About India

Explore India with some details about India and its people

India officially the Republic of India is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, in the world. The llargest country in size is Russia , 2nd Canada, 3rd People’s Republic of China (PRC), 4th United States, 5th Brazil, 6th Australia followed by India. India’s land surface is 3,166,414 square kilometres shows a notable diversity of habitats, with significant variations in rainfall, altitude, topography, and latitude. The region is also heavily influenced by summer monsoons that cause major seasonal changes in vegetation and habitat.

To the north India is bordered by the world’s highest mountain chain the Himalayas, where foothill valleys and jungles cover the northernmost of the country’s 26 states. Further south, plateaus, tropical rain forests and sandy deserts are bordered by palm fringed beaches.

India is the second most populous country, of 1,120,700,000 making up 17.07% of the world’s population.

Four major world religions, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism originated here, while Islam, Christianity, Judaism and Zoroastrianism, arrived in the first millennium all helping to shape India’s diverse culture.


The multi-lingual, multi-ethnic society and culture is observed in the colourful tribal lifestyles. Its cultural diversity, the result of the coexistence of a number of religions as well as local traditions across a huge continent. The many magnificent temples and buildings are identifiable by their ornately sculptured surface, are associated with a great many crafts and performing arts from this magnificent country.

The Europeans and India. 1498 to 1947

The Portuguese navigator Vasco De Gama had found a route around Africa to India in 1498. For the next 100 years the Portuguese kept the route secret to protect their monopoly on the spice trade.

The Mughals – arrived from Central Asia in 1526 and started their rule of the Indian subcontinent. It is interesting that the Mughals arrived after the Portuguese reached India. Mughal’s rule started its decline after reaching their peak of power in 1700.

The East India Company was created by a group of London merchants, after seeing the wealth that Dutch merchants were enjoying from the spice trade.  The East India Company’s charter was granted by Queen Elizabeth I of England in December 1600 to trade East Indies (the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia).

When the first East India company ships arrived at Surat, in 1608, the Mughals were all powerful. Surat was the port used by the textile manufacturers of Gujerat and was the most important centre for the overseas trade of the Mughal Empire.

Indian culture and certain its wealth far exceeded that of England and indeed Europe as a whole at that time. The East India Company merchants intentions were purely to trade and bring back spices.

The collapse of Mughal Power in the early 1700s lead to anarchy and power struggles between local rulers. The British and French companies back different rulers and the war is Europe spilled over to India. By the late 1800s the East India Company was in control of some parts of what we call India today. The Company operated a policy of working with local rulers Maharajahs who controlled their own territories, called Princely States. The company would attack any local rulers who waged war on their neighbors. The East India Company’s objective was stability. Slowly the territory under the East India control grew. The British never set out to control and conquer, it was circumstances that dictated events.

By the time of the Bengal Army Mutiny (not the Madras Army, nor the Sikh Regiments who remained loyal) in 1856-7. Also referred to as the Indian Mutiny at the time, or more recently as War of Independence, it marked the end of the East India Company. The British Government took over direct control of India.

Princely states operated on a semi-sovereign principle, governed by a local ruler. The government of British India only interfered in affairs of princely states when it deemed necessary by the issue edicts that applied to all of India. (1)

At the time of the British withdrawal in 1947 there were 565 princely states which covered 40% of the area of pre-independence India and constituted 23% of its population. The era of the princely states effectively ended with Indian independence in 1947; by 1950, almost all of the principalities had acceded to either India or Pakistan. The accession process was largely peaceful, except in the cases of Jammu and Kashmir (whose ruler decided to accede to India following an invasion by Pakistan-based forces).

Modern India.

India became a modern nation-state in 1947 after independence from the British.

Until 1956, Indian princes received privy purses (government allowances), and retained their statuses, privileges, and autonomy in internal matters. In December 1971, Indira Gandhi famously abolished India’s princely order, terminating the privileges enjoyed by retired maharajahs. 

India is the world’s fourth largest economy in purchasing power and the second fastest growing large economy. India has made rapid progress in the last decade, most notably in information technology. India’s struggles with high levels of poverty, persistent malnutrition, and environmental degradation.

Its ancient monuments are the backdrop for the world’s largest democracy where atomic energy is generated and industrial development has brought the country within the world’s top ten nations. Today, fishermen along the country’s coastline fashion simple fishing boats in a centuries old tradition while, a few miles away. motor vehicles glide off conveyor belts in
state-of-the-art factories.

This is a truly amazing country, which is changing fast. Our first visit was in 1997, our second in 2006. In a period of 9 years we have observed massive changes. Perhaps the most noticeable is the forms of vehicles on the road. Now there are many top range cars which 9 years ago did not or hardly existed at all. We would suggest you get to India soon before it changes too much and just becomes a replica of anywhere else in the world .

Fauna of India
India encompasses some of the world’s most bio diverse regions. It hosts three bio diversity hotspots: the Western Ghats, the Eastern Himalayas, and the Indo-Burmese border region. India is home to a diversity of wildlife in a variety of protected habitats. The Corbett National Park being just one of them.

India is a fascinating country to explore with lovely people.