Hyderabad is the capital of the southern state of Telangana which came into existence as 29th state of Indian Union in June 2014.
Before the bifurcation, Hyderabad, a twin city, was the capital of united Andhra Pradesh.
Spread over 922 sq. km along the banks of Musi River, the Deccan city has a population of 6.8 million (Metropolitan area: 7.75 million) thus making it the fourth most populous city in India.
With an average altitude of 542 metres (1,778 ft), much of Hyderabad is situated on hilly terrain around artificial lakes, including Hussain Sagar, north of the city centre.
Over the decades, Hyderabad has adopted itself well to its changing landscape and profile. From being the capital of the princely state of Hyderabad ruled by the Nizam dynasty (till the end of British Raj), the city has transformed into a high-tech hub for a range of software companies and an exploding metropolis offering a high quality life to its citizens.
Emperor Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah formed the city of Hyderabad in 1591 CE. The region was under the control of Qutb Shah dynasty for nearly a century before the Mughals captured this territory.
In 1724, Mughal viceroy AsifJah I declared his sovereignty and created his own dynasty, known as the Nizams of Hyderabad. The Nizam's territory became a princely state during the British Raj, and remained so for 150 years, with the city serving as its capital.
The city remained as the capital of Hyderabad state after it was brought into the Indian Union in 1948. When the last Nizam was given an ultimatum to join the Indian Union by the Nehru government, the king refused and wanted to remain as a sovereign entity.
Indian Army marched into Hyderabad under Operation Polo and theprincely state has no other option but to join the Indian confederation. Later on, during the reorganisation of Indian states in 1956, Hyderabad became the capital of Andhra Pradesh which was formed by merging the Telugu speaking areas of Madras province and the erstwhile principle state of Hyderabad.
In 2014, the newly formed state of Telangana split from AndhraPradesh and the city became joint capital of the two states, a transitional arrangement scheduled to end by 2025.
Many relics, monuments of Qutb Shahi and Nizam rule arescattered across Hyderabad with the Charminar - commissioned by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah - coming to symbolise the city.
Golconda fort is another popular site that attracts tourists for its heritage value showcasing the royal legacy of Hyderabad.
Mughlai culture is evident in the city's distinctive cuisine which includes Hyderabadi biryani, haleem and other recipes that have direct influences from the Persian menus.
The Qutb Shahis and Nizams made Hyderabad a vibrant cultural spot by inviting men of letters, artistes and personalities from different parts of the world.
Hyderabad emerged as the foremost cultural centre in India withthe decline of the Mughal Empire in the mid-19th century with the artistes migrating to the city from the rest of the subcontinent....Read More
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Hyderabad was historically known as a pearl and diamond trading centre and it continues to be called as Pearl City.
Many of the city's traditional markets including Laad Bazaar, Begum Bazaar and Sultan Bazaar are still doing brisk business by supplying a range of edible and utility items to the local populace.
However, industrialisation in the latter half of 20th century attracted a number of top corporates, manufacturers, R & D units, financial institutions and IT majors to set up operations in Hyderabad.
This rapid industrial growth had altered its landscape in tune with modern expectations of the people. Special economic zones (SEZs) dedicated to the IT sector have encouraged companies from all over the world to set up operations and the emergence of pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms in the 1990s led to the city being named as India's "Genome Valley". With a total income of $74 billion, Hyderabad is the fifth-largest contributor to India's overall GDP.
As another jewel in its enviable crown, the Pearl City emerged as the number one city in India in terms of offering quality living standards, according to Mercer's survey of major cities of the world.
The study titled 'Quality of Living Report 2015', ranked Hyderabad 138th in the global list of cities ahead of Pune (145th) to the top spot in India.
While India's IT hub Bengaluru (146th), Chennai (151st), commercial capital Mumbai (152nd) and India's political capital New Delhi (154th) were ranked much below Hyderabad in the Mercer's study.
Hyderabad emerged as a city of choice due to factors such as improved options for international schools and a host of public services being offered to the skilled workforce settled in the city.
Moreover, the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport is located 22 km from the city and offers a good range of international flights which had improves its ranking on global parameters.
A mammoth film production centre housing an integrated set of studios, computer labs and theatres has been the nerve centre of filmmaking in South India since 2000.
Spread over 2,000 acres, Ramoji Film City is the creation of producer Ramoji Rao who started this film studio complex in 1996 to facilitate the motion picture industry.
In fact, Tollywood, as the Telugu film world is called, is the second largest industry after Bollywood. Most of the production works of South Indian films are done at the integrated complex in Ramoji Film City.