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Maharashtra is a large, populous and economically important state. The Lands of Caves, Forts and Temples Mumbai is the capital of the Maharashtra State, India's fourth largest State, but it does not reflect the spirit of Maharashtra. The city is Maharashtra's avaricious heart, its soul lies in the interior of the State in cites like Pune, Kolhapur and Nagpur. Mumbai contains a cross section of the people of India it is like a mini India. If you walk in Mumbai, you will hear a babble of languages you cannot understand, but all Mumbities communicate in their Mumbai Hindi.From Mumbai most travellers head south to the beaches of Goa, south-east to Pune and its famous ashram, or north-east to the World Heritage-listed cave temples of Ajanta & Ellora.
History: Mughal power dominated much of central and southern India in the 16th century until the Deccan became the epicentre of the Maratha empire in the 17th century. With a relatively small army, Shivaji established a base at Pune and later Raigad. From the early 18th century the the Maratha empire was controlled by the Peshwas who retained power until they upset the British in 1817.
Maratha also has a strong links with Gandhi & India's Independence. Gandhi was interned by british in Pune for two years after the Quit India declaration, and his ashram is at Sevagram in the state's far east. After Independence, western Maharashtra and Gujarat were joined to form Bombay state. Today's state, with Mumbai as capital, was formed in 1960 when the Marathi and Gujrati-speaking areas were again separated.