Maharashtra (/məhɑːˈrɑːʃtrə/; Marathi: [məharaːʂʈɾə] (listen), abbr. MH or Maha) is a state in the western peninsular region of India occupying a substantial portion of the Deccan Plateau. Maharashtra is the second-most populous state in India and the second-most populous country subdivision globally. It was formed on 1 May 1960 by splitting the bilingual Bombay State, which had existed since 1956, into majority Marathi-speaking Maharashtra and Gujarati-speaking Gujarat. Maharashtra is home to the Marathi people, the predominant ethno-linguistic group, who speak the Marathi language, the official language of the state. The state is divided into 6 divisions and 36 districts, with the state capital being Mumbai, the most populous urban area in India, and Nagpur serving as the winter capital, which also hosts the winter session of the state legislature.[10] Godavari and Krishna are the two major rivers in the state. Forests cover 16.47 per cent of the state's geographical area. Out of the total cultivable land in the state, about 60 per cent is used for grain crops in the Deccan region, rice in coastal Konkan, and other high rainfall areas.

Pratipaccandralēkhēva vardhiṣṇurviśva vanditā Mahārāṣṭrasya rājyasya mudrā bhadrāya rājatē
The glory of Maharashtra will grow like the first day moon. It will be worshipped by the world and will shine only for the well-being of people
Anthem: Jai Jai Maharashtra Maza
Location of Maharashtra in India
Coordinates (Mumbai): 18.97°N 72.82°E / 18.97; 72.82
Formation1 May 1960^ (Maharashtra Day)
Capitals1) Mumbai
2) Nagpur (Winter)[1]
Largest cityMumbai
  BodyGovernment of Maharashtra
  GovernorBhagat Singh Koshyari
  Chief MinisterEknath Shinde
  Deputy Chief MinisterDevendra Fadnavis
  Parliamentary constituency
  Total307,713 km2 (118,809 sq mi)
  Density370/km2 (950/sq mi)
GSDP (2022–23;est)
  Total35.81 trillion (US$450 billion)[3][4]
  Per capita225,073 (US$2,800)
Time zoneUTC+05:30 (IST)
ISO 3166 codeIN-MH
Vehicle registrationMH
HDI (2019) 0.697[7]
Literacy (2017)84.8%
Sex ratio (2011)929 /1000
Symbols of Maharashtra
EmblemSeal of Maharashtra
Song"Jai Jai Maharashtra Maza" by Raja Badhe[8]
^The State of Bombay was split into two States i.e. Maharashtra and Gujarat by the Bombay Reorganisation Act 1960[9]
†† Common high court

Spread over 307,713 km2 (118,809 sq mi), Maharashtra is the third-largest state by area in India. It is bordered by the Arabian Sea to the west, the Indian states of Karnataka and Goa to the south, Telangana to the southeast and Chhattisgarh to the east, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh to the north, and the Indian union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu to the northwest.[11] The state has three international airports, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (Mumbai), Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport (Nagpur), and Pune Airport. The state is home to three railways headquarters viz. Central Railway (Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus), Konkan Railway (CBD Belapur), and Western Railway (Churchgate). The High Court of the state viz. Bombay High Court is located in Mumbai. The state contributes 48 seats and 19 seats to the lower house Lok Sabha and the upper house Rajya Sabha, respectively. Maharashtra has been subject to President's rule three times since its formation for a total of 156 days for different reasons. More than three-fourths of the population practice Hinduism, which is followed by Islam and Buddhism. The state is home to four UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Ajanta, Ellora and Elephanta caves, and the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (formerly Victoria Terminus).

Maharashtra is one of the most industrialised states in India. The state's capital, Mumbai is India's financial and commercial capital.[12] India's largest stock exchange Bombay Stock Exchange, the oldest in Asia, is located in the city. The state has played a significant role in the country's social and political life and is widely considered a leader in terms of agricultural and industrial production, trade and transport, and education.[13] Maharashtra is among the most developed Indian states and continues to be the single largest contributor to the national economy with a share of 14 per cent in all-India nominal GDP.[14] The economy of Maharashtra is the largest in India, with a gross state domestic product (GSDP) of 35.81 trillion (US$450 billion) and GSDP per capita of 225,073 (US$2,800).[15] The service sector dominates state's economy, accounting for 69.3 per cent of the value of the output of the country. Although agriculture accounts for 12 per cent of the state GDP, it employs nearly half the population of the state. Maharashtra is the fifteenth-highest ranking among Indian states in the human development index.

The region that encompasses the state has a history going back many millennia. Prior to Indian independence, notable dynasties and entities that ruled the region include in a chronologial order, the Maurya, the Western Satraps, the Satavahana dynasty, Rashtrakuta dynasty, Western Chalukyas, the Bahamanis, Deccan sultanates, Mughals, the Maratha Empire founded by Shivaji, and the British. Ruins, monuments, tombs, forts, and places of worship left by these rulers are dotted around the state. At the time of the Indian independence movement in the early 20th century, along with British ruled areas of Bombay presidency, and Central Provinces and Berar, the region included many British Vassal states. Among these, the erstwhile Hyderabad state was the largest and extended over many modern Indian states. Other states grouped under Deccan States Agency included Kolhapur, Miraj, Sangli, Aundh, Bhor, and Sawantwadi.

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