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Andhra Pradesh is situated on the Deccan (south) plateau - one of the oldest geological formations in India and is sprawled over an area of 276,754 sq. km. The mighty Godavari and Krishna rivers cut their way through the plateau, forming large deltas before entering the Bay of Bengal. Andhra Pradesh, situated south of the Vindhyas, is surrounded by Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, the Bay of Bengal in the east and Tamil Nadu and Karnataka in the south and by Maharashtra in the west. It is the fifth largest state in India in area and population. With a 970 km coastline, it has the largest coastline in India. The port of Vishakapatinam caters to Madhya Pradesh and Orissa too. Andhra Pradesh was, in fact, created by combining the old princely state of Hyderabad with the Telegu speaking portions of the former state of Madras. Beautiful crafts, vibrant religious festivals, a varied cuisine and the sonorant mother tongue, Telugu, are some of the indelible impressions of this state. Kuchipudi is the famous classical dance form of Andhra Pradesh. Tribal dances contribute in equal measure to the artistic heritage of Andhra Pradesh. Tholubommalaata, a shadow puppetry theatre is a fascinating folk art of Andhra Pradesh. Architecture in Andhra Pradesh ranges from prehistoric cairns to Buddhist Setups; Hindu and Jain temples of great importance to imposing churches, secular monuments such as the Charminar of Hyderabad to some of the most beautiful mosques and Islamic tombs of India. Andhra Pradesh has a wide variety of wildlife and natural beauty. The state is home to India's largest tiger reserve, in the Nallamai forest. The Godavari river delta is famous for reptiles like the salt water crocodile, fishing cats and other exotic animals. The medieval city of Hyderabad is its capital. The state can be divided into three important regions-the coastal region, comprising of nine districts, generally called Andhra; the interior region, consisting of four districts collectively known as Rayalaseema; and the Telengana region, consisting of the capital Hyderabad and nine adjoining districts. Eight of its 23 districts have direct access to the sea. Famous beaches are Visakhapatnam Bheemunipatnam, Kakinada, Chirala, Kalingapatnam and Mypad. The legislature in A.P is unicameral, the legislative assembly has 295 seats. The A.P Legislative Council was abolished in 1985.
Language and People
Agriculture and Industry
Population of Andhra Pradesh is around 74 million and more than 70 per cent of its population live by agriculture, growing rice, jowar, bajra, ragi, small millets, cotton, sugarcane, pulses, groundnut, bananas, and tobacco. Agricultural sector accounts for 50% of the state income. The state accounts for about 55% of the country's production of castor, and about 94% of Virginia tobacco. Andhra Pradesh is irrigated by the mighty Krishna and the Godavari rivers and is aptly termed the Rice Granary of India. Nearly 23% of the state's total land mass is covered by forests. The major forest products are teak, eucalyptus, cashew, casuarinas, bamboo, soft wood, etc. Accounting for more than 98% of the country's production of barites, Andhra Pradesh has almost a monopoly on "Chrysotile asbestos". The important minerals found here include copper ore, manganese, mica, coal, and limestone. The famous Singaneri coal mines are located here. The state ranks fourth in industrial investments. Hyderabad and Vishakhapatnam are the centers for several important industries like machine tools, fertilizers, ships, drugs and pharmaceuticals, heavy electrical machinery, cement, electrical equipment, aeronautical parts, glass, etc. Telugu films have topped the list of films produced in India since 1994. The important power projects include Nagarjunasagar, Nizamsagar hydel power project, Sileru, Vijaywada, etc. With its recent foray into information technology, through the new hi-tech centre on the outskirts of Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh is promoting itself as the 'No 1 State'.
The climate is generally hot and humid. The summer temperatures vary from 20C to 40C, while in winter it is between 13C and 32C. The South-West monsoons play a major role in determining the climate of the state. The North-East monsoons are responsible for about one-third of the total rainfall in Andhra Pradesh. June to December are the monsoon months and the weather remains hot and sultry. October to February is the best season.
|Andhra Pradesh at a glance :|
|Some Facts |
- World's tallest masonry dam, Nagarjunasagar a 380 sq.km reservoir, and a 124 meter tall across the river Krishna, Andhra Pradesh's lifeline.
- World's largest one man collection, Salar Jung Museum at Hyderabad.
- World's highest broad gauge rail track, Eastern Ghats rail route from Visakhapatnam to Anantagiri is one the highest broad gauge tracks in the world.
- World's richest temple, Tirumala - Tirupati is the most venerated Vaishnavite shrine of Lord Venkateshwara and his consorts.
- South Asia's first lion safari, Nehru Zoological Park in the vicinity of Mir Alam Tank is picturesquely landscaped in its 120 hectares of rock strewn scrubland.
- Million year old caves, Borra Caves near Visakhapatnam believed to be a million years old.
- Arc of Triumph of the East, Charminar is Hyderabad's Landmark.