INDIA – Brief Description
Quotations for consideration:
“Ancient civilizations of Greece, Egypt and Rome have all disappeared from this world, but the elements of our civilization still continue. Although world events have been inimical to us for centuries, there is something in our civilization which has withstood these onslaughts”
– Allama Iqbal . Indian poet and philosopher
“India is not an under developed country, but rather, in the context of its history and cultural heritage, a highly developed one in an advanced state of decay”
– Shashi Tharoor.
India is a vast peninsular projection of the continent of Asia, south of the magnificent mountain ranges that stretch across the southern border of Tibet & Nepal, which together with Pakistan on the West and Bangladesh within its North East, forms the large Indian subcontinent. On its South and West and East is the Great Ocean. The Himalayan range stretches all along its north, also including its less elevated offshoots – the Patkai, Lushai and Chittagong Hills in the east, and the Sulaiman and Kirthar ranges to the west.These go down to the Sea and separate India from the wooded valley of the Irrawady, to the North East, and the hilly tableland of Iran, beyond the plains of Pakistan, on the North West. Land and Location The Vindhya Mountains cut almost across the country, from West to East, and form the historic boundary between North and South India. The Western Ghats from a ridge from North to South along the West Coast, while the Eastern Ghats form a lower and discontinuous chain along the East Coast.
India is favored with myriad rivers, some that originate from the melting snows & glaciers of the Himalayas and many others from the springs in the Vindhya and Aravali Mountains in middle India and from the Western Ghats in Peninsular India. All are refreshed by the Monsoon rains and over the millennia have made their valleys into fertile lands. Stretching as it does from near the equator to the cold regions of the Himalayas (Kanya Kumari to Kashmir and from Saurashtra on the Arabian Sea Coast in the West, across the desert sands of Rajasthan, to Mizoram in the East). India has a wide range of climatic variation within it and hence allows the growing of a great variety of fruits, vegetables and cereals etc. India also has extensive forests of varied nature and is hence home to a vast variety of flora and fauna. The central hilly region and the Ghats are rich in mineral resources. Till 1860’s India was the only source of diamonds to the world. Indian philosophy and culture has, since very ancient times, contributed a lot to the philosophy and cultures of the rest of the world, even as it has absorbed that of many invaders and many immigrants into its own. Even today India continues to offer different perspectives and insights to the world. India is indeed a ‘Blessed Land’ and it is now time for it to find appropriate solutions to its present problems, in a non violent manner, and to reclaim its rightful place in the ‘Comity of Nations’.
Area -3,287,260 sq.kms Length of coast line – of main land – 6,100 kms –
Population ——————————-1.20 bn
No. of Villages ————————–6,38,000 +
No. of States —————————-28
No. of Union Territories —————7
No. of Major Languages ————–25
No. of Dialects —————————over 1,600
No. of Major Religions —————–6
No. of Castes —————————- over 6,400
No. of Major Festivals ——————over 29
India as seen by outsiders from history:
Quotations for consideration:
“If I were asked under what sky the human mind has most fully developed some of its choicest gifts, has most deeply pondered on the greatest problems of life, and has found solutions, I should point to India”.
– Max Mueller (German scholar)
“India was the motherland of our race, and Sanskrit the mother of Europe’s language: she was the mother of our philosophy; mother, through the Arabs, of much of our mathematics; mother, through the Buddha, of the ideals embodied in Christianity; mother, through the village community, of self-government and democracy. Mother India is in many ways the mother of us all”.
– Will durant, American historian.
“India is, the cradle of the human race, the birthplace of human speech, the mother of history, the grandmother of legend, and the great grandmother of tradition. Our most valuable and most instructive materials in the history of man are treasured up in India only.”
– Mark Twain, American author.
“We owe a lot to the Indians, who taught us how to count, without which no worthwhile scientific discovery could have been made”.
-Albert Einstein (Physicist)
“India was China’s teacher in religion and imaginative literature, and the world’s teacher in trigonometry, quadratic equations, grammar, phonetics, Arabian Nights, animal fables, chess, as well as in philosophy, and that she inspired Boccaccio, Goethe, Herder, Schopenhauer, Emerson, and probably also old Aesop.”
– Lin Yutang (1895-1976) author of ‘ The Wisdom of China and India’.
“She (India) has left indelible imprints on one fourth of the human race in the course of a long succession of centuries. She has the right to reclaim … her place amongst the great nations summarizing and symbolizing the spirit of humanity. From Persia to the Chinese sea, from the icy, regions of Siberia to Islands of Java and Borneo, India has propagated her beliefs, her tales and her civilization !”
– Sylvia Levi.
Jai Hind ! –