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India's 20 most promising cities

Last updated on: July 19, 2012 08:29 IST

India's 20 most promising cities

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India is both domestically and internationally attractive for business with its open environment, promising young talent and untapped resource and market potential, says a report by the Institute for Competitiveness.

Its booming cities are set to become major commercial hubs. It is generally perceived that cities that have secured lower scores are less competitive, not so prosperous and lagging behind in the growth race.

However all cities have their unique strengths and are part of the overall urban ecosystem in India, the report says.

While the most competitive cities are bustling metros, there are many more developing cities, all set to join the big league of economic powerhouses.

Take a look at India's 20 most promising cities with a great growth potential...

1. Vijayawada (Andhra Pradesh)
Score: 53.964

Vijayawada, the land of victory is the biggest city of the Krishna District and the third largest city in Andhra Pradesh, after Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam.

As the commercial capital of Andhra Pradesh, the city is rich in agriculture and is an industrial transportation hub.

Though Vijayawada leads among the developing cities, it is ranked 31st overall among the India's most competitive cities.

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Image: Different faces of Vijayawada.
Photographs: MyVijawada/Wikimedia Commons.

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2. Guwahati
Score:
53.961

The largest metropolitan area in north-eastern India and one of the fastest developing cities in India, it is often referred as 'gateway' of the North East Region.
Guwahati has moved 8 places upward and is now positioned at 32nd in the overall rankings.

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Image: Guwahati.
Photographs: Suman Bora/Wikimedia Commons.

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3. Raipur (Chhattisgarh)
Score: 53.849

Raipur is the capital city of Chhattisgarh. Raipur serves as a regional hub for trade and commerce for a variety of local agricultural and forest products.

Raipur is becoming an important regional commercial and industrial destination for coal, power, steel and aluminium industries. Raipur is among the richest cities and India's biggest iron market.

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Image: Raipur Railway Station.
Photographs: AshishJaiswalRaipur/Wikimedia Commons.

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4. Vishakhapatnam
Score: 53.741

The third-largest city on the east coast (after Chennai and Kolkata). Visakhapatnam is located 625 kilometres (388 mi) east of the state capital, Hyderabad.

The city is home to several state-owned heavy industries and a steel plant; it is one of India's largest seaports and has the country's oldest shipyard. Visakhapatnam has the only natural harbour on the east coast of India.

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Image: Vishakhapatnam.
Photographs: Nballa/Wikimedia Commons.

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5. Patna (Bihar)
Score: 53.580

Paṭna is the capital of Bihar and the most populous city in Bihar. On the basis of assumed average annual growth, Patna has been ranked as 21st fastest growing city in the world and 5th fastest growing city in India by City Mayors Foundation.

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Image: Patna.
Photographs: Piyush1919/Wikimedia Commons.

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6. Jabalpur  (Madhya Pradesh)
Score: 53.249

Jabalpur has a variety of industries largely based in mineral substances of economic value found in the district, although the ready-made garments industry is a substantial portion of production in Jabalpur.

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Image: Jabalpur.
Photographs: Swapnil David/Wikimedia Commons.

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7. Agra
Score: 53.157

Agra was the commercial hub of the Mughal empire, nearly five centuries ago. A tourist hotspot, with Taj Mahal and other historic monuments, it has a tourism industry as well.

Today, 40 per cent of the population depends largely on agriculture, and others on the leather and footwear business and iron foundries.

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Image: Taj Mahal, Agra.
Photographs: Courtesy, UP Tourism.
Tags: Agra , India

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8. Varanasi
Score: 53.039

Varanasi is regarded as a holy city. It is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and the oldest in India.

A tourist destination, Varanasi has several small cottage industries. The city is famous for Banarasi silk saris, carpets and handicrafts. 

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Image: Varanasi.
Photographs: Courtesy, UP Tourism.

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9. Meerut
Score: 52.975

It is the second largest city in the National Capital Region of India and 16th largest metropolitan area.

The city is one of the largest producers of sports goods, and the largest producer of musical instruments in India. The city is also an education hub in western Uttar Pradesh.

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Image: Meerut.
Photographs: Siddhartha Ghai/Wikimedia Commons.

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10. Pondicherry
Score: 52.905

Pondicherry is a Union Territory with one of the highest levels of quality of life in the country with moderate infrastructure.


Image: Pondicherry.
Photographs: Adyan Prabhakaran.

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11. Asansol
Score: 52.813

Asansol is a coal mining and industrial metropolis and one of the busiest commercial centres in India. It is the second largest city and urban agglomeration in West Bengal after Kolkata.

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Photographs: Wikimedia Commons.

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12. Dehradun
Score: 52.725

Besides being a tourist hotspot, Dehradun is known for its natural resources, publishing services and prestigious educational institutions. It has some of India's best boarding schools and training institutions.

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Image: Dehradun.

Tags: India , Dehradun

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13. Ranchi
Score: 52.575

Ranchi is the capital of Jharkhand. It accounts for 40 per cent of the mineral resources in India.

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Image: Ranchi.


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14. Allahabad
Score: 52.573

Allahabad city is one of the largest commercial centres in the state and also the second largest highest per capita income city with third highest GDP rate in the state followed by Kanpur.

It is also one of the most prominent industrial towns, with 58 large industrial units, and more than 3,000 small scale industries.

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Image: Allahabad.
Photographs: Courtesy, UP Tourism.
Tags: , GDP , Kanpur , India

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15. Shimla
Score: 52.295

A popular tourist destination, Shimla is often referred to as the 'Queen of Hills'. The city's development plan aims make Shimla an attractive health tourism spot.

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Image: Shimla.
Photographs: Wikimedia Commons.
Tags: Shimla , Hills , India

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16. Amritsar
Score: 52.181

Amritsar is one of the largest cities in Punjab. The main commercial activities include tourism, carpets and fabrics, farm produce, handicrafts, service trades, and light engineering.

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Image: Amritsar.

Tags: , Amritsar , India , Punjab

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17. Jammu
Score: 50.621

Jammu is a pilgrimage tourism destination in India. With better infrastructural facilities, Jammu has emerged as the main economic centre in the state.

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Image: passenger train travelling the Jammu-Udhampur rail line comes out of a tunnel on the outskirts of Jammu.
Photographs: Mukesh Gupta/Reuters.
Tags: Jammu , India

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18. Jamshedpur
Score: 50.475

Jamshedpur is the first planned industrial city of India, founded by the late Jamshedji Nusserwanji Tata. It is also known as steel city or Tata Nagar.

Jamshedpur is a major industrial centre of East India. It is the largest urban conglomeration and most populous city in Jharkhand.

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Image: Jamshedpur.
Photographs: Wikimedia Commons.

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19. Dhanbad
Score: 49.829

Known as the Coal Capital of India, Dhanbad is one of the fastest growing cities in India. Dhanbad is among the 53 cities of India with a population of more than one million.

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Image: Dhanbad.


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20. Srinagar
Score: 49.732

Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, is famous for its gardens, lakes and houseboats. It is also known for traditional Kashmiri handicrafts and dry fruits.



Image: A man guides donkeys through a mountainous road covered by snow on the Srinagar-Leh highway.
Photographs: Fayaz Kabli/Wikimedia Commons.

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