Covering more than 1.2 million square miles, India is the 7th largest country in the world. India is home to more than 1.25 billion people, the second highest population in the world. Only 2.3% of Indians are Christians, while 78% are Hindus. More than 350 million Indian boys and girls are 14 or younger, and a recent forecast predicts that India’s population will surpass China’s by 2022.
Five of the world’s eight most densely populated cities are in India. Titagarth, the most densely populated, has more than 99,000 people per square mile. New York City, by comparison, has a density of only 27,000 per square mile. India’s cities are often crowded, yet only 33% of the people live in urban areas.
The most popular sport in India is cricket, a game that in some ways resembles baseball, although baseball fans never see scores such as 393-250.
Indians love to go to the movies, and the Indian film industry produces more movies every year, between 1500 and 2000, than the film industry in any other country.
Because of its size, India has a great diversity of foods, and many of them are quite spicy. The superstar of Indian hot stuff is the Bhut Jaloki, or Ghost Pepper, which is at least 100 times hotter than a jalapeno.
India’s economy is growing, but 30% of the population still lives below the poverty line, and the Per Capita Income is only $5800.
In most of India, people have no need for winter coats, although some places in the Himalayas, such as Dras, do have harsh winters with temperatures as low as -40˚, which is the point where the Celsius and Fahrenheit scales converge. However, most of the country is like New Delhi, the national capital, which reached a high of 46˚ C, or 115˚ F, in June.
The Indian village of Mawsynram, the wettest place on earth, receives an average of 467 inches of rain every year, with most of it coming during the monsoon season that lasts from June through September.
According to the census of 2001, India has 122 major languages and 1599 other languages. The official languages of government are Hindi and English.