If you have always dreamed about discovering India, here is a general overview of this huge Asian country.
Looking forward to discover one of the world's oldest histories along with different cultures and traditions? Or are you looking for new opportunities in a developed and industrialized economy that is open towards foreigners? India can be the ideal destination for you, being one of the world's most ancient civilizations. Indeed, over the years, many foreigners coming from different countries have settled in its big cities so as to benefit from the opportunities and advantages it provides. But before you actually move there, it is best to have a minimum knowledge about it.
Stretching over 3,287,263 km², the Republic of India is located in South Asia. It is bordered by Pakistan, China, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Burma, as well as the Indian Ocean in the South. The country is divided into 28 States, namely Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Haryana, Goa, among others, other six other federal territories and a national territory. Its capital city is New Delhi. The following are its major cities: Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Pune, Surat and Jaipur.
According to the World Bank's official figures, India's population amounted to some 1,267 million inhabitants in 2014, which indicates that it is the world's second most densely populated country. Its most densely populated cities are Mumbai, with more than 12 million inhabitants, New Delhi with more than 11 million inhabitants, Bangalore with more than 8 million inhabitants and Hyderabad with 6 million inhabitants. Moreover, its population is estimated to be greater than that of China, which is currently the world's most densely populated country, in the years to come. Note that India also several expatriate communities.
To date, India has not less than 23 official languages. Each one of these is specific to a particular State. In different regions, you will also find some 4,000 dialects, among which you have the Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, Gujrati, Punjabi, Urdu, etc. Hindi remains the most spoken official language. As regards foreign languages, English is deemed to be the administrative language. Therefore, you are likely to come across thousands of English-speaking people in most major cities, but this can be quite rare in rural regions.
India is known to be one of the world's giant economies with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of US$ 2,048 billions in 2014. Growth rate, for its part, was around 5.4% in 2014 and is estimated at 6.6% in 2015. According to experts, it can even rise to up to 7% if the country keeps the pace in terms of recovery. Note that India's economy mainly relies on the fields of services, industry, agriculture, as well as information and communication technology, agri-food, pharmaceuticals, the manufacturing industry, etc.
India is known to be the world's biggest democracies, since it has achieved Independence in 1974 following a long struggle led by Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, better known as Mahatma Gandhi.
In 1950, India became a parliamentary and federal Republic. In short, the executive power is held by the central government and those of the different States and territories.
The present President of the Republic, Pranab Mukherjee, is the Head of the State. He is elected by universal suffrage for a five years mandate, but he does not have any executive power. On the other hand, the present Prime Minister Narendra Modi, elected in May 2014, has the executive power and chair the Cabinet.
As regards the judiciary, power is in the hands of the Supreme Court which is not only the federal court but also the constitutional court and the court of appeal.
India's climate varies from one region to another. It consists of four seasons, namely winter, summer, monsoon and autumn. Winter lasts for a month only, that is from January to February, while summer lasts from March to May. Monsoon, that is the rainy season, starts around June to end in September. Finally, autumn comes in October and lasts till December.
The average temperature varies between 22.5 °C and 27.5 °C almost everywhere. In some regions, particularly in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, temperatures can rise up to 28 °C and even more. In May 2015, heat waves reached over 45 °C, causing the death of more than 2,000 people in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
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