India, officially the Republic of India, is a country in Southeast Asia that occupies most of the Indian subcontinent. Its capital is New Delhi. India is the second most populous country and the seventh largest country in the world. The Indian coastline stretches for more than seven thousand kilometers. The country has common borders with Pakistan to the northwest, China to the north and east-northeast, Nepal to the northeast, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Burma to the east-northeast. is. On the Indian Ocean, India is close to the Maldives to the south-south-west, Sri Lanka to the south and Indonesia to the south-east. India also claims a border with Afghanistan in the northwest. India has had nuclear weapons since 1974 after making official tests. India is home to some of the oldest civilizations in the world, the Indus Valley civilization developed there from 3000 BC. The Indian subcontinent was home to vast empires and has been present on trade routes since Antiquity. India is the birthplace of four major religions – Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism and Sikhism – while Zoroastrianism, Christianity and Islam took root there during the 1st millennium. Hinduism is the majority religion there with around 80% of the faithful. India is today a very diverse country in religious, linguistic and cultural terms.


India has 1.3 billion people, or 17.5% of the world’s population, half of whom are under 25. It is the second most populous country in the world after China and is expected to become the most populous around 2025. Its population growth rate was 1.2% in 2014. India has more than 2,000 ethnic groups, several hundreds of languages belonging to four different families (Indo-European, Dravidian, Austro-Asian and Tibetan-Burmese) and all the great religions of the world are represented there. Ethnic composition: Indo-Aryans 72%, Dravidians 25%, Mongoloids and others 3%.

Madhya Pradesh

These photos were taken during a trip to the state of Madhya Pradesh. This trip was centered around the November full moon, Kartik Purnima, on the banks of the Narmada, one of the seven sacred rivers of India. It is the time of an important pilgrimage for Hindu worshipers of Shiva who go to the Jyotirlinga temple. Pūrṇimā (Sanskrit: पूर्णिमा) is the word for full moon in Sanskrit. The day of Purnima is the day (Tithi) of each month when the full moon occurs, and marks the division of each month between the two lunar fortnights (paksha), and the Moon is aligned exactly on a straight line, called syzygy, with the Sun and the Earth. The full moon is considered the third of the four primary phases of the Moon; the other three phases are the new moon, the first quarter moon and the third quarter moon. A jyotirlinga (lingam of light) is a Hindu temple where the god Shiva is worshiped in the form of a stone phallus. In India, there are 12 traditional jyotirlingas, places of pilgrimage for Shivaites. The names and locations of these places considered sacred are found in the Shata-rudra-samjita (account of the hundred Rudras) of the Shiva Purana.