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India By State - Maharashtra - State Overivew

State Overview


Economic Snapshot

Economic Snapshot

Capital Mumbai
Area (sq km) 308,000
Population (Census 2001, million) 96.9
Literacy Rate (%) 77
Human Development Index 0.523 (all India rank 4th)
NSDP Growth (2000-01 to 2007-08) 15.7 per cent (average annual)
NSDP at current prices in 200-08 US$ 125.6 billion
Annual Per Capita Income at current prices in 2004-05 US$ 1369.9
National Highways Length (km) 4,176
Rail Length (km) 5,527
International Airport Mumbai, Pune, Ambedkar
Domestic Airports 10 but the main ones are at Pune, Nagpur, Aurangabad, Nasik, Mumbai
Key Industries Financial Services, Textiles, Auto-ancillaries, Chemical and allied products, Electrical and non-electrical machinery, Petroleum and allied products. Wine, Jewellery, Pharmaceuticals, Engineering goods, Media & Entertainment etc.
Industries with Growth Potential Tourism
Leisure & entertainment


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Maharashtra is the third largest state in India encompassing an area of 308,000 km2. (This covers 9.84% of the total geographical area of India) It is bordered by the states of Madhya Pradesh to the north, Chhattisgarh to the east, Andhra Pradesh to the southeast, Karnataka to the south, and Goa to the southwest. The state of Gujarat lies to the northwest, with the Union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli sandwiched in between. The Arabian Sea makes up Maharashtra's west coast. It has the largest network of roads with total road length of over 2, 67,000 Km. Key financial institutions such as Bombay Stock Exchange, National Stock Exchange, and the Reserve Bank of India are all located here. It is also the sixth largest metropolitan area in the world. Mumbai, the capital city of Maharashtra, is the most populous city.



According to the census 2001, the population of Maharashtra was 96,752,247. The population of the state is the second largest in the country after Uttar Pradesh and ranks 12th in the worldwide rankings of the most populated states in the world.

  • Population Density: 322.5 inhabitants per square km
  • Male Population: 50.3 million
  • Female Population: 46.4 million
  • Urban Population: 42.4%
  • Gender Ratio: 922 females to 1000 males
  • Literacy Rate: 77.27%
  • Male Literacy Rate: 86.2%
  • Female Literacy Rate: 67.5%
  • Decadal Growth Rate: 22.57%
  • Religion: 80.2% Hindu, 10.6% Muslims, 6% Buddhists, 1% Jains, 1% Christians, 1% other.


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Maharashtra is one of the most advanced industrial states in India accounting for almost 15 per cent of the total industrial output of the country. 64.14% of its workforce is engaged in agriculture and other allied activities. Its industrial sector is quite strong and contributes nearly 46% to the GSDP. Chief industries include petroleum, chemicals, textiles, metal products, pharmaceuticals, machine tools, engineering goods, steel and iron castings. Crops cultivated in large quantities in Maharashtra are groundnut, sugarcane, mangoes, turmeric, grapes, bananas, oranges, wheat, rice.

Mumbai, the capital city of Maharashtra is an important business city and has the headquarters of all the prime financial institutions, banks and insurance companies operating in India. Bombay Stock Exchange, the oldest stock exchange in Asia and the largest in India is located in Mumbai.

Its IT sector has witnessed substantial growth over the years. Maharashtra has established software parks in Mumbai, Pune, Nasik, Aurangabad and Nagpur. At present, the state is the second largest exporter of software and accounts for 20% of India's software exports.

The coast of Maharashtra has been serving as a ship building centre since long and has several companies operating shipyards. To name a few, there is Bharati Shipyard at Ratnagiri, Rajapur Shipyards at Rajapur and so on. It has emerged as one of the most potential sectors for development and growth.

In generating thermal electricity, Maharashtra is the leading state in India. Even in the nuclear power sector, it is doing extremely well. It accounts for 13 percent of thermal power and 17 percent of nuclear power produced in the country.

During the period between 2000-01 and 2007-08, the state registered an annual average growth percentage of 15.7 and it is noteworthy that it is the first state to progress at a rate above 9 percent.

The Net State Domestic Product of Maharashtra for the fiscal year 2007-08 stood at US$ 125.6 billion and its per capita income for the same period was US$ 1,369.9. The State contributes 40 per cent of the national fiscal receipts and 8.17 per cent to the total GDP. Of the country's total investment, the state accounts for 20 per cent.


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Physical Infrastructure



Maharashtra has five domestic airports and three international airports at Mumbai, Pune, and Ambedkhar. Sahara (International) and Santa Cruz (Domestic) are the two airports in Mumbai. Flights are operated by both private and government airline companies.


There are nearly 53 minor ports in Maharashtra. Most of these handle passenger traffic and have a limited capacity. The two principal ports, Jawaharlal Nehru Port (JNPT) and Mumbai Port, which are at Mumbai, are under the control and supervision of the government of India.

JNPT is the country's largest container port, with container traffic of over 4.1 million 20-foot-equivalent unit (TEUs) in 2007-08. It also ranks among the top 30 container ports in the world. JNPT has a container terminal, which has been developed through private investment on a build-operate-transfer (BOT) basis.


Most of the key places in India are connected by rail to Mumbai. Mumbai is the hub of the railway network in Maharashtra having three major railway stations and the headquarters of two Railway Zones in India. Mumbai is the Headquarters for both, Western and Central Railways. Regular train services connect Mumbai with all the major towns & cities in India.

The rail transport system of Maharashtra is very well developed. The state is well-connected to other parts of the country with a railway network spanning 5,527 km, of which 78.6 per cent is of broad-gauge, 7.8 per cent is of meter-gauge and 13.6 per cent is of narrow-gauge.

Road Transport

Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation's buses ply on over 19,000 routes in the state, covering 1.2 million km. The Corporation has nearly 16000 buses. In addition to the government services, cities have private and non-private taxis, auto-rickshaws, and intra-city buses, which run efficiently.

In Mumbai, the city bus service run by the Bombay Electric Supply and Transportation Undertaking, popularly known as BEST, and local trains are regarded to be the most extensive and well-run public transport systems in the world. The BEST buses carry approximately 4.2 million passengers per day, while local train carries 23 million commuters everyday.


Maharashtra has the largest installed electricity generation capacity in the country. Its capacity to generate electricity has increased from 11717.11 MW to 15 034 MW between 1998-99 and 2008-09. It has a captive power producing capacity of 704 MW. The state's industrial sector is the largest consumer of power followed by the domestic agricultural sector.

Its thermal power constitutes a large part of its installed generating capacity. It accounts for almost 86 percent followed by hydro power. Maharashtra is among the few states in the country with significant presence of private sector players in the electricity generation and distribution business.


The State of Maharashtra witnessed rapid development in the telecommunications sector during the past decade, and with 31.03 million subscribers in 2009, the state is presently the 2nd largest GSM market. The growth in mobile telephony has been equally impressive with a total number of 4939 telephone exchanges with 2,075,533 mobile phone subscribers. By March 2007, the number of PCOs under MTNL and BSNL were 0.16 million and 0.24 million respectively. As per the statistics obtained by the end of September 2007, the number of cell phone users per hundred thousand people in Maharashtra was 26,001.


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Social Infrastructure


Maharashtra has the second highest literacy next to Kerala. The literacy rate in the state increased from 65 per cent in 1991 to 77 per cent in 2001. It boasts of a well developed infrastructure consisting of 10 universities, 2618 higher education institutions, and 72 053 primary and 20 339 secondary schools. It has 549 engineering colleges with an annual intake of over 100 000 students. The total number of Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) in Maharashtra is 617 and architectural colleges are 53 having a total annual intake of over 95,000 and 2500 respectively. The capital city of Maharashtra Mumbai has one of the six Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs).

The state houses some of the reputed national Research and Development institutes such as Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), National Chemical Lab, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, National Environmental Engineering Research Institute and Bhabha Atomic Research Centre.

This strong network of institutes makes available a pool of qualified professionals to the numerous businesses and industries in the state and the country. Some of the reputed business management institutes in Maharashtra include Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, Central Institute for Business Management, Research and Development, Training & Advanced Studies in Management and Communications Ltd., Indian Centre for Management & Human Resource Development (ICMHRD) and Institute for Technology & Management.

Internationally reputed firms including Intel, Texas Instruments and Analog Devices have collaborated with IIT, Mumbai, to set up world-class laboratory facilities in areas of digital signal processing and microprocessors.


The State consists of 253 Medical Institutes along with 136 Nursing Colleges, with an annual student intake of over 10926 and 3500 respectively. There are 964 hospitals, 2,081 dispensaries and 1,806 Primary Health Centres, which form the network of Public and Government-aided health facilities in the State. These facilities have 92,106 beds in total, meaning that 930 people out of every million can be accommodated in the State. This well developed infrastructure, allows Maharashtra to provide ample healthcare to a high standard.


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Industrial Infrastructure


Mumbai is the capital of Maharashtra, is the most populous city in the country. Mumbai has an international airport and two major ports, Mumbai and Nhava Sheva. Mumbai is recognised as the fourth largest urban agglomeration world over. It is the financial and commercial hub of India with headquarters for most Indian and multinational banks, financial institutions and insurance companies including Reserve Bank of India, Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Barclays, Deutsche Bank etc. Mumbai is also the centre of India's thriving Film and Entertainment Industry, producing over 800 movies each year.


Pune is the second largest city in Maharashtra and sixth largest city in the country with a population of 7.2 million. The literacy rate is about 81 percent which is quite high if compared with the all India average literacy. Pune is a prominent hub for automobile and IT industries, housing a large number of national and international players including Tata Motors, Bajaj Auto, Daimler Chrysler, Fiat, Bharat Forge, Tata Consultancy Services, Infosys and Wipro, among others. It is also a prominent education centre with a presence of over 100 colleges and institutions.

It has 12 industrial areas focusing on automobiles, chemicals, consumer durables, engineering and Information Technology. Pune is a potential destination for automobiles and auto components, engineering, food processing, leisure & entertainment and biotechnology industries located in the state.


The City of Nashik, apart from being an important Commercial and Religious centre in the State, ranks third from an industrial point of view and is one of the most rapidly developing cities in Maharashtra. Nashik has a population of 4.9 million. The city also plays a significant role in the Automobile, Auto-components, Engineering and Grape processing Industry.

The major companies in Nashik include Mahindra & Mahindra, Schneider Electric, Siemens and Crompton Greaves. The city is also a highly potential destination for Engineering, Food Processing and Biotechnology Industries in the State.


One key advantage of Nagpur, is its central location and therefore excellent road and rail connectivity to all parts of India. The city has a population of 4.5 million and its unique location in the Indian sub continent makes it a viable Passenger and Cargo Hub. It is a growing industrial centre and presently has 10 industrial areas. Reputed companies such as Indo-Rama Synthetics. Electrolux, and Voltas are housed in this city. Nagpur provides a potential destination for industries such as Food processing, Chemicals and Engineering.

Development Potential

It is clear that the economic development of Maharashtra is at a relatively advanced stage, and so it is in a good position to exploit its strengths in increase the pace of economic development. While the state's dominance in the industrial sector is increasing, its relatively well-developed infrastructure and the existing upstream and downstream industrial linkages provide an edge. Maharashtra is also well placed to significantly benefit from the on-going boom in the services sector, with its high per capita income and large urban population.


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More Information on Maharashtra

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