Situated on the west coast of India between 20-6' N to 24-42' N north latitude and 68-10'E to 74-28'E east longitude, Gujarat is one of India's most industrialized states in western India. Gujarat has geographical area of 196,024 sq km and accounts for 6.19 percent of the total area of the country. It is bounded by the Arabian Sea in the West, by the States of Rajasthan in the North and North-East, by Madhya Pradesh in the East and by Maharashtra in the South and South East. The State has an international boundary and has a common border with the Pakistan at the north-western fringe. The two deserts, one north of Kachchh and the other between Kachchh and the mainland Gujarat are saline wastes. Gujarat has the 'Tapti' river flowing through its southeastern part. This river meets the Arabian Sea at Surat. Higher up, is the 'Narmada' River, which carries large quantities of alluvium down from Madhya Pradesh. It too, like the Tapti flows into the Gulf of Cambay (Khambhat). The 'Sabarmati' river, flowing past Ahmedabad and the 'Mahi' river, both empty out into the gulf of Khambhat. Gujarat state came into existence as a separate State on 1st May 1960, when the ‘Bombay’ State was divided into Maharashtra and Gujarat.. The state capital is Gandhinagar. Gujarat State at present comprises of 25 districts, sub-divided into 226 talukas, having 18618 villages and 242 towns. The State of Gujarat, located on the West Coast of India, has 1600 km. long coastline, representing a third of the nation's water front. The State has 40 minor and intermediate ports geographically dispersed across South Gujarat (13 ports), Saurashtra (23 ports) and Kachchh region (4 ports). One Major port of Kandla, is under the administrative control of the Central Government. The number of commercial bank offices in the State was 3661 at the end of March, 2003. It is one of India's wealthiest states, supporting modern industrial complexes as well as thriving village handicrafts. It is a flourishing state and even its villages have hidden talents in artisanship. Though Gujarat has relatively little forest cover left (9.61% forest cover), it still supports more than 40 species of animals-including the rare Asiatic Lion, wild ass and blackbuck. A devastating earthquake hit parts of Gujarat on January 26, 2001 and has caused considerable loss of life and property. A few of the cities have been been reduced to rubble, especially in the Kachchh region. Quite a few monuments have also suffered damage. Gujrat, the home state of Mahatma Gandhi, is rich in crafts, history and natural beauty. With just 5 per cent of the India’s total population and 6 per cent of geographical area, Gujarat contributes to 16 per cent of the country’s total investment, 10 per cent of expenditure, 16 per cent of exports and 30 per cent of stock market capitalization. The state’s annual growth rate has been 10 to 2 per cent for the last five years.
The population was 5.06 crores at the 2001 census, giving it an average density of 238 persons per sq km. In 2001, 69.97 percent (excluding children in the age group 0-6 years) of the population was literate. About 37.67 per cent population of Gujarat resides in urban areas (Excluding earthquake affected areas). Out of the total population of 483.87 lakh in the state (excluding the earthquake affected areas), 203.7 lakh (42.10 per cent) were workers and 280.2 lakh (57.90 per cent) were non-workers. The geographic diversity and strategic location has made Gujarat home to an incredible diversity of people. People have developed lifestyles to suit their surroundings. Gujarat is a melting pot of several civilizations resulting in a vibrant culture and a rich heritage. Gujarat is home to several architectural marvels, witnesses of its glorious history and pilgrim centres for many faiths. It is also the land of several mythological & historical figures like the legendary Krishna and Mahatma Gandhi the apostle of non-violence. Inspite of the regional cultural diversities, there is an inherent unity of being a part of the state of Gujarat. As Gujrat is a heavily industrialized state of India, it invites lots of outsider residents mostly from North India, Bihar,and South India. Thousands of non - Gujrati workers live in Gujrat. Gujarati people are very well known for their travelling nature.The economic development of a place depends not only on the natural resources of the place but also on the number and type of people who live there. This state has people with natural artistic talents. You can find workers in the villages who are master artisans. The men in Gujarat (mostly rural) wear turbans, pleated jackets which have long sleeves and high waists ; and jodhpurs which are trousers with long tight drainpipe legs and baggy bottoms or seats. Men as well as women of Gujarat are fond of jewellery and even the hawkers and people below the poverty line love to buy gold if they can. The women too wear colorful 'Ghagharas' and ‘Cholis’, which are backless blouses and are colorfully embroidered. The cholis are called by different names but the most common is 'Kanjeri'. Gujarat has an arid and desert type of climate and yet it is one of India’s' most culturally sound states. It is the will and aspirations of the people of Gujarat which makes it an economically rich place. Human skill has turned this state into a place of valuable resources.
Gujarat has two official languages: Gujarati, which is derived from Sanskrit, and Hindi. Gujarat has a strong Jain Community influence over it. The Jains are hard working, energetic, well placed people.
The major food crops in the State are Rice, Wheat, Jowar, Bajra, Maize, Tur, Gram, Groundnut while major non food crops are Cotton, Tobacco. Gujarat has an agricultural economy; the total crop area amounts to more than one-half of the total land area.
Animal Husbandry and Dairying have played a vital role in the rural economy of Gujarat. Dairy farming, primarily concerned with milk production, functions on a cooperative basis and has more than a million members. Gujrat is the largest producer of milk in India. The ‘Amul’ products are well known all over India. Among livestock raised are buffalo and other cattle, sheep, and goats. As per the results of livestock census 1997, there were 209.70 lakh livestock in Gujarat State. As per the estimates of the survey of major livestock products, during the year 2002-03 the production of milk, eggs and wool was of 6.09 million tonnes, 385 million eggs and 2.71 million kg. respectively. The state is the main producer of tobacco, cotton, and groundnut in the country. Gujarat also contributes inputs to industries like textiles, oil and soap.
One of India's most industrialized states, Gujarat maintains a variety of industries, the principal ones being general and electrical engineering and the manufacture of textiles, vegetable oils, chemicals, soda ash, and cement. New industries include the production of fertilizers and petrochemicals. Major resources produced by the state include cotton, peanuts, dates, sugarcane, and petrol. The state is rich in calcite, gypsum, manganese, lignite, bauxite, limestone, agate, feldspar and quartz sand and successful mining of these minerals is done in their specified areas. Gujarat produces about 90% of India’s required amount of Soda Ash and gives the country about 66% of its national requirement of salt. It is one of India's most prosperous states, having a per-capita GDP significantly above India's average. Kalol Khambat and Ankaleshwar are today known for their oil and natural gas production. ‘Dhuranan’ has a thermal power station, which uses coal, oil and gas. The Tarapur nuclear station in Maharashtra supplies the remaining power. Also on the Gulf of Khambat, 50 kilometers southeast of Bhavnagar , is the Alang Ship Recycling Yard (the world's largest). General Motors produces the ‘Astra’ car near Vadodara. Jalalpur is a large town of Gujrat, where several small and large textile industrial unit have been established. Surat, a city by the Gulf of Khambat , is hub of global diamond trade.
|Gujrat a glance :
|Area|| 1,96,024 sq km|
|Population||483.87 lakh |
|Maximum Temperature ||42°C|
| Languages||Gujarati, Hindi, English|
|Urbanization Ration||37.67 %|
| Best Time to Visit||October to March|
| Literacy Rate||69.97 percent |
| Domestic Airports||10 (Ahmedabad, Bhavnagar, Bhuj, Jamnagar, Kandla, Keshod, Porbandar, Rajkot, Surat, Vadodara)|
| International Airports||1 (Ahmedabad)|
| Cities linked||Bangalore, Calcutta, Delhi, Madras, Mumbai, and Vadodara|
| Road length ||68,900 km|
|National highway length||1,572 km|
|Industrial zones & parks ||263|
|Export processing zones ||1|
|State-identified priority sectors||Ancillary Development, Electronics, Garments, Gems and Jewellery, Handlooms, Leather|
- Leader in various industrial sectors -, Chemicals, Petrochemicals, Drugs & Pharmaceuticals, Dairy, Cement & Ceramics, Textiles, Engineering and Gems & Jewellery.
- Gujarat’s State Domestic Product (SDP) rising at an average growth rate of 12.4% per annum in real terms (from 1994-2002).
- Gujarat achieved as much as 35% of augmentation in its power generation capacity during the period 1995-96 and 2000-2001.
- Three LNG terminals to come up.
- Gas grid system in operation.
- Gujarat in fact is one of the first few states in India to have encouraged private sector investment in the infrastructure.
- Gujarat accounts for almost 21% share in the export basket of India.
- Longest coastline of 1600 kms, dotted with 41 ports, 1 major, 11 intermediate and 29 minor ports.
- Country’s first private sector ports, Pipavav and Mundra, are already in operation. In addition, the liquid cargo(chemicals) handling port at Dahej is also set up in joint sector and made operational.
- Excellent road network - exceeding 74000 kms. The first phase Ahmedabad-Nadiad- of the Expressway in Gujarat now open for transportation. The total road length available per 100 sq.km was 37.77 km in 2003.
- The total no. of telephones per 100 population in the State was 5.89 in 2003.
- The total no. of vehicles registered in the State were 65.08 lakh and vehicle density i.e. no. of vehicles per sq.km. was 33 in 2003.
- Highest number of Airports in India - 11 including an international airport in Ahmedabad.
- An extensive rail network connecting all major centers in the state.
- Largest producer of Salt and Soda Ash in the country.
- Largest grass-root Petroleum Refinery in the world operational at Jamnagar.
- Network of quality educational institutions.
- Business-friendly environment and rich heritage of entrepreneurial skill.
Districts of Gujrat
Amreli , Anand , Nadiad (Kheda) , Banaskatha (Palanpur) , Bharuch , Bhavnagar , Dahod , Dang (Ahava) , Gandhinagar , Jamnagar , Junagadh , Kutchh , Mehsana , Navsari , Panchmahal(Godhara) , Patan , Porbandar , Rajkot , Narmada (Rajpipla) , Sabarkantha (Himmat Nagar) , Surat , Surendra Nagar , Vadodara , Valsad
Major Cities having population over 100000
Ahmedabad , Jamnagar , Rajkot , Surendranagar , Bhavnagar , Junagadh , Porbandar , Gandhinagar , Nadiad , Anand , Vadodara , Broach , Surat , Navsari , Gandhidham
How to reach |
Gujarat has 10 domestic airports apart from an international airport at Ahmedabad. Most of the domestic airlines operate out of Ahmedabad connecting it to rest of the country.
Gujarat has a good railway network that not only connects the state internally but connects the state to other places in India also.
Gujarat has a better road network than most of the other Indian states and they are in a fairly good condition. The Gujarat State Transport Corporation and private operators operate regular buses to all the major destinations of the state from most of the larger cities.
Tourist Information Offices in Gujarat
Ahmedabad : H.K.House, Off Ashram Road, Ahmedabad - 380009 Ph. 449683, 449172
1/847, Athugar Street, Nanpura, Surat - 395001 ,Ph.26586
Bhavnagar House, Jawahar Road, (Behind State Bank of Saurashtra), Rajkot - 360001, Ph.31616
Narnada Bhavan, C-Block, Indira Avenue, Vadodara - 390001, Ph.540797, 65088
New Delhi :
A/6, State Emporia Building, Baba Kharak Singh Marg, New Delhi - 110001, Ph.352107
Dhanraj Mahal, Apollo Bunder, Ph.2024925 Mumbai - 400039, Telex : 011-2434 GUJI-IN
Mount Chambers, 2nd Floor, 758, Anna Salai, Chennai - 600002, Ph.8251172