane Guruji, Vinoba Bhave, Chintamani Tryambak Khanolkar, Bahinabai Chaudhari and Laxmanshastri Joshi. Vishwas Patil, Ranjit Desai, Shivaji Sawant, Narayan Surve, Vinda Karandikar, Shanta Shelke, Durga Bhagwat, Suresh Bhat, Ratnakar Matkari, Varjesh Solanki, Manya Joshi, Hemant Divate, Mangesh Narayanrao Kale, Avinash Dharmadhikari
Avinash Dharmadhikari
, Bhalchandra Nemade , Narendra Jadhav
Narendra Jadhav
and Saleel Wagh are some of the more recent authors. As well in Regional Languages are spoken in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
as Kokani, Koli, Malvani, Varhadi, Konkani
Konkani
etc. Films[edit] Main articles: Bollywood
Bollywood
and Marathi cinema Maharashtra
Maharashtra
is a prominent location for the Indian entertainment industry, with many films, television series, books, and other media being set there.[223] Mainstream Hindi
Hindi
films are popular in Maharashtra, especially in urban areas. Mumbai
Mumbai
is the largest centre for film and television production and a third of all Indian films are produced in the state. Multimillion-dollar Bollywood
Bollywood
productions, with the most expensive costing up to ₹1.5 billion (US$23 million), are filmed there.[224] The Marathi film
Marathi film
industry, previously located in Kolhapur, has spread throughout Mumbai. Well known for its art films, the early Marathi film
Marathi film
industry included acclaimed directors such as Dadasaheb Phalke, and V. Shantaram. Dada Kondke is the most prominent name in Marathi film. The Dadasaheb Phalke
Dadasaheb Phalke
Award is India's highest award in cinema, given annually by the Government of India
India
for lifetime contribution to Indian cinema.[225] Theatre[edit] Main article: Marathi theatre

Playwright Vijay Tendulkar

Modern Theatre in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
can trace its origins to the British colonial era in the middle of the 19th century. It is modelled mainly after the western tradition but also includes forms like Sangeet Natak (Musical drama). In recent decades, Marathi Tamasha has been also been incorporated in some experimental plays.[226] Today, theatre continues to have a marked presence in Mumbai
Mumbai
and Pune
Pune
with an educated loyal audience base, when most theatre in other parts of India
India
have had tough time facing the onslaught of cinema and television. Its repertoire ranges from humorous social plays, farces, historical plays, musical, to experimental plays and serious drama. Marathi Playwrights such as Vijay Tendulkar, P. L. Deshpande, Mahesh Elkunchwar and Satish Alekar
Satish Alekar
have influenced theatre throughout India.[227] Besides Marathi theatre, Maharashtra
Maharashtra
and particularly, Mumbai, has had a long tradition of theatre in other languages such as Gujarati, Hindi
Hindi
and English.[228] Media[edit]

Times of India
India
building in Mumbai

More than 200 newspapers and 350 consumer magazines have an office in this state and the book-publishing industry employs about 250,000 people. Sakal
Sakal
published from Pune
Pune
and other major Maharashtrian cities, has the largest circulation for Marathi Newspaper in Maharastra as on Dec, 2016.[229] Other major Marathi newspapers are Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Times, Loksatta, Nava Kaal, Pudhari, and Lokmat. Tarun Bharat and Kesari, two newspapers that once were quite influential during the colonial and the post-independence era have stopped the print edition and are now published only digitally. Popular Marathi language magazines are Saptahik Sakaal, Grihashobhika, Lokrajya, Lokprabha and Chitralekha.[230] Major English language newspapers which are published and sold in large numbers are Daily News & Analysis, The Times of India, Hindustan Times, The Indian Express, Mumbai
Mumbai
Mirror, Asian Age, MiD-DAY
MiD-DAY
and The Free Press Journal. Some prominent financial dailies like The Economic Times, Mint, Business Standard and The Financial Express are widely circulated.[231] Vernacular newspapers such as those in Hindi, Kannada, Gujarati and Urdu
Urdu
are also read by a select readership. The television industry developed in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
and is a significant employer in the state's economy.[232] Numerous Indian and international television channels can be watched in Maharashtra through one of the Pay TV companies or the local cable television provider. The four major India
India
broadcast networks are all headquartered in Maharashtra: The Times, STAR India, CNN-IBN
CNN-IBN
and ZEEL. Doordarshan
Doordarshan
is the state-owned television broadcaster and provides two free terrestrial channels. Multi system operators provide a mix of Marathi, Bengali, Nepali, Hindi, English and international channels via cable. The wide range of cable channels available includes sports channels like ESPN, Star Sports, National entertainment channels like Colors, Sony, Zee TV
Zee TV
and Star Plus, business news channels like CNBC Awaaz, Zee Business, ET Now and Bloomberg UTV. Marathi 24-hour television news channels include ABP Majha, IBN-Lokmat, Zee 24 Taas, TV9 Maharashtra, ETV Marathi, TV9 Maharashtra and Jai Maharashtra. All India
India
Radio is a public radio station. Private FM stations are available in all major cities. Vodafone, Airtel, BSNL, Reliance Communications, Aircel, MTS India, Tata Indicom, Idea Cellular
Idea Cellular
and Tata DoCoMo are available cellular phone operators. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has the highest share of the internet market at 18.8% of total households internet users in India.[233] Broadband internet is available in all towns, villages and cities, provided by the state-run MTNL and BSNL and by other private companies.[234] Dial-up access
Dial-up access
is provided throughout the state by BSNL
BSNL
and other providers. Sports[edit] Main article: Sports in Maharashtra The most popular sports in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
are Kabaddi
Kabaddi
and Cricket.

Children playing cricket in Mumbai

A mallakhamba team of the Indian Army's Bombay Sappers
Bombay Sappers
performs on the pole.

As in the rest of India, cricket is popular in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
and is played on grounds and in streets throughout the state. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has various domestic level franchise-based leagues for hockey, chess, tennis and badminton. The state is home to top national football clubs such as Mumbai
Mumbai
Tigers
Tigers
F.C., Kenkre F.C., Bengal Mumbai
Mumbai
FC and Air India
India
FC.[235] Adventure sports such as paragliding, water sports, rock climbing, backpacking, mountaineering and scuba diving are also popular in the state.[236] Other notable sports played in the state include Kho kho, fencing, archery and shooting. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has an Indian Premier League
Indian Premier League
franchise known as the Mumbai Indians and Rising Pune
Pune
Supergiants; the Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Cricket Association (MCA), regulates cricket in state. Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has three domestic cricket teams: the Mumbai
Mumbai
cricket team, Maharashtra
Maharashtra
cricket team and Vidarbha
Vidarbha
cricket team. Wankhede Stadium, which has a capacity of 45,000, hosted the final match of the 2011 Cricket
Cricket
World Cup.[237][238] It is home to the Mumbai
Mumbai
Indians and Mumbai
Mumbai
cricket team.[238] Maharashtra football team represents the state in competition for the Santosh Trophy. Mumbai
Mumbai
District Football Association (MDFA) is the organisation responsible for Association football in and around Mumbai. The state has two club franchises playing in Elite Football League of India.[239] Mumbai
Mumbai
Gladiators and Pune
Pune
Marathas[240] are teams based in Mumbai
Mumbai
and Pune
Pune
respectively.[241] Mumbai
Mumbai
and Pune
Pune
hold derby races at the Mahalaxmi Racecourse
Mahalaxmi Racecourse
and Pune Race Course respectively.[242][243] The wrestling championship Hind Kesari is widely popular in the rural regions and is affiliated with the All India
India
Amateur Wrestling Federation (AIAWF).[244] Maharashtra Chess
Chess
Association is the apex body for the game of chess in Maharashtra.[245] Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Tennis
Tennis
League is India's first league format in tennis.[246][247] Notable athletes from Maharashtra
Maharashtra
include retired Cricket
Cricket
legends Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar
and Sunil Gavaskar
Sunil Gavaskar
who were part of the Indian national cricket team;,[248][249] Indian national cricket team
Indian national cricket team
player Rohit Sharma, Asian Games silver medalist Hiranna M. Nimal, India's first individual Olympic Medalist- wrestler Khashaba Jadhav, chess player Rohini Khadilkar, tennis player Gaurav Natekar, former hockey players Dhanraj Pillay, Viren Rasquinha and badminton players Nikhil Kanetkar and Aparna Popat.[250] Indigenous sports[edit] A number of Indian sports either originated in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
or were formalized here.These include Kabbadi,Kho kho, and Mallakhamba.In rural areas of Maharashtra,wrestling ,and bullock cart competitions take place during the annual Jatra (Carnival) of a locality. Tourism[edit] See also: Tourism in Maharashtra According to a survey,most tourists visiting places in Maharashtra
Maharashtra
are from the state.Two other states, Gujarat
Gujarat
and Andhra Pradesh
Andhra Pradesh
send the largest number of domestic visitors to Maharashtra.Foreign visitors to Maharashtra
Maharashtra
account for just 2% of the tourist.Visitors from USA, UK,Germany and UAE each form a significant percentage of foreign tourists.[251] Mumbai, the biggest and the most cosmopolitan city in India
India
attracts tourists from all over the world for its many attractions including colonial architecture,beaches, movie industry,shopping and active nightlife.Pune,called the cultural capital of Maharashtra, also attracts many visitors during the annual Ganeshotsav
Ganeshotsav
festival. The area around Aurangabad has many ancient and medieval sites including the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Ajanta and Ellora caves, the ancient fort at Devgiri/Daulatabad, and the Bibi Ka Maqbara
Bibi Ka Maqbara
in Aurangabad. The mountainous districts of Western Maharashtra
Maharashtra
are dotted with the ruins of hundreds of mountain forts from Deccan Sultanate and the Maratha
Maratha
empire eras respectively.These forts and the surrounding hills are popular with people interested in trekking, hiking and Heritage tourism related to Shivaji Maharaj..[252] The British built many hill-stations during the colonial era for government officials to escape from the heat of Indian summers.These places have been magnets for tourism for a long time.The important hill stations in Western Maharashtra
Maharashtra
are Mahabaleshwar, and Matheran.In Vidarbha
Vidarbha
region, Chikhaldara
Chikhaldara
is the hill station popular with visitors.

Khandoba
Khandoba
temple in Pune
Pune
district as the family deity of majority of Hindu Marathi people
Marathi people
attracts large number of pilgrims

Places of worship that attract pilgrims from other parts of India
India
and beyond include the Sikh Gurudwara of Hazur Sahib at Nanded
Nanded
and the shrine of Saibaba at Shirdi.The places associated with the Varkari sect such as Pandharpur, Dehu
Dehu
and Alandi
Alandi
attract pilgrims from all over Maharashtra
Maharashtra
throughout the year but particularly during religious observations at these places.[253] A new place for pilgrimage is the Statue of Ahimsa, a 108 ft idol of first Jain
Jain
tirthankara Rishabhanatha
Rishabhanatha
carved in monolithic stone consecrated at Mangi Tungi
Mangi Tungi
. It is recorded in the Guinness Book
Book
of World Records as the tallest Jain
Jain
idol in the world.[254] The Vidarbha
Vidarbha
region of Maharashtra
Maharashtra
has numerous nature reserve parks.These include,Melghat Tiger Reserve in Akola
Akola
and Amravati district, Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve in Chandrapur
Chandrapur
district[255] , Umred Karhandla Wildlife Sanctuary in Nagpur
Nagpur
district,the Nagzira
Nagzira
wild life sanctuary and Navegaon National Park
Navegaon National Park
(bird sanctuary) of Gondia District. The state Government has established Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) for systematic development and promotion of tourism in the state. MTDC has, since its inception, been involved in the development and maintenance of the various tourist locations of Maharashtra. MTDC owns and maintains resorts at all key tourist centers and having more resorts is on the plan.[256]

Nighttime skyline of Downtown Mumbai
Mumbai
at Nariman Point

Ganeshotsav
Ganeshotsav
festival in Pune

Venna Lake at Mahabaleshwar

Indian Tigers
Tigers
at Tadoba
Tadoba
Tiger reserve

See also[edit] India
India
– book

Marathi People Make In Maharashtra List of Maratha
Maratha
dynasties and states List of Marathi people Religion in Maharashtra

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