Interesting Facts About Pune by:David H. Urmann
Pune is an established industrial and by far the fastest-growing city in India. Numerous automobile and Information Technology companies are set up here.
The city of Pune is the 2nd largest city of the Maharashtra state in India. It is located in the western portion of India and is approximately 160 kilometers southeast of Mumbai, Maharashtra's state capital. Moreover, it is the 8th largest city in the whole country. This city lies on about 560 meters above the sea level and on the plateau of Deccan at the confluence of the rivers Mutha and Mula. The city of Pune is the also the 8th most populous city in India among metropolitan areas. It is also the administrative headquarters of both the Pune division and Pune district.
The city is believed to have existed back in 937 AD as a small town. The leader of the Maratha Empire named Shivaji lived in this city when he was still a boy. During Shivaji's reign, he foresaw the city's significant development, and growth. In the early 18th century, this city became a significant political center and became the seat of the prime minister of the "Chhatrapati of Satara" and the Peshwa. After Pune was annexed to the British India in the 19th century, it served as the monsoon capital of the Presidency of Bombay and a cantonment town. The title as the "monsoon capital" continued until the India's independence from the British.
In present times, Pune is now famous for its state-of-the-art educational facilities. It has over a hundred educational institutions and approximately nine universities scattered within the area. It boasts of a growing industrial land with several automotive and information technology companies that set factories in the area.
The name "Pune" is derived from the Saskrit word "Puya Nagari" which means "City of Virtue." The oldest mention of this name dates back in 937 AD on a Rashtrakuta plate made of copper. In this instance, the town of Pune is referred to as Punak Vishaya or Punya-Vishaya. At the beginning of the 13th century, this city has been known as Punavadi or Kasbe Pune. The city's name is often transcribed as "Poona" in English but the spelling "Pune" became the standard spelling due to the common practice of the locals.
Pune City is often referred as "The Oxford of the East" because of the numerous educational institutions throughout the area. The city is also called "The Detroit of India" due to the various manufacturing companies, particularly automobile companies based on the metropolitan area.
The popular museums of Pune include the Mahatma Phule Museum, Pune Tribal Museum, Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum, The National War Museum and the Babasaheb Ambedkar Museum. In addition, the city has various public gardens set in the area, like the Sambhaji Park, Peshwe Park, Kamala Nehru Park, Saras Baug, Shabu Udyan and the Empress Garden as well as the Bund Garden. The so-calld Pune-Okayama Friendship Garden is now renamed as "Pu La Deshpande Udyan," a recreation spot of the Garden of Karakuen in Japan. Furthermore, the Rajiv Gahandi Zoological Park, situated at Katral, is just close to Pune. This particular zoo was earlier located at the Peshwe Park and was merged into an educational reptile park in 1999 at Katraj.
The city's College of Military Engineering has a rail museum, a part of the larger "Corps Equipment Museum." In addition, another railway museum is supposed to open in Lonavala. Lonavala is just 60 kilometers away from Pune on the railway line of Mumbai.
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