India is a country in South Asia that is formally known as the Republic of India. It is the world's seventh-largest nation in terms of land area, the second-most populated country, and the most populous democracy on the planet, according to the United Nations. It is bordered on the south by the Indian Ocean, on the southwest by the Arabian Sea, and on the southeast by the Bay of Bengal. It has land boundaries with Pakistan to the west, China to the north, Nepal to the east, and Bangladesh to the west. It is bordered on the east by Myanmar and Bangladesh. While India is located near Sri Lanka and the Maldives on the Indian Ocean's western shores, the country's Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime boundary with the countries of Thailand, Myanmar, and Indonesia on the eastern shores.
Modern people arrived on the Indian subcontinent from Africa no more than 55,000 years ago, according to archaeological evidence. They have had a lengthy occupancy, originally in various degrees of isolation as hunter-gatherers, which has resulted in a very diversified area, second only to Africa in terms of human genetic diversity. Settled life first appeared on the subcontinent 9,000 years ago, on the western borders of the Indus river basin, and developed gradually into the Indus Valley Civilization, which flourished in the third millennium BCE. When an ancient version of Sanskrit, an Indo-European language, reached India from the northwest about 1200 BCE, it became known as the Rigveda, and it became the first written record of Hinduism in India. In India's northern and western areas, the Dravidian languages were displaced by other languages. By 400 BCE, caste-based stratification and exclusion had begun to develop within Hinduism, while Buddhism and Jainism had established, declaring social systems that were not tied to heredity in their own right. Political consolidations early in history gave birth to the loosely connected Maurya and Gupta Empires centred in the Ganges Basin and later in the Indus Valley. Despite the abundance of diverse talent, their collective epoch was also characterised by the deteriorating position of women and the integration of untouchability into a formalised system of religious beliefs. In fact, The Middle kingdoms of South India were responsible for the exportation of Dravidian-language scripts and religious traditions to the kingdoms of Southeast Asia.
Since 1950, India has been a federal republic, with a democratic parliamentary form of government in place. It is a society that is pluralistic, bilingual, and multi-ethnic. It is estimated that the population of India increased from 361 million in 1951 to 1.211 billion in 2011. Meanwhile, its nominal per capita income rose from US$64 per year to US$1,498 per year, and its literacy rate improved from 16.6 percent to 74 cents per person per year. After starting off as a very impoverished nation in 1951, India has developed into a rapidly developing major economy and a centre for information technology services, with a rapidly rising middle class. It has a space programme that includes numerous extraterrestrial missions that are either planned or have already been accomplished. Indian films, music, and spiritual teachings are becoming more popular in popular culture across the world. India has significantly decreased its rate of poverty, although at the expense of growing economic disparity in the process. India is a nuclear-weapons state that spends a lot of money on military equipment and personnel. It has been embroiled in a conflict with its neighbours, Pakistan and China, over Kashmir that has been unresolved since the mid-20th century. Gender inequality, child hunger, and increasing levels of air pollution are just a few of the socio-economic problems that India is dealing with. India's terrain is rich in biodiversity, with four biodiversity hotspots can be found. Its forest cover accounts for 21.7 percent of the total land area. India's wildlife, which has historically been regarded with tolerance in Indian culture, is supported in these forests, as well as in other protected areas across the country.