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  • 04/28/2006 09:32 AMIndia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Page 1 of 11

    Bhrat GaarjyaRepublic of India

    Flag EmblemMotto: "Satyameva Jayate"

    Sanskrit: /stymev jte/

    ("Truth Alone Triumphs")Anthem: "Jana Gana Mana"

    /n g mn/

    Capital New Delhi2834N 7712E

    Largest city Mumbai (Bombay)Official language(s) Hindi, English, and 21

    other languagesGovernmentPresidentPrime Minister

    Federal republicAPJ Abdul KalamManmohan Singh

    Independence - Declared - Republic

    From the United Kingdom1947-08-151950-01-26

    Area - Total

    3,287,590 km (7th)1,269,346 sq mi

    IndiaFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The Republic of India is a country that occupies a greater part ofSouth Asia. It has a coastline of over seven thousand kilometers(4349 miles) , borders Pakistan to the west[1], the People's Republicof China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north, and Bangladesh andMyanmar to the east. In the Indian Ocean, it is adjacent to theisland nation of Sri Lanka. India is the seventh-largest country bygeographical area and has one of the most diverse populations ofwildlife, geographical terrain and climate systems found anywherein the world.The name India /'ndi/ is derived from the Old Persian version ofSindhu, the historic local appellation for the River Indus (see Originof India's name). The Constitution of India and common usage alsorecognise Bharat (Hindi: /brt/ ), as an official name ofequal status. A third name, Hindustan (Hindi: /hin d ustn/) (Persian: Land of the Hindus) has been used since thetwelfth century, though its contemporary use is unevenly applied.Home to one of the four major ancient civilisations, a center ofimportant trade routes and vast empires of the Mauryas, Guptas andthe Mughals, India has long played a significant role in humanhistory. Four religions, Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism and Sikhismall have their origins in India, and Islam and Christianity enjoy astrong cultural heritage. Colonized in the British Empire in thenineteenth century, India gained independence in 1947 as a unifiednation after an intensive struggle for independence.With over one billion people, it is the second most populouscountry in the world and the world's largest liberal democracy. Indiahas 28 states and 7 territories, and recognizes 22 official languagesspoken across its diverse regions, including the official nationallanguage, Hindi, and English, which is widely spoken. Afterdecades of intensive efforts to combat the widespread poverty,illiteracy and poor living conditions across the country, India'seconomy is today the fourth-largest in the world in terms ofpurchasing power parity (PPP) and the tenth-largest in nominalterms. Once reliant heavily on agriculture, India's economy is oneof the fastest-growing in the world, and the nation is home tomodern businesses and high-technology industries. India became adeclared nuclear weapons state in 1974.


    Coordinates: 2834N 7712E

  • 04/28/2006 09:32 AMIndia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Page 2 of 11

    - Water (%)

    1,269,346 sq mi 9.56

    Population - 2006 est. - 2001 census - Density

    1,095,351,995 (2nd)1,027,015,247329/km (19th)852/sq mi

    GDP (PPP) - Total - Per capita

    2005 estimate$3.678 trillion (4th)$3400 (125th)

    HDI (2003) 0.602 (127th) mediumCurrency Rupee (Rs.)1 (INR)Time zone - Summer (DST)

    IST (UTC+5:30)not observed (UTC+5:30)

    Internet TLD .inCalling code +911 Re. is singular

    1 History2 Government3 Politics4 Administrative Divisions5 Geography6 Economy7 Demographics8 Culture9 Holidays10 See also11 External links12 Notes13 References

    HistoryMain article: History of India

    Stone Age rock shelters with paintings at Bhimbetka in MadhyaPradesh are the earliest known traces of human life in present-dayIndia. The first known permanent settlements appeared over 9,000years ago, and gradually developed into the Indus Valley Civilisation, which began around 3300 BCE and peakedbetween 2600 BCE and 1900 BCE. Cities of this culture exhibit advanced urban features and scientificaccomplishments such as superior civil drainage systems and the world's earliest dock at Lothal. It was followed bythe Vedic Civilisation, introduced by the Indo-Aryan peoples which laid the ancient foundations of Hinduism andother cultural aspects. In Vedic classical texts and Hindu mythology, the land is referred to as Bharatavarsha. Fromaround 550 BCE, many independent kingdoms known as the Mahajanapadas spread across the country. The countrywas witnessing a complex religious culture, with the birth of Jainism and Buddhism. Ancient universities arose inTaxila, Nalanda, Pataliputra and Ujjain.The empire built by the Maurya dynasty under Emperor Ashoka united most of modern South Asia. From 180 BCE,a series of invasions from Central Asia followed including the Indo-Greeks, Indo-Scythians, Indo-Parthians andKushans in the northwestern Indian Subcontinent. From the third century BCE, the Gupta dynasty oversaw the periodreferred to as ancient India's "Golden Age." In the south, several dynasties, including the Chalukyas, Rashtrakutas,Cheras, Cholas, Pallavas and Pandyas prevailed during different periods. Science, engineering, art, literature,mathematics, astronomy, religion and philosophy flourished under the patronage of these kings.Following the invasions from Central Asia, between the tenth to thetwelfth centuries, much of north India came under the rule of theDelhi Sultanate, and later the Mughal dynasty, who graduallyexpanded their reign throughout the Indian subcontinent.Nevertheless, several indigenous kingdoms flourished, especially inthe south, like the Vijayanagara Empire. During the eighteenth andnineteenth centuries, several European countries, including Portugal,Netherlands, France and the United Kingdom, initially arrived astraders, later took advantage of the fractious nature of relationsbetween the kingdoms, to establish colonies in the country. By 1856,most of India came under control of the British East India

  • 04/28/2006 09:32 AMIndia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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    National symbols of IndiaFlag TirangaEmblem Sarnath LionAnthem "Jana Gana Mana"Song "Vand Mtaram"Animal Royal Bengal TigerBird Indian PeacockFlower LotusTree BanyanFruit MangoSport Field HockeyCalendar Saka

    Company, with the capital at Calcutta. A year later, a nationwideinsurrection of rebelling military units and kingdoms, known locallyas the First War of Indian Independence broke out, which failedeven as it seriously challenged British rule. India thus came underthe direct control of the British Empire.

    In the early twentieth century, a nationwide struggle for independence was launched by theIndian National Congress, led by Indians such as Bal Gangadhar Tilak ,Mahatma Gandhi,Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and Jawaharlal Nehru. Millions of protestors would engage in masscampaigns of civil disobedience with a commitment to ahimsa - total non-violence - that waslargely kept. Gandhi would lead Indians in the Dandi Salt March to defy the salt tax, and anall-out revolt in 1942 demanding that the British Quit India. India gained its independence onAugust 15th, 1947 - 565 princely states united with British-era provinces to form a unitednation, but not before the Muslim-majority provinces were partitioned as a result of theseparatist campaign led by the Muslim League to form Pakistan. Since independence, India hasseen sectarian violence and insurgencies in various parts of the country, but has maintained itsunity and democracy. It has unresolved border disputes with China, which escalated into thebrief Sino-Indian War in 1962; and with Pakistan, which resulted in wars in 1947, 1965, 1971and in 1999 in Kargil. India is a founding member of the Non-Aligned Movement and theUnited Nations. In 1974, India conducted an underground nuclear test, making it an unofficialmember of the "nuclear club". This was followed by a series of five more tests in 1998.Significant economic reforms beginning in 1991 have transformed India into one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, and added to its global and regional clout.See also: Military history of India and Timeline of Indian history

    GovernmentMain article: Government of India

    India is the world's largest democracy. It is a sovereign, secular democraticfederation which consists of 28 states and 7 territories. While states haveconsiderable autonomy and powers of self-government, national laws supercedeall state laws. It has three branches of government: the Legislature, theExecutive, and the Judiciary at the national and state levels. The President is thehead of state, guardian of the constitution and the Supreme commander of theIndian Armed Forces. The President and the Vice-president are electedindirectly by an electoral college for five-year terms. The Parliament of India isbicameral, with the popularly-elected lower house, the Lok Sabha (House of thePeople), elected for five-year terms, and the upper house, the Rajya Sabha(Council of the States) elected for staggered six-year terms by an electoralcollege of members of state legislatures.The Prime Minister is the head of government and has the most executivepowers. He or she is elected by legislators of the political party or coalition commanding a parliamentary majority,and serves a five-year term. The constitution does not explicitly provide for a post of Deputy Prime Minister, but thisoption has been exercised from time to time. All Indian citizens above the age of 18 are eligible to vote. The PrimeMinister heads the Council of Ministers. Any minister holding a portfolio must be a member of either house ofparliament. In the Indian parliamentary system, the executive is subordinate to th