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Profile of Punjab


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Profile of Punjab

Know Punjab

Punjab is one of the culturally rich and vibrant states in India. It has always displayed heroism and hospitality par excellence. With their warmth and diligence, Punjabi people welcome everyone with open arms. The state has unique topography and typical North-Indian landscapes with lots of attractions to explore. On the other hand, the intriguing history of Punjab invites you to revisit it again and again.

The industries and business is also flourishing here with full throttle. The agricultural potential of Punjab is known worldwide. Amidst all these, the societal development of Punjab is equally impressive. Let us lay some focus on all these aspects of Punjab to know more about it.

History of Punjab

History of Punjab goes back to as early as 516 BC. From early settlements of Indus Valley Civilization to Aryans, this land has witnessed all of them. The state has many historical monuments and sites that talk about the glorious past of Punjab. The land was inhabited by some of the mightiest empires and civilizations from time to time. Many of them were invaders who came and settled over here.

Etymology of Punjab

The literal meaning of Punjab is land of five (Panj) rivers (Aab). It is a Persian word. This name was possibly given to this region in the early phase of 14th century. Towards the end of 16th century, Punjab again found its citation as such in Tarikh-e-Sher Shah Suri. And later in inscriptions like Ain-e-Akbari by Abul Fazal and Tuzk-e-Jahangeeri by Jahangir. Interestingly, the synonymous name of Punjab is given in epic Mahabharata as well. In this great epic, it is described as Panchnada, the country of five rivers.

Pre Historic Era of Punjab

Indus valley civilization is one of the earliest human settlements known till date. Archeological evidences have proved the traces of this civilization in Indus River basin. The beginning of vedic era was also quite evident in Punjab. It was once inhabited by the Aryans who laid foundation of vedic culture and Hindu religion. The society at that time was tribal in composition. It constituted of janas or tribes made from many grams (groups of families). Many significant events during Rigvedic era took place in Punjab, including the writing of this oldest book.

Pre Historic Era of Punjab

In the early inscriptions of Panini and Kautilya as well, you can find references of Greater Punjab. Panini’s literary work named Ashtadhyayi, described communities of Punjab as Republics that lived by the power of arms. These republics were differentiated by their existence. Like those residing in plains were called as Vahikas while inhabitants of mountains were called Parvatiyas. Both of these were constituted of many clans of warriors. In short, the region of greater Punjab supposedly belonged to Martial people in that era. These inferences were again made by Kautilya’s Arthshatra in 4th century BC. It can be said that these republics named as Dardas, Kambojas, Pauravas, Malavas, Kurus, Madrakas, and Yaudheyas have played their major role in valiant history of Punjab.

Ancient Empires in Punjab:

The land of Punjab made it the bone of contention for many dynasties and mighty empires. From Aryans to Alexander, every great empire was attracted to the varied landscape, strategic position, and fertility of this land. As such it was invaded and inhabited by the earliest known empires like Achaemenid or the early Persians, Indo Scythians and Greeks. Gandhara and kamboja were two main kingdoms under Greater Punjab region. They acceded to the power of Achaemenid and became their prosperous satrapy.

Later, Alexander defeated this powerful empire with his strong army of 50000 fighters. On his advancement from Indus towards Jhelum, while some rulers submitted to his authority, there were some brave rulers who refused this proposal and preferred to fight for their honour. These Trans Indus tribes impressed Alexander with their valor and bravery. He settled two new cities with Greeks and Macedonian people. Later, Seleucid and Bactrian empires ruled over this land. This was the era when Punjab was ruled by the Indo Greeks who were mostly the Buddhists.

Ancient Empires in Punjab

The portions of Punjab that formed Satraps of Alexander were conquered by great Mauryan king, Chandragupt Maurya. He defeated Alexander’s successor Seleucus Nicator and ruled major part of Punjab. This empire lasted for more than a century in this region. Other Central Asian powers like Sakas, Hephthalites, Guptas, and Kushans also ruled over this state.

Rise of Islam in Arabic countries during 7th century led to rise of Muslim invasions in Central Asian region. Arab armies conquered the region of present day south Punjab. It was a major victory and ironically, the last one. Arabs were confined to Sindh and South Punjab only. They could not proceed further from there. It was the time when Pratihara rulers also reigned over some parts of Eastern Punjab. Brahmana Dynasty also ruled the region between Sindh and Sutlej rivers. These were commonly known as Shahi rulers.

Waihind towards the right of Sindh was the capital of this dynasty that ruled over vast area between Sirhind and Kabul. In 1021, Punjab was finally conquered by the Sultanate of Ghazni. Its reign continued for more than 157 years. Gradually, they receded in powers and lost vast area of their empire to Seljuk Turks. During the era of 1160, the Rajputs also conquered areas of western Punjab. Later, Mohammad Ghori defeated Ghaznavid kingdom in 1186-1187.

Medieval History of Punjab

Mohammad Ghori’s empire went under his general Qutub-ud-Din Aibak in 1206 after the former’s death. He shifted his capital to Lahore and laid foundation of Sultanate of Delhi. Punjab also came under this empire. It was conquered by the Mongols after long battles fought between them and Sultans. Later on, Lodhi rulers took over the territory of Punjab. With defeat of Lodhis by Babur in 1526, Mughal Empire expanded across the region of Punjab as well. Their reign continued here till the early 17th century.

Rule of Muslims in Punjab

The Durrani Empire established by Ahmad Shah Abdali was established here in 1747. They faced severe battles against the Great Marathas under Raghunathrao. However, Maratha Empire was ousted by Durranis in 1761 after their defeat in third battle of Panipat.

Rule of Sikhs in Punjab

It was the early 18th century when Muslim rule in Punjab began to crumble. The strong foothold of Ahmad Shah Abdali was receding and local rulers were regaining the powers of kingdoms. It was a time of utter chaos. Since 1757, Abdali was ruling over the territories of Punjab and Sind. During the same time, Sikhs also rose in their power and advanced to conquer Punjab. In their initial efforts, they were defeated by Afghan general, Taimur Khan. He forced Sikhs out of Amritsar but could not hold it for long. The Sikhs united as Misal to defeat him badly. Eventually, Sikhs took over the region of Lahore in 1758. Jassa Singh Ahluwalia became their leader as he played an important role in retreat of Afghan forces.

Rule of Sikhs in Punjab

At the time of third battle of Panipat in 1761, Ahmad Shah Abdali was engaged in war against Marathas while Sikhs marched forward to seize significant towns owned by his forces. These cities included Dialpur, Kot Isa Khan, Hoshiarpur, Jagraon, Naraingarh, and Kapurthala. Slowly, they extended their territory till Tarn Taran when Abdali left for Afghanistan. When Jassa Singh again marched to cross Beas in 1762, he had to face stiff resistance from Abdali and his forces. A catastrophic battle took place that forced Jassa Singh to flee towards Kangra Hills. But later on, when Abdali returned back, Sikhs under his leadership once again attacked and seized Sirhind. In fact, this was the first big victory of Sikhs in Punjab. It established their rule in the entire territory of Sirhind.

The turnaround of events after death of Abdali in 1793 worked completely in favor of Sikhs. Misls were united in Punjab and they controlled the whole territory of Punjab from all sides. Some were defeated by the Afghan forces but they soon regained their power and remained so till 1793 when Shah Zaman took over Kabul. He proved to be a major hurdle for conquests of Sikhs in this region. Initially he was routed by Sikhs but after reorganizing his forces, Shah Zaman finally ousted Sikhs out of Rohtas. It was the territory of Sukerchikias led by Ranjit Singh. During the same time, turbulences back home in Afghanistan caused Zaman to return. It created an opportunity for Sikhs to regain their power in Rohtas.

When Shah Zaman came back with ambition to rule over Delhi, he received many successful alliances from Muslim rulers and surprisingly from some Sikh sardars as well. He successfully captured the territories up to Jhelum and moved on towards the territory owned by Maharaja Ranjit Singh. Ranjit Singh’s army was huge but it was inadequately armed to face the heavy artillery of Afghans. As such, Sikhs decided to take shelter in hills. Shah Zaman easily entered Punjab and conquered Lahore.

In this crunch situation, Ranjit Singh reunited the Sikh forces and advanced in the direction of Lahore. They dismantled the foothold of Afghans in many small villages falling en route. During 1797, Shah Zaman had to return to Afghanistan for quashing the revolt from his brother. On his way back, he was attacked by Sikh forces who also routed the Afghans under Shahnachi Khan. Ranjit Singh became the war hero in Punjab with his victorious run.

Sikh Maharajas of Punjab

In 1798, Shah Zaman came back again to take revenge of his defeat. Sarbat Khalsa was called under Sada Kaur, who convinced Sikhs to fight till their last breath. She asked the Sikhs to fight for their honor and pride of their nation. In the strikes made by Shah Zaman’s forces, Muslims also suffered major loss of men and material. He finally attacked the Sikh rulers of Lahore and recaptured the citadel. Amritsar was next target of Zaman and it proved to be the fatal choice eventually. Sikh forces under Ranjit Singh united and fought valiantly against Afghans, forcing them to retreat. They returned to Lahore and Sikhs again surrounded them on all sides. Their supply lines were cut and they suffered a humiliating defeat from Sikhs. While retreating from Lahore, they plundered many towns. But this was actually the end of their era in Punjab.

Maharaja Ranjit Singh became the undisputed leader of Punjab territory. He planned to attack Lahore and offer respite to the people suffering from despotic rulers. In July 1799, Forces under Ranjit Singh attacked and conquered Lahore. He settled a vast empire spanning from Sutlej in east towards Peshawar city in west till the time when Sikhs were overruled by British during 1845.

Heirs to the throne of Maharaja Ranjit Singh in Punjab

  • Kharak Singh (1801-1840), the eldest son of Maharaja Ranjit Singh
  • Nau Nihal Singh (1821-1840), Grandson of Maharaja Ranjit Singh
  • Sher Singh (1807-1843), Son of Maharaja Ranjit Singh
  • Duleep Singh (1838-1893), the youngest son of Maharaja Ranjit Singh

The Rule of British in Punjab

1845 was marked by the onset of British rule in Punjab. It began with first Anglo Sikh war fought near Firozpur. The outcome of this war came in favor of British forces that seized the area between Beas and Sutlej rivers. The two forces entered into a peace treaty under which some British troops were held back in Punjab to look after the dominion of Maharaja Dhalip Singh, who was a minor. Sikhs were largely reduced in their numbers. As a consequence, some soldiers revolted in 1848 in Multan. The unrest that followed led to second Anglo Sikh war in 1849. After defeat of Sikhs in this war, Treaty of Lahore was created that annexed Punjab under East India Company.

Rise of British Rule in Punjab

Strategically, Punjab was one of the most influential territories for British. Lahore and Rawalpindi were the most important cities under their empire. With growing influence and atrocities of British, the struggles for freedom were sparked across Punjab. This state played the role of catalyst in this fight for independence. It produced some of the bravest freedom fighters who led this movement till the end. In 1919, the massacre of Jallianwala Bagh took place in Amritsar. In 1940, Muslim League’s resolution for Pakistan was sparked off from Punjab itself. It entailed start of communal violence in 1946 having Hindus and Sikhs on one side while Muslims on the other side. Finally, the leaders from Indian National Congress and Muslim League agreed upon the partition of Punjab.

Post Independence History of Punjab

At the time of independence in 1947, Western Punjab was acceded to Pakistan while the region of Eastern Punjab came under Indian Territory. The cities where Sikh culture and history was nurtured went to other side of border. Grave of Maharaja Ranjit Singh was left in Lahore of West Punjab. Sikhs lost their fertile lands, their homes and belongings to move into Indian side of Punjab.

In the wars of 1965 and 1971 between India and Pakistan, Punjab and its people played a heroic role. Major part of this war took place in Punjab region and India emerged as victorious in both these wars. The decade of 1970 was highlighted by Green Revolution in Punjab. It became agriculturally richest state of the country. On the other hand, massive industrialization was also promoted in Punjab. It turned out to be the main contributor to annual GDP of India as such.

Post Independence History of Punjab

Despite all this, Punjab had its share of unrest also. In the decade of 1980, the state was struck hard by the fundamentalists Sikhs who demanded independent status for Punjab, naming it as Khalistan. The movement was started by a small group but supported by Sikhs from around the world. In 1984, central government under then Prime Minister, Smt. Indira Gandhi led the operation Blue Star in Harmandir Sahib of Amritsar. Many casualties followed this incident and temple complex was also seriously damaged. The operation resulted in assassination of Smt. Indira Gandhi after two months and outrageous riots across the nation. But Punjab and Delhi were worst affected. After years of deliberate efforts made by police, administration, and government, situation calmed down in Punjab. The state was freed from the militancy during 1990s.

Punjab again played an important role to bridge the gap between India and Pakistan. Wagah Border Post in Punjab is the main crossing point between two nations. The famous Samjhauta Express train also runs from Atari in Indian Punjab to Lahore in Pakistan.

Also Read: History of Abohar | History of Ajitgarh | History of Barnala | History of Batala | History of Bathinda | History of Firozpur | History of Hoshiarpur | History of Jalandhar | History of Kapurthala | History of Khanna | History of Ludhiana | History of Moga | History of Pathankot | History in Patiala

Demographic Features of Punjab

Formed on: 11th November 1966
No. of Districts: 22
Area: 50,362 sq km
Area Rank: 19
Capital: Chandigarh
Population: 27,704,236
Average Elevation: 300 meters
Latitude: 29.30° North to 32.32° North
Longitude: 73.55° East to 76.50° East
Time Zone: IST (UTC + 5:30)
Literacy Rate: 76.68%
Official Language: Punjabi in Gurmukhi Script
State Animal: Black Buck
State Bird: Baz (Eastern Goshawk)
State Tree: Shisham

Geography of Punjab

Punjab is a strategically important state of India. It is, in fact, the eastern part of erstwhile larger Punjab Province. Indian side of Punjab is triangular in shape and is a very fertile inland state. It is flanked by Jammu and Kashmir on the northern side, Himachal Pradesh on the eastern side and state of Haryana on the southern side. It borders with Pakistan on its western side. It is a border state with fertile plains and rich water bodies. It has more than 90% area in the form of plains. Historically too, Punjab was a significant region for Indian subcontinent. After partition, the macro regional properties were not changed in Punjab but the landscape of this state underwent sudden transformations on micro level.

Topography of Punjab

Topography of Punjab

The landscape of Punjab is divided into two parts. The higher region formed by sub Shivalik ranges and rest of the state is situated on Sutlej Ghaggar river basin. Lower Shivalik ranges separate the mighty Himalayan ranges from the plains. In the north eastern side of state, series of undulating hills lie at foot of Himalayan ranges.

The average elevation of Punjab ranges from 180 meter above sea level in southwestern side to 350 meters towards northeast side. The region in southwestern side is deserted in condition with extensive cultivation. It extends up to Thar Desert.

The flood plains of Punjab are formed by alluvial deposits brought by the rivers and the highlands are made from the previous deposits of alluvium in this state. The interfluves called doabs are named after the rivers confined to them. Although, Punjab looks flat on macro regional levels, yet on micro regional level, it has diverse topographical conditions.

Topographical Regions of Punjab:

In respect of land forms, Punjab can be classified into four types that include:

1. Shivalik Ranges:
The region of Punjab has steep rise of these hills in its northern direction. These hills extend further towards east. Shivalik hills are thickly formed by gravels and Mio-Pleistocene sands. They have low elevation ranging between 300 and 1000 meters above sea level. They offer striking contrast to the alluvial plains of this region. Though, these hills are scantly forested and highly dissected.

Topographical Features of Punjab

2. The Foothill Zone:
There is an undulating and narrow zone situated along the foot of Shivalik hills. The unique feature of this zone is the chos, the seasonal streams that cut across this tract. These streams originate from the upper hills while the reason for their formation may be attributed to massive deforestation. These are short distance inland streams running for mere 10-15 km. This portion of land is called as Kandi tract in local terms. They are a major cause for soil erosion in this region. The soil in this region is mostly stony and coarse. Hoshiarpur district of Punjab is worst affected by these streams. However, with modernization and development, these chos have been controlled and bridged to avoid their worse effects.

3. Upland Plains:
These refer to interfluvial tracts between Sutlej and Indus. These featureless plains have old alluvium deposits and very low elevation. This region is predominantly known for irrigation through canals. It has augmented agriculture of Punjab.

4. Flood Plains:
Flood plains are typically formed by alluvium deposits of the rivers in monsoon season. They have narrow tracts of 10-15 km. In Punjab, flood plains on western side of rivers are mostly wastelands while those on eastern banks are wide enough for extensive cultivation. Flood plains of Sutlej run from Ropar to Fazilka town in Firozpur. Ghaggar River has wider flood plains running from eastern side of Patiala to Southern end of Mansa and Sangrur. Flood plain of Beas has stretch from Dasuya in Hoshiarpur to Kapurthala while that of Ravi River is existent at some places in Gurdaspur tehsil.

Water Bodies in Punjab

The rivers of Punjab are so closely related to its geography that even the name of state is derived from their existence. In literal terms, Punjab means the land of five rivers. They are integral to its existence and life. Apart from the rivers, the state has numerous seasonal streams called chos formed during rainy season. The main rivers of Punjab are:

Sutlej River:
It is the largest and most important river in Punjab. Though the river originates in Tibet region, it flows enormously in Punjab. Sutlej enters the state in Ropar district and from here; it takes sharp turn towards the western plains. It separates Bist Doab from Malwa Tract. The Bhakra Nangal Dam built on Sutlej is a major hydroelectric power project of India.

Water Bodies in Punjab

Beas River:
This river enters Punjab at Mirthal. With construction of Pong Dam on this river, agriculture has enhanced in tehsils of Gurdaspur, Dasuya and Kapurthala. Beas flows to meet Sutlej in Harike. At this junction, it separates Bist Doaba from upper Bari Doaba. It is around 460 kms in length with catchment area of 20, 000 sq km.

Ravi River:
It is an ancient river that originates in Himachal Pradesh and enters Punjab near Madhopur. From here, Ravi flows towards Indo Pak border to finally join Chenab in Pakistan. The water of this river is allocated to Indian Territory according to Indus Waters Treaty signed between two nations. It has total length of 720 km.

Ghaggar River:
It is also called as Sarasvati and has played important part in evolution of Yamuna Sutlej divide of this region. It is an inland stream that enters the plains of Punjab in Mubarakpur. Then, it flows towards eastern part of Patiala district, lower end of Mansa district, and south of Sangrur district in the state. After that, it leaves Punjab to enter into the state of Rajasthan.

Chos in Punjab:
They are an integral feature of drainage system in Punjab. They originate from Southern slope of Shivalik ranges and run through the foothill zone. Then they either dry up or merge with nearby streams. They have wide beds of sand, gravels, and stones. Their spacing is narrowest in Hoshiarpur district, where you can find them at every one km distance. Earlier, they were primary cause of soil erosion in state but now, these chos are channelized and even dammed to store water for irrigation.

Seasonal Streams in Punjab

Flora and Fauna of Punjab

Plains of Punjab are mostly devoid of dense forests. They mostly have shrubs, bushes, and wild grass. In terms of floral diversity, Shivalik area is the richest and identified as Micro endemic zone as well. It has 70 species of trees and shrubs, 355 of herbs, more than 20 species of twines, and 19 varieties of climbers. Also, it has more than 30 species of pteridophytes, one of gymnosperms, and about 27 species of bryophytes. The state has rich cultivation of fruits that include mango primarily grown in southeast parts of Punjab. Other fruits cultivated here are pomegranate, peach, apple, fig, orange, mulberry, apricot, almond, plum, and quince.

Geographical Beauty of Punjab State

The fauna of Punjab is also quite diverse. It boasts of more than 390 species of birds, 19 species of mammals, more than 200 species of Lepidoptera, 20 of reptiles, and around 55 species of fish. In local rivers, crocodiles are found in abundance while buffaloes can be easily found in grazing lands along the rivers. In northeastern parts of the state, rearing of horses is also very common. Punjab also has venomous species of snakes that include kraits and cobras. Mammals found in this state are wild boar, hog deer, flying fox, squirrel, wild cat, mongoose, smooth coated otter, and black buck.

The state also has many zoological parks, wild life reserves, gardens, and wetlands. They include:

  • Harike Wildlife Sanctuary in Tarn Taran District
  • Hari Ke Pattan Wildlife Sanctuary in Harike
  • Ropar Zoological Park
  • Kanji Wetland
  • Kapurthala Sutlej Wetland
  • Bansar Garden in Sangrur
  • Baradari Garden in Patiala
  • Shalimar Garden in Kapurthala
  • Ram Bagh Garden in Amritsar
  • Aam Khas Bagh in Sirhind

Climate of Punjab

Punjab has diversified climatic conditions ranging from semi arid to sub humid. It is characterized by two major seasons. The summers are extremely hot while winters are chilling cold in this state. Annual temperature dwells between the extreme limit of 49 degrees Celsius and lower limits of 0 degrees Celsius.

Summers in Punjab are blistering hot with low rainfall and relative humidity. June is the hottest month with average temperature between 30-35 degrees Celsius.

Climatic Conditions in Punjab

Rainy season begins with arrival of monsoons in July month. During this season, relative humidity is slightly high with average rainfall of 60 cm. Different parts of the state receive different amount of rainfall. Areas of Shvalik ranges have average rainfall of 150 cm while Southwest regions have only 25 cm of rainfall. Rainfall is heavy in monsoon months from July to mid of September.

Winter season arrives from mid of November. Period from mid December to mid January is the coldest in Punjab. Mean temperature durng this season falls below 20 degrees Celsius in the state. Frost prevails in chilling winters along with some drizzles of rain caused by western cyclones.

Seasons in Punjab

Before the onset of winters, Punjab has moderate climate in autumn season. During this period, weather remains dry but quite enjoyable.

Spring season after winter is generally short timed in Punjab. It is also interrupted by some rainfall and hailstorms. Hailstorms are common in months of March and April in Punjab. They are caused by regional turbulences in the nearby regions.

Three Seasons in Punjab:
Summer Season- From April to June
Monsoon Season- From July to September
Winter season- From December to February

Also Read: Geography of Abohar | Geography of Ajitgarh | Geography of Amritsar | Amritsar History | Geography of Barnala | Geography of Batala | Geography of Bathinda | Geography of Firozpur | Geography of Hoshiarpur | Geography of Jalandhar | Geography of Kapurthala | Geography of Khanna | Geography of Ludhiana | Geography of Moga | Geography in Pathankot | Geography of Patiala

Economy and Business in Punjab

Economy of Punjab has its base upon agriculture and its allied industries. Punjab is reckoned as one of the pioneer states in development of business and economy. This is because of rapid growth of infrastructure and advance technology. It ranks apex in states. It is a state where you can find all modes of transport, maximum power generation, dense water supply, and other economical developments.

Economy and Business in Punjab

In Punjab, you will find that every city and village is well connected through metal roads and railways. Government of India has included Punjab under the proposed Eastern Rail Freight Corridor which will provide its exclusive connectivity with eastern part of India, i.e. up to Dankuni in West Bengal through Bihar via Delhi. Efforts are also being made to link up Punjab with Western Freight Corridor for efficient movement of production capacities. Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Amritsar, Bathinda, Patiala, Faridkot, Sangrur, Mohali, Batala, Rajpura, and Firozpur are recognized bigger towns of Punjab which consist major proportion of GDP (Gross Domestic Production) in economy of state.

Agriculture in Punjab

Punjab is the state in which five rivers are flowing through it. The name itself emerged as Punj meaning five and Aab meaning rivers in Punjabi language. Due to which, the state possesses the most fertile soil in northern part of India. So, Agriculture is most suited occupation in all the regions of Punjab. In fact, Punjab is also called as break basket of India. This is because, crops like maize, barley, rice, sugarcane, cotton, pearl millet, and wheat are produced here in large quantity. Punjab contributes nearly 4% of wheat and 15 % of rice in the total production of India. Rabi and kharif, two types of cultivation pattern is followed in the state. In Rabi (spring harvest), farming of vegetable, wheat, potatoes, gram, and barley is quite common while in kharif (autumn harvest) maize, rice, sugarcane, pulses, and cotton agriculture is suitable.

Agriculture Development in Punjab

Punjab has made significant growth in production of food grains in last two decades. It is averagely giving the output above 290 lakh metric tonnes. The government is emphasizing on plantation of citrus fruit orchards in the state. They have formed Citrus Council to initiate dedicated efforts for this kind of farming and nearly 2200 acres of farming land has been brought under citrus plantation in recent past. With efforts in infrastructure development such transportation of perishable goods, apart from customary wheat and rice farming, more crops and fruits cultivation is planned in the region of Punjab.

Animal Husbandry and Dairy Farming in Punjab

Animal Husbandry is an important element of state economy. Livestock contributes approximately 7.25% to state GDP. The state of Punjab posses 76 milk plants along with chilling station to develop dairy industry. The state produces approximately 262 lakh Kg per day milk with the network of such developed infrastructure. There is large setup of poultry farm as well. Punjab produces 3603 million eggs on an average every year.

Government Support to Business in Punjab

To support and develop healthy livestock, government has set up organizations such as College of Dairy Science and Technology as well as Veterinary Polytechnic College. Also, 1485 veterinary dispensaries and 1367 veterinary hospitals are incepted in the region of Punjab along with 19 well planned polyclinics.

Industries in Punjab

Industry is an important part of economy and plays impeccable role in development of region. As agriculture is the main source of economy in Punjab, business and industries also revolves around this sector. Punjab has nearly 475 numbers of medium and large scale units while number of small scale industries is more than 1.72 lacks. Industries in Punjab are divided in three basic form, agro based, machinery based, and chemical based industries. These medium and large scale industries are generating 2.7 lack employments for skilled people while small units generate nearly 10.6 lakhs employment for all kinds of job seekers.

Industrial Development of Punjab

Realizing the need of industrial growth, the state government has incepted new ideas and modern thoughts in this field. Special Economic Zone Act 2009 has been passed to incept SEZ (special economic zone) to offer dedicate setup for new industries in the state. Special benefits of exemptions in duty free zone are made to attract new investors in Punjab.

Main types of industries in Punjab:

Textile Industries in Punjab

Punjab is one of the major producers of good quality cotton. Due to easy availability of raw material, many textile industries are established in the region of Punjab. The major cotton mills are situated around the city of Ludhiana, Amritsar, Mohali, Phagwara, Abohar, Kharar, Bathinda and Malout. The state manufacture products from cotton worth Rs 1 lakh million yearly, in which one third is of export quality for overseas markets. The state of Punjab shares 12 % in total production of cotton bales in the country. Textile industries generate approximately 2 million jobs for skilled and unskilled citizens of Punjab.

Sugar Industries in Punjab

Large quantity of sugarcane is cultivated in the state of Punjab. So, it possesses dense network of sugar mills located at Mukerian, Lauhka, Patran, Faridkot, Tarn Taran, Jagraon, Ajnala, Dasuya, Batala, Bhogpur, Gurdaspur, Phagwara, Zira, Rakhra, Morinda, Nawanshahar, Dhuri, Nakodar, Fazika, Budhewal, and Budhladha. This mills run under the umbrella of co- operative and nearly 15 mills out of 22 are operated through joint holding.

Agro and food processing Industries in PunjabTypes of Industries in Punjab

Due to developed system and better connectivity of rural areas, Punjab has shown unprecedented growth in recent years. As such the agriculture rich state of India is leading in the field of agro based and food processing industries. It has more than 30 million metric tonnes of food grain production per year.

The mechanization in farm sector with good availability of power and irrigation facilities has also led to this development. The state also has better sales facilities with 150 principal yards, 1317 buying centers, and 275 sub market yards located across the state.

There are excellent institutes for agricultural training and research along with efficient lab testing facilities. Cotton is the principal crop grown here along with wheat.

National and Multinational Companies in Punjab:

Punjab has many multinational companies operating in the state. They contribute to the economy of Punjab. Business friendly environment and infrastructure of this state has induced these companies to set up their units here. Some of the leading companies present in Punjab are:
  • Pepsico
  • Nestle
  • Nippon
  • Glaxo Smithkline
  • Fujitsu
  • Hitachi
  • Motorola
  • Dumax
  • Kenwood
  • Ollivetti, Italy
  • Ranbaxy
  • Godrej Washing Machine
  • JCT textiles
  • Oswal
  • Hero Cycles
  • ACC
  • JIL
  • Gujarat Ambuja
  • Milkfed Punjab

Factors contributing to growth of Industries in Punjab:

  • Availability of skilled work force
  • Conducive environment enabled by administration
  • High Per capita income of the state
  • Agricultural and small scale industrial development
  • Affordable water and power supply
  • Well laid out financial distribution system
  • Proper facilities for better industrial relations and export growth

Government Organizations to Support Business and Economy of Punjab

Punjab Small Industries and Export Corporation Ltd:

To provide health atmosphere to groom small scale industries in the state of Punjab, PSIEC (Punjab Small Industries and Export Corporation Ltd) has been embarked on state level. A separate association of industries is commenced at every industrial area to look into the matters of infrastructure development for industries. The organization is looking to increase export opportunities in this region. Industrial park or Industrial mixed used park is set in Kapurthala in area of 226 acres for developing export strength of state. Currently, they have export value of 24 thousand crore on an average.

Government Departments to Support Industries in PunjabPunjab Agro Industries Corporation Ltd.:

It is a nodal agency appointed by state government to watch the proceedings of industries which are allied to Agriculture. The corporation has responsibility of preparing thorough project reports of industries which could be ideal in that location.

They take opportunity to identify the prospects as well to endeavor the work of establishing industry. It also participates in the equity capital of industries which may vary from 11% to 26%.

As of now, PAIC has launched 44 agro projects such as horticulture, chemical fertilizers, and agriculture production by investing nearly Rs. 705 crore along with approving nearly 57 mega projects in this concern. Institute offers complete support of acquiring government licenses, sanctions and permits.

Punjab Information & Communication Technology Corporation Ltd (INFOTECH)

Punjab infotech is commenced in state to provide comprehensive environment to entrepreneurs who desire to set up computer software institute in Punjab. It is like an incubation center that offer complete plug and play type facility for new businessmen. They provide complete baggage of ready to move infrastructure accomplished with telephone lines, voice mails, broadband connection, conference rooms, etc. IT sector is booming in the state of Punjab and showing double digit growth. Punjab Information & Communication Technology Corporation Ltd in association with state government has established STPI center in the region of Mohali.

Punjab State Industrial Development Corporation Ltd

PSIDC is one the government undertakings which is endeavored to develop overall growth of industries. It acts as a state level financial institution as well as institutional promoter. To boost the industrial revolution in Punjab, it has taken initiatives to encourage setup of oil refinery projects along with laying gas pipeline and optic fibre cable. Even Plastic Park is proposed to be built near refinery.

Energy and Power Supply in Punjab:

Electricity is important component of economic growth in Punjab. For efficient working of power generation and supply in this region, the government has incepted numbers of hydropower and thermal power plants. Punjab State Power Corporation Ltd aims to make Punjab power surplus state with hundred percent efficient generation and distribution of energy.

Power plants in Punjab:
  • Bathinda, Guru Nanakdev Thermal Plant
  • Ropar, Guru Gobind Singh Thermal Power Plant
  • Bathinda, Guru Hargobind Singh Thermal Power Plant
  • Shahpur Kandi Hydro Electric
  • Mukerian Hydel Channel

Apart from these industries and agriculture based businesses, Punjab also has huge potential in the fields like tourism, handicrafts and real estate sector. The state is making fast progress in all these directions with the help of local artisans, entrepreneurs, and state government.

Also Read: Economy of Abohar | Business  in Amritsar | Business and Economy of Batala | Business and Economy of Bathinda | Business and Economy in Firozpur | Business in Hoshiarpur | Business in Jalandhar | Business and Economy in Khanna | Business in Ludhiana | Business and Economy of Pathankot | Business in Patiala

Society in Punjab

Basically Punjab is agriculture centric society and people here hail from farming background. Variability in population depends upon socio economic conditions of this state. Currently, Punjab has more than 12,000 villages located within 22 districts. There are well developed metro cities, towns, satellite towns, and villages where people find best living conditions. However, there are some adversities as well. Social imbalances give rise to inequality and injustice in society.

Societal development in Punjab

Punjab government has established Social Welfare Department that looks after the affairs of social welfare. They act more responsibly and are liable to bring social justification in society. For smoother running of welfare functions, Ministry of Social Welfare along with departments is engaged in uplifting all corners of society simultaneously. Social welfare is constituted with two major departments, namely Samajik Nyay Aur Adhikarita Vibhag (Social Welfare Department Punjab and Empowerment) and Nishaktat Karya Vibhag (Department of Disability Affairs).

Aim of Social Welfare Department and Empowerment in Punjab

  • Planning and implementation of policies related to Scheduled Castes, Backward Class, Tribes, Senior Citizens, and Economically Backward Class.
  • Special efforts and schemes are implemented to support education for backward groups. It also aims to provide economic empowerment. Skill training, scholarship, hostels, school, subsidized loan, etc are offered to such groups to accentuate their pace of growth.
  • Support and care programs are organized keeping senior citizens in mind. They are provided with accommodations, pension scheme, health care, and treatment.
  • They work to rehabilitate people addicted to drugs, alcohol, or other abusive substances. They organize camps in association with NGOs to spread awareness in society regarding these substances. They also run drug rehab centers for addicted peoples.
  • The department is responsible for implementing treaties of international conventions and agreement taking place on government’s behalf.
  • They are responsible to protect rights of citizen and defend the Act of 1955 in public interest.

Societal Changes Initiated by Government of Punjab

Aim of Department of Disability Affairs in Punjab

  • Distribution of donated goods or relief material supplied from foreign countries. Also look into the matters of duty free import of such materials under Indo-UK, Indo US, Indo Swiss, etc agreements.
  • They are responsible to provide relief for disabled individuals who are unemployable. They ensure social security and assurance for physically disabled persons.
  • They train and educate such disabled person to bring them in main stream of life. They provide aid for disabled such as scholarship, skill training, and subsidized as well as easy loans along with setting up o0f disability compatible school in this region.
  • They ensure to give equal opportunities to disabled persons. They give maximum chance of participation and responsibility to protect their rights as well.

NGOs in Punjab

To initiate the social work in Punjab, the state has many Non Government Organizations (NGOs) working here. These organizations work with support of government authorities and private individuals/groups. As such, they aim to bridge the gap between the privileged and under privileged people of Punjab. Some of the main NGOs working in Punjab are:

Pahal is social initiative operated in various cities of Punjab under the leadership of Lakhbir Singh. This NGO is engaged in the social programs related to environment, health, women welfare, children welfare, and uplifting of people living below poverty line. They organize blood donation camps, environment awareness, and medical camps for such people.
36, New Vivekanand Park, Maqsudan, Jalandhar
Phone No: 0181- 2672784, 9814866230
Email: pahalasadi@gmail.com, info@pahal-ngo.org, lakhbirsingh@pahal-ngo.org

Salam Zindagi Foundation:
Salam Zindagi Foundation is unique initiative incepted in the region of Ludhiana to support children suffering from Thalassemia. They organize camps and programs to spread awareness among the people. They encourage people to donate blood for such patients and allow them to live normal life.
Saw Mill Street, Joshi Nagar, Haibowal, Ludhiana, Punjab
Phone No: 9814704064, 9417681719
Email: info@salaamzindagi.com

Organizations working for societal development of PunjabSociety for Service to Voluntary Agency (North) Punjab:

Popularly known as SOSVA, it is one of the renowned non government organizations that endeavor social services in the region of Punjab.

They undertake social causes such as child health, women empowerment, drug de-addiction, child education and HIV/ Aids. This NGO basically provide support to field NGO that works on grass root level to penetrate deep into society.

Phone No: 0172- 2744197, 2746258
Email: sosva.pb@gmail.com

Aagaz NGO:
Established under the Societies Registration Act 1860, Aagaz is one of the all round NGOs of Punjab. It is engaged in the social causes related to rural and urban areas. They empower and uplift the lifestyle of under privileged people, especially women and poor children. Also, they undertake programs of skill training, career or physiology counseling, environment conservation, and solve problems like child abuse and women inequalities.
655, Gurdeb Nagar, Pakhowal Road, Ludhiana
Phone No: 8146639291
Email: info@aagaz.org

Umeed NGO:
Umeed is envisioned with scope of providing light of courage and inspiration to underprivileged people in Punjab. It is working under the guidance of Arvind Khanna to uplift deprived and poor people of society. They are more centric for women empowerment, skill development, health issues, and employment generation.
Gaushala Road, Opposite New Grain Market, Sangarur, Punjab
Phone No: 01672- 236744
Email: sangruroffice@umeedonline.com

Kiran Society of Creative Women:
Kiran is a social NGO based in Amritsar to promote children and women welfare in society. They work at deeper section of society and spread awareness regarding health, education, social empowerment, etc. They emphasizes on crucial issues such as water conservation, girl child, voting campaign, and other such.

Aashray NGO:Major NGOs in Punjab
Aashray is incepted in the region of Jalandhar to offer children welfare as well as animal wellness. They support unprivileged children in society with proper accommodation, health, education, and living.

The society also initiates programs to protect birds and provide them with food as well as shelter.

62, Vasant Avenue, Jalandhar
Phone No: 9814064303
Email: kaysanjiv@yahoo.com

Shaheed Ajit Singh Naujawan Society is one of the upcoming welfare societies registered in the year 2010, working for under privileged children and women. To serve humanity is the main motto of this society. They fight against social evil and environmental degradation to manage humanity in society.
Mohalla Mohidru, Jalandhar
Phone No:
Email: sans.ngo@gmail.com

Arpan NGO:
Arpan NGO is one of the on field social activists located in the region of Ropar. It is engaged in uplifting lifestyle of women, children and backward people. They are helping under privileged sections of society to empower and provide them basic needs.
Near Govt Primary School, Dobhetta, Ropar
Phone No: 0887- 224741, 9417563054
Email: arpansociety@gmail.com

Globe Peace Mission:
Globe Peace Mission is one of the pioneer social organizations based in the region of Batala. It organizes the awareness programs about literacy, education, rural development, legal awareness, and HIV. They arrange vocational training, nutritional programs, youth affairs, and actively participate in saving drinking water and environment.
SCF 22, Diamond Avenue, Opposite Dharampura, Batala
Phone No: 01871- 501151
Email: globepeace4@gmail.com

Green Foundation:
Green Foundation is engaged in environmental concerns which are rising at alarming rate around the globe. It has large numbers of volunteers and activists that organizes several programs throughout the year to promote tree plantation and spread awareness regarding environment.
Green Foundation, Pheruman Chowk, Kotkapura
Phone No: 01635- 224898
Email: green55group@gmail.com

Helping Hands Club:
Helping Hand is exceptional welfare society that emphasizes on blood donation awareness programs. They are dedicated and looking for zero death due to shortage of blood or its components. They also provide essentials to poor and unprivileged children or women in society.
Chowk Hira Halwai Gokul Road, Ludhiana
Phone No: 0161- 2725480, 9569155556
Email: helpinghandsclub@in.com
Nishkamm Sewa Ashram:
Nishkam Sewa Ashram Trust NGO is incepted in the region of Ludhiana since 35 years. It provides accommodation to mentally retarded people and unfortunate aged citizens of Punjab. They run training programs for unskilled, awareness camps for child abuse, health concerns.
Village Daad, Po Lalton Kalan, Pakhowal Road, Ludhiana
Phone No: 0161- 2806283, 9814697524
Email: nishkamsewaashram@rediffmail.com

Paryas Welfare Society:
Paryas Welfare Society, located in Firozpur Cantt area is one of all round socially active organizations that offers endless support to different problems of society. They encourage children for education by providing books and school accessories to needy students. They provide utmost support to handicapped and unfortunate people.
House No. 212, Bazar No. 1, Firozpur Cantt., Punjab
Phone No: 01632- 503564, 988928564
Email: pan.adv74@yahoo.com

With this completely detailed profile of Punjab state, you can know about the state and its potential in various fields. The rich history and diverse geography of Punjab also makes it a unique state of India.

Also Read: Society in Abohar | Society in Amritsar | Society in Batala | Society in Bathinda | Society in Firozpur | Society in Hoshiarpur | Social Welfare in Jalandhar | Society of Kapurthala | Society in Khanna | Society of Ludhiana | Welfare Societies in Moga | Womens Welfare in Patiala

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