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About India

Culture The sum total of Indian culture and what it stands for today is available to us in many ways - the most important and vital being in our arts - visual and performing. India is a land of many languages, arts, crafts, performing styles and music. It is a thriving land which has assimilated ancient knowledge and uses it in day to day life. Customs and habits are very important to the individual, the family and society as a whole.
India - what we are known for
  • The digit "0" and the number system.
  • Chess
  • Algebra, trigonometry and calculus
  • The decimal point system
  • The game of Snakes and Ladders
  • The value of pi
  • Noble prizes in Literature, Physics, Economics, Peace and Medicine.
  • The study and knowledge of medicine and surgery
  • One of the largest diamond and precious stone sources to the world
In its 10,000 years of history, India has never invaded any nation despite being conquered by the Mughals and British alike. Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism have their roots in India and are followed by 25 percent of the world's population.
India is a land of incredible diversity - both culturally and physically. Indian History in many ways is a microcosm of human history itself. Spanning back to the beginning of human civilization, its history is one punctuated by constant integration with migrating people and their influence.
The History of India begins with the Indus Valley Civilization - one of the richest and the most ancient civilizations in the world. Indus Valley Civilization and the coming of Aryans are described as the pre-Vedic and Vedic periods.
The Vedic Age contributed immensely in the field of Indian literature and philosophy, through its various treatises and epics and laid the foundation of the Hinduism religion.
In the 4th century, India was fragmented into a several smaller kingdoms. The Vedic age is followed by the rise of Kingdoms of the Mauryas, Guptas, and Deccan. The Gupta period has been described as the golden age of Indian history. In South India, great empires rose, entirely independent from those of the north.
The kingdoms were invaded by stronger rulers, chief among them being the Mughals. The Mughal Empire expanded to cover almost the entire length and breadth of the Indian subcontinent and the rule lasted for 332 years. Finally, the Mughals were overthrown by the British armies in the year 1857.European Influence
Attracted by the wealth of minerals, spices and culture, India was a target of European conqourers be it the Portugese, the Dutch, the French or the British.
The Portuguese were the first Europeans to settle in Goa, western coast of India. They arrived before the Mughals. The Dutch East India Company followed the Portuguese and established spice trade and factories in south. In 1613, the British East India Company started its first trading post in Gujarat. In 1644, the French established trade with India. Pondicherry in the south was the hub of French settlements.
Attracted by the wealth, in terms of minerals, spices and culture, India has been the target for the invasion and colonization by the Europeans.
The Portuguese were the first Europeans to settle in west of India, in Goa. They arrived before the Mughals. The Dutch East India Company followed the Portugese and established spice trade and factories in south. In 1613, the British East India Company started its first trading post in Gujarat. In 1644, the French established trade with India. Pondicherry in the south was the hub of French settlements.
In 1757, at the Battle of Plassey, the British East India Company established their political sovereignty in India which marked an important step towards the eventual British dominance of the country.
Sepoy Mutiny or the first major Indian rebellion against the British after the Battle of Plassey took place in 1857, but the rebellion was crushed by the British and thus began the 300 years of British rule in India.
Eventually the socio- religious movements brought forth by various social reformers all over the country, inspired and invoked the spirit of patriotism among the Indian masses. There were many leaders to work towards the freedom of the country. The most noted among them is of course the Mahatma Gandhi or the Father of the Nation who transformed the Indian National Congress political party into a mass movement to campaign against the British colonial rule. It was Mahatma Gandhi through his Ahimsa movement or adherence to non violence(which is the core of Hinduism) that after several years of struggle, the British decided to quit India.
On 15th of August, 1947, India became completely independent from colonial rule, ending the 350 years of British presence in India. On January 26, 1950 India became a republic.
The country has been constantly invaded and the influence of the invasions resulted in certain positive facets in terms of creativity and aesthetics. With the emergence of the Mughals in the 16th century, there was a remarkable blend of Indian, Persian and Central Asian influences which were manifested in an impressive legacy. The magnificent palaces, forts, tombs and landscaped gardens-including the magnificent edifice, the Taj Mahal were all built during the Mughal rule.
India is as diverse as its people. Even today India remains one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world. India's diversity is visible in its people, religions, climate, languages, customs, and traditions which differ from place to place within the country, yet this diversity forms a composite whole.
The culture of India is an amalgamation of all the diverse cultures and traditions spread all over the country, that are millennia’s old. It has been shaped by its long history, unique geography, and the absorption of customs, traditions and ideas over the changing times, yet retaining the essence that was once established.
Location: Southern Asia, bordering the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal, between Burma and Pakistan
Geographic Coordinates: 21 00 N, 77 00 E
Area: Total: 3,287,263 sq km
Country comparison to the world: 7
Land: 3,287,590 sq km
Water: 314,400 sq km
Coastline: 7,517 km
Terrain: upland plain (Deccan Plateau) in south, flat to rolling plain along the Ganges, deserts in west, Himalayas in north
Lowest point: IIndian Ocean 0 m
Highest point: Kanchenjunga 8,598 m
Population: 1,278,119,445 (1.27 billion) As of March 1, 2015
0-14 years: 28.5% (male 187,016,401/female 165,048,695) 15-24 years: 18.1% (male 118,696,540/female 105,342,764) 25-54 years: 40.6% (male 258,202,535/female 243,293,143) 55-64 years: 7% (male 43,625,668/female 43,175,111) 65 years and over: 5.8% (male 34,133,175/female 37,810,599) (2014 est.)
Language: Hindi 41%, Bengali 8.1%, Telugu 7.2%, Marathi 7%, Tamil 5.9%, Urdu 5%, Gujarati 4.5%, Kannada 3.7%, Malayalam 3.2%, Oriya 3.2%, Punjabi 2.8%, Assamese 1.3%, Maithili 1.2%, other 5.9%
Literacy rate 65.46% (women) and 82.14% (men)
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