India is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world. Bound by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the south-west, and the Bay of Bengal on the south-east, it shares land borders with Pakistan China, Nepal, Bhutan, Burma and Bangladesh. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives; in addition, India's Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia. Home to the ancient Indus Valley Civilisation and a region of historic trade routes and vast empires, the Indian subcontinent was identified with its commercial and cultural wealth for much of its long history. Four of the world's major religions—Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism - originated here, whereas Zoroastrianism, Christianity, and Islam arrived in the 1st millennium CE and also helped shape the region's diverse culture. Gradually annexed by and brought under the administration of the British East India Company from the early 18th century and administered directly by the United Kingdom from the mid-19th century, India became an independent nation in 1947 after a struggle for independence that was marked by non-violent resistance led by Mahatma Gandhi. Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies; it is considered a newly industrialised country. However, it continues to face the challenges of poverty, illiteracy, corruption, and inadequate public healthcare. A nuclear weapons state and a regional power, it has the third-largest standing army in the world and ranks eighth in military expenditure among nations. India is a federal constitutional republic governed under a parliamentary system consisting of 28 states and 7 union territories. India is a pluralistic, multilingual, and multiethnic society. It is also home to a diversity of wildlife in a variety of protected habitats.
The India Gate is the national monument of India. Situated in the heart of New Delhi, the India Gate was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens. It is inspired by the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. It was built in 1931. Originally known as the All India War Memorial, it is a prominent landmark in Delhi and commemorates the 90,000 soldiers of the Indian Army who lost their lives while fighting for the Indian Empire, or more correctly the British Raj, in World War I and the Third Anglo-Afghan War. It is composed of red and pale sandstone and granite. Originally, a statue of George V of the United Kingdom stood under the now vacant canopy in front of the India Gate, but it was removed to Coronation Park together with other statues. Following India's independence, the India Gate became the site of the Indian Army's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, known as Amar Jawan Jyoti ("the flame of the immortal soldier").
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edited by dragon89 and mobydick74
Added by argicgr