Utter Pradesh : An Overview

Governor: Banwari Lal Joshi
Chief Minister: Mayawati
Capital: Lucknow
Legislature: Bicameral
Lok Sabha seats: 80
Judicature: Allahabad High Court
Languages: Hindi
Population density: 689/sq km
No. of districts: 70
Main crops: Sugarcane, wheat, rice,
gram, barley, cotton, tea, oilseeds, antibiotic plants
Rivers: Ganga, Yamuna, Gandak, Gomti, Sarayu, Ramganga,
Minerals: Limestone, dolomite
Industries: Sugar, handlooms, woolen, textiles
Airports: Lucknow, Kanpur, Varanasi, Allahabad, Agra, Jhansi,
Gorakhpur, Lalitpur


On the basis of its physiography, the main regions of Uttar Pradesh are the central plains of the Ganga and its tributaries, the southern uplands, the Himalayan region, and the submontane region between the Himalayas and the plains. The Gangetic Plain occupies about three-fourths of the total area of Uttar Pradesh. It largely consists of a fertile plain which is featureless, and varies in elevation, rising up to 300 metres in the northwest, and 60 metres in the extreme east. It is composed of alluvial deposits which are brought down by the Ganga and its tributaries from the Himalayas. The southern uplands constitute a part of the Vindhya Range, which is rugged, largely dissected, and rises towards the south-east. The elevation in this region reaches up to 300 metres. The submontane region consists of the Bhabar, a narrow bed of alluvium and gravel, which along its southern fringes joins into the Terai area. The Terai area, which previously consisted of tall grass and thick forests, is a marshy and damp tract. A definite portion of the Terai region has been subject to deforestation. The topography of the Himalayan region is vastly varied. There are deep canyons, turbulent streams, large lakes and snowcapped peaks.


The history of Uttar Pradesh is recognised in the later Vedic Age as Brahmarshi Desha or Madhya Desha. Many great sages of the Vedic times like Bhardwaja, Gautam, Yagyavalkaya, Vashishtha, Vishwamitra and Valmiki flourished in this state. Several sacred books of the Aryans were also composed here. Two great epics of India, Ramayana and Mahabharata, appear to have been inspired by Uttar Pradesh. In the Sixth Century BC Uttar Pradesh was associated with two new religions- Jainism and Buddhism. It was at Sarnath that Buddha preached his first sermon and laid the foundations of his order. Several centres in Uttar Pradesh like Ayodhya, Prayag, Varanasi and Mathura became reputed centres of learning. In the medieval period Uttar Pradesh passed under Muslim rule and led the way to new synthesis of Hindu and Islamic cultures. Ramananda and his Muslim disciple Kabir, Tulsidas, Surdas and many other intellectuals contributed to the growth of Hindi and other languages. During the British rule in India, there were certain pockets in Uttar Pradesh that were governed by the English equity and common law. In 1773, the Mughal Emperor transferred the districts of Banaras and Ghazipur to the East India Company. The East India Company acquired the area of modernday Uttar Pradesh over a period of time. The territories occupied from the nawabs, the Scindias of Gwalior and the Gurkhas were initially placed within the Bengal Presidency.


1833 - North-Western Provinces, was created as Agra Presidency

1877 - Kingdom of Awadh was united with the North-Western Provinces, and was renamed North-Western Provinces of Agra and Oudh.

1902 - The province was renamed, when it became ‘United Provinces of Agra and Oudh’.

1947 – became an administrative unit of Independent India

1949 – Autonomous states of Rampur & Tehri – Garhwal were incorporated into the Provinces.

1973 - The name was shortened to ‘United Provinces’.

2000- Uttarakhand was carved out from Uttar Pradesh.

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