Nagpur is a city within the state of Maharashtra. It houses the Vidarbha division and serves as the second capital of the state, next to Pune.
The city is also famous for its Nagpur oranges.
Nagpur was originally known as Fanindrapura from “fana” meaning hood of a cobra. The name Nagpur was said to be derived from the combination of “Nag” and “pur.” Since the Nag River flows through the area, its inhabitants were called Nag people. The word “pur” generally translates to “city” in majority of Indian languages.
The city dates back to the 3rd century when it was under the rule of Rastrakuta king Krsna III. By the turn of the 4th century, Nagpur was ruled by the Vakataka Dynasty. It was during this time that the region forged a good relationship with the Gupta Empire. After several changes in power, Nagpur was consumed by flames when it was burned in 1765 and 1811 by Pindaris.
Nagpur was eventually lost to the British who placed Raghoji III Bhonsale to the throne under British control.
When India regained its independence in 1947, Nagpur was moved to the Bombay state. Nagpur was then annexed to Maharashtra when the Bombay state was divided in 1960.
Nagpur has a population of 2,405,665 based on the 2011 census. Spanning a total area of 1,460 square miles, it has a population density of 29,000 per square mile.
Locals are referred to as Nagpurians.
The official language is Marathi. But Hindi is commonly used in everyday conversations. As it is heavily influenced by its neighboring states, Nagpurian’s Marathi has a slightly different twist compared to those spoken in Pune. Some locals speak a combination of Hindi and Marathi. Educated residents generally speak English.
By Indian standards, Nagpur has a high literacy rate of 91.92%. This can be attributed to the fact that Nagpur also attracts a number of students.
There are a number of cultural events celebrated in Nagpur. Many cultural and literary societies organize events and conferences to let the Marathi Literature flourish in this rapidly changing time. Cultural events like the Folk Dance Festival, City Craft Mela and Vidarbha are also heavily sponsored by the South Central Cultural Center.
The city also celebrates the conversion ceremony of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar to Buddhism during the Vijayadashami. The event is celebrated in Deekshabhoomi stupa.
Nagpur also has a rich arts culture as evidenced by the prevailing painting tradition. Various murals and illustrated manuscripts depict the festivals in the city. The community also has a thriving textile industry with silk sarees woven with silk thread as the main product.
Nagpur food scene is dominated by the distinctive spicy cuisine of Saoji or Varhadi. Food is prepared using special spices like dry coriander, black pepper, grey cardamom, bay leaves, cinnamon and poppy seeds.
Since Nagpur oranges are popular in the region, many of the meals are also prepared with oranges as its main ingredient.
Tarri Poha is also a favorite meal served in many food joints. Other local favorites include Samosas and Patodi and Kadhi.
Dhaba culture is also prominent in Nagpur. Many Dhabas are built along the outskirts and are open 24 hours daily.
The climate of Nagpur is classified as tropical savannah, with dry seasons throughout the year. Summers can be extremely hot. It starts from March and ends in June, with peaks during May.
The city receives only little rain from June to August, with peaks during July.
Winter approaches by November and lasts until January, with temperature dropping to 50 °F.
There are various ways of getting around the city. One of the most popular public transports is the yellow and black metered auto-rickshaws.
Nagpur Railway Station is one of the busiest modes of transport in Nagpur. More than 260 trains make their stops that the station. Nagpur Metro Rail, upon its completion, is also expected to improve road traffic in the region.
Airports and railway stations often have metered taxis. Local buses are also available.
Places of Interest
A melting pot of various cultures and a city with a rich historical background, Nagpur has many interesting places to visit. This includes:
- Ambazari Lake
- Balaji Mandir
- Deekshabhoomi Stupa
- Dhama Chakra Stupa
- Fhutala Lake
- Japanese Rose Garden
- Khindsi Watersports
- Maharaja Baug & Zoo
- Ramter Fort Temple
- RHAMDHAM Cultural Theme Park
- Seminary Hill
- Shabuldi Fort
- Shri Vyankatesh Temple
- Shukravati Lake
- Sri Poddareshwar Ram Mandir
- Telankadi Lake