The Republic of India is a country that occupies a greater part of the Indian subcontinent. It borders Pakistan in the northwest, the People's Republic of China, Nepal, and Bhutan in the north, and Bangladesh and Myanmar in the east. India's coastline stretches for over seven thousand kilometers. Its neighbours in the Indian Ocean are the island nations of the Maldives in the southwest, Sri Lanka in the south, and Indonesia in the southeast. India is the second most populated country in the world, with a population of over one billion and is the seventh largest country by geographical area. It is a constitutional republic consisting of twenty nine States and seven union territories. The word India derives from the Old Persian cognate for the Sanskrit word Sindhu, the Indus river. The Constitution of India also recognizes Bhārat listen (help·info) as an official name with equal status.
A centre of important historic trade routes, India is the home to some of the most ancient civilisations. India is the birthplace to four world religions:Jainism, Sikhism, Buddhism and Hinduism. It also has the largest Muslim population in the world after Indonesia and Pakistan. Hinduism is the major religion followed in India. India is a secular country. India was a former colony of the British Empire under the British Raj before gaining independence on 15 August 1947. The country has witnessed significant economic and military growth after the liberalization of the Indian economy. India is also well known for upholding the concept of peace, as was demonstrated by its peaceful method of freedom struggle.
National Anthem of India
West Bengal (Bengali: পশ্চিমবঙ্গ, Poshchimbôŋgo) is a state in eastern India. With Bangladesh, which lies on its eastern border, the state forms the ethno-linguistic region of Bengal. To its northeast lie the states of Assam and Sikkim and the country Bhutan, and to its southwest, the state of Orissa. To the west it borders the state of Jharkhand and Bihar, and to the northwest, Nepal.
The region that is now West Bengal was a part of a number of empires and kingdoms during the past two millennia. The British East India Company cemented their hold on the region following the Battle of Plassey in 1757 CE, and the city of Kolkata, then Calcutta, served for many years as the capital of British India. A hotbed of the Indian independence movement through the early 20th century, Bengal was divided in 1947 into two separate entities, West Bengal - a state of India, and East Pakistan belonging to the new nation of Pakistan.
Following India's independence in 1947, West Bengal's economic and political theatres were dominated for many decades by intellectual Marxism, Naxalite movements and trade unionism. From late 1990s, economic rejuvenation led to a spurt in the state's economic and industrial growth. An agriculture-dependent state, West Bengal occupies only 2.7% of the India's land area, though it supports over 7.8% of Indian population, and is the most densely populated state in India. West Bengal has been ruled by the CPI(M)-led Left Front for three decades, making it the world's longest-running democratically-elected communist government. Many notable poets, writers, artists and performers are native to West Bengal. (more...)
India's national fruit is Mango (Mangifera indica).
India is the birthplace of four of the world's major religions; Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism and Sikhism.
It is one of the few countries in the world that gained independence without violence.
India is the world's largest democracy.
The number zero was invented in India by Aryabhata, a mathematician and astronomer.
Chess is believed to have originated in India during the Gupta Empire.
One of the largest employers in the world is the Indian Railways, employing over a million.
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