The majority of the people live on agriculture. Rice, wheat, maize, jowar, bajra and pulses are the main food crops of the state. Principal cash crops are ground nut, tobacco, cotton and sugar cane. Besides these, the state produces mango, banana, orange, grapes and cashew nuts. About 25% of the state constitutes forest area of the total land.
Industry has a big role in the devilment and progress of the state. It has large deposits of bauxite, coal, manganese ore, iron ore and limestone. Maharashtra has a number of large industries like textiles, ginning and pressing, silk, rayon, synthetic fabrics and vegetable products. Nasik, Aurangabad, Nagpur, Roha, Tarapur and Ahmedabad are now industrial centers. The state also produces sugar. The major chemical industries in the state are nitrogenous fertilizers, superphosophates, petrochemical, drugs and Pharmaceutical and photography. The state also has marine industries and fish processing units. Mumbai is rightly called the Hollywood of the east. More than 50% of the feature films in India are produced in the 12 studios here. Mumbai is also well known for its theatres. It has a number of auditoriums to stage shows regularly.
It leads in sophisticated electronic equipment. Maharashtra has major ports like Mumbai and Nhave Shera ports, besides 50 minor ports.
The state has 24 air fields. Out of these, 17 are under the control of the state government, 4 are under the AAI and 3 are under the Defence Ministry.
Museums in Mumbai
Prince of Wales, Gandhi Memorial, Jahangir museum of modern art, Victoria and Albert Museum, Nehru Science Museum. Central Museum in Nagpur, Raja Kelkar Museum in Pune, Mararatha History Museum, Bharat Ithasa Samsodhak Mandal museum.
The history of this state is very ancient. We can see its references in the puranas also. It is mentioned as Vidharbha Kingdom. Lord Krishna’s wife Rukmani, Aja’s wife Indumathi and Raja Nala’s wife Dayamanti hailed hailed from royal families of Vidarbha. The earliest account tells us that the Satavahanas founded the state of Maharashtra. There is a lot of literature, inscriptions and archaeological evidences for us. They were followed by Vakatas, great patrons of art, learning and religion. They left their imprint in the form of Ajanta caves. The region passed in to the hands of many thereafter the Kalachuris, the Chalukyas, the Rashtrakutas, the Yadavas and the Muslim rulers- Bahmani. It was left to the great Maratha warrior Shivaji to unite the various entities. In his time Maratha became a powerful nation. Shivaji built more than 350 forts in accessible remote interiors of the mountains. His aim was to unite the whole of India under the banner of the Maratha Kingdom. But Marathas could not keep his victories for ever. They were defeated at Panipat at the hands of Ahmed Shah Abadli and finally by the Britishers. After the defeat, Maharashtra became a part of the Bombay Presidency till India achieved independence in 1947. It was on May 1, 1960 that the present state of Maharashtra was formed on the basis of the language of the region.
Maharashtra is the third largest state in India in the area wise. It is triangular in shape. In the past Maharshtra had been the home of the Buddhist, Jain and Hindu religions flourishing side by side. And they left their marks in mountain caves of Vindhya and Western Ghjats. Over 80% of the cave temples of India lie in the state of Maharashtra. Prominent among them are the Buddhist caves in Ajanta and the Hindu caves in the Ellora. A number of relics of the Stone Age can also be found. Of the 12 Jyothir lingas, 5 can be found in Maharashtra. There are 4 national parks and 5 sanctuaries. The state has too many pilgrim centers. Of the four cities where the massive Kumbha Mela is held, one is Nasik and that is in the state. Nasik has also been mentioned in the various episodes of the Ramayana and the Indian mythology.
Maharashtra has Madhya Pradesh in its north, Chhattisgarh to its east, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Goa to the south, Arabian Sea to the west, Daman and Gujarat to its north west.
The area of this land about 307317 sq.km.
The density of this area is about 314 per sq.km.
The capital of this state is Mumbai.
The language spoken by the people are Marathi.
Khandala is about 625metre high.
Mahabaleshwar is about 1372metre high.
Matheran is about 803metre high.
Panhala is about the height of 813 metres.
How to reach
Mumbai is connected with all the major international airlines. All major cities of the world are connected with it. Domestic flights also touch Mumbai.
All major cities are linked with it by rail.
It is connected with all the major cities of India.
Regular bus services are available to Goa, Aurangabad, Bangalore, Belgaum, Hyderabad, Mangalore, Udaipur and many other places from Mumbai.
Important places to visit in Maharashtra
Gateway of India
It was built to commemorate the visit of King George V to India in 1911. It was opened financially in 1924. Nearby is the village of Kolis- the original tribes of fishermen. It is now a leading shopping centre.
Hanging gardens, Kamla Nehru Park
These gardens are located at the low peak of Malabar Hills on three water tanks. From here sunset is very enchanting and one gets a panoramic view of the Marine Drive. Kamala Nehru Park is on the slopes of Malabar Hills. It is a children’s park. It has a large Old Lady’s shoe as high as a 2- storey building.
The Queen’s Necklace
The picturesque Marine Drive is called so. Its best view can be had from the Hanging Gardens of Malabar Hills. The lights are an attraction after sunset.
Prince of Wales Museum
Near Flora Fountain, this museum’s fountain was laid by George V, then the Prince of Wales.
It is about 30 km from the city. This large beach is a long sandy one where large crowds gather and there are food stalls, merry go rounds and tumble boxes to entertain. The sea is relatively safe here. There are bhelpuri vendors and other way side entertainments.
This island is about 1 hour drive by launch from the Gateway of India. There is a lord Shiva temple of the 7th century. It is an attraction for tourists. The cave temples were built cutting out and solid rocks. The influence of Jainism and Buddhism is also here. A festival is held here at February end.
Haji Ali Tomb and Mosque
We have to reach to this White tomb mosque of the Afghan Fakir who meditated here.
During 1917-1934 whenever Gandhiji came here he stayed in Mumbai. A lot of pictures, books and articles used by him are exhibited and there is a research centre. Cards, books, slides are sold as mementos.
It is about 42 km from the north of the city. It was built between the 2nd and 9th century AD. There are 109 Buddhist caves. There is a ship running between Mumbai and Goa daily except the monsoon months.
Mumbai celebrates the birth of Lord Krishna during the months of July- August. Young men and boys from human pyramids and break pots of curds hung up high between buildings.
Coconut Day is celebrated during the August months, When the angry monsoon seas are propitiated by devotees throwing coconut into the waters.
It is celebrated during the months of August-September. The massive figures of Ganesh are worshipped and immersed in the sea water on the last day of this festival.
Mount Mary’s Feast is celebrated at St. Mary’s Church, Bandra. There is also a fair held at this time.
During Dussehra we can see lot of Gujarati women dancing in many auditortia. Ramlila celebrations are held at Chowpathy beach.
Diwali, the festival of lights, when the business community celebrates its new year and opens new account books.