India (Hindi: à¤à¤¾à¤°à¤¤ BhÄrat; see also other names), officially the Republic of
India (Hindi: à¤à¤¾à¤°à¤¤ à¤—à¤£à¤°à¤¾à¤œà¥à¤¯ BhÄrat
Gaá¹‡arÄjya), is a sovereign nation in South Asia. It is the seventh
largest country by geographical area, the second most populous country, and
the most populous democracy in the world.
Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea
on the west, and the Bay of Bengal on the east, India has a coastline of
7,517 kilometers (4,671 mi). It
to the west;China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the
north-east; and Bangladesh and Myanmar to the
east. In the Indian Ocean, India
is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka, Maldives, and Indonesia.
Home to the Indus Valley civilization and a region of
routes and vast empires, the Indian subcontinent was identified with its commercial and cultural
wealth for much of its long history. Four major
world religions, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism originated here, while Islam,
arrived in the first millennium CE and
shaped the region's diverse culture. Gradually annexed by the British East India Company from the
early eighteenth century and colonised by the United
Kingdom from the mid-nineteenth century, India became a modern nation-statestruggle for independence that was
marked by widespread use of nonviolent resistance as a means of social
is the world's twelfth largest economy
at market exchange rates and the world's third largest economy in purchasing power. Economic reforms have
transformed it into one of the world's fastest growing
large economies; however, it still suffers from high
levels of poverty, illiteracy,
malnutrition and environmental degradation. A pluralistic, multi-lingual, and multi-ethnic society, India is also home to a
diversity of wildlifeprotected habitats.
more than one billion people, India
is the second most populous country in the
world accounting for 17% of the worldâ€™s population. Following independence, India
has pursued a policy of planned economic development until the early 1990s, when
it shifted to structural adjustment policies and liberalization. Subsequently, the
Indian economy grew at a fast rate though concerns on equity and poverty persist.
The country has recently become one of the worldâ€™s fastest growing economies
with an average growth rate of eight percent over the past three years. It
has emerged as a global player in several areas, including information
process outsourcing, telecommunications, and pharmaceuticals. The demographic
profile of India
is changing with an ageing population. The subcontinent is
characterized by large diversities in geographical regions, sociocultural groups,
and health needs.
is being propelled to a position of international eminence, it faces three main
groups of health challenges: first, dealing effectively with unfinished agendas of
communicable diseases, maternal and child health, and health systems strengthening;
second, dealing with new emerging challenges such as the premature burden
of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs); and third, dealing with globalization
related issues while contributing to the management and shaping of the
global policy environment.