On January 25, 1971, the Himachal Pradesh Statehood Act was passed to become the eighteenth state of the Republic of India. The word Himachal is derived from the Sanskrit words “Hima” and “anchal”, which mean “snow” and “lap” respectively. The state of Himachal Pradesh is situated in the lap of the Himalayas. The state consisted of four districts, Mandi, Chamba, Mahasu, and Sirmaur, along with 30 princely states, which led to the formation of Himachal Pradesh as a Union Territory in 1948. Shimla is the summer capital of Himachal Pradesh, and Dharamshala is the winter capital of the state.
The total area of Himachal Pradesh is 55,673 square kilometers. Himachal Pradesh is considered the land of the gods. The state is mentioned in several ancient Hindu texts. The local people of each village in this state have their own distinct customs and gods and goddesses. Himachal Pradesh has 68 assembly seats and 4 Lok Sabha seats in the state. The number of Rajya Sabha seats from Himachal Pradesh is 3. And there are 5 National Parks. The spoken languages in Himachal Pradesh are Hindi and Pahari.
Some Interesting Facts that you must know about Himachal Pradesh:
- Yashwant Singh Parmar was the first Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh.
- Virbhadra Singh Ji was the chief minister with the longest tenure in the state. He was in office for 21 years and 11 days.
- Himachal was named by Acharya Diwakar Dutt Sharma, one of the best scholars of the Sanskrit language of Himachal Pradesh.
- 67% of Himachal Pradesh is covered by forests.
- About 90% of the population of Himachal Pradesh lives in Villages.
- Shimla is the largest city in Himachal Pradesh. Shimla is home to the only natural ice skating rink in South Asia and the oldest ice skating rink in Asia.
- The Manali-Leh National Highway is famous for being the highest motorable road in the world.
- Himachal Pradesh is home to the largest glacier in Asia. The Shigri Glacier is located in the Lahaul-Spiti region and feeds the Chenab River.
- In 2013, Himachal Pradesh was declared India’s first smoke-free state.
- On October 2, 2009, the state government imposed a complete ban on all types of non-biodegradable polythene bags.
- Malana village, located in the Parvati Valley of Himachal Pradesh, is considered one of the oldest democracies in the world. The local people believe that they are of pure Aryan descent and that they are descendants of Alexander the Great. And tourists are not allowed to touch anything here or stay there at night. Malana village produces cannabis, which is also known as Malana cream. It has won the title of ‘Best Hashish’ twice; Once in 1994 and again in 1996 at the High Times Magazine Cannabis Cup.
- Himachal Pradesh is the second least corrupt state in the country after Kerala.
- Solan city is known as ‘Mushroom City.
- Khajjiar Chamba is known as ‘Mini Switzerland’.
- After Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh is the second largest producer of apples in India.
- As per government records, Himachal Pradesh is the third-best state in terms of performance and overall development.
- Himachal Pradesh has three airports, Jubbar Hatti Airport (near Shimla), Bhuntar Airport (near Kullu), and Gaggal Airport (near Kangra).
- Kasol, situated in the Kullu Parvati Valley, is known as ‘Mini Israel’. Israeli tourists visit this place the most.
- Bir Billing is the first place in India where paragliding was organized in 2015. It is one of the most natural places for paragliding in the world.
- Built-in 1891, the Chail Cricket Ground (located at an altitude of 8,018 feet above sea level), located in Chail, Himachal Pradesh, is famous as the highest cricket ground in the world.
- The Kalka-Shimla Railway is fondly known as the Toy Train. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and this railway holds the record for covering only 96 km, the steepest slope of over 5,800 feet. The train crosses over 800 bridges and 100 tunnels during the journey.
- Tourism has a huge contribution to the economy and development of Himachal Pradesh. Tourists from all over the world come to Himachal.
- Himachal Pradesh has achieved 100 percent sanitation, and according to reports, Every house in the state has a toilet.
- The cultivation of capsicum was first started by the British in Shimla and since then it got the name capsicum.
- Fossils more than 85 million years old have been discovered in Shivalik Fossil Park in the Sirmaur district.
- Himachal Pradesh also has its own IIT in Mandi.
- India’s first election was held at Kalpa in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh. This was done because the Kinnaur region was cut off from the rest of the country for more than 6 months every year due to heavy snowfall. Hence, India’s first polling station was established in Kalpa, Himachal Pradesh. India’s oldest voter Shyam Saran Negi was a resident of Kalpa, Himachal Pradesh. He was a retired school teacher who cast his first vote in the 1951 general elections. He has voted in every general election in India. Shyam Saran Negi is also considered to be the oldest voter in India to date. Born: 1 July 1917, Kalpa, Reckong Peo
Died: 5 November 2022, Kalpa, Reckong Peo.
- Komik village in Spiti valley is the highest village in the world connected by a motorable road, situated at an altitude of 4,587 meters above sea level. The polling station is also believed to be the highest in the world.
- Hikkim village in Lahaul and Spiti district has the highest post office in the world, this quaint village is situated at an altitude of 4,440 meters above sea level.
- Suraj Tal Lake is the highest lake in Himachal Pradesh and the third-highest lake in India And is the 21st-highest lake in the world.
- Himachal Pradesh shares borders with Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh to the north, Punjab to the west, Haryana to the southwest and Uttarakhand to the southeast, and Uttar Pradesh to the south. The state also shares an international border with the Tibet Autonomous Region in China to the east.
- Himachal Pradesh is home to some of the oldest monasteries in Asia. Popular monasteries in Himachal Pradesh include Tabo Math, Dhankar Math, Namgyal Math, Sherbaling Math, Guru Ghantal Math, Kungri Math, Tsuglagkhang Complex, and Lhalung Math.
- All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Bilaspur (Himachal Pradesh), an Institute of National Importance, was officially approved by the Union Cabinet on December 04, 2019, The Institute was approved to be set up on about 247 acres (99.96 ha). Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of AIIMS, Bilaspur on October 03, 2017. In AIIMS Bilaspur is proposed to be made a hospital with 750 beds, in which 15-20 super specialty departments will be equipped with all modern facilities.
- Kinnaur will become the first district to transport apples and peas by drone, a box of 20 kg will reach in six minutes. A successful trial of carrying a 20 kg box of apples through a drone to a distance of 12 kilometers in six minutes has been successful.