UTTARAKHAND (/ˌʊtəˈrɑːkʌnd/ ( listen )), officially STATE OF
UTTARAKHAND (Uttarākhaṇḍ Rājya), formerly known as UTTARANCHAL,
is a state in the northern part of
India . It is often referred to as
the Devbhumi (literally "Land of the Gods") due to many
and pilgrimage centres found throughout the state.
known for its natural beauty of the
Himalayas , the Bhabhar and the
Terai . On 9 November 2000,
Uttarakhand became the 27th state of the
India , being created from the Himalayan and adjoining
northwestern districts of
Uttar Pradesh . It borders
Tibet to the
Mahakali Zone of the Far-Western Region ,
Nepal to the
east; and the Indian states of
Uttar Pradesh to the south and Himachal
Pradesh to the west and north-west as well as
Haryana on its
south-western corner. The state is divided into two divisions, Garhwal
and Kumaon , with a total of 13 districts . The interim capital of
Dehradun , the largest city of the state, which is a
railhead. The High Court of the state is located in
Archaeological evidence supports the existence of humans in the
region since prehistoric times . The region formed a part of the Kuru
and the Panchal kingdoms (mahajanpads ) during the Vedic age of
India . Among the first major dynasties of Kumaon were the
Kunindas in the 2nd century BCE who practised an early form of
Shaivism . Ashokan edicts at
Kalsi show the early presence of Buddhism
in this region. During the medieval period, the region was
consolidated under the
Kumaon Kingdom and
Garhwal Kingdom . In 1816,
most of modern
Uttarakhand was ceded to the British as part of the
Treaty of Sugauli . Although the erstwhile hill kingdoms of Garhwal
and Kumaon were traditional rivals, the proximity of different
neighboring ethnic groups and the inseparable and complementary nature
of their geography, economy, culture, language, and traditions created
strong bonds between the two regions which further strengthened during
Uttarakhand movement for statehood in the 1990s.
The natives of the state are generally called Uttarakhandi, or more
specifically either Garhwali or Kumaoni by their region of origin.
According to the 2011 Census of
Uttarakhand has a population
of 10,086,292, making it the 19th most populous state in India.
* 1 Etymology
* 2 History
* 3 Geography
* 4 Demographics
* 4.1 Ethnic groups
* 4.2 Languages
* 4.3 Religion
* 5 Government and politics
* 6 Sub-divisions
* 7 Culture
* 8 Economy
* 9 Flora and fauna
* 10 Transport
* 11 Tourism
* 12 Education
* 13 Sports
* 13.1 Sports stadiums
* 14 See also
* 15 References
* 16 Further reading
* 17 External links
Uttarakhand's name is derived from the
Sanskrit words uttara
(उत्तर) meaning 'north', and khaṇḍa (खण्ड)
meaning 'land', altogether simply meaning 'Northern Land'. The name
finds mention in early
Hindu scriptures as the combined region of
"Kedarkhand" (present day Garhwal ) and "Manaskhand" (present day
Uttarakhand was also the ancient Puranic
(पौराणिक) term for the central stretch of the Indian
However, the region was given the name Uttaranchal by the Bharatiya
Janata Party led central government and
Uttar Pradesh state government
when they started a new round of state reorganisation in 1998. Chosen
for its allegedly less separatist connotations, the name change
generated enormous controversy among many activists for a separate
state who saw it as a political act. The name
popular in the region, even while Uttaranchal was promulgated through
In August 2006, Union Cabinet of
India assented to the demands of the
Uttaranchal state assembly and leading members of the Uttarakhand
statehood movement to rename Uttaranchal state as Uttarakhand.
Legislation to that effect was passed by the
Assembly in October 2006, and the Union Cabinet brought in the bill
in the winter session of Parliament. The bill was passed by Parliament
and signed into law by then President
A. P. J. Abdul Kalam in December
2006, and since January 1, 2007 the state has been known as
History of Uttarakhand and
The historical temples at
Jageshwar , preserved by the Archaeological
Ancient rock paintings, rock shelters, paleolithic stone tools
(hundreds of thousands of years old), and megaliths provide evidence
that the mountains of the region have been inhabited since prehistoric
times. There are also archaeological remains which show the existence
of early Vedic (c. 1500 BCE) practices in the area. The Pauravas ,
Kushanas , Kunindas , Guptas ,
Gurjara-Pratihara , Katyuris , Raikas ,
Palas , Chands , Parmars or Panwars, and the British have ruled
Uttarakhand in turns. The region was originally settled by Kol people
, an aboriginal people of the
Austro-Asiatic physical type who were
later joined by the Indo-Aryan
Khasas tribe that arrived from the
northwest by the
Vedic period (1700–1100 BCE). At that time,
Uttarakhand also served as a habitat for
Rishis and Sadhus
. It is believed that the sage
Vyasa scripted the
Mahabharata in the state. Among the first major dynasties of Garhwal
and Kumaon were the Kunindas in the 2nd century BCE who practised an
early form of
Shaivism and traded salt with Western
Tibet . It is
evident from the Ashokan edict at
Kalsi in Western Garhwal that
Buddhism made inroads in this region. Folk shamanic practices
Hindu orthodoxy also persisted here. However, Garhwal
and Kumaon were restored to nominal
Hindu rule due to the travails of
Shankaracharya and the arrival of migrants from the plains. Between
the 4th and 14th centuries, the Katyuri dynasty dominated lands of
varying extent from the Katyur (modern day Baijnath ) valley in
Kumaon. The historically significant temples at
Jageshwar are believed
to have been built by the Katyuris and later remodelled by the Chands.
Other peoples of the
Tibeto-Burman group known as
Kirata are thought
to have settled in the northern highlands as well as in pockets
throughout the region, and are believed to be ancestors of the modern
Bhotiya , Raji , Buksa , and Tharu people. Princely flag of
Kingdom of Garhwal
By the medieval period, the region was consolidated under the Garhwal
Kingdom in the west and the
Kumaon Kingdom in the east. During this
period, learning and new forms of painting (the Pahari school of art)
developed. Modern-day Garhwal was likewise unified under the rule of
Parmars who, along with many
Rajputs , also arrived from
the plains., the seat of the Kumaon Kingdom. The
Garhwal Kingdom was
re-established from a smaller region in
Tehri . It was annexed to
Amar Singh Thapa . After
Anglo-Nepalese War , it
was ceded to the British as part of the
Treaty of Sugauli .
Uttarakhand as a part of the United Province , 1903
India attained independence from the British, the Garhwal
Kingdom was merged into the state of
Uttar Pradesh , where Uttarakhand
composed the Garhwal and Kumaon Divisions. Until 1998, Uttarakhand
was the name most commonly used to refer to the region, as various
political groups, including the
Uttarakhand Kranti Dal (Uttarakhand
Revolutionary Party), began agitating for separate statehood under its
banner. Although the erstwhile hill kingdoms of Garhwal and Kumaon
were traditional rivals the inseparable and complementary nature of
their geography, economy, culture, language, and traditions created
strong bonds between the two regions. These bonds formed the basis of
the new political identity of Uttarakhand, which gained significant
momentum in 1994, when demand for separate statehood achieved almost
unanimous acceptance among both the local populace and national
political parties. The most notable incident during this period was
Rampur Tiraha firing case on the night of 1 October 1994, which
led to a public uproar. On 24 September 1998, the Uttar Pradesh
Legislative Assembly and
Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council passed the
Uttar Pradesh Reorganisation Bill, which began the process of creating
a new state. Two years later the Parliament of
India passed the Uttar
Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2000 and thus, on 9 November 2000,
Uttarakhand became the 27th state of the Republic of
माटू हमरू, पाणी हमरू, हमरा
ही छन यी बौण भी... पितरों न
लगाई बौण, हमुनही त बचौण भी।
Soil ours, water ours, ours are these forests. Our forefathers raised
them, it's we who must protect them.
—Old Chipko Song (
Garhwali language ) ”
Uttarakhand is also well known for the mass agitation of the 1970s
that led to the formation of the Chipko environmental movement and
other social movements. Though primarily a livelihood movement rather
than a forest conservation movement, it went on to become a rallying
point for many future environmentalists , environmental protests, and
movements the world over and created a precedent for non-violent
protest. It stirred up the existing civil society in India, which
began to address the issues of tribal and marginalized people. So much
so that, a quarter of a century later,
India Today mentioned the
people behind the "forest satyagraha" of the
Chipko movement as
amongst "100 people who shaped India". One of Chipko's most salient
features was the mass participation of female villagers. Both female
and male activists played pivotal roles in the movement. Gaura Devi
was the main activist who started this movement other participants
Chandi Prasad Bhatt ,
Sundarlal Bahuguna , and Ghanshyam Raturi,
the popular Chipko poet.
Geography of Uttarakhand With the elevation of
7,816 metres (25,643 ft) above sea level,
Nanda Devi is the highest
Uttarakhand and the second-highest mountain in India,
Uttarakhand has a total area of 53,483 km2, of which 86% is
mountainous and 65% is covered by forest . Most of the northern part
of the state is covered by high Himalayan peaks and glaciers. In the
first half of the nineteenth century, the expanding development of
Indian roads, railways and other physical infrastructure was giving
rise to concerns over indiscriminate logging, particularly in the
Himalaya . Two of the most important rivers in
Hinduism originate in
the region, the
Gangotri and the
Yamunotri . These
two along with
Kedarnath form the
Chota Char Dham , a
holy pilgrimage for the Hindus. The state hosts the
Bengal tiger in
Jim Corbett National Park , the oldest national park of the Indian
Valley of Flowers , a UNESCO World Heritage Site
located in the upper expanses of Bhyundar Ganga near
Gharwal region, is known for the variety and rarity of its flowers and
plants. One who raised this was Sir
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Joseph Dalton Hooker , Director
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew , who visited the region. As a
Lord Dalhousie issued the Indian
Forest Charter in 1855,
reversing the previous laissez-faire policy. The following Indian
Forest Act of 1878 put Indian forestry on a solid scientific basis. A
direct consequence was the founding of the Imperial
Forest School at
Dietrich Brandis in 1878. Renamed the 'Imperial Forest
Research Institute' in 1906, it is now known as the
Institute (India) . The model “
Forest Circles” around Dehradun,
used for training, demonstration and scientific measurements, had a
lasting positive influence on the forests and ecology of the region.
The Himalayan ecosystem provides habitat for many animals (including
bharal , snow leopards , leopards and tigers ), plants, and rare
herbs. Two of India's largest rivers, the
Ganges and the
originate in the glaciers of Uttarakhand, where they are fed by myriad
lakes, glacial melts and streams.
Uttarakhand lies on the southern slope of the
Himalaya range, and the
climate and vegetation vary greatly with elevation, from glaciers at
the highest elevations to subtropical forests at the lower elevations.
The highest elevations are covered by ice and bare rock. Below them,
between 3,000 and 5,000 metres (9,800 and 16,400 ft) are the western
Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows . The temperate western Himalayan
subalpine conifer forests grow just below the tree line. At 3,000 to
2,600 metres (9,800 to 8,500 ft) elevation they transition to the
temperate western Himalayan broadleaf forests , which lie in a belt
from 2,600 to 1,500 metres (8,500 to 4,900 ft) elevation. Below 1,500
metres (4,900 ft) elevation lie the Himalayan subtropical pine forests
Upper Gangetic Plains moist deciduous forests and the drier
Terai-Duar savanna and grasslands cover the lowlands along the Uttar
Pradesh border in a belt locally known as
Bhabar . These lowland
forests have mostly been cleared for agriculture, but a few pockets
In June 2013 several days of extremely heavy rain caused devastating
floods in the region, resulting in more than 5000 people missing and
presumed dead. The flooding was referred to in the Indian media as a
Demographics of Uttarakhand , List of cities in Uttarakhand
by population ,
Garhwali people , and
Source: Census of
The native people of
Uttarakhand are generally called Uttarakhandi
and sometimes specifically either Garhwali or Kumaoni depending on
their place of origin in either the Garhwal or Kumaon region.
According to the 2011 Census of
Uttarakhand has a population
of 10,086,292 comprising 5,137,773 males and 4,948,519 females, with
69.77% of the population living in rural areas. The state is the 20th
most populous state of the country having 0.83% of the population on
1.63% of the land. The population density of the state is 189 people
per square kilometre having a 2001–2011 decadal growth rate of
18.81%. The gender ratio is 963 females per 1000 males. The crude
birth rate in the state is 18.6 with the total fertility rate being
2.3. The state has an infant mortality rate of 43, a maternal
mortality rate of 188 and a crude death rate of 6.6.
Uttarakhand has a multiethnic population spread across two
geocultural regions: the Garhwal, and the Kumaon. A large portion of
the population is
Rajput (various clans of erstwhile landowning rulers
and their descendants), including members of the native Garhwali ,
Gujjar communities, as well as a number of immigrants.
According to a 2007 study by Centre for the Study of Developing
Uttarakhand has the highest percentage of
Brahmins of any
state in India, with approximately 20% of the population being
Brahmin. 18.76% of the population belongs to the
Scheduled Castes (an
official term for the lower castes in the traditional
Scheduled Tribes (an official term for natives outside the
Indian social system), such as the Tharu , Jaunsari , Buksa , Bhotiya
and Raji constitute 2.89% of the population.
Punjabi (2.91%) Bengali (1.45%) Nepali (1.07%) Other (0.76%)
Hindi belonging to
Indo-Aryan languages is the sole official language
Uttarakhand and is spoken by 87.95% of the population (figure
Pahari languages ; Garhwali , Kumaoni and Jaunsari as
variants of Hindi).
Sanskrit is given the status of second official
Tibeto-Burman languages are also spoken in this
region, including Bhoti , Jad , Rangkas , Darmiya , Byangsi , and
Buddhism (0.15%) Jainism
(0.09%) Other or not religious (0.13%)
More than four-fifths of Uttarakhand’s residents are Hindus.
Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists, and Jains make up the remaining
population with the Muslims being the largest minority.
GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS
Government of Uttarakhand , Legislature of Uttarakhand
Elections in Uttarakhand
Elections in Uttarakhand
Following the Constitution of
India , Uttarakhand, like all Indian
states, has a parliamentary system of representative democracy for its
The Governor is the constitutional and formal head of the government
and is appointed for a five-year term by the President of
India on the
advice of the Union government . The present Governor of the state is
Krishan Kant Paul . The Chief Minister , who holds the real executive
powers, is the head of the party or coalition garnering the majority
in the state elections. The current
Chief Minister of Uttarakhand is
Trivendra Singh Rawat . The
Uttarakhand Legislative Assembly consists
of elected members and special office bearers such as the Speaker and
Deputy Speaker that are elected by the members. Assembly meetings are
presided over by the Speaker, or the Deputy Speaker in the Speaker's
absence. A Council of Ministers is appointed by the Governor of
Uttarakhand on the advice of the
Chief Minister of Uttarakhand and
reports to the Legislative Assembly.
Uttarakhand has a unicameral
house with 71
Members of the Legislative Assembly or MLAs. Auxiliary
authorities that govern at a local level are known as panchayats in
rural areas, municipalities in urban areas and municipal corporation
in metro areas. All state and local government offices have a
five-year term. The state also contributes 5 seats to
Lok Sabha and 3
Rajya Sabha of the
Indian Parliament . The judiciary
consists of the
Uttarakhand High Court , located at
Nainital , and a
system of lower courts. The present Chief Justice of
K. M. Joseph .
Uttarakhand is dominated by the Indian National Congress
Bharatiya Janata Party
Bharatiya Janata Party . Since the formation of the state
these parties have ruled the state in turns. Following the hung
mandate in the
Uttarakhand Legislative Assembly election, 2012 , the
Indian National Congress, having the maximum number of seats, formed a
coalition government headed by
Harish Rawat that collapsed on 27 March
2016, following the political turmoil as about nine
MLAs of INC
rebelled against the party and supported the opposition party
Harish Rawat government to lose the majority in assembly.
However, on 21 April 2016 the
High Court of Uttarakhand quashed the
President\'s Rule questioning its legality and maintained a status quo
prior to 27 March 2016 when 9 rebel
MLAs of INC voted against the
Harish Rawat government in assembly on state's money appropriation
bill. This has been seen as a big blow to central government which is
expected to take the matter to the Supreme Court of
India to challenge
the verdict of High Court. On 22 April 2016 the Supreme Court of India
stayed the order of High Court till 27 April 2016, thereby once again
reviving the President\'s Rule . In later developments regarding this
matter, the Supreme Court ordered a floor test to be held on 10 May
with the rebels being barred from voting. On 11 May at the opening of
sealed result of the floor test, under the supervision of Supreme
Harish Rawat government was revived following the victory
in floor test held in
Uttarakhand Legislative Assembly.
Following the 2017 Legislative Assembly election , on 18 March 2017
Trivendra Singh Rawat sworn as the 8th Chief Minister of Uttarakhand
of Fourth Assembly (2017–22).
Districts of Uttarakhand Main articles: Administrative
Districts of Uttarakhand
There are 13 districts in
Uttarakhand which are grouped into two
divisions, Kumaon and Garhwal. Four new districts named Didihat,
Ranikhet, Kotdwar, and
Yamunotri were declared by then Chief Minister
Ramesh Pokhriyal , on 15 August 2011 but yet to be
Districts of two divisions are as follows:
* Udham Singh Nagar
Tehri Garhwal (commonly known as Tehri)
Pauri Garhwal (commonly known as Pauri)
Each district is governed by a district commissioner or district
magistrate. The districts are further divided into sub-divisions,
which are governed by sub-divisional magistrates ; sub-divisions
comprise blocks containing panchayats (village councils) and town
According to the 2011 census, Haridwar, Dehradun, and Udham Singh
Nagar are the most populous districts, each of them having a
population of over one million.
Music of Uttarakhand
Sumitranandan Pant Museum,
Uttarakhand's diverse ethnicities have created a rich literary
tradition in languages including Hindi, Kumaoni, Garhwali, Jaunsari,
and Bhoti. Many of its traditional tales originated in the form of
lyrical ballads and chanted by itinerant singers and are now
considered classics of
Ganga Prasad Vimal , Manohar
Shyam Joshi ,
Prasoon Joshi ,
Shekhar Joshi ,
Shailesh Matiyani ,
Shivani , Sangeet Natak Akademi Awardee
Mohan Upreti ,
B. M. Shah ,
Sahitya Akademi awardee
Manglesh Dabral and Jnanpith awardee
Sumitranandan Pant are some major literary figures from the region.
Prominent philosopher and environmental activist Sundarlal Bahuguna
Vandana Shiva are also from Uttarakhand, so is country music
singer, Bobby Cash .
The dances of the region are connected to life and human existence
and exhibit myriad human emotions. Langvir Nritya is a dance form for
males that resembles gymnastic movements. Barada Nati folk dance is
another famous dance of Dehradun, which is practised during some
religious festivals. Other well-known dances include Hurka Baul,
Jhora-Chanchri, Jhumaila, Chauphula, and
Chholiya . Music is an
integral part of the
Uttarakhandi culture. Popular types of folk songs
include Mangal, Basanti, Khuded and Chhopati. These folk songs are
played on instruments including dhol , damau, turri, ransingha ,
dholki , daur, thali , bhankora , mandan and mashakbaja . "
Bedu Pako "
is a popular folk song of
Uttarakhand with international fame and
legendary status within the state. It serves as unofficial state song
of Uttarakhand. Music is also used as a medium through which the gods
are invoked. Jagar is a form of spirit worship in which the singer, or
Jagariya, sings a ballad of the gods, with allusions to great epics,
Ramayana , that describe the adventures and
exploits of the god being invoked.
Narendra Singh Negi and Mina Rana
are popular folk singers of the region. Architectural details of
a Dharmashala, estb. 1822,
Haridwar Abhisarika Nayika, a
Among the prominent local crafts is wood carving, which appears most
frequently in the ornately decorated temples of Uttarakhand.
Intricately carved designs of floral patterns, deities, and
geometrical motifs also decorate the doors, windows, ceilings, and
walls of village houses. Beautifully worked paintings and murals are
used to decorate both homes and temples.
Pahari painting is a form of
painting that flourished in the region between the 17th and 19th
Mola Ram started the Garhwal Branch of the Kangra school of
Guler State was famous as the cradle of Kangra paintings.
Kumaoni art often is geometrical in nature, while Garhwali art is
known for its closeness to nature. Other crafts of
handcrafted gold jewellery, basketry from Garhwal, woollen shawls,
scarves, and rugs. The latter are mainly produced by the Bhotiyas of
The primary food of
Uttarakhand is vegetables with wheat being a
staple, although non-vegetarian food is also served. A distinctive
Uttarakhand cuisine is the sparing use of tomatoes,
milk, and milk based products. Coarse grain with high fibre content is
very common in
Uttarakhand due to the harsh terrain. Another crop
which is associated with
Buckwheat (locally called
Madua or Jhingora), particularly in the interior regions of Kumaon and
Garhwal. Generally, either Desi
Mustard oil is used for the
purpose of cooking food. Simple recipes are made interesting with the
use of hash seeds "Jakhiya" as spice.
Bal Mithai is a popular
fudge-like sweet. Other popular dishes include Dubuk, Chains, Kap,
Chutkani, Sei, and Gulgula . A regional variation of
Kadhi called Jhoi
or Jholi is also popular. Bathing ghat on the
Kumbh Mela, 2010,
One of the major
Haridwar Kumbh Mela
Haridwar Kumbh Mela , takes place
Haridwar is one of the four places in
India where this
mela is organised.
Haridwar most recently hosted the Purna Kumbh Mela
Makar Sankranti (14 January 2010) to Vaishakh Purnima Snan (28
April 2010). Hundreds of foreigners joined Indian pilgrims in the
festival which is considered the largest religious gathering in the
Kumauni Holi , in forms including Baithki Holi, Khari Holi and
Mahila Holi, all of which start from
Vasant Panchami , are festivals
and musical affairs that can last almost a month. Ganga Dashahara,
Vasant Panchami, Makar Sankranti,
Ghee Sankranti, Khatarua, Vat
Savitri, and Phul Dei are other major festivals. In addition, various
Kanwar Yatra ,
Kandali Festival , Ramman ,
Harela mela ,
Nauchandi mela, Uttarayani mela and
Nanda Devi Raj Jat Mela take
Economy of Uttarakhand
Uttarakhand state is the second fastest growing state in India.
It's gross state domestic product (GSDP) (at constant prices) more
than doubled from ₹24,786 crore in FY2005 to ₹60,898 crore in
FY2012. The real GSDP grew at 13.7% (CAGR) during the FY2005–FY2012
period. The contribution of the service sector to the GSDP of
Uttarakhand was just over 50% during FY 2012. Per capita income in
Uttarakhand is ₹1,03,000 (FY 2013) which is higher than the national
average of ₹74,920 (FY2013). According to the Reserve Bank of
India , the total foreign direct investment in the state from April
2000 to October 2009 amounted to US$46.7 million. A lady
winnowing rice, an important food crop in Uttarakhand.
Like most of India, agriculture is one of the most significant
sectors of the economy of Uttarakhand.
Basmati rice, wheat, soybeans,
groundnuts, coarse cereals, pulses, and oil seeds are the most widely
grown crops. Fruits like apples, oranges, pears, peaches, litchis, and
plums are widely grown and important to the large food processing
industry. Agricultural export zones have been set up in the state for
leechi, horticulture, herbs, medicinal plants, and basmati rice.
During 2010, wheat production was 831 thousand tonnes and rice
production was 610 thousand tonnes, while the main cash crop of the
state, sugarcane, had a production of 5058 thousand tonnes. As 86% of
the state consists of hills, the yield per hectare is not very high.
86% of all croplands are in the plains while the remaining is from the
Economy of Uttarakhand at a Glance
figures in crores of Indian rupees
ECONOMY AT A GLANCE (FY-2012)
IN INDIAN RUPEES
Per capita income
Other key industries include tourism and hydropower, and there is
prospective development in IT, ITES, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals
and automobile industries. The service sector of
includes tourism, information technology, higher education, and
During 2005–2006, the state successfully developed three Integrated
Industrial Estates (IIEs) at
Pantnagar , and
Pharma City at Selaqui; Information Technology Park at Sahastradhara
Dehradun ); and a growth centre at Siggadi (
Kotdwar ). Also in 2006,
20 industrial sectors in public private partnership mode were
developed in the state.
FLORA AND FAUNA
State symbols of
Alpine Musk Deer
Alpine Musk Deer
Uttarakhand has a great diversity of flora and fauna. It has a
recorded forest area of 34,666 km2 which constitutes 65% of the total
area of the state.
Uttarakhand is home to rare species of plants and
animals, many of which are protected by sanctuaries and reserves.
National parks in
Uttarakhand include the Jim Corbett National Park
(the oldest national park of India) at Ramnagar in
Nainital District ,
Valley of Flowers National Park and
Nanda Devi National Park in
Chamoli District , which together are a
UNESCO World Heritage Site . A
number of plant species in the valley are internationally threatened,
including several that have not been recorded from elsewhere in
Rajaji National Park in
Haridwar District and Govind
Pashu Vihar National Park and Sanctuary and
Gangotri National Park in
Uttarkashi District are some other protected areas in the state.
Chital crossing forest path at
Jim Corbett National Park
Leopards are found in areas which are abundant in hills but may also
venture into the lowland jungles. Smaller felines include the jungle
cat , fishing cat , and leopard cat . Other mammals include four kinds
of deer (barking , sambar , hog and chital ), sloth and Himalayan
black bears , Indian gray mongooses , otters , yellow-throated martens
, bharal , Indian pangolins , and langur and rhesus monkeys. In the
summer, elephants can be seen in herds of several hundred. Marsh
crocodiles (Crocodylus palustris), gharials (Gavialis gangeticus) and
other reptiles are also found in the region. Local crocodiles were
saved from extinction by captive breeding programs and subsequently
re-released into the
Ramganga river. Several freshwater terrapins and
turtles like the
Indian sawback turtle (Kachuga tecta), brahminy river
turtle (Hardella thurgii), and
Ganges softshell turtle (Trionyx
gangeticus) are found in the rivers. Butterflies and birds of the
region include red Helen (Papilio helenus), the great eggfly
(Hypolimnos bolina), common tiger (Danaus genutia), pale wanderer
Pareronia avatar avatar), jungle babbler , tawny-bellied babbler ,
great slaty woodpecker , red-breasted parakeet , orange-breasted green
pigeon and chestnut-winged cuckoo . In 2011, a rare migratory bird,
the bean goose , was also seen in the
Jim Corbett National Park .
Evergreen oaks , rhododendrons , and conifers predominate in the
hills. sal (Shorea robusta), silk cotton tree (Bombax ciliata),
Dalbergia sissoo ,
Mallotus philippensis ,
Acacia catechu , Bauhinia
racemosa , and
Bauhinia variegata (camel's foot tree) are some other
trees of the region.
Albizia chinensis , the sweet sticky flowers of
which are favoured by sloth bears, are also part of the region's
flora. A decade long study by Prof.
Chandra Prakash Kala concluded
Valley of Flowers is endowed with 520 species of higher
plants (angiosperms , gymnosperms and pteridophytes ), of these 498
are flowering plants . The park has many species of medicinal plants
Dactylorhiza hatagirea ,
Picrorhiza kurroa , Aconitum
Polygonatum multiflorum ,
Fritillaria roylei , and
Podophyllum hexandrum . In the summer season of 2016, a large
portion of forests in
Uttarakhand caught fires and rubbled to ashes
Uttarakhand forest fires incident which resulted in
the damage of forest resources worth billions of rupees and death of 6
people with hundreds of wild animals died during fires.
Jolly Grant Airport ,
Uttarakhand has 28,508 km of roads, of which 1,328 km are national
highways and 1,543 km are state highways. The State Road Transport
Corporation (SRTC), which has been reorganised in
Uttarakhand as the
Uttarakhand Transport Corporation , is a major constituent of the
transport system in the state. The Corporation began to work on 31
October 2003 and provides services on interstate and nationalised
routes. As of 2012, approximately 1000 buses are being plied by the
Uttarakhand Transport Corporation" on 35 nationalised routes along
with many other non-nationalised routes. There are also private
transport operators operating approximately 3000 buses on
non-nationalised routes along with a few interstate routes in
Uttarakhand and the neighbouring state of U.P. For travelling
locally, the state, like most of the country, has auto rickshaws and
cycle rickshaws . In addition, remote towns and villages in the hills
are connected to important road junctions and bus routes by a vast
network of crowded share jeeps.
The air transport network in the state is gradually improving. Jolly
Grant Airport in Dehradun, is the busiest airport in the state with
six daily flights to
Delhi Airport .
Pantnagar Airport , located in
Pantnagar of the Kumaon region have 1 daily air service to delhi and
return too . There government is planning to develop Naini Saini
Bharkot Airport in
Uttarkashi district and
Gauchar Airport in
Gauchar , Chamoli district.
There are plans to launch helipad service in
Pantnagar and Jolly Grant
Airports and other important tourist destinations like
As over 86% of Uttarakhand's terrain consists of hills, railway
services are very limited in the state and are largely confined to the
plains. In 2011, the total length of railway tracks was about 345 km.
Rail, being the cheapest mode of transport, is most popular. The most
important railway station in Kumaun Division of
Uttarakhand is at
Kathgodam , 35 kilometres away from Nainital.
Kathgodam is the last
terminus of the broad gauge line of North East Railways that connects
Nainital with Delhi, Dehradun, and Howrah. Other notable railway
stations are at
Dehradun railway station is a railhead of the Northern Railways.
Haridwar station is situated on the Delhi–
Dehradun railway lines. One of the main railheads of the
Haridwar Junction Railway Station is connected by
broad gauge line.
Roorkee comes under Northern Railway region of
Indian Railways on the main Punjab –
Mughal Sarai trunk route and is
connected to major Indian cities. Other railheads are
Kotdwar and Ramnagar linked to
Delhi by daily trains.
Tourism in Uttarakhand Tourist map
Uttarakhand has many tourist spots due to its location in the
Himalayas. There are many ancient temples, forest reserves, national
parks, hill stations, and mountain peaks that draw large number of
tourists. There are 44 nationally protected monuments in the state.
Oak Grove School in the state is on the tentative list for World
Heritage Sites. Two of the most holy rivers in
Hinduism the Ganges
Yamuna , originate in Uttarakhand. View of a
Hemkund Sahib , an important pilgrimage
Uttarakhand has long been called "Land of the Gods" as the state has
some of the holiest
Hindu shrines, and for more than a thousand years,
pilgrims have been visiting the region in the hopes of salvation and
purification from sin.
Yamunotri , the sources of the
Ganges and Yamuna, dedicated to Ganga and
Yamuna respectively, fall in
the upper reaches of the state and together with
Vishnu ) and
Kedarnath (dedicated to
Shiva ) form the Chota Char
Dham , one of Hinduism's most spiritual and auspicious pilgrimage
circuits. Haridwar, meaning "Gateway to the God", is a prime Hindu
Haridwar hosts the
Kumbha Mela every twelve years, in
which millions of pilgrims take part from all parts of
India and the
Haridwar is known as the preeminent yoga centre
of India. The state has an abundance of temples and shrines, many
dedicated to local deities or manifestations of
references to many of which can be found in
Hindu scriptures and
Uttarakhand is, however, a place of pilgrimage not only for
Piran Kaliyar Sharif near
Roorkee is a pilgrimage site to
Muslims , Gurdwara
Hemkund Sahib , Gurdwara
Nanakmatta Sahib and
Reetha Sahib are pilgrimage centers for
Sikhs . Tibetan
also made its presence with the reconstruction of Mindrolling
Monastery and its
Stupa , described as the world's highest at
Clement Town ,
Some of the most famous hill stations in
India are in Uttarakhand.
Dhanaulti , Lansdowne ,
Sattal , Almora
Bhimtal , and
Ranikhet are some popular hill stations in
Uttarakhand. The state has 12 National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries
which cover 13.8 percent of the total area of the state. They are
located at different altitudes varying from 800 to 5400 metres. The
oldest national park on the Indian sub-continent, Jim Corbett National
Park , is a major tourist attraction. The park is famous for its
varied wildlife and Project
Tiger run by the Government of
Rajaji National Park is famous for its elephants. In addition, the
Valley of Flowers National Park and
Nanda Devi National
Park in Chamoli District, which together are a UNESCO World Heritage
Vasudhara Falls , near
Badrinath is a waterfall with a height of
122 metres (400 ft) set in a backdrop of snow-clad mountains. The
state has always been a destination for mountaineering , hiking , and
rock climbing in India. A recent development in adventure tourism in
the region has been whitewater rafting in Rishikesh. Due to its
proximity to the
Himalaya ranges, the place is full of hills and
mountains and is suitable for trekking, climbing, skiing, camping,
rock climbing, and paragliding.
Roopkund is a popular trekking site,
famous for the mysterious skeletons found in a lake, which was
National Geographic Channel
National Geographic Channel in a documentary. The trek to
Roopkund passes through the beautiful meadows of
Education in Uttarakhand See also: List of
institutions of higher education in
On 30 September 2010 there were 15,331 primary schools with 1,040,139
students and 22,118 working teachers. At the 2011 census the
literacy rate of the state was 78.82% with 87.40% literacy for males
and 70.01% literacy for females. The language of instruction in the
schools is either English or Hindi. There are mainly government-run,
private unaided (no government help), and private aided schools in the
state. The main school affiliations are CBSE , CISCE or UBSE , the
state syllabus defined by the Department of Education of the
Government of Uttarakhand.
Uttarakhand is also home to a number of universities and degree
Dehradun is known as school capital of India.
The high mountains and rivers of
Uttarakhand attract many tourists
and adventure seekers. It is also a favorite destination for adventure
sports , such as paragliding , sky diving , rafting and bungee jumping
More recently, golf has also become popular, with
Ranikhet being a
Uttarakhand Cricket Association is the governing body for cricket
activities and the
Uttarakhand Cricket Team.
Uttarakhand Football Association is the governing body for
Association Football . The
Uttarakhand football team represents
Uttarakhand in the
Santosh Trophy and other leagues.
This is a list of stadiums in Uttarakhand:
* Abhimanyu Cricket Academy –
Dehradun Abhimanyu Cricket
* Ambedkar Stadium –
Nainital Stadium (commonly known as "Flats") –
* Udayraj Sports Stadium – Kashipur
* Sports Stadium – Kashipur
* Somnath Stadium –
* Jeevan Chandra Upadhyaya Stadium –
* Mini Stadium (under construction) –
* Mini Stadium (under construction) –
* Indira Gandhi International Sports Complex (under construction)
* Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium,
* Sports Stadium – Rudrapur
* Stevenson Stadium –
Outline of Uttarakhand
List of people from Uttarakhand
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