Himachal is a state of India located in Northern India. It is bordered by Jammu and Kashmir on the north, Punjab and Chandigarh on the west, Haryana on the south-west, Uttarakhand on the south-east and by the Tibet Autonomous Region on the east. The name was coined from Sanskrit him ‘snow’ and anchal ‘lap’, by Acharya Diwakar Datt Sharma, one of the state’s most eminent Sanskrit scholars.
Himachal Pradesh is famous for its natural beauty, hill stations, and temples. Himachal Pradesh has been ranked fifteenth in the list of the highest per capita incomes of Indian states and union territories for year 2013-14. Many perennial rivers flow in the state, and numerous hydroelectric projects set up.
Himachal produces surplus hydroelectricity and sells it to other states such as Delhi, Punjab, and Rajasthan. Hydroelectric power projects, tourism, and agriculture form important parts of the state’s economy.
Shimla district has maximum urban population of 25%. It has incorporated environmental protection and tourism development has been aided with a government ban on the use of polyethylene bags, reducing litter, and tobacco products, to aid people’s health.
The era of planning in Himachal Pradesh started in 1948 along with the rest of India. The first five-year plan allocated 52.7 million to Himachal. More than 50% of this expenditure was incurred on road construction since it was felt that without proper transport facilities, the process of planning and development could not be carried to the people, who mostly lived an isolated existence in faraway areas. Himachal now ranks fourth in per capita income among the states of the Indian Union.
Agriculture contributes over 45% to the net state domestic product. It is the main source of income and employment in Himachal. Over 93% of the population in Himachal depends directly upon agriculture, which provides direct employment to 71% of its people. The main cereals grown are wheat, maize, rice and barley. Apple is the principal cash crop of the state grown principally in the districts of Shimla, Kinnaur, Kullu, Mandi, Chamba and some parts of Sirmaur and Lahaul-Spiti with an average annual production of 5 lakh tonnes and per hectare production of 8 to 10 tonnes.
Himachal has a rich heritage of handicrafts. These include woolen and pashmina shawls, carpets, silver and metal ware, embroidered chappals, grass shoes, Kangra and Gompa style paintings, wood work, horse-hair bangles, wooden and metal utensils and various other houses hold items.
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