Original India was known for its cultural and commercial wealth. The major religions of the world - Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism and Jainism -originated here. Christianity, Islam and Zoroastrianism came into existence in the first millennium CE. And, hence, these religions formed the country's diverse culture. India was ruled by the British East India Company administration for several years, and India finally became independent in 1947.
As far as the nominal GDP is considered, Indian economy is the eleventh-largest in the world, and considering the purchasing power parity (PPP), it is the third-largest in the world. During the 1991 economic reforms, India was termed as the fastest-growing important economies. The country is considered as a newly and freshly industrialised country. But, it still faces several challenges like illiteracy, poverty, inadequate public healthcare and corruption. It is a nuclear country, having the world's third-largest standing army. It is also rich in the variety of wildlife in protected habitats.
India has 29 states - Andhra Pradesh , Arunachal Pradesh, Assam , bihar, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir ,Jharkhand , Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Orissa, Punjab, Rajasthan , Sikkim, Tamil Nadu , Telangana, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal - and seven union territories - Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Chandigarh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, Lakshadweep, National Capital Territory of Delhi and Pondicherry.
According to Census of 2011 data, the towns and cities are classified as 'Class I' with 100,000 and above people, 'Class II' with 50,000 to 99,999 people, 'Class III' with 20,000 to 49,999 people, 'Class IV' with 10,000 to 19,999 people, 'Class V' with 5,000 to 9,999 people and 'Class VI' with less than 5,000 people.
The Census 2011 data shows that India has less that 5,000,000 megacity, 1,000,000-4,999,999 metropolis, 500,000-999,999 sub-metropolis and 12, 41, 54,212 small village. Bangalore and Hyderabad went through an area expansion in 2007, Chennai in 2011, and Coimbatore, Madurai and Tiruchirappalli in 2010.
Last Updated on 03/06/2013