India's Top 10 States with the Lowest Population Density

India is composed of 29 states and 7 Union territories, and it is the second most populous country in the world with an estimated population of around 1.2 billion according to the 2011 census. India accounts for 17.5% of the world's total population and is blessed with a pleasant climate, rich natural resources, and abundant minerals. 

India's Top 10 States with the Lowest Population Density

As the most religious country, India attracts a large number of tourists to visit its beautiful historical monuments, museums, and sacred temples. The Thar Desert and Deccan Plateau are among the densely populated regions. India gained independence in 1947, and since then, a census has been conducted every ten years, with the latest being in 2011.

The Ministry of Home Affairs, Census Commissioner, and Registrar General are responsible for conducting the census in India. The 15th Indian Census was conducted in 2011, consisting of two phases: Population Enumeration and House Listing. 

The House Listing phase collected information about the total number of buildings, while the Population Enumeration phase began on February 9, 2011. According to the report released in March 2011, the population of India had grown by 17.645% in the decade since the last census. The theme for the 2011 census was "Our Census, Our Future." Based on the 2011 census, we have compiled a list of the top 10 states with the lowest population density.

List of Lowest Populated States in India

10. Madhya Pradesh

Madhya Pradesh is the second-largest state in India and boasts rich natural resources and favorable climate conditions. The state is also known for its tourist attractions, including Bandhavgarh wildlife, Khajuraho temple, and Quaint hills. Khajuraho temple is one of the UNESCO heritage sites in India. Madhya Pradesh has a population density of 303, making it the 10th state in India with the lowest population density. According to the 2011 census, the state has a population of 72,597,565, a tremendous growth rate from 2001 to 2011. The estimated sex ratio is 947, and the state's area is 308,245 km. Arunachal Pradesh has the lowest population density, and the Union Territory with the highest population density is Andaman & Nicobar Island.

9. Rajasthan

Rajasthan is known for being a hot desert area, and it is the 9th state on this list. It is also one of the richest states in India with a GDP of 5.7 lakh crore in 2018. The state has the largest desert in the country and is renowned for its forts, palaces, and kingdoms that are the memory of northern India's rulers. Rajasthan's population rate is over 68,621,92, and it had a decade of growth of about 20.3% from 2001 to 2011. The estimated sex ratio was 926 in 2011, and the entire area is about 342,239 square kilometers.

8. Chhattisgarh

Chhattisgarh is a forested state in central India and the 8th state on this list. The state has varieties of traditional temples, historic monuments, and waterfalls, making it the most attractive tourist destination. 24 million people speak the official language Chattisgarhi, a kind of Eastern Hindi Language that blends vocabulary from Dravidian and linguistic skills from Munda language. The state has a population density of 991, and the population was around 25,540,196 as per the 2011 census. There was a rise in the decade growth of 22.6% from 2001 to 2011. The estimated sex ratio is 926.

7. Meghalaya

Meghalaya, which means "abode of clouds" in Sanskrit, covers an area of approximately 22,429 square kilometers, with Cherrapunji receiving heavy rainfall. The state was formed in 1972, and Shillong is the largest city where different languages are spoken, including Garo, Biate, Hajong, Bengali, Khasi, and English. Some of the best places to visit in Meghalaya are Laitlum Canyon, Lalong Park, Don Bosco Centre, Double Decker, Living Root Bridge, and more. Meghalaya ranks 7th in India in terms of population density, with a density of 132.

6. Himachal Pradesh

Himachal Pradesh, a cold state with numerous tourist destinations, ranks 6th on this list. The state shares a border with Haryana and Punjab and is geographically located in the western Himalayas. The state was formed in 1971, and the official language is Hindi, with a literacy rate of 83.78%. As per the 2011 census, the decade growth rate has increased by about 12.8% from 2001 to 2011. The state covers an area of 55,673 square kilometers with a sex ratio of 974.

5. Manipur

Manipur ranks fifth on the list of the top 10 Indian states with the least population density, with a population rate of 0.22%. It is situated in North India and is bounded by Mizoram to the south, Burma to the east, and Nagaland to the north. The majority groups in the state include Loi, Kuki, Naga, and Yaithibi. Some of the best tourist attractions of Manipur are Ema Keithal, Loktat Lake, Sirohi National Park, Setka Archaeological Museum, Manipur Zoological Garden, and much more. Manipur has 16 districts and came into existence in 1972. The literacy rate is approximately 79.85%.

4. Nagaland

Nagaland stands at the fourth spot on this list with a population density of 119. It has a population percentage of 0.16%, with a sex ratio of 931, as per the 2011 census. Located in the Northeast, it shares borders with Myanmar to the east, Manipur to the south, Assam to the west, and Arunachal Pradesh to the north. The state was formed in 1963 and has top tourist attractions such as State Museum, War Cemetery, Rajbari Park, WWll Museum, and Rendikala Sunbong Museum.

3. Sikkim

Sikkim is the third least densely populated state in India. Located in North India, it shares borders with Nepal, Bhutan, and West Bengal. Sikkim is the second-smallest state in India and is well-known for its rich natural resources and biodiversity, including a tropical and subtropical climate. Interestingly, 35% of Sikkim is covered by the Khangchendzonga National Park. English is the official language, and Bhutia, Nepali, Manager, Sherpa, Tamang, Newari, Mukhia, Lepcha, and Gurung are some of the major spoken languages. The population rate of Sikkim is 607,688 as per the 2011 census.

2. Jammu and Kashmir

Jammu and Kashmir, located in the Himalaya Mountains, is the second least densely populated state in India. With an area of 222,236 square kilometers, it shares borders with Punjab and Himachal Pradesh to the North. The state separates India from Pakistan's territories Gilgit Baltistan and Azad Kashmir. It has 22 districts, with Srinagar as the largest city. Jammu and Kashmir boast numerous sacred religious sites, museums, and historic sites. The state has a pleasing atmosphere, with an endless variety of subtropical climates and rich flora and fauna.

1. Mizoram

Mizoram, one of the 7 sisters of North India, tops the list of 10 Indian states with the least population density. With an area of approximately 21,081 square kilometers, it shares borders with Myanmar, Bangladesh, Assam, Manipur, and Tripura. Palak Lake, located in the Saiha district, is the largest lake in the state. Mizo is the regional language spoken in the state. Aizawl is the capital city, and there are 8 districts in the state. Some popular rivers that flow through Mizoram are Tuits, Twlang, Tuirial, and Chimtuipi.

The previous section outlined the top 10 Indian states with the lowest population density. Now, let us delve into the causes of overpopulation in India. The period from 1901 to 1921 is known as the period of stationary growth of population in India, with a negative growth rate recorded between 1911 and 1921. The primary reasons for overpopulation were high birth and death rates. In recent times, the birth rate has been higher than the death rate, and other factors such as inadequate medical services, illiteracy, and unemployment have contributed to this problem.

While there was steady population growth achieved in 1921 with improvements in health, medical systems, transport, communication, etc., the birth rate remained high during that period. From 1951 to 1981, India experienced a population explosion due to technological advancements and better living conditions. However, the birth rate remained high compared to the previous phase. Since 1981, the growth rate has started to slow down, but early marriage and illiteracy have increased, contributing to a birth rate slightly higher than the death rate. As a result, India is currently the second most populous country after China.

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