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India, officially the Republic of India (
Hindi Hindi (Devanagari: , हिंदी, ISO 15919, ISO: ), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi (Devanagari: , ISO 15919, ISO: ), is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in Hindi Belt, North India. Hindi has been described as a Standard la ...

Hindi
: ), is a country in
South Asia South Asia is the southern region of Asia, which is defined in both geography, geographical and culture, ethno-cultural terms. The region consists of the countries of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri La ...

South Asia
. It is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country, and the most populous
democracy Democracy ( gr, δημοκρατία, ''dēmokratiā'', from ''dēmos'' 'people' and ''kratos'' 'rule') is a form of government in which people, the people have the authority to deliberate and decide legislation ("direct democracy"), or to cho ...

democracy
in the world. Bounded by the
Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's five ocean The ocean (also the or the world ocean) is the body of that covers approximately 70.8% of the surface of and contains 97% of . Another definition is "any of the large ...

Indian Ocean
on the south, the
Arabian Sea The Arabian Sea ( ar, بحر العرب ''Bahr al-Arab'') is a region of the northern Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's oceanic divisions, covering or 19.8% of the water Water is an Inorganic co ...
on the southwest, and the
Bay of Bengal The Bay of Bengal is the northeastern part of the Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's five oceanic divisions, covering or 19.8% of the water on Earth's surface. It is bounded by Asia to the north, Africa to th ...

Bay of Bengal
on the southeast, it shares land borders with
Pakistan Pakistan, . Pronounced variably in English as , , , and . officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies by population, fifth-most populous country, with a popul ...

Pakistan
to the west;
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in . It is the world's , with a of more than 1.4 billion. China spans five geographical and 14 different countries, the in the world after . Covering an area of ap ...

China
,
Nepal Nepal (; ne, नेपाल ), officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal ( ne, सङ्घीय लोकतान्त्रिक गणतन्त्र नेपाल ), is a landlocked country in South Asia. It is ma ...

Nepal
, and
Bhutan Bhutan (; dz, འབྲུག་ཡུལ་, Druk Yul, ), officially known as the Kingdom of Bhutan ( dz, འབྲུག་རྒྱལ་ཁབ་, Druk Gyal Khap), is a landlocked country in the Eastern Himalayas. It is bordered by Chin ...

Bhutan
to the north; and
Bangladesh Bangladesh (, bn, বাংলাদেশ, ), officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh, is a country in South Asia South Asia is the southern region of Asia, which is defined in both geography, geographical and culture, ethno-c ...

Bangladesh
and
Myanmar Myanmar, ); UK pronunciations: US pronunciations incl. . Note: Wikipedia's IPA conventions require indicating /r/ even in British English although only some British English speakers pronounce r at the end of syllables. As John C. Wells, John ...

Myanmar
to the east. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of
Sri Lanka Sri Lanka (, ; si, ශ්‍රී ලංකාව, Śrī Laṅkā, translit-std=ISO (); ta, இலங்கை, Ilaṅkai, translit-std=ISO ()), formerly known as Ceylon, and officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, is ...

Sri Lanka
and the
Maldives Maldives (, ; dv, ދިވެހިރާއްޖެ, translit=Dhivehi Raajje IPA: ), officially the Republic of Maldives, is an archipelagic country in the Indian subcontinent of Asia Asia () is 's largest and most populous , located prima ...

Maldives
; its
Andaman and Nicobar Islands Andaman and Nicobar Islands is a union territory of India consisting of 572 islands, of which 38 are inhabited, at the juncture of the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea. The territory is about north of Aceh in Indonesia and separated from Thai ...

Andaman and Nicobar Islands
share a maritime border with
Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country in Southeast Asia. It is located at the centre of the Mainland Southeast Asia, Indochinese Peninsula, spanning , wi ...

Thailand
,
Myanmar Myanmar, ); UK pronunciations: US pronunciations incl. . Note: Wikipedia's IPA conventions require indicating /r/ even in British English although only some British English speakers pronounce r at the end of syllables. As John C. Wells, John ...

Myanmar
and
Indonesia Indonesia ( ), officially the Republic of Indonesia ( id, Republik Indonesia, links=yes ), is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is t ...

Indonesia
.
Modern humans Early modern human (EMH) or anatomically modern human (AMH) are terms used to distinguish ''Homo sapiens Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most abundant and widespread of , characterized by and large, complex brains. This has enabled ...
arrived on the Indian subcontinent from Africa no later than 55,000 years ago. (a)
(b)
(c)
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 Genetic diversity is the total number of genetic characteristics in the genetic makeup of a species, it ranges widely from the number of species to differences within species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classificati ...
. Settled life emerged on the subcontinent in the western margins of the
Indus#REDIRECT Indus River
{{Redirect category shell, {{R from move {{R from miscapitalisation {{R unprintworthy ...

Indus
river basin 9,000 years ago, evolving gradually into the
Indus Valley Civilisation , c. 2500 BCE. Terracotta Terracotta, terra cotta, or terra-cotta (; Italian language, Italian: "baked earth", from the Latin ''terra cocta''), a type of earthenware, is a clay-based ceramic glaze, unglazed or glazed ceramic, where the ...
of the third millennium BCE. (a) ; (b) By , an archaic form of
Sanskrit Sanskrit (; attributively , ; nominalization, nominally , , ) is a classical language of South Asia that belongs to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It arose in South Asia after its predecessor langua ...

Sanskrit
, an
Indo-European language The Indo-European languages are a language family native to western and southern Eurasia. It comprises most of the languages of Europe together with those of the northern Indian subcontinent and the Iranian Plateau. A few of these languages, su ...
, had
diffused Molecular diffusion, often simply called diffusion, is the thermal motion of all (liquid or gas) particles at temperature Temperature is a physical quantity that expresses hot and cold. It is the manifestation of thermal energy, present i ...
into India from the northwest, (a) ,

(c)
(d)
(e) Quote: "Although the collapse of the Indus valley civilization is no longer believed to have been due to an ‘Aryan invasion’ it is widely thought that, at roughly the same time, or perhaps a few centuries later, new Indo-Aryan-speaking people and influences began to enter the subcontinent from the north-west. Detailed evidence is lacking. Nevertheless, a predecessor of the language that would eventually be called Sanskrit was probably introduced into the north-west sometime between 3,900 and 3,000 years ago. This language was related to one then spoken in eastern Iran; and both of these languages belonged to the Indo-European language family. ... It seems likely that various small-scale migrations were involved in the gradual introduction of the predecessor language and associated cultural characteristics. However, there may not have been a tight relationship between movements of people on the one hand, and changes in language and culture on the other. Moreover, the process whereby a dynamic new force gradually arose—a people with a distinct ideology who eventually seem to have referred to themselves as ‘Arya’—was certainly two-way. That is, it involved a blending of new features which came from outside with other features—probably including some surviving Harappan influences—that were already present. Anyhow, it would be quite a few centuries before Sanskrit was written down. And the hymns and stories of the Arya people—especially the Vedas and the later Mahabharata and Ramayana epics—are poor guides as to historical events. Of course, the emerging Arya were to have a huge impact on the history of the subcontinent. Nevertheless, little is known about their early presence.";
(f)
unfolding as the language of the ''
Rigveda The ''Rigveda'' or ''Rig Veda'' ( ', from ' "praise" and ' "knowledge") is an of s (''suktas''). It is one of the four sacred canonical (') known as the . The ''Rigveda'' is the oldest known text. Its early layers are one of the oldes ...
'', and recording the dawning of
Hinduism Hinduism () is an Indian religion Indian religions, sometimes also termed Dharmic religions or Indic religions, are the religions that originated in the Indian subcontinent. These religions, which include Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, ...

Hinduism
in India. (a) ;
(b) ;
(c)
(d)
The
Dravidian languages Dravidian languages (or sometimes Dravidic languages) are a family of languages spoken by 220 million people, mainly in southern India and north-east Sri Lanka, with pockets elsewhere in South Asia. Since the colonial era, there have been smal ...
of India were supplanted in the northern and western regions. (a) ; (b) By ,
stratification Stratification may refer to: In mathematics: * Stratification (mathematics), any consistent assignment of numbers to predicate symbols * Stratified sampling , Data stratification in statistics In earth sciences: * Stable and unstable stratificati ...
and exclusion by
caste Caste is a form of social stratification Social stratification refers to a society's categorization of its people into groups based on Socioeconomic status, socioeconomic factors like wealth, income, Race (human categorization), race, educati ...
had emerged within Hinduism, and
Buddhism Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and ...
and
Jainism Jainism (), traditionally known as ''Jain Dharma'', is an ancient Indian religion. It is one of the oldest Indian religions. The three main pillars of Jainism are ''Ahimsa in Jainism, ahiṃsā'' (non-violence), ''anekāntavāda'' (non-absolut ...
had arisen, proclaiming
social order The term social order can be used in two senses: In the first sense, it refers to a particular system of social structure In the social sciences, social structure is the patterned social arrangements in society that are both emergence, emergen ...
s unlinked to heredity. Early political consolidations gave rise to the loose-knit
Maurya The Maurya Empire was a geographically extensive Iron Age list of ancient great powers, historical power in South Asia based in Magadha, founded by Chandragupta Maurya in 322 BCE, and existing in loose-knit fashion until 185 BCE. Quote: "Ma ...
and
Gupta Empire The Gupta Empire was an Outline of ancient India, ancient Indian empire which existed from the early 4th century CE to late 6th century CE. At its zenith, from approximately 319 to 467 CE, it covered much of the Indian subcontinent. This period ...

Gupta Empire
s based in the
Ganges Basin The Ganga Basin is a part of the Ganges The Ganges ( ) or Ganga ( , ) is a trans-boundary river of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere, Eastern and Northern Hemi ...

Ganges Basin
. (a) ; (b) ; (c) ; (d) Their collective
era An era is a span of time defined for the purposes of chronology 222px, Joseph Scaliger's ''De emendatione temporum'' (1583) began the modern science of chronology Chronology (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging t ...

era
was suffused with wide-ranging creativity, (a) ; (b) but also marked by the declining status of women, (a) ; (b) ; (c) and the incorporation of
untouchability Untouchability is the practice of ostracising a group of people regarded as 'untouchables', as ascribed in the Hindu Hindus (; ) are persons who regard themselves as culturally, ethnically, or religiously adhering to aspects of Hindu ...
into an organised system of belief. In
South India South India is a region consisting of the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, second-most populous ...

South India
, the Middle kingdoms exported Dravidian-languages scripts and religious cultures to the kingdoms of
Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographical United Nations geoscheme for Asia#South-eastern Asia, southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions ...

Southeast Asia
. In the early medieval era,
Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as the world of Abrahamism and Semitic religions, are a group of Semitic-originated religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of ...

Christianity
,
Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection is a word or ex ...
,
Judaism Judaism is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic, monotheism, monotheistic, and ethnic religion comprising the collective religious, cultural, and legal tradition and civilization of the Jewish people. It has its roots as an organized religion ...
, and
Zoroastrianism Zoroastrianism or Mazdayasna is an Iranian religions, Iranian religion and one of the world's oldest continuously-practiced organized faiths, based on the teachings of the Iranian peoples, Iranian-speaking prophet Zoroaster (also known as ''Za ...
put down roots on India's southern and western coasts. (a) ; (b) ; (c) Muslim armies from
Central Asia Central Asia is a region in Asia Asia () is 's largest and most populous , located primarily in the and . It shares the continental of with the continent of and the continental landmass of with both Europe and . Asia covers an area ...

Central Asia
intermittently overran India's northern plains, (a) ; (b) eventually establishing the
Delhi Sultanate The Delhi Sultanate was an Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see int ...
, and drawing northern India into the cosmopolitan networks of medieval Islam. (a) ; (b) In the 15th century, the
Vijayanagara Empire The Vijayanagara Empire, also called Karnata Kingdom, was based in the Deccan Plateau region in South India South India is a region located in the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ...

Vijayanagara Empire
created a long-lasting composite Hindu culture in south India. " In the
Punjab Punjab (; ; ; ; also as Panjāb or Panj-Āb) is a geopolitical, cultural, and in , specifically in the northern part of the , comprising areas of eastern and . The boundaries of the region are ill-defined and focus on historical accounts. ...

Punjab
,
Sikhism Sikhism () or Sikhi ( pa, ਸਿੱਖੀ ', , from pa, ਸਿੱਖ, lit=disciple', 'seeker', or 'learner, translit=Sikh, label=none)''Sikhism'' (indigenously known as ''Sikhī'') originated from the word ''Sikh'', which comes from the Sanskr ...
emerged, rejecting institutionalised religion. The
Mughal Empire The Mughal, Mogul, or Moghul Empire was an early modern The early modern period of modern history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, humanity's past. It is understood through archaeology, anthropology, ge ...
, 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 Sovereignty is the supreme authority within a territory. Sovereignty entails hierarchy within the state, as well as external autonomy for states. In any state, sovereignty is assigned to the person, body, or institution that has the ultimate a ...
. (a) ; (b)
British Crown rule
British Crown rule
began in 1858. The rights promised to Indians were granted slowly,; (b) but technological changes were introduced, and ideas of education, modernity 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
partition
partition
ed into two independent
dominions The term dominion was used to refer to one of several self-governing nations of the British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other De ...
, a Hindu-majority
Dominion of India The Dominion of India, officially the Union of India,* Quote: “The first collective use (of the word "dominion") occurred at the Colonial Conference (April to May 1907) when the title was conferred upon Canada and Australia. New Zealand and Ne ...
and a Muslim-majority
Dominion of Pakistan The Federation of Pakistan, also called the Dominion of Pakistan, was an independent federal dominion in South Asia established on Independence Day (Pakistan), 14 August 1947. At its inception, the Dominion of Pakistan did not include prince ...
, amid large-scale loss of life and an unprecedented migration. India has been a
federal republic A federal republic is a federation A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of In ...
since 1950, governed in a democratic
parliamentary system A parliamentary system or parliamentary democracy is a system of democratic Democrat, Democrats, or Democratic may refer to: *A proponent of democracy Democracy ( gr, δημοκρατία, ''dēmokratiā'', from ''dēmos'' 'people' an ...
. It is a pluralistic, multilingual and multi-ethnic society. India's population grew from 361 million in 1951 to 1.211 billion in 2011. During the same time, its nominal
per capita income Per capita income (PCI) or total income measures the average income earned per person in a given area (city, region, country, etc.) in a specified year. It is calculated by dividing the area's total income by its total population. Per capita i ...
increased from US$64 annually to US$1,498, 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
major economy
and a hub for information technology services, with an expanding middle class. It has a space programme which includes 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 A military budget (or military expenditure), also known as a defense budget, is the amount of finances, financial resources dedicated by a Sovereign state, state to raising and maintaining an armed forces or other methods essential for defense purp ...
. It has disputes over
Kashmir Kashmir, ks, کٔشیٖر, kaśīr () is the northernmost geographical region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term "Kashmir" denoted only the Kashmir Valley The Kashmir Valley, also known as the ''Vale ...

Kashmir
with its neighbours, Pakistan and China, unresolved since the mid-20th century.(a) ;
(b) ;
(c)
Among the socio-economic challenges India faces are
gender inequality Gender inequality is the social process by which men and women are not treated as equals. The treatment may arise from distinctions regarding biology, psychology, or cultural norms. Some of these distinctions are empirically-grounded while othe ...
, child malnutrition, and rising levels of
air pollution Air pollution is the presence of substances in the atmosphere that are harmful to the health of humans and other Outline of life forms, living beings, or cause damage to the climate or to materials. There are different types of air pollutants, ...
. India's land is megadiverse, with four
biodiversity hotspots A biodiversity hotspot is a ecoregion, biogeographic region with significant levels of biodiversity that is threatened by human habitation. Norman Myers wrote about the concept in two articles in “The Environmentalist” (1988), and 1990 revised ...

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.


Etymology

According to the ''
Oxford English Dictionary The ''Oxford English Dictionary'' (''OED'') is the principal historical dictionary A historical dictionary or dictionary on historical principles is a dictionary which deals not only with the latterday meanings of words but also the historica ...
'' (third edition 2009), the name "India" is derived from the
Classical Latin Classical Latin is the form of Latin language Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestur ...
''India'', a reference to
South Asia South Asia is the southern region of Asia, which is defined in both geography, geographical and culture, ethno-cultural terms. The region consists of the countries of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri La ...

South Asia
and an uncertain region to its east; and in turn derived successively from:
Hellenistic Greek Koine Greek (, , Greek approximately ;. , , , lit. "Common Greek"), also known as Alexandrian dialect, common Attic, Hellenistic or Biblical Greek, was the common supra-regional form of Greek spoken and written during the Hellenistic period ...

Hellenistic Greek
''India'' ('' Ἰνδία'');
ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek (, ), refers collectively to the diale ...
''Indos'' ('' Ἰνδός'');
Old Persian Old Persian is one of the two directly attested Old Iranian languages The Iranian or Iranic languages are a branch of the Indo-Iranian languagesIndo-Iranian may refer to: * Indo-Iranian languages * Indo-Iranians, the various peoples speaking ...
''
Hindush Hindush (or ''Hindūš'') was an Indian province of the Achaemenid Empire The Achaemenid Empire (; peo, 𐎧𐏁𐏂, translit=Xšāça, translation=The Empire), also called the First Persian Empire, was an ancient Iranian empire based ...
'', an eastern province of the
Achaemenid empire The Achaemenid Empire (; peo, 𐎧𐏁𐏂, translit=Xšāça, translation=The Empire), also called the First Persian Empire, was an ancient Iranian Iranian may refer to: * Iran Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia and offi ...

Achaemenid empire
; and ultimately its
cognate In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most langu ...
, the
Sanskrit Sanskrit (; attributively , ; nominalization, nominally , , ) is a classical language of South Asia that belongs to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It arose in South Asia after its predecessor langua ...

Sanskrit
''Sindhu'', or "river," specifically the
Indus River The Indus ( ) is a transboundary river A transboundary river is a river that crosses at least one political border, either a border within a nation or an international boundary. Bangladesh has the highest number of these rivers, including t ...

Indus River
and, by implication, its well-settled southern basin. The
ancient Greeks Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging to a period of History of Greece, Greek history from the Greek Dark Ages of the 12th–9th centuries BC to the end of Classical Antiquity, antiquity ( AD 600). This era was ...
referred to the Indians as ''Indoi'' ('), which translates as "The people of the Indus". The term ''
Bharat India, officially the Republic of India (Hindi Hindi ( Devanagari: हिन्दी, IAST/ ISO 15919: ''Hindī''), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi ( Devanagari: मानक हिन्दी, IAST/ ISO 15919: ''Mānak ...
'' (; ), mentioned in both
Indian epic poetry Indian epic poetry is the epic poetry written in the Indian subcontinent, traditionally called ''Kavya'' (or ''Kāvya''; Sanskrit: काव्य, IAST: ''kāvyá''). The ''Ramayana'' and the ''Mahabharata'', which were originally composed in S ...
and the
Constitution of India The Constitution of India (IAST The International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration (IAST) is a transliteration scheme that allows the lossless romanisation Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the sci ...

Constitution of India
, is used in its variations by many Indian languages. A modern rendering of the historical name ''Bharatavarsha'', which applied originally to
northern India North India is a loosely defined region consisting of the northern part of India India, officially the Republic of India (: ), is a country in . It is the by area, the country, and the most populous in the world. Bounded by the on ...

northern India
, ''Bharat'' gained increased currency from the mid-19th century as a native name for India. ''
Hindustan Hindustan (: ) pronounced as (ostn or hin-DOU-stan), along with its shortened form Hind (), is the name for India, broadly the , which later became used by its inhabitants in . Other toponyms of the subcontinent include , , and . After the , ...

Hindustan
'' () is a
Middle Persian Middle Persian or Pahlavi, also known by its endonym Pārsīk or Pārsīg (𐭯𐭠𐭫𐭮𐭩𐭪) in its later form, is a Western Middle Iranian language which became the literary language of the Sasanian Empire. For some time after the Sasan ...
name for India, introduced during the
Mughal Empire The Mughal, Mogul, or Moghul Empire was an early modern The early modern period of modern history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, humanity's past. It is understood through archaeology, anthropology, ge ...
and used widely since. Its meaning has varied, referring to a region encompassing present-day northern India and
Pakistan Pakistan, . Pronounced variably in English as , , , and . officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies by population, fifth-most populous country, with a popul ...

Pakistan
or to India in its near entirety.


History


Ancient India

By 55,000 years ago, the first modern humans, or ''
Homo sapiens Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most abundant and widespread species of primate, characterized by bipedality, bipedalism and large, complex brains. This has enabled the development of advanced tools, culture, and language. Humans are highl ...

Homo sapiens
'', had arrived on the Indian subcontinent from Africa, where they had earlier evolved. Quote: "Modern human beings—''Homo sapiens''—originated in Africa. Then, intermittently, sometime between 60,000 and 80,000 years ago, tiny groups of them began to enter the north-west of the Indian subcontinent. It seems likely that initially they came by way of the coast. ... it is virtually certain that there were ''Homo sapiens'' in the subcontinent 55,000 years ago, even though the earliest fossils that have been found of them date to only about 30,000 years before the present. (page 1)" Quote: "Y-Chromosome and Mt-DNA data support the colonization of South Asia by modern humans originating in Africa. ... Coalescence dates for most non-European populations average to between 73–55 ka." Quote: "Scholars estimate that the first successful expansion of the ''Homo sapiens'' range beyond Africa and across the Arabian Peninsula occurred from as early as 80,000 years ago to as late as 40,000 years ago, although there may have been prior unsuccessful emigrations. Some of their descendants extended the human range ever further in each generation, spreading into each habitable land they encountered. One human channel was along the warm and productive coastal lands of the Persian Gulf and northern Indian Ocean. Eventually, various bands entered India between 75,000 years ago and 35,000 years ago (page 23)" The earliest known modern human remains in South Asia date to about 30,000 years ago. After , evidence for domestication of food crops and animals, construction of permanent structures, and storage of agricultural surplus appeared in
Mehrgarh Mehrgarh (; ur, ) is a Neolithic The Neolithic period is the final division of the Stone Age The Stone Age was a broad prehistoric Prehistory, also known as pre-literary history, is the period of human history Human his ...

Mehrgarh
and other sites in what is now
Balochistan, Pakistan Balochistan (; ur, ) is one of the four provinces of Pakistan The administrative units of Pakistan refers to the subnational administrative divisions that play a role in the governance Governance is all the processes of interact ...

Balochistan, Pakistan
. These gradually developed into the
Indus Valley Civilisation , c. 2500 BCE. Terracotta Terracotta, terra cotta, or terra-cotta (; Italian language, Italian: "baked earth", from the Latin ''terra cocta''), a type of earthenware, is a clay-based ceramic glaze, unglazed or glazed ceramic, where the ...
, the first urban culture in South Asia, which flourished during in what is now Pakistan and western India. Centred around cities such as
Mohenjo-daro Mohenjo-daro (; sd, موئن جو دڙو'', ''meaning 'Mound of the Dead Men';
,
Harappa Harappa (; Urdu Urdu (; ur, , ALA-LC: ) is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in South Asia South Asia is the southern region of Asia, which is defined in both geography, geographical and culture, ethno-cultural terms. The regi ...

Harappa
,
Dholavira Dholavira ( gu, ધોળાવીરા) is an archaeological site An archaeological site is a place (or group of physical sites) in which evidence of past activity is preserved (either prehistoric or recorded history, historic or contempora ...

Dholavira
, and
Kalibangan Kalibangān is a town located at on the left or southern banks of the Ghaggar (Ghaggar-Hakra River) in Tehsil Pilibangān, between Suratgarh and Hanumangarh in Hanumangarh District, Rajasthan, India 205 km. from Bikaner. It is also identifi ...

Kalibangan
, and relying on varied forms of subsistence, the civilisation engaged robustly in crafts production and wide-ranging trade. During the period , many regions of the subcontinent transitioned from the
Chalcolithic The Chalcolithic (),The New Oxford Dictionary of English (1998) , p. 301: "Chalcolithic /,kælkəl'lɪθɪk/ adjective ''Archaeology'' of, relating to, or denoting a period in the 4th and 3rd millennium BC, chiefly in the Near East and SE Europe, ...

Chalcolithic
cultures to the
Iron Age The Iron Age is the final epoch of the three-age division of the prehistory Prehistory, also known as pre-literary history, is the period of human history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, humanity's pa ...
ones. The
Vedas upright=1.2, The Vedas are ancient Sanskrit texts of Hinduism. Above: A page from the '' Atharvaveda''. The Vedas (, , ) are a large body of religious texts originating in ancient India. Composed in Vedic Sanskrit, the texts constitute the o ...

Vedas
, the oldest scriptures associated with
Hinduism Hinduism () is an Indian religion Indian religions, sometimes also termed Dharmic religions or Indic religions, are the religions that originated in the Indian subcontinent. These religions, which include Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, ...

Hinduism
, were composed during this period, and historians have analysed these to posit a
Vedic culture upright=1.2, The Vedas are ancient Sanskrit texts of Hinduism. Above: A page from the '' Atharvaveda''. The Vedas (; Sanskrit Sanskrit (, attributively , ''saṃskṛta-'', nominalization, nominally , ''saṃskṛtam'') is a classical la ...
in the
Punjab region Punjab (; ; ; ; also romanised Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and m ...

Punjab region
and the upper
Gangetic Plain #REDIRECT Indo-Gangetic Plain#REDIRECT Indo-Gangetic Plain Image:India-Pakistan Borderlands at Night.JPG, 250px, Clusters of yellow lights on the Indo-Gangetic Plain reveal numerous cities large and small in this astronaut photograph of norther ...

Gangetic Plain
. Most historians also consider this period to have encompassed several waves of
Indo-Aryan migration The Indo-Aryan migrations were the migrations into the Indian subcontinent of Indo-Aryan peoples, an ethnolinguistic group that spoke Indo-Aryan languages, the predominant languages of today's North India North India is a loosely define ...
into the subcontinent from the north-west. The
caste system Caste is a form of social stratification characterized by endogamy, hereditary transmission of a style of life which often includes an occupation, ritual status in a hierarchy, and customary social interaction and exclusion based on cultural no ...
, which created a hierarchy of priests, warriors, and free peasants, but which excluded indigenous peoples by labelling their occupations impure, arose during this period. On the Deccan Plateau, archaeological evidence from this period suggests the existence of a chiefdom stage of political organisation. In
South India South India is a region consisting of the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, second-most populous ...

South India
, a progression to sedentary life is indicated by the large number of
megalith A megalith is a large Rock (geology), stone that has been used to construct a prehistoric structure or monument, either alone or together with other stones. There are over 35,000 in Europe alone, located widely from Sweden to the Mediterranean ...

megalith
ic monuments dating from this period, as well as by nearby traces of
agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentary Image:Family watching television 1958.jpg, Exercise trends, Increases in sedentary behaviors su ...

agriculture
, irrigation tanks, and craft traditions. In the late Vedic period, around the 6th century BCE, the small states and chiefdoms of the Ganges Plain and the north-western regions had consolidated into 16 major oligarchies and monarchies that were known as the ''
mahajanapadas The Mahājanapadas ( sa, great realm, from ''maha'', "great", and ''janapada'' "foothold of a people") were sixteen Realm, kingdoms or oligarchy, oligarchic republics that existed in Northern History of India, ancient India from the sixth to ...
''. The emerging urbanisation gave rise to non-Vedic religious movements, two of which became independent religions.
Jainism Jainism (), traditionally known as ''Jain Dharma'', is an ancient Indian religion. It is one of the oldest Indian religions. The three main pillars of Jainism are ''Ahimsa in Jainism, ahiṃsā'' (non-violence), ''anekāntavāda'' (non-absolut ...

Jainism
came into prominence during the life of its exemplar,
Mahavira Mahavira ( sa, महावीर:), also known as Vardhamana, was the 24th ''Tirthankara In Jainism Jainism (), traditionally known as ''Jain Dharma'', is an ancient Indian religion and the method of acquiring perfect knowledge ...

Mahavira
.
Buddhism Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and ...

Buddhism
, based on the teachings of
Gautama Buddha Gautama Buddha, popularly known as the Buddha (also known as Siddhattha Gotama or Siddhārtha Gautama or Buddha Shakyamuni), was an , a religious leader and teacher who lived in (c. 6th to 5th century BCE or c. 5th to 4th century BCE). He ...

Gautama Buddha
, attracted followers from all social classes excepting the middle class; chronicling the life of the Buddha was central to the beginnings of recorded history in India. In an age of increasing urban wealth, both religions held up
renunciation Renunciation (or renouncing) is the act of rejecting something, especially if it is something that the renunciant has previously enjoyed or endorsed. In religion, renunciation often indicates an abandonment of pursuit of material comforts, in th ...
as an ideal, and both established long-lasting monastic traditions. Politically, by the 3rd century BCE, the kingdom of
Magadha Magadha was an ancient Indian kingdom in southern Bihar Bihar (; ) is a states and union territories of India, state in eastern India. It is the list of states and union territories of India by population, third-largest state by populatio ...

Magadha
had annexed or reduced other states to emerge as the
Mauryan Empire The Maurya Empire was a geographically extensive Iron Age The Iron Age is the final epoch of the three-age system, three-age division of the prehistory and protohistory of Homo sapiens, humanity. It was preceded by the Stone Age (Paleoli ...
. The empire was once thought to have controlled most of the subcontinent except the far south, but its core regions are now thought to have been separated by large autonomous areas. The Mauryan kings are known as much for their empire-building and determined management of public life as for
Ashoka Ashoka (; Brāhmi: 𑀅𑀲𑁄𑀓, ''Asoka'', IAST The International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration (IAST) is a transliteration scheme that allows the lossless romanisation of Brahmic family, Indic scripts as employed by Sanskrit ...

Ashoka
's renunciation of militarism and far-flung advocacy of the Buddhist ''
dhamma Dharma (; sa, धर्म, dharma, ; pi, dhamma, italic=yes; ta, aṟam, italic=yes) is a key concept with multiple meanings in Indian religions Indian religions, sometimes also termed Dharmic religions or Indic religions, are the rel ...
''. The Sangam literature of the
Tamil language Tamil (; ' , ) is a Dravidian language Dravidian languages (or sometimes Dravidic languages) are a family of languages In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recogn ...

Tamil language
reveals that, between and , the southern peninsula was ruled by the
Cheras The Chera dynasty ( ta, சேரர்) (ISO 15919, or Cēra), , was one of the principal lineages in the early history of the present day state of Kerala and some parts of Tamil Nadu in southern India. Together with the Chola dynasty, Cholas ...
, the
Cholas The Chola dynasty ( ta, சோழ வம்சம்) was a Tamil Tamil may refer to: * Tamils, an ethnic group native to India, Sri Lanka and some other parts of Asia **Sri Lankan Tamils, Tamil people native to Sri Lanka **Tamil Malaysian ...

Cholas
, and the
Pandyas The Pandya dynasty, also known as the Pandyas of Madurai, was a dynasty of south India, one of the three famous List of Tamil monarchs, Tamil lineages, the other two being the Chola dynasty, Chola and the Chera dynasty, Chera.Subbarayalu, Y. ...
, dynasties that and with
West 250px, A compass rose with west highlighted in black West or Occident is one of the four cardinal directions or points of the compass The points of the compass are the vectors by which planet-based directions are conventionally defined. A co ...

West
and
South-East Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographical United Nations geoscheme for Asia#South-eastern Asia, southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions ...

South-East Asia
. In North India, Hinduism asserted patriarchal control within the family, leading to increased subordination of women. By the 4th and 5th centuries, the
Gupta Empire The Gupta Empire was an Outline of ancient India, ancient Indian empire which existed from the early 4th century CE to late 6th century CE. At its zenith, from approximately 319 to 467 CE, it covered much of the Indian subcontinent. This period ...

Gupta Empire
had created a complex system of administration and taxation in the greater Ganges Plain; this system became a model for later Indian kingdoms. Under the Guptas, a renewed Hinduism based on devotion, rather than the management of ritual, began to assert itself. This renewal was reflected in a flowering of
sculpture Sculpture is the branch of the visual arts that operates in three dimensions. It is one of the plastic arts. Durable sculptural processes originally used carving (the removal of material) and modelling (the addition of material, as clay), ...
and
architecture upright=1.45, alt=Plan d'exécution du second étage de l'hôtel de Brionne (dessin) De Cotte 2503c – Gallica 2011 (adjusted), Plan of the second floor (attic storey) of the Hôtel de Brionne in Paris – 1734. Architecture (Latin ''archi ...
, which found patrons among an urban elite.
Classical Sanskrit literature 300px, The 11th-century Sanskrit manuscript of the Devi Māhātmya on palm-leaf, Bihar or Nepal.">Nepal.html" ;"title="Bihar or Nepal">Bihar or Nepal. Sanskrit literature broadly comprises texts composed in the earliest attested descendant of th ...
flowered as well, and Indian science,
astronomy Astronomy (from el, ἀστρονομία, literally meaning the science that studies the laws of the stars) is a natural science that studies astronomical object, celestial objects and celestial event, phenomena. It uses mathematics, phys ...
,
medicine Medicine is the science Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understanding of someone or something, such as facts ( descriptive knowledge), skills (proced ...

medicine
, and
mathematics Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers (arithmetic and number theory), formulas and related structures (algebra), shapes and spaces in which they are contained (geometry), and quantities and their changes (cal ...
made significant advances.


Medieval India

The Indian early medieval age, from , is defined by regional kingdoms and cultural diversity. When
Harsha Harshavardhana (c. 590–647 CE) was an Indian emperor who ruled North India North India is a loosely defined region consisting of the northern part of India India, officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in Sou ...

Harsha
of
Kannauj Kannauj ( Hindustani pronunciation: ənːɔːd͡ʒ is a city, administrative headquarters and a municipal board or Nagar Palika Parishad in Kannauj district in the Indian States and territories of India, state of Uttar Pradesh. The city's nam ...

Kannauj
, who ruled much of the Indo-Gangetic Plain from , attempted to expand southwards, he was defeated by the
Chalukya The Chalukya dynasty () was a Classical Indian dynasty that ruled large parts of south India, southern and central India between the 6th and the 12th centuries. During this period, they ruled as three related yet individual dynasties. The ear ...
ruler of the Deccan. When his successor attempted to expand eastwards, he was defeated by the
PalaPala may refer to: Places Chad *Pala, Chad, the capital of the region of Mayo-Kebbi Ouest Estonia *Pala, Kose Parish, village in Kose Parish, Harju County *Pala, Kuusalu Parish, village in Kuusalu Parish, Harju County *Pala, Järva County, villa ...
king of
Bengal Bengal (; Bengali language, Bengali: ', ) is a geopolitical, cultural and historical region in South Asia, specifically in the eastern part of the Indian subcontinent at the apex of the Bay of Bengal, predominantly covering present-day Bang ...

Bengal
. When the Chalukyas attempted to expand southwards, they were defeated by the
Pallava The Pallava dynasty was an Indian dynasty that existed from 275 CE to 897 CE, ruling a portion of southern India South India is a region located in the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hin ...
s from farther south, who in turn were opposed by the
Pandyas The Pandya dynasty, also known as the Pandyas of Madurai, was a dynasty of south India, one of the three famous List of Tamil monarchs, Tamil lineages, the other two being the Chola dynasty, Chola and the Chera dynasty, Chera.Subbarayalu, Y. ...
and the
Cholas The Chola dynasty ( ta, சோழ வம்சம்) was a Tamil Tamil may refer to: * Tamils, an ethnic group native to India, Sri Lanka and some other parts of Asia **Sri Lankan Tamils, Tamil people native to Sri Lanka **Tamil Malaysian ...

Cholas
from still farther south. No ruler of this period was able to create an empire and consistently control lands much beyond their core region. During this time, pastoral peoples, whose land had been cleared to make way for the growing agricultural economy, were accommodated within caste society, as were new non-traditional ruling classes. The caste system consequently began to show regional differences. In the 6th and 7th centuries, the first were created in the Tamil language. They were imitated all over India and led to both the resurgence of Hinduism and the development of all . Indian royalty, big and small, and the temples they patronised drew citizens in great numbers to the capital cities, which became economic hubs as well. Temple towns of various sizes began to appear everywhere as India underwent another urbanisation. By the 8th and 9th centuries, the effects were felt in South-East Asia, as South Indian culture and political systems were exported to lands that became part of modern-day
Myanmar Myanmar, ); UK pronunciations: US pronunciations incl. . Note: Wikipedia's IPA conventions require indicating /r/ even in British English although only some British English speakers pronounce r at the end of syllables. As John C. Wells, John ...

Myanmar
,
Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country in Southeast Asia. It is located at the centre of the Mainland Southeast Asia, Indochinese Peninsula, spanning , wi ...

Thailand
,
Laos , national_anthem = "Pheng Xat Lao") , image_map = , map_caption = , capital = Vientiane , coordinates = , largest_city = capital , official_languages = Lao language, Lao , recognised_languages = , languages_type = Spoken langua ...

Laos
,
Cambodia Cambodia (; also Kampuchea ; km, កម្ពុជា, ), officially the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a country located in the southern portion of the Indochinese peninsula in Southeast Asia. It is in area, bordered by Thailand to Cambodia–T ...

Cambodia
,
Vietnam Vietnam ( vi, Việt Nam, ), officially the Socialist Republic of Vietnam,, group="n" is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the ...

Vietnam
,
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
,
Malaysia Malaysia ( ; ) is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographical southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions ...

Malaysia
, and
Java Java ( id, Jawa, ; jv, ꦗꦮ; su, ) is one of the Greater Sunda Islands in Indonesia. It is bordered by the Indian Ocean to the south and the Java Sea to the north. With a population of 147.7 million people, Java is the world's List of ...

Java
. Indian merchants, scholars, and sometimes armies were involved in this transmission; South-East Asians took the initiative as well, with many sojourning in Indian seminaries and translating Buddhist and Hindu texts into their languages. After the 10th century, Muslim Central Asian nomadic clans, using swift-horse cavalry and raising vast armies united by ethnicity and religion, repeatedly overran South Asia's north-western plains, leading eventually to the establishment of the Islamic
Delhi Sultanate The Delhi Sultanate was an Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see int ...
in 1206. The sultanate was to control much of North India and to make many forays into South India. Although at first disruptive for the Indian elites, the sultanate largely left its vast non-Muslim subject population to its own laws and customs. By repeatedly repulsing Mongol raiders in the 13th century, the sultanate saved India from the devastation visited on West and Central Asia, setting the scene for centuries of
migration Migration, migratory, or migrate may refer to: Human migration * Human migration, physical movement by humans from one region to another ** International migration, when peoples cross state boundaries and stay in the host state for some minimum len ...

migration
of fleeing soldiers, learned men, mystics, traders, artists, and artisans from that region into the subcontinent, thereby creating a syncretic Indo-Islamic culture in the north. The sultanate's raiding and weakening of the regional kingdoms of South India paved the way for the indigenous
Vijayanagara Empire The Vijayanagara Empire, also called Karnata Kingdom, was based in the Deccan Plateau region in South India South India is a region located in the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ...

Vijayanagara Empire
. Embracing a strong
Shaivite Shaivism (; Sanskrit Sanskrit (, attributively , ''saṃskṛta-'', nominalization, nominally , ''saṃskṛtam'') is a classical language of South Asia belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European language ...
tradition and building upon the military technology of the sultanate, the empire came to control much of peninsular India, and was to influence South Indian society for long afterwards.


Early modern India

In the early 16th century, northern India, then under mainly Muslim rulers, fell again to the superior mobility and firepower of a new generation of Central Asian warriors. The resulting Mughal Empire did not stamp out the local societies it came to rule. Instead, it balanced and pacified them through new administrative practices and diverse and inclusive ruling elites, leading to more systematic, centralised, and uniform rule. Eschewing tribal bonds and Islamic identity, especially under
Akbar Abu'l-Fath Jalal-ud-din Muhammad Akbar (Persian Persian may refer to: * People and things from Iran, historically called ''Persia'' in the English language ** Persians, Persian people, the majority ethnic group in Iran, not to be conflated ...

Akbar
, the Mughals united their far-flung realms through loyalty, expressed through a Persianised culture, to an emperor who had near-divine status. The Mughal state's economic policies, deriving most revenues from agriculture and mandating that taxes be paid in the well-regulated silver currency, caused peasants and artisans to enter larger markets. The relative peace maintained by the empire during much of the 17th century was a factor in India's economic expansion, resulting in greater patronage of
painting Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, after application to a substrate in a thin layer, converts to a solid film. It is most commonly used to protect, ...

painting
, literary forms, textiles, and
architecture upright=1.45, alt=Plan d'exécution du second étage de l'hôtel de Brionne (dessin) De Cotte 2503c – Gallica 2011 (adjusted), Plan of the second floor (attic storey) of the Hôtel de Brionne in Paris – 1734. Architecture (Latin ''archi ...

architecture
. Newly coherent social groups in northern and western India, such as the
Marathas The Maratha caste are a Marathi clan originally formed in the earlier centuries from the amalgamation of families from the peasant (Kunbi), shepherd ( Dhangar), pastoral (Gavli, Gawli), blacksmith (Lohar), Sutar (carpenter), Bhandari caste, Bh ...

Marathas
, the
Rajputs Rajput (from Sanskrit ''raja-putra'', "son of a king") is a large multi-component cluster of castes, kin bodies, and local groups, sharing social status and ideology of genealogical descent originating from the Indian subcontinent. The term R ...

Rajputs
, and the
Sikhs Sikhs ( or ; pa, ਸਿੱਖ, ', ) are people who adhere to Sikhism, a monotheistic religion that originated in the late 15th century '' by Francisco Pradilla Ortiz, 1882: Muhammad XII surrenders to Ferdinand and Isabella The 15th ...

Sikhs
, gained military and governing ambitions during Mughal rule, which, through collaboration or adversity, gave them both recognition and military experience. Expanding commerce during Mughal rule gave rise to new Indian commercial and political elites along the coasts of southern and eastern India. As the empire disintegrated, many among these elites were able to seek and control their own affairs. By the early 18th century, with the lines between commercial and political dominance being increasingly blurred, a number of European trading companies, including the English
East India Company The East India Company (EIC), also known as the Honourable East India Company (HEIC), East India Trading Company (EITC), the English East India Company or (after 1707) the British East India Company, and informally known as John Company, Com ...
, had established coastal outposts. The East India Company's control of the seas, greater resources, and more advanced military training and technology led it to increasingly assert its military strength and caused it to become attractive to a portion of the Indian elite; these factors were crucial in allowing the company to gain control over the Bengal region by 1765 and sideline the other European companies. Its further access to the riches of Bengal and the subsequent increased strength and size of its army enabled it to annexe or subdue most of India by the 1820s. India was then no longer exporting manufactured goods as it long had, but was instead supplying the
British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states. ...

British Empire
with raw materials. Many historians consider this to be the onset of India's colonial period. By this time, with its economic power severely curtailed by the British parliament and having effectively been made an arm of British administration, the company began more consciously to enter non-economic arenas like education, social reform, and culture.


Modern India

Historians consider India's modern age to have begun sometime between 1848 and 1885. The appointment in 1848 of
Lord Dalhousie James Andrew Broun-Ramsay, 1st Marquess of Dalhousie (22 April 1812 – 19 December 1860), also known as Lord Dalhousie, styled Lord Ramsay until 1838 and known as The Earl of Dalhousie between 1838 and 1849, was a Scottish statesman and colo ...
as Governor General of the East India Company set the stage for changes essential to a modern state. These included the consolidation and demarcation of sovereignty, the surveillance of the population, and the education of citizens. Technological changes—among them, railways, canals, and the telegraph—were introduced not long after their introduction in
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of scienc ...

Europe
. However, disaffection with the company also grew during this time and set off the
Indian Rebellion of 1857 The Indian Rebellion of 1857 was a major, but ultimately unsuccessful, uprising in India in 1857–58 against the rule of the British East India Company, which functioned as a sovereign power on behalf of the British Crown. The rebellion ...

Indian Rebellion of 1857
. Fed by diverse resentments and perceptions, including invasive British-style social reforms, harsh land taxes, and summary treatment of some rich landowners and princes, the rebellion rocked many regions of northern and central India and shook the foundations of Company rule. Although the rebellion was suppressed by 1858, it led to the dissolution of the East India Company and the by the British government. Proclaiming a
unitary state A unitary state is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper ...
and a gradual but limited British-style parliamentary system, the new rulers also protected princes and landed gentry as a feudal safeguard against future unrest. In the decades following, public life gradually emerged all over India, leading eventually to the founding of the
Indian National Congress The Indian National Congress (often called the Congress Party or simply Congress, INC) is a political party in India with widespread roots. Founded in 1885, it was the first modern nationalist movement to emerge in the British Empire ...
in 1885. The rush of technology and the commercialisation of agriculture in the second half of the 19th century was marked by economic setbacks and many small farmers became dependent on the whims of far-away markets. There was an increase in the number of large-scale
famines A famine is a widespread scarcity of food Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for an organism In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ὀργανισμός, ''organismos'') is any individual con ...
, and, despite the risks of infrastructure development borne by Indian taxpayers, little industrial employment was generated for Indians. There were also salutary effects: commercial cropping, especially in the newly canalled Punjab, led to increased food production for internal consumption. The railway network provided critical famine relief, notably reduced the cost of moving goods, and helped nascent Indian-owned industry. After World War I, in which approximately one million Indians served, a new period began. It was marked by British reforms but also repressive legislation, by more strident Indian calls for self-rule, and by the beginnings of a
nonviolent Nonviolence is the personal practice of not causing harm to one's self and others under every condition. It may come from the belief that hurting people, animals and/or the environment is unnecessary to achieve an outcome and it may refer to a ge ...
movement of non-co-operation, of which
Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (; 2 October 1869 – 30 January 1948) was an India, Indian lawyer, Anti-colonial nationalism, anti-colonial nationalist, Quote: "... marks Gandhi as a hybrid cosmopolitan figure who transformed ... anti-colon ...

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi
would become the leader and enduring symbol. During the 1930s, slow legislative reform was enacted by the British; the Indian National Congress won victories in the resulting elections. The next decade was beset with crises: Indian participation in World War II, the Congress's final push for non-co-operation, and an upsurge of Muslim nationalism. All were capped by the advent of independence in 1947, but tempered by the
partition of India The partition of India was the division of British India The Provinces of India, earlier Presidencies of British India and still earlier, Presidency towns, were the administrative divisions of British governance in the Indian subcont ...

partition of India
into two states: India and Pakistan. Vital to India's self-image as an independent nation was its constitution, completed in 1950, which put in place a secular and democratic republic. It has remained a democracy with civil liberties, an active Supreme Court, and a largely independent press. Economic liberalisation, which began in the 1990s, has created a large urban middle class, transformed India into one of the world's fastest-growing economies, and increased its geopolitical clout. Indian movies, music, and spiritual teachings play an increasing role in global culture. Yet, India is also shaped by seemingly unyielding poverty, both rural and urban; by
religious Religion is a - of designated and practices, , s, s, , , , , or , that relates humanity to , , and elements; however, there is no scholarly consensus over what precisely constitutes a religion. Different religions may or may not contain v ...
and caste-related violence; by Maoist-inspired Naxalite insurgencies; and by separatism in Jammu and Kashmir and in Northeast India. It has unresolved territorial disputes with
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...

China
and with
Pakistan Pakistan, . Pronounced variably in English as , , , and . officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies by population, fifth-most populous country, with a popul ...
. India's sustained democratic freedoms are unique among the world's newer nations; however, in spite of its recent economic successes, freedom from want for its disadvantaged population remains a goal yet to be achieved.


Geography

India accounts for the bulk of the Indian subcontinent, lying atop the Indian tectonic plate, a part of the
Indo-Australian Plate The Indo-Australian Plate is a major tectonic plate that includes the continent of Australia and surrounding ocean The ocean (also the sea or the world ocean) is the body of salt water which covers approximately 71% of the surface of ...
. India's defining geological processes began 75 million years ago when the Indian Plate, then part of the southern supercontinent
Gondwana Gondwana () or Gondwanaland was a supercontinent In geology Geology (from the Ancient Greek γῆ, ''gē'' ("earth") and -λoγία, ''-logia'', ("study of", "discourse")) is an Earth science concerned with the solid Earth, the rock (ge ...

Gondwana
, began a north-eastward drift caused by
seafloor spreading Seafloor spreading is a process that occurs at mid-ocean ridge A mid-ocean ridge (MOR) is a seafloor mountain system formed by plate tectonics File:Earth cutaway schematic-en.svg, upright=1.35, Diagram of the internal layering of Earth sho ...
to its south-west, and later, south and south-east. Simultaneously, the vast Tethyan
oceanic crust The oceanic crust is the uppermost layer of the oceanic portion of the tectonic plates This is a list of tectonic plates on Earth's surface. Tectonic plates are pieces of Earth's crust 350px, Plates in the crust of Earth Earth's crust i ...
, to its northeast, began to
subduct Subduction is a geological process in which the oceanic lithosphere is Geochemical cycle, recycled into the Earth's mantle at convergent boundary, convergent boundaries. Where the oceanic lithosphere of a tectonic plate converges with the less de ...

subduct
under the
Eurasian Plate The Eurasian Plate is a tectonic plate This is a list of tectonic plates on Earth's surface. Tectonic plates are pieces of Earth's crust and uppermost mantle, together referred to as the lithosphere. The plates are around thick and consist ...
. These dual processes, driven by convection in the Earth's
mantle Mantle may refer to: *Mantle (geology) A mantle is a layer inside a planetary body A planet is an astronomical body Astronomy (from el, ἀστρονομία, literally meaning the science that studies the laws of the stars) is a n ...
, both created the
Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's five ocean The ocean (also the or the world ocean) is the body of that covers approximately 70.8% of the surface of and contains 97% of . Another definition is "any of the large ...

Indian Ocean
and caused the Indian
continental crust 350px, The thickness of Crust (geology)#Earth's crust, Earth's crust (km) Continental crust is the layer of Igneous rock, igneous, Sedimentary rock, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocks that forms the geological continents and the areas of shallo ...
eventually to under-thrust Eurasia and to uplift the
Himalayas The Himalayas, or Himalaya (; Sanskrit Sanskrit (; attributively , ; nominalization, nominally , , ) is a classical language of South Asia that belongs to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It ar ...

Himalayas
. Immediately south of the emerging Himalayas, plate movement created a vast
trough Trough may refer to: In science * Trough (geology), a long depression less steep than a trench * Trough (meteorology), an elongated region of low atmospheric pressure * Trough (physics), the lowest point on a wave * Trough level (medicine), the lo ...
that rapidly filled with river-borne sediment and now constitutes the
Indo-Gangetic Plain#REDIRECT Indo-Gangetic Plain Image:India-Pakistan Borderlands at Night.JPG, 250px, Clusters of yellow lights on the Indo-Gangetic Plain reveal numerous cities large and small in this astronaut photograph of northern India and northern Pakistan, ...

Indo-Gangetic Plain
. Cut off from the plain by the ancient
Aravalli Range The Aravalli Range (also spelled ''Aravali'') is a mountain range in Northwestern India North India is a loosely defined region consisting of the northern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), i ...

Aravalli Range
lies the
Thar Desert The Thar Desert, also known as the Great Indian Desert, is a large arid region A region is arid when it is characterized by a severe lack of available water, to the extent of hindering or preventing the growth and development Development ...

Thar Desert
. The original Indian Plate survives as
peninsular India South India is a region located in the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, second-most populous coun ...

peninsular India
, the oldest and geologically most stable part of India. It extends as far north as the
Satpura The Satpura Range is a range of hills in central India. The range rises in eastern Gujarat state running east through the border of Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh to the east till Chhattisgarh. The range parallels the Vindhya Range to the north, a ...
and
Vindhya The Vindhya Range (also known as Vindhyachal) () is a complex, discontinuous Mountain chain, chain of mountain ridges, hill ranges, highlands and plateau escarpments in west-central India. Technically, the Vindhyas do not form a single mountain ...
ranges in central India. These parallel chains run from the Arabian Sea coast in Gujarat in the west to the coal-rich
Chota Nagpur Plateau The Chota Nagpur Plateau is a plateau In geology Geology (from the Ancient Greek γῆ, ''gē'' ("earth") and -λoγία, ''-logia'', ("study of", "discourse")) is an Earth science concerned with the solid Earth, the rock (geology), rocks ...
in Jharkhand in the east. To the south, the remaining peninsular landmass, the Deccan Plateau, is flanked on the west and east by coastal ranges known as the
Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town in the US *Western Creek, Tasmania, a locality in Australia *Western Junction, Tasmania, a locality in Australia *Western world, countries that ide ...

Western
and
Eastern Ghats The Eastern Ghats are a discontinuous range of mountains along India's eastern coast. The Eastern Ghats pass through Odisha, Andhra Pradesh to Tamil Nadu in the south passing some parts of Karnataka as well as Telangana. They are eroded and cut ...

Eastern Ghats
; the plateau contains the country's oldest rock formations, some over one billion years old. Constituted in such fashion, India lies to the north of the equator between 6° 44′ and 35° 30′ north latitude and 68° 7′ and 97° 25′ east longitude. India's coastline measures in length; of this distance, belong to peninsular India and to the Andaman, Nicobar, and Lakshadweep island chains. According to the Indian naval hydrographic charts, the mainland coastline consists of the following: 43% sandy beaches; 11% rocky shores, including cliffs; and 46%
mudflat Mudflats or mud flats, also known as tidal flats or, in Ireland, slob or slobs, are coastal wetland A wetland is a distinct ecosystem that is flooded by water, either permanently or seasonally, where oxygen-free processes prevail. The primary ...
s or marshy shores. Major Himalayan-origin rivers that substantially flow through India include the
Ganges The Ganges ( ) (in India: Ganga ( ); in Bangladesh: Padma River, Padma ( )). "The Ganges Basin, known in India as the Ganga and in Bangladesh as the Padma, is an international river to which India, Bangladesh, Nepal and China are the riparian ...

Ganges
and the
Brahmaputra The Brahmaputra (), called Yarlung Tsangpo The Yarlung Tsangpo, also called Yarlung Zangbo () or Yalu Zangbu () is the upper stream of the Brahmaputra River The Brahmaputra (), called Yarlung Tsangpo in Tibet, Siang/Dihang River in Aruna ...

Brahmaputra
, both of which drain into the
Bay of Bengal The Bay of Bengal is the northeastern part of the Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's five oceanic divisions, covering or 19.8% of the water on Earth's surface. It is bounded by Asia to the north, Africa to th ...

Bay of Bengal
.{{sfn, Dikshit & Schwartzberg, p = 15 Important tributaries of the Ganges include the
Yamuna The Yamuna (Hindustani language, Hindustani: ) is the second-largest tributary river of the Ganga by discharge and the longest tributary in List of major rivers of India, India. Originating from the Yamunotri Glacier at a height of on the ...

Yamuna
and the
Kosi KOSI (101.1 FM) is a commercial Commercial may refer to: * a dose of advertising conveyed through media (such as - for example - radio or television) ** Radio advertisement ** Television advertisement * (adjective for:) commerce, a system of vol ...
; the latter's extremely low gradient, caused by long-term silt deposition, leads to severe floods and course changes.{{sfn, Duff, 1993, p = 353{{citation, last1=Basu, first1=Mahua, last2=SJ, first2=Xavier Savarimuthu, title=Fundamentals of Environmental Studies, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=nXmLDgAAQBAJ&pg=PA78 , date=2017, publisher=
Cambridge University Press Cambridge University Press (CUP) is the publishing business of the University of Cambridge , mottoeng = Literal: From here, light and sacred draughts. Non literal: From this place, we gain enlightenment and precious knowled ...
, isbn=978-1-316-87051-8, page=78
Major peninsular rivers, whose steeper gradients prevent their waters from flooding, include the
Godavari#REDIRECT Godavari River The Godavari is India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, second-most populous country, the List of ...

Godavari
, the
Mahanadi The Mahanadi is a major river in East Central India. It drains an area of around and has a total length of . Mahanadi is also known for the Hirakud Dam. The river flows through the states of Chhattisgarh and Odisha and finally merged with Bay of ...

Mahanadi
, the
Kaveri The Kaveri (also known as Cauvery, the name) is an Indian river flowing through the states of and . In Ancient times, It was also called as ''Ponni'' (the golden maid- as the Cauvery is sometimes called, in reference to the fine silt it dep ...

Kaveri
, and the
Krishna Krishna (, ; sa, कृष्ण, ) is a major deity A deity or god is a supernatural being considered divinity, divine or sacred. The ''Oxford Dictionary of English'' defines deity as a God (male deity), god or goddess (in a polythei ...

Krishna
, which also drain into the Bay of Bengal;{{sfn, Dikshit & Schwartzberg, p = 16 and the
Narmada The Narmada River, also called the Reva and previously also known as ''Narbada'' or anglicised as ''Nerbudda'', is the 5th longest river and overall longest west-flowing river in India, and largest flowing river of the state of Madhya Pradesh ...

Narmada
and the
Tapti The Tapti River (or Tapi) is a river in central India located to the south of the Narmada river which flows westwards before draining into the Arabian Sea. The river has a length of around 700km and flows through the states of Maharashtra, Guja ...
, which drain into the
Arabian Sea The Arabian Sea ( ar, بحر العرب ''Bahr al-Arab'') is a region of the northern Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's oceanic divisions, covering or 19.8% of the water Water is an Inorganic co ...
.{{sfn, Dikshit & Schwartzberg, p = 17 Coastal features include the marshy
Rann of Kutch The Rann of Kutch ( Gujarati: કચ્છનું રણ) is a large area of salt marsh A salt marsh or saltmarsh, also known as a coastal salt marsh or a tidal marsh, is a coastal ecosystem in the upper coast The coast, also known as ...

Rann of Kutch
of western India and the alluvial
Sundarbans The Sundarbans is a mangrove A mangrove is a shrub or small tree that grows in coastal saline or brackish water. The term is also used for tropical coastal vegetation consisting of such species. Mangroves occur worldwide in the tropics ...

Sundarbans
delta of eastern India; the latter is shared with Bangladesh.{{sfn, Dikshit & Schwartzberg, p = 12 India has two
archipelago An archipelago ( ), sometimes called an island group or island chain, is a chain, cluster or collection of island An island (or isle) is an isolated piece of habitat that is surrounded by a dramatically different habitat, such as ...

archipelago
s: the
Lakshadweep Lakshadweep (), also known as Laccadives (), is a union territory #REDIRECT Union territory#REDIRECT Union territory A union territory ( hi, script=latn, kendraśāsit pradeś, , centrally administered province) is a type of administrative d ...

Lakshadweep
, off India's south-western coast; and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, a volcanic chain in the
Andaman Sea The Andaman Sea (historically also known as the Burma Sea) is a marginal sea of northeastern Indian Ocean bounded by the coastlines of Myanmar and Thailand along the Gulf of Martaban and west side of the Malay Peninsula, and separated from the B ...

Andaman Sea
.{{sfn, Dikshit & Schwartzberg, p = 13 The is strongly influenced by the Himalayas and the Thar Desert, both of which drive the economically and culturally pivotal summer and winter
monsoon A monsoon () is traditionally a seasonal reversing wind accompanied by corresponding changes in precipitation In meteorology Meteorology is a branch of the (which include and ), with a major focus on . The study of meteorology ...

monsoon
s.{{sfn, Chang, 1967, pp = 391–394 The Himalayas prevent cold Central Asian
katabatic wind A katabatic wind (named from the word κατάβασις ', meaning "descending") is a drainage wind, a that carries high-density air from a higher elevation down a slope under the force of gravity. Such winds are sometimes also called fall w ...
s from blowing in, keeping the bulk of the Indian subcontinent warmer than most locations at similar latitudes.{{sfn, Posey, 1994, p = 118{{sfn, Wolpert, 2003, p = 4 The Thar Desert plays a crucial role in attracting the moisture-laden south-west summer monsoon winds that, between June and October, provide the majority of India's rainfall.{{sfn, Chang, 1967, pp = 391–394 Four major climatic groupings predominate in India: tropical wet, Climate of India#Tropical dry, tropical dry, Climate of India#Subtropical humid, subtropical humid, and Climate of India#Mountain, montane.{{sfn, Heitzman, Worden, 1996, p = 97 Temperatures in India have risen by {{Convert, 0.7, C-change, 1, abbr=on between 1901 and 2018. Climate change in India is often thought to be the cause. The Retreat of glaciers since 1850, retreat of Himalayan glaciers has adversely affected the Volumetric flow rate, flow rate of the major Himalayan rivers, including the
Ganges The Ganges ( ) (in India: Ganga ( ); in Bangladesh: Padma River, Padma ( )). "The Ganges Basin, known in India as the Ganga and in Bangladesh as the Padma, is an international river to which India, Bangladesh, Nepal and China are the riparian ...

Ganges
and the Brahmaputra.{{Cite web, last1=Sethi, first1=Nitin, title=Global warming: Mumbai to face the heat, url=https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/global-warming-mumbai-to-face-the-heat/articleshow/1556662.cms, date=2007-02-03, access-date=2021-03-11, website=The Times of India, language=en According to some current projections, the number and severity of droughts in India will have markedly increased by the end of the present century.


Biodiversity

{{Main, Forestry in India, Wildlife of India {{multiple image , perrow = 2/1 , total_width = 360 , image1 = India Vegetation Features IGI 1909 Atlas.jpg , caption1 = A 1909 map showing India's forests, bush and small wood, cultivated lands, steppe, and desert. , image2 = 2010 India forest cover distribution map for its States and Union Territories.svg , caption2 = A 2010 map showing India's forest cover averaged out for each state. India is a megadiverse country, a term employed for 17 countries which display high biological diversity and contain many species exclusively indigenous (ecology), indigenous, or endemic, to them. India is a habitat for 8.6% of all mammal species, 13.7% of bird species, 7.9% of reptile species, 6% of amphibian species, 12.2% of fish species, and 6.0% of all flowering plant species.{{sfn, Zoological Survey of India, 2012, p = 1{{sfn, Puri Fully a third of Indian plant species are endemic.{{sfn, Basak, 1983, p = 24 India also contains four of the world's 34 biodiversity hotspots, or regions that display significant habitat loss in the presence of high endemism.{{efn, A biodiversity hotspot is a biogeography, biogeographical region which has more than 1,500 vascular plant species, but less than 30% of its primary habitat.{{citation, last1=Venkataraman, first1=Krishnamoorthy, last2=Sivaperuman, first2=Chandrakasan , editor=Sivaperuman, Chandrakasan , editor2=Venkataraman, Krishnamoorthy , title=Indian Hotspots: Vertebrate Faunal Diversity, Conservation and Management, chapter-url=https://books.google.com/books?id=8kFKDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA5, year=2018, publisher=Springer Publishing, Springer, isbn=978-981-10-6605-4, page=5, chapter=Biodiversity Hotspots in India India's forest cover is {{convert, 99278, km2, sqmi, abbr=on, which is 21.67% of the country's total land area.{{Cite web, url=http://www.frienvis.nic.in/Database/Forest-Cover-in-States-UTs-2019_2478.aspx, title=Forest Cover in States/UTs in India in 2019, publisher=Forest Research Institute (India), Forest Research Institute via National Informatics Centre, access-date=October 16, 2021 It can be subdivided further into broad categories of ''canopy density'', or the proportion of the area of a forest covered by its tree canopy.{{citation, last=Jha, first=Raghbendra, title=Facets of India's Economy and Her Society Volume II: Current State and Future Prospects, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=9n9SDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA198, year=2018, publisher=Springer Publishing, Springer, isbn=978-1-349-95342-4, page=198 ''Very dense forest'', whose ''canopy density'' is greater than 70%, occupies 3.02% of India's land area. It predominates in the tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forest, tropical moist forest of the Andaman Islands, the Western Ghats, and Northeast India.{{sfn, Tritsch, 2001 ''Moderately dense forest'', whose canopy density is between 40% and 70%, occupies 9.39% of India's land area. It predominates in the temperate coniferous forest of the Himalayas, the moist deciduous ''Shorea robusta, sal'' forest of eastern India, and the dry deciduous teak forest of central and southern India.{{sfn, Tritsch, 2001 ''Open forest'', whose canopy density is between 10% and 40%, occupies 9.26% of India's land area, and predominates in the Acacia nilotica, babul-dominated deserts and xeric shrublands, thorn forest of the central Deccan Plateau and the western Gangetic plain.{{sfn, Tritsch, 2001 Among the Indian subcontinent's notable indigenous trees are the astringent ''Azadirachta indica'', or ''neem'', which is widely used in rural Indian herbal medicine,{{citation, last=Goyal, first=Anupam, title=The WTO and International Environmental Law: Towards Conciliation, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=UTGQAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA295, year=2006, publisher=Oxford University Press, isbn=978-0-19-567710-2, page=295 Quote: "The Indian government successfully argued that the medicinal ''neem'' tree is part of traditional Indian knowledge. (page 295)" and the luxuriant ''Ficus religiosa'', or ''peepul'',{{citation, last=Hughes, first=Julie E., title=Animal Kingdoms, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=RL8qWNmpkc0C&pg=PT106, year=2013, publisher=Harvard University Press, isbn=978-0-674-07480-4, page=106, quote=At same time, the leafy pipal trees and comparative abundance that marked the Mewari landscape fostered refinements unattainable in other lands. which is displayed on the ancient seals of
Mohenjo-daro Mohenjo-daro (; sd, موئن جو دڙو'', ''meaning 'Mound of the Dead Men';
,{{citation, last1=Ameri, first1=Marta, last2=Costello, first2=Sarah Kielt, last3=Jamison, first3=Gregg; Scott, Sarah Jarmer, title=Seals and Sealing in the Ancient World: Case Studies from the Near East, Egypt, the Aegean, and South Asia, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=SklVDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA156, year=2018, publisher=
Cambridge University Press Cambridge University Press (CUP) is the publishing business of the University of Cambridge , mottoeng = Literal: From here, light and sacred draughts. Non literal: From this place, we gain enlightenment and precious knowled ...
, isbn=978-1-108-17351-3, pages=156–157 Quote: "The last of the centaurs has the long, wavy, horizontal horns of a markhor, a human face, a heavy-set body that appears bovine, and a goat tail ... This figure is often depicted by itself, but it is also consistently represented in scenes that seem to reflect the adoration of a figure in a pipal tree or arbour and which may be termed ritual. These include fully detailed scenes like that visible in the large 'divine adoration' seal from Mohenjo-daro."
and under which Gautama Buddha, the Buddha is recorded in the Pali canon to have sought enlightenment.{{citation, author=Paul Gwynne, title=World Religions in Practice: A Comparative Introduction, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=tdsRKc_knZoC&pg=RA5-PT195, year=2011, publisher=John Wiley & Sons, isbn=978-1-4443-6005-9, page=358 Quote: "The tree under which Sakyamuni became the Buddha is a peepal tree (''Ficus religiosa'')." Many Indian species have descended from those of
Gondwana Gondwana () or Gondwanaland was a supercontinent In geology Geology (from the Ancient Greek γῆ, ''gē'' ("earth") and -λoγία, ''-logia'', ("study of", "discourse")) is an Earth science concerned with the solid Earth, the rock (ge ...

Gondwana
, the southern supercontinent from which India separated more than 100 million years ago.{{sfn, Crame, Owen, 2002, p = 142 India's subsequent collision with Eurasia set off a mass exchange of species. However, Deccan Traps, volcanism and climatic changes later caused the extinction of many endemic Indian forms.{{sfn, Karanth, 2006 Still later, mammals entered India from Asia through two zoogeographical passes flanking the Himalayas.{{sfn, Tritsch, 2001 This had the effect of lowering endemism among India's mammals, which stands at 12.6%, contrasting with 45.8% among reptiles and 55.8% among amphibians.{{sfn, Puri Notable endemics are the vulnerable Nilgiri Langur, hooded leaf monkey{{cite web, first=Johann, last=Fischer, author-link=Johann Baptist Fischer, title=Semnopithecus johnii, url=https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=944270#null, publisher=ITIS, access-date=27 August 2018, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20180829072131/https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=944270#null, archive-date=29 August 2018, url-status=live and the threatened{{Cite journal , author = S.D. Biju , author2 = Sushil Dutta , author3 = M.S. Ravichandran Karthikeyan Vasudevan , author4 = S.P. Vijayakumar , author5 = Chelmala Srinivasulu , author6 = Gajanan Dasaramji Bhuddhe , title = Duttaphrynus beddomii , journal = The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species , volume = 2004 , page = e.T54584A86543952 , publisher = IUCN , date = 2004 , doi = 10.2305/IUCN.UK.2004.RLTS.T54584A11155448.en Duttaphrynus beddomii, Beddom's toad of the Western Ghats. {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220, image_style = border:none;, align = right , image1=Axis axis (Nagarhole, 2010).jpg, caption1=A Chital (''Axis axis'') stag attempts to browse in the Nagarhole National Park in a region covered by a ''moderately dense''{{efn, A forest cover is ''moderately dense'' if between 40% and 70% of its area is covered by its tree canopy. forest.{{sfn, Tritsch, 2001 India contains 172 World Conservation Union, IUCN-designated List of endangered animals in India, threatened animal species, or 2.9% of endangered forms.{{sfn, Mace, 1994, p = 4 These include the endangered Bengal tiger and the South Asian river dolphin, Ganges river dolphin. Critically endangered species include: the gharial, a crocodilian; the great Indian bustard; and the Indian white-rumped vulture, which has become nearly extinct by having ingested the carrion of diclofenac-treated cattle.{{citation, last1=Lovette, first1=Irby J., last2=Fitzpatrick, first2=John W., title=Handbook of Bird Biology, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=OGyQDAAAQBAJ&pg=PA599, year=2016, publisher=John Wiley & Sons, isbn=978-1-118-29105-4, page=599 The pervasive and ecologically devastating human encroachment of recent decades has critically endangered Indian wildlife. In response, the system of National parks of India, national parks and protected areas of India, protected areas, first established in 1935, was expanded substantially. In 1972, India enacted the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972, Wildlife Protection Act{{sfn, Ministry of Environments and Forests 1972 and Project Tiger to safeguard crucial wilderness; the Forest Conservation Act was enacted in 1980 and amendments added in 1988.{{sfn, Department of Environment and Forests, 1988 India hosts Wildlife sanctuaries of India, more than five hundred wildlife sanctuaries and Biosphere reserves of India, thirteen{{Nbspbiosphere reserves,{{sfn, Ministry of Environment and Forests four of which are part of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves; List of Ramsar Sites in India, twenty-five wetlands are registered under the Ramsar Convention.{{sfn, Secretariat of the Convention on Wetlands


Politics and government


Politics

{{Main, Politics of India {{multiple image , perrow = 1 , total_width = 220 , image_style = border:none; , align = right , image1 = Rajagopal speaking to 25,000 people, Janadesh 2007, India.jpg , caption1 = Social movements have long been a part of democracy in India. The picture shows a section of 25,000 landless people in the state of Madhya Pradesh listening to Rajagopal P. V. before their {{cvt, 350, km march, Janadesh 2007, from Gwalior to New Delhi to publicise their demand for further land reform in India.{{citation, last=Johnston, first=Hank, title=Social Movements, Nonviolent Resistance, and the State, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=hSiFDwAAQBAJ&pg=PT83, year=2019, publisher=Routledge, isbn=978-0-429-88566-2, page=83 , direction = , alt1 = India is the world's most populous
democracy Democracy ( gr, δημοκρατία, ''dēmokratiā'', from ''dēmos'' 'people' and ''kratos'' 'rule') is a form of government in which people, the people have the authority to deliberate and decide legislation ("direct democracy"), or to cho ...

democracy
.{{sfn, United Nations Population Division A parliamentary republic with a multi-party system,{{sfn, Burnell, Calvert, 1999, p = 125 it has eight{{Nbsprecognised List of recognised political parties in India#National, national parties, including the
Indian National Congress The Indian National Congress (often called the Congress Party or simply Congress, INC) is a political party in India with widespread roots. Founded in 1885, it was the first modern nationalist movement to emerge in the British Empire ...
and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and more than 40{{NbspList of recognised political parties in India#State, regional parties.{{sfn, Election Commission of India The Congress is considered centre-left in Indian political culture, and the BJP Right-wing politics, right-wing.{{sfn, Malik, Singh, 1992, pp=318–336{{sfn, BBC, 2012{{sfn, Banerjee, 2005, p=3118 For most of the period between 1950—when India first became a republic—and the late 1980s, the Congress held a majority in the parliament. Since then, however, it has increasingly shared the political stage with the BJP,{{sfn, Sarkar, 2007, p = 84 as well as with powerful regional parties which have often forced the creation of multi-party coalition governments at the centre.{{sfn, Chander, 2004, p = 117 In the Republic of India's first three general elections, in 1951, 1957, and 1962, the Jawaharlal Nehru-led Congress won easy victories. On Nehru's death in 1964, Lal Bahadur Shastri briefly became prime minister; he was succeeded, after his own unexpected death in 1966, by Nehru's daughter Indira Gandhi, who went on to lead the Congress to election victories in 1967 and 1971. Following public discontent with the The Emergency (India), state of emergency she declared in 1975, the Congress was voted out of power in 1977; the then-new Janata Party, which had opposed the emergency, was voted in. Its government lasted just over two years. Voted back into power in 1980, the Congress saw a change in leadership in 1984, when Indira Gandhi was assassinated; she was succeeded by her son Rajiv Gandhi, who won an easy victory in the general elections later that year. The Congress was voted out again in 1989 when a National Front (India), National Front coalition, led by the newly formed Janata Dal in alliance with the Communist Party of India (Marxist), Left Front, won the elections; that government too proved relatively short-lived, lasting just under two years.{{sfn, Bhambhri, 1992, pp = 118, 143 Elections were held again in 1991; no party won an absolute majority. The Congress, as the largest single party, was able to form a minority government led by P. V. Narasimha Rao. {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220, image_style = border:none;, align =left , image1=Barack Obama at Parliament of India in New Delhi addressing Joint session of both houses 2010.jpg, caption1=At the Parliament of India in New Delhi, US president Barack Obama is shown here addressing the Member of Parliament (India), members of Parliament of both houses, the lower, Lok Sabha, and the upper, Rajya Sabha, in a joint session, 8 November 2010. A two-year period of political turmoil followed the general election of 1996. Several short-lived alliances shared power at the centre. The BJP formed a government briefly in 1996; it was followed by two comparatively long-lasting United Front (India), United Front coalitions, which depended on external support. In 1998, the BJP was able to form a successful coalition, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA). Led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the NDA became the first non-Congress, coalition government to complete a five-year term.{{sfn, Dunleavy, Diwakar, Dunleavy, 2007 Again in the 2004 Indian general elections, no party won an absolute majority, but the Congress emerged as the largest single party, forming another successful coalition: the United Progressive Alliance (UPA). It had the support of left-leaning parties and MPs who opposed the BJP. The UPA returned to power in the 2009 Indian general election, 2009 general election with increased numbers, and it no longer required external support from Socialism in India, India's communist parties.{{sfn, Kulke, Rothermund, 2004, p = 384 That year, Manmohan Singh became the first prime minister since Jawaharlal Nehru in 1957 Indian general election, 1957 and 1962 Indian general election, 1962 to be re-elected to a consecutive five-year term.{{sfn, Business Standard, 2009 In the 2014 Indian general election, 2014 general election, the BJP became the first political party since 1984 to win a majority and govern without the support of other parties. The incumbent prime minister is Narendra Modi, a former Chief minister (India), chief minister of Gujarat. On 20 July 2017, Ram Nath Kovind was elected India's 14th president and took the oath of office on 25 July 2017.


Government

{{Main, Government of India, Constitution of India {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220, image_style = border:none;, align = right , image1=Rashtrapati Bhavan Wide New Delhi India.jpg, caption1=Rashtrapati Bhavan, the official residence of the President of India, was designed by British architects Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker for the Viceroy of India, and constructed between 1911 and 1931 during the British Raj.{{citation, last=Bremner, first=G. A., title=Architecture and Urbanism in the British Empire, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=mjRADQAAQBAJ&pg=PA117, year=2016, publisher=Oxford University Press, isbn=978-0-19-102232-6, page=117 India is a federation with a
parliamentary system A parliamentary system or parliamentary democracy is a system of democratic Democrat, Democrats, or Democratic may refer to: *A proponent of democracy Democracy ( gr, δημοκρατία, ''dēmokratiā'', from ''dēmos'' 'people' an ...
governed under the
Constitution of India The Constitution of India (IAST The International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration (IAST) is a transliteration scheme that allows the lossless romanisation Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the sci ...

Constitution of India
—the country's supreme legal document. It is a constitutional republic and representative democracy, in which "majority rule is tempered by minority rights protected by Law of India, law". Federalism in India defines the power distribution between the union and the States and territories of India, states. The Constitution of India, which came into effect on 26 January 1950,{{sfn, Pylee, 2003, a, p = 4 originally stated India to be a "Sovereignty, sovereign, liberal democracy, democratic republic;" this characterisation was amended in 1971 to "a sovereign, socialist, Secularism, secular, democratic republic".{{sfn, Dutt, 1998, p = 421 India's form of government, traditionally described as "quasi-federal" with a strong centre and weak states,{{sfn, Wheare, 1980, p = 28 has grown increasingly federal since the late 1990s as a result of political, economic, and social changes.{{sfn, Echeverri-Gent, 2002, pp = 19–20{{sfn, Sinha, 2004, p = 25 {{Infobox place symbols , region_type = National , title = National symbols of India, National symbols{{sfn, National Informatics Centre, 2005 , flag = Flag of India, Tiranga (Tricolour) , emblem = State Emblem of India, Sarnath Lion Capital , anthem = ''Jana Gana Mana'' , song = "Vande Mataram" , language = None{{cite news, last=Khan, first=Saeed, title=There's no national language in India: Gujarat High Court, url=http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Theres-no-national-language-in-India-Gujarat-High-Court/articleshow/5496231.cms, access-date=5 May 2014, newspaper=The Times of India, date=25 January 2010, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20140318040319/http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Theres-no-national-language-in-India-Gujarat-High-Court/articleshow/5496231.cms, archive-date=18 March 2014{{cite news, url=http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Learning-with-the-Times-India-doesnt-have-any-national-language/articleshow/5234047.cms, title=Learning with the Times: India doesn't have any 'national language', newspaper=The Times of India, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20171010085454/https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Learning-with-the-Times-India-doesnt-have-any-national-language/articleshow/5234047.cms, archive-date=10 October 2017, date=16 November 2009{{Cite news, url=http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/hindi-not-a-national-language-court/article94695.ece, title=Hindi, not a national language: Court, newspaper=Press Trust of India via The Hindu, access-date=23 December 2014, date=25 January 2010, location=Ahmedabad, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20140704084339/http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/hindi-not-a-national-language-court/article94695.ece, archive-date=4 July 2014 , currency = Indian rupee sign, ₹ (Indian rupee) , calendar = Indian national calendar, Saka , animal = {{plainlist, * Bengal tiger * South Asian river dolphin, River dolphin * Indian peafowl , flower = Nelumbo nucifera, Lotus , fruit = Mango , tree = Banyan , river =
Ganges The Ganges ( ) (in India: Ganga ( ); in Bangladesh: Padma River, Padma ( )). "The Ganges Basin, known in India as the Ganga and in Bangladesh as the Padma, is an international river to which India, Bangladesh, Nepal and China are the riparian ...

Ganges
The Government of India comprises three branches: * Executive (government), Executive: The President of India is the ceremonial head of state,{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, p = 31 who is elected indirectly for a five-year term by an Electoral College (India), electoral college comprising members of national and state legislatures.{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, p = 138{{sfn, Gledhill, 1970, p = 112 The Prime Minister of India is the head of government and exercises most executive (government), executive power.{{sfn, Sharma, 1950 Appointed by the president,{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, p = 162 the prime minister is by convention supported by the political party, party or political alliance having a majority of seats in the lower house of parliament.{{sfn, Sharma, 1950 The executive of the Indian government consists of the president, the Vice President of India, vice president, and the Union Council of Ministers—with the Cabinet (government), cabinet being its executive committee—headed by the prime minister. Any minister holding a portfolio must be a member of one of the houses of parliament.{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, p = 31 In the Indian parliamentary system, the executive is subordinate to the legislature; the prime minister and their council are directly responsible to the lower house of the parliament. Civil Services of India, Civil servants act as permanent executives and all decisions of the Executive (government), executive are implemented by them.{{sfn, Mathew, 2003, p = 524 * Legislature: The legislature of India is the bicameralism, bicameral Parliament of India, parliament. Operating under a Westminster system, Westminster-style parliamentary system, it comprises an upper house called the Rajya Sabha (Council of States) and a lower house called the Lok Sabha (House of the People).{{sfn, Gledhill, 1970, p = 127 The Rajya Sabha is a permanent body of 245{{Nbspmembers who serve staggered six-year{{Nbspterms.{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, p = 161 Most are elected indirectly by the States and union territories of India, state and union territorial legislatures in numbers proportional to their state's share of the national population.{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, p = 162 All but two of the Lok Sabha's 545{{Nbspmembers are elected directly by popular vote; they represent Single-member constituency, single-member constituencies for five-year{{Nbspterms.{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, p = 143 Two seats of parliament, reserved for Anglo-Indian in the article 331, have been scrapped. * Judiciary: India has a three-tier{{Nbspunitary Judicial independence, independent judiciary{{sfn, Neuborne, 2003, p = 478 comprising the Supreme Court of India, supreme court, headed by the Chief Justice of India, 25{{NbspHigh courts of India, high courts, and a large number of trial courts.{{sfn, Neuborne, 2003, p = 478 The supreme court has original jurisdiction over cases involving Fundamental rights in India, fundamental rights and over disputes between states and the centre and has appellate jurisdiction over the high courts.{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, pp = 238, 255 It has the power to both strike down union or state laws which contravene the constitution,{{sfn, Sripati, 1998, pp = 423–424 and invalidate any government action it deems unconstitutional.{{sfn, Pylee, 2003, b, p = 314


Administrative divisions

{{Main, Administrative divisions of India {{See also, Political integration of India India is a federal union comprising 28 States and union territories of India, states and 8 Union territory, union territories (listed below as 1{{ndash28 and A{{ndashH, respectively).{{sfn, Library of Congress, 2004 All states, as well as the union territories of Jammu and Kashmir (union territory), Jammu and Kashmir, Puducherry (union territory), Puducherry and the National Capital Territory of Delhi, have elected legislatures and governments following the Westminster system of governance. The remaining five union territories are directly ruled by the central government through appointed administrators. In 1956, under the States Reorganisation Act, 1956, States Reorganisation Act, states were reorganised on a linguistic basis.{{sfn, Sharma, 2007, p = 49 There are over a quarter of a million local government bodies at city, town, block, district and village levels. {{Indian states and territories image map, image-width=380 {{columns-list , colwidth=20em, # Andhra Pradesh # Arunachal Pradesh # Assam # Bihar # Chhattisgarh # Goa # Gujarat # Haryana # Himachal Pradesh # Jharkhand # Karnataka # Kerala # Madhya Pradesh # Maharashtra # Manipur # Meghalaya # Mizoram # Nagaland # Odisha # Punjab, India, Punjab # Rajasthan # Sikkim # Tamil Nadu # Telangana # Tripura # Uttar Pradesh # Uttarakhand # West Bengal {{ordered list , type=upper-alpha ,
Andaman and Nicobar Islands Andaman and Nicobar Islands is a union territory of India consisting of 572 islands, of which 38 are inhabited, at the juncture of the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea. The territory is about north of Aceh in Indonesia and separated from Thai ...

Andaman and Nicobar Islands
, Chandigarh , Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu , Jammu and Kashmir (union territory), Jammu and Kashmir , Ladakh ,
Lakshadweep Lakshadweep (), also known as Laccadives (), is a union territory #REDIRECT Union territory#REDIRECT Union territory A union territory ( hi, script=latn, kendraśāsit pradeś, , centrally administered province) is a type of administrative d ...

Lakshadweep
, Delhi, National Capital Territory of Delhi , Puducherry (union territory), Puducherry {{clear


Foreign, economic and strategic relations

{{Main, Foreign relations of India, Indian Armed Forces {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220 , image_style = border:none; , align = left , image1=Jawaharlal Nehru, Nasser and Tito at the Conference of Non-Aligned Nations held in Belgrade.jpg, caption1=During the 1950s and 60s, India played a pivotal role in the Non-Aligned Movement.{{cite book, last=Dinkel, first=Jürgen, title=The Non-Aligned Movement: Genesis, Organization and Politics (1927–1992), url=https://books.google.com/books?id=YqOODwAAQBAJ, date=3 December 2018, publisher=Brill Publishers, BRILL, isbn=978-90-04-33613-1, pages=92–93 From left to right: Gamal Abdel Nasser of United Arab Republic (now Egypt), Josip Broz Tito of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Yugoslavia and Jawaharlal Nehru in Belgrade, September 1961. In the 1950s, India strongly supported decolonisation in Africa and Asia and India and the Non-Aligned Movement, played a leading role in the Non-Aligned Movement.{{sfn, Rothermund, 2000, pp = 48, 227 After initially cordial relations with neighbouring China, India went to Sino-Indian War, war with China in 1962, and was widely thought to have been humiliated.*{{citation, last=Guyot-Rechard, first=Berenice, title=Shadow States: India, China and the Himalayas, 1910–1962, publisher=Cambridge University Press, page=235, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=FbktDQAAQBAJ&pg=PA235, year=2017, isbn=9781107176799, quote= By invading NEFA, the PRC did not just aim to force a humiliated India to recognise its possession of the Aksai Chin. It also hoped to get, once and for all, the upper hand in their shadowing competition. *{{citation, last=Chubb, first=Andrew, chapter=The Sino-Indian Border Crisis: Chinese Perceptions of Indian Nationalism, title=Crisis, editor1-last=Golley, editor1-first=Jane, editor2-last=Jaivan, editor2-first=Linda, editor3-last=Strange, editor3-first=Sharon, publisher=Australian National University Press, year=2021, pages=231–232, isbn=9781760464394, chapter-url=https://books.google.com/books?id=D1crEAAAQBAJ&pg=PA230, quote=The ensuing cycle of escalation culminated in the 1962 Sino-Indian border war in which Mao Zedong’s troops overran almost the entire state of Arunachal Pradesh in the eastern sector before unilaterally withdrawing, as if to underline the insult; most of the war’s several thousand casualties were Indian. The PLA’s decisive victories in the 1962 war not only humiliated the Indian Army, they also entrenched a status quo in Ladakh that was highly unfavourable for India, in which China controls almost all of the disputed territory. A nationalistic press and commentariat have kept 1962 vivid in India’s popular consciousness. *{{citation, last=Lintner, first=Bertil, title=China's India War: Collision Course on the Roof of the World, publisher=Oxford University Press, year=2018, isbn=978-0-19-909163-8, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=-L9DDwAAQBAJ&pg=PT106, quote= And that became a reality after the victory over India in 1962. Two years later, Nehru died, humiliated by the Chinese, a broken man. Brigadier Dalvi noted this in his account of the 1962 War and its aftermath, ‘Without a Nehru India ceased to be the moral leader of the non-aligned world. Whereas prior to 1962 she wielded immense power and influence despite her poverty and lack of military power, after the Chinese attack she was "cut to size" in the words of one unfriendly critic of Nehru.' *{{citation, last=Medcalf, first=Rory, title=Indo-Pacific Empire: China, America and the contest for the world's pivotal, publisher=Manchester University Press, year=2020, isbn=9781526150776, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=RCjXDwAAQBAJ&pg=PT81, quote= From an Indian perspective, the China-India war of 1962 was a shocking betrayal of the principles of cooperation and coexistence: a surprise attack that humiliated India and personally broke Nehru. *{{citation, last=Ganguly, first=Sumit, title=The Crisis in Kashmir: Portents of War, Hope of Peace, publisher=Woodrow Wilson Center Press and Cambridge University Press, year=1997, page=44, isbn=9780521655668, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=Fi66mjIqR1IC&pg=PA44, quote=In October 1962 India suffered the most humiliating military debacle in its post-independence history, at the hands of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA). The outcome of this conflict had far-reaching consequences for Indian foreign and defence policies. The harsh defeat that the Chinese PLA had inflicted on the Indian Army called into question some of the most deeply held precepts of Nehru's foreign and defence policies. *{{citation, last=Raghavan, first=Srinath, chapter=A Missed Opportunity? The Nehru-Zhou Enlai Summit of 1960, title=India and the Cold War, editor-last=Bhagavan, editor-first=Manu, publisher=University of North Carolina Press, page=121, year=2019, isbn=9781469651170, chapter-url=https://books.google.com/books?id=h-yoDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA121, quote= The 'forward policy' adopted by India to prevent the Chinese from occupying territory claimed by them was undertaken in the mistaken belief that Beijing would be cautious in dealing with India owing to Moscow's stance on the dispute and its growing proximity to India. These misjudgments would eventually culminate in India's humiliating defeat in the war of Octover–November 1962. India has had Indo-Pakistani relations, tense relations with neighbouring Pakistan; the two nations have gone to war four times: in Indo-Pakistani War of 1947, 1947, Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, 1965, Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, 1971, and Kargil War, 1999. Three of these wars were fought over the Kashmir conflict, disputed territory of Kashmir, while the fourth, the 1971 war, followed from India's support for the Bangladesh Liberation War, independence of Bangladesh.{{sfn, Gilbert, 2002, pp = 486–487 In the late 1980s, the Indian military twice intervened abroad at the invitation of the host country: a Indian Peace Keeping Force, peace-keeping operation in
Sri Lanka Sri Lanka (, ; si, ශ්‍රී ලංකාව, Śrī Laṅkā, translit-std=ISO (); ta, இலங்கை, Ilaṅkai, translit-std=ISO ()), formerly known as Ceylon, and officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, is ...

Sri Lanka
between 1987 and 1990; and an armed intervention to prevent a 1988 Maldives coup d'état, 1988 coup d'état attempt in the Maldives. After the 1965 war with Pakistan, India began to pursue close military and economic India-Soviet Union relations, ties with the Soviet Union; by the late 1960s, the Soviet Union was its largest arms supplier.{{sfn, Sharma, 1999, p = 56 Aside from ongoing its India–Russia relations, special relationship with Russia, India has wide-ranging India–Israel relations, defence relations with Israel and France–India relations, France. In recent years, it has played key roles in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation and the World Trade Organization. The nation has provided 100,000 Indian Armed Forces, military and Law enforcement in India, police personnel to serve in 35 United Nations peacekeeping, UN peacekeeping operations across four continents. It participates in the East Asia Summit, the G8+5, and other multilateral forums.{{sfn, Alford, 2008 India has close economic ties with countries in South America, Asia, and Africa; it pursues a Look East policy (India), "Look East" policy that seeks to strengthen partnerships with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, ASEAN nations, India–Japan relations, Japan, and India–South Korea relations, South Korea that revolve around many issues, but especially those involving economic investment and regional security.{{sfn, Ghosh, 2009, pp = 282–289{{sfn, Sisodia, Naidu, 2005, pp = 1–8 {{multiple image, perrow = 1, total_width = 220, upright = , align = right , image_style = border:none; , image1 = Indian Air Force contingent as a part of the Bastille Day Parade of France, in Paris on July 14, 2009.jpg , caption1 = The Indian Air Force contingent marching at the 221st Bastille Day military parade in Paris, on 14 July 2009. The parade at which India was the foreign guest was led by the India's oldest regiment, the Maratha Light Infantry, founded in 1768.{{citation, last=Muir, first=Hugh, title=Diary, work=The Guardian, date=13 July 2009, url=https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2009/jul/14/bbc-peter-salmon-trevor-mcdonald, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20141019165743/https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2009/jul/14/bbc-peter-salmon-trevor-mcdonald, archive-date=October 19, 2014, quote="Members of the Indian armed forces have the plum job of leading off the great morning parade for Bastille Day. Only after units and bands from India's navy and air force have followed the Maratha Light Infantry will the parade be entirely given over to ... France's armed services.", access-date=October 17, 2021, url-status=dead China's 596 (nuclear test), nuclear test of 1964, as well as its repeated threats to intervene in support of Pakistan in the 1965 war, convinced India to develop nuclear weapons.{{sfn, Perkovich, 2001, pp = 60–86, 106–125 India conducted its Smiling Buddha, first nuclear weapons test in 1974 and carried out Pokhran-II, additional underground testing in 1998. Despite criticism and military sanctions, India has signed neither the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty nor the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, considering both to be flawed and discriminatory.{{sfn, Kumar, 2010 India maintains a "no first use" nuclear policy and is developing a nuclear triad capability as a part of its "Minimum Credible Deterrence" doctrine.{{sfn, Nair, 2007{{sfn, Pandit, 2009 It is developing a Indian Ballistic Missile Defense Program, ballistic missile defence shield and, a HAL AMCA, fifth-generation fighter jet.{{cite news, last1=Pandit, first1=Rajat, title=Make-in-India: Plan to develop 5th-generation fighter aircraft, url=https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Make-in-India-Plan-to-develop-5th-generation-fighter-aircraft/articleshow/45802270.cms, work=The Times of India, agency=TNN, date=8 January 2015, access-date=October 17, 2021 Other indigenous military projects involve the design and implementation of Vikrant class aircraft carrier, ''Vikrant''-class aircraft carriers and Arihant class submarine, ''Arihant''-class nuclear submarines.{{cite news, date=5 October 2011, title=India, Russia Review Defence Ties, work=The Hindu, url=http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/article2514142.ece, access-date=8 October 2011, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20111007183650/http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/article2514142.ece, archive-date=7 October 2011, url-status=live Since the end of the Cold War, India has increased its economic, strategic, and military co-operation with the India–United States relations, United States and the India–European Union relations, European Union.{{sfn, Europa 2008 In 2008, a U.S.–India Civil Nuclear Agreement, civilian nuclear agreement was signed between India and the United States. Although India possessed nuclear weapons at the time and was not a party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, it received waivers from the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Nuclear Suppliers Group, ending earlier restrictions on India's nuclear technology and commerce. As a consequence, India became the sixth de facto nuclear weapons state.{{sfn, The Times of India 2008 India subsequently signed co-operation agreements involving Nuclear power in India, civilian nuclear energy with Russia,{{sfn, British Broadcasting Corporation 2009 France,{{sfn, Rediff 2008 a the India–United Kingdom relations, United Kingdom,{{sfn, Reuters, 2010 and Canada–India relations, Canada.{{sfn, Curry, 2010 {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220 , image_style = border:none; , align = left , , image1=Modi Nieto Mexico June 2016.jpg, caption1=Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India (left, background) in talks with President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico during a visit to Mexico, 2016 The President of India is the supreme commander of the nation's armed forces; with 1.45 million active troops, they compose the List of countries by number of troops, world's second-largest military. It comprises the Indian Army, the Indian Navy, the Indian Air Force, and the Indian Coast Guard.{{sfn, Central Intelligence Agency The official Indian List of countries by military expenditures, defence budget for 2011 was US$36.03 billion, or 1.83% of GDP.{{sfn, Behera, 2011 For the fiscal year spanning 2012–2013, US$40.44 billion was budgeted.{{sfn, Behera, 2012 According to a 2008 Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) report, India's annual military expenditure in terms of purchasing power stood at US$72.7 billion.{{sfn, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute 2008, p = 178 In 2011, the annual defence budget increased by 11.6%,{{sfn, Miglani, 2011 although this does not include funds that reach the military through other branches of government.{{sfn, Shukla, 2011 {{As of, 2012, India is the world's largest arms importer; between 2007 and 2011, it accounted for 10% of funds spent on international arms purchases.{{sfn, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute 2012 Much of the military expenditure was focused on defence against Pakistan and countering growing Chinese influence in the Indian Ocean.{{sfn, Miglani, 2011 In May 2017, the Indian Space Research Organisation launched the South Asia Satellite, a gift from India to its neighbouring SAARC countries.{{cite news , url=http://www.deccanherald.com/content/452938/isro-saarc-satellite-communication-vehicle.html , title=Isro-Saarc satellite to be a communication vehicle , work=Deccan Herald , agency=Deccan Herald News Service , date=12 January 2015 , access-date=22 April 2015 , archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20150628084201/http://www.deccanherald.com/content/452938/isro-saarc-satellite-communication-vehicle.html , archive-date=28 June 2015 , url-status=live In October 2018, India signed a US$5.43 billion (over {{INR, link=yes400 billion) agreement with Russia to procure four S-400 Triumf surface-to-air missile defence systems, Russia's most advanced long-range missile defence system.


Economy

{{Main, Economy of India {{multiple image, perrow = 1/2, total_width = 440 , align = right , image_style = border:none; , image1 = Plowing the land in India - modern and traditional.jpg , caption1 = A farmer in northwestern Karnataka ploughs his field with a tractor even as another in a field beyond does the same with a pair of oxen. In 2018, 44% of India's total workforce was employed in agriculture.{{citation , title=Employment in agriculture (% of total employment) (modeled ILO estimate) , url=https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SL.AGR.EMPL.ZS?most_recent_value_desc=false&view=map , year=2019 , access-date=22 August 2019 , website=The World Bank , archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20190822193854/https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SL.AGR.EMPL.ZS%3Fmost_recent_value_desc%3Dfalse%26view%3Dmap , archive-date=22 August 2019 , url-status=live , image3 = Women at work, Gujarat (cropped).jpg , caption3 = Women tend to a recently planted rice field in Junagadh district in Gujarat. 57% of India's female workforce was employed in agriculture in 2018.{{citation , title=Employment in agriculture, female (% of female employment) (modeled ILO estimate) , url=https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SL.AGR.EMPL.FE.ZS?most_recent_value_desc=false&view=map , year=2019 , access-date=22 August 2019 , website=The World Bank , archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20190822193855/https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SL.AGR.EMPL.FE.ZS%3Fmost_recent_value_desc%3Dfalse%26view%3Dmap , archive-date=22 August 2019 , url-status=live , image2 = ILRI, Stevie Mann - Villager and calf share milk from cow in Rajasthan, India.jpg , caption2 = India is the world's largest producer of milk, with the largest population of cattle. In 2018, nearly 80% of India's milk was sourced from small farms with herd size between one and two, the milk harvested by hand milking.{{citation, work=Business Line, last=Kapoor, first=Rana, title=Growth in organised dairy sector, a boost for rural livelihood, url=https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/economy/agri-business/growth-in-organised-dairy-sector-a-boost-for-rural-livelihood/article7810689.ece#, date=27 October 2015, access-date=26 August 2019, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20190720215652/https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/economy/agri-business/growth-in-organised-dairy-sector-a-boost-for-rural-livelihood/article7810689.ece, archive-date=20 July 2019, url-status=live, quote="Nearly 80 per cent of India's milk production is contributed by small and marginal farmers, with an average herd size of one to two milching animals." According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Indian economy in 2020 was nominally worth $2.7 trillion; it is the List of countries by GDP (nominal), sixth-largest economy by market exchange rates, and is around $8.9 trillion, the List of countries by GDP (PPP), third-largest by purchasing power parity (PPP).{{cite web , url=https://www.imf.org/en/Publications/WEO/weo-database/2021/April/weo-report?c=512,914,612,614,311,213,911,314,193,122,912,313,419,513,316,913,124,339,638,514,218,963,616,223,516,918,748,618,624,522,622,156,626,628,228,924,233,632,636,634,238,662,960,423,935,128,611,321,243,248,469,253,642,643,939,734,644,819,172,132,646,648,915,134,652,174,328,258,656,654,336,263,268,532,944,176,534,536,429,433,178,436,136,343,158,439,916,664,826,542,967,443,917,544,941,446,666,668,672,946,137,546,674,676,548,556,678,181,867,682,684,273,868,921,948,943,686,688,518,728,836,558,138,196,278,692,694,962,142,449,564,565,283,853,288,293,566,964,182,359,453,968,922,714,862,135,716,456,722,942,718,724,576,936,961,813,726,199,733,184,524,361,362,364,732,366,144,146,463,528,923,738,578,537,742,866,369,744,186,925,869,746,926,466,112,111,298,927,846,299,582,487,474,754,698,&s=NGDPD,&sy=2021&ey=2021&ssm=0&scsm=1&scc=0&ssd=1&ssc=0&sic=0&sort=country&ds=.&br=1, title=World Economic Outlook Database: April 2021 , date=April 2021 , website=IMF.org , publisher=International Monetary Fund, access-date=6 April 2021 With its average annual GDP growth rate of 5.8% over the past two decades, and reaching 6.1% during 2011–2012,{{sfn, International Monetary Fund 2011a, p = 2 India is one of the List of countries by real GDP growth rate, world's fastest-growing economies.{{sfn, Nayak, Goldar, Agrawal, 2010, p = xxv However, the country ranks 139th in the world in List of countries by GDP (nominal) per capita, nominal GDP per capita and 118th in List of countries by GDP (PPP) per capita, GDP per capita at PPP.{{sfn, International Monetary Fund Until 1991, all Indian governments followed protectionism, protectionist policies that were influenced by socialist economics. Widespread Licence Raj, state intervention and regulation largely walled the economy off from the outside world. An acute 1991 India economic crisis, balance of payments crisis in 1991 forced the nation to Economic liberalisation in India, liberalise its economy;{{sfn, Wolpert, 2003, p = xiv since then it has moved slowly towards a free-market system{{sfn, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development 2007{{sfn, Gargan, 1992 by emphasising both foreign trade and direct investment inflows.{{sfn, Alamgir, 2008, pp = 23, 97 India has been a member of WTO since 1 January 1995.{{sfn, WTO 1995 The 522-million-worker Labour in India, Indian labour force is the List of countries by labour force, world's second-largest, {{As of, 2017, lc=y.{{sfn, Central Intelligence Agency The service sector makes up 55.6% of GDP, the industrial sector 26.3% and the agricultural sector 18.1%. India's foreign exchange remittances of US$70 billion in 2014, the largest in the world, were contributed to its economy by 25 million Indians working in foreign countries. Major agricultural products include: rice, wheat, oilseed, cotton, jute, tea, sugarcane, and potatoes.{{sfn, Library of Congress, 2004 Major industries include: textiles, telecommunications, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, food processing, steel, transport equipment, cement, mining, petroleum, machinery, and software.{{sfn, Library of Congress, 2004 In 2006, the share of external trade in India's GDP stood at 24%, up from 6% in 1985.{{sfn, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development 2007 In 2008, India's share of world trade was 1.68%; In 2011, India was the world's List of countries by imports, tenth-largest importer and the List of countries by exports, nineteenth-largest exporter.{{sfn, World Trade Organization 2010 Major exports include: petroleum products, textile goods, jewellery, software, engineering goods, chemicals, and manufactured leather goods.{{sfn, Library of Congress, 2004 Major imports include: crude oil, machinery, gems, fertiliser, and chemicals.{{sfn, Library of Congress, 2004 Between 2001 and 2011, the contribution of petrochemical and engineering goods to total exports grew from 14% to 42%.{{sfn, Economist 2011 India was the world's second largest textile exporter after
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in . It is the world's , with a of more than 1.4 billion. China spans five geographical and 14 different countries, the in the world after . Covering an area of ap ...

China
in the 2013 calendar year. Averaging an economic growth rate of 7.5% for several years prior to 2007,{{sfn, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development 2007 India has more than doubled its hourly wage rates during the first decade of the 21st century.{{sfn, Bonner, 2010 Some 431 million Indians have left poverty since 1985; India's middle classes are projected to number around 580 million by 2030.{{sfn, Farrell, Beinhocker, 2007 Though ranking 51st in Global Competitiveness Report, global competitiveness, {{As of, 2010, lc=y, India ranks 17th in financial market sophistication, 24th in the banking sector, 44th in business sophistication, and 39th in innovation, ahead of several advanced economies.{{sfn, Schwab, 2010 With seven of the world's top 15 information technology outsourcing companies based in India, {{As of, 2009, lc=y, the country is viewed as the second-most favourable outsourcing destination after the United States.{{sfn, Sheth, 2009 India was ranked 48th in the Global Innovation Index in 2020, it has increased its ranking considerably since 2015, where it was 81st. India's consumer market, the world's List of largest consumer markets, eleventh-largest, is expected to become fifth-largest by 2030.{{sfn, Farrell, Beinhocker, 2007 Driven by growth, India's nominal GDP per capita increased steadily from US$329 in 1991, when economic liberalisation began, to US$1,265 in 2010, to an estimated US$1,723 in 2016. It is expected to grow to US$2,191 by 2021. However, it has remained lower than those of other Asian developing countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Sri Lanka, and Thailand, and is expected to remain so in the near future. {{multiple image, perrow = 1, total_width = 500 , align = left , image_style = border:none; , image1 = Bangalore Panorama edit1.jpg , caption1 = A panorama of Bangalore, the centre of India's software development economy. In the 1980s, when the first multinational corporations began to set up centres in India, they chose Bangalore because of the large pool of skilled graduates in the area, in turn due to the many science and engineering colleges in the surrounding region.{{citation, last1=Scott, first1=Allen J., last2=Garofoli, first2=Gioacchino, title=Development on the Ground: Clusters, Networks and Regions in Emerging Economies, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=GUCUAgAAQBAJ&pg=PA208, year=2007, publisher=Routledge, isbn=978-1-135-98422-9, page=208 According to a 2011 PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) report, India's GDP at purchasing power parity could overtake that of the United States by 2045.{{sfn, Hawksworth, Tiwari, 2011 During the next four decades, Indian GDP is expected to grow at an annualised average of 8%, making it potentially the world's fastest-growing major economy until 2050.{{sfn, Hawksworth, Tiwari, 2011 The report highlights key growth factors: a young and rapidly growing working-age population; growth in the manufacturing sector because of rising education and engineering skill levels; and sustained growth of the consumer market driven by a rapidly growing middle-class.{{sfn, Hawksworth, Tiwari, 2011 The World Bank cautions that, for India to achieve its economic potential, it must continue to focus on public sector reform, Transport in India, transport infrastructure, agricultural and rural development, removal of labour regulations, Education in India, education, Energy policy of India, energy security, and Healthcare in India, public health and nutrition. According to the Worldwide Cost of Living Report 2017 released by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) which was created by comparing more than 400 individual prices across 160 products and services, four of the cheapest cities were in India: Bangalore (3rd), Mumbai (5th), Chennai (5th) and New Delhi (8th).


Industries

{{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220, image_style = border:none;, align = right , image1=Cherry Resort inside Temi Tea Garden, Namchi, Sikkim.jpg, caption1=A tea garden in Sikkim. India, the world's second largest-producer of tea, is a nation of one billion tea drinkers, who consume 70% of India's tea output. India's Telecommunications in India, telecommunication industry is the List of mobile network operators, second-largest in the world with over 1.2 billion subscribers. It contributes 6.5% to India's GDP. After the third quarter of 2017, India surpassed the US to become the second largest smartphone market in the world after China. The Automotive industry in India, Indian automotive industry, the world's second-fastest growing, increased domestic sales by 26% during 2009–2010,{{sfn, Business Line 2010 and exports by 36% during 2008–2009.{{sfn, Express India 2009 At the end of 2011, the Information technology in India, Indian IT industry employed 2.8 million professionals, generated revenues close to US$100 billion equalling 7.5% of Indian GDP, and contributed 26% of India's merchandise exports.{{sfn, Nasscom 2011–2012 The pharmaceutical industry in India emerged as a global player. As of 2021, with 3000 pharmaceutical companies and 10,500 manufacturing units India is the world's third-largest pharmaceutical producer, largest producer of generic medicines and supply up to 50%—60% of global vaccines demand, these all contribute up to {{USD24.44 billions in exports and India's local pharmacutical market is estimated up to {{USD42 billion.{{cite news, url=https://www.financialexpress.com/lifestyle/health/indian-pharma-a-strategic-sector-from-make-in-india-to-make-and-develop-in-india/2331377/, title=Indian Pharma: a strategic sector from 'Make in India' to 'Make and Develop in India', work=The Financial Express (India), date=16 September 2021, access-date=18 October 2021{{cite web, url=https://www.ibef.org/industry/pharmaceutical-india.aspx, title=Indian Pharmaceutical Industry, work=India Brand Equity Foundation, date=12 October 2021, access-date=18 October 2021 India is among the top 12 biotech destinations in the world.{{sfn, Yep, 2011 The Indian biotech industry grew by 15.1% in 2012–2013, increasing its revenues from {{INR204.4 billion (Indian rupees) to {{INR235.24 billion (US$3.94 billion at June 2013 exchange rates).


Energy

{{Main, Energy in India, Energy policy of India India's capacity to generate electrical power is 300 gigawatts, of which 42 gigawatts is Renewable energy in India, renewable.{{cite web, title=India's Total Power Generation Capacity Crosses 300 GW Mark, url=https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/indias-total-power-generation-capacity-crosses-300-gw-mark-1438906, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20170616181350/http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/indias-total-power-generation-capacity-crosses-300-gw-mark-1438906, archive-date=16 June 2017, date=August 1, 2016, access-date=October 17, 2021, website=NDTV India, NDTV Coal in India, The country's usage of coal is a major cause of Climate change in India#Greenhouse gas emissions, greenhouse gas emissions by India but its Renewable energy in India, renewable energy is competing strongly. India emits about 7% of global greenhouse gas emissions. This equates to about 2.5 tons of carbon dioxide per person per year, which is half the world average.{{Cite web, last=USAID, date=September 2018, title=Greenhouse Gas Emissions in India, url=https://www.climatelinks.org/sites/default/files/asset/document/India%20GHG%20Emissions%20Factsheet%20FINAL.pdf, access-date=10 June 2021, website={{Cite web, last=UN Environment Programme, date=2019, title=Emissions Gap Report 2019, url=http://www.unenvironment.org/resources/emissions-gap-report-2019, access-date=10 June 2021, website=UNEP - UN Environment Programme, language=en Increasing Electrification, access to electricity and clean cooking with liquefied petroleum gas have been priorities for energy in India.


Socio-economic challenges

{{multiple image , perrow = 1 , total_width = 220 , align = left , image_style = border:none; , image1 = Female health workers in India (34332433890).jpg , caption1= Health workers about to begin another day of immunisation against infectious diseases in 2006. Eight years later, and three years after India's last case of polio, the World Health Organization declared India to be polio-free.{{citation, last1=Chan, first1=Margaret, last2=Director-General, World Health Organization, title=Address at the "India celebrates triumph over polio" event, location=New Delhi, India, publisher=World Health Organization, date=11 February 2014, url=https://www.who.int/director-general/speeches/detail/who-director-general-celebrates-polio-free-india, access-date=17 October 2021 , direction = , alt1 = Despite economic growth during recent decades, India continues to face socio-economic challenges. In 2006, India contained the poverty in India, largest number of people living below the World Bank's international poverty line of US$1.25 per day. The proportion decreased from 60% in 1981 to 42% in 2005. Under the World Bank's later revised poverty line, it was 21% in 2011.{{efn, In 2015, the World Bank raised its international poverty line to $1.90 per day.{{cite web, title=Poverty headcount ratio at $1.90 a day (2011 PPP) (% of population), url=http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SI.POV.DDAY?locations=IN, publisher=World Bank, access-date=26 February 2017, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20170215021227/http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SI.POV.DDAY?locations=IN, archive-date=15 February 2017 30.7% of India's children under the age of five are underweight. According to a Food and Agriculture Organization report in 2015, 15% of the population is undernourished. The Mid-Day Meal Scheme attempts to lower these rates.{{sfn, Drèze, Goyal, 2008, p = 46 According to a 2016 Walk Free Foundation report there were an estimated 18.3 million people in India, or 1.4% of the population, living in the forms of modern slavery, such as bonded labour, child labour, human trafficking, and forced begging, among others. According to the 2011 census, there were 10.1 million child labourers in the country, a decline of 2.6 million from 12.6 million in 2001. Since 1991, List of Indian states by GDP, economic inequality between India's states has consistently grown: the per-capita Net domestic product, net state domestic product of the richest states in 2007 was 3.2 times that of the poorest.{{sfn, Pal, Ghosh, 2007 Corruption in India is perceived to have decreased. According to the Corruption Perceptions Index, India ranked 78th out of 180 countries in 2018 with a score of 41 out of 100, an improvement from 85th in 2014.


Demographics, languages, and religion

{{Main, Demographics of India, Languages of India, Religion in India {{See also, South Asian ethnic groups {{multiple image, perrow = 2, total_width = 440 , align = right , title = India by population density, religion, language , image1 = India Population Density 1909.jpg, caption1 = The population density of India by natural divisions, based on the Indian census of 1901 , image2 = 2011 Census India population density map, states and union territories.svg, caption2 = Population density of India by each state, based on the Indian census of 2011 , image3 = Brit IndianEmpireReligions3.jpg, caption3 = The prevailing religions of South Asia based on district-wise majorities in the 1901 census , image4 = South Asian Language Families.png, caption4 = The language families of South Asia With 1,210,193,422 residents reported in the 2011 Census of India, 2011 provisional census report,{{sfn, Provisional Population Totals Paper 1 of 2011 India, p=160 India is the world's second-most populous country. Its population grew by 17.64% from 2001 to 2011,{{sfn, Provisional Population Totals Paper 1 of 2011 India, p=165 compared to 21.54% growth in the previous decade (1991–2001).{{sfn, Provisional Population Totals Paper 1 of 2011 India, p=165 The human sex ratio, according to the 2011 census, is 940 females per 1,000 males.{{sfn, Provisional Population Totals Paper 1 of 2011 India, p=160 The median age was 28.7 {{as of, 2020, lc=on.{{sfn, Central Intelligence Agency The first post-colonial census, conducted in 1951, counted 361 million people. Medical advances made in the last 50 years as well as increased agricultural productivity brought about by the "Green Revolution in India, Green Revolution" have caused India's population to grow rapidly.{{sfn, Rorabacher, 2010, pp = 35–39 The average life expectancy in India is at 68 years—69.6 years for women, 67.3 years for men. There are around 50 physicians per 100,000 Indians.{{sfn, Dev, Rao, 2009, p = 329 Migration from rural to urban areas has been an important dynamic in India's recent history. The number of people living in urban areas grew by 31.2% between 1991 and 2001.{{sfn, Garg, 2005 Yet, in 2001, over 70% still lived in rural areas.{{sfn, Dyson, Visaria, 2005, pp = 115–129{{sfn, Ratna, 2007, pp = 271–272 The level of urbanisation increased further from 27.81% in the 2001 Census to 31.16% in the 2011 Census. The slowing down of the overall population growth rate was due to the sharp decline in the growth rate in rural areas since 1991.{{sfn, Chandramouli, 2011 According to the 2011 census, there are 53 List of million-plus urban agglomerations in India, million-plus urban agglomerations in India; among them Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad, in decreasing order by population.{{cite web , url=http://censusindia.gov.in/2011-prov-results/paper2/data_files/India2/Table_3_PR_UA_Citiees_1Lakh_and_Above.pdf , title=Urban Agglomerations/Cities having population 1 lakh and above , publisher=Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India , access-date=12 May 2014 , archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20131017153124/http://censusindia.gov.in/2011-prov-results/paper2/data_files/India2/Table_3_PR_UA_Citiees_1Lakh_and_Above.pdf , archive-date=17 October 2013 The literacy rate in 2011 was 74.04%: 65.46% among females and 82.14% among males.{{sfn, Provisional Population Totals Paper 1 of 2011 India, p=163 The rural-urban literacy gap, which was 21.2 percentage points in 2001, dropped to 16.1 percentage points in 2011. The improvement in the rural literacy rate is twice that of urban areas.{{sfn, Chandramouli, 2011 Kerala is the most literate state with 93.91% literacy; while Bihar the least with 63.82%.{{sfn, Provisional Population Totals Paper 1 of 2011 India, p=163 {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220, image_style = border:none;, align = left , image1=Interior of San Thome Basilica.jpg, caption1=The interior of San Thome Basilica, Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Christianity is believed to have been introduced to India by the late 2nd century by Christianity in India#Early Christianity in India, Syriac-speaking Christians. India is home to Languages of India, two major language families: Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan (spoken by about 74% of the population) and Dravidian languages, Dravidian (spoken by 24% of the population). Other languages spoken in India come from the Austroasiatic languages, Austroasiatic and Sino-Tibetan languages, Sino-Tibetan language families. India has no national language.{{sfn, Dharwadker, 2010, pp = 168–194, 186
Hindi Hindi (Devanagari: , हिंदी, ISO 15919, ISO: ), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi (Devanagari: , ISO 15919, ISO: ), is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in Hindi Belt, North India. Hindi has been described as a Standard la ...

Hindi
, with the largest number of speakers, is the official language of the government.{{sfn, Ottenheimer, 2008, p = 303{{sfn, Mallikarjun, 2004 English language, English is used extensively in business and administration and has the status of a "subsidiary official language";{{sfn, Ministry of Home Affairs 1960 it is important in Education in India, education, especially as a medium of higher education. Each state and union territory has one or more official languages, and the constitution recognises in particular 22 "scheduled languages". The 2011 census reported the religion in India with the largest number of followers was Hinduism in India, Hinduism (79.80% of the population), followed by Islam in India, Islam (14.23%); the remaining were Christianity in India, Christianity (2.30%), Sikhism in India, Sikhism (1.72%),
Buddhism Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and ...
(0.70%), Statistics of Jainism, Jainism (0.36%) and others{{efn, name=remaining religions (0.9%).{{cite web, url=http://www.censusindia.gov.in/2011census/C-01/DDW00C-01%20MDDS.XLS , title=C −1 Population by religious community – 2011 , publisher=Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner , access-date=25 August 2015 , url-status=dead , archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20150825155850/http://www.censusindia.gov.in/2011census/C-01/DDW00C-01%20MDDS.XLS , archive-date=25 August 2015 India has the List of countries by Muslim population#List, third-largest Muslim population—the largest for a non-Muslim majority country.


Culture

{{Main, Culture of India {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220, image_style = border:none;, align = right , image1=Sikh pilgrim at the Golden Temple (Harmandir Sahib) in Amritsar, India.jpg, caption1=A Sikh pilgrim at the Harmandir Sahib, or Golden Temple, in Amritsar, Punjab Indian cultural history spans more than {{nowrap, 4,500 years.{{sfn, Kuiper, 2010, p = 15 During the Vedic period ({{Circa, {{BCE, 1700, {{BCE, 500 ), the foundations of Hindu philosophy, Hindu mythology, mythology, Hindu theology, theology and Hindu texts, literature were laid, and many beliefs and practices which still exist today, such as ''Dharma, dhárma'', ''Karma, kárma'', ''yoga, yóga'', and ''moksha, mokṣa'', were established.{{sfn, Kuiper, 2010, p = 86 India is notable for its Indian religions, religious diversity, with
Hinduism Hinduism () is an Indian religion Indian religions, sometimes also termed Dharmic religions or Indic religions, are the religions that originated in the Indian subcontinent. These religions, which include Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, ...

Hinduism
,
Buddhism Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and ...

Buddhism
,
Sikhism Sikhism () or Sikhi ( pa, ਸਿੱਖੀ ', , from pa, ਸਿੱਖ, lit=disciple', 'seeker', or 'learner, translit=Sikh, label=none)''Sikhism'' (indigenously known as ''Sikhī'') originated from the word ''Sikh'', which comes from the Sanskr ...
,
Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection is a word or ex ...
,
Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as the world of Abrahamism and Semitic religions, are a group of Semitic-originated religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of ...

Christianity
, and
Jainism Jainism (), traditionally known as ''Jain Dharma'', is an ancient Indian religion. It is one of the oldest Indian religions. The three main pillars of Jainism are ''Ahimsa in Jainism, ahiṃsā'' (non-violence), ''anekāntavāda'' (non-absolut ...

Jainism
among the nation's major religions.{{sfn, Heehs, 2002, pp = 2–5 The predominant religion, Hinduism, has been shaped by various historical schools of thought, including those of the ''Upanishads'',{{sfn, Deutsch, 1969, pp = 3, 78 the ''Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, Yoga Sutras'', the Bhakti, ''Bhakti'' movement,{{sfn, Heehs, 2002, pp = 2–5 and by Buddhist philosophy.{{sfn, Nakamura, 1999


Visual art

{{main, Indian art South Asia has an ancient tradition of art, which has exchanged influences with the parts of Eurasia. Indus Valley Civilisation#Seals, Seals from the third millennium BCE Indus Valley Civilization of
Pakistan Pakistan, . Pronounced variably in English as , , , and . officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies by population, fifth-most populous country, with a popul ...

Pakistan
and northern India have been found, usually carved with animals, but a few with human figures. The "Pashupati" seal, excavated in
Mohenjo-daro Mohenjo-daro (; sd, موئن جو دڙو'', ''meaning 'Mound of the Dead Men';
, Pakistan, in 1928–29, is the best known.{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, pp=14–16{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=17–18 After this there is a long period with virtually nothing surviving.{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=17–18{{Sfn, Rowland, 1970, pp=46–47 Almost all surviving ancient Indian art thereafter is in various forms of religious Indian sculpture, sculpture in durable materials, or coins. There was probably originally far more in wood, which is lost. In north India Mauryan art is the first imperial movement.{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, pp=35–46{{Sfn, Rowland, 1970, pp=67–70{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=22–24 In the first millennium CE, Buddhist art spread with Indian religions to Central Asia, Central, East Asia, East and South-East Asia, the last also greatly influenced by Hindu art.{{Sfn, Rowland, 1970, pp=185–198, 252, 385–466 Over the following centuries a distinctly Indian style of sculpting the human figure developed, with less interest in articulating precise anatomy than ancient Greek sculpture but showing smoothly-flowing forms expressing ''prana'' ("breath" or life-force).{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, pp=22, 88{{Sfn, Rowland, 1970, pp=35, 99–100 This is often complicated by the need to give figures multiple arms or heads, or represent different genders on the left and right of figures, as with the Ardhanarishvara form of Shiva and Parvati.{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, pp=18–19{{Sfn, Blurton, 1993, p=151 Most of the earliest large sculpture is Buddhist, either excavated from Buddhist stupas such as Sanchi, Sarnath and Amaravati Stupa, Amaravati,{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=32–38 or is rock-cut reliefs at sites such as Ajanta Caves, Ajanta, Karla Caves, Karla and Ellora. Hindu and Jain sites appear rather later.{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=43–55{{Sfn, Rowland, 1970, pp=113–119 In spite of this complex mixture of religious traditions, generally, the prevailing artistic style at any time and place has been shared by the major religious groups, and sculptors probably usually served all communities.{{Sfn, Blurton, 1993, pp=10–11 Gupta art, at its peak {{circa, {{CE, 300, {{CE, 500 , is often regarded as a classical period whose influence lingered for many centuries after; it saw a new dominance of Hindu sculpture, as at the Elephanta Caves.{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, pp=111–121{{Sfn, Michell, 2000, pp=44–70 Across the north, this became rather stiff and formulaic after {{circa, {{CE, 800 , though rich with finely carved detail in the surrounds of statues.{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=212–216 But in the South, under the
Pallava The Pallava dynasty was an Indian dynasty that existed from 275 CE to 897 CE, ruling a portion of southern India South India is a region located in the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hin ...
and Chola dynasty, Chola dynasties, sculpture in both stone and bronze had a Chola art and architecture#Sculpture and bronzes, sustained period of great achievement; the large bronzes with Shiva as Nataraja have become an iconic symbol of India.{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, pp=152–160{{Sfn, Blurton, 1993, pp=225–227 Ancient painting has only survived at a few sites, of which the crowded scenes of court life in the Ajanta Caves are by far the most important, but it was evidently highly developed, and is mentioned as a courtly accomplishment in Gupta times.{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=356–361{{Sfn, Rowland, 1970, pp=242–251 Painted manuscripts of religious texts survive from Eastern India about the 10th century onwards, most of the earliest being Buddhist and later Jain. No doubt the style of these was used in larger paintings.{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=361–370 The Persian-derived Deccan painting, starting just before the Mughal miniature, between them give the first large body of secular painting, with an emphasis on portraits, and the recording of princely pleasures and wars.{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, pp=202–208{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=372–382, 400–406 The style spread to Hindu courts, especially Rajput painting, among the Rajputs, and developed a variety of styles, with the smaller courts often the most innovative, with figures such as Nihâl Chand and Nainsukh.{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, pp=222–243{{Sfn, Harle, 1994, pp=384–397, 407–420 As a market developed among European residents, it was supplied by Company painting by Indian artists with considerable Western influence.{{Sfn, Craven, 1997, p=243{{Sfn, Michell, 2000, p=210 In the 19th century, cheap Kalighat paintings of gods and everyday life, done on paper, were urban folk art from Calcutta, which later saw the Bengal School of Art, reflecting the art colleges founded by the British, the first movement in modern Indian painting.{{Sfn, Michell, 2000, pp=210–211{{Sfn, Blurton, 1993, p=211 File:Bhutesvara Yakshis Mathura reliefs 2nd century CE front.jpg, Bhutesvara Yakshis, Buddhist reliefs from Mathura, {{CE, 2nd century File:MET DT5237 (cropped).jpg, Gupta art, Gupta terracotta relief, Krishna Killing the Keshi (demon), Horse Demon Keshi, 5th century File:Elephanta Caves (27804449706) (cropped).jpg, Elephanta Caves, triple-bust (sculpture), bust (''trimurti'') of Shiva, {{convert, 18, ft, m tall, {{circa, 550 File:Jahangir Receives Prince Khurram at Ajmer on His Return from the Mewar Campaign.jpg, ''Jahangir Receives Shah Jahan, Prince Khurram at Ajmer on His Return from the Mewar Campaign'', Balchand, {{circa, 1635 File:Unknown, Kangra, India - Krishna Fluting to the Milkmaids - Google Art Project.jpg, ''Krishna Fluting to the Milkmaids'', Kangra painting, 1775–1785


Architecture

{{Main, Architecture of India {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=300, image_style = border:none;, align = left , image1=Taj Mahal from the sky.jpg, caption1=The Taj Mahal showing the Yamuna river behind and the Mughal garden in front Much of Architecture of India, Indian architecture, including the Taj Mahal, other works of Mughal architecture, and Dravidian architecture, South Indian architecture, blends ancient local traditions with imported styles.{{sfn, Kuiper, 2010, pp = 296–329 Indian vernacular architecture, Vernacular architecture is also regional in its flavours. ''Vastu shastra'', literally "science of construction" or "architecture" and ascribed to Mamuni Mayan,{{sfn, Silverman, 2007, p = 20 explores how the laws of nature affect human dwellings;{{sfn, Kumar, 2000, p = 5 it employs precise geometry and directional alignments to reflect perceived cosmic constructs.{{sfn, Roberts, 2004, p = 73 As applied in Hindu temple architecture, it is influenced by the ''Shilpa Shastras'', a series of foundational texts whose basic mythological form is the ''Vastu-Purusha mandala'', a square that embodied the "Absolute (philosophy), absolute".{{sfn, Lang, Moleski, 2010, pp = 151–152 The Taj Mahal, built in Agra between 1631 and 1648 by orders of Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his wife, has been described in the UNESCO World Heritage List as "the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world's heritage".{{sfn, United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation Indo-Saracenic Revival architecture, developed by the British in the late 19th century, drew on Indo-Islamic architecture.{{sfn, Chopra, 2011, p = 46


Literature

{{Main, Indian literature The earliest literature in India, composed between {{BCE, 1500 and {{CE, 1200, was in the
Sanskrit Sanskrit (; attributively , ; nominalization, nominally , , ) is a classical language of South Asia that belongs to the Indo-Aryan languages, Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It arose in South Asia after its predecessor langua ...

Sanskrit
language.{{sfn, Hoiberg, Ramchandani, 2000 Major works of Sanskrit literature include the ''
Rigveda The ''Rigveda'' or ''Rig Veda'' ( ', from ' "praise" and ' "knowledge") is an of s (''suktas''). It is one of the four sacred canonical (') known as the . The ''Rigveda'' is the oldest known text. Its early layers are one of the oldes ...
'' ({{circa, {{BCE, 1500, {{BCE, 1200 ), the Indian epic poetry, epics: ''Mahabharata, Mahābhārata'' ( {{circa, {{BCE, 400, {{CE, 400 ) and the ''Ramayana'' ( {{circa, {{BCE, 300 and later); ''Abhijñānaśākuntalam'' (''The Recognition of Śakuntalā'', and other dramas of Kālidāsa ( {{circa, {{CE, 5th century ) and ''Sanskrit Classical poetry, Mahākāvya'' poetry.{{sfn, Johnson, 2008{{sfn, MacDonell, 2004, pp = 1–40{{sfn, Kālidāsa, Johnson, 2001 In Tamil literature, the Sangam literature ( {{circa, {{BCE, 600, {{BCE, 300 ) consisting of 2,381 poems, composed by 473 poets, is the earliest work.{{sfn, Zvelebil, 1997, p = 12{{sfn, Hart, 1975{{sfn, Encyclopædia Britannica, 2008{{sfn, Ramanujan, 1985, pp = ix–x From the 14th to the 18th centuries, India's literary traditions went through a period of drastic change because of the emergence of Bhakti movement, devotional poets like Kabir, Kabīr, Tulsidas, Tulsīdās, and Guru Nanak, Guru Nānak. This period was characterised by a varied and wide spectrum of thought and expression; as a consequence, medieval Indian literary works differed significantly from classical traditions.{{sfn, Das, 2005 In the 19th century, Indian writers took a new interest in social questions and psychological descriptions. In the 20th century, Indian literature was influenced by the Works of Rabindranath Tagore, works of the Bengali poet, author and philosopher Rabindranath Tagore,{{sfn, Datta, 2006 who was a recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature.


Performing arts and media

{{Main, Music of India, Dance in India, Cinema of India, Television in India {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=200, image_style = border:none;, align = right , image1=Kuchipudi Performer DS.jpg, caption1=India's Sangeet Natak Akademi, National Academy of Performance Arts has recognised eight Indian dance styles to be ''classical''. One such is Kuchipudi shown here. Music of India, Indian music ranges over various traditions and regional styles. Indian classical music, Classical music encompasses two genres and their various folk offshoots: the northern Hindustani classical music, Hindustani and southern Carnatic music, Carnatic schools.{{sfn, Massey, Massey, 1998 Regionalised popular forms include filmi and Indian folk music, folk music; the Syncretism, syncretic tradition of the ''bauls'' is a well-known form of the latter. Dance in India, Indian dance also features diverse folk and classical forms. Among the better-known List of Indian folk dances, folk dances are: the ''Bhangra (dance), bhangra'' of Punjab, the ''bihu dance, bihu'' of Assam, the ''Jhumair'' and ''Chhau dance, chhau'' of Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal, ''Garba (dance), garba'' and ''Dandiya Raas, dandiya'' of Gujarat, ''ghoomar'' of Rajasthan, and the ''lavani'' of Maharashtra. Eight dance forms, many with narrative forms and mythological elements, have been accorded Classical Indian dance, classical dance status by India's Sangeet Natak Akademi, National Academy of Music, Dance, and Drama. These are: ''Bharata Natyam, bharatanatyam'' of the state of Tamil Nadu, ''kathak'' of Uttar Pradesh, ''kathakali'' and ''mohiniyattam'' of Kerala, ''kuchipudi'' of Andhra Pradesh, ''Manipuri dance, manipuri'' of Manipur, ''odissi'' of Odisha, and the ''sattriya'' of Assam.{{sfn, Encyclopædia Britannica b Theatre in India melds music, dance, and improvised or written dialogue.{{sfn, Lal, 2004, pp = 23, 30, 235 Often based on Hindu mythology, but also borrowing from medieval romances or social and political events, Indian theatre includes: the ''bhavai'' of Gujarat, the ''Jatra (Bengal), jatra'' of West Bengal, the ''nautanki'' and ''ramlila'' of North India, ''tamasha'' of Maharashtra, ''burrakatha'' of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, ''terukkuttu'' of Tamil Nadu, and the ''yakshagana'' of Karnataka.{{sfn, Karanth, 2002, p = 26 India has a theatre training institute the National School of Drama (NSD) that is situated at New Delhi It is an autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Culture (India), Ministry of Culture, Government of India. The Cinema of India, Indian film industry produces the world's most-watched cinema.{{sfn, Dissanayake, Gokulsing, 2004 Established regional cinematic traditions exist in the Cinema of Assam, Assamese, Cinema of West Bengal, Bengali, Bhojpuri cinema, Bhojpuri, Bollywood, Hindi, Cinema of Karnataka, Kannada, Malayalam cinema, Malayalam, Cinema of Punjab, Punjabi, Gujarati cinema, Gujarati, Marathi cinema, Marathi, Cinema of Odisha, Odia, Tamil cinema, Tamil, and Telugu cinema, Telugu languages.{{sfn, Rajadhyaksha, Willemen, 1999, page = 652 The Hindi language film industry (''Bollywood'') is the largest sector representing 43% of box office revenue, followed by the Cinema of South India, South Indian Telugu and Tamil film industries which represent 36% combined.{{cite web, url=http://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/in/Documents/technology-media-telecommunications/in-tmt-economic-contribution-of-motion-picture-and-television-industry-noexp.pdf, title=Economic Contribution of the Indian Motion Picture and Television Industry, publisher=Deloitte, date=March 2014, access-date=21 April 2014 Television broadcasting began in India in 1959 as a state-run medium of communication and expanded slowly for more than two decades.{{sfn, Kaminsky, Long, 2011, pp = 684–692 The Doordarshan, state monopoly on television broadcast ended in the 1990s. Since then, satellite channels have increasingly shaped the popular culture of Indian society.{{sfn, Mehta, 2008, pp = 1–10 Today, television is the most penetrative media in India; industry estimates indicate that {{As of, 2012, lc=y there are over 554 million TV consumers, 462 million with satellite or cable connections compared to other forms of mass media such as the press (350 million), radio (156 million) or internet (37 million).{{sfn, Media Research Users Council 2012


Society

{{Main, Culture of India {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=220, image_style = border:none;, align = left , image1=Muslims praying in mosque in Srinagar, Kashmir.jpg, caption1=Muslims offer ''Salah, namaz'' at a mosque in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir. {{multiple image, perrow=1, total_width=200, image_style = border:none;, align = left , image1=Gomateswara, Shravanabelagola.jpg, caption1=A Jain woman washes the feet of Bahubali Gomateswara at Shravanabelagola, Karnataka. Traditional Indian society is sometimes defined by social hierarchy. The Caste system in India, Indian caste system embodies much of the social stratification and many of the social restrictions found on the Indian subcontinent. Social classes are defined by thousands of endogamous hereditary groups, often termed as ''jātis'', or "castes".{{sfn, Schwartzberg, 2011 India declared
untouchability Untouchability is the practice of ostracising a group of people regarded as 'untouchables', as ascribed in the Hindu Hindus (; ) are persons who regard themselves as culturally, ethnically, or religiously adhering to aspects of Hindu ...
to be illegal in 1947 and has since enacted other anti-discriminatory laws and social welfare initiatives. Family values are important in the Indian tradition, and multi-generational patrilineal joint family, joint families have been the norm in India, though nuclear family, nuclear families are becoming common in urban areas.{{sfn, Makar, 2007 An overwhelming majority of Indians, with their consent, have Arranged marriage in the Indian subcontinent, their marriages arranged by their parents or other family elders.{{sfn, Medora, 2003 Marriage is thought to be for life,{{sfn, Medora, 2003 and the divorce rate is extremely low,{{sfn, Jones, Ramdas, 2005, p = 111 with less than one in a thousand marriages ending in divorce. Child marriages are common, especially in rural areas; many women wed before reaching 18, which is their legal marriageable age.{{sfn, Cullen-Dupont, 2009, p = 96 Female infanticide in India, and lately female foeticide in India, female foeticide, have created skewed gender ratios; the number of missing women in the country quadrupled from 15 million to 63 million in the 50-year period ending in 2014, faster than the population growth during the same period, and constituting 20 percent of India's female electorate.{{cite news , url=https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/indias-missing-women/article5670801.ece , title=India's missing women, newspaper=The Hindu, date=10 February 2014, last1=Kapoor, first1=Mudit, last2=Shamika, first2=Ravi , access-date= 17 November 2019 , quote=In the last 50 years of Indian democracy, the absolute number of missing women has increased fourfold from 15 million to 68 million. This is not merely a reflection of the growth in the overall population, but, rather, of the fact that this dangerous trend has worsened with time. As a percentage of the female electorate, missing women have gone up significantly — from 13 per cent to approximately 20 per cent Accord to an Indian government study, an additional 21 million girls are unwanted and do not receive adequate care.{{cite web , url=https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jan/30/more-than-63-million-women-missing-in-india-statistics-show , title=More than 63 million women 'missing' in India, statistics show , newspaper=The Associated Press via The Guardian , date= 30 January 2018 , author= , access-date= November 17, 2019 Quote: "More than 63 million women are “missing” statistically across India, and more than 21 million girls are unwanted by their families, government officials say. The skewed ratio of men to women is largely the result of sex-selective abortions, and better nutrition and medical care for boys, according to the government’s annual economic survey, which was released on Monday. In addition, the survey found that “families where a son is born are more likely to stop having children than families where a girl is born”. Despite a government ban on sex-selective foeticide, the practice remains commonplace in India, the result of a preference for boys in a patriarchal society.{{cite web , url=https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/08/15/a-generation-of-girls-is-missing-in-india/ , title=A Generation of Girls Is Missing in India – Sex-selective abortion fuels a cycle of patriarchy and abuse., newspaper=Foreign Policy , first=Ira, last=Trivedi , date=August 15, 2019 , access-date= 17 November 2019 Quote: "Although it has been illegal nationwide for doctors to disclose the sex of a fetus since the 1994 Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act, the ease of ordering cheap and portable ultrasound machines, especially online, has kept the practice of sex-selective abortions alive." The payment of Dowry system in India, dowry, although Dowry law in India, illegal, remains widespread across class lines. Dowry deaths, Deaths resulting from dowry, mostly from bride burning, are on the rise, despite stringent anti-dowry laws. Many Public holidays in India, Indian festivals are religious in origin. The best known include: Diwali, Ganesh Chaturthi, Thai Pongal, Holi, Durga Puja, Eid ul-Fitr, Bakr-Id, Christmas worldwide#India, Christmas, and Vaisakhi.


Education

{{Main, Education in India, Literacy in India, History of education in the Indian subcontinent In the 2011 census, about 73% of the population was literate, with 81% for men and 65% for women. This compares to 1981 when the respective rates were 41%, 53% and 29%. In 1951 the rates were 18%, 27% and 9%. In 1921 the rates 7%, 12% and 2%. In 1891 they were 5%, 9% and 1%, According to Latika Chaudhary, in 1911 there were under three primary schools for every ten villages. Statistically, more caste and religious diversity reduced private spending. Primary schools taught literacy, so local diversity limited its growth. Education system of India is the world's second largest higher education System. India had over 900 universities, 40,000 colleges{{cite web , url=https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/hrd-to-increase-nearly-25-pc-seats-in-varsities-to-implement-10-pc-quota-for-poor-in-gen-category/articleshow/67545006.cms , title=HRD to increase nearly 25 pc seats in varsities to implement 10 pc quota for poor in gen category , newspaper=The Economic Times , date=15 January 2019, access-date=October 18, 2021 and 1.5 million schools. In India's higher education system, a significant number of seats are reserved under Reservation in India, affirmative action policies for the historically disadvantaged. In recent decades India's improved education system is often cited as one of the main contributors to its economic development in India, economic development.{{Cite web, url=http://www.sify.com/finance/fullstory.php?id=1475704, archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20140220170624/http://www.sify.com/finance/india-achieves-27-decline-in-poverty-news-news-jegxaXgfcab.html, title=India achieves 27% decline in poverty, work=Press Trust of India via Sify.com, date=12 September 2008, archive-date=20 February 2014, access-date=October 18, 2021, url-status=dead


Clothing

{{main, Clothing in India {{multiple image, perrow = 2, total_width = 500 , align = right , image_style = border:none; , image1 = India School.jpg , caption1 = Women in sari at an adult literacy class in Tamil Nadu , image2 = Water pump, Varanasi (15563170660) Cropped.jpg , caption2 = A man in dhoti and wearing a woollen shawl, in Varanasi From ancient times until the advent of the modern, the most widely worn traditional dress in India was draped.{{harvnb, Tarlo, 1996, p=26 For women it took the form of a sari, a single piece of cloth many yards long. The sari was traditionally wrapped around the lower body and the shoulder. In its modern form, it is combined with an underskirt, or Indian Petticoat#Asian petticoats, petticoat, and tucked in the waist band for more secure fastening. It is also commonly worn with an Indian blouse, or choli, which serves as the primary upper-body garment, the sari's end—passing over the shoulder—serving to cover the midriff and obscure the upper body's contours. For men, a similar but shorter length of cloth, the dhoti, has served as a lower-body garment.{{harvnb, Tarlo, 1996, pp=26–28 {{multiple image, perrow = 2/2, total_width = 440 , align = left , image_style = border:none; , image1 = Strolling_Shoppers_in_Paltan_Bazaar.jpg , caption1 = Women (from left to right) in churidars and kameez (with back to the camera), jeans and sweater, and pink Shalwar kameez; , image2 = Girls in Kargil.jpg , caption2 = Girls in the
Kashmir Kashmir, ks, کٔشیٖر, kaśīr () is the northernmost geographical region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term "Kashmir" denoted only the Kashmir Valley The Kashmir Valley, also known as the ''Vale ...

Kashmir
region in embroidered hijab , image3 = Happy Tailor (5274603493).jpg , caption3 = A tailor in pagri (turban), pagri and kameez working outside a fabric shop The use of stitched clothes became widespread after Muslim rule was established at first by the Delhi sultanate (ca 1300 CE) and then continued by the
Mughal Empire The Mughal, Mogul, or Moghul Empire was an early modern The early modern period of modern history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, humanity's past. It is understood through archaeology, anthropology, ge ...
(ca 1525 CE).{{citation , last=Alkazi , first=Roshen , editor=Rahman, Abdur , title=India's Interaction with China, Central and West Asia , chapter-url=https://books.google.com/books?id=NZvpAAAAMAAJ , year=2002 , publisher=Oxford University Press , isbn=978-0-19-565789-0 , pages=464–484 , chapter=Evolution of Indian Costume as a result of the links between Central Asia and India in ancient and medieval times Among the garments introduced during this time and still commonly worn are: the shalwars and pyjamas, both styles of trousers, and the tunics kurta and kameez. In southern India, the traditional draped garments were to see much longer continuous use. Shalwars are atypically wide at the waist but narrow to a cuffed bottom. They are held up by a drawstring, which causes them to become pleated around the waist.{{citation, last1=Stevenson, first1=Angus, last2=Waite, first2=Maurice, title=Concise Oxford English Dictionary: Book & CD-ROM Set, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=4XycAQAAQBAJ&pg=PA1272, year=2011, publisher=Oxford University Press, access-date=3 September 2019, isbn=978-0-19-960110-3, page=1272 The pants can be wide and baggy, or they can be cut quite narrow, on the Grain (textile)#Bias, bias, in which case they are called churidars. When they are ordinarily wide at the waist and their bottoms are hemmed but not cuffed, they are called pyjamas. The kameez is a long shirt or tunic,{{citation, last1=Stevenson, first1=Angus, last2=Waite, first2=Maurice, title=Concise Oxford English Dictionary: Book & CD-ROM Set, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=4XycAQAAQBAJ&pg=PA774, year=2011, publisher=Oxford University Press, isbn=978-0-19-960110-3, page=774 its side seams left open below the waist-line. The kurta is traditionally collarless and made of cotton or silk; it is worn plain or with embroidered decoration, such as chikan (embroidery), chikan; and typically falls to either just above or just below the wearer's knees.{{citation, last=Shukla, first=Pravina, title=The Grace of Four Moons: Dress, Adornment, and the Art of the Body in Modern India, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=MlObCgAAQBAJ&pg=PA71, year=2015, publisher=Indiana University Press, isbn=978-0-253-02121-2, page=71 In the last 50 years, fashions have changed a great deal in India. Increasingly, in urban northern India, the sari is no longer the apparel of everyday wear, though they remain popular on formal occasions.{{citation, last=Dwyer, first=Rachel, author-link=Rachel Dwyer, title=Bollywood's India: Hindi Cinema as a Guide to Contemporary India, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=DqwBBQAAQBAJ&pg=PA244, year=2014, publisher=Reaktion Books, isbn=978-1-78023-304-8, pages=244–245 The traditional shalwar kameez is rarely worn by younger urban women, who favour churidars or jeans. In white-collar office settings, ubiquitous air conditioning allows men to wear sports jackets year-round. For weddings and formal occasions, men in the middle- and upper classes often wear bandgala, or short Nehru jackets, with pants, with the groom and his groomsmen sporting sherwanis and churidars. The dhoti, once the universal garment of Hindu males, the wearing of which in the homespun and handwoven khadi allowed Gandhi to bring Indian nationalism to the millions,{{citation, last=Dwyer, first=Rachel, author-link=Rachel Dwyer, editor=Stella Bruzzi, Pamela Church Gibson, title=Fashion Cultures: Theories, Explorations and Analysis, chapter-url=https://books.google.com/books?id=FYGMAQAAQBAJ&pg=PA178, year=2013, publisher=Routledge, isbn=978-1-136-29537-9, pages=178–189, chapter=Bombay Ishtyle is seldom seen in the cities.


Cuisine

{{main, Indian cuisine {{multiple image, perrow = 2/2/2, total_width = 440 , align = right , image_style = border:none; , image4 = Vindalho.jpg , caption4 = Pork vindaloo from Goa , image3 = Hyderabadi Chicken Biryani.jpg , caption3 = Chicken Hyderabadi biryani, biryani from Hyderabad , image6 = Odia Mutton Curry (Mansha Tarkari) Rotated.jpg , caption6 = Mutton curry, Railway mutton curry from Odisha , image2 = Assamese Thali.jpg , caption2 = An Assamese thali , image1 = South Indian Thali Cropped.jpg , caption1 = South Indian vegetarian thali, or platter , image5 = Tiffin wallah lunch.jpg , caption5 = Home-cooked lunch delivered to the workplace by the Dabbawala. The foundation of a typical Indian meal is a cereal cooked in a plain fashion and complemented with flavourful savoury dishes.{{citation, last=Davidson, first=Alan, title=The Oxford Companion to Food, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=RL6LAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA409, year=2014, publisher=Oxford University Press, isbn=978-0-19-967733-7, page=409 The cooked cereal could be steamed rice; chapati, a thin unleavened bread made from wheat flour, or occasionally cornmeal, and griddle-cooked dry;{{citation, last=Davidson, first=Alan, title=The Oxford Companion to Food, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=RL6LAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA161, year=2014, publisher=Oxford University Press, isbn=978-0-19-967733-7, page=161, quote=Chapatis are made from finely milled whole-wheat flour, called chapati flour or atta, and water. The dough is rolled into thin rounds which vary in size from region to region and then cooked without fat or oil on a slightly curved griddle called a tava. the idli, a steamed breakfast cake, or dosa, a griddled pancake, both leavened and made from a batter of rice- and Vigna mungo, gram meal.{{citation, last1=Tamang, first1=J. P., last2=Fleet, first2=G. H., editor1-last=Satyanarayana, editor1-first=T., editor2-last=Kunze, editor2-first=G., chapter=Yeasts Diversity in Fermented Foods and Beverages, title=Yeast Biotechnology: Diversity and Applications, publisher=Springer, page=180, chapter-url=https://books.google.com/books?id=jLFmiervaqMC&pg=PA180, year=2009, isbn=9781402082924, quote=Idli is an acid-leavened and steamed cake made by bacterial fermentation of a thick batter made from coarsely ground rice and dehulled black gram. Idli cakes are soft, moist and spongy, have desirable sour flavour, and is eaten as breakfast in South India. Dosa batter is very similar to idli batter, except that both the rice and black gram are finely grounded. The batter is thinner than that of idli and is fried as a thin, crisp pancake and eaten directly in South India. The savoury dishes might include lentils, pulses and vegetables commonly spiced with ginger root, ginger and garlic, but also with a combination of spices that may include coriander, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, cardamon and others as informed by culinary conventions. They might also include poultry, fish, or meat dishes. In some instances, the ingredients might be mixed during the process of cooking.{{citation, last=Jhala, first=Angma Day, title=Royal Patronage, Power and Aesthetics in Princely India, publisher=Routledge, page=70, year=2015, isbn=9781317316572, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=WGpECgAAQBAJ&pg=PA70, quote=With the ascent of the Mughal Empire in sixteenth-century India, Turkic, Persian and Afghan traditions of dress, 'architecture and cuisine' were adopted by non-Muslim indigenous elites in South Asia. In this manner, Central Asian cooking merged with older traditions within the subcontinent, to create such signature dishes as biryani (a fusion of the Persian pilau and the spice-laden dishes of Hindustan), and the Kashmiri meat stew of Rogan Josh. It not only generated new dishes and entire cuisines, but also fostered novel modes of eating. Such newer trends included the consumption of Persian condiments, which relied heavily on almonds, pastries and quince jams, alongside Indian achars made from sweet limes, green vegetables and curds as side relishes during Mughlai meals. A platter, or thali, used for eating usually has a central place reserved for the cooked cereal, and peripheral ones for the flavourful accompaniments, which are often served in small bowls. The cereal and its accompaniments are eaten simultaneously rather than a piecemeal manner. This is accomplished by mixing—for example of rice and lentils—or folding, wrapping, scooping or dipping—such as chapati and cooked vegetables or lentils. {{multiple image, perrow = 2, total_width = 220 , align = left , image_style = border:none; , image1 = Making Khameeri Roti in Tandoor in Turkman Gate Old Delhi.webm , caption1 = A tandoor chef in the Turkman Gate, Old Delhi, makes Khameeri roti (a Muslim-influenced style of Bread#Leavening, leavened bread).{{citation, last=Panjabi, first=Camellia, title=The Great Curries of India, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=TYCFJMLZ_-4C&pg=PA158, year=1995, publisher=Simon and Schuster, isbn=978-0-684-80383-8, pages=158–, quote=The Muslim influenced breads of India are leavened, like ''naan'', ''Khamiri roti'', ... India has distinctive vegetarian cuisines, each a feature of the geographical and cultural histories of its adherents.{{citation, last=Davidson, first=Alan, title=The Oxford Companion to Food, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=RL6LAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA410, year=2014, publisher=Oxford University Press, isbn=978-0-19-967733-7, page=410 The appearance of ''ahimsa'', or the avoidance of violence toward all forms of life in many religious orders early in Indian history, especially Upanishads, Upanishadic Hinduism,
Buddhism Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and ...

Buddhism
and
Jainism Jainism (), traditionally known as ''Jain Dharma'', is an ancient Indian religion. It is one of the oldest Indian religions. The three main pillars of Jainism are ''Ahimsa in Jainism, ahiṃsā'' (non-violence), ''anekāntavāda'' (non-absolut ...

Jainism
, is thought to have contributed to the predominance of vegetarianism among a large segment of India's Hindu population, especially in southern India, Gujarat, the
Hindi Hindi (Devanagari: , हिंदी, ISO 15919, ISO: ), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi (Devanagari: , ISO 15919, ISO: ), is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in Hindi Belt, North India. Hindi has been described as a Standard la ...

Hindi
-speaking belt of north-central India, as well as among Jains. Although meat is eaten widely in India, the proportional consumption of meat in the overall diet is low.{{citation, last1=Sahakian, first1=Marlyne, last2=Saloma, first2=Czarina, last3=Erkman, first3=Suren, title=Food Consumption in the City: Practices and patterns in urban Asia and the Pacific, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=TBIxDQAAQBAJ&pg=PT50, year=2016, publisher=Taylor & Francis, isbn=978-1-317-31050-1, page=50 Unlike China, which has increased its per capita meat consumption substantially in its years of increased economic growth, in India the strong dietary traditions have contributed to dairy, rather than meat, becoming the preferred form of animal protein consumption.{{citation, author1=OECD, author2=Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, title=OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2018–2027, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=JuBiDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA21, year=2018, publisher=OECD Publishing, isbn=978-92-64-06203-0, page=21 The most significant import of cooking techniques into India during the last millennium occurred during the
Mughal Empire The Mughal, Mogul, or Moghul Empire was an early modern The early modern period of modern history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, humanity's past. It is understood through archaeology, anthropology, ge ...
. Dishes such as the pilaf,{{citation, last=Roger, first=Delphine , editor=Kiple, Kenneth F. , editor2=Ornelas, Kriemhild Coneè , title=The Cambridge World History of Food, chapter-url=https://books.google.com/books?id=Vr2qnK_QOuAC&pg=PA1140, volume=2, year=2000, publisher=
Cambridge University Press Cambridge University Press (CUP) is the publishing business of the University of Cambridge , mottoeng = Literal: From here, light and sacred draughts. Non literal: From this place, we gain enlightenment and precious knowled ...
, location=Cambridge and New York, isbn=978-0-521-40215-6, pages=1140–1150, chapter=The Middle East and South Asia (in Chapter: History and Culture of Food and Drink in Asia)
developed in the Abbasid caliphate,{{citation, last=Sengupta, first=Jayanta , editor=Freedman, Paul , editor2=Chaplin, Joyce E. , editor3=Albala, Ken , title=Food in Time and Place: The American Historical Association Companion to Food History, chapter-url=https://books.google.com/books?id=SNQkDQAAQBAJ&pg=PA74, year=2014, publisher=University of California Press, isbn=978-0-520-27745-8, page=74, chapter=India and cooking techniques such as the marinating of meat in yogurt, spread into northern India from regions to its northwest.{{citation, last=Collingham, first=Elizabeth M., title=Curry: A Tale of Cooks and Conquerors, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=pH88DwAAQBAJ&pg=PA25, year=2007, publisher=Oxford University Press , isbn=978-0-19-532001-5, page=25 In the food served in Indian restaurants worldwide the diversity of Indian food has been partially concealed by the dominance of Punjabi cuisine. The popularity of tandoori chicken—cooked in the tandoor oven, which had traditionally been used for baking bread in the rural Punjab and the Delhi region, especially among Muslims, but which is originally from
Central Asia Central Asia is a region in Asia Asia () is 's largest and most populous , located primarily in the and . It shares the continental of with the continent of and the continental landmass of with both Europe and . Asia covers an area ...

Central Asia
—dates to the 1950s, and was caused in large part by an entrepreneurial response among people from the Punjab who had been displaced by the 1947
partition of India The partition of India was the division of British India The Provinces of India, earlier Presidencies of British India and still earlier, Presidency towns, were the administrative divisions of British governance in the Indian subcont ...

partition of India
.


Sports and recreation

{{Main, Sport in India {{multiple image , perrow = 1 , total_width = 450 , image_style = border:none; , align = left, , image1 = Sachin Tendulkar about to score 14000th run in test cricket.jpg , caption1 = Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar about to score a record 14,000 runs in test cricket while playing against Australia in Bangalore, 2010. , direction = , alt1 = Cricket is the most popular sport in India. Major domestic competitions include the Indian Premier League, which is the most-watched cricket league in the world and ranks sixth among all sports leagues. Other professional leagues include the Indian Super League, pro football and the Pro Kabaddi League, pro Kabaddi leagues. India has won two Cricket World Cup, Cricket world cups and has eight field hockey gold medals in the Field hockey at the Summer Olympics, summer olympics Several traditional indigenous sports remain fairly popular, such as ''kabaddi'', ''kho kho'', ''pehlwani'' and ''gilli-danda''. Some of the earliest forms of Asian Indian martial arts, martial arts, such as ''Kalarippayattu'', ''musti yuddha'',{{Dubious, date=December 2021 ''silambam'', and ''marma adi'', originated in India. Chess, commonly held to have History of chess#India, originated in India as ''chaturanga, chaturaṅga'', is regaining widespread popularity with the rise in the number of Indian Grandmaster (chess), grandmasters.{{sfn, Wolpert, 2003, p = 2{{sfn, Rediff 2008 b ''Pachisi'', from which parcheesi derives, was played on a giant marble court by
Akbar Abu'l-Fath Jalal-ud-din Muhammad Akbar (Persian Persian may refer to: * People and things from Iran, historically called ''Persia'' in the English language ** Persians, Persian people, the majority ethnic group in Iran, not to be conflated ...

Akbar
.{{sfn, Binmore, 2007, p = 98 The improved results garnered by the India Davis Cup team, Indian Davis Cup team and other :Indian tennis players, Indian tennis players in the early 2010s have made tennis increasingly popular in the country.{{sfn, The Wall Street Journal 2009 India has a :Indian sport shooters, comparatively strong presence in shooting sports, and has won several medals at the Olympic Games, Olympics, the ISSF World Shooting Championships, World Shooting Championships, and the Commonwealth Games.{{sfn, British Broadcasting Corporation 2010 b{{sfn, The Times of India 2010 Other sports in which Indians have succeeded internationally include badminton{{sfn, British Broadcasting Corporation 2010 a (Saina Nehwal and P. V. Sindhu, P V Sindhu are two of the top-ranked female badminton players in the world), boxing,{{sfn, Mint 2010 and wrestling.{{sfn, Xavier, 2010 Football in India, Football is popular in West Bengal, Goa, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and the Seven Sister States, north-eastern states.{{sfn, Majumdar, Bandyopadhyay, 2006, pp = 1–5 {{multiple image , perrow = 1 , total_width = 220 , image_style = border:none; , align = right , image1 = Filles jouant à la marelle, Jaura, Inde.jpg , caption1 = Girls play hopscotch in Jaora, Madhya Pradesh. Hopscotch has been commonly played by girls in rural India.{{citation, last1=Srinivasan, first1=Radhika, last2=Jermyn, first2=Leslie, last3=Lek, first3=Hui Hui, title=India, url=https://books.google.com/books?id=zoVby4OJWhYC&pg=PA109, year=2001, publisher=Times Books International, isbn=978-981-232-184-8, page=109 Quote: "Girls in India usually play jump rope, or hopscotch, and five stones, tossing the stones up in the air and catching them in many different ways ... the coconut-plucking contests, groundnut-eating races, ... of rural India." , direction = , alt1 = India has hosted or co-hosted several international sporting events: the 1951 Asian Games, 1951 and 1982 Asian Games; the 1987 Cricket World Cup, 1987, 1996 Cricket World Cup, 1996, and 2011 Cricket World Cup tournaments; the 2003 Afro-Asian Games; the 2006 ICC Champions Trophy; the 2009 BWF World Championships, 2009 World Badminton Championships; the 2010 Men's Hockey World Cup, 2010 Hockey World Cup; the 2010 Commonwealth Games; and the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup. Major international sporting events held annually in India include the Maharashtra Open, the Mumbai Marathon, the Delhi Half Marathon, and the Indian Masters. The first Formula One, Formula 1 Indian Grand Prix featured in late 2011 but has been discontinued from the F1 season calendar since 2014.{{sfn, Dehejia, 2011 India has traditionally been the dominant country at the South Asian Games. An example of this dominance is the Basketball at the South Asian Games, basketball competition where the India national basketball team, Indian team won three out of four tournaments to date.{{cite news , title=Basketball team named for 11th South Asian Games , url=https://nation.com.pk/02-Jan-2010/basketball-team-named-for-11th-south-asian-games , access-date=23 November 2019 , work=The Nation (Pakistan), The Nation , publisher=Nawaiwaqt Group , date=2 January 2010 , archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20121202035448/http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/lahore/02-Jan-2010/Basketball-team-named-for-11th-South-Asian-Games , archive-date=2 December 2012 , url-status=live {{Clear


See also

{{Portal, India, Asia * Outline of India {{Clear


Notes

{{notes, refs={{efn, name=remaining religions, Besides specific religions, the last two categories in the 2011 Census were "Other religions and persuasions" (0.65%) and "Religion not stated" (0.23%)., 33em


References

{{Reflist, 30em


Bibliography

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