INDIA DATES 1857 TO | Upanishads | Vedas

Modern Day India (1757 to 1947


India's modern history extends till its independence in 1947. Year Event 1757 Battle of Plassey: The British defeat Siraj-uddaulah 1760 Battle of Wandiwash: The British defeat the French 1764 Battle of Buxar: The British defeat Mir Kasim 1775 The First Anglo-Maratha war 1784 Second Mysore War : The British defeat Hyder Ali 1790 Third Mysore War between the British and Tipu 1799 Fourth Mysore War: The British defeat Tipu; Death of Tipu; Partition of Mysore 1805 The Second Anglo-Maratha war: The British defeat the Marathas at Assaye: Treaty of Amritsar 1814 The Anglo-Gurkha war 1817 The last Anglo-Maratha war: Marathas finally crushed by the British 1824 The First Burmese war 1839 First Afghan war 1845 First Anglo-Sikh war 1849 Second Anglo-Sikh war, British annex Punjab as Sikhs are defeated 1852 Second Anglo-Burmese war 1853 Railway opened from Bombay to Thane; Telegraph line from Calcutta to Agra 1857 First War of Indian Independence: The Sepoy Mutiny 1877 Delhi Durbar: The Queen of England proclaimed Empress of India 1905 The First Partition of Bengal Formation of Muslim League; Congress 1906 declaration regarding Swaraj The Imperial capital shifted from Calcutta to 1912 Delhi 1919 Jalianwalla Bagh massacre; The Montague-

1922 1930 1942 1944 1947 1974

Chelmsford Reforms offer limited autonomy Civil Disobedience Movement; Chauri-Chaura violence leads to Gandhi suspending movement Civil Disobedience movement continues; Salt Satyagraha: Gandhiji's Dandi March Subhash Chandra Bose forms Indian National Army Gandhi-Jinnah Talks break down on Pakistan issue Announcement of Lord Mountbatten's plan for partition of India on June 3rd. Partition of India and Independence (15th August). Jawaharlal Nehru becomes the first Prime Minister.

Indian Women and marriages It is said that: "Heaven is when you have an American Salary, live in a British house, eat Chinese food and have an Indian Wife Hell is when you have an American Wife; eat British Food; have a Chinese house and get an Indian Salary"
Former Ms India - Juhi Chawla

It is not contempt for the British and the Chinese, but this sounds more right: "Heaven is when you have an American Salary, an American house and eat Indian food and have an Indian Wife" Indian marriages are mostly arranged marriages. That might be one reason why divorce rate in India is amongst the lowest in the world. The other reason of course is that Indian women are extremely understanding. Making sacrifices and adjustments are their strongest traits. Apart from winning beauty contests, Indian women like twenty-one year old Subbaraman Vijayalakshmi excel in brains too. Viji won a rare honour in July 2000, by becoming the first Indian women Chess Grand Master (GM).

List of world's most beautiful women Source: Femina, India Ms Universe - Lara Dutta Year 2000 1999 1998 1997 1996 1995 1994 Miss Universe Lara Dutta Mpule Kwelagobe Wendy Fitzwilliam Brook Lee Alicia Machado Chelsi Smith Sushmita Sen Country India Botswana Trinidad USA Venezuela USA India

Reita Faria, a young medical student from Mumbai, created history in 1966 by becoming the first Indian to be crowned Miss World. However, it took almost twentysix years for another Indian to win at an international beauty pageant. Ms World - Aishwaria Rai Year 2000 1999 1998 1997 1996 1995 1994 Miss World Priyanka Chopra Yukta Mookhey Linor Abargil Diana Hayden Irene Skliva Jacqueline Aquilera Aishwarya Rai Country India India Israel India Greece Venezuela India

History of the beautiful women of India Source: Femina, India 2007 • Miss India Universe - Puja Gupta • Miss India World - Sarah-Jane Dias • Miss India Earth - Pooja Chitgopekar 2006 • Miss India Universe - Neha Kapur, later placed among the top 20 semifinalists at Miss Universe • Miss India World - Natasha Suri, top 17 semi-finalists, second runner up (beach beauty), second runner up (dress designer award), top 10 in (talent round) • Miss India Earth - Amruta Patki, 1st runner-up Miss Earth 2006 held in Manila, Philippines 2005 • Miss India Universe - Amrita

• •

Miss India World - Sindhura Gadde, later placed among the top 15 semifinalists at Miss World Miss India Earth - Niharika

2004 • Miss India Universe - Tanushree Dutta, later placed among the Top 10 at Miss Universe • Miss India World - Sayali Bhagat • Miss India Earth - Jyoti Brahmin, later placed among the Top 16 Semifinalists at Miss Earth 2003 • Miss India Universe - Nikita Anand • Miss India World - Ami Vashi, later 3 runner up at Miss World 2003 • Miss India Earth - Swetha Vijay 2002 • Miss India Universe - Neha Dhupia, later ninth at Miss Universe. It started with a dream for the tall and slender beauty with dark-brown eyes. Millions of moments later, Neha Dhupia, a true-blue Virgo, sported a smile infused with the fragrance of sweet success. • Miss India World - Shruti Sharma semifinalist in miss world 2002 • Miss India Earth - Reshmi Ghosh 2001 • Miss India Universe - Celina Jaitley, later fourth runner-up at Miss Universe. The light-eyed lady with an hourglass figure, Celina Jaitley was definitely a crowd puller in the Femina Miss India contest. Little wonder, then, that she walked away with all the laurels and the precious title too. • Miss India World - Sara Corner • Miss India Earth - Shamita Singha, later fifth place at Miss Earth (first contestant from India ever to compete) 2000 • Miss India Universe- Lara Dutta, later Miss Universe, 2000 (also Miss Intercontinental 1997). When she wore the crown in the beautiful city of Cyprus, her triumph was best described as deserving. Lara Dutta describes her winning the Miss Universe title as being "a culmination of a dream" content. • Miss India World - Priyanka Chopra, later Miss World, 2000. The eighteenyear-old gal from Bareilly, Priyanka Chopra beat out 94 other lovely ladies to claim the Miss World 2000 title. And she sashayed away with $100,000 as prize money at the Millennium dome, London. • Miss India Asia-Pacific International- Diya Mirza, later Miss Asia-Pacific, 2000. Think delicacy, poise, elegance and brains. Think Diya Mirza, a heavenly beauty from Hyderabad, who won the prestigious Miss Asia-Pacific title at the beauty pageant held on December 2, 2000, in Manila. • Miss India International- Gayatri Joshi, later semifinalist at Miss International 2000

1999 • Miss India Universe - Gul Panag, later sixth place at Miss Universe. She has tremendous faith in herself. After obtaining a doctorate in developmental economics. She entered the media, inspired by her newsreader aunt, Komal G B Singh. She believes that the possibilities are endless. • Miss India World - Yukta Mookhey, later Miss World, 1999. Her serenity and calm shone throughout the pageant. The 5'11'' tall brunette from India took London's Olympia theatre by storm in 1999. • Miss India Asia Pacific - Shivangi Parikh. The stage was not new for Shivangi who had modelled for Hemant Trivedi & Achala Sachdev, starred in music videos and also won the Miss Mumbai pageant. 1998 • Miss India Universe - Lymaraina D'Souza, later seventh place at Miss Universe. How does a 19-year-old collegian who's never worn make-up before and who claims to "eat like a horse" and be "pretty laid-back" get to be Femina Miss India-Universe 1998? Well, Lymaraina D'Souza was clear about her goals. She is pursuing her studies in Psychology in Hawaii. • Miss India World - Annie Thomas 1997 • Miss India Universe - Nafisa Joseph, later tenth place at Miss Universe. Winning the crown did not come as a big surprise to her. She portrayed great confidence at the Miss Universe pageant, and in reply to one of the questions, she said that, to bring a child into the world and not able to offer it peace was the biggest injustice done in the world. • Miss India World - Diana Hayden, later Miss World, 1997. This little princess from Hyderabad flew out of the country only to return after being crowned the world's most beautiful woman on November 22, 1997, in Seychelles. And moments after winning the crown, she told that the title meant the world to her. 1996 • Miss India Universe- Sandhya Chib, later seventh place at Miss Universe, 1996. Years after winning the contest, Sandhya returned and took the stage by storm. Today, Sandhya is a successful model. Luck was not on her side at the Miss Universe pageant where she stood seventh. On her return, she got engaged. • Miss India World - Rani Jeyraj, later third runner-up at Miss World, 1996 • Representative at Miss International - Fleur Dominique Xavier 1995 • Miss India Universe - Manpreet Brar, later first runner-up at Miss Universe. An MBA student, Manpreet won the Miss Universe Runner-up title. Today, she leads a busy life with ramp shows and shooting for channel [V] as a VJ. She also plans to be a TV producer some day. • Miss India World - Preeti Mankotia • Representative at Miss International - Priya Gill

1994 • Miss India Universe - Sushmita Sen, later Miss Universe, 1994. She stunned the universe. And shone on Manila. Euphoria gripped India on May 21, 1994, when, for the first time ever, an Indian girl was crowned Miss Universe, at Manila, Philippines. That's Sushmita Sen, Miss Universe 1994. • Miss India World - Aishwarya Rai, later Miss World, 1994. She first caught the audiences' fancy in the Pepsi advertisement with Aamir Khan. Soon after, she won the Femina Miss India title in 1994. She also won the Miss World title, and became the second Indian to be crowned Miss World in 28 years. 1993 • Miss India - Namrata Shirodkar, later sixth place at Miss Universe. Another model-turned-actress, Namrata had support of her sister Shilpa, who's a celebrated actress in Bollywood. Presently, Namrata is doing films and has a lot of them lined up for release as well. • Miss India first runner-up - Karminder Kaur • Miss India 2nd Runner-Up - Pooja Batra. Who can miss Anil Kapoor's stunning city-bred girlfriend in the film Virasat or the `Head & Shoulders' advertisement that is flashed on television so often. Today, Pooja devotes her time in doing meaningful roles and good films. 1992 • Miss India - Madhu Sapre, later second runner-up at Miss Universe, 1992. This leggy lass came within touching distance of the Miss Universe crown but was pipped by her own honesty. She still is the eternal ramp favourite. And now she's writing a book tentatively titled ‘Tuff Girls Don't Talk Englis’. The title says it all. • Miss India World - Shyla Lopez • Miss India International - Kamal Sandhu Other prominent Miss India’s 1980 - Sangeeta Bijlani 1984 - Juhi Chawla 1985 - Sonu Walia 1986 - Mehr Jessia

History of the world

This is chronology of events in the history of mankind. So when someone tells you the Greeks and Romans form the cradle of human civilization, you can tell them Egyptians and Indians were building cities thousands of years before the so-called Western civilization even set a stone. 4-5 MILLION B.C .- Humans (Hominids - in primitive ape-like stages) first appear in AFRICA (EAST & SOUTH) 2.5 - 2 MILLION B.C. - Humans (Homo Habilis - humans with brain and dextrous fingers and Homo Erectus) appear in Africa 900,000 B.C. - Humans (Homo Sapiens) move towards WEST ASIA (MESOPOTAMIA - PERSIA -INDUS) 850,000 B.C. - Humans move towards LOWER EUROPE (ANATOLIA/ BALKANS). (ANATOLIA is mordern day Turkey) 450,000 B.C. - Humans move towards CHINA (NORTH) 200,000 B.C. - Humans seen in MIDDLE EUROPE 120,000 B.C. - Humans start occupying JAVA 100,000 B.C. - EARLIEST KNOWN FORM OF HOMO SAPIENS SAPIENS (AFRICA) 50,000 B.C. - Humans move towards AUSTRALIA 35,000 B.C. - Humans move towards UPPER EUROPE 30,000 B.C. - Humans set up in NORTH AMERICA 10,000 B.C - Humans migrate towards SOUTH AMERICA (ICE AGE ENDS) 10000-4000 B.C. - Humans start AGRICULTURAL/ HUNTING/ METAL WORKS 6000 B.C. COPPER FOUND IN WEST ASIA 5000 B.C. COPPER FOUND IN BALKANS 4000-2000 B.C. BRONZE/ COPPER IS WIDELY USED IN THE OLD WORLD (ASIA)



History of India

Ancient history of India can be divided into a period from 7000 BC to 1000 AD, then Medieval India (1000 AD to 1756 AD) and modern day (1757 to 1947 AD). Ancient India (BC to 1000 AD)

Age 7000-3750 3000-2000 2200-1900 2000-1500 1000 BC 900 BC 800 BC 550 BC 544 BC 327 BC 324 BC 322 BC 272 BC 180 BC 145 BC 30 BC 40 AD 320 AD 340 AD 360 AD 380 AD 405 AD 415 467 476 606 711 892 AD AD AD AD AD AD


985 AD 1001 AD

Event Vedic Age Harappa (Indus and Saraswati) Civilization Decline of Indus and Saraswati Civilization Period of Complete chaos and migration Aryans expand into the Ganga valley from the Indus valley Mahabharata War Aryans expand into Bengal (Epic Age of Mahabharata and Ramayana) Composition of the Upanishads Buddha's Nirvana Alexander's Invasion Chandragupta Maurya defeats Seleacus Nicator Rise of the Mauryas; Chandragupta establishes first Indian Empire Ashoka begins reign Fall of the Mauryas; Rise of the Sungas Chola king Erata conquers Ceylon Rise of the Satvahana Dynasty in the Deccan Sakas in power in Indus Valley and Western India Chandragupta I establishes the Gupta dynasty Samudragupta conquers the North and most of the Deccan Samudragupta conquers the North and most of the Deccan Chandragupta II comes to power; Golden Age of Gupta Literary Renaissance Fa-hein begins his travels through the Gupta Empire Accession of Kumara Gupta I Skanda Gupta assumes power Birth of astronomer Aryabhatta Accession of Harshavardhan Gupta Invasion of Sind by Muhammad Bin Qasim Rise of the Eastern Chalukyas The Chola Dynasty: Accession of Rajaraja, the Great Defeat of Jaipal by Sultan Mahumd Medieval India (1000 AD to 1756 AD)

Age 1026 1191 1192 1206 1221 1232 1288 1290 1320 1325 1336 1398 1424 1451 1489 1490 1498 1510 1518 1526 1526-1530 1530 1538 1539 1555 1556 1564 1565 1568 1571 1572 1573 1575 1576 1577 1580

Event Mahmud Ghazni sacks Somnath Temple Prithviraj Chauhan routs Muhammad Ghori: the first battle of Tarain Ghori defeats Prithviraj Chauhan: the second battle of Tarain Qutbuddin establishes the Slave Dynasty Mongol invasion under Genghis Khan Foundation of the Qutub Minar Marco Polo visits India Jalaludin Firuz Khalji establishes the Khalji dynasty Ghiyasuddin Tughluk founds the Tughluk dynasty Accession of Muhammad-bin-Tughluk Foundation of Vijayanagar (Deccan) Timur invades India Rise of the Bahmani dynasty (Deccan) The Lodi dynasty established in Delhi Adil Shah dynasty at Bijapur Nizam Shahi dynasty at Ahmednagar First voyage of Vasco da gama Portuguese capture Goa Kutub Shahi dynasty at Golconda Establishment of the Mughul Dynasty; First Battle of Panipat: Babur defeats Lodis Reign of Babur Humayun succeeds Babur Death of Guru Nanak Sher Shah Suri defeats Humayan and becomes Emperor of Delhi Humayun recovers the throne of Delhi Death of Humayun; Accession of Akbar Akbar abolishes poll tax on Hindus Battle of Talikota: Muslim rulers in Deccan defeats Vijaynagar Empire Fall of Chittor Foundation of Fatehpur Sikri by Akbar Akbar annexes Gujarat Surat surrenders to Akbar Battle of Tukaroi Battle of Haldighat: Akbar defeats Rana Pratap; Subjugation of Bengal Akbar troops invade Khandesh Accession of Ibrahim Adil Shah II in Bengal;

Vedas and Upanishads

The oldest literature of Indian thought is the Veda, a collection of religious and philisophical poems and hymns composed over several generations beginning as early as 3000 BC. The Veda was composed in Sanskrit, the intellectual language of both ancient and classical Indian civilizations. Four collections were made, so it is said that there are four Vedas. The four as a group came to be viewed as sacred in Hinduism. Some Vedic hymns and poems address philosophic themes, such as the henotheism that is key to much Hindu theology. Henotheism is the idea that one God takes many different forms, and that although individuals may worship several different gods and goddesses, they really revere but one Supreme Being. There are four Vedas: The Rig-Veda Its traditional date goes back to 3000 BC, something which the German scholar Max Mueller accepted. As a body of writing, the Rig-Veda (the wisdom of verses) is nothing short of remarkable. It contains 1028 hymns (10,589 verses which are divided into ten mandalas or book-sections) dedicated to thirty-three different gods. The most often addressed gods were nature gods like Indra (rain god; king of heavens), Agni (fire god), Rudra (storm god; the 'howler'), Soma (the draught of immortality, an alcoholic brew). The Sama-Veda The Sama-Veda or the wisdom of chants is basically a collection of samans or chants, derived from the eighth and ninth books of the Rig-Veda. These were meant for the priests who officiated at the rituals of the soma ceremonies. There are painstaking instructions in Sama-Veda about how particular hymns must be sung; to put great emphasis upon sounds of the words of the mantras and the effect they could have on the environment and the person who pronounced them.

The Yajur-Veda The Yajur-Veda or the wisdom of sacrifices lays down various sacred invocations (yajurs) which were chanted by a particular sect of priests called adhvaryu. They performed the sacrificial rites. The Veda also outlines various chants which should be sung to pray and pay respects to the various instruments which are involved in the sacrifice. The Atharva-Veda The Atharva-Veda (the wisdom of the Atharvans) is called so because the families of the atharvan sect of the Brahmins have traditionally been credited with the composition of the Vedas. It is a compilation of hymns but lacks the awesome grandeur which makes the Rig-Veda such a breathtaking spiritual experience. Upanishads The term Upanishad ('upa' near; 'ni' down; 'sad' to sit) means sitting down near; this implies the students sitting down near their Guru to learn the big secret. In the splendid isolation of their forest abodes, the philosophers who composed the Upanishads contemplated upon the various mysteries of life and its creation – whether common, or metaphysical. The answers were however not open to all, but only for select students. The reason for this was simple: not everyone can handle knowledge. The composition of the Upanishads marks a significant and stride forward in the direction of knowing the mystery of earth's creation and one comes tantalizingly close to the answers. Through episodes, commentaries, stories, traditions and dialogue, the Upanishads unfold the fascinating tale of creation, life, the essence of life and of that beyond to the seeker of truth. There is no exact date for the composition of the Upanishads. They continued to be composed over a long period, the core being over 7th -5th centuries BC. The Upanishads were originally called Vedanta, which literally means the conclusion to the Vedas. In the Upanishads, views about Brahman (the Absolute, or God) and atman (one's true self) were proposed. There are 18 principal Upanishads viz: Brhad-aranyaka Upanishad The Brhad-aranyaka Upanishad is widely accepted to be the most important of all Upanishads. It has three khandas or parts. The madhu khanda contemplates on the relationship between the individual and the Universal self. The muni khanda or yajnavalkya is a debate which goes on to give the philosophical backing to the earlier teaching. The khila khanda tackles various rituals of worship and meditation. Chandogya Upanishad This Upanishad is a part of the Sama-Veda (see The Vedas). The name comes from the singer of the songs (samans) who is called Chandoga. The initial chapters of the Upanishad, discuss the ritual of sacrifice. The others debate the origin and profundity of the concept of Om, among other things.

Aitareya Upanishad This one forms part of the Rig-Veda. The purpose is to make the reader understand the deeper meaning of sacrifice and to take him away from the outer trappings of the actual act. Taittriya Upanishad A part of the Yajur-Veda, this Upanishad is divided into three sections or vallis. The siksa valli deals with the phonetics of the chants, while the others, brahmananda valli and bhrgu valli deal with self-realization. Isa Upanishad Also called the Isavasya Upanishad, this book deals with the union of God, the world, being and becoming. The stress is on the Absolute in relation with the world (paramesvara). The gist of the teachings is that a person's worldly and otherworldly goals need not necessarily be opposed to each other. Kena Upanishad The name of this Upanishad comes from the first word kena, or by whom. It has two sections of prose and two of poetry. The verses deal with the supreme spirit or the absolute principle (brahmaana) and the prose talks of ishvara (god). The moral of the story is that the knowledge of ishvara reveals the way to self-realization. Katha Upanishad Also called the Kathakopanishad, this Upanishad uses a story (katha) involving a young Brahmin boy called Nachiketa to reveal the truths of this world and the other beyond the veil. Prashna Upanishad Prashna literally means question, and this book is part of the Athrava-Veda. It addresses questions pertaining to the ultimate cause, the power of Om, relation of the supreme to the constituents of the world. Mundaka Upanishad This book also belongs to the Atharva-Veda. The name is derived from 'mund' or to shave, meaning that anyone who understands the Upanishads is s(h)aved from ignorance. This book inscribes the importance of knowing the supreme brahmaana, only by which knowledge can one attain self-realization. Mandukya Upanishad The Mandukya is an exquisite treatise which expounds on the principle of Om and its metaphysical significance in various states of being, waking, dream and the dreamless sleep. The subtlest and most profound of the Upanishads, it is said that this alone will lead one to the path of enlightenment. Svetasvatara Upanishad The name of this Upanishad is after its teacher. It comments on the unity of the souls and the world in one all-encompassing reality. The concept of there being one god is also talked about here. It is dedicated to Rudra, the storm god. Kausitaki Brahmana Upanishad The Upanishad has come down to us in bits here and pieces there. The core of the

text is dedicated to illustrating the fact that the path to release is through knowledge. Maitri Upanishad This is a comparatively later Upanishad as it has references to the Trinity of Hindu Gods (Shiva, Vishnu and Brahma) which is a later development, and plus references to the world being illusory in character reflects Buddhist influence. Subala Upanishad Belonging to the Yajur-Veda, this Upanishad puts down a dialogue between the sage Subala and Brahma the creator of the Hindu Trinity of Gods. It discusses the universe and the absolute. Jabala Upanishad Belonging to the Athrava-Veda this Upanishad addresses some questions pertaining to renunciation. Paingala Upanishad The Paingala is again a dialog, this between Yajnavalkya, the sage mentioned the Brhad-aranyaka's muni khanda and Paingala, a student of his. It discusses meditation and its effects. Kaivalya Upanishad This Upanishad delves into the state of kaivalya or being alone. Vajrasucika Upanishad Belonging to the Sama-Veda the Vajrasucika reflects on the nature of the supreme being. The core of the teachings of the Upanishads is summed up in three words: tat tvam as… you are that. India's Law and Order India's enduring legal institutions, which are deep-rooted in the principles of democracy and justice, ensure a transparent, predictable and secure environment for business and foreign investment. One might tend to think that India has rampant Crime and Corruption problems, but facts speak a little differently. Corruption Corruption in India might still be rampant and people (mostly those in government) and embarrassing stinks like the Volker scandal, continue to be on the take. But to everybody’s surprise, Corruption Perception Index, a survey released by Transparency International, an anti-corruption watchdog, said corruption has decreased marginally in India and it has ranked the country 88th among 159 nations. The survey is not just limited to the monetary value of petty corruption. It also includes public services and states.

Corrupt Countries of the World (19 October 2005) Source: Transparency International's Corruption Perception Ranking of 159 countries Country Bangladesh Chad Turkmenistan Haiti Myanmar Pakistan Afghanistan Nepal India China Sri Lanka Country USA UK Netherlands Iceland Finland New Zealand Singapore Most Corrupt Countries rank 158 158 157 156 155 144 117 117 88 78 78 Least Corrupt Countries rank 17 11 11 Score (out of 10) 1.7 1.7 1.8 1.8 1.8 2.1 2.5 2.5 2.9 3.2 3.2 Score (out of 10) 7.6 8.6 8.6 9.75 9.75 9.75 9.75

Crime : At least 8 million people are being held in prisons and jails around the world, more than half of them in the United States, China and Russia. Worldwide Prison Statistics (May 2001): Sources: Worldwatch Institute, US Bureau of Justice & Britain's Home Office research Highest Rates Russia USA Ukraine S. Africa Uzbekistan Canada China Turkey France Lowest Rates Japan Bangladesh Rates of 100,000 687 682 413 321 258 115 109 95 90 Rates of 100,000 39 37 imprisonment per population

imprisonment per population

Nepal India Indonesia

29 24 20

Note - Fortune magazine and US Department of Justice peg US incarceration rate at 481 per 100,000 residents In absolute numbers too, USA, China and Russia each have atleast six times more prisoners than India.


The government of India recognizes 112 mother tongues that have 10,000 more speakers. India has a total of 1652 different languages and dialects, and most people understand no more than five! This was bound to hapen in a country where different races and stocks poured in for over five thousand years? They all came, mixed and stayed, making the land one big heterogenous existence. The Prinicpal languages of the World, 2004 World Almanac Source: Ethnologue Volume I, SIL International, USA and Prof. Sidney Culbert, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA (All figures are 2000 estimates, in millions) Language Mandarin Hindi English Spanish Arabic Bengali Portuguese Russian Japanese German Korean French Chinese, Wu Malay-Indo Chinese, Yue Telugu Marathi Vietnamese Tamil Official Languages of India Native speakers 874 366 341 322 211 207 176 167 125 100 78 77 77 75 71 69 68 68 66 Total speakers 1,075 496 514 425 256 215 194 275 126 128 78 129 77 176 71 69 68 68 66

Hindi and English are the co-official national languages of India. In addition, the Indian constitution recognizes 18 state languages, which are used in schools and in official transactions. These are Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada (Kanarese), Kashmiri, Konkani, Malayalam, Meithei (Manipuri), Marathi, Nepali, Oriya, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Telugu, Tamil, and Urdu. The regional languages have been recognized as the official language of the States. In many cases, the state boundaries are drawn between linguistic lines.


World's Highest Mountains Source: National Geographic Society Continent N. America S. America Africa Pacific Europe Antartica Place McKinley, Alaska Aconcagua, Argentina Kilimanjaro, Tanzania Jaya, New Guinea Mt Blanc, France-Italy Vinson Massif Height (ft) 20,320 22,834 19,340 16,500 15,771 16,864

Please don't laugh for long after you read the table below!! Asia's Highest Mountains Source: National Geographic Society Peak Everest K2 Kanchenjunga Lhotse I Makalu I Lhotse II Dhaulagiri Manaslu I Cho Oyu Nanga Parbat Annapurna I Gasherbrum Broad Gosainthan Place Nepal India India Nepal Nepal Nepal Nepal Nepal Nepal India Nepal India India Tibet Height (ft) 29,028 28,250 28,208 27,923 27,824 27,560 26,810 26,760 26,750 26,660 26,504 26,470 26,400 26,287

Annapurna II GyachungKang Disteghil Sar Himalchuli Nutpse Masherbrum Nanda Devi Rakaposhi Kamet Namcha Barwa Gurla Mandhat Ulugh Muz Tagh

Nepal Nepal India Nepal Nepal India India India India Tibet Tibet Xinjiang

26,041 25,910 25,868 25,801 25,726 25,660 25,645 25,550 25,447 25,445 25,355 25,340

Note: Some peaks mentioned above fall in the Indian State of Jammu & Kashmir but are illegally occupied by Pakistan India's largest Peaks Source: National Geographic Society (Not counting the ones mentioned above) Peak Skyang Kangri Jongsang Peak Sia Kangri Tent Peak Kabru Baltoro Kangri Mana Nepal Peak Badrinath Nunkun Pyramid Pauhunri Trisul Kangto Trisuli Dunagiri Height (ft) 24,750 24,472 24,350 24,165 24,002 23,990 23,860 23,500 23,420 23,410 23,400 23,385 23,360 23,260 23,210 23,184

The tallest peaks in the other continents of the world are not even taller than Thirty tallest mountains of India. Highest Annual Precipitation Source: US National Climatic Data Center Years of record 38 29 30 32 Continent Asia Oceania Africa S.America Highest Avg Place (Inches) 467.4 Mawsynram, India 460 Mt. Waialeale, Hawai 405 Debundscha, Cameroon 354 Quibdo, Columbia Elevation (feet) 4597 5148 30 120

9 14 22

Australia N.America Europe

340 256 183

Bellenden, Australia Henderson Lake, B.C. Crkvica, Bosnia-Herz.

5102 12 3337

Note: Llora, Columbia claims to get 523.6 inches of rainfall, according to their own measurement practices,procedures and period, but might not be recognized worldwide Principal World Rivers Source: Woods Hole Oceanographic Inst. Library River Nile Congo Niger Chang Huang Ob-Irtysh Lena Mekong Yenisey Ob Brahmaputra Indus Murray-Darling Volga Amazon Parana Purus Madiera Sao Francisco Mississipi-Red Rock Mobile Mississipi Missouri-Red Rock Yukon Rio Grande Continent Africa Africa Africa Asia Asia Asia Asia Asia Asia Asia Asia Asia Australia Europe S. America S. America S. America S. America S. America N. America N. America N. America N. America N. America N. America Outflow Mediterranian Sea Atlantic Ocean Atlantic Ocean East China Sea Yellow Sea Gulf of Ob Laptev Sea South China Sea Kara Sea Gulf of Ob Bay of Bengal Arabian Sea Indian Ocean Caspian Sea Atlantic Ocean Rio de la Plata Amazon River Amazon River Atlantic Ocean Gulf of Mexico Mississipi River Gulf of Mexico Mississipi River Bering Sea Gulf of Mexico Length (mi) 4160 2900 2590 3964 3395 3362 2734 2700 2543 2268 1800 1800 2543 2290 4000 2485 2100 2013 1988 3710 2540 2340 2315 1979 1900

Note - Only rivers longer than Brahmaputra are shown above Other Indian Rivers River Ganges Godavari Yamuna Krishna Outflow Bay of Bengal Bay of Bengal Ganges River Bay of Bengal Length (mi) 1560 900 855 800


Arabian Sea


Waterfalls Source: National Geographic Society The earth has thousands of waterfalls, some of considerable magnitude. Their relative importance is determined not only by height but also by volume of flow, steadiness of flow, crest width, whether the water drops sheerly or over a sloping surface, and where it descends in one leap or in a succession of leaps. A series of low falls flowing over a considerable distance is known as a cascade. Name Tugela# Jog, Sharavathi R.* Wollomombi Tully Wallaman, Stony Cr.# Helena Sutherland, Arthur R.# Gavarnie* Maralsfossen(N) Maralsfossen(S)# Skjeggedal, Nybuai R.#** Skykje** Vetti, Morka-Koldedola R Giessbach(C) Staubbach Trummelbach# Della# Takakkhaw, Daly Glacier# Ribbon** Silver Strand, Meadow Br.** Yosemite## Glass Catarata de Candelas, Cusiana R Great, Kamarang R Angel#* Cuquenan Location S. Africa India Australia Australia Australia N. Zealand N. Zealand Austria Norway Norway Norway Norway Norway Switzerland Switzerland Switzerland Canada Canada United States United States United States Brazil Colombia Guyana Venezuela Venezuela Continent Africa Asia Asia Asia Asia Asia Asia Europe Europe Europe Europe Europe Europe Europe Europe Europe N.America N.America Elevation (ft) 2014 830 1,100 885 1,137 890 1,904 1,385 1,535 2,149 1,378 984 900 984 984 1,312 1,443 1,200

N.America 1,612 N.America 1,170 N.America 2,425 S.America S.America S.America S.America S.America 1,325 984 1,600 3,212 2,000

Note: Estimated mean annual flow, in cubic feet per second, of major waterfalls, are as follows: Niagara, 212,200; Paulo Afonso, 100,000; Urubupunga, 97,000; Iguazu, 61,000; Patosa-Maribondo, 53,000; Victoria, 35,4000; and Kaieteur, 23,400. Elevation= total drop in feet in one or more leaps. # = falls of more than one leap; * = falls that diminish greatly seasonally; ** = falls that reduce to a trickle or are dry for part of each year. If the river names are not shown, they are same as the falls. R = river; (C) = cascade type. Biggest deserts in the world Source: National Geographic Society Name Arabian (E) Chihuahuan Dasht-e Kauir Gibson Gobi Great Sandy Great Victoria Kalahari Kara Kum Kyzyl Kum Libyan Namib Nubian Patagonia Rub a-Khali Sahara Sonoran Syrian Taklimakan Thar Size (sq mi) 70,000 140,000 30,000 120,000 500,000 150,000 150,000 225,000 120,000 100,000 450,000 48,000 100,000 300,000 250,000 3,500,000 70,000 100,000 140,000 100,000 Country Egypt US-Mex. Iran Australia Mongolia Australia Australia Africa Turkmenistan Kazakhstan Libya Africa Sudan Argentina S Arabia Africa US-Mex Saudia China India

Pollution: Over the past century, the Earth's average temperature has increased by approximately 1 F, and is expected to rise to upto 6 F in this century. The earth naturally absorbs incoming solar radiation and emits thermal radiation back into space. This is then trapped by green-house gases in the earths atmosphere. Water vapor, Methane, Nitrous Oxide and Ozone and natural greenhouse gases. Human made greenhouse gases include CFC (Chloro flouro carbons), HCFC (Hydro CFC), HFC (Hydro flouro carbons), PFC (perflouro carbons), SF6 (Sulphur Hexaflouride) and ofcourse Carbon-di-oxide and carbon mono oxide. The top 6 producers of CO2 in the world are USA, China, Russia, Japan, India and Germany.

National Monuments (Architecture)

Indian architecture ranges from the Hindu (and Buddhist and Jain) civilizations starting from 2500 BC to the Muslim and Colonial architecture, and finally to the modern day Contemporary architecture. Hindu Monuments: Hindu architecture concentrates immensely on the religious and spiritual. Hindus incorporated idols into their art. Hinduism is a religion based on worshipping thousands of deities, and for each one of them there exist thousands of temples. Getting into a detailed account of Hindu architecture would be an impossible task, for it dates back to 2500 BC and millions of temples, forts and palaces spread out across the length and breadth of India. Highlights: • Way back in 300 BC, Chandragupta Maurya’s fort along the Ganges in Bihar stretched for an impossible nine miles long and a mile and a half wide. The architecture of the Maurya’s was embalmed in timber, for rock and stone were not as freely in use then. The Mauryan period was also responsible for perfecting the art of polishing, so much so that wood glistened like a mirror From the 7th to 9th century AD, the Pallava kings in the Tamil area were building Kanchipuram, a cluster of over a hundered Hindu shrines mostly dedicated to Shiva. In Thanjavur, the capital of the Cholas in the 10th century, the Thanjavur temple is made entirely of granite and is 207 feet high. The temples in Khajuraho (950-1050AD), while dedicated to Gods, are splattered with images of a sexual nature. The most amazing aspect of architecture in the 15th century would probably be the chariot "rock temples" in southern India, dedicated to the 2nd century BC Aryans. The 16th century saw the revival of Hindu temple architecture, especially in the south. Apart from the main deity, there were images of a thousand gods, goddesses and mortal beings on the outside walls.

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Muslim Monuments (architecture) It is a fact that Islamic rulers destroyed temples all over Hindustan and continued doing so till they ran out of time. The vigourous exercise might have had other reasons than just religious fervour. Perhaps the Muslims couldn’t stomach the structure of a Hindu temple. Or the abounding temples across the sub-continent were methodically dissected and their masonry used for further construction of Persian architecture. Nowhere else in the world can be found such dramatic results of

Muslim builders; thousands of monuments, evolving from simplicity and geometric anarchy to splendid harmonies of stone, marble and brick. Highlights: • • In every city there will be a Jama Masjid where the faithful assemble for the Friday prayer or Jum’ah. While the masjid was mainly known for its simplicity, a tomb or maqbara ranged from a simple affair (like Emperor Aurangzeb’s tomb in Aurangabad) to an awesome structure enveloped in a grandeour which has to be seen to be disbelieved (the glorious Taj Mahal in Agra). Amongst the secular buildings stand the palaces and the forts, which were extremely elaborate and massive structures, of imposing height and splendid grandness, depending on the size of the empire under control. Built almost entirely of stone and marble, palaces could be as high as five storeys. The final flickering example of Mughal architecture in India would perhaps be Safdarjung’s tomb (1753-74 AD) in Delhi. Built of red sandstone and marble panels, the effort was probably to make something similar to Humayun’s tomb, but by this time decay had already seeped into Mughal architecture.

Buddhist Monuments (architecture): The origin of Buddhist architecture goes back to Gandhara, the region from the Khyber Pass to the river Indus. Gandhara architecture took the form of Buddhist cult objects, Buddhas and ornaments for Buddhist monastries. Monastries were invariably made of stone, and most of the sculpture (like friezes) was used to decorate the lower levels of buildings. The most characteristic trait of Gandhara sculpture is the standing or seated Buddha in the few hundreds of temples which have survived out of thousands. The seated Buddha is always cross legged in the traditional Indian way. Highlights: • Ashoka’s edicts, the most early Buddhist sculptors were mainly stone pillars with inscriptions. They were circular free standing pillars rising upto to great heights so that they could be seen from a distance, topped off with a stone lion. The stupa at Sanchi, was originally built by Emperor Ashoka. In 150 BC, renovation work made the stupa 54 feet high and 120 feet in diameter. The timber railings were replaced by stone ones, standing 11 feet high with entrances at five cardinal point, forming a barricade. Emperor Ashoka’s palace near Patna was a masterpiece. Made mostly of wood, it seems to have been destroyed by fire. Rock art of the Buddhists included massive larger than life statues of Buddha's likeness made out of stone, brass and copper. The shrine or the monastry, evolved from the site of an ancient stupa in the south and the monastry in the north surrounding a rectangular courtyard. Stone formed the base of most temple building. The Buddhist temples in Ajanta and Ellora are the best examples.

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Jain Monuments (Architecture) In the initial years wherever there would be Buddhist or Hindu temples, Jains would

begin making their own, following the Buddhist rock-cut style. The system of carving out temples from rock faces was adopted. In later years when Jains discovered the concept of `mountains of immortality’, they proceeded build their own temples on a peaceful mountain or hill away from snoopy eyes. Highlights: • • While Hindus and Buddhists built temples, Jains built temple-cities on hills. From the architectural perspective, Jain temple-cities seem to be average compared to Hindu or Buddhist temples. Jain temples had a certain militant aura around them to protect them from plunderers . Surrounded by embattled walls, the temples wards were guarded by massive bastions at its ends, with a fortified gateway as the main entrance. The reason being that Jain temples are the richest temples in the world, surpassing even Mughal buildings in terms of grandeur and material wealth. The Chamukh temple of Adinath, built 1618 AD, is a characteristic example of the four-door temple-city. In Ranakpur and Mount Abu in Rajasthan are found the most spectacular of all Jain temples. The Ranakpur temple is built in white marble and the main chamber is supported by finely carved columns, totalling 1,444 in all.

Colonial Architecture The British followed various architectural styles – Gothic, Imperial, Christian, English Rennaissance and Victorian being the essentials. Highlights: • • Mumbai's Gateway of India (through which the last British troops left) was built to give Bombay a truly Imperial (Gothic) ambience. The Victoria Terminus in Mumbai followed the Victorian Gothic style, is the finest example of Gothic architecture in India. Its architecture was marble, decorated tiles, stained glass, metal, concrete and bricks in a fusion which never happened again. High above the huge stairway inside a massive dome looms up as statement of Imperial progress in all its glory. The entrance is flanked by symbolic sentinels of the Raj, a tiger and a lion. Some of the true Gothic monuments include Varanasi's Queen’s College; Allahabad's University, Calcutta's High Court; All Saints Church in Nagpur. Calcutta's Howrah Bridge leading to Howrah Station whose red brick facade is surrounded by 8 square towers in Oriental and Roman style. Calcutta's Victoria Memorial dedicated to Queen Victoria, is probably the most imposing of all British structures in India. Delhi was planned systematically, combining 20th century architecture with that of two centuries before. The tour de forte is Rajpath, approached by a 3.2 km long road flanked by the imposing buildings of the two Secretariats. The Rashtrapati Bhawan, built of brown stone, is truly a befitting home for the President. Connaught Place, Eastern and Western Courts, Flagstaff House and the thousands of public buildings, post offices, officer’s bungalows and public buildings and St. Martin's Garrison church marked an end to this era.

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Contemporary Architecture Over centuries, architecture had evolved from mud to wood, from stone to rock, from brick to marble and eventually, to concrete. Highlights: • • • • • In 1950, Le Corbusier, was hired by the Punjab government to design the new city of Chandigarh, which was a symbol of creativity and modern architecture. A feature now becoming common to almost all major cities in India was tall multi storeyed buildings. The Asiad Village was built as a colossal complex with more than 800 residential units, landscaped courts, streets, restaurants and shops, all catering to sportspersons who assembled here for the Asian Games. The Oberoi hotel in Bhubaneshwar is a classic example of the intermingling of the concept of a Hindu temple and a Buddhist monastry. Going by tradition and after tracing Indian architecture through 2000 years, modern Indian edifices seem a little jaded, if not forced. Gone are the subtle details; those little carvings; those colossal domes and the intricate patterns on walls and pillars. Indian architecture has come a long, long way from Mohenjodaro and Harappan era.


Population growth in India was 1.5% in 2006, compared to 1.72% in 1997. India does not appear in the top ten most densely populated countries of the world. Current Population for All Countries: 2007 Source: United Nations, World Population prospects and U.S. Dept. of Commerce (in thousands) Rank 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Country China India USA Indonesia Brazil Pakistan Bangladesh Russia Nigeria Japan 2007 1,321,852 1,129,866 301,139 234,693 190,010 164,741 150,448 141,377 135,031 127,433

Indian population statistics (2007 est.) Source: Indian Census bureau/ CIA Birth rate: 22.69 births/1,000 population (Ranked 86th in the world) Death rate: 6.58 deaths/1,000 population Total fertility rate: 2.81 children born/woman (Ranked 86th in the world) Age structure: 0-14 years: 31.8% 15-64 years: 63.1% 65 years and over: 5.1% Median age of population: total: 24.8 years male: 24.5 years female: 25.2 years Overall life expectancy at birth was about 68.59 years in 2007 compared to 64 years in the 2002, compared with 60 years in mid-1990's and 32 years in 1941. The infant mortality rate declined from 151 to an estimated 88 per 1000 live births between 1965 and 1995. Infant mortality rate was 34.61 deaths per 1000 live births, in 2007. India is ranked 74th in the world for IMR. According to a world bank report, 80% of India's six-year old's are enrolled in school, as of 2002. Literacy rate in India has improved from 52.21% in 1991 to 65.38% in 2001. Poverty (2006) For a change, there’s good news on poverty in India. The percentage of Indians below the poverty line has dropped to 21.8%, as reported by National Sample Survey of the Planning Commission of India. That’s down from 26.1% for the fiscal year ending in March 2000, but that still means there are 238.5 million people living below the poverty line across India — 170.3 million in rural areas and 68.2 million in urban areas. The study measured poverty for the fiscal year ending in March 2005. It used a measurement called the mixed recall period, under which a consumer recalls spending in five categories, like durable goods, institutional medical expenses, clothing and education from a 365-day period. Population of the World's Largest Cities Sources: United Nations, Dept. for Economic and Social Information and Policy Analysis Pop. (thousands) 2000 26,444 18,131 18,066 Pop. (thousands) 1995 26,959 16,562 15,138

Rank 1. 2. 3.

City, Country Tokyo, Japan Mexico City, Mexico Mumbai (Bombay), India

4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15.

Sao Paulo, Brazil New York City, U.S. Lagos, Nigeria Los Angeles, U.S. Calcutta, India Shanghai, China Buenos Aires, Argentina Dhaka, Bangladesh Karachi, Pakistan Delhi, India Jakarta, Indonesia Osaka, Japan

17,755 16,640 13,427 13,140 12,918 12,887 12,560 12,317 11,794 11,695 11,018 11,013

16,533 16,321 10,287 12,410 11,923 13,584 11,802 9,948 10,609

Notes: The figures given here are United Nations estimates and projections,as revised in 1996, for "urban agglomerations"----that is, contiguous dnsely populated urban areas, not demarcated by administrative boundaries. These figures may not corresond to figures for cities in other parts of The World Almanac (1) Denotes percentage of the total population of the country in which the city is located. (2) Denotes percentage of the total urban population of the country in which the city is located. (-) Denotes numbers unknown for the year 1995 World Population AD 1-2007 Source: World Almanac Year 1 1650 1850 1930 1975 1999 2001 2003 2007 Population (billions) 0.2 0.5 1 2 4 6 6.2 6.305 6.6

Population break-up in the USA, 1990 census Source: US Bureau of Census Results for 2000 census not yet declared All persons White Black Hispanics American Indian Chinese Filipino Japanese Asian Indian Number 199,686,070 29,986,060 22,354059 1,959,234 1,645,472 1,406,770 847,562 815,447

Korean Vietnamese Hawaiian Samoan Guamanian Other Asian Other races

798,849 614,547 211,014 62,964 49,345 821,692 9,804,847

Indians are the highest income earners in the US. The World's Refugees (in India), 2000 Source: The World Refugee survery, 2001 Origin Tibet, Sri Lanka, Burma, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Bhutan other Total Numbers 290,000

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