|Capital of Meghalaya|
A view of Shillong
|Nickname(s): Scotland of the East|
|District||East Khasi Hills|
|o Capital of Meghalaya||64.36 km2 (24.85 sq mi)|
|Elevation||1,495-1,965 m (4,908-6,449 ft)|
|o Capital of Meghalaya||143,229|
|o Density||234/km2 (610/sq mi)|
|o Official||Khasi (secondary English)|
|Time zone||UTC+5:30 (IST)|
|PIN||793 001 - 793 100|
Shillong (;Khasi: Shillong) is a hill station in the northeastern part of India and the capital of Meghalaya, which means "The Abode of Clouds" and is one of the smallest states in India. It is the headquarters of the East Khasi Hills district and is situated at an average altitude of 4,908 feet (1,496 m) above sea level, with the highest point being Shillong Peak at 6,449 feet (1,966 m). Shillong is the 330th most populous city in India with a population of 143,229 according to the 2011 census. It is said that the rolling hills around the town reminded the European settlers of Scotland. Hence, they would also refer to it as the "Scotland of the East".
Shillong has steadily grown in size since it was made the civil station of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills in 1864 by the British. In 1874, on the formation of Assam as the Chief Commissioner's Province, it was chosen as the headquarters of the new administration because of its convenient location between the Brahmaputra and Surma valleys and more so because the climate of Shillong was much cooler than tropical India. Shillong remained the capital of undivided Assam until the creation of the new state of Meghalaya on 21 January 1972, when Shillong became the capital of Meghalaya, and Assam moved its capital to Dispur in Guwahati.
Shillong was capital for composite Assam during the British regime and later till a separate State of Meghalaya was formed. David Scott, the British civil servant of the East India Company, was the Agent of the Governor-General North East Frontier. During the First Anglo-Burmese War the British authorities felt the need for a road to connect Sylhet and Assam. The route was to traverse across the Khasi and Jaintia Hills. David Scott overcame the difficulties his administration faced from the opposition of the Khasi Syiems - their chiefs and people. Impressed by the favourable cool climate of Khasi Hills, they negotiated with the Syiem of Sohra in 1829 for a sanatorium for the British. Thus began the consolidation of British interests in the Khasi-Jaintia Hills.
A serious uprising by the Khasis against foreign occupation of their land followed. It began early in 1829 and continued till January 1833. Eventually the Khasi confederate chiefs were no match against the military might of the British. David Scott negotiated for the surrender of the leader of the Khasi resistance, Tirot Sing Syiem, who was then taken to Dacca (present day Dhaka) for detention. After the resistance of the Khasis a political agent was posted in the hills, with its headquarters at Sohra, also known by the name Cherrapunjee. But the climatic condition and facilities of Sohra did not make the British happy, they then moved out to Shillong, which was then known as "Iewduh". The name "Shillong" was later adopted, as the location of the new town was below the Shillong Peak.
In 1874, a separate Chief Commissionership was formed with Shillong as the seat of administration. The new administration included Sylhet, now a part of Bangladesh. Also included in the Chief Commissionership were the Naga Hills (present day Nagaland), Lushai Hills (present day Mizoram) as well as Khasi, Jaintia and Garo Hills. Shillong was the capital of composite Assam till 1969 when the autonomous state of Meghalaya was formed. In January 1972 Meghalaya was made a full-fledged state.
The Shillong Municipal Board has a long history dating back to 1878, when a proclamation was issued constituting Shillong and its suburbs, including the villages of Mawkhar and Laban, into a station under the Bengal Municipal Act of 1876. Inclusion of the villages of Mawkhar (S.E. Mawkhar, Jaiaw and part of Jhalupara and Mawprem) and Laban (Lumparing, Madan laban, Kench's Trace and Rilbong) within the Municipality of Shillong was agreed to by Hain Manik Syiem of Mylliem under the agreement of 15 November 1878. But, there is no trace of Shillong in the British era maps dating back to 1878, up to 1900.
Shillong is at Shillong Plateau, the only major uplifted structure in the northern Indian shield. The city lies in the centre of the plateau and is surrounded by hills, three of which are revered in Khasi tradition: Lum Sohpetbneng, Lum Diengiei and Lum Shillong.. It lies on the
Location: Shillong, the capital city of Meghalaya is just 100 km (62 mi) from Guwahati which can be accessed by road along NH 40, a journey of about 2 hours 30 minutes through lush green hills and the magnificent Umiam lake in between.
Shillong has been selected as the 100th city to receive funding under the Centre's flagship "Smart Cities Mission" Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation AMRUT. In January 2016, 20 cities were announced under the Smart Cities Mission, followed by 13 cities in May 2016, 27 cities in September 2016, 30 cities in June 2017, and 9 cities in January this year. The total proposed investment in the finally selected 100 cities under the Smart Cities Mission would be Rs 2,05,018 crore. Under the scheme, each city will get Rs 500 crore from the Centre for implementing various projects.
|Climate chart (explanation)|
Weather conditions in Shillong are typically pleasant, pollution-free. In the summer the temperature varies from 23 °C (73 °F). In the winter the temperature varies from 4 °C (39 °F).
Under Köppen's climate classification the city features a subtropical highland climate (Cwb). Its summers are cool and very rainy, while its winters are cool and dry. Shillong is subject to vagaries of the monsoon. The monsoons arrive in June and it rains almost until the end of August. October-November and March-April are the best months to visit Shillong.
|Climate data for Shillong (1971-2000)|
|Record high °C (°F)||24.9
|Average high °C (°F)||14.6
|Average low °C (°F)||5.7
|Record low °C (°F)||-0.9
|Average rainfall mm (inches)||12.5
|Average rainy days||1.4||2.2||3.7||9.0||16.3||17.9||18.2||16.1||15.9||8.4||2.4||1.3||112.7|
|Source: India Meteorological Department (record high and low up to 2010)|
Although well connected by road, Shillong has neither rail connections nor a proper air connection. Umroi Airport located 30 kilometres (19 mi) from the city centre has only limited flights.
Shillong is well connected by roads with all major northeastern states. Two major National Highways pass through:
Private bus operators as well as state transport buses from other states ply to and from Shillong daily. Taxi services are also available to destination like Guwahati, Agartala, Dimapur, Aizawl and other North Eastern towns and cities.
The Shillong Bypass (pictured) is a two lane road which stretches across 47.06 kilometres (29.2 mi) connecting Umiam (NH-40) to Jorabad (NH-44) which then leads to other North-Eastern Indian states of Mizoram and Tripura. The project estimated to have cost around (US$31 million) was completed in a span of two years (2011-2013).
Shillong metropolitan region, which includes the towns of Laitumkhrah, Lawsohtun, Madanrting, Mawlai, Mawpat, Nongkseh, Nongmynsong, Nongthymmai, Pynthorumkhrah, Shillong Cantonment, Umlyngka and Umpling, had a population of 354,759, 12% of the which being under 6 years of age. The literacy rate in the metro region was 91%.
Khasis make up the majority of the population according to 2011 census. All the other North East tribes such as Nagas, Garos, Pnars, Hajong people, Kukis, Manipuris, Lalungs, Karbis and Mizos etc. are represented here as well as significant numbers of Assamese, Bengalis, and a bit of Nepalis, Biharis, Marwaris, Punjabis and People from other Indian states making it a fairly cosmopolitan city.
Nearly about 85% Khasi people are Christians. In Shillong Christmas is celebrated with great favour with enthusiasm and it is the biggest festival of the city. Presbyterianism and other denominations of Protestants and Roman Catholics make up the Christian population. A large proportion of Khasi people that is 10% population still follow the original Khasi religion: Niam Khasi and Niamtre and 3% Khasi people follow Hinduism and 2% khasi people follow Islam.
Tourist sites in and around the city include:
Shillong is the only capital city in Northeast India to produce two clubs that participate in the I-League, namely Royal Wahingdoh FC and Shillong Lajong FC. Both play at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium. Royal Wahingdoh FC was adjudged 2nd runners-up in the 2014-15 season of I-League.
Shillong Golf Course is one of the oldest golf course of the country and is surrounded by pine and rhododendron trees.
Binningstar Lyngkhoi from Shillong is a national marathon runner and represented India in the last 2010 Commonwealth Games. He is the fastest marathoner in India with a timing of 2:18 hours.
|Shillong Lajong FC||Football||I-League||Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Shillong|
|Royal Wahingdoh FC||Football||I-League||Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Shillong|
|Rangdajied United F.C.||Football||I-League||Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Shillong|
Shillong is fast emerging as an education hub for the entire northeastern region. Important educational institutes that have been established in and around the city include:
Local media in Shillong is strong. There are a number of theatres, newspapers, magazines, local radio and television stations. Shillong is also often called as "India's Rock Capital" due to its inhabitants' great passion for music.
Cinemas in Shillong include Bijou Cinema Hall, Payal Cinema, Gold Cinema and Anjalee Cinema Hall (also called Galleria Anjalee Cinema).
Newspapers are published for Shillong both in Khasi and English. Prominent English dailies published here include Shillong Times, Meghalaya Guardian, Highland Post, Meghalaya Times and The Sentinel. Khasi dailies like U Mawphor, U Nongsain Hima among others are published here. Weekly newspaper are "Salonsar" and "Dongmusa". There are Magazines like "Iing Khristan" (celebrated 100 years of publication), "Pateng Mynta" in Khasi and "Youth Today" and "Eastern Panorama" in English.
The radio industry has expanded with a number of private and government-owned FM channels being introduced. State-owned Doordarshan transmits terrestrial television channels. Apart from these few weekly news channels like PCN, Ri Khasi Channel, Batesi and T7 are broadcast weekly on the local cable networks.
Fixed telephones lines are available. Internet services are available both wired and wireless broadband. It is also well covered in mobile networks with all major cellular providers like Airtel, Aircel, Vodafone, IDEA, BSNL, Reliance, Jio are available here.
HQ Eastern Air Command (HQ, EAC) was shifted to Shillong on 10 Jun 63 from Kolkata and housed in the old buildings located at Nonglyer village at Upper Shillong, some 10 km from (Lower) Shillong, but at a greater altitude of around 6,000 feet AMSL. Initially a British military base, it was taken over by No. 58 Gorkha Regiment of the Indian Army post Independence in 1947. The Regiment was redeployed after the Sino-Indian War of 1962, making way for the IAF to step in. Only helicopters can operate from HQ, EAC, using a 12.7 hectare (31.3 acre) helipad.
EAC controls air operations in the eastern sector which include West Bengal, Assam, Mizoram and the other eastern states bordering Bangladesh, Burma and Tibet. EAC comprises permanent airbases at Chabua, Gauhati, Bagdogra, Barrackpore, Hashimara, Jorhat, Kalaikunda and Tezpur with forward airbases at Agartala, Culcutta, Panagarh and Shillong.
Historic neighbourhoods of Shillong include Mawkhar, Jaiaw, Riatsamthiah, Umsohsun, Wahingdoh,Police Bazar, Mawlai, Laitumkhrah, Laban, Malki, Nongthymmai and Polo.
People who have been associated with Shillong include:
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