Karnataka is situated on the western edge of the Deccan plateau and has for its neighbours Maharashtra and Goa on the north, Andhra Pradesh on the east, Tamil Nadu and Kerala on the south, and on the west it opens out to the Arabian Sea. It has an area of 191,791 sq km. Bangalore, nicknamed as the Silicon Valley of India, is the Capital of this southern state.
Karnataka has a written history of more than 2000 years. Apart from it being subjected to the rule of the Nandas, Mauryas, and the Satavahanas, Karnataka came to have indigenous dynasties like the Kadambas of Banavasi and the Gangas from the middle of the middle of the 4th century AD. The Chalukyas, the Rashtrakutas and others also once ruled over it.
Divided into 27 districts, the state is well connected by roads, railways, air and waterways. Motorable roads are 1,37,520 lakh km in length while rail network is 3,192 km which includes broad gauge, metre gauge and narrow gauge. Bangalore, Belgaum, Mangalore and Hubli are the main airports. New Mangalore Port is the main all-weather seaport in Karnataka which mainly handles cargo vessels. It has a sea coast of nearly 400 km (300 with inundations).
The state has two legislative houses- the Legislative Assembly of 224 members and the Legislative a Council of 75 members.
Karnataka is predominantly rural and agrarian and has a population of 44,977,201. About 76% of its population lives in rural areas while about 71% of its working force is engaged in agricultural and allied activities which generate 49% of the state income
Among the agriculture crops, Karnataka accounts for 59% of the country’s coffee production and 47% of the country’s ragi production. The state is fifth in oilseed production.
On the industrial front, Karnataka contributes four per cent of the National production in the industrial sector, and 20% to the state income. Machine tools, aircraft, electronic products, watches and telecommunication equipment are some of the items produced. Important public sector units are Hindustan Aeronautics, Hindustan Machines Tools, Bharat Earth Movers, Bharat Electronics, Bhrat Heavy Electricals, Indian Telephone Industries and National Aeronautical Laboratory
The state is rich in mineral resources. Important minerals are high grade iron ore, copper, manganese, chromite china clay, limestones and magnesite. Karnataka has the distinction of being the main gold producing state in the country. It is the sole producer of Felsite and leading producer of moulding sand and Fuchsite Quartizite. The state has rich deposits of granite.
The state offers many tourist spots with a variety of parks, gardens and historical monuments. The garden city of Bangalore has been adjudged the cleanest city in India more than once. The famous huge granite structure Vidhana Soudha and the beautiful Cubbon Park and Lalbhag in Bangalore are great tourist attractions. The former princely capital Mysore with the Brindavan Gardens and Srirangapattana nearby; Sharavanabelgola where the famous monolithic statue of Gomateshwara, 57 feet high stands; Belur, Halebidu and Somnathpura with the famous Hoysala monuments; Badami, Aihole and Pattadkal for the 1,300 year old rock-cut and structural temples; Hampi, the famous open air museum (ancient Vijayanagar); Gulbarga, Bidar and Bijapur, renowned for their indo-saracenic monuments; Mangalore and Karwar for ports and beaches; Gokarna, Udupi, Dharmasthala, Melkote, Gangapura and Saundatti, are famous pilgrimage centres.