Uttar Pradesh

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Map of Uttar Pradesh (Source: India-WRIS)



The history of this state is very old. It is the birthplace of Lord Rama and Krishna. It is recognised in the later Vedic age as Brahmarshi Desa or Madhya Desha. Many famous ancient sages like Bharadwaja, Gautam, Yagyavalkya, Vasistha, Vishwamitra, and Valmiki appear to have flourished in this state. Many ancient sacred books were also composed here.
In sixth century B.C. two new religions, Buddhism and Jainism were associated with this state. In Sarnath, Lord Buddha preached his first sermon and died at Kushinagar. At Sarnath the great emperor Ashoka built one of his beautiful monolithic polished pillars with the 'four lions' capital on it. The Indian nation chose the four lion symbol as state emblem. Several important dynasties ruled over this state in pre-Christ era like Maurayas, Guptas, Pusyabhuti etc. Several centres like Ayodhya, Prayag, Varanasi and Mathura became the reputed centres of learning. In the medieval period the great Hindu reformer Sri Sankaracharya established one of his Ashrams in Badrinath. The slave dynasty ruler Kutubuddin Aibak established the Muslim rule over here.The Muslim regime led to a new synthesis of Hindu and Muslim culture. At that time Ramananda and his Muslim disciple Kabir, Tulsidas, Soordas and many other intellectuals contributed to the growth of Hindi and other languages. In the Mughal regime, particularly from the period of Akbar, Agra became an important place. He built the Agra Fort and his grandson Shahjahan built the famous Tajmahal, a tribute to his beloved wife Mumtazmahal. Uttar Pradesh preserved its intellectual leadership even under the British administration. The British combined Agra and Oudh into one province and called it United Provinces of Agra and Oudh. The name was shortened into United Provinces in 1935. Finally, in 1950 the India Government renamed it as Uttar Pradesh.


Uttar Pradesh (UP) is the fifth largest state according to area in India.It is bounded by Tibet region of China and partly by Nepal to its north, Bihar to its east, Madhya Pradesh to the south and southwest, Haryana to its west alongwith national capital region of Delhi and some parts of Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh to its northwest. The state can be equally divided into three parts namely the Northern Mountains (the Himalayan region and some of the foothills areas in the north), Southern hills plateau (the Vindhya mountains in the south) and the Gangetic Plain. The land of huge Gangetic Plain area is connecting the north of India to the east. Again the state can be classified into five zones in terms of economy and geography. The zones are - western zone (which is developed in terms of agriculture), eastern zone (which is not so well developed), central zone, the hills region (which may emerge as a separate state from the rest of UP) and the Bundelkhand region in the south close to Madhya Pradesh. Ganga is the major river of this state. Out of its total length 2525 km, the Ganga has as much as 1450 km of its long run in UP. The major river Yamuna, which meets Ganga and invisible Saraswati river at Prayag. The other rivers are Ramganga, Gomati, Ghagra, Gandak, and the tributaries of Yamuna like Chambal, Betwa, Sind, Ken. Most of the rivers are meet with Ganga. The rivers are perennial, snow fed and emerged from Himalayas except Gomati. The rivers are flowing west to east.The state has a tropical climate except the Himalayan region, which has a temperate climate.


Uttar Pradesh situated in the north eastern part of India is the fourth largest state and was separated in two states viz. Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh. Madhya Pradesh state in the South, Haryana, Rajasthan and Delhi in West, Nepal in the North, Uttarakhand in the North East and Bihar in the East bound Uttar Pradesh.


The climate of the state is tropical monsoon, but variations exist because of difference in altitudes. The average temperature varies in the plains from 3-4 °C in January to 43-45 °C in May and June. There are three distinct seasons - winter from October to February, summer from March to mid-June, and the rainy season from June to September. The rainfall in the plains is heaviest in the east and decreases towards the west. Floods are a recurring problem in the state, causing damage to crops, life and property.

Water Resources

Major source of surface water in the state are rivers flowing from southeast to southwest direction. Major rivers include Ganges, Yamuna, Ghagra, Gomti, Gandak, Sone and Sarda. The Ganges being too large to be tamed, no major irrigation projects have been created on its mainstream. The irrigation needs are being met by canal projects constructed early this century. In recent years, some of the northern and southern tributaries of Ganges and their minor feeder streams have been tamed, creating a few reservoirs.


  • Agriculture
  • Industry
  • Mines & Minerals


Agriculture is the major source of income of the state about 78% peoples occupation. The state was the largest producer of cereals, sugarcane, Potato and oil seeds. Uttar Pradesh is the 'sugarcane bowl' of India. Western part of Uttar Pradesh is agriculturally more developed because of better irrigation facilities. Major food crops are wheat and rice.


Sugar, Cement, Vanaspati, Cotton cloth and Cotton yarn are produced in a large scale in Uttar Pradesh. Besides these small-scale industries like Hand Knitted woolen carpets, woodcarving, brass metal industries, terracotta, etc. in various locations like Lucknow, Varanasi, Saharanpur, Firozabad, Muradabad etc. are providing a huge employment opportunities. This authority includes industrial sectors, housing sectors, group housing sectors, residential buildings, commercial assets and institutional sectors. Steps have been taken to develop other industrial areas of the state on the pattern of NOIDA and Greater NOIDA. A Export Processing Zone has been set up in Greater NOIDA. A software technology park (STPI) has also been set up in Kanpur for promotion of software export.

Mines & Minerals

Important minerals produced in this state are limestone, magnesite, coal, rock-phosphate, dolomite, silica sand, etc. Besides these some minor minerals like prophyllite and diaspore etc. are also produced. Bulk production of minor minerals is carried out under private sectors. Public sector carried out production of some major minerals like limestone, coal, magnesite, rock-phosphate, silica sand etc. Important mineral based industry of the state are cement, glass etc. Some of the mineral based industries are - Sonabhadra Cement plants, float glass project in Banda, silica-sand benefication plant in Allahabad etc. Recently uranium has been discovered in Southern Lalitpur area near Jhansi.


  • Irrigation
  • Power
  • Transport
  • Health
  • Education
  • Telecommunication


River Ganga is the backbone of the state's irrigation system. The Ganga canal had been developed by the British in nineteenth century. Major irrigation projects are Lakhwar Vyasi, eastern Ganga canal, upper Ganga canal, Maudha Dam, Sarda Sahayak, Saryucanal and Urmil dam. Besides these, a larger portion of the irrigated land is irrigated by tubewells.


The state has some oldest powerhouses One of the important among them is Uttar Pradesh State Electricity Board, established on 1st April 1959. Important power projects implemented since 1947 are: hydro electric - Mohammadpur (1950-54), Khatima (1954-56), Pathri (1955-56), Rihand (1961-62), Matatila (1964-66), Dhakrani (1965-66), Dhalipur (1965-66), Obra (1970-72), Chibre (1974-76), Kulhal (1974-76), Ramganga (1975-77), Chilla (1980-81), Khodri (1983-84), Mahari-Bhali (1984-85) and Khara (1992-93); thermal projects - Harduaganj “A” (1962-65), Panki (1967-68), Panki Extension (1976-77), Obra (1967-72), Obra Extension (1973-82), Parichha (1983-85), Anpara “A” (1985-88), and Tanda (1987-90). All projects except Harduaganj “A” are in operation.



Lucknow is the main junction of the northern network. Other important railway junctions of the state are - Agra, Kanpur, Mughalsarai, Tundla, Gorakhpur, Gonda, Allahabad, Barilly, Varanasi, Jhansi, Moradabad, Faizabad and Sitapur.


There are the airports of the state at Lucknow, Kanpur, Varanasi, Allahabad, Agra, Jhansi, Bareilly, Hindon (Ghaziabad), Gorakhpur, Sarsawa (Saharanpur), and Fursatganj (Rae-Bareli).


Uttar Pradesh attracts tourists throughout the year. The states tourist centres are classified into four important categories like-pilgrimage, magnificent scenic spots of hilly areas, place of historical importance and wild reserve forests/parks. Among the hilly places Nainital 1938 meter high above the sea level in the Kumaon (this place has since become a part of the new state of Uttaranchal) are a feast to eyes. The important pilgrimages of the state are Varanasi, Vindhyachal, Ayodhya, Chitrakoot, Prayag, Naimisharanya, Mathura, Vrindavan, Nanak Matta, Hemkund Sahib, Dewa Sharief Peerane-Kaliyar, Dargah of Sheikh Saleem Chishti in Fatehpur, Sarnath, Shravast, Kushinagar, Sankisa, Kampil,Piprahwa and Kaushambi etc. The important historical places are Agra (famous for Tajmahal, Agra Fort), Ayodhya, Sarnath, Varanasi, Lucknow, Allahabad, Mathura, Devgarh, Bithur, Prayag, Jhansi, Gorakhpur, Jaunpur, Kannauj, Mahoba and Vindhyachal. These places are rich treasures of Hindu, Islamic and Buddhist architecture and culture. Dudhwa Tiger Reserve and now Dudhwa National Park situated in town Palia, district Lakhimpur Kheri, is the main wildlife reserve in the state. It is opened for tourists from December to April.

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