City India

Assam

Assam has a rich green land of rolling plains and dense forests.

About Assam

Assam Valley and formerly the Assam Province (British India), is a northeastern state of India and is one of the most culturally and geographically distinct regions of the country. Assam though one of the original provinces of British ruled Indian sub-continent and present day India having its legislature that dates back to 1937, the present day Assam; had undergone numerous territory alignment changes with its state map being altered highest number of times when compared to any other provincial level changes that has happened in Independent India. Known for exquisite natural resources, geography and its important role in India's freedom struggle; Assam has its capital as Dispur, an especialized city circuit region located on the outskirts of its largest metropolis, Guwahati. Located south of the eastern Himalayas, Assam comprises the Brahmaputra and the Barak river valleys along with the Karbi Anglong and the Dima Hasao district with an area of 30,285 square miles (78,440 km2). Assam is surrounded by six of the other Seven Sister States: Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura and Meghalaya. These states are connected to the rest of India via a narrow strip in West Bengal called the Siliguri Corridor or "Chicken's Neck". Assam also shares international borders with Bhutan and Bangladesh; and cultures, peoples and climate with South-East Asia – important elements in India’s Look East policy. Assam became a part of India after the British occupied the region following the First Anglo-Burmese War of 1824–1826.

History
Assam and adjoining regions have evidences of human settlements from all the periods of the Stone ages. The hills at the height of 1,500–2,000 feet (460 to 615 m) were popular habitats probably due to availability of exposed doleritic basalt useful for tool-making.

According to the Kalika Purana (c.17th–18th AD), written in Assam, the earliest ruler of Assam was Mahiranga Danav followed by Hatak, Sambar, Ratna and Ghatak; Naraka removed this line of rulers and established his own Naraka dynasty. It mentions that the last of the Naraka-bhauma rulers, Narak, was slain by Krishna. Naraka's son Bhagadatta, mentioned in the Mahabharata, fought for the Kauravas in the battle of Kurukshetra with an army of kiratas, chinas and dwellers of the eastern coast. Later rulers of Kamarupa frequently drew their lineage from the Naraka rulers. However, there are lots of evidences to say that Mahayana Buddhism was prominent in ancient Assam. After Hi-uen Shang's visit Mahayana Buddhism came to Assam. Relics of Tezpur, Malini Than, Kamakhya and Madan Kam Dev Temple are the evidences of Mahayana Buddhism.

Tea History
After discovery of Camellia sinensis (1834) in Assam followed by its tests in 1836–37 in London, the British allowed companies to rent land since 1839. Thereafter tea plantations mushroomed in Upper Assam, where the soil and the climate were most suitable. Problems with the imported laborers from China and hostilities of native Assamese resulted into migration of forced laborers from central-eastern parts of India. After initial trial and error with planting the Chinese and the Assamese-Chinese hybrid varieties, the planters later accepted the local Camellia assamica as the most suitable one for Assam. By 1850s, the industry started seeing some profits. Industry saw initial growth, when in 1861, investors were allowed to own land in Assam and it saw substantial progress with invention of new technologies and machinery for preparing processed tea during 1870s. The cost of Assam tea was lowered down many folds and became more competitive than its Chinese variant.

Despite the commercial success, tea laborers continued to be exploited, working and living under poor conditions. Fearful of greater government interference, the tea growers formed the Indian Tea Association in 1888 to lobby to retain the status quo. The organization was very successful in this, and even after India’s independence conditions of the laborers have improved very little.

Geography
Geomorphic studies conclude that the Brahmaputra, the life-line of Assam is an antecedent river, older than the Himalayas. The river with steep gorges and rapids in Arunachal Pradesh entering Assam, becomes a braided river (at times 10 mi/16 km wide) and with tributaries, creates a flood plain (Brahmaputra Valley: 50–60 mi/80–100 km wide, 600 mi/1000 km long).[11] The hills of Karbi Anglong, North Cachar and those in and close to Guwahati (also Khasi-Garo Hills) now eroded and dissected are originally parts of the South Indian Plateau system. In the south, the Barak originating in the Barail Range (Assam-Nagaland border) flows through the Cachar district with a 25–30 miles (40–50 km) wide valley and enters Bangladesh with the name Surma.

Assam is endowed with petroleum, natural gas, coal, limestone and other minor minerals such as magnetic quartzite, kaolin, sillimanites, clay and feldspar.[12] A small quantity of iron ore is available in western districts. Discovered in 1889, all the major petroleum-gas reserves are in Upper parts. A recent USGS estimate shows 399 million barrels (63,400,000 m3) of oil, 1,178 billion cubic feet (3.34×1010 m3) of gas and 67 million barrels (10,700,000 m3) of natural gas liquids in the Assam Geologic Province.

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