Meghalaya mā˝gəlā´yə [key], state (2001 provisional pop. 2,306,069), c.8,700 sq mi (22,530 sq km), NE India, bordered on the south by Bangladesh. The capital is Shillong . Meghalaya is in the Garo, Khasi, and Jaintia hills, at an elevation of 4,000–6,000 ft (1,220–1,830 m). The inhabitants are Khasi, Synteng, and Pner tribespeople, who speak a Mon-Khmer language. Christian missionaries have had considerable influence among Meghalaya's inhabitants; c.70% are Christian. Meghalaya was formerly part of Assam state; it became a separate state in 1972. It is governed by a chief minister and cabinet responsible to an elected unicameral legislature and by a governor appointed by the president of India. Meghalaya has suffered from sporadic violence among indigenous hill peoples and between the hill peoples and illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.
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