A country often called as mystical land, India is home to one sixth of the world's population. People here reflect diverse culture, traditions and values. Ethnically Indians speak different languages, follow different religions, eat the most diverse varieties of food all of which add to the rich Indian culture and you wonder how it could be called a country at all! No doubt, India is a world in itself and its vastness can challenge anybody's imagination.
India has vast open spaces in the deserts of Rajasthan and the mountain plateaus of Ladakh. You have mountain glaciers in the North, arid, desert land in the center and thick jungle down south. The cities are enormous yet vibrant and home to world-renowned temples and palaces, while the tranquil coast offers the perfect recipe for rest, recuperation and a sense of peace. A lot of festivals like Diwali, Holi, Id, Ganesha Chaturthi, Christmas, Mahaveer Jayanthi are all celebrated by sharing sweets and pleasantries with family, neighbours and friends.
The history of India dates back to 5000 years back when India's first major civilisation flourished along the Indus River valley. The Indus civilization at one point of time extended nearly a million square kilometres across the Indus river valley and existed at the same period as the ancient civilizations of Egypt and Sumer but far outlasted them. Aryans came around 1500 BC and were mainly responsible for collapse of Indus Valley civilisation. The Four Vedas or the important books of Hinduism/India were compiled in this period. The modern India got its independence from Britain in 1947 after a long struggle led mostly by Mahatma Gandhi. However, the country was divided into two countries, in the process of becoming independent.
Post independence, India has made huge progress inspite of great problems, and has developed its industry and its agriculture, and has maintained a system of government which makes it the largest democracy in the world. One of the fascinations of India is that the old and new co-exits here; centuries of history rubbing shoulders with the IT age; and similarly, ‘Silicon Valley' of Bengaluru (formerly Bangalore) is as much a part of the world's largest democracy as its remotest village.
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“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 Muller
"India was the mother of our race and Sanskrit the mother of Europe's languages. She was the mother of our philosophy, mother through the Arabs, of much of our mathematics, mother through Buddha, of the ideals embodied in Christianity, mother through village communities of self-government and democracy. Mother India is in many ways the mother of us all." - Will Durant