Goa is a small state located between Maharashtra and Karnataka in the western coast of India. It is mainly renowned as a tourist destination, but it has played an important role in contributing to the history of India. There was a time when Goa was considered to be a major trade center in India. This is possibly one of the biggest reasons for which it has attracted different seafarers, dynasties, traders, merchants, missionaries and even monks. However, right since the history of Goa, it has undergone continuous transformation, which in turn, has created impact on the socio-economic and cultural development of the state.
Part of Mauryan Empire:
It was in the 3rd century BC that Goa became a part of the Mauryan Empire, which was later ruled by the Satavahanas. It was also in 1312 that Goa fell into the hands of the Muslims, but after few years they were forced to leave the state. It was during the next hundred years that the harbours were the landing places of the Arabians with the horses for the Vijaynagar Empire. These rulers constantly tried to dominate the rich land of Goa, but they were completely unsuccessful, and after few years of rule, they were pushed out of the land.
Arrival Of The Portuguese:
Since Goa was blessed with larger numbers of rivers, seas and harbours, it was the ideal destination for the sea farers, the Portuguese. They arrived in 1510, and they wanted to control the spice route of the East. This is the reason why they established their dominance here. Initially, the control of these sea farers was limited only to Old Goa, but with the progression of time, in the middle of the 16th century, the influence of the Portuguese had spread to the other provinces, as well.
The Portuguese successfully dominated the state for a long period of time till the latter half of 18th century. The influence of the Marathas had spread throughout India, and at several different points, they successfully vanquished the Portuguese by the end of the late 18th century. It was in 1961, when the Indian Army marched into Goa, and brought an end to the Portuguese occupation from the sub-continent. However, even today, there are still some native Portuguese residing in different parts of Goa, especially Old Goa, and they largely reflect the rich cultural ethics in Goa.
The situation of Goa has largely changed today. It has been declared as the smallest state in India today with Panaji as its capital. It is also considered to be the most westernized state of India and the most attractive tourist destination attracting large numbers of tourists from different corners. It was after many years that Konkani was recognized as the local language of Goa, which also ranks among the top 22 regional languages of India. Apart from tourism, farming, fishing, mining of iron-ore also contributes to the rich per capital income of Goa today, which is also the main basis of the economy of Goa.