The City : Pune

PUNE or Punyanagri as it is called has had a glorious past of nearly 1000 years. Pune’s history is both illustrious and romantic. The city’s historical associations are fast woven with Shivaji Maharaj, the Peshwas and Lokmanya Tilak. It was here, in the Lal Mahal that Shivaji boldly attacked Aurangzeb’s uncle, Shaista khan and won back the lost territories. Later it was ruled by the Peshwas. When Bajirao-I became the Peshwa, he made Pune the headquarters of the army and the Shaniwar Wada was built. In 1820 the Peshwas were dethroned and the British established a permanent Army Cantonment. Since then it has moved gracefully from the past into the present.

PUNEis, in fact, a pot pourri of old and the new. What makes it tick is a harmonious blend between the two. Bazaars and shopping plazas. Palaces and ritzy hotels. Temples, mosques, churches and even a synagogue to visit. This sprawling metropolis conjures up a myriad images - ancient forts, ornate palaces, lush gardens, shopping arcades, educational institutions and rolling hills. The Ganapati festival celebrated yearly, called the Pune Festival, has made its mark on the tourist map of India.

Peace and prosperity are two words synonymous with Pune city, which is internationally acclaimed for its educational traditions and communal harmony. Students come here not only from all over India but from all over the world. The city boasts of the National Defence Academy, Institute of Military Engineering, the Film and Television Institute, Armed Forces Medical College, Deccan College (Linguistics and Archaeological studies).

PUNE, today, is a fast-growing urban area and owing to its proximity to Bombay, it is experiencing a boom in business activity. The city is a cultural centre and a beehive of many cultural activities including theatre, music, dance and film.

The population of this green, beautiful and peace-loving city, including Hindus, Zoroastrians, Sikhs, Muslims, Christians, Chinese, is around 2.5 million. The present growth and popularity can be attributed to good climate, less pollution, excellent educational facilities and a good standard of living.

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