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Madhya Pradesh

Madhya Pradesh is a state/Union Territory of India.

Madhya Pradesh is a state in central India. It was originally the largest state in India. On November 1, 2000, the state of Chhattisgarh was carved out. Its capital is Bhopal. Madhya Pradesh means middle province, and it is located in the geographic heart of India. Narmada River runs east and west between the Vindhya and Satpura ranges. These ranges and the Narmada are the traditional boundary between the north and south of India. The state is bordered on the west by Gujarat, on the northwest by Rajasthan, on the northeast by Uttar Pradesh, on the east by Chhattisgarh, and on the south by Maharashtra.

Madhya Pradesh comprises several linguistically and culturally distinct regions, including: 1) Malwa: a plateau region in the northwest of the state, north of the Vindhya Range. Indore is the major city of the region, while Bhopal lies on the edge of Bundelkhand region. 2) Nimar (Nemar): the western portion of the Narmada River valley, lying south of the Vindhyas in the southwest portion of the state. 3) Bundelkhand: a region of rolling hills and fertile valleys in the northern part of the state, which slopes down toward the Indo-Gangetic plain to the north. Gwalior is an historic center of the region. 4) Mahakoshal (Mahakaushal): the southeastern portion of the state, which includes the eastern end of the Narmada river valley and the eastern Satpuras. Jabalpur is the most important city in the region. Madhya Pradesh state districts are grouped into seven divisions: Bhopal, Gwalior, Indore, Jabalpur, Rewa, Sagar, and Ujjain.

Madhya Pradesh occupies perhaps the oldest part of the subcontinent. Close to Bhopal at Bhimbetka are the pre-historic caves that preserve some fascinating paintings dating back to Paleolithic times. uring the ascendancy of the Guptas the whole region came under the domain of the imperial Guptas and subsequently formed part of Harshvardhan's empire. Chandels were one dynasty who carved out a strong prosperous kingdom for themselves after the decline of the great empire. They are the ones who have built world famous temples at Khajuraho. handels were followed by Pratihara and Gaharwar Rajput dynasties. Rulers of Malwa fought a running battle with the subedars of Gujarat or the commanders of the Sultan of Delhi throughout the sultanate period. The grand Moghul Akbar succeeded in subduing most of them and his sterner grandson Aurangzeb broke through the last pockets of resistance in this region. In course of time the Marathas were replaced by the British who entered into treaty relationships with these princely states and established paramountcy over them. This was the Raj period when the Central Provinces were left for the large part outside developments in British India.

Madhya Pradesh was created in 1950 from the former British Central Provinces and Berar and the princely states of Makrai and Chhattisgarh, with Nagpur as the capital of the state. In 1956, the states of Madhya Bharat, Vindhya Pradesh, and Bhopal, made up of former princely states, were merged into it, and it lost the Marathi-speaking southern region Vidarbha, which included Nagpur, to Bombay state. Bhopal became the new capital. In November 2000, as part of the Madhya Pradesh Reorganization Act, the southeastern portion of the state split off to form the new state of Chhattisgarh.

Several cities in Madhya Pradesh are extraordinary for their architecture and or scenic beauty. Three sites in Madhya Pradesh have been declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO: The Khajuraho Group of Monuments (1986), Buddhist Monuments at Sanchi (1989) and the Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka (2003). Other architecturally significant or scenic sites include Asirgarh, Bhopal, Dhar, Gwalior, Indore, Maheshwar, Mandu, Orchha, Pachmarhi, Shivpuri and Ujjain.

Madhya Pradesh is home to several National Parks, including Bandhavgarh National Park, Kanha National Park, Satpura National Park, Ranthambore National Park, Madhav National Park, Van Vihar National Park, Fossil National Park, Panna National Park, and Pench National Park. There are also a number of nature preserves, including Bagh Caves, Bori, Pachmarhi, Panpatha, Shikarganj, Ken Gharial, Ghatigaon, Kuno Palpur, Narwar, Chambal, Kukdeshwar, Narsinghgarh, and Nora Dehi.

The predominant language of the region is Hindi. In addition to standard Hindi, several regional variants are spoken, which are considered by some to be dialects of Hindi, and by others to be distinct but related languages. Among these languages are Malvi in Malwa, Nimadi in Nimar, Bundeli in Bundelkhand, and Bagheli in Bagelkhand and the southeast. Each of these languages or dialects has dialects of its own. Other languages include Bhilodi (Bhili), Gondi and the isolate Nahali, all spoken by tribal groups. Due to rule of Marathas, Marathi is spoken by a substantial number of people.