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**Historical Overview**:
– Modern humans arrived in India around 55,000 years ago.
– Settled life emerged in the Indus River basin 9,000 years ago, evolving into the Indus Valley Civilisation.
– Various empires like the Maurya, Gupta, and Vijayanagara shaped early Indian history.
– Religious movements like Buddhism and Jainism challenged the caste system within Hinduism.
– The establishment of the Mughal Empire in the early 16th century marked a significant period in Indian history.
– The rise of Jainism, Buddhism, and Hinduism, along with advancements in science and mathematics, are key historical milestones in India.

**Cultural and Religious Diversity**:
– India’s diverse culture includes Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Islam, Christianity, and Sikhism.
– Indian art, architecture, cinema, music, and spiritual teachings have gained global recognition.
– Traditional Indian tolerance towards wildlife is reflected in protected habitats.
– India is known for its rich biodiversity, with four biodiversity hotspots.
– The country’s forest cover is 21.7% of its area, supporting its megadiverse land.

**Economic Progress and Challenges**:
– India’s population grew significantly from 1951 to 2022, reaching nearly 1.4 billion.
– Per capita income increased from US$64 annually in 1951 to US$2,601.
– Literacy rates rose from 16.6% to 74% during the same period.
– India has become a major economy with a focus on information technology services.
– Despite strides in reducing poverty, India faces economic inequality and challenges like gender inequality and child malnutrition.

**Geography and Environmental Concerns**:
– India’s diverse geography includes the Himalayas, plains, deserts, and coastal regions.
– Natural disasters like floods, cyclones, and earthquakes are common in India.
Water scarcity is a significant challenge in many regions.
– Environmental degradation, pollution, urbanization, and industrialization are growing concerns impacting India’s ecosystems and biodiversity.
– India has a rich biodiversity, with high biological diversity and habitat for various species.

**Post-Independence India and Modern Developments**:
– Independence in 1947 led to the partition of India into India and Pakistan.
– India adopted a secular and democratic constitution in 1950.
– Economic liberalization in the 1980s transformed India into a fast-growing economy.
– India faces challenges like poverty, religious violence, and separatism, along with unresolved territorial disputes.
– India’s modern history includes advancements in technology, the founding of the Indian National Congress, and economic setbacks in the late 19th century.

India (Wikipedia)

India, officially the Republic of India (ISO: Bhārat Gaṇarājya), is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by area; the most populous country as of June 2023; and from the time of its independence in 1947, the world's most populous democracy. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, and the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west; China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north; and Bangladesh and Myanmar to the east. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives; its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand, Myanmar, and Indonesia.

Republic of India
Bhārat Gaṇarājya
Motto: "Satyameva Jayate" (Sanskrit)
"Truth Alone Triumphs"
Anthem: "Jana Gana Mana" (Hindi)
"Thou Art the Ruler of the Minds of All People"
National song: "Vande Mataram" (Sanskrit)
"I Bow to Thee, Mother"
Image of a globe centred on India, with India highlighted.
Territory controlled by India shown in dark green; territory claimed but not controlled shown in light green
CapitalNew Delhi
28°36′50″N 77°12′30″E / 28.61389°N 77.20833°E / 28.61389; 77.20833
Largest city
Official languages
Recognised national languagesNone
Recognised regional languages
Native languages447 languages
GovernmentFederal parliamentary republic
• President
Droupadi Murmu
Jagdeep Dhankhar
Narendra Modi
Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud
Rajya Sabha
Lok Sabha
• Dominion
15 August 1947
• Republic
26 January 1950
• Total
3,287,263 km2 (1,269,219 sq mi) (7th)
• Water (%)
• 2023 estimate
Increase 1,428,627,663 (1st)
• 2011 census
Neutral increase 1,210,854,977 (2nd)
• Density
424.4/km2 (1,099.2/sq mi) (30th)
GDP (PPP)2024 estimate
• Total
Increase $14.26 trillion (3rd)
• Per capita
Increase $9,890 (127th)
GDP (nominal)2024 estimate
• Total
Increase $4.11 trillion (5th)
• Per capita
Increase $2,850 (139th)
Gini (2019)Negative increase 35.7
HDI (2022)Increase 0.644
medium (134th)
CurrencyIndian rupee (₹) (INR)
Time zoneUTC+05:30 (IST)
DST is not observed.
Date format
  • dd-mm-yyyy
Driving sideleft
Calling code+91
ISO 3166 codeIN
Internet (others)

Modern humans arrived on the Indian subcontinent from Africa no later than 55,000 years ago. Their long occupation, initially in varying forms of isolation as hunter-gatherers, has made the region highly diverse, second only to Africa in human genetic diversity. Settled life emerged on the subcontinent in the western margins of the Indus river basin 9,000 years ago, evolving gradually into the Indus Valley Civilisation of the third millennium BCE. By 1200 BCE, an archaic form of Sanskrit, an Indo-European language, had diffused into India from the northwest. Its evidence today is found in the hymns of the Rigveda. Preserved by an oral tradition that was resolutely vigilant, the Rigveda records the dawning of Hinduism in India. The Dravidian languages of India were supplanted in the northern and western regions. By 400 BCE, stratification and exclusion by caste had emerged within Hinduism, and Buddhism and Jainism had arisen, proclaiming social orders unlinked to heredity. Early political consolidations gave rise to the loose-knit Maurya and Gupta Empires based in the Ganges Basin. Their collective era was suffused with wide-ranging creativity, but also marked by the declining status of women, and the incorporation of untouchability into an organised system of belief. In South India, the Middle kingdoms exported Dravidian-languages scripts and religious cultures to the kingdoms of Southeast Asia.

In the early medieval era, Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and Zoroastrianism became established on India's southern and western coasts. Muslim armies from Central Asia intermittently overran India's northern plains, eventually founding the Delhi Sultanate, and drawing northern India into the cosmopolitan networks of medieval Islam. In the 15th century, the Vijayanagara Empire created a long-lasting composite Hindu culture in south India. In the Punjab, Sikhism emerged, rejecting institutionalised religion. The Mughal Empire, in 1526, ushered in two centuries of relative peace, leaving a legacy of luminous architecture. Gradually expanding rule of the British East India Company followed, turning India into a colonial economy, but also consolidating its sovereignty. British Crown rule began in 1858. The rights promised to Indians were granted slowly, but technological changes were introduced, and modern ideas of education and the public life took root. A pioneering and influential nationalist movement emerged, which was noted for nonviolent resistance and became the major factor in ending British rule. In 1947 the British Indian Empire was partitioned into two independent dominions, a Hindu-majority Dominion of India and a Muslim-majority Dominion of Pakistan, amid large-scale loss of life and an unprecedented migration.

India has been a federal republic since 1950, governed through a democratic parliamentary system. It is a pluralistic, multilingual and multi-ethnic society. India's population grew from 361 million in 1951 to almost 1.4 billion in 2022. During the same time, its nominal per capita income increased from US$64 annually to US$2,601, and its literacy rate from 16.6% to 74%. From being a comparatively destitute country in 1951, India has become a fast-growing major economy and a hub for information technology services, with an expanding middle class. India has a space programme with several planned or completed extraterrestrial missions. Indian movies, music, and spiritual teachings play an increasing role in global culture. India has substantially reduced its rate of poverty, though at the cost of increasing economic inequality. India is a nuclear-weapon state, which ranks high in military expenditure. It has disputes over Kashmir with its neighbours, Pakistan and China, unresolved since the mid-20th century. Among the socio-economic challenges India faces are gender inequality, child malnutrition, and rising levels of air pollution. India's land is megadiverse, with four biodiversity hotspots. Its forest cover comprises 21.7% of its area. India's wildlife, which has traditionally been viewed with tolerance in India's culture, is supported among these forests, and elsewhere, in protected habitats.

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