Indore, "The Mini Mumbai" of Madhya Pradesh

History of Indore

Indore has historical significance because it was located on the ancient pilgrimage route from Mahakaal at Ujjain to Omkareshwar and then to Rameshwaram. So, the pilgrims used to stop and take rest in Indore while on their way to Rameshwaram. During the medieval times, this city was accorded prominence largely because of its strategic location between the Maratha kingdoms of the west and the Mughal North India. The Maratha attackers and guerilla fighters stationed their troops and rebels in nearby areas, resulting in local landlords establishing markets and trade centers around 1720.

This trading hub expanded rapidly during the Holkar dynasty that existed between 1733 and 1818. Similar to the princely state of Bhopal, Indore also became a royal state, when the British army defeated the Holkars in 1818. Rani of Indore survived as a submissive head of the state to the East India Company after the humiliating treaty of Mandsaur. In free India, Indore became the summer capital of the former Madhya Bharat state till 1956. It is also hailed as the commercial capital of Madhya Pradesh.

Indore as a Metropolitan City

Indore is 200 km west of capital Bhopal and has a population of around 20 lakhs. Therefore, it is 14th most populous city in India. The greater metropolitan area of Indore makes it a city of 2.5 million inhabitants. It is industrial, cosmopolitan and prosperous and resembles Mumbai as far as the lifestyle is concerned. It is also a melting pot of different ethnic groups such as Marathi, Gujarati, Marwari, Muslims and Sindhi etc. It is also an educational hub and home to both an IIT and an IIM, the most reputed technological and management institutes of India.

Attractions and Peculiarities

When Marathas were reining in this area, Indore was an important link between the southern and northern parts of the country. But when Marathas lost power, Indore came under Holkar rule. Its architecture is also a kaleidoscope of different cultures, as the gates of Lalbagh Palace look much like the gates of Buckingham Palace, London. In fact these gates were made in Britain before being shipped to Indore. You will also find a huge concrete cricket bat statue in Indore, inscribed with the names of famous Indian cricketers of the 70s. Indore has some unique records to its name; such as Rajwada is the only seven storeyed entrance of a palace. Indore houses the Center for Advanced Technology (CAT), which is India's leading research center on laser technology. Indore is also a hub of software export and development and some of the most aggressive export companies are located here.

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