Harit Pradesh (Hindi: हरित प्रदेश, Urdu: ہرِت پردیش) is a proposed new state of India comprising the western parts of Uttar Pradesh state. "Harit" (Meaning:Green) signifies the agricultural prosperity of the region.
Harit Pradesh includes three geographic regions:
Pashchim Pradesh (पश्चिम प्रदेश) is an alternative name that has been proposed, because the region is the western (pashchim in Hindi) part of Uttar Pradesh .
History, support and opposition
Uttar Pradesh is a large state, and "the cultural divide between the east and the west is considerable, with the purabiyas (easterners) often being clubbed with Biharis in the perception of the westerners." At the village level, some commentators have observed that Western Uttar Pradesh resembles Haryana and Rajasthan more than it does Eastern Uttar Pradesh, and the eastern region resembles Bihar more than it does Western Uttar Pradesh. Also, due to the successes of the Green Revolution, Western Uttar Pradesh has experienced both economic and social development, in a fashion similar to Haryana and Punjab. Eastern Uttar Pradesh, like Bihar, has not benefited to the same extent. The resulting disparity is believed to be partially responsible for the demand for separate statehood in Western Uttar Pradesh.
Uttar Pradesh into three states - Eastern, Central and Western, with capitals at Meerut, Kanpur and Allahabad respectively - in order to prevent excessively large states from dominating politics at the national level. The act was passed in 1956, however, keeping Uttar Pradesh intact as a single state.
Later, socialists like Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia, Jai Prakash Narain, Acharya Kripalani and others favoured re-drawing of the administrative map of India. But, Jawaharlal Nehru, the then prime minister, supported the States Reorganisation Commission (SRC) recommendation of re-forming states on linguistic basis.Dr K.M. Panikkar, in his dissenting note to the SRC report, however, opposed linguistic states and favoured formation of a state of west Uttar Pradesh.
During the 1975-77 Emergency, Sanjay Gandhi almost succeeded in carving out a new state of western Uttar Pradesh with Agra as capital. The new state was to include parts of Haryana too.
BSP led UP government had on November 23, 2011, passed a resolution in the state assembly for creating Purvanchal, Bundelkhand, Awadh Pradesh and Paschim Pradesh out of UP. The resolution was forwarded to the UPA government at the Centre but no action was taken.
After, Congress working committee passed a resolution to recommend formation of a new state of Telangana on 31 July 2013, demand for Harit Pradesh gained momentum. Sh. Jairam Ramesh suggested that UP's reorganisation was necessary as it is difficult to run such a big state effectively."Purely from an administrative point of view, a state of over 200 million people, 75 districts, over 800 blocks...It's just not governable. It is my personal view...Its politics is a separate issue," he said.
Role of specific rural communities
In recent decades, Uttar Pradesh has seen the economic and political rise of the Yadav community, which has a large population and spread in Uttar Pradesh. Jats, who are a dominant agricultural community spread across Pakistan, Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, have found themselves in a "politically disadvantageous position" in Western Uttar Pradesh due to this increasing influence of the Yadavs. A separate Harit Pradesh would likely become a prosperous smaller state similar to Haryana and Punjab.
The most prominent current-day advocate for the creation of the new state is Ajit Singh, the leader of the Rashtriya Lok Dal party and a Jat besides many Gurjar leaders. Pushpendra Singh, former General Secretary of Youth wing of Rashtriya Lok Dal, has also recently launched a political party by the name Harit Pradesh Party for the agenda of creating a separate State of Western UP. Other Jat leaders, such as Om Prakash Chautala of neighboring Haryana state and the leader of the Indian National Lok Dal have also made efforts to involve themselves in the politics of creating a separate state. Since the Muslim population in Western Uttar Pradesh (25%-34%, according to various sources) is higher than in Uttar Pradesh as a whole (17%), the Harit Pradesh proposal has found support from Muslim-affiliated organizations. Of the other main political forces in Uttar Pradesh, the Bahujan Samaj Party has supported the demand in principle, the Samajwadi Party has opposed it, and the Indian National Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party have adopted a non-committal stance. From the Bahujan Samaj Party, Mayawati and DP Yadav have been vocal about their support.
Rashtriya Lok Dal alleges that "Western UP contributes to a large chunk - nearly 72% - of the state's total income. In turn, what western UP gets is not enough. Just 18% of the state's budget is spent on developing west UP. This anomaly, understandably, makes the people of this area dissatisfied".There are allegations that in most years, funds allocated to west UP were never spent. According to Professor Jates only 20% of the total Government employees, less than 10% of employees in the secretariat, and less than 5% of department heads in the utter pradesh government are from west UP.
The creation of three new states in 2000 (Jharkhand from the division of Bihar, Uttarakhand from the division of Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh from the division of Madhya Pradesh) gave new impetus to the demand for Harit Pradesh.
The proposed state would include 22 districts in six divisions:
It shares borders with the current states of Uttarakhand, Haryana, Delhi, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, as well as a brief international border with Nepal in Pilibhit district. Harit Pradesh, being the only plains state sharing border with Uttarakhand in the Shivalik foothills serves as the gateway to Uttarakhand.
Meerut, being the leading centre of agricultural,educational and economic development, is the proposed capital of Harit Pradesh.
The proposed state contains Upper Ganga and Yamuna Doab region which is considered one of the most fertile lands in the country. River Yamuna forms a natural border between Harit Pradesh and Haryana.
Major State and National highways passing through Harit Pradesh are:
SH-57 (Saharanpur-Dehradun-Yamunotri-Badrinath), NH-58 (Meerut-Muzaffarnagar-Haridwar-Badrinath), NH-24 (Moradabad-Bareilly-Lucknow), NH-2 (Mathura-Agra-Allahabad-Varanasi) and NH-91 (Bulandshahr-Aligarh-Kanpur) connects Delhi with major cities of the region.
The Western Uttar Pradesh (Harit Pradesh) is agriculturally prosperous. It is relatively industrialised and has seen greater degree of urbanisation as compared to other regions of Uttar Pradesh. Highly fertile land of upper Ganga-Yamuna Doab and its proximity to the National Capital Region play significant role in the economic development of Harit Pradesh.
Meerut is a rich agricultural area .It is the biggest gold market of Asia and biggest exporter of sports related items and music instruments of the country. Meerut has shown healthy numbers in terms of revenue generation. Meerut has started pouring in as Delhi–Mumbai freight corridor and east freight corridor will be intersecting very near to Meerut, making it a cost effective destination for setting up industries.
Harit Pradesh is 'IT-Hub' of North India. Noida, Greater Noida and Ghaziabad region which lies in NCR has emerged as a key hub for IT and ITeS industries, including software, captive business process outsourcing (BPO) and electronics.
Noida is also famous for TV News broadcasters.News channels such as Star News, Zee News, NDTV, Mahua News and several other News channels are located in Film City.
Muzaffarnagar district is an important hub of jaggery trading business and is also known as "Sugar Bowl of india". According to Economic Researchfirm Indicus Analytics, Muzaffarnagar has the highest agricultural GDP in present Uttar Pradesh. It has the largest granary in present UP.
Saharanpur area, besides being agriculturally rich, is famous for its wooden handicrafts industry and Indian Tobacco Company (ITC Limited).
Aligarh is an important business centre of Uttar Pradesh and is most famous for its lock industry.
Moradabad is renowned for brass work and has carved a niche for itself in the handicraft industry throughout the world.
Agra has a flourishing tourism industry and it is also an importatnt centre of leather and footwear business . Mathura Refinery located in Mathura city is one of the biggest oil refineries of Asia
As per the Census 2011 data, total population of the proposed state would be 6.3 Crores
Largest Cities by Population: * Ghaziabad (3m) *Agra (1.8m) *Meerut (1.6m) *Bareilly (1m) *Moradabad (.9m) *Aligarh (.89m) *Saharanpur (.76m) *Noida (.68m) *Muzaffarnagar (.48m) *Mathura (.46m) *Rampur(.38m)
Notable People born in the proposed state of Harit Pradesh
- Chaudhary Charan Singh (Ghaziabad) - Kisan Leader and Ex. Indian Prime Minister
- Mahendra Singh Tikait (Muzaffarnagar) - Kisan Leader and Former President of Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU)
- Rajesh Pilot (Ghaziabad) - Politician
- Kanwaljit Singh (Saharanpur) - Actor
- Nawazuddin Siddiqui (Muzaffarnagar) - Actor
- Zakir Hussain (Meerut) - Actor
- Kailash Kher (Meerut) - Singer
- Sachin Pilot (Saharanpur) - Politician
- Piyush Chawla (Moradabad) - Cricketer
- Suresh Raina (Ghaziabad) - Cricketer
- Praveen Kumar (Meerut) - Cricketer
- Vishal Bhardwaj (Meerut/Bijnor) - Film Director/Producer
- Ashutosh Kaushik (Saharanpur) - MTV Roadies Fame
- Sajal Basu (2005), Regionalism, ethnicity, and left politics, Rawat Publications, ISBN 81-7033-930-8, "... perhaps only to strengthen his own demand of a separate Harit Pradesh comprising 23 districts from western UP ...A consequent demand for the separation of the more prosperous western districts of UP which have been the bastion of the green revolution, and have variously been named as Pashchim Pradesh or more recently as Harit Pradesh by Ajit Singh ..."
- "Unorganised Workers of Delhi and the Seven Day Strike of 1988". Indrani Mazumdar, Archives of Indian Labour. Retrieved 2008-10-21.
- Pragmatism and development: the prospect for pluralist transformation in the Third World, Greenwood Publishing Group, 1998, ISBN 0-89789-573-8, "... Village organization and district administration in western Uttar Pradesh is generally much more like the neighboring states of Rajasthan and Haryana than like eastern Uttar Pradesh. Eastern Uttar Pradesh is more like Western Bihar than western Uttar Pradesh ... Of all these regions, western Uttar Pradesh is generally regarded as having the best administration, the most productive agriculture, and the best managed canals ..."
- Mohamad Riad El Ghonemy, "The Dynamics of Rural Poverty", Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 1986. ... Haryana and West Uttar Pradesh recorded spectacular production increases ...
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- Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar (1955), Thoughts on Linguistic States, "... The only remedy is to break up the Northern States of U.P., Bihar and Madhya Pradesh. How did this solution not strike the Congress Working Committee I am unable to understand ... My proposal with regard to the Uttar Pradesh is to divide it into three States. The three States of the Uttar Pradesh could have as their capitals (1) Meerut (2) Cawnpore and (3) Allahabad ..."
- Boris Ivanovich Kluyev (1981), India: National and Language Problem, Sterling, "... For example, in May 1972 fourteen members of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly submitted a resolution for setting up three new States - Braj Pradesh, Awadh Pradesh and Purbi Pradesh. The resolution was defeated. Curiously enough, the arguments of those supporting division were essentially the same, although the representatives hailed from different regions of Uttar Pradesh ..."
- Jagpal Singh (August 4, 2001), "Politics of Harit Pradesh: The Case of Western UP as a Separate State", Economic and Political Weekly 36 (31): 2961–2967, JSTOR 4410945, "... It is spearheaded by the politicians, especially a section of jats, belonging to western UP. Ajit Singh has been playing a pivotal role in it ..."
- "INLD bid to get foothold in UP", The Tribune, 2001-07-05, retrieved 2009-07-24, "... the move of the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) supremo and Chief Minister of Haryana, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, to raise the demand of a separate ‘kisan pradesh’ out of western UP ... Since Mr Ajit Singh has also raised the demand of creating a ‘harit pradesh’ in the same region, the move by both Mr Chautala and Mr Ajit Singh is seen as only a political strategy to ‘outwit’ each other ..."
- "Minister's demand for Muslim Pradesh condemned", Times of India, 2006-07-19, retrieved 2009-07-24, "... demand is neither feasible nor proper,"said Manzoor Ahmad, former vice-chancellor of Dr B R Ambedkar University, Agra ... Muslim population which is not more than 25% in Western UP. ..."
- "Ajit Singh struggling to retain Muslim vote", The Hindu, 2002-02-12, retrieved 2009-07-24, "... the Muslim presence in western U.P. is said to be about 34 per cent ..."
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- "Imams back campaign for 'Harit Pradesh'", The Hindu, 2001-08-18, retrieved 2009-07-24, "... campaign for `Harit Pradesh' ... appears to be gathering momentum with the All-India Imam Association, an influential body of Muslim clerics, today pledging support ..."
- "Mayawati joins issue with Paswan, Ajit Singh", The Hindu, 2001-06-26, retrieved 2009-07-24, "... She said the BSP stood for creation of Harit Pradesh ..."
- "Ajit Singh reiterates Harit Pradesh demand", The Times of India, 2011-01-10, "...In turn, what western UP gets is not enough ..."