City (pop., 2001: 2,433,835), southeastern Gujarat state, west-central India. It is near the mouth of the Tapti River and the Gulf of Khambhat (Cambay). A major seaport from the 16th century, it was conquered by the Mughals in 1573 and was twice sacked by the Marathas in the 17th century. It became a centre for textile manufacturing and shipbuilding. The British established their first factory (trading post) in India there c. 1612, marking the beginning of the British imperial presence in India. The city declined in the 18th century but prospered again with the opening of India's railways. Surat's cottons, silks, brocades, and objects of gold and silver are still famous.