West Bengal is a state in the east of India. The state is the fourth largest in India in terms of population and it contributes the third largest amount to the Indian GDP. Despite recent advancement in terms of the economy, West Bengal is still one of the poor states in the country. The state is stricken with poor infrastructure, poor health care and political instability. Compared to other areas of a similar economy, West Bengal is the least industrialized and the most underdeveloped.
The economy of West Bengal is largely dependent on agriculture, with most citizens of the state being employed in this field in one way or another. Rice is the main food crop although the state does produce others including potatoes, wheat, barley, maize and pulses. Tea, tobacco and sugar cane are other important cash crops. Aside from agriculture there are around 10,000 factories in West Bengal. Calcutta is the main city for industry and there are a number of steel plants in the city. The state is most known for its tea plantations and is now a large center for tea production. The economy in West Bengal is continuing to grow and this is helped along by the number of IT companies now choosing to base their factories in Calcutta.
The state of West Bengal enjoys a cosmopolitan mindset. Old customs have entwined themselves with the new to produce an eclectic mix of new and old. Throughout Bengal, numerous types of music and dance are a fascinating part of the culture. Music comprises both religious and secular themes, as well as folk lore. Visitors to the state often find themselves mesmerized by the culture around them.
West Bengal is renowned worldwide for its appreciation and the enthusiasm that is put into celebrating festivals. The main festival in the state – Durga Puja, is the largest Hindu festival, and is celebrated by everyone! The festival continues for five days and during that time Bengalis trade gifts, wear spectacular dresses and feast on delicious sweets. Although it is a Hindu festival, most of the locals living in the state will join in with celebrations. Due to the multi religious population in the state a number of other festivals are also celebrated with grandeur including Christmas, Eid and Buddha Purnima