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The Indus Valley civilization, one of the oldest in the world, dates back at least 5,000 years. Aryan tribes from the northwest infiltrated onto Indian lands about 1500 B.C.; their merger with the earlier Dravidian inhabitants created the classical Indian culture. Arab incursions starting in the 8th century and Turkish in the 12th were followed by those of European traders, beginning in the late 15th century. By the 19th century, Britain had assumed political control of virtually all Indian lands. Indian armed forces in the British army played a vital role in both World Wars. Nonviolent resistance to British colonialism led by Mohandas GANDHI and Jawaharlal NEHRU brought independence in 1947. The subcontinent was divided into the secular state of India and the smaller Muslim state of Pakistan. A third war between the two countries in 1971 resulted in East Pakistan becoming the separate nation of Bangladesh. Despite impressive gains in economic investment and output, India faces pressing problems such as the ongoing dispute with Pakistan over Kashmir, significant overpopulation, environmental degradation, extensive poverty, and ethnic and religious strife.

Languages & Population

Approximate Population: 1,129,866,154 (July 2007 est.)

Nationality (Noun): Indian(s)

Nationality (Adjective): Indian

Official Language(s): Hindi, Bengali, Tamil, Urdu, Gujarati, Punjabi

Major Languages Spoken: Aramaic, Bengali, Dhivehi, English, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Oriya, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, Dzongkha

Map of India

Country Facts

Country Name (long form): Republic of India

Country Name (short form): India

Country Name (local long form): Republic of India/Bharatiya Ganarajya

Country Name (local short form): India/Bharat

Name of Capital: New Delhi

UTC Time Difference (from capital): UTC+5.5 (10.5 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Countries Near by, and Bordering India: Burma, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China

Land Area: 2973190 sq km

Water Area: 314400 sq km

Comparative Area: slightly more than one-third the size of the US

Total Land Boundry: 14,103 km

Coastline: 7,000 km

National Holiday: Republic Day, 26 January (1950)

International Phone Code: 91

Currency Code: Indian rupee (INR)

Internet Country Code: .in

US Embassy Location: Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110021

US Embassy Mailing Address: use embassy street address


India flag

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