A few years ago on my first visit to Nagpur, my city guide took me to what looked like an ordinary roundabout, the side walls collapsing and the place overgrown with weeds and all that the crows of the city left uneaten. I asked my guide, “What did I do to deserve this ‘tour’ as my first experience in Nagpur?” He laughed and encouraged me to take a few more steps. At that time, I really wasn’t having fun.
The second ridiculous thing my guide pointed out was at the base of the pillar. For me at that time it was just random information that Hyderabad was 318 miles away. What was I going to do with this information?
Then I looked some more and found more places listed with miles written against them, and then curiosity hit me. As a collector of all things strange, I own hundreds of photos of milestones and road signs from 25 Indian states and three countries. But I digress. So, it turns out that I was standing at the very geographical center of undivided India. That must have been a pretty cool thing to know back in the pre-partition days!
The Zero Mile Stone was constructed during the Great Trigonometric Survey of India in 1907 at Nagpur. The project, essentially, was to demarcate British territories in India. This was the project under which our great mountains were also measured. Basically, the whole subcontinent has been mapped. And we use this knowledge to this day. How about this for a cool travel quiz?
The sandstone pillar became known as the Zero Mile Stone. And right next to it is another small structure that represents the GTS Standard Bench Mark. The marker is definitely an important piece of history, right in front of us. Unfortunately, he definitely seemed to have seen better days.
Another anecdote: After the partition, the village of Karaundi in Madhya Pradesh is the geographical center of India. Not Nagpur. Nevertheless, the historical landmark – the Zero Mile – is an integral part of Nagpur’s history, and we are not complaining about it.
- What is the actual geographic center of India?
Before partition it was Nagpur, but after partition the geographical center is Karaundi village in Madhya Pradesh. There is a structure in Karaundi village that marks this.
- Why is Nagpur the most famous?
Nagpur is known for its oranges and is also called the orange city. The city is also known as the tiger capital of India as the city is geographically connected with numerous tiger reserves.
- Which city is the winter capital of Mumbai?
Nagpur is the winter capital of Mumbai.