Surat, previously known as Suryapur, is a well-developed metropolis of the Indian state of Gujarat. It is also administrative capital of Surat district and one of the fastest growing cities of the world. The city proper is the third cleanest city in India.Surat is Gujarat's second largest city and India's 8th most populated city (in terms of Population in Municipal Corporation area of the City) with a population of 4.5 million. Surat ranks 4th fastest growing city in a global study of fastest developing cities conducted by The City Mayors Foundation, an international think tank on urban affairs. It is the fastest growing Indian city in terms of economic prosperity. The city registered an annualised fastest GDP growth rate of 11.5 per cent over the seven fiscal years between 2001 and 2008, according to data compiled by the economic research firm Indicus Analytics. UK-based charity, The Ecological Sequestration Trust (TEST), has selected Surat as one of the three cities in the world, to be developed as "global cities."
The city is located 306 km south of state capital Gandhinagar, and is situated on the left bank of the Tapti River (Tapi), the center being around 22 km (14 mi) from its mouth. A moat divides the older parts of the city, with its narrow streets and handsome houses, and the newer suburbs. The city is largely recognized for its textile and diamond businesses. It is also known as the diamond capital of the world and the textile capital/Manchester textile city of India, a distinction it took over from Ahmedabad. It is also known as the "Embroidery capital of India" with the highest number of embroidery machines than any other city.92% of the world's diamonds are cut and polished in Surat. Surat was the primary port of India during the Mughal period, a distinction it lost to Bombay during the late 17th century as the East India Company grew.