India is a country in South Asia.
The official name is the Republic of India.
India is bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, and the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west; China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north; and Bangladesh and Myanmar to the east.
It is the 7th largest country in the world, with a total area of 3,287,263 square kilometers (1,269,219 square miles).
As of October 2019, the population of India was estimated to be 1.35 billion people. It is the 2nd most populous country, and the most populous democracy in the world.
India has two official languages: Hindi and English.
New Delhi is the capital of India and seat of all three branches of the Government of India. The foundation stone of the city was laid by Emperor George V during the Delhi Durbar of 1911. It was designed by British architects, Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker. The new capital was inaugurated on 13 February 1931, by Viceroy and Governor-General of India Lord Irwin.
The geography of India is extremely diverse, with landscape ranging from snow-capped mountain ranges to deserts, plains, hills and plateaus.
The Himalayas form the highest mountain range in the world, and slope southward into a large fertile plain that covers much of India. To the west of the country is the Thar Desert, which consists of a mix of rocky and sandy desert.
India’s highest point is Kanchenjunga which rises 8,598 meters (28,208 feet) above sea level. It is the third highest mountain in the world.
India’s coastline measures 7,517 kilometers (4,700 miles) in length.
Numerous rivers drain the land, and without question, the Ganges is the heartbeat of India and one of the most significant rivers on the planet. It flows 2,525 kilometers (1,569 miles) from the Himalaya mountains to the Bay of Bengal in northern India and Bangladesh.
India has 35 UNESCO world heritage sites.
Perhaps India’s most recognizable building, the Taj Mahal is also the world’s most famous testimony to the power of love. It is an ivory-white marble mausoleum on the south bank of the Yamuna river in the Indian city of Agra. It was commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan (reigned from 1628 to 1658) to house the tomb of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal; it also houses the tomb of Shah Jahan himself. The tomb is the centrepiece of a 17-hectare (42-acre) complex, which includes a mosque and a guest house, and is set in formal gardens bounded on three sides by a crenellated wall. The Taj Mahal was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983.
Varanasi is a city on the banks of the river Ganga in southeastern Uttar Pradesh state, northern India. A major religious hub in India, it is the holiest of the seven sacred cities (Sapta Puri) in Hinduism and Jainism, and played an important role in the development of Buddhism and Ravidassia. Varanasi is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. Its early history is that of the first Aryan settlement in the middle Ganges valley.
The Gateway of India is an arch-monument built in the early twentieth-century located in the city of Mumbai. It was erected to commemorate the landing of the first British monarch in India; King-Emperor George V and Queen-Empress Mary’s arrival at Apollo Bunder, Mumbai (then Bombay) in December 1911.
The Red Fort is a historic fort in the city of Delhi. Every year on the Independence day of India (15 August), the Prime Minister hoists the Indian “tricolour flag” at the main gate of the fort and
delivers a nationally broadcast speech from its ramparts. On 15 August 1947, the first Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru raised the Indian national flag above the Lahore Gate. On each subsequent Independence Day, the prime minister has raised the flag and given a speech that is broadcast nationally. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007.
Amer Fort (often also spelt “Amber”) is a fort located in Amer, Rajasthan, India. The fort is originally believed to have been built by Raja Man Singh during 967 CE. Amer Fort, as it stands now, was built over the remnants of this earlier structure during the reign of Raja Man Singh, the Kachwaha King of Amber. Construction of the Fort was started in the year 1592. The structure was fully expanded by his descendant, Jai Singh I. In 2013, Amer Fort, along with five other forts of Rajasthan, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Golden Temple, also known as Sri Harmandir Sahib or Sri Darbar Sahib is located in the city of Amritsar in the state of Punjab, India. It is a place of great beauty and sublime peacefulness. The name Sri Harmandir Sahib literally means the “Temple of God”. It is the most important shrine of the Sikh religion.
The Qutb Minar, is a minaret that forms part of the Qutb complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Mehrauli area of Delhi, India. Qutb Minar is a 73-meter (239.5 feet) tall tapering tower of five storeys, with a 14.3 meters (47 feet) base diameter, reducing to 2.7 meters (9 feet) at the top of the peak. It contains a spiral staircase of 379 steps.
Ellora Caves is one of the largest rock-cut monastery-temple cave complexes in the world, featuring Buddhist, Hindu and Jain monuments, and artwork, dating from the 600–1000 AD period. There are over 100 caves at the site, all excavated from the basalt cliffs in the Charanandri Hills, 34 of which are open to public. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
India is the world’s largest, oldest, continuous civilization.
The name ‘India’ is derived from the River Indus, which originates from the Old Persian word Hinduš.
India never invaded any country in its history.
100 million people come to India’s Kumbh Mela festival, the world’s biggest gathering of humans and is visible from space.
According to the lunisolar Hindu calendar, there are six seasons in a year: Spring, Summer, Monsoon, Autumn, Winter and Prevernal.
India has the world’s lowest meat consumption per person.
75% of all the world’s spices come from India.
India has the majority of the world’s wild tigers, nearly 3,000.
The first diamonds were mined in Golconda in India around 4000–5000 years ago.
The earliest predecessor of chess originated in India, before the 6th century AD.