Modern Madhya Pradesh Trip
¤ The Government
Pradesh has a state legislature of 320 seats. The state elects 40
members to the Rajya Sabha. With the exception of 1977 and 1989 the
Congress I has held a comfortable majority, though the BJP (Bharatiya
Janata Party) has always had a strong following too. In December 1993
the BJP suffered a reverse, the Congress I winning power again in the
State Assembly and Digvijay Singh was named Chief Minister.
In the 1998 election, despite strong poll predictions that indicated
otherwise, the Congress was voted back to power with a good majority.
Digvijay Singh is still the Chief Minister of the state. The Maharaja
of Gwalior Madhavrao Scindia remains a popular local and national
The main food crops are jowar (sorghum), wheat, rice and coarse
millets such as kondo and kutki. Pulses (beans, lentils and peas) and
groundnuts (peanuts) are grown too. Rice is preferred in the East
where water is abundant; while wheat is the staple in the drier
regions of western Madhya Pradesh which touch the great Thar Desert.
Madhya Pradesh is the largest producer of soybean in India. Although
overall productivity of agriculture is quite low, oilseeds (linseed
and sesame), cotton and sugarcane are also grown here.
Madhya Pradesh has plenty of forest reserves, which are logged for
teak, sal, bamboo and salai (which yields a resin used for incense and
Minerals & Ores
Madhya Pradesh is rich in mineral resources. The countrys
largest diamond mine situated at Panna near Khajuraho has recoverable
reserves of one million carats.
Other mineral deposits include high-grade limestone, dolomite, iron
ore, manganese ore, copper, coal, rock phosphate and bauxite. The
state is also the countrys only producer of the tin ore.
Recently, an extensive program has been undertaken by the government
to explore gold deposits in Raipur and Raigarh districts of the state.
There are seven major rivers in the state, Narmada, Chambal, Tapti,
Sone, Betwa, Mahanadi and Indravati. These offer good potential for
generating hydroelectric power. The project at Chambal Valley is in
cooperation with Rajasthan. Other schemes include those at Rajghat,
Bansagar, the Mahanadi Reservoir, Hasdeo Bango and Bargi.
Several large and medium-scale industries are based at Indore,
Ujjain, Gwalior and Jabalpur. The major industries today are the steel
plant at Bhilai, the heavy electrical plant at Bhopal, an aluminum
plant in Korba, paper mills at Hoshangabad and Nepanagar, an alkaloid
battery factory at Neemuch and numerous cement works.
The railways, initially laid to connect Mumbai with Delhi and
Calcutta, and Delhi with Madras, today connect every corner of the
In many districts the road network is quite poor and because of this
some of its richest mineral deposits remain unexplored. Madhya Pradesh
offers great potential for economic growth.