Dharamshala (also spelled Dharamsala) (pronounced [d̪haramsala] or [d̪haramshalaː]) is the second winter capital of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh and a municipal corporation in Kangra district. It also serves as the district headquarters. It was formerly known as Bhagsu. The Dalai Lama’s residence and the headquarters of Central Tibetan Administration (the Tibetan government in exile) are in Dharamshala. Dharamshala is 18 kilometers from Kangra.
Dharamshala has been selected as one of the hundred Indian cities to be developed as a smart city under PM Narendra Modi’s flagship Smart Cities Mission.
On 19 January 2017, Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh declared Dharamshala as the second capital of Himachal Pradesh state, making Himachal Pradesh the third state of India with two capitals after Jammu and Kashmir and Maharashtra.
Dharamsala is famed as the holy residence of the Dalai Lama and houses the Tibetan monk in exile. The city is distinctively separated as upper and lower divisions with different altitudes. The lower division is the Dharamsala town itself whereas the upper division is popularly known as Mcleodganj.