Bengaluru (Bangalore), India: Background information when reading Miss New India

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Miss New India

A Novel

By Bharati Mukherjee

Miss New India
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  • Hardcover: May 2011,
    336 pages.
    Paperback: Jun 2012,
    336 pages.

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Beyond the Book:
Bengaluru (Bangalore), India

Situated on the Deccan Plateau in the south-eastern Indian state of Karnataka (aka Mysore), of which it is the capital, Bengaluru sits approximately 940 meters above sea level, and is one of India's largest and fastest growing cities.

Karnataka Map Legend suggests that Bengaluru was named after King Veera Ballala of the Vijayanagara Kingdom (14th century), who, lost on his travels, was given a meal of beans by a charitable elderly woman. He named the town "bende kaalu ooru" (town of boiled beans), which then became known as Bengaluru. However, the word "BengaLooru" is documented as having been used long before King Veera Ballala's time and can be found on an inscription on a 9th century temple in the village of Begur, rendering the legend rather unlikely.

Modern Bengaluru originated as a mud fort built by Kempe Gowda, a feudal lord, in 1537 when he decided to create a capital city over which he could rule and work to preserve Hindu Dharma in India. Over the centuries, the city has been ...

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