Hyderabad, The Best City To Live In India
Hyderabad, the city of pearls as it is called, is the capital of the Indian state of Telangana and de jure capital of Andhra Pradesh. Hyderabad is located on the Musi River in the heart of the Telangana Plateau, a major upland region of the Deccan (peninsular India).
The recently released Mercer’s Quality of Living Ranking 2018 ranks Hyderabad as the best city in India for the fourth time in a row. The Mercer Quality of living rankings of cities is evaluated on 39 factors including political, economic, environmental, personal safety, health, education, transportation and other public service factors.
For Hyderabad to be the best city of the world’s largest democracy shows in itself how big of an achievement it is for the city and its people.
Let’s see briefly, what makes Hyderabad the best city to live in India-
Hyderabad was established in 1591 by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, founder of the Qutb Shahi dynasty. Hyderabad remained under the rule of the Qutb Shahi dynasty for nearly a century before the Mughals captured the region. In 1714 Farrukhsiyar, the Mughal emperor, appointed Asif Jah I to be Viceroy of the Deccan, with the title Nizam-ul-Mulk (Administrator of the Dominion). With the weakening of Mughal Empire due to the invasion of East India Company many provinces declared Independence from the Mughal administration, Hyderabad was one of them. In 1724, Mughal viceroy Asif Jah I declared his sovereignty and created his own dynasty, known as the Nizams of Hyderabad. The Nizam’s dominions became a princely state during the British Raj, and remained so for 150 years, with the city serving as its capital. The city continued as the capital of Hyderabad State after it was brought into the Indian Union in 1948, and became the capital of Andhra Pradesh after the States Reorganisation Act, 1956. Hyderabad was capital of Andhra Pradesh till 2014.
In 2014, the newly formed state of Telangana split from Andhra Pradesh and the city became the joint capital of the two states, a provisional arrangement scheduled to end by 2025.
Why Is It The Best City To Live In India?
Hyderabad is blessed with a distinctive landscape – being a part of the Deccan plateau it is situated at an average height of 536 m above the sea level. It sports spectacular rock formations which are about 2,500 million years old; amongst the oldest and hardest rocks in the world. Hilly regions around and in the city are under demolition for urbanization.
Hyderabad is less prone to natural disasters. The only frequent calamity it faces is monsoon floods in low lying areas of Hyderabad which do not have proper drainage channels. Hyderabad falls in the seismic zone-II and is seismically least exposed to earthquakes.
The original city of Hyderabad was founded on the banks of river Musi and has grown over the centuries on both banks of the river. Hussain Sagar, a man-made lake, separates the twin-cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad. The centre of the city has shifted geographically with the urbanization and construction of government buildings in both twin-cities. The rapid growth of Hyderabad has resulted in a large and populous metropolis.
Another major factor which makes Hyderabad a city worth living in is its climate. The climate is pleasant throughout the year and never sees extremes of any season.
Hyderabad has a unique blend of a tropical wet and dry climate that borders on a hot semi-arid climate; the climate is fairly warm throughout the year. The climate of Hyderabad if seen season wise is, in summer i.e. in months of April, May and June the days are scorching hot, the temperature may reach 42 °C with fierce heat waves and occasional rainfalls; the nights are cool and pleasant with pleasing breeze flowing, most people sleep on the terrace of their house counting stars. The months from June to November bring to Hyderabad the downpour from the clouds; the monsoon rainfall brings relief to the city, which experienced a hot summer in the fore season. Though the average precipitation level has reduced in the recent years and in sometimes rainfall leads to floods in some low lying areas of Hyderabad, overall the rainfall in Hyderabad is satisfactory. The winter ranges from December to February, the extreme low that it gets in Hyderabad is 12 °C; the weather is chilly only in the early mornings and sometimes in the nights but the rest of the day is very pleasant throughout the season. In winters you don’t need to wear warm clothes until you’re going out exposed to the surroundings or when travelling on a bike in the nights. The months of February and March brings the season of spring, which is the most pleasant time of the year in Hyderabad, in this season you see many people waking early and hitting the roads to enjoy pleasant morning walks.
Hyderabad like any other city of India is an amalgamation of people from all over the country and also people outside the country. It is a major cosmopolitan of India. What makes Hyderabad different from other cosmopolitans of India are its people. The native people of Hyderabad, “Hyderabadi” as people of Hyderabad describe themselves, from the times of Nizams have welcomed people of different cultures; in recent times with the growing IT sector people from all over India have made Hyderabad their home, and they have been widely welcomed by the Hyderabadi people. It’s very rare to hear any racist and linguistic discriminatory and bigoted activity against any Indians or foreigners in Hyderabad, unlike what we hear about from other metropolitan cities of India. Hyderabad boasts of a city with people from North, North-East, Central, East, West and South regions of India i.e. the whole of India. It also accommodates people from other various regions of the world i.e. North America, Europe, East Asia, South Asia, South-East Asia, Central Asia, West Asia, Middle East Asia, Africa and Australia. The people of Hyderabad are humble and friendly, in a sense, they call even a stranger as “Yaaron”. The new people though insecure and stereotypical at first are soon made comfortable by the people of Hyderabad.
Language And Religion
The major languages spoken in Hyderabad are Telugu, Urdu and Deccan Hindi or Urdu which is also referred to as “Hyderabadi or Dakhani (Deccan) “; other languages which are spoken by a minority of people are Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Marwari, Odiya, Punjabi, Tamil, and Awadhi.
The unique dialect of Dakhani is very amusing to listen and talk; it is the mother tongue of most Hyderabadi Muslims, a unique community who owe much of their history, language, cuisine, and culture to Hyderabad, and the various dynasties who previously ruled.
Religion-wise, Hindus are in the majority; Muslims form a very large minority, and are present throughout the city and predominate in and around the Old City. There are also Christian, Sikh, Jain, Buddhists and Parsi communities spread throughout the city. In Hyderabad dwell many iconic temples, mosques, churches, Gurudwaras, and Dargahs with varied history and heritage. Hyderabad may have witnessed few communal disturbances but ultimately it stands as a symbol of unity between all the religious groups and is a very good example of unity in diversity.
Housing & Infrastructure
With the advent of IT sector and a boom in real estate, Hyderabad’s property market has grown many times from the previous decade. The property market of Hyderabad is the most affordable in India, compared to other metropolitan cities. Rental prices are again way cheaper; here you can find a decent 2BHK house at ₹10–15k/month even in the most demanded area. Those who are aware of the city can easily rent a place near their office at affordable prices. Many housing boards and private colonies are set up in Hyderabad where people can live peacefully. Even the Armed Forces of India and various Central Organisations of India have colonies here, which allow the constantly transferring soldiers and central government employees to dwell in Hyderabad easily.
The connectivity of the city is to be admired; from the narrow lanes of the old city which are connected intricately to the big 8 lanes outer ring road and inner ring road which connect the city conveniently portray a great transport path. Hyderabad has many flyovers which reduce traffic congestion greatly.
Hyderabad also houses two reservoirs; they are Osman Sagar and Himayath Sagar which were built after the floods of 1908 on Musi River in 1927 to store water from Musi River by the Nizams of Hyderabad. These reservoirs are the source of water to the whole city of Hyderabad.
The intra-railway system of Hyderabad is one of the biggest among other cities in India. The railway board was first set up in 1880 by the British Raj which laid the foundation of inter and intra-railway connectivity. The recently inaugurated metro railway project boasts of heavy infrastructure throughout the city.
Other infrastructures in Hyderabad are cricket and other sports stadiums, various parks, government and privately owned hotels, corporate buildings, hospitals etc.
Education of children plays a major deciding factor when people shift from one place to another. When it comes to Hyderabad people can just take a sigh of relief as the education system in Hyderabad boasts of International, National, and State board schools, the parents can choose from any of them, with respect to their affordability.
The city is famous for all the coaching institutions for various national and local exams in various fields. It has become a coaching hub of South India.
Hyderabad boasts of many famous general, technical, medical and subjective universities such as Osmania University, University of Hyderabad (UoH), Maulana Azad National Urdu University, JNTU, Indian School Business (ISB), IIIT, IIT, Osmania medical college, PJTSAU, NALSAR and various other colleges from where many eminent personalities have graduated.
Health and hygiene are a basic but very important aspect of living. When dwelling in a place it is necessary to figure out the health centres of that city. Healthcare in Hyderabad is good and satisfactory. There are several good hospitals which provide affordable healthcare. Many, government-run Public health centres are spread throughout the city; the state government has linked its health service program with all major hospitals in the city thus affordability is no issue for poor to get good treatment. The Arogyasri scheme lets the poor to take health services from many hospitals. The state government runs a forceful ambulance service in collaboration with a corporate house that serves the city very well. Few of the government-run hospitals are Osmania General Hospital, Gandhi Hospital, NIMS etc.
The entire city of Hyderabad is connected by roadways and railways both inter-city and intra-city.
The state-run RTC bus transport in the city is a robust service, thousands of buses ply on the roads from early morning till late night; you can reach any point in the city through these buses. Few privately owned buses also run in few routes. There are several categories of buses too, catering to the comfort and affordability of commuters. Many govt. and private inter-city buses run from Hyderabad to different parts of the country.
The railway system of Hyderabad is a major railway system and is also headquarters for South Central Railways. The major railway stations of Hyderabad are Secunderabad, Nampally (Hyderabad) and Kacheguda, which connect Hyderabad to rest of the country. These stations are technologically and digitally advancing, you can see escalators and digital ticket counters in these stations. The local railway service MMTS railway system has been in the city for a while now and transports a large number of people on a daily basis. Lakhs of people use the MMTS as it touches all ends of the city- from IT hub of Hyderabad to the old city. The recently inaugurated metro project is a young project with huge potential connecting the city entirely, and its prospects are to be left for the future.
Rajiv Gandhi International Airport is an international airport that serves Hyderabad, it is located in Shamshabad. The airport is operated by GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd, a public-private venture. The airport connects to all parts of India and most parts of the world with several daily flights and many weekly international flights.
Like any other city, this city also has thousands of auto-rickshaws for local travel; many cab services which have grown in demand cater to a large number of people of the city.
In the medieval and modern times, Hyderabad was a hub of pearls and diamonds, hence the name “City of Pearls”. In contemporary times also Hyderabad boasts of being a large trade centre with various small-scale businesses to large-scale corporate level businesses. Hyderabad is a hub of Information Technology, Multinational companies, Pharmaceutical companies and other various manufacturing industries which employ lakhs of people from the entire country.
Hyderabad and Secunderabad house several defence establishments and research organisations. The countries defence research organisation DRDO has a big research establishment in the city. There are a few Army and Air-Force institutes like CDM, apart from several Army cantonments. It houses various subjective government and private research institutes as well. BHEL, ECIL are some PSUs which have production units in Hyderabad.
Recently the Telangana govt. has started India’s biggest skill incubator called T-Hub. T-Hub is a unique public/private partnership between the government of Telangana, 3 of India’s premier academic institutes (IIIT-H, ISB & NALSAR) and key private sector leaders. It stands at the intersection of the start-up, academic, corporate, research and government sectors. Hyderabad is next only to Bangalore and NCR in terms of start-ups and T-Hub provides them with all the help necessary.
The retail sector in Hyderabad is ever growing with many supermarket chains, departmental stores, and several speciality stores all across the city. The consumption of the retail services is directly proportional and equal to supply. This shows Hyderabad offers a plethora of job opportunities to the country which definitely a factor to be considered for quality living.
The civic administration of Hyderabad is controlled by GHMC and SCB. SCB or Secunderabad Cantonment Board takes care of the defence areas of Secunderabad (twin city of Hyderabad) and surroundings, while GHMC (Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation) is responsible for the rest of the city. GHMC is quite agile in their job. The resolution of complaints regarding sanitation, water, electricity, drainage, sewage, garbage and other civic matters is taken care of in a fast manner. They are active on social media and resolve complaints on it. Many smartphone applications have been released by the Telangana govt. and GHMC for the people to connect with them in case of complaints, payments, and queries. GHMC also runs affordable eateries, for weaker section of the society. The workforce is huge and gives employment to thousands of people.
The police of Hyderabad has grown very dynamic in recent years. The GHMC and Hyderabad police have installed CCTV cameras at almost all traffic signals and major streets. The Hyderabad and Cyberbad police are active 24*7; the people can keep in touch with them through social media and various apps. Special care is taken for women safety with SHE teams of police, who are specially trained and deployed to handle crime against women. The Police can also be contacted through WhatsApp number through which they can reach you faster and help you immediately. Other than self-harm, drug-trade, and accidents, crimes like murder, rapes, and kidnapping are quite less reported in Hyderabad. The government and people of Hyderabad complement each other and keep the city safe.
These administrative factors play a very major role in the Quality living of the citizens of Hyderabad.
Food is definitely the selling point of Hyderabad. Every street has a food point. The love for food is so much that it has evolved into a culture. The local cuisines comprise of the famous Biryani, Tandoori items, Kebabs, different types of naans and many more exquisite mouth-watering dishes. There is no area in Hyderabad where Biryani is not sold. While you have local cuisines, there are several joints offering various regional foods like Bengali, Marathi, Rajasthani and Punjabi etc. There are many restaurants which sell various international cuisines from Italian to Chinese and to Arabian. There are also major food chains in Hyderabad, which are always full at any given time.
The food is very much affordable, a one-time meal can be found under ₹100, even in the expensive IT hub. Fine dining for two won’t cost more than ₹1000–1500. In recent years, Middle Eastern and Arabian food like shawarma, haleem, mandi etc. have found a place in hearts of the Hyderabadi people. Street food from samosa to dosa is also available at affordable prices and consumed with craze. Tea shops offer you Irani chai, which is yet another identity of the city. Biryani and tea joints in the older part of the city are open till late night so one can find food at any time. There are also many govt. and GHMC run canteens where the food is very cheap, one can have stomach full food with just 5Rs. You can find all the raw food in Hyderabad at various bazaars and markets at very reasonable prices from fruits to vegetables, cereals to meat etc. In Hyderabad, everyone can find food at any price and anytime, no one is hungry in Hyderabad.
When the topic is about culture, then shopping is definitely a cultural aspect of Hyderabad. People from all over the world come to Hyderabad only to shop in Charminar. If you want to shop then these places are worth every paisa; Charminar- Shah Ali Banda to Patherghatti, Laad Bazar shops that sell excellent perfumes, jewellery, bangles and garments, Perfume Market for ittar, Abids Street for clothing, books and electronics, Mozzam Jahi Market for fruits, flowers, ittar, sweets and ice creams, Koti Sultan Bazar for women garments, electronic goods and various things, Antique Market, Begum Bazar, Pot Market and many more. In recent decades many shopping malls have been opened in Hyderabad, these malls attract the local people a lot. Shopping is definitely a cultural and economic factor that scores in the quality of living of the people of Hyderabad.
Tourism And Recreation
Hyderabad is a land of rich heritage sites. Many monuments and palaces under the various ruling dynasties have been built in Hyderabad. Monuments such as Mecca Masjid, Charminar, Golconda Fort, Qutb Shahi Tombs, Paigah Tombs and Palaces such as Falaknuma Palace, Chowmohalla Palace, Asman Garh Palace, Taramati Baradari, Purani Haveli, King Koti Palace, and Bella Vista elevate the cultural heritage of Hyderabad. Many religious centres such as Mecca Masjid, Birla Mandir, Shahi Masjid, Hebron House of Worship, Ananda Buddha Vihara, Sanghi temple proliferates the religious and traditional heritage of Hyderabad. To view the history of Hyderabad one can just visit Salar Jung museum which boasts of a one-man collection of thousands of antiques and relics.
Many talent centres which encourage talents of people are present in Hyderabad; sports, acting, singing, art, dancing, comedy etc. are encouraged in various talent centres in Hyderabad. Many people from all over the country come to Hyderabad to be part of the talent industry.
Hyderabad also houses recreational centres such as theme parks, water parks, biological parks, gaming centres, and movie, music and drama theatres. Ramoji film city is the world’s largest integrated film studio cum theme park.
Medical tourism, people from around the world come to Hyderabad to treat themselves to various diseases, as Hyderabad provides decent medical treatment at affordable price.
All these factors have helped Hyderabad to become the best city in India.
Few Points To Improve Our Beloved Hyderabad:
* People should contribute to curbing the rising air pollution levels in Hyderabad. Also water wastage, excessive draining of groundwater needs to be stopped.
* Overcrowding and saturation of the population should be controlled.
* The ever-increasing traffic congestion though very hard to reduce should be worked on and people should play their part to regulate it.
* The people in the ever-growing slums should be given proper shelters, and the slums should be displaced permanently.
* Overzealous show of religious and political processions should be controlled. Love your religion and respect other religions in a similar way.
* Damaged and unattended roads lead to the formation of potholes in monsoon which results in many accidents. These can be brought to the notice of GHMC and should be dealt with properly.
“No place is perfect; it can only be made in its best condition by its people. The people are the ones who either increase or decrease the value of a place. They are the life of a city. So Hyderabadis lets improve our ranking and try to be one of the best cities in the World not just in India.”
Article khatam hogaya Yaaron.