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Madhya Pradesh

Madhya Pradesh, abbreviated MP, often called the Heart of India, is a state in central India. Its capital is Bhopal and Indore is the largest city. Madhya Pradesh is the second largest state by area and with over 75 million inhabitants the sixth largest state in India by population. It borders the states of Uttar Pradesh to the northeast, Chhattisgarh to the southeast, Maharashtra to the south, Gujarat to the west, and Rajasthan to the northwest.

The city of Ujjain (also known as Avanti) arose as a major center in the second wave of Indian urbanization in the sixth century BC, and served as the chief city of the kingdom of Malwa or Avanti. Further east, the kingdom of Chedi lie in Bundelkhand. Chandragupta Maurya united northern India c. 320 BC, establishing the Maurya empire (321 to 185 BC), which included all of modern-day Madhya Pradesh. King Ashoka's wife was said to come from Vidisha- a town north of today's Bhopal. The Maurya empire went into decline after the death of Asoka the Great, and Central India was contested among the Sakas, Kushanas, and local dynasties during the 3rd to 1st centuries BCE. Ujjain emerged as the predominant commercial center of western India from the first century BCE, located on the trade routes between the Ganges plain and India's Arabian Sea ports. It was also an important Hindu and Buddhist center.

Official Website : http://www.mp.gov.in/

Wikipedia : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madhya_Pradesh