Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Modern Baroda

 
Modern Baroda is a great and fitting memorial to its late ruler, Sayaji Rao Gaekwad III (1875-1939 AD). It was the dream of this able administrator to make Baroda an educational, industrial and commercial centre and he ensured that his dream would come true.
Baroda is situated on the banks of the river Vishwamitri (whose name is derived from the great saint Rishi Vishwamitra). The city was once called Chandravati, after its ruler Raja Chandan, then Viravati, the abode of the brave, and then Vadpatra because of the abundance of banyan trees on the banks of the Vishwamitri. From Vadpatra it derived its present name Baroda or Vadodara.
Baroda has a rich historical background. The ardent historian can trace Baroda’s history over 2000 years and more. However, the recent threads can be picked up when the Moghul rule over the city came to an end in 1732, when Pilaji brought the Maratha activities in Southern Gujarat to a head and captured it. Except for a short break, Baroda continued to be in the hands of the Gaekwads from 1734 to 1949.
The greatest period in the Maratha rule of Baroda started with the accession of Maharaja Sayajirao III in 1875. It was an era of great progress and constructive achievements in all fields.
Maharaja Sayajirao was one of the foremost administrators and reformers of his times. He initiated a series of bold socio-economic reforms. He attached great importance to economic development and started a number of model industries to encourage initiative, and then handed back the working industries to private enterprise. He started model textile and tile factories. It is as a result of his policy of industrial development that Baroda is today one of the most important centres for textile, chemical and oil industries today. He introduced a number of social reforms. In no department of administration has the far-sighted policy of this wise ruler been more conspicuous than in education, and in none have the results been more real and tangible. He boldly introduced compulsory primary education and a library movement (the first of its kind in India) to augment his adult education scheme.
It was he who visualised a general scheme of development in all branches of knowledge at different stages, with the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda at the apex. Modern Baroda owes its beauty, its educational institutions and its masterpieces of architecture to the insight and vision of this great ruler.
There is a saying that nothing grows under the banyan tree, but this is not true of Baroda. Having witnessed the rise and fall of the empires and kingdoms of the Hindus, Pathans, Moghuls and Marathas, it now occupies a unique position on the educational, cultural and industrial map of India. Yet, it has been fortunate enough to retain the beauty of its rich and varied past. And it is one of the few cities in India which is still influenced by the lost might of its ruling dynasties.
The People & Culture
The people of Baroda like to tell visitors that their city is a ‘Sanskari Nagari’, that is, a ‘cultured city’. By and large, the visitors agree. The city does indeed have rich cultural traditions. And today’s Barodians have quite a full and hectic cultural life throughout the year.
The outstanding trait about Baroda’s cultural life is that it is remarkably cosmopolitan. And while there are hundreds of different identities, everyone participates in all activities. So, the culture of the city is not just history or heritage; it is dynamic, ever-changing and alive.
Yes, Baroda is one of India’s most cosmopolitan cities. Thanks to the vision and broadmindedness of the Gaikwads, the subsequent industrialisation, the proliferation of academic activities and a strategically important geographical location, Baroda has welcomed a wide variety of people from all over India and also from all over the world.
More or less every Indian community has an active identity in this city. And this happy co-existence is reflected in the social and cultural life of the people. In all of this, the sprawling and cosmopolitan MS University campus and the large number of local, national and foreign industries act as a catalysing and unifying force.
The average Barodian is open to the world and overflowing with hospitality, as the history and growth of the city aptly testify.
If you want to see Baroda’s cultural enthusiasm, you should visit this city during any festive occasion Navratri, Diwali, Ganesh Chaturthi, Id, New Year, Uttarayan, Holi, campus fun fairs, etc. On any given day, some cultural activity or the other is going on in the city. Classical music and dance have their patrons, and so does the modern stage and pop culture. The culture and the traditions are both alive and being forever experimented with.
Can you expect anything less from a city which is blessed by its geography and its history, which is the home of a vibrant internationally renowned university and which is a key component of India’s industrial base? The people of Baroda have not only hung on to the cultural heritage, they embellish it as they exuberantly go on with their daily lives.
The official language of Gujarat is Gujarati, but Hindi, Marathi and English are also widely used in Baroda. State and local government offices in the city use both Gujarati and English, Central government offices use English and Hindi and industrial and commercial organisations use English. The medium of instruction at the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda (MSU) is English. The medium of instruction in the city’s schools varies Gujarati, Marathi, Hindi, English, etc.
The cultural life is of course in many languages. And on the streets, in the markets and at other public places you can hear ‘AKHA INDIA’ (the whole of India).
Industry & Commerce
Baroda enjoys a special place in the state of Gujarat. Till the early 1960’s Baroda was considered to be a cultural and educational centre. The first modern factory (Alembic Pharmaceuticals) was established in Baroda in 1907 and subsequently companies such as Sarabhai Chemicals, Jyoti, etc., came up in the 1940s. By 1962 there were 288 factories employing 27510 workers. At that time, the dominant industrial groups were chemicals and pharmaceuticals, cotton textiles and machine tools.
In 1962, Baroda witnessed a sudden spurt in industrial activity with the establishment of Gujarat Refinery. Several factors like raw material availability, product demand, skillful mobilisation of human, financial and material resources by the government and private entrepreneurs have contributed to Baroda becoming one of India’s foremost industrial centres.
The discovery of oil and gas in Ankleshwar and North Gujarat led to the industrial development of Gujarat in a big way. The Baroda region is the largest beneficiary in the process of this industrialisation. Gujarat Refinery went into the first phase of production in 1965. The refinery being a basic industry made vital contributions on several fronts at the regional and national levels.
In Baroda various large-scale industries such as Gujarat State Fertilisers & Chemicals, Indian Petrochemicals Corporation Limited and Gujarat Alkalies and Chemicals Limited have come up in the vicinity of Gujarat Refinery and all of them are dependent on it for their fuel and feedstock. Other large-scale public sector units are Heavy Water Project and Gujarat Industries Power Company Limited. In addition to these public sector enterprises, a number of other large-scale enterprises have come up in the private sector. The products of these industries have wide applications in various sectors of the Indian economy.
The establishment of large industrial units in a region automatically brings into existence a number of smaller enterprises. Baroda is no exception and the city and the surrounding areas are today humming with industrial activity.
The industrialisation of Baroda has attracted entrepreneurs not only from Baroda but also from all over Gujarat and India. A large number of the entrepreneurs come with sound business backgrounds and the level of education and technical skills is exceptionally high.
Education
Baroda is synonymous with education. The patronage of education started with Maharaja Sayajirao and the city has built further on the academic infrastructure established by him.
The present educational foundation rests on over 20 public schools and over 100 private schools. Towering benevolently over all is the Maharaja Sayajirao University, the jewel in the Baroda crown, so to speak. MSU is the only university in Gujarat with English as the medium of instruction. It has 13 faculties and 17 residential hostels, 4 of them for women students. The university caters to over 30,000 students.

Baroda City of Gujarat State
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Population:1,200,000:
Telephone Area Code:0265
Baroda was the capital of the princely Gaekwad state prior to Independence. Today Baroda is a pleasant, medium-sized city with some interesting museums and art galleries and a fine park. The city's Fine Arts College attracts students from around the country and abroad.
Guidance !
The railway station, bus stand and a cluster of econimical hotels are all on the west side of the Vishwarmurti River, which bisects the city. The state tourist office, Gujarat Tourism (n' 427489) is on the ground floor of Narmada Bhavan, not far from the Kirti Mandir. It's open daily from 10.30 am to 6 pm except Sunday. There's also a Municipal Tourist Office ('o 329656) opposite the railway station. Tilak Rd runs straight out from the station, across the river by Sayaji Bagh park and into the main part of town. The State Bank of India, near the Kirti Mandir, is open from 1 I am to 3 pm Monday to Friday, and I1 am to I pm Saturday.

How to reach !

Air
Indian Airlines (Tele: 328596) has flights from Baroda to Mumbai (US$60). Delhi (US$120) and Ahmedabad (US$25). NEPC Airlines (Tele: 337899) has daily flights to both Mumbai and Ahmedabad.
Bus
The long-distance bus stand is 500m north of the railway station, and there are STC buses to many destinations in Gujarat, western Madhya Pradesh and northern Maharashtra. Buses to Ahmedabad leave at least every 30 minutes (Rs 27, 2 1/2 hours). The private companies all have their offices nearby.
Train
Baroda is l00km south of Ahmedabad by rail and 392km north of Mumbai. As it's on the main Mumbai to Ahmedabad railway line, there are plenty of trains to choose from. Rail fares to Mumbai are Rs 85/395 (2nd/1st class) on the daytime services, or Rs 115/430 for a sleeper (six hours). Fares to Ahmedabad cost Rs 27/114 (two hours). Between Baroda and Ahmedabad you pass through 
Anand, noted for its dairy produce. At the station, hordes of vendors selling bottles of cold milk often besiege passing trains.
Vadodara, formerly known as Baroda, is the forth most populated city in Gujarat. Historical and archaeological findings date this place back to the 9th century when it was a small town called Ankottaka (present Akota) located on the right bank of the river Vishvamitri (whose name is derived from the great saint Rishi Vishwamitra). Ankottaka was a famous centre of Jainism in the 5th and 6th century AD. Some of the Akota bronze images can be seen in the Vadodara Museum. The city was once called Chandanavati after its ruler Raja Chandan of Dor tribe of Rajputs, who wrested it from the Jains. The capital had also another name "Virakshetra" or "Virawati" (a land of warriors). Later on it was known as Vadpatraka or Wadodará, which according to tradition is a corrupt form of the Sanskrit word Vatodar means 'in the heart of the banyan tree'. It is now almost impossible to ascertain when the various changes in the name were made; but early English travellers and merchants mention the town as Brodera, and it is from this that the name Baroda is derived. Again in 1974 the name changed to Vadodara.
Vadodara is the third most-populated city in Gujarat after Ahmedabad and Surat. It is one of four cities in the state with a population of over 1 million, the other being Rajkot. It is also known as the Sayaji Nagari (Sayaji's City after its famous ruler, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III) or Sanskari Nagari (The City of Culture, a reference to its status as the Cultural Capital of Gujarat). Vadodara or Baroda, formerly the capital city of the Gaekwar State, is situated on the banks of the Vishwamitri, a river whose name derived from the great saint Rishi Vishwamitra. It is located southeast of Ahmedabad, 139 km from state capital, Gandhinagar. It is the administrative headquarters of Vadodara District. Both the railway line and national highway connecting Delhi and Mumbai, passes through Vadodara.
Vadodara is home to almost 1.6 million people (as of 2005), the beautiful Lakshmi Vilas Palace and the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda (M.S.U.) which is the largest university in Gujarat. Its famous for the Science, Fine Arts, Performing Arts, Technology, Management, Psychology, Social Work, Law and Medicine streams. It has a high literacy rate by Indian standards of 78% (2001). Major industries include petrochemicals, engineering, pharmaceuticals, plastics and Forex. Famous companies such as ABB, Reliance Industries, Larsen and Toubro, DuPont, Bombardier, ERDA, General Motors Chevrolet, IPCL, ONGC, Sun Pharmaceuticals, GSFC, Alembic, Apollo Tyres, CEAT Limited,Suzlon,Kemrock,GACL, Vasu Healthcare, CG Glass and JCT Electronics all have a strong presence in this city, also it has presence of IT multi-national companies.

The first noted history of the city was of the early trader settlers who settled in the region in 812 AD. The province was mainly Hindu-dominated with Hindu kings ruling till the year 1297. The Gupta Empire was the first power in the region in the early years of the Christian Era. After fierce battles, the region was taken over by the Chalukya Dynasty. Finally, the kingdom was annexed by the Solanki Rajputs. By this time the Muslim rule had spread across India, and the reins of power were then snatched by the Delhi Sultans. The city was ruled for a long time by these Sultans, until they were easily overthrown by the Mughal emperors. The Mughals biggest problem were the mighty Marathas who slowly but eventually took over the region. It became the capital of the Maratha Gaekwads. Sayaji Rao III (1875–1939), a most able ruler, made many public and bureaucratic improvements in the region. Although the British had a major influence on the region, Baroda remained a princely state until Independence. Like many other princely states, Baroda also joined the Dominion of India in 1947.
The eighteenth largest and one of the cosmopolitan cities of India, Vadodara alias Baroda is located on the banks of Vishwamitri River. This garden city is the industrial capital and the third most populated town of Gujarat and also the administrative headquarters of Vadodara District. Due to its rich cultural traditions, the district is referred to as Sanskari Nagari. With many museums and art galleries, this upcoming hub of industries and IT is a favorite spot of tourists. Vadodara was once called Chandravati, after its ruler Raja Chandan, then Virakshetra or Viravati, the abode of the brave and then Vadpatra because of the abundance of banyan trees on the banks of the narmada . From Vadpatra it derived its present name.

Two thousand years ago, there was a small town known as "Ankottaka" (present day Akota) on the western bank of the river Narmada . The earliest mention of Vadodara is in a Granth or charter of 812 that identifies it as "Vadapadraka", a village attached to the nearby town of "Ankottaka". In 600 AD severe floods in the narmada forced the inhabitants to move to the eastern side of the river to a village known as "Vatpatrak" (Leaf of Banyan tree) which developed into Vadodara.
In 1907, a small village and township in Michigan, United States, was named after Baroda.
It is also rumoured that the name Baroda originated from two words Vat which means the Banyan tree and Aodh, which means a tent/canopy. According to a popular legend, the region in and around present day Baroda was full of Banyan trees that formed a dense cover that looked like a huge tent canopy from a distance. Thus the name Baroda stuck.

Vadodara today is a junction on the western railway of the lines leading to Ahmedabad, Delhi & Mumbai. This confirms the historic role of Vadodara in the communication pattern for movements of people and culture. The history of Vadodara city amply bears out its cultural and commercial activities during the last two thousand years. Apart from the traditional stories, knowledge of the history of Vadodara is based mainly on Jain literature and a few old inscriptions pertaining to Vadodara.
Baroda State was a former Indian State in Western India. Baroda's more recent history began when the Maratha general Pilaji Gaekwad conquered Songadh from the Muslim in 1726. Before the Gaekwads captured Baroda, it was ruled by the Babi Nawabs, who were the officers of the Mughal rulers. Mughal rule came to an end in 1732, when Pilaji Rao Gaekwad brought the Maratha campaigns in Southern Gujarat to a head and captured it. Except for a short period, Baroda continued to be in the reign of the Gaekwads from 1734 to 1948. Initially detailed to collect revenue on behalf of the Peshwa in Gujarat, Pilaji Gaekwad remained there to carve out a kingdom for himself. Damajirao, son and successor of Pilaji Gaekwad, defeated the Mughal armies and conquered Baroda in 1734. His successors consolidated their power over large tracts of Gujarat, becoming easily the most powerful rulers in the region. After the Maratha defeat by the Afghans at the Third Battle of Panipat in 1761, control of the empire by the Peshwas weakened as it became a loose confederacy, and the Gaekwad Maharajas ruled the kingdom until Indian independence in 1947. In 1802, the British intervened to defend a Maharaja that had recently inherited the throne from rival claimants, and Vadodara concluded a treaty with the British that recognized the Kingdom as a 'Princely state' and allowed the Maharajas of Baroda internal political sovereignty in return for recognizing British 'Paramountcy', a form of suzerainty where the subject of foreign affairs was completely surrendered.Baroda State

The golden period in the Maratha rule of Baroda started with the accession of Maharaja Sayajirao III in 1875. It was an era of great progress and constructive achievements in all fields. Maharaja Sayajirao III, who ruled from 1875 to 1939, did much to modernise Baroda, establishing compulsory primary education, a library system, a university, and model textile and tile factories, which helped to create Baroda's image as a modern industrial hub. Modern Vadodara is a great and fitting memorial to Maharaja Sayajirao. It was the dream of this able administrator to make Baroda an educational, industrial and commercial centre and he ensured that his dream would come true. For this reason, the city is also referred to as Sayaji Nagari (Sayaji's City).
With India's independence in 1947, the last ruling Maharaja of Baroda State acceded to India. Baroda State was merged into to Bombay State shortly after independence, which was divided into the states of Gujarat and Maharastra in 1960, with Baroda becoming a part of Gujarat.
In recent times, Vadodara was affected by the devastating January 26, 2001 earthquake that struck Gujarat. The city was spared the devastation suffered by some of the other major cities in Gujarat. However there were some casualties as poorly constructed buildings collapsed in the wake of the earthquake and the after shocks.
Vadodara is divided by the Vishwamitri into two physically distinct eastern and western regions. The eastern bank of the river houses the old city, which includes the old fortified city of Vadodara. This part of Vadodara is characterised by packed bazaars, the clustered and barricaded Pol system of shanty buildings, and numerous places of worship. It houses the General Post Office and landmark buildings like Laxmi Vilas Palace, Mandvi area and Nyay Mandir. The colonial period saw the expansion of the city to the western side of Vishwamitri. This part of the city houses educational institutions like the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda (M.S.U.), the Vadodara Railway Station, modern buildings, well-planned residential areas, shopping malls, multiplexes and new business districts centred around harni road, Alkapuri, Nawayard and more recently, the Old Padra Road and Gotri.
Vadodara features a tropical savanna climate under Koppen's Climate classification. There are three main seasons: Summer, Monsoon and Winter. Aside from the monsoon season, the climate is dry. The weather is hot through the months of March to July — the average summer maximum is 36 °C (97 °F), and the average minimum is 23 °C (73 °F). From November to February, the average maximum temperature is 30 °C (85 °F), the average minimum is 15 °C (59 °F), and the climate is extremely dry. Cold northerly winds are responsible for a mild chill in January. The southwest monsoon brings a humid climate from mid-June to mid-September. The average rainfall is 93 cm (36.7 inches), but infrequent heavy torrential rains cause the river to flood. The highest temperature recorded is 47 °C (116 °F) and the lowest is -1 °C (30 °F).
In recent years, Vadodara has suffered from increasing air, water and soil pollution from neighbouring industrial areas. This has also amounted into a constant and uncomfortable increase in average temperatures across all three seasons. Uncontrolled chemical dump from nearby industries has arguably turned the local river Vishwamitri into one big sewer.

Vadodara enjoys a special place in the state of Gujarat. Until the early 1960s Vadodara was considered to be a cultural and educational centre. The first modern factory (Alembic Pharmaceuticals) was established in Vadodara in 1907 and subsequently companies such as Sarabhai Chemicals, and Jyoti came up in the 1940s. By 1962 there were 288 factories employing 27,510 workers. At that time, the dominant industrial groups were chemicals and pharmaceuticals, cotton textiles and machine tools. The establishment of Bank of Baroda by Sayajirao III in 1908 also help industrial growth.
In 1962, Vadodara witnessed a sudden spurt in industrial activity with the establishment of Gujarat Refinery and Indian Oil Corporation Limited at the nearby village of Koyali. Several factors like raw material availability, product demand, skillful mobilisation of human, financial and material resources by the government and private entrepreneurs have contributed to Baroda becoming one of India’s foremost industrial centres.
The discovery of oil and gas in Ankleshwar led to the industrial development of Gujarat in a big way. The Vadodara region is the largest beneficiary in the process of this industrialisation. Gujarat Refinery went into the first phase of production in 1965. The refinery being a basic industry made vital contributions on several fronts at the regional and national levels.
In Vadodara various large-scale industries such as Gujarat State Fertilizers & Chemicals (GSFC), Indian Petrochemicals Corporation Limited (IPCL, now owned by Reliance Industries Limited) and Gujarat Alkalies and Chemicals Limited (GACL) have come up in the vicinity of Gujarat Refinery and all of them are dependent on it for their fuel and feedstock. Other large-scale public sector units are Heavy Water Project, Gujarat Industries Power Company Limited (GIPCL), Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) & Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL). In addition to these public sector enterprises, a number of other large-scale enterprises have come up in the private sector such as Bombardier Transportation, a Canadian company manufacturing the Delhi Metro from its site in Savli. Baroda also has quite a few established manufacturing units such as; General Motors,ALSTOM, ABB, Philips, Panasonic, FAG, Sterling Biotech, Sun Pharmaceuticals and Areva T&D, Bombardier, and GAGL (Gujarat Automotive Gears Limited). There are also a number of glass manufacturing companies in and around Vadodara, including Haldyn Glass, HNG Float Glass and Piramal Glass.
The establishment of large industrial units in a region automatically brings into existence a number of smaller enterprises. Vadodara is no exception and the city and the surrounding areas are today humming with industrial activity. The industrialisation of Vadodara has attracted entrepreneurs not only from Vadodara but also from all over Gujarat and the rest of India.
In line with the 'Knowledge City' vision of the Confederation of Indian Industry, Vadodara is gradually becoming a hub in Gujarat for IT and other development projects.

Vadodara City Officials
Mayor Dr. Jyoti Pandya
Municipal Commissioner MK Das[15]
Police Commissioner Satish Sharma
Vadodara is administered by the Vadodara Mahanagar Seva Sadan(VMSS) . Some of the regions surrounding the city are administered by the Vadodara Urban Development Authority (VUDA). The VMC was established in July 1950 under the Bombay Provincial Corporation Act, 1949. For administrative purposes, the city is divided into four zones and 26 wards.
The two main institutions involved in planning and development in Vadodara are the Vadodara Mahanagar Seva Sadan and the Vadodara Urban Development Authority. The jurisdiction of both these agencies is demarcated clearly not only physically but also functionally. The governing acts for both the institutions differ. The principal responsibility of VUDA is to ensure a holistic development of the Vadodara agglomeration covering an area of 714.56 km². whereas VMC is involved in the development of a limited area of 148 km².
Three corporators are elected from each ward, who in turn elect a mayor. Executive powers are vested in the municipal commissioner, who is an IAS officer appointed by the Gujarat state government. The mayor is responsible for the day-to-day running of the city services, municipal school board, the city bus service, the municipal hospital and the city library.
The City elects 1 member to the Lok Sabha and 5 to the Gujarat Vidhan Sabha. All of the 5 assembly seats of Vadodara were won by the BJP during the legislative elections in 2002. In the 2006 Vadodara Mahanagar Seva Sadan elections, the BJP won 74 seats, 6 seats went to the Congress.
The city is on the major rail and road arteries joining Mumbai with Delhi and Mumbai with Ahmedabad. Due to this Vadodara is known as a Gateway to the Golden Quadrilateral.
Vadodara was part of historic BBCI Railway. Railway had arrived in Vadodara in January 1861. On November 5, 1951 the BBCI Railway was merged with the Saurashtra, Rajputana and Jaipur railways to give rise to the Western Railway. Now, the Vadodara Railway Station belongs to the Western Railway zone of Indian Railways and is a major Junction on the Wstern Railway Main Line. Vadodara junction is Gujarat's Busiest Junction with almost 150 trains passing everyday. One can travel to almost all the parts of India from Vadodara Junction, where there is a Junction of rails from the directions of Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Delhi and Kota (4 sides). It has one of the largest Electric Locomotives Shed in Gujarat and various trains have a loco change over at Vadodara. Trains like Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Jan Shatabdi and important Mail/Express Trains halt at Vadodara Junction. Vadodara has 5 railway stations namely Vadodara Junction (BRC),Pratapnagar, Vishwamitri, Makarpura & Bajwa.

National Highway 8, connecting Delhi and Gandhinagar with Ahmedabad to Mumbai, passes through the city. Vadodara is also connected with Ahmedabad through Indian National Expressway 1, a stretch of 97 km Super Highway with exits at Anand, Nadiad, S.P.Ring Road and finally Ahmedabad.
Public transport vehicles within the city include buses, autorickshaws and taxis. Now there are buses owned by VTCOS for an easy public transportation operated by the private bus operators VTPL which now runs over a hundred buses of 33 and 50 seater configurations. It has taken a lot of two wheeler traffic off the road and helped the people in easy safe and cheap transport service.
Gujarati, Marathi, Hindi and English are the languages spoken in the city.
  • Number of households: 213,540
  • Population density: 9,527/km²
  • Literacy: 76.11% of total population (males 79.21%; females 68.41%)
  • Sex Ratio: 909 Female per 1000 Male[20]
Navarātrī or Garba is the city's largest festival, with song, dance and lights during every October. Many of the residents spend their evenings at their local Garba grounds where local musicians play traditional music while people dance the Raas and Garba dances which often goes on past midnight. This is also a time when the youth are more visible outdoors and until later than other times of the year. The people of Vadodara have preserved the original and the traditional part of the Navarātrī. Garba in baroda attracts a fairly large number of international tourists.
The most followed religion in the city is Hinduism, practised by 90% of the population. The second most followed religion is Islam, followed by 6% of the population. All other religious groups make up the remaining 4% of the city's population.
The recent decision of CII to develop Vadodara as 'KNOWLEDGE CITY'. has been well received by the Barodians all over the world.
The city of Vadodara is also host to one of the strongest AIESEC Chapters of AIESEC India. AIESEC Baroda established in 1995 in Baroda, is currently one of the leading AIESEC Chapters of World, providing over 350 International Exchange opportunities and 150+ Leadership opportunities to young students each year.
Vadodara has a number of newspaper publications. English-language dailies sold in the city are the Times of India, Indian Express and The Economic Times, though none of them are published locally. There are three local Gujarati dailies in the city — Sandesh, Gujarat Samachar and Divya Bhaskar. A large number of national and regional magazines, periodicals and journals are regularly published and circulated across the city. The Gujarati film and television industry has a small but significant presence in the city. The city has five local FM stations: Radio Mirchi (98.3 MHz), now Red FM (93.5 MHz), Big FM (92.7 MHz), Radio City (91.1 MHz) and All India Radio, Vividh Bharti (93.9 MHz). All India Radio is broadcast on the AM band.[23] Satellite radio was launched in nearby city of Ahmedabad by WorldSpace in 2005.[24] Vadodara News Magazine(VNM) is a local news TV channel that covers events in the city. Households receive television through two main cable networks, InCablenet and Siti Cable, while DTH is steadily gaining popularity in Vadodara. A network of optical fibre cables connects almost the entire city. The city's telephone services are provided by landline and mobile operators like BSNL, Reliance Infocomm, Airtel, Vodafone, Idea, Uninor, Videocon and Tata Indicom. Broadband Internet services are provided in most parts of the city by the telecom companies.

Places of interest

  • Malls and Multiplexes: Vadodara Central, 7 Seas, Big Bazaar, Shrim Shalini Mall, D-Mart, Center Square Mall Spencer's Hyper, Reliance Fresh, Reliance Trendz, PVR Deep multiplex, Chandan multiplex, Inox multiplex, Fame Multiplex, Westside, More Megastore, Fame Vihar Multiplex, Cine Mall,
  • Other Interesting Places: Gandhi Nagar Gruh (Town Hall), Vadodara Central Library, ABS Tower Art Gallery, IPCL-Reliance Mandir Complex, Kirti Mandir