Hyderabad pronunciation is the capital city of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Greater Hyderabad has an estimated metropolitan population of 6.7 million, making it an A-1 status city and the second largest(in terms of area) in the country. It is also the fifth most populous metropolitan area. Hyderabad is known for its rich history, culture and architecture representing its unique character as a meeting point for North and South India, and its multilingual culture, both geographically and culturally.
Also known as The City of Nizams, Hyderabad is today one of the most developed cities in the country and a modern hub of information technology, ITES, and biotechnology.
Sultan Quli Qutb Mulk was the founder of the Qutb Shahi dynasty, the ruling family
of the Golconda. The dynasty, previously a feudatory of
Bahmani sultanate, declared independence in 1512. Muhammad
Quli Qutb Shah, a ruler of the dynasty, founded the city
of Hyderabad on the banks of the Musi River in 1591; This
relocation was intended to relieve a water shortage the
dynasty had experienced at their old headquarters at Golconda.
He also ordered the construction of the Charminar, the iconic
monument of the city, in 1591, reportedly in gratitude to
the Almighty for arresting the plague epidemic before it
did irreversible damage to his new city.
As Qutb Shahi power and fortune rose during the 16th and early 17th centuries, Hyd became a center of a vibrant diamond trade. Golconda diamond mines are the birth place of the most famous diamonds in the world viz. Darya-ye Noor, Hope Diamond and importantly Koh-i-Noor, the crown jewel of Queen Elizabeth. They contributed to the growth and development of Indo-Persian and Indo-Islamic literature and culture in Hyderabad. Some of the sultans were known as patrons of local Telugu culture as well. In the 16th century the city grew to accommodate the surplus population of Golconda and eventually became the capital of the Qutb Shahi rulers. Hyderabad became known for its gardens (called baghs in vernacular) and its comfortable climate.
Mughal emperor Aurangzeb captured Hyderabad in 1687 and during this short Mughal rule, the fortune of Hyderabad declined. Soon, the Mughal-appointed governors of the city gained more autonomy. In 1724, Asaf Jah I, who was granted the title Nizam-ul-Mulk ("Governor of the country") by the Mughal emperor, defeated a rival official to establish control over Hyderabad. Thus began the Asaf Jahi dynasty that ruled Hyderabad until a year after India's independence from Britain. Asaf Jah's successors ruled as the Nizams of Hyderabad. The rule of the seven Nizams saw the growth of Hyderabad both culturally and economically. Hyderabad became the formal capital of the kingdom and Golconda, the former capital, was all but abandoned. Huge reservoirs, like the Nizam Sagar, Tungabhadra, Osman Sagar, Himayat Sagar, and others were built. Survey work on Nagarjuna Sagar had also begun during this time; the actual work was completed by the Government of India in 1969. The wealth and grandeur of the Nizams is demonstrated by the fabled Jewels of The Nizams which is a tourist attraction.
After the Indian independence in 1947, under the terms of independence from the British, the Nizam opted for independence or accession to the newly created Pakistan. India, then, implemented an economic blockade and forced Hyderabad state to sign a Standstill Agreement with the Indian Union. On September 17, 1948, more than a year after India had gained independence, the Nizam signed the Instrument of Accession to the Indian Union.
On November 1, 1956, the states of India were reorganized on linguistic grounds. The territories of the State of Hyderabad were divided between newly created Andhra Pradesh, Bombay state (later Maharashtra), and Karnataka. Hyderabad and the surrounding areas were added to Andhra Pradesh, based on the Telugu speaking community. Thus, Hyderabad became the capital city of the new state of Andhra Pradesh.
Lately, the city has been subject to severe social tensions, as revealed in the aftermath of the 18 May 2007 Mecca Masjid bombing which soon was followed by the 25 August 2007 Hyderabad bombings.
Hyderabad is the financial and economic capital of the state. The city is the largest contributor to the state's gross domestic product, state tax and excise revenues. The workforce participation is about 29 percent. Starting in the 1990s, the economic pattern of the city has changed from being a primarily service city to being one with a more diversified spectrum, including trade, transport, commerce, storage, communication etc. Service industry is the major contributor, with urban workforce constituting 90% of the total workforce.
Hyderabad is known as the city of pearls, lakes and, lately, for its IT companies. The pearl market known as Laad Bazaar is situated near Charminar. Ornaments made with Rice Pearls can be bought from Char Kaman or the General Bazaar market. Products such as silverware, saris, Nirmal and Kalamkari paintings and artifacts, unique Bidri handcrafted items, lacquer bangles studded with stones, silk-ware, cotton-ware and handloom-based clothing materials are made and traded through the city for centuries.
Andhra Pradesh inherited from the State of Hyderabad great academic institutes and research labs, both public and private institutes with very diverse areas of interest. The infrastructural facilities for basic research in Hyderabad are some of the best in the country, hosting a large academic population from all over the country and beyond.
Hyderabad is a major centre for pharmaceuticals with companies such as Dr. Reddy's Laboratories, Matrix Laboratories, Hetero Drugs Limited, Divis Labs, Aurobindo Pharma Limited and Vimta Labs being housed in the city. Initiatives such as Genome Valley and the Nanotechnology park are expected to create extensive infrastructure in bio-technology.
Like many Indian cities, Hyderabad has witnessed a remarkable growth in the real estate business, thanks to a predominantly information-technology-driven boom in the 1990s and the retail industry growth over the last few years which have spurred hectic commercial activity. A number of mega malls have come up or are being built in the city. Real Estate demand in the suburban and rural areas surrounding Hyderabad has gone up exponentially leading to reckless increase in prices over the past few years.
For the advancement of infrastructure in the city,the government is building a skyscraper business district at Manchirevula with a 450m supertall APIIC Tower at its centre which upon completion will be the tallest building in India.
The Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation runs a fleet of 19,000 buses, the largest in the world. Hyderabad has the third largest bus station facility in Asia, with 72 platforms for 72 buses to load passengers at a time. Officially named as the Mahatma Gandhi Bus Station, it is locally known as the Imlibun Bus Station. The APSRTC operates point to point bus services which connect important places within the city. There are more than 4000 buses in the city running the point to point service.The yellow colored Rickshaw usually referred to as an "auto", is the most widely used transport/ taxi service.
Hyderabad is connected to the rest of the country by National Highways—NH-7, NH-9 and NH-202. Like other cities, Hyderabad suffers from traffic congestion. Several flyovers have been built to ease the congestion. An inner ring road going around Hyderabad within the city limits and outer ring road is proposed to make travel in the city easier. The Hyderabad Metro is under construction and will ease up traffic in the city. The Metro will travel three different routes, extending to the outskirts in the second phase of its construction.
Hyderabad has a combination of light rail transportation system known as the MultiModal Transport System (MMTS) and suburban railway system which offer connectivity between rail and road transport for the facility of the commuters. The South Central Railway headquarters are located at Secunderabad. The three main railway stations are Secunderabad Railway Station, Hyderabad Railway Station (Nampally) and Kachiguda Railway Station.
The Begumpet Airport has domestic and international terminals operating flights to other cities and destinations across India and the world. There has been an unprecedented increase in the number of passengers leading to increased air traffic. The present airport with moderate services is unable to cope up with the situation. The Rajiv Gandhi International Airport will start operations in March. The new international airport with state-of-the-art facilities and environs is under construction at Shamshabad. When completed the airport is believed to have the longest runway among other airports in the country and would be able to cater to the high passenger and flight transits.
Hyderabad has been the meeting place of many different cultures and traditions. Historically, Hyderabad has been the city where distinct cultural and linguistic traditions of North India and South India meet. It is thus considered as the gateway to the South or gateway to the North. Hyderabad is a cosmopolitan city and home to people practicing many religions. Hyderabadis, as residents of the city are known, have developed a distinctive culture which is a mixture of ancient Hindu traditions of Telugu people and Islamic Culture.
Telugu, Urdu and Hindi are the principal languages spoken in Hyderabad. Both Urdu and Telugu have linguistically impacted on each other in this region. The Telugu spoken here has assimilated many Urdu words into it. And the Urdu spoken here is also unique, with influences of Telugu and Marathi, giving rise to a dialect sometimes called Hyderabadi Urdu or Deccani.The Telugu spoken in Hyderabad and rest of Telangana prior to formation of the present state of Andhra Pradesh was very distinct from the one spoken in coastal Andhra. A large percentage of the population is also well-versed in English.
One of Hyderabad's popular public carnivals is the annual immersion of Lord Ganesh idols after the 10 day Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations on Ananta Chaturdashi (locally known as the Ganesh Nimajjnanam). Bonalu is another vernacular festival which is celebrated with great fervour. Another is the procession of Muharram which takes place every year 10th Muharram (1st month of Islamic calendar). While this event is mourned throughout the Shia Muslim world particularly, the old city of Hyderabad is known for its grand procession in which participants sacrifice their own blood by hitting on their heads, chest and back with sharp edge weapons (knives, swords and knives attached to chains).
Hyderabadi cuisine is a blend of Mughal, Persian and Telugu cuisine. Hyderabadi Biryani is an iconic dish of the region. Other culinary delights include Qubani ka Mitha, Double Ka Mitha (a sweet made with bread), Phirni (a sweet vermicelli delicacy eaten during the festival of Deepawali, Nahari Kulche also known as paya and Haleem (a meat dish traditionally eaten during the holy month of Ramzan).Indian mithai (sweet) shops are popular for their ghee-based sweets. Mozamjahi Market located in Nampally, is known for its fruit biscuits and the sweet Dil Khush. A family residing in Azeez Bagh palace in the old part of the city is famous for the preparation of badaam ki jaali (Almond lattice confection). Also widely found on street-corners are cafes that offer Irani chai, Irani samosa and Osmania biscuit. Irani cafés are once again becoming popular.