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Uttar Pradesh    
 

Uttar Pradesh is a state located in northern India. It was created on 1 April 1937 as the United Provinces, and was renamed Uttar Pradesh in 1950. Lucknow is the administrative capital of Uttar Pradesh. Ghaziabad, Kanpur, Moradabad, Aligarh, Agra, Bareily, Varanasi are famous for it's industrial importance in the state as well as in India. On 9 November 2000, a new state, Uttarakhand, was carved from the mountainous Himalayan region of Uttar Pradesh.


Uttar Pradesh was home to powerful empires of ancient and medieval India, including Magadha, Nanda, Mauryan, Sunga, Kushan, Gupta, Gurjara, Rashtrakuta, Pala and Mughal which many say was improved by the Nawabs of Awadh. The two major rivers of the state, the Ganga and Yamuna, join at Allahabad and then flow as the Ganga further east. The state has several historical, natural, and religious tourist destinations, such as the Taj Mahal, Varanasi, Piprahwa, Kaushambi, Kanpur, Ballia, Shravasti, Kushinagar, Lucknow, Chitrakoot, Jhansi, Allahabad, Budaun, Meerut and Mathura.


Uttar Pradesh has a humid subtropical climate and experiences four seasons. The winter in January and February is followed by summer between March and May and the monsoon season between June and September. Summers are extreme with temperatures fluctuating anywhere between 0 °C and 50 °C in parts of the state. The Gangetic plain varies from semiarid to sub-humid. The mean annual rainfall ranges from 650 mm in the southwest corner of the state to 1000 mm in the eastern and southeastern parts of the state. Primarily a summer phenomenon, the Bay of Bengal branch of the Indian Monsoon is the major bearer of rain in most parts of state. It is the South-West Monsoon which brings most of the rain here, although rain due to the western disturbances and North-East Monsoon also contribute small quantities towards the overall precipitation of the state.


Uttar Pradesh ranks first in domestic tourist arrivals with more than 71 million, owing to its rich and varied topography, vibrant culture, festivals, monuments, ancient places of worship, and viharas. Thousands gather at Allahabad to take part in the Magh Mela festival on the banks of the Ganges. This festival is organised on a larger scale every 12th year and is called the Kumbha Mela, where over 10 million Hindu pilgrims congregate in one of the largest gatherings of people in the world.


The historically important towns of Sarnath and Kushinagar are located not far from Varanasi. Gautama Buddha gave his first sermon after his enlightenment at Sarnath and died at Kushinagar; both are important pilgrimage sites for Buddhists. Also at Sarnath are the Pillars of Ashoka and the Lion Capital of Ashoka, both important archaeological artifacts with national significance. At a distance of 80 km from Varanasi, Ghazipur is famous not only for its Ganges Ghats but also for the tomb of the British potentate Lord Cornwallis, maintained by the Archeological Survey of India.


Lucknow, the capital of the state, has several beautiful historical monuments such as Bara Imambara and Chhota Imambara. It has also preserved the damaged complex of the Oudh-period British Resident's quarters, which are being restored. Uttar Pradesh gives access to three World Heritage Sites: the Taj Mahal, Agra Fort, and the nearby Fatehpur Sikri. Varanasi is an ancient city famous for its ghats.To promote tourism, the Directorate of Tourism was established in the 1972 with a Director General who is an I.A.S. officer. In 1974 the Uttar Pradesh State Tourism Development Corporation was established to look after the commercial tourist activities.


 
 
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