These hilly landlocked forested states at the east tip of India, share a common topography, with lush green valleys, rugged mountains and rich bio diversity, though within each there are multi-ethnic tribal communities with their own culture and languages. Each of the states in north east India touches an international boundary. Sikkim shares it with three-China, Nepal, and Bhutan; Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh with China and Myanmar; Nagaland and Manipur share it with Myanmar; Meghalaya and Tripura with Bangladesh; and Assam with Bhutan. International and domestic tourism is restricted in the strategically important border areas and in ecologically vulnerable ones.
Cradle of biodiversity
Himalayan states of Sikkim and Arunachal have a cold climate while the rest on the gentle Purvachal ranges have hot humid summers, severe monsoons and mild winters. The Brahmaputra flows down scenic valleys to the plains of Assam and Tripura. Home to some of the wettest spots in the world and the last remaining rain forests in India, the states have numerous national parks and wild life sanctuaries supporting extremely rare and endangered species of animals, birds and vegetation. The Namdapha national park in Arunachal has snow leopards, Indian bison, and Great Indian Hornbill; Kaziranga national park, and the world heritage Manas National park in Assam are abode of the one horned Rhino, Royal Bengal tiger, elephants, deer among other species.
Political aspirations of the people forced the creation of separate states. Between 1960 and 1987 Nagaland, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Arunachal divided from Assam. Main tribal groups which include Abors of Assam, Garos and Khasis of Meghalaya, Kukis of Manipur, Lushais of Tripura, Angami, Ao and Phom of Nagaland, and Lepchas of Sikkim speak countless unique Tibeto-burmese languages. Bengali, Assamese and Manipuri, Mizo and English too are spoken. Agriculture is the main occupation with wide spread tea estates and rice fields. A cottage industry of handlooms also thrives.
Though these states have immense tourism potential, difficult access, insurgency, and lack of infrastructure has made them one of the least developed areas in India. Assam, the most populous state has places of scenic beauty in and around its capital Dispur and Guwahati , which also has the ancient Kamakhya and Kamdev temples.
Last Updated on 4/17/2012
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