SOCIAL SCIENCE PROJECT WORKINFORMATION OF GUJARAT AND MAURITIUS Presented By Utkarsh Verma VIII ‘C’
INFORMATION OF MAURITIUSArea: 2040 sq km (788 sq miles).Population: 1,159,729 (1998).Population Density: 589.0 per sq km.Capital: Port Louis. Population: 147,131(1998).Geography: Mauritius, a volcanic andmountainous island in the Indian Ocean,lies 2000km (1240 miles) off thesoutheastern coast of Africa, due east ofMadagascar. The island-state stands onwhat was once a land bridge betweenAsia and Africa called the MascareneArchipelago. From the coast, the landrises to form a broad fertile plain onwhich sugar cane flourishes. Some 500km(310 miles) east is Rodrigues Island, whilenortheast are the Cargados Carajos Shoalsand 900km (560 miles) to the north isAgalega.Government: Republic. Gainedindependence from the UK in 1968. Headof State: President Cassam Uteem since1992. Head of Government: PrimeMinister Aneerood Jugnauth since 2000.Language: English is the official language.The most widely spoken languages areFrench, Creole, Hindi and Bhojpuri. Urdu
and Chinese are also among thelanguages spoken.Religion: 51 per cent Hindu, 31 per centChristian, 17 per cent Muslim.Time: GMT + 4.Telephone:. Country code: 230. There areno area codes. Outgoing internationalcode: 00. There are a limited number ofpublic telephone booths, mainly at theairport and in major hotels.Internet/E-mail: There are a number of ISPs in Mauritius; they include TelecomPlus, Mauritius Network (MNS), MauriNet and Mauritius Telecom(http://mt.intnet.mu). There are cyber cafés in Phoenix, Vaoas and other maintowns. Most hotels offer internet facilties.Telegram: Messages can be sent from the Mauritius TelecommunicationsService offices in Cassis and Port Louis. There are also facilities at OverseasTelecoms Services Ltd, Rogers House, John Kennedy Street, Port Louis.Postal: Post office hours: Generally Mon-Fri 0815-1115 and 1200-1600; Sat 0800-1145.TRAVELAIR: The national airline of Mauritius is Air Mauritius (MK). Air Austral,Air Europe, Air France, Air Madagascar, Air Seychelles, Air Tanzania, AirZimbabwe, British Airways, Condor, Singapore Airlines, South AfricanAirways and Swissair also fly to Mauritius.INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT: Mauritius (MRU) (Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam) is48km (30 miles) southeast of Port Louis. Taxis are available to the city (traveltime - 45 minutes to 2 hours). Airport facilities include duty-free shops,banks/bureaux de change, snack bar, post office, shops and car hire (Avis,Europcar and Hertz). A new terminal has recently been built.SEA: Port Louis is the main port. It is primarily commercial but there is alimited passenger service to Réunion and Rodrigues Island.
PASSPORTS: Passport valid for at least 6 months from date of entry required byall. Passports issued by the government of Taiwan are not recognised. Theholders of such documents can apply for an entry permit to the Passport andImmigration Officer (address below). INFORMATION ABOUT GUJARATGujarat State InformationCapital : GandhinagarDistricts :25Languages: Gujarati, Hindi, EnglishIntroduction to GujaratGujarat has seen a succession of races, settlers as well as conquerors, andamalgamated their cultures into its own. The result has been a wonderfulfusion of new ideas and old world traditions. Rich in crafts, history andnatural beauty, this home state of Mahatma Gandhi continues to attractartists, scholars, intellectuals and businessmen from the world over.Geography of GujaratGujarat is situated on the western coast of the Indian Peninsula. The state isbound by the Arabian Sea on the west, Pakistan and Rajasthan in the northand northeast, Madhya Pradesh in the southeast and Maharashtra in thesouth. Based on physiology and culture, Gujarat can be divided into severalregions like Kutch, Saurashtra, Kathiawad, and Northeast Gujarat.In the north is Rann of Kutch, a salt marsh and in the south is Little Rann ofKutch. Between Saurashtra and Khambhat is Kathiawad with a maximumaltitude of 180 meters and it is flanked by sandstones in the north. The CentralKutch region extends to Northeast Gujarat and the region has low hills andsmall plains. Southeast Gujarat is an extension of the Western Ghats andreceives the highest rain in the state. The forest cover in Gujarat is relativelylittle with 9.61% area covered with forest, it still supports more than 40 speciesof animals including the rare Asiatic Lion, wild ass and blackbuck. An
assortment of birds and reptiles completes the tally of wildlife this statesupports.Brief History of GujaratThe name of the Gujarat state is derived from Gujjaratta, which means the landof the Gujjars. It is believed that a tribe of Gujjars migrated to India around the5th century AD. Many Indus Valley and Harappan centers have beendiscovered in the state like Lothal, Dholavira, Rangpur, Lakhabaval, Amri,and Rozdi and established the earliest known history of Gujarat to around 3000BC to 2200 BC. At that point of time, Lothal was the main port of thiscivilization. With the advent of the Yadava tribe led by Lord Krishna, some3,500 years ago, came the glorious days for Gujarat. It was followed by 100years of Lord Krishnas rule. It is believed that Ashoka, the Mauryan kingextended his kingdom to Gujarat. The fall of the Maurya Empire led the smallkingdoms to establish their power in this state from time to time.The state achieved a high level of prosperity during the time of Solankis fromthe 9th century. In the 12th century AD, Allauddin Khilji, the Sultan of Delhidefeated the Waghela king of Gujarat and a long era of Muslim rule overGujarat started. The Marathas ended the Muslim rule in the 18th century onlyto be handed over to the British in the early 19th century. Surat was the centerof the first factory of the East India Company in India and after the First Warof Independence in 1857, the region came under the British monarchy alongwith the rest of the country.Districts of GujaratGujrat has 25 districts: Ahmedabad, Amelia, Banskantha, Bharuch, Narmada,Bhavnagar, Gandhinagar, Jamnagar, Junagadh, Porbandar, Kuchchh, Kheda,Anand, Mehsana, Patan, Panchmahal, Dahod, Rajkot, Sabarkantha, Surat,Surendranagar, Valsad, Navsari, Vadodara and DangEconomy of GujaratGujarat is the most industrialized states in India. It attracts the cream ofdomestic and multinational investment in the leading sectors of the economy.The important minerals produced into the state are agate, bauxite, dolomite,
fireclay, fluorite, fullers earth, kaolin, lignite, limestone, chalk, calcareous seasand, perlite, petroleum and natural gas, and silica sand.The state is the main producer of tobacco, cotton, and groundnut in thecountry. Gujarat also contributes inputs to industries like textiles, oil and soap.Agriculture in Gujarat forms a vital sector of the states economy. It has toprovide the required food grains for the states population and raw materialsfor most of the agro-based industries. The state produces a large variety ofcrops and its cropping pattern reflects the spatial variations in climate andtopography.Rivers of GujaratThe major rivers flowing through the state include Narmada, Sabarmati, andMahi in central and northern Gujarat; Mithi, Khari, Bhadar, Shetrunji andBhogavo in Saurashtra and Tapi, Purna, Ambika, Auranga and Damangangain the southern part of the state.Education in GujaratGujarat had an overall literacy rate of 69.97% as per census 2001. The maleliteracy rate is 80.50% while the female literacy rate is 58.60%. Gujaratgovernment is very serious about improving the education level in the stateand has started several programs to achieve full literacy such asuniversalisation of elementary education,The status of higher education in the state is very good. Gujrat is home to manypremier educational institutes such as Indian Institute of Management,Ahmedabad, Nirma Institue of Technology and Dhirubhai Ambani Institute ofInformation and Communication Technology. The total number of universitiesin the state including the deemed universities and institutes of nationalimportance is 15. The premier research institutes in the state include Institutefor Plasma Research, Physical Research Laboratory (PRL).Food of GujaratGujarati food is a vegetarian gourmands dream come true. It is a vegetarianwonder with complete nutrition derived from leafy vegetables prepared ininnumerable variations and subtly flavored with spices. Simple, practical,down-to-earth and wholesome, Gujarati food truly reflects the heart of the state.Gujarati food is primarily vegetarian, the main reason for which is the Jain
and Buddhist influences. However, the goodness of millet, yogurt, buttermilk,coconut, groundnut, sesame seeds and jaggery makes sure that this non-meatfood is not lacking in proteins.Arts & Culture of GujaratThere are four groups of people who came to inhabit this land at differentpoints of time and now form the majority here. Jats came from a place in Irancalled Half (to be known latter as Jat) and they were herders by occupation.Around five hundred years ago they came to Kutch and Sind in search of newgrazing pastures and settled there. Those who joined agriculture calledthemselves Garasia Jats and those who continued their ancestral occupationwere known as Dhanetah Jats, and those who chose to study the Koran becameFakirani Jats.Crafts in Gujarat are a way of life, a process that transforms even the mostmundane object of daily use into a thing of beauty. The skill of the Gujaraticraftsperson-be it a weaver or a metalworker, a woman who embroiders forherself or a potter who creates pieces of art out of clay-is bound to leave onespellbound.Wood carving is another important craft in Gujarat, evident in the manyelaborately carved temples, havelis (mansions) and palaces as well as objects ofdaily and ritual use. Utensils are another area where the craftspersons ofGujarat have excelled.Gujarat is also famous for its terracotta work, especially votive terra-cottafigurines which one can find by the hundreds at small shrines built in forests,along roads, outside villages, on lonely hill-tops and under large trees, especiallyin south Gujarat.Jewelry is yet another fascinating craft in GujaratDance & Music of GujaratGujarat has a rich tradition of song, dance and drama. Ras, Garba, and Bhavaithat are popular Gujarati folk dance forms, have their origin to the ancientperiod of Lord Krishna. The Ras dance is actually a form of Ras Leela in whichdifferent childhood antics of Krishna at Gokul and Vrindavan are enacted.Dandia Ras is performed during the Navratri Festival and men and womenboth join in a dance circle with small sticks known as dandia. Usha, the
granddaughter of Lord Krishna, is considered as the first dancer of the formcalled Lasya or Garba.Festivals of GujaratNavratri is celebrated for the 10 days preceding the festival of Dussehrausually in October. The most eagerly awaited festival of the year, whichcelebrates harvest time, Navratri is an occasion when both rural and urbanGujarat worship the nine incarnations of the Mother Goddess, Shakti, denotingcosmic energy.Other festivals of Gujarat include the Bhavnath fair, Dang Darbar, SaputaraSummer Festival, Madhavrai fair, and Desert Festival.