1.a state of southeastern India on the Bay of Bengal
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Andhra Pradesh (n.)
|— State —|
|Charminar, Tirupathi, Prakasam Barrage, Lepakshi Nandi (bull), Kirti torana of Warangal Fort|
|Nickname(s): Rice Bowl of India|
|Coordinates (Hyderabad): Coordinates:|
|Established||1 November 1956|
|• Body||Government of India, Government of Andhra Pradesh|
|• Governor||E. S. L. Narasimhan|
|• Chief Minister||N. Kiran Kumar Reddy (INC)|
|• Legislature||Bicameral (294 + 90 seats)|
|• Deputy Chief Minister||Damodar Raja Narasimha|
|• High Court||Andhra Pradesh High Court|
|• Total||275,045 km2 (106,195 sq mi)|
|• Density||310/km2 (800/sq mi)|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+05:30)|
|ISO 3166 code||IN-AP|
|HDI rank||20th (2005)|
|Official language||Telugu (official)
Andhra Pradesh / / is one of the 28 states of India, situated on the country's southeastern coast. It is India's fourth largest state by area and fifth largest by population. Its capital and largest city is Hyderabad. Andhra Pradesh lies between 12°41' and 22°N latitude and 77° and 84°40'E longitude, and is bordered by Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and Orissa in the north, the Bay of Bengal in the east, Tamil Nadu to the south and Karnataka to the west.
Andhra Pradesh has the second-longest coastline of 972 km (604 mi) among the states of India. Two major rivers, the Godavari and the Krishna, run across the state. The small enclave (30 square kilometres (12 sq mi)) of Yanam, a district of Pondicherry, lies in the Godavari delta in the northeast of the state. The state is separated into three regions: Telangana, Andhra, and Rayalaseema.
The total GDP of Andhra Pradesh exceeds $100 billion, ranking it third among the states of India. It is historically called the "Rice Bowl of India". Andhra Pradesh's GSDP for 2010 was estimated at $100 billion in current prices and in 2011 it rose to $124,000 billion and $146,000 billion in 2012-13 It holds a position in the provinces of the world with more than billion dollar GDP. More than 77% of its crop is rice; Andhra Pradesh produced 17,796,000 tonnes of rice in 2006.
On 1 November 1956, the States Reorganization Act formed Andhra Pradesh by merging Telugu-speaking areas of Hyderabad State with the already existing Andhra State . The Marathi speaking areas of Hyderabad State merged with Bombay State and Kannada speaking areas were merged with Mysore State.
The first historical records appear in the Buddhist text Anguttara Nikaya, when what is now Nizamabad and Adilabad districts of the Telangana region constituted parts of the Assaka Mahajanapada (700–300 BCE) An Andhra tribe was mentioned in the Sanskrit epics such as Aitareya Brahmana (800 BCE) and Mahabharata (400 BCE). The Natya Shastra written by Bharatha (1st century BCE) also mentions the Andhra people. The roots of the Telugu language have been seen on inscriptions found near the Guntur district and from others dating to the rule of Renati Cholas in the 5th century CE.
Megasthenes, a Greek traveller and geographer who visited the Court of Chandragupta Maurya (322–297 BCE), mentioned that the region had three fortified towns and an army of 100,000 infantry, 200 cavalry, and 1,000 elephants. Buddhist books reveal that Andhras established their huts or tents near the Godavari River at that time.
Inscriptional evidence shows that there was an early kingdom in coastal Andhra (Guntur District) ruled first by Kuberaka and then by his son Varun, with Pratipalapura (Bhattiprolu) as the capital. Around the same time, Dhanyakatakam/Dharanikota (present day Amaravati) appears to have been an important place, which was visited by Gautama Buddha. According to the ancient Tibetan scholar Taranatha: "On the full moon of the month Chaitra in the year following his enlightenment, at the great stupa of Dhanyakataka, the Buddha emanated the mandala of 'The Glorious Lunar Mansions' (Kalachakra)".
The Mauryans extended the their rule over Andhra in the 4th century BC. With the fall of the Maurya Empire in the 3rd century BC, the Satavahanas became independent. After the decline of the Satavahanas in 220 CE, the Ikshvaku dynasty, Pallavas, Ananda Gotrikas, Rashtrakutas, Vishnukundinas, Eastern Chalukyas, and Cholas ruled the land.
During this period, Telugu emerged as a popular language, supplanting Prakrit and Sanskrit. Telugu was made the official language by the Vishnukundina kings (5th and 6th centuries), who ruled from their capital city of Vengi. Eastern Chalukyas ruled for a long period after the decline of Vishnukundinas; their capital was also Vengi. As early as the 1st century CE, Chalukyas were mentioned as being vassals and chieftains under the Satavahanas and later under the Ikshvakus. The Chalukya ruler Rajaraja Narendra ruled Rajahmundry around 1022 CE.
The battle of Palnadu (1182) resulted in the weakening of the Eastern Chalukya dynasty and led to the emergence of the Kakatiya dynasty in the 12th and 13th centuries CE. The Kakatiyas were at first vassals of the Rashtrakutas, and ruled over a small territory near Warangal. Eventually all the Telugu lands were united by the Kakatiyas. In 1323 CE, Delhi Sultan Ghiyath al-Din Tughluq sent a large army under Ulugh Khan to conquer the Telugu country and captured Warangal. King Prataparudra was taken prisoner. Musunuri Nayaks recaptured Warangal from the Delhi Sultanate in 1326 CE and ruled for fifty years.
|State language||Telugu (తెలుగు)|
|State symbol||Poorna kumbham (పూర్ణకుంభం)|
|State song||Maa Telugu Thalliki (మా తెలుగు తల్లికి మల్లె పూదండ)
by Sri Sankarambadi Sundaraachari
|State animal||Black Buck (కృష్ణ జింక)|
|State bird||Indian Roller (పాల పిట్ట)|
|State tree||Neem (వేప)|
|State sport||Kabaddi (చెడుగుడు)|
|State dance||Kuchipudi (కూచిపూడి)|
|State flower||Water lily (కలువ పువ్వు)|
Inspired by their success, the Vijayanagara Empire, one of the greatest empires in the history of Andhra Pradesh and India, was founded by Harihara and Bukka, who served as treasury officers of the Kakatiyas of Warangal. In 1347 CE, an independent Muslim state, the Bahmani Sultanate, was established in south India by Ala-ud-Din Bahman Shah in a revolt against the Delhi Sultanate. The Qutb Shahi dynasty held sway over the Andhra country for about two hundred years from the early part of the 16th century to the end of the 17th century.
Although Hyderabad was founded less than 500 years ago, archaeologists have unearthed Iron Age sites near the city that could date back to 500 BC. Approximately over 1000 years ago this region was ruled by Kakatiyas until 1310 AD, and fell under Delhi sultanate from (1310–1345), when the central sultanate became weak the Bahmani Sultan revolted against the Sultan of Delhi Muhammad bin Tughluq and established an independent state in Deccan within the Delhi Sultanates southern provinces and ruled until 1518 AD. Quli Qutb-ul-Mulk, governor of golconda, declared Independence from Bahmani Dynasty, and announced himself a sultan of golconda in the year 1518 AD, and founded the Qutb Shahi dynasty.
Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, a fifth Sultan of the Qutb Shahi dynasty (the ruling family of the Golconda Sultanate, previously a feudatory of Bahmani sultanate that declared independence in 1512) founded the city of Hyderabad on the banks of the Musi River in 1591 to relieve a water shortage the dynasty had experienced at its old headquarters at Golconda city (11 kilometers west of Hyderabad city on the other side of Musi). He also ordered the construction of the Charminar. The Mughal emperor Aurangzeb captured kingdom of Golconda including the city of Hyderabad in 1687 and, during this short Mughal rule, Mughal-appointed governors of the city soon gained autonomy.
In 1724, Asaf Jah I, who was granted the title Nizam-ul-Mulk ("Governor of the country") by the Mughal emperor, defeated a rival official to establish control over kingdom of Golconda renamed it as Hyderabad state. Thus began the Asaf Jahi dynasty that ruled Hyderabad State until a year after India's independence from Britain. Asaf Jah's successors ruled as the Nizams of Hyderabad. The rule of the seven Nizams saw the growth of Hyderabad city both culturally and economically. Hyderabad city became the formal capital of the kingdom (Hyderabad state) and Golkonda city was almost abandoned. Huge reservoirs, like the Nizam Sagar, Tungabhadra, Osman Sagar, and Himayat Sagar, were built. Survey work on Nagarjuna Sagar had also begun during this time; the actual work was completed by the Government of India in 1969. The wealth and grandeur of the Nizams is demonstrated by the fabled Jewels of The Nizams, which is a tourist attraction. The state was the richest and the largest among the princely states of India. The land area of the state was 90,543 mi²; its population in 1901 was 50,073,759. It enjoyed an estimated revenue of £90,029,000.
Scholars have suggested that the Prajñāpāramitā Sutras, the earliest Mahayana Sutras, developed among the Mahāsāṃghika along the Krishna River in Andhra country. A.K. Warder holds that "the Mahāyāna originated in the south of India and almost certainly in the Andhra country." Sree Padma and Anthony Barber note that "historians of Buddhist thought have been aware for quite some time that such pivotally important Mahayana Buddhist thinkers as Nāgārjuna, Dignaga, Candrakīrti, Aryadeva, and Bhavaviveka, among many others, formulated their theories while living in Buddhist communities in Andhra." They note that the ancient Buddhist sites in the lower Krishna Valley, including Amaravati, Nagarjunakonda and Jaggayyapeta "can be traced to at least the third century BCE, if not earlier." The Dzogchen, Mahamudra and Lamdré masters Sri Singha, Savari, Maitripa and Virupa lived and taught in the Andhra region for some portion of their lives or were in some cases permanent residents.
In Colonial India, Northern Circars became part of the British Madras Presidency. Eventually this region emerged as the Coastal Andhra region. Later the Nizam rulers of Hyderabad ceded five territories to the British which eventually emerged as Rayalaseema region. The Nizams retained control of the interior provinces as the princely state of Hyderabad, acknowledging British rule in return for local autonomy. However, Komaram Bheem, a tribal leader, started his fight against the erstwhile Asaf Jahi Dynasty for the liberation of Hyderabad State. Meanwhile, the French occupied Yanam, in the Godavari delta, and (save for periods of British control) would hold it until 1954. India became independent from the United Kingdom in 1947. The Nizam wanted to retain the independence of the Princely Hyderabad State from India, but the people of the region launched a movement to join the Indian Union. The state of Hyderabad was forcibly joined to the Republic of India with Operation Polo in 1948.
In an effort to gain an independent state based on the linguistic and protect the interests of the Andhra (Telugu-speaking) people of Madras State, Potti Sreeramulu fasted until death in 1952. After his death, Andhra attained statehood on 1 November 1953, with Kurnool as its capital.
On 1 November 1956, the States Reorganization Act merged the Telugu-speaking areas of the former Hyderabad state with the Telugu-speaking areas of the former Madras state to form the state of Vishalandhra, which is named as Andhra Pradesh. The city of Hyderabad, the former capital of the Hyderabad State, was made the capital of the new state.
There were several movements to disintegrate Andhra Pradesh into two states viz. Andhra and Telengana in the late 1960 which are continuing till date.
On 9 December 2009, it was announced that a separation proposal for Telangana would be introduced to the state assembly. Controversy arose as to the future status of Hyderabad City, part of one of the ten districts of Telangana region. This move was opposed by protesters from Kosta and Rayalaseema regions,however the protests in the state capital Hyderabad was rocked only by pro-bifurcation protests. On 23 December 2009, the government decided to put the decision of bifurcating the state on hold until a consensus is achieved among the different political parties.
This agitated supporters of a separate Telangana state. On 5 January 2010, the Central Government represented by Home Minister P Chidambaram conducted a meeting by inviting all the recognised political parties of AP and recorded their stand on the issue. The Government of India appointed a committee, headed by B. N. Srikrishna, to guide the central government to settle the issue of Telangana amicably. The committee submitted its report on 30 December 2010, a day before its term was to expire.
Geographically, Andhra Pradesh is composed of most of the eastern half of the Deccan plateau and the plains to the east of the Eastern Ghats. Andhra Pradesh is divided into three regions. The northern part of the plateau is the Telangana region and the southern part is known as Rayalaseema. These two regions are separated by the River Krishna. The third region is Coastal Andhra. The plains to the east of Eastern Ghats form the Eastern coastal plains. The Eastern Ghats are discontinuous and individual sections have local names. The Kadapa Basin formed by two arching branches of the Eastern Ghats is a mineral rich area. The coastal plains are for the most part delta regions formed by the Godavari, Krishna, and Penner rivers. The Eastern Ghats are a major dividing line in the state's geography. The Ghats become more pronounced towards the south and extreme north of the coast. The Eastern Ghat region is home to dense tropical forests, while the vegetation becomes sparse as the Ghats give way to the Deccan Plateau, where shrub vegetation is more common. Most of the coastal plains are put to intense agricultural use. The west and southwest parts of Andhra Pradesh have semi-arid conditions.
The climate of Andhra Pradesh varies considerably, depending on the geographical region. Monsoons play a major role in determining the climate of the state. Summers last from March to June. In the coastal plain, the summer temperatures are generally higher than the rest of the state, with temperature ranging between 20 °C and 41 °C.
July to September is the seasons for tropical rains in Andhra Pradesh. The state receives heavy rainfall from Southwest Monsoon during these months. About one third of the total rainfall in Andhra Pradesh is brought by the Northeast Monsoon. October and November see low-pressure systems and tropical cyclones form in the Bay of Bengal which, along with the Northeast Monsoon, bring rains to the southern and coastal regions of the state. November, December, January, and February are the winter months in Andhra Pradesh. Since the state has a long coastal belt the winters are not very cold. The range of winter temperature is generally 12 °C to 30 °C.
Hyderabad is the capital and, along with the adjoining twin city Secunderabad, is the largest city in the state.Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh's main seaport, is the second largest city and is home to the Indian Navy's Eastern Naval Command. Due to its location and proximity to major rail and road routes, Vijayawada is a major trading center and is the third largest city of the state, Guntur is the fourth largest city of the state, followed by Rajamundry, Nellore, Warangal, Kurnool, Kakinada. Other important places of the state are Tirupati, Srikakulam, and Kadapa.
|Maharastra||Maharastra, Chattisgarh & Orissa||Bay of Bengal|
|Karnataka||Bay of Bengal|
|Karnataka||Tamil Nadu||Bay of Bengal|
|Source:Census of India|
Other languages spoken in Andhra Pradesh by less than 1% each are Kannada (0.80%), Marathi (0.74%), and Oriya (0.44%). Languages spoken by less than 0.2% of the population include Malayalam (0.08%), Gujarati (0.06%), Bengali (0.05%), Gorkhali/Nepali (0.03%), Punjabi (0.01%) and Sindhi(0.01%).
Andhra Pradesh ranks tenth compared to all Indian States in the Human Development Index scores with a score of 0.416.
The National Council of Applied Economic Research district analysis in 2001 reveals that Khammam, Krishna, West Godavari, Chittoor, and Medak are the five districts with the highest Human Development Indexscores in ascending order in rural AP. The data show that the poor make up 16.3 per cent of the total population in rural AP and expenditure on consumption is around 13.5 per cent of the total consumption expenditure. The female literacy rate is 0.66 compared to male literacy rate in rural AP. The district-wise variations for poverty ratio are high and low for the ratio of female/male literacy rate.
The state is home to Hindu saints of all castes. An important figure is Saint Yogi Sri Potuluri Virabrahmendra Swami. He was born in the Vishwabrahmin (goldsmith) caste and had Brahmin and Dalit disciples. Fisherman Raghu was a Shudra saint. Saint Kakkayya was a chura (sweeper) Harijan saint.
Several important Hindu modern-day saints are from Andhra Pradesh. These include Sri Sathya Sai Baba, Sri Sivabala Yogi Maharaj who advocates religious unity in worship; Swami Sundara Chaitanyanandaji of the Aurobindo Mission; and Brahmarshi Subhash Patri, founder of the pyramid spiritual societies movement.Islam in Hyderabad, with historical patronizing by the rulers, has a strong Sufi influence, with various moments active in the last two decades. Hyderabad has also produced many renowned religious scholars of representing different Islamic sects and trends, including Abul Ala Maududi, Turab-ul-Haq Qadri, and Allamah Rasheed Turabi. Most Telugu Christians are Protestant belonging to major Indian Protestant denominations such as the Church of South India, the Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Samavesam of Telugu Baptist Churches and several others.
Andhra Pradesh's GSDP for 2010 was estimated at $100 billion in current prices and in 2011 it rose to $123.560 billion and $145.854 billion in 2012-13 placing Andhra pradesh in second place in India in GDP.It holds a position in the Provinces of the world with more than billion dollar GDP. The state ranks second in terms of overall Gross State Product among all the states of the Indian Union. In terms of per capita GSDP the state compares very favorably with other large states. In the 2010 list by Forbes Magazine, there are Seven from Andhra Pradesh among the top 100 richest Indians.
Agriculture has been the chief source of income for the state's economy. Andhra Pradesh is an exporter of many agricultural products. Four important rivers of India, the Godavari, Krishna, Penna, and Thungabhadra flow through the state, providing irrigation. Rice, sugarcane, cotton, Chili pepper, mango, and tobacco are the local crops. Recently, crops used for vegetable oil production such as sunflower and peanuts have gained favour. There are many multi-state irrigation projects in development, including Godavari River Basin Irrigation Projects and Nagarjuna Sagar Dam.
The service sector of the state accounts for 43% of the gross state domestic product (GSDP) and employs 20% of the work force. Andhra Pradesh economy has registered over 5.5% annual economic growth rate during the last two decades. The state is ranked fifth industrially developed states in India.
Andhra Pradesh ranks second in India in terms of mineral wealth. The state has about one third of India's limestone reserves, estimated at about 30 billion tonnes. The Tumalappalli Uranium mine in Andhra has confirmed 49,000 tonnes of ore and there are indications that it could hold reserves totalling three times its current size, The Times of India quoted Srikumar Banerjee as saying. The mine's proven reserve is enough to support a 8,000 mega watts nuclear power plant for 40 years, the report added. The Krishna Godavari Basin has huge reserves of natural gas and petroleum. The state has a large amount of coal reserves. The state ranks first nationwide in hydro electricity generation, with a national market share of over 11%. Andhra Pradesh has the fourth largest power generating utility in the country, with an installed capacity of around 10,650 MW. The two cheapest sources of thermal power generation – coal and natural gas – are in abundance.
In 2004–2005, Andhra Pradesh was at the second position in the list of top information technology exporting states of India. The IT sector is expanding at a rate of 52.3% every year. The IT exports reached 19,000 crores ($4.5 billion) in 2006–2007, contributed to 14 per cent of total IT exports of the nation and ranked fourth in India. Other key sectors include, Biopharmaceuticals, Power, Automobile, Tourism, Textiles, Retail, Leather, Mining and Religious tourism.
Andhra Pradesh has a Vidhan Sabha (legislative assembly, lower house) of 294 seats, and a Vidhan Parishad (legislative council, upper house) of 90 members. 31 members are elected from local bodies, 31 members are elected from the assembly, eight members are elected from teachers, eight members are elected from graduates, and 12 members are nominated by the Governor. In the Parliament of India Andhra Pradesh has 18 in the Rajya Sabha, the Upper House, and 42 in the Lok Sabha, the Lower House.
Andhra Pradesh had a series of governments headed by Indian National Congress (INC) Party until 1982.Nandamuri Taraka Rama Rao is the founder of Telugu Desam party and served as the first chief minister from the party. N. Chandrababu Naidu held the record for the longest serving chief minister (1995 to 2004). P. V. Narasimha Rao served as the chief minister of the state from 1971 to 1973, and went on to become the Prime Minister of India in 1991. The first Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh was Neelam Sanjiva Reddy who later served as President of India. The Congress chief ministers of the state are Damodaram Sanjivayya, Kasu Brahmananda Reddy, P. V. Narasimha Rao, Jalagam Vengala Rao, Marri Chenna Reddy, Tanguturi Anjaiah, Bhavanam Venkatarami Reddy, Kotla Vijaya Bhaskara Reddy, Nadendla Bhaskara Rao, Nedurumalli Janardhana Reddy, Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy, Konijeti Rosaiah and N. Kiran Kumar Reddy.
Until 1962, the CPI, along with socialist parties, played an important role as opposition parties. Parties namely Praja Socialist Party and Krishi Lok Party played important role in 1950's. In the 1967 state assembly elections all socialist parties were eliminated and CPI lost opposition party status. N.G. Ranga's Swatantra Party became the Opposition Party. They also failed to hold control later and became defunct. In 1978 Jalagam Vengal Rao and Kasu Brahmananda Reddy formed the Reddy Congress and contested against INC but lost.
In 1983 the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) won the state elections and N.T. Rama Rao (NTR) became the chief minister of the state for the first time. This broke the long time single party monopoly enjoyed by the INC from 1956 until 1982. A few months after the election, Nadendla Bhaskara Rao usurped power when NTR was away in the United States for medical treatment. After coming back, NTR campaigned for a comeback by demonstrating the support of the majority of the elected MLAs. The governor Thakur Ram Lal was ousted by Indira Gandhi and in his place she appointed Shankar Dayal Sharma. NTR was reinstated as chief minister. Within a month NTR recommended the dissolution of the assembly and called for fresh elections. Gandhi was assassinated on 31 October 1984 by her Sikh bodyguard and Rajiv Gandhi was made Prime Minister by President Giani Zail Singh. In the ensuing elections for Lok Sabha and the AP Assembly, the Telugu Desam Party won in Andhra Pradesh and NTR came back to power.
The 1989 elections ended the rule of NTR, with the INC party returning to power with Marri Chenna Reddy at the helm. He was replaced by Janardhan Reddy in 1990, who was replaced by Kotla Vijaya Bhaskara Reddy in 1992. In 1994, Andhra Pradesh gave a mandate to the Telugu Desam Party again, and NTR became the chief minister again. Nara Chandrababu Naidu, the son-in-law of NTR, usurped power with the backing of a majority of the MLAs. The Telugu Desam Party won both the assembly and Lok Sabha election in 1999 under the leadership of Chandrababu Naidu. There was an assassination attempt on Naidu in 2003 in Tirupathi; he survived the attack. In the ensuing elections the party lost power to a resurgent INC and its allies. Y. S. Rajasekhar Reddy became the Chief Minister.
Y. S. Rajasekhar Reddy became the CM again by fending off the Praja Rajyam Party and a major alliance of TDP, TRS, CPI and CPM. He died on 2 September 2009 in a helicopter crash. Konijeti Rosaiah, a senior statesman and former state finance minister, became the Chief Minister on 3 September 2009. On 24 November 2010, Rosaiah submitted his resignation on the grounds of increased work pressure. Nallari Kiran Kumar Reddy was sworn in as the new Chief Minister on the following day.
Andhra Pradesh is promoted by its tourism department as the "Koh-i-Noor of India."
Andhra Pradesh is the home of many religious pilgrim centres. Tirumala Venkateswara Temple in Tirupati is according to believers the abode of Hindu god Venkateswara. Srisailam, nestled in the Nallamala Hills is the abode of Mallikarjuna and is one of twelve Jyothirlingas in India. Amaravati's Shiva temple is one of the Pancharamams, as is Yadagirigutta, the abode of an avatara of Vishnu, Lakshmi Narasimha. The Ramappa temple and Thousand Pillars temple in Warangal are famous for their temple carvings. The state has numerous Buddhist centres at Amaravati, Nagarjuna Konda, Bhattiprolu, Ghantasala, Nelakondapalli, Dhulikatta, Bavikonda, Thotlakonda, Shalihundam, Pavuralakonda, Bojjannakonda(Sankaram), Phanigiri and Kolanpaka. The Vijayanagara Empire built number of monuments, including the Srisailam temple and Lepakshi temples.
The golden beaches at Visakhapatnam, the one-million-year-old limestone caves at Borra, picturesque Araku Valley, hill resorts of Horsley Hills, river Godavari racing through a narrow gorge at Papi Kondalu, waterfalls at Ettipotala, Kuntala and rich bio-diversity at Talakona are some of the natural attractions of the state. Kailashagiri is a park near the sea in Visakhapatnam. Visakhapatnam is home to other tourist attractions such as the INS Kursura S20 Submarine museum (the only one of its kind in India), the longest beach road in India, Yarada Beach, Araku Valley, and Indira Gandhi Zoological Gardens.
The Borra Caves are located in the Anatagiri Hills of the Eastern Ghats, near Vishakapatnam. They are at an altitude of about 800 to 1300 metres and are famous for million-year-old stalactite and stalagmite formations. They were discovered by British geologist William King George in 1807. The caves get their name from a formation inside the caves that looks like the human brain, which in the local language, Telugu, is known as burra. The Belum caves were formed due to erosion in limestone deposits in the area by the weakly acidic water of the Chitravati River millions of years ago.
The Belum Caves in Kurnool District have a length of 3,229 metres (10,594 ft), making them the second largest natural caves on the Indian subcontinent. The Belum Caves derive their name from Bilum, the Sanskrit word for caves. In Telugu, the caves are known as Guhalu. The caves have long passages, spacious chambers, freshwater galleries, and siphons. The caves' deepest point is 120 feet (37 m) from the entrance and is known asPatalganaga.
Horsley Hills, elevation 1,265 metres (4,150 ft), is a summer hill resort in Andhra Pradesh, about 160 km (99 mi) from Bangalore and144 km (89 mi) from Tirupati. The town of Madanapalle lies nearby. Major tourist attractions include the Mallamma temple and the Rishi Valley School. Horsely Hills is the departure point for the Koundinya Wildlife Sanctuary at a distance of 87 km (54 mi).
Nirmal is famous for its handicrafts and paintings. Kuntala waterfall, at 45 metres (148 ft), is the biggest in the state. Charminar, Golconda Fort, Chandragiri Fort, Chowmahalla Palace, and Falaknuma Palace are some of the monuments in the state.
Kanaka Durga Temple in Vijayawada in Krishna district, Venkateswara Temple in Dwaraka Tirumala, West Godavari District, and Surya temple in Arasavelli in Srikakulam District are also places to see in Andhra Pradesh.
The Annavaram Satayannarayana Swami temple is in East Godavari, near Kakinada.Konaseema is another place in East Godavari for nature lovers with scenic greenery of lush paddy fields and coconut groves. All along the banks of river Godavari and its canals.
Tirumala Venkateswara Temple in the town of Tirumala in Chittoor district is a very important pilgrimage site for Hindus throughout India. It is the second richest pilgrimage city of any religious faith in the world after Padmanabhaswamy Temple in the Indian state of Kerala. Its main temple is dedicated to the god Venkateswara. In 1517 Vijayanagara ruler Sri Krishna Deva Raya, on one of his many visits to the temple, donated gold and jewels, enabling the Vimana (inner shrine) roofing to be gilded. Statues of Sri Krishna Deva Raya and his spouse stand in the premises of the temple.
The five ancient Hindu temples of Lord Shiva, known as Pancharama Kshetras, are located at - Amararama, Draksharama, Somarama, Ksheerarama and Kumararama. The Sivalingas at these temples are made from a single Sivalinga.
Simhachalam is another popular pilgrimage site of national importance located on a hill 20 kilometres (12 mi) north of the Visakhapatnam city centre. Simhachalam is said to be the abode of the savior-god Narasimha, who rescued Prahlada from his abusive father Hiranyakashipu. One of the most exquisitely sculpted shrines of Andhra Pradesh, it has a beautifully carved 16-pillared Natya mantapa and a 96-pillared Kalyana mantapa. The temple was built in 11th century by Kullotunga chola. Engaged couples go to this temple as a ritual just before marriage. It is one of the most crowded temples of Andhra Pradesh.
Srisailam temple in Kurnool district is a very famous Shiva temple, and is one of the twelve Jyotirlinga shrines. Lord Rama himself installed the Sahasralinga, while the Pandavas lodged the Panchapandava lingas in the temple courtyard. The Skanda Purana, an ancient religious text, has a chapter called "Srisaila Kandam" dedicated to this temple, which points to its ancient origin. It is said that Adi Shankara (c. 788–821 CE) visited this temple at the time that he composed his Sivananda Lahiri. Srisailam is located in Kurnool district.
Bhadrachalam Temple is a temple to Lord Rama in the town of Bhadrachalam in Khammam district. It is situated on the banks of the river Godavari. This is the place where Kancherla Gopanna (1620–1680) wrote his devotional songs dedicated to lord Rama. It was believed that lord Rama spent some years on the banks of river Godavari here in Treta Yuga. Kancherla Gopanna raised the funds and constructed the temple during the reign of Tanisha in the 17th century. Sri Rama Navami, a celebration of the Marriage of Lord Rama and sita, is celebrated here every year. Government of Andhra Pradesh sends pearls for the event.
Kanaka Durga Temple is a temple to the goddess Durga situated on the Indrakeeladri Hill in the city of Vijayawada on the banks of Krishna River. Special pujas are performed during Dasara, also called Navratri. The most significant are Saraswati puja and Theppotsavam. The festival of Dasara for the Goddess Durga is celebrated there every year. A large number of pilgrims attend the colourful celebrations and take a holy dip in the Krishna River.
Bapu's paintings, Nanduri Venkata Subba Rao's Yenki Paatalu (Songs about a washerwoman called Yenki), mischievous Budugu (a character by Mullapudi), Annamayya's songs, Aavakaaya (a variant of mango pickle in which the kernel of mango is retained), Gongura (a chutney from Roselle plant), Atla Taddi (a seasonal festival predominantly for teenage girls), the banks of river Godavari, and the Dudu basavanna (the ceremonial ox decorated for door-to-door exhibition during the harvest festival Sankranthi) have long defined Telugu culture. The village of Durgi is known for stone craft, producing carvings of idols in soft stone that must be exhibited in the shade because they are prone to weathering. Kalamkari is an ancient textile art form dating back to the Indus Valley Civilization. Andhra Pradesh is famous for doll making. Dolls are made from wood, mud, dry grass, and lightweight metal alloys. Tirupathi is famous for redwood carvings. Kondapalli is famous for mud toys with rich colors. The village of Etikoppaka, located in Visakhapatnam district, produces lacquered toys. Nirmal paintings are expressive and are usually painted over a black background. Story telling in Andhra Pradesh is an art form in itself. Folk dances unique to Andhra Pradesh include Yaksha ganam, Burra katha (usually done by three people, telling stories using three different musical instruments), Jangama kathalu, Hari kathalu, Chekka bajana, Urumula natyam (usually done at festivals, where a group of people dance in circles with loud music), and Ghata natyam (performances done with earthen pots over one's head).
Andhra Pradesh has many museums, the Salar Jung Museum in Hyderabad, which features a varied collection of sculptures, paintings, and religious artifacts, including the Archaeological Museum at Amaravati near Guntur City that features relics of nearby ancient sites, and the Visakha Museum, in Visakhapatnam, which displays the history of the pre-Independence and thotla konda which depicts the age old budhist stupa's and cultural style, Madras Presidency in a rehabilitated Dutch bungalow. Victoria Jubilee Museum in Vijayawada has a good collection of ancient sculptures, paintings, idols, weapons, cutlery and inscriptions. Other ancient sites include dozens of ancient Buddhist stupas in Nagarjunakonda which is now an island in Nagarjuna Sagar, an artificial lake that formed after the construction of Nagarjuna Sagar Dam. The Island has a large museum that houses many Buddhist relics.
Just like in other parts of the country, many festivals are celebrated in Andhra Pradesh, which include - Ugadi, Sankranthi, Dasara, Varalakshmi Vratham, Vinayaka Chavithi, Deepavali, Batukamma, Rakhi poornima, Christmas, Sri Rama Navami, Bonalu, Maha Shivaratri, Nagula Chaviti, Holi, Eid ul-Fitr, Eid al-Adha, Muharram, Milad-un-Nabi etc.
The cuisine of Andhra Pradesh is one of the spiciest of all Indian cuisines. There are many variations to the cuisine (all involving rice) depending on geographical regions, caste, and traditions. Pickles and chutneys, called thoku also called as pachadi in Telugu, are particularly popular in Andhra Pradesh and many varieties of pickles and chutneys are unique to the State. Chutneys are made from practically every vegetable including tomatoes, brinjals (eggplant), and roselle (Gongura).Avaakaya (mango) is probably the best known of the Andhra Pradesh pickles. Rice is the staple food and is used in a wide variety of ways. Typically, rice is either boiled and eaten with curry, or made into a batter for use in a crepe-like dish called attu (pesarattu is made of a mixture of this batter and mung beans) or dosas, a crepe filled with black beans or lentils.
Meat, vegetables and greens are prepared with different spices (masala) into a variety of strongly flavored dishes such as Hyderabadi Biryani, fish curry, brinjal curry, and Gongura pachadi the most popular dish of andhra pradesh.An Andhra dish is recognized with the dish being listed in the menu. The coastal region is even more well versed with the varieties in sea food specially known for "Chapala Pulusu", "Bommidala pulusu", "Koramenu kura". Especially Hyderabadi cuisine is influenced by the Muslims who arrived in Telangana in the 14th century. Much of the cuisine revolves around meat. It is rich and aromatic, with a liberal use of exotic spices and ghee (clarified butter). Lamb, chicken, and fish are the most widely used meats in the non-vegetarian dishes. Biriyani is perhaps the most distinctive and popular dish of Hyderabadi cuisine.
Classical dance in Andhra can be performed by both men and women; women tend to learn it more often. Kuchipudi is the state's best-known classical dance form. The various dance forms that existed through the state's history are Bonalu, Dappu, Chenchu Bhagotham, Kuchipudi, Bhamakalapam, Burrakatha, Veeranatyam, Butta bommalu, Tappeta Gullu, Lambadi, Dhimsa, Kolattam, and Chindu. Jaanapadam theenmar is a popular folk dance.
Jayapa Senani was the first person to write about the dances prevalent in Andhra Pradesh. Both Desi and Margi forms of dances are included in his Sanskrit treatise Nrutya Ratnavali.
Nannayya, Tikkana, and Yerrapragada form the trinity who translated the great Sanskrit epic Mahabharata into Telugu. Pothana is the poet who composed the classic SriMad Maha Bhagavatamu, a Telugu translation of Sri Bhagavatham, authored by Veda Vyasa in Sanskrit. Nannayya (c. 11th century AD), the earliest known Telugu author, was patronized by the king Rajaraja Narendra who ruled from Rajamahendravaram (now Rajahmundry). The Vijayanagara emperor Krishnadevaraya wrote Amuktamalyada. The Telugu poet Vemana, a native of Kadapa, is notable for his philosophical poems. Telugu literature after Kandukuri Veeresalingam (1848–1919) is termed modern literature. Known as Gadya Tikkana, Satyavathi Charitam was the author Telugu-language social novel, Satyavathi Charitam. Jnanpith Award winners include Sri Viswanatha Satya Narayana and Dr. C. Narayana Reddy. The Andhra Pradesh native and revolutionary poet Sri Sri brought new forms of expressionism into Telugu literature.
Other modern writers include Gunturu Seshendra Sarma, the only person nominated from India for a Nobel prize in literature since Rabindranath Tagore. The West Bengal Government conferred on him the title Rashtrendu ("Moon of the Nation"). Telugu University awarded him an honorary Doctorate in Literature in 1994. He received the Kalidas Samman award from the Madhya Pradhesh government, and he won the Central Sahitya Akademi fellowship in 1999. Puttaparthi Narayanacharyulu is one of the scholarly poets of Telugu literature. He wrote the books Sivatandavam and Panduranga Mahatyam. Other notable writers from Andhra Pradesh include Srirangam Sreenivasarao, Gurram Jashuva, Chinnaya Suri, Viswanatha Satyanarayana.
In the early 1980s, the Telugu film industry had largely shifted its base to Hyderabad from Madras. The Telugu film culture (or, "Tollywood") is the second-largest film industry in India. Hyderabad houses the Prasads IMAX theatre, which was the biggest 3D IMAX screen in the world when it was built in 2007. It is also home to Ramoji Film City which is the world’s largest integrated film studio complex at over 2,000 acres (809 ha) of land. Prolific film producer from the state, D. Ramanaidu holds a Guinness Record for the most number of films produced by a person. Andhra Pradesh has around 5500 cinema halls. The state produces about 200 films a year. It has around 40% (330 out of 930) of the Dolby Digital theatres in India.
The Telugu language film industry, being the second largest in India, in terms of market capitalization and infrastructure, holds a memorandum of understanding with Motion Picture Association of America to combat video piracy.   As per the CBFC report of 2010, the industry stood third in India, in terms of films produced yearly. The industry holds the Guinness World Record for the largest film production facility in the world
Many composers of Carnatic music like Annamacharya, Tyagaraja, Kshetrayya, and Bhadrachala Ramadas were of Telugu descent. Modern Carnatic music composers like Ghantasala and Sri M. Balamuralikrishna are also of Telugu descent. The Telugu film industry hosts many music composers and playback singers such as S. P. Balasubrahmanyam. Telugus have a large number of folk dances. Folk songs are popular in the many rural areas of the state. Forms such as the Burra katha and Poli are still performed today.
The Sports Authority of Andhra Pradesh, is the governing body which looks after the infrastructure development in Cricket, Field hockey, Association Football, Olympic weightlifting, Chess, Water Sports, Tennis, Badminton, Table Tennis, Cycling etc. Sports like kho kho, kabaddi, chinni daandu and goli (marbles) are played mostly in coastal Andhra & Telangana areas.
One of the most popular sports in Andhra pradesh is cricket. The Hyderabad Cricket Association nurtures potential international players. The Hyderabad cricket team has won the Ranji Trophy twice. The Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Hyderabad and ACA-VDCA Stadium in Visakhapatnam, regularly host international matches. The Deccan Chargers, an Indian Premier League franchise, is based in Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam.
Notable cricketers from Andhra Pradesh, include C. K. Nayudu, Maharajkumar of Vizianagram, M. V. Narasimha Rao, Mohammad Azharuddin, M. S. K. Prasad, V.V.S. Laxman, Tirumalasetti Suman, Arshad Ayub, Ambati Rayudu, Paul Valthaty, Venkatapathy Raju, Sravanthi Naidu, Yalaka Venugopal Rao etc.
Other accomplished sports-persons include, A. Ramana Rao, Karnam Malleswari, Pullela Gopichand, Sania Mirza, Saina Nehwal, Sharath Kamal, Chetan Anand (Badminton), Pradeep (Volley Ball), Mukesh Kumar (Hockey), Abdul Najeeb Qureshi, Jwala Gutta, Raman Subbarao, Kamineni Eswara Rao, etc. Grandmasters in Chess like, Koneru Humpy, Pendyala Harikrishna, Dronavalli Harika and Gogineni Rohit hail from the state.
Andhra Pradesh is served by more than 20 institutes of higher education. All major arts, humanities, science, engineering, law, medicine, business, and veterinary science are offered, with first degrees and postgraduate awards available. Advanced research is conducted in all major areas.
Andhra Pradesh has 1,330 arts, science and commerce colleges; 1,000 MBA and MCA colleges; 847 engineering colleges; 53 medical colleges, and one Indian Institute of Technology (in Hyderabad). The student to teacher ratio in higher education is 19:1. According to the 2001 census, Andhra Pradesh has an overall literacy rate of 61.11% (as per Andhra pradesh Govt's official website). The male literacy rate is 70.3% and the female literacy rate is 67.4%.
Andhra Pradesh is the home to Osmania University, it is one of the oldest modern universities in India. It is one of the largest university systems in the subcontinent with over 300,000 students on its various campuses and affiliated colleges. The Government of Andhra Pradesh has established Rajiv Gandhi University of Knowledge Technologies (RGUKT)</ref> in 2008 to cater to the educational needs of the gifted rural youth of Andhra Pradesh. The Institute specializes in teaching and research in Information Technology and other emerging disciplines under the control of a common university Governing Council and following a common syllabus.
The state has recently made strides in setting up several institutes. Andhra Pradesh is home to the Birla Institute of Technology and Science (Hyderabad Campus), Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Hyderabad, International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad (IIIT-H), National Institute of Technology NIT Warangal, the Nalsar University of Law, Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) Hyderabad, Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT), Hyderabad, University of Hyderabad, School of Planning and Architecture, Rajiv Gandhi University of Knowledge Technologies and the Indian School of Business (ISB). The National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) and The Institute of Hotel Management, Catering Technology and Applied Nutrition are also located in Hyderabad. Also Georgia Institute of Technology, is in the process of setting up their campus in Hyderabad.
Apart from this Andhra Pradesh is home to many more top class universities like English and Foreign Languages University, Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, Osmania University, Andhra University, Nagarjuna University, Kakatiya University, Sri Venkateswara University, Sri Krishnadevaraya University, Potti Sreeramulu Telugu University, Acharya N. G. Ranga Agricultural University, Telangana University Nizamabad, Mahathma Gandhi University Nalgonda, Palamur University Mahaboobnagar, Rayalaseema university, Kurnool, Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University(SVVU)(www.svvu.edu.in) and private engineering colleges like Sreenidhi Institute of Science and Technology, Muffakham Jah College of Engineering and Technology, Vasavi College of Engineering, Chaitanya Bharathi Institute of Technology, MVSR Engineering College, GRIET, Narasaraopeta Engineering College, to serve their people across Andhra Pradesh.
The Government of Andhra Pradesh has established the first University of Health Sciences, fulfilling the recommendations of several committees. The Andhra Pradesh University of Health Sciences was established by Act.No. 6 of the Andhra Pradesh legislature and was inaugurated in 1986 by the late Sri N.T. Rama Rao, then Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. After the death of its founder Sri N.T. Rama Rao the University was named after him as NTR University of Health Sciences, Andhra Pradesh.
Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) is the major public transport corporation owned by the government of Andhra Pradesh that connects all the cities and villages. APSRTC is in the Guinness Book of World Records for having the largest fleet of vehicles (approximately 21,000), and the longest distance covered daily.Mahatma Gandhi Bus Station[M.G.B.S] in Hyderabad and Nehru Bus stand in Vijayawada are among the largest bus stands in the state. Thousands of private operators also run buses connecting major cities and towns. Private vehicles like cars, motorised scooters, and bicycles occupy a major share of the local transport in the cities and adjoining villages.
The hans of India
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