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Uttarakhand Diwas: Commemorating 23 years of natural beauty, cultural splendour and spiritual essence

November 9, 2023 5:52 PM IST

culture | Uttarakhand Diwas | Devbhoomi | foundation day | Uttarkashi

Uttarakhand Foundation Day, also known as Uttarakhand Diwas, is a day dedicated to celebrating the establishment of the 27th state of India, Uttarakhand. Since its inception in 2000, this day has been observed annually on November 9, marking the separation of Uttarakhand from Uttar Pradesh. The people of Uttarakhand honour this occasion with a variety of events and programmes that highlight their culture, history, and achievements.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi extended his greetings to the people of Uttarakhand on Thursday, emphasizing the invaluable contribution of “Devbhoomi Uttarakhand” to the richness of Indian culture and tradition. In a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, Modi expressed his sentiments.

The state is renowned for its natural beauty, spiritual significance, and rich heritage. Home to holy places like the Char Dham and the first and oldest national park in India, Jim Corbett, Uttarakhand boasts a diverse flora and fauna, housing many rare and endangered species.

Significance of Uttarakhand Diwas
Uttarakhand Foundation Day holds significance as it commemorates the creation of the 27th state of India on November 9, 2000, carved out of Uttar Pradesh. Uttarakhand is a land of natural beauty, cultural diversity, and religious significance, earning its nickname as the “Land of the Gods” due to its rich mythological and historical heritage. The Char Dham pilgrimage sites—Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri, and Yamunotri—are integral to its spiritual fabric.

History of Uttarakhand
Encompassing a total area of 53,566 km2 (20,682 sq mi), with 86 percent comprised of mountains and 65 percent covered in forests, Uttarakhand’s northern region is encircled by high Himalayan peaks and glaciers. The Ganges at Gangotri and the Yamuna at Yamunotri, originating from Uttarakhand’s glaciers, hold immense significance in Hinduism.


In 2000, after extensive negotiations and compromises, the Parliament passed the Uttar Pradesh Reorganisation Act, leading to the creation of Uttarakhand as a separate state. The act received the President of India’s assent on October 25, 2000, officially establishing Uttarakhand on November 9, 2000, with Nityanand Swami of the BJP serving as the first chief minister.

Art and Culture
Uttarakhand is a haven for artisans, showcasing a variety of arts and crafts. From exquisite woodwork to paintings from the Garhwal School and murals like Aipan, the state’s locals demonstrate exceptional skills. Candle-making in Nainital has its dedicated market, attesting to the excellence of this art.

Economy
Uttarakhand relies heavily on agriculture for revenue, cultivating crops such as basmati rice, wheat, soybeans, groundnuts, coarse cereals, pulses, and oilseeds. The state also produces fruits like apples, oranges, pears, peaches, litchis, and plums. Tourism, hydropower, and recent strides in IT, ITES, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and automobile industries contribute to its economic landscape.

Devbhoomi’s Lifestyle
The lifestyle in Uttarakhand is diverse, varying between urban and rural life. The terrain, featuring both hilly and plain regions, influences the way of life. Urban centers like Dehradun, Nainital, Haldwani, Haridwar, among others, boast modern facilities, top-notch schools, hotels, shopping areas, and restaurants. Residents actively engage in adopting new technology, enhancing infrastructure, and participating in social reforms.

Traditional Uttarakhand Cuisine
Arsa: A sweet made from rice and jaggery, served on auspicious occasions like celebrations, weddings, and childbirth.
Chainsoo: A dal preparation made by crushing and cooking black gram dal (pulses).

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