Bangalore (now known as Bengaluru) is the capital of the Indian state of Karnataka. Bangalore is nicknamed the Garden City and was once called a pensioner’s paradise. Located on the Deccan Plateau in the south-eastern part of Karnataka,
Today as a large city and growing metropolis, Bangalore is home to many of the most well-recognized colleges and research institutions in India. Numerous public sector heavy industries, software companies, aerospace, telecommunications, and defence organisations are located in the city. Bangalore is known as garden city because of its beautiful gardens. Bangalore is also known as the Silicon Valley of India because of its position as the nation’s leading IT exporter. A demographically diverse city, Bangalore is a major economic and cultural hub and the second fastest growing major metropolis in India.
The name Bangalore is an anglicised version of the town’s name in the Kannada language, Bengaḷūru. and was known as “Bengaval-uru”, the “City of Guards” in Halegannada (Old Kannada).
On 11 December 2005, the Government of Karnataka announced that it had accepted a proposal by Jnanpith Award winner U. R. Ananthamurthy to rename Bangalore to Bengaluru. On 27 September 2006, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) passed a resolution to implement the proposed name change, which was accepted by the Government of Karnataka and it was decided to officially implement the name change from 1 November 2006. However, this process has been currently stalled due to delays in getting clearances from the Union Home Ministry.
After centuries of the rule of the Western Gangas, Bangalore was captured by the Cholas in 1024 which later passed on to the Chalukya-cholas in 1070. In 1116 the Hoysala Empire, overthrew the Cholas and extended its rule over Bangalore. Modern Bangalore was founded by a vassal of the Vijayanagara Empire, Kempe Gowda I, who built a mud-brick fort and a Nandi Temple in the proximity of modern Bangalore in 1537. Yelahanka is one of the oldest towns in Karnataka and it is believed that it has a history of more than 500 years. It is the home town for the ruling king called Kempegowda (under a provision given by Krishnadevaraya) who built Bangalore City. Kempe Gowda referred to the new town as his “gandubhūmi” or “Land of Heroes”.
Within Bangalore, the town was divided into smaller divisions – each called a “pete” The town had two main streets – Chikkapete Street, which ran east-west, and Doddapete Street, which ran north-south. Their intersection formed the Doddapete Square — the heart of Bangalore. Kempe Gowda’s successor, Kempe Gowda II, built four famous towers that marked Bangalore’s boundary. Myth says that the city would befall great calamity if it extended beyond these four towers. During the Vijayanagara rule, Bangalore was also referred to as “Devarāyanagara” and “Kalyānapura” (“Auspicious City”).
Bangalore fort was captured by the British armies under Lord Cornwallis on 21 March 1791 during the Third Anglo-Mysore War and formed a centre for British resistance against Tippu Sultan, being incorporated into the British Indian Empire after Tippu Sultan was defeated and killed in the Fourth Anglo-Mysore War (1799). The British returned administrative control of the Bangalore “pētē” to the Maharaja of Mysore, choosing only to retain the Cantonment under their jurisdiction. The ‘Residency’ of Mysore State was first established in Mysore in 1799 and later shifted to Bangalore in the year 1804. It was abolished in the year 1843 only to be revived in 1881 at Bangalore and to be closed down permanently in 1947, with Indian independence. The British, found it easier to recruit employees in the Madras Presidency and relocate them to cantonment area during this period. The Kingdom of Mysore relocated its capital from Mysore city to Bangalore in 1831. Two important developments during this period contributed to the rapid growth of the city: the introduction of telegraph connections and a rail connection to Madras in 1864.
Cubbon Park, Bangalore
In the 19th century, Bangalore essentially became a twin city, with the “pētē”, whose residents were predominantly Kannadigas, and the “cantonment” created by the British, whose residents were predominantly Tamils. Bangalore was hit by a plague epidemic in 1898 that dramatically reduced its population. New extensions in Malleswaram and Basavanagudi were developed in the north and south of the pētē. Telephone lines were laid to help co-ordinate anti-plague operations, and a health officer was appointed to the city in 1898. In 1906, Bangalore became the first city in India to have electricity, powered by the hydroelectric plant situated in Shivanasamudra. Bangalore’s reputation as the Garden City of India began in 1927 with the Silver Jubilee celebrations of the rule of Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV. Several projects such as the construction of parks, public buildings and hospitals were instituted to beautify the city. After Indian independence in August 1947, Bangalore remained in the new Mysore State of which the Maharaja of Mysore was the Rajapramukh.
Public sector employment and education provided opportunities for Kannadigas from the rest of the state to migrate to the city. Bangalore experienced rapid growth in the decades 1941–51 and 1971–81, which saw the arrival of many immigrants from northern Karnataka. By 1961, Bangalore had become the sixth largest city in India, with a population of 1,207,000. In the decades that followed, Bangalore’s manufacturing base continued to expand with the establishment of private companies such as MICO (Motor Industries Company), which set up its manufacturing plant in the city. Bangalore experienced a growth in its real estate market in the 1980s and 1990s, spurred by capital investors from other parts of the country who converted Bangalore’s large plots and colonial bungalows into multi-storied apartments. In 1985, Texas Instruments became the first multinational corporation to set up base in Bangalore. Other information technology companies followed suit and by the end of the 20th century, Bangalore had firmly established itself as the Silicon Valley of India.
The Hesaraghatta Lake in Bangalore
Bangalore lies in the southeast of the South Indian state of Karnataka. It is in the heart of the Mysore Plateau (a region of the larger Precambrian Deccan Plateau) at an average elevation of 920 m (3,018 ft). It is positioned at 12°58′N 77°34′E12.97°N 77.56°E and covers an area of 741 km² (286 mi²). The majority of the city of Bangalore lies in the Bangalore Urban district of Karnataka and the surrounding rural areas are a part of the Bangalore Rural district. The region consisting the Bangalore Urban and Rural districts is known as the Bangalore (region). The Government of Karnataka has carved out the new district of Ramanagara from the old Bangalore Rural district.
Bangalore experiences a tropical savanna climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. Due to its high elevation, Bangalore usually enjoys a more moderate climate throughout the year, although occasional heat waves can make things very uncomfortable in the summer.