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Uttarakhand, also known as ‘Devbhumi’ (Land of Gods), is a state located in Northern India. The society of the state is a heterogeneous mix of different ethnic groups from Garhwal and Kumaon regions. Music is an important element of the culture of the state and people sing folk songs during the time of celebrations and festivities. The state festivals celebrated here are Ghee Sankranti, Khatarua, Nanda Devi Mela, Phool Dei and many others. Uttarakhand offers immense options for tourism to the visitors – hill stations, pilgrimages, wildlife sanctuaries and national parks.

Uttarakhand (English: /ˈʊtərəˌkʌnd/,[23] /ˌʊtərəˈkʌnd/[24] or /ˌʊtəˈrækɑːnd/;[25] Hindi: [‘ʊt̪ːəraːkʰəɳɖ], lit. ‘Northern Land’), formerly known as Uttaranchal (English: /ˈʊtəˈrænʌl/),[26] is a state in the northern part of India. It is often referred to as the “Devbhumi” (literally “Land of the Gods”)[27] due to numerous Hindu temples and pilgrimage centres found throughout the state. Uttarakhand is known for the natural environment of the Himalayas, the Bhabar and the Terai regions. It borders the Tibet Autonomous Region of China to the north; the Sudurpashchim Pradesh of Nepal to the east; the Indian states of Uttar Pradesh to the south and Himachal Pradesh to the west and north-west. The state is divided into two divisions, Garhwal and Kumaon with a total of 13 districts. The winter capital of Uttarakhand is Dehradun, the largest city of the state, which is a rail head. Gairsain, a town in Chamoli district is the summer capital of Uttarakhand.[28][29][30] The High Court of the state is located in Nainital.


The native people of Uttarakhand are generally called Uttarakhandi and sometimes specifically either Garhwali or Kumaoni depending on their place of origin in either the Garhwal or Kumaon region. According to the 2011 Census of India, Uttarakhand has a population of 10,086,292 comprising 5,137,773 males and 4,948,519 females, with 69.77% of the population living in rural areas. The state is the 20th most populous state of the country having 0.83% of the population on 1.63% of the land. The population density of the state is 189 people per square kilometre having a 2001–2011 decadal growth rate of 18.81%. The gender ratio is 963 females per 1000 males.[32][59][60] The crude birth rate in the state is 18.6 with the total fertility rate being 2.3. The state has an infant mortality rate of 43, a maternal mortality rate of 188 and a crude death rate of 6.6.[61]

There are 13 districts in Uttarakhand, which are grouped into two divisions, Kumaon and Garhwal. Each division is administered by a divisional commissioner. Four new districts named DidihatKotdwarRanikhet, and Yamunotri were declared by then Chief Minister of Uttarakhand, Ramesh Pokhriyal, on 15 August 2011 but yet to be officially formed.[72]

DistrictDivisionhidePopulation in 2011 Census[63]
Pauri Garhwal (also known as “Pauri”)Garhwal687,271
Tehri Garhwal (also known as “Tehri”)Garhwal618,931
Udham Singh NagarKumaon1,648,902

Each district is administered by a district magistrate. The districts are further divided into sub-divisions, which are administered by sub-divisional magistrates; sub-divisions comprise tehsils which are administered by a tehsildar and community development blocks, each administered by a block development officer.

Urban areas are categorised into three types of municipalities based on their population; municipal corporations, each administered by a municipal commissionermunicipal councils and, nagar panchayats (town councils), each of them administered by a chief executive officerRural areas comprise the three tier administration; district councilsblock panchayats (block councils) and gram panchayats (village councils).

According to the 2011 census, Haridwar, Dehradun, and Udham Singh Nagar are the most populous districts, each of them having a population of over one million.


The Uttarakhand state is the second fastest growing state in India.[87] Its gross state domestic product (GSDP) (at constant prices) more than doubled from ₹24,786 crore in FY2005 to ₹60,898 crore in FY2012. The real GSDP grew at 13.7% (CAGR) during the FY2005–FY2012 period. The contribution of the service sector to the GSDP of Uttarakhand was just over 50% during FY 2012. Per capita income in Uttarakhand is ₹ 198738 (FY 2018–19), which is higher than the national average of ₹ 126406 (FY 2018–19).[88][89] According to the Reserve Bank of India, the total foreign direct investment in the state from April 2000 to October 2009 amounted to US$46.7 million.[90]

Like most of India, agriculture is one of the most significant sectors of the economy of Uttarakhand. Basmati rice, wheat, soybeans, groundnuts, coarse cereals, pulses, and oil seeds are the most widely grown crops. Fruits like apples, oranges, pears, peaches, lychees, and plums are widely grown and important to the large food processing industry. Agricultural export zones have been set up in the state for lychees, horticulture, herbs, medicinal plants, and basmati rice. During 2010, wheat production was 831 thousand tonnes and rice production was 610 thousand tonnes, while the main cash crop of the state, sugarcane, had a production of 5058 thousand tonnes. As 86% of the state consists of hills, the yield per hectare is not very high. 86% of all croplands are in the plains while the remaining is from the hills.[91] The state also holds the GI tag for Tejpatta (Cinnamomum tamala) or Indian bay leaf, which is known to add flavour to dishes and also possesses several medicinal properties.[92]