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Introduction
Geography
People
Government
Economy
Communications
Transportation
Military
Transnational
Issues
  Introduction Back To Top

Background:
Aryan tribes from the northwest infiltrated onto the Indian subcontinent about 1500 B.C.; their merger with the earlier Dravidian inhabitants created the classical Indian culture. The Maurya Empire of the 4th and 3rd centuries B.C. - which reached its zenith under ASHOKA - united much of South Asia. The Golden Age ushered in by the Gupta dynasty (4th to 6th centuries A.D.) saw a flowering of Indian science, art, and culture. Arab incursions starting in the 8th century and Turkic in the 12th were followed by those of European traders, beginning in the late 15th century. By the 19th century, Britain had assumed political control of virtually all Indian lands. Indian armed forces in the British army played a vital role in both World Wars. Nonviolent resistance to British colonialism led by Mohandas GANDHI and Jawaharlal NEHRU brought independence in 1947. The subcontinent was divided into the secular state of India and the smaller Muslim state of Pakistan. A third war between the two countries in 1971 resulted in East Pakistan becoming the separate nation of Bangladesh. India's nuclear weapons testing in 1998 caused Pakistan to conduct its own tests that same year. Despite impressive gains in economic investment and output, India faces pressing problems such as significant overpopulation, environmental degradation, extensive poverty, and ethnic and religious strife.

  Geography Back To Top

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
total: 645.84 cu km/yr (8%/5%/86%)
per capita: 585 cu m/yr (2000)

Total renewable water resources:
1,907.8 cu km (1999)

Land boundaries:
total: 14,103 km
border countries: Bangladesh 4,053 km, Bhutan 605 km, Burma 1,463 km, China 3,380 km, Nepal 1,690 km, Pakistan 2,912 km

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Climate:
varies from tropical monsoon in south to temperate in north

Map references:
Asia

Geographic coordinates:
20 00 N, 77 00 E

Natural resources:
coal (fourth-largest reserves in the world), iron ore, manganese, mica, bauxite, titanium ore, chromite, natural gas, diamonds, petroleum, limestone, arable land

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: Kanchenjunga 8,598 m

Terrain:
upland plain (Deccan Plateau) in south, flat to rolling plain along the Ganges, deserts in west, Himalayas in north

Geography - note:
dominates South Asian subcontinent; near important Indian Ocean trade routes; Kanchenjunga, third tallest mountain in the world, lies on the border with Nepal

Area:
total: 3,287,590 sq km
land: 2,973,190 sq km
water: 314,400 sq km

Location:
Southern Asia, bordering the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal, between Burma and Pakistan

Coastline:
7,000 km

Area - comparative:
slightly more than one-third the size of the US

Irrigated land:
558,080 sq km (2003)

Environment - current issues:
deforestation; soil erosion; overgrazing; desertification; air pollution from industrial effluents and vehicle emissions; water pollution from raw sewage and runoff of agricultural pesticides; tap water is not potable throughout the country; huge and growing population is overstraining natural resources

Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Natural hazards:
droughts; flash floods, as well as widespread and destructive flooding from monsoonal rains; severe thunderstorms; earthquakes

Land use:
arable land: 48.83%
permanent crops: 2.8%
other: 48.37% (2005)

  People Back To Top

Total fertility rate:
2.76 children born/woman (2008 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.12 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.1 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.9 male(s)/female
total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2008 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
0.9% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
5.1 million (2001 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 69.25 years
male: 66.87 years
female: 71.9 years (2008 est.)

Major infectious diseases:
degree of risk: high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A and E, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: chikungunya, dengue fever, Japanese encephalitis, and malaria
animal contact disease: rabies
note: highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza has been identified in this country; it poses a negligible risk with extremely rare cases possible among US citizens who have close contact with birds (2008)

Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 61%
male: 73.4%
female: 47.8% (2001 census)

Net migration rate:
-0.05 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Ethnic groups:
Indo-Aryan 72%, Dravidian 25%, Mongoloid and other 3% (2000)

Median age:
total: 25.1 years
male: 24.7 years
female: 25.5 years (2008 est.)

Population:
1,147,995,904 (July 2008 est.)

Education expenditures:
3.2% of GDP (2005)

Population growth rate:
1.578% (2008 est.)

Languages:
Hindi 41%, Bengali 8.1%, Telugu 7.2%, Marathi 7%, Tamil 5.9%, Urdu 5%, Gujarati 4.5%, Kannada 3.7%, Malayalam 3.2%, Oriya 3.2%, Punjabi 2.8%, Assamese 1.3%, Maithili 1.2%, other 5.9%
note: English enjoys associate status but is the most important language for national, political, and commercial communication; Hindi is the national language and primary tongue of 41% of the people; there are 14 other official languages: Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, Tamil, Urdu, Gujarati, Malayalam, Kannada, Oriya, Punjabi, Assamese, Kashmiri, Sindhi, and Sanskrit; Hindustani is a popular variant of Hindi/Urdu spoken widely throughout northern India but is not an official language (2001 census)

Death rate:
6.4 deaths/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Infant mortality rate:
total: 32.31 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 36.94 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 27.12 deaths/1,000 live births (2008 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths:
310,000 (2001 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 10 years
male: 11 years
female: 9 years (2005)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 31.5% (male 189,238,487/female 172,168,306)
15-64 years: 63.3% (male 374,157,581/female 352,868,003)
65 years and over: 5.2% (male 28,285,796/female 31,277,725) (2008 est.)

Birth rate:
22.22 births/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Religions:
Hindu 80.5%, Muslim 13.4%, Christian 2.3%, Sikh 1.9%, other 1.8%, unspecified 0.1% (2001 census)

Nationality:
noun: Indian(s)
adjective: Indian

  Government Back To Top

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador David C. MULFORD
embassy: Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110021
mailing address: use embassy street address
telephone: [91] (011) 2419-8000
FAX: [91] (11) 2419-0017
consulate(s) general: Chennai (Madras), Kolkata (Calcutta), Mumbai (Bombay)

National holiday:
Republic Day, 26 January (1950)

Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal

Government type:
federal republic

Political pressure groups and leaders:
All Parties Hurriyat Conference in the Kashmir Valley (separatist group); Bajrang Dal (religious organization); National Socialist Council of Nagaland in the northeast (separatist group); Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (religious organization); Vishwa Hindu Parishad (religious organization
other: numerous religious or militant/chauvinistic organizations; various separatist groups seeking greater communal and/or regional autonomy

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Ranendra Ronen SEN
chancery: 2107 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008; note - Consular Wing located at 2536 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 939-7000
FAX: [1] (202) 265-4351
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, New York, San Francisco

International organization participation:
ADB, AfDB (nonregional members), ARF, ASEAN (dialogue partner), BIMSTEC, BIS, C, CERN (observer), CP, EAS, FAO, G-15, G-20, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, LAS (observer), MIGA, MONUC, NAM, OAS (observer), OPCW, PCA, PIF (partner), SAARC, SACEP, SCO (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNDOF, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNITAR, UNMIS, UNMIT, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Legislative branch:
bicameral Parliament or Sansad consists of the Council of States or Rajya Sabha (a body consisting of not more than 250 members up to 12 of whom are appointed by the president, the remainder are chosen by the elected members of the state and territorial assemblies; members serve six-year terms) and the People's Assembly or Lok Sabha (545 seats; 543 elected by popular vote, 2 appointed by the president; members serve five-year terms)
elections: People's Assembly - last held 20 April through 10 May 2004 (next must be held by May 2009)
election results: People's Assembly - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party (as of July 2008 confidence vote) - INC 153, BJP 122, CPI (M) 42, SP 33, RJD 24, BSP 17, DMK 16, NCP 11, SS 11, BJD 10, CPI 10, SAD 7, JD (U) 6, PMK 6, JMM 5, LJSP 4, TDP 3, MDMK 2, TRS 2, independent 6, other 27, vacant 2; note - 20 members expelled from their party for failing to vote against the government; 6 members expelled from their party for failing to vote to support the government

Legal system:
based on English common law; judicial review of legislative acts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; separate personal law codes apply to Muslims, Christians, and Hindus

Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of saffron (subdued orange) (top), white, and green with a blue chakra (24-spoked wheel) centered in the white band; similar to the flag of Niger, which has a small orange disk centered in the white band

Independence:
15 August 1947 (from UK)

Country name (Goverment):
conventional long form: Republic of India
conventional short form: India
local long form: Republic of India/Bharatiya Ganarajya
local short form: India/Bharat

Political parties and leaders:
Bahujan Samaj Party or BSP [MAYAWATI]; Bharatiya Janata Party or BJP [Rajnath SINGH]; Biju Janata Dal or BJD [Naveen PATNAIK]; Communist Party of India or CPI [Ardhendu Bhushan BARDHAN]; Communist Party of India-Marxist or CPI-M [Prakash KARAT]; Dravida Munnetra Kazagham or DMK [M. KARUNANIDHI]; Indian National Congress or INC [Sonia GANDHI]; Janata Dal (United) or JD(U) [Sharad YADAV]; Jharkhand Mukti Morcha or JMM [Shibu SOREN]; Left Front (an alliance of Indian leftist parties); Lok Jan Shakti Party or LJSP [Ram Vilas PASWAN]; Nationalist Congress Party or NCP [Sharad PAWAR]; Pattali Makkal Katchi or PMK [S. RAMADOSS]; Rashtriya Janata Dal or RJD [Laloo Prasad YADAV]; Samajwadi Party or SP [Mulayam Singh YADAV]; Shiromani Akali Dal or SAD [Parkash Singh BADAL]; Shiv Sena or SS [Bal THACKERAY]; note - India has dozens of national and regional political parties; only parties or coalitions with four or more seats in the People's Assembly are listed

Capital:
name: New Delhi
geographic coordinates: 28 36 N, 77 12 E
time difference: UTC+5.5 (10.5 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Constitution:
26 January 1950; amended many times

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Pratibha PATIL (since 25 July 2007); Vice President Hamid ANSARI (since 11 August 2007)
head of government: Prime Minister Manmohan SINGH (since 22 May 2004)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister
elections: president elected by an electoral college consisting of elected members of both houses of Parliament and the legislatures of the states for a five-year term (no term limits); election last held in July 2007 (next to be held in July 2012); vice president elected by both houses of Parliament for a five-year term; election last held in August 2007 (next to be held August 2012); prime minister chosen by parliamentary members of the majority party following legislative elections; election last held April - May 2004 (next to be held no later than May 2009)
election results: Pratibha PATIL elected president; percent of vote - 65.8%; Bhairon Singh SHEKHAWAT - 34.2%

Administrative divisions:
28 states and 7 union territories*; Andaman and Nicobar Islands*, Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chandigarh*, Chhattisgarh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli*, Daman and Diu*, Delhi*, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Lakshadweep*, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Orissa, Puducherry*, Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal

Judicial branch:
Supreme Court (one chief justice and 25 associate justices are appointed by the president and remain in office until they reach the age of 65 or are removed for "proved misbehavior")

  Economy Back To Top

Exports - partners:
US 15%, China 8.7%, UAE 8.7%, UK 4.4% (2007)

Electricity - consumption:
517.2 billion kWh (2006 est.)

Central bank discount rate:
6% (31 December 2007)

Electricity - imports:
3.189 billion kWh (2006 est.)

Current account balance:
-$38.39 billion (2008 est.)

Debt - external:
$163.8 billion (31 December 2008 est.)

Unemployment rate:
6.8% (2008 est.)

Oil - exports:
450,700 bbl/day (2005 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
$2,900 (2008 est.)

Investment (gross fixed):
34.6% of GDP (2008 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:
$769.3 billion (31 December 2007)

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$3.319 trillion (2008 est.)

GDP (official exchange rate):
$1.237 trillion (2008 est.)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:
36.8 (2004)

Exchange rates:
Indian rupees (INR) per US dollar - 43.319 (2008 est.), 41.487 (2007), 45.3 (2006), 44.101 (2005), 45.317 (2004)

GDP - real growth rate:
7.3% (2008 est.)

Stock of money:
$250.9 billion (31 December 2007)

Labor force:
523.5 million (2008 est.)

Imports - partners:
China 10.6%, US 7.8%, Germany 4.4%, Singapore 4.4% (2007)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
7.8% (2008 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 17.2%
industry: 29.1%
services: 53.7% (2008 est.)

Oil - imports:
2.159 million bbl/day (2005 est.)

Exports:
$175.7 billion f.o.b. (2008 est.)

Natural gas - consumption:
41.7 billion cu m (2007 est.)

Currency (code):
Indian rupee (INR)

Economy - overview:
India's diverse economy encompasses traditional village farming, modern agriculture, handicrafts, a wide range of modern industries, and a multitude of services. Services are the major source of economic growth, accounting for more than half of India's output with less than one third of its labor force. About three-fifths of the work force is in agriculture, leading the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government to articulate an economic reform program that includes developing basic infrastructure to improve the lives of the rural poor and boost economic performance. The government has reduced controls on foreign trade and investment. Higher limits on foreign direct investment were permitted in a few key sectors, such as telecommunications. However, tariff spikes in sensitive categories, including agriculture, and incremental progress on economic reforms still hinder foreign access to India's vast and growing market. Privatization of government-owned industries remains stalled and continues to generate political debate; populist pressure from within the UPA government and from its Left Front allies continues to restrain needed initiatives. The economy has posted an average growth rate of more than 7% in the decade since 1997, reducing poverty by about 10 percentage points. India achieved 8.5% GDP growth in 2006, 9.0% in 2007, and 7.3% in 2008, significantly expanding production of manufactures. India is capitalizing on its large numbers of well-educated people skilled in the English language to become a major exporter of software services and software workers. Economic expansion has helped New Delhi continue to make progress in reducing its federal fiscal deficit. However, strong growth combined with easy consumer credit and a real estate boom fueled inflation concerns in 2006-08, leading to a series of central bank interest rate hikes that have slowed credit growth and eased inflation concerns. The huge and growing population is the fundamental social, economic, and environmental problem.

Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2007 est.)

Imports - commodities:
crude oil, machinery, gems, fertilizer, chemicals

Industries:
textiles, chemicals, food processing, steel, transportation equipment, cement, mining, petroleum, machinery, software

Electricity - exports:
378 million kWh (2006 est.)

Population below poverty line:
25% (2007 est.)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
13.02% (31 December 2007)

Stock of quasi money:
$647.3 billion (31 December 2007)

Electricity - production:
665.3 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Imports:
$287.5 billion f.o.b. (2008 est.)

Oil - proved reserves:
5.625 billion bbl (1 January 2008 est.)

Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 60%
industry: 12%
services: 28% (2003)

Natural gas - proved reserves:
1.075 trillion cu m (1 January 2008 est.)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$274.2 billion (31 December 2008 est.)

Oil - consumption:
2.722 million bbl/day (2007 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$54.21 billion (2008 est.)

Public debt:
59% of GDP (federal and state debt combined) (2008 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$142.9 billion (2008 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$1.819 trillion (31 December 2007)

Currency code:
INR

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 3.6%
highest 10%: 31.1% (2004)

Exports - commodities:
petroleum products, textile goods, gems and jewelry, engineering goods, chemicals, leather manufactures

Economic aid - recipient:
$1.724 billion (2005)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 81.7%
hydro: 14.5%
nuclear: 3.4%
other: 0.3% (2001)

Natural gas - imports:
10 billion cu m (2007 est.)

Natural gas - production:
31.7 billion cu m (2007 est.)

Budget:
revenues: $153.5 billion
expenditures: $205.3 billion (2008 est.)

Fiscal year:
1 April - 31 March

Oil - production:
880,500 bbl/day (2007 est.)

  Communications Back To Top

Internet users:
80 million (2007)

Telephones - main lines in use:
38.76 million (2008)

Televisions:
63 million (1997)

Internet country code:
.in

Radio broadcast stations:
AM 153, FM 91, shortwave 68 (1998)

Radios:
116 million (1997)

Telephones - mobile cellular:
296.08 million (2008)

Television broadcast stations:
562 (1997)

Telephone system:
general assessment: recent deregulation and liberalization of telecommunications laws and policies have prompted rapid growth; local and long distance service provided throughout all regions of the country, with services primarily concentrated in the urban areas; steady improvement is taking place with the recent admission of private and private-public investors, but combined fixed and mobile telephone density remains low at about 30 for each 100 persons nationwide and much lower for persons in rural areas; rapid growth in cellular service with modest declines in fixed lines
domestic: mobile cellular service introduced in 1994 and organized nationwide into four metropolitan areas and 19 telecom circles each with about three private service providers and one state-owned service provider; in recent years significant trunk capacity added in the form of fiber-optic cable and one of the world's largest domestic satellite systems, the Indian National Satellite system (INSAT), with 6 satellites supporting 33,000 very small aperture terminals (VSAT)
international: country code - 91; a number of major international submarine cable systems, including Sea-Me-We-3 with landing sites at Cochin and Mumbai (Bombay), Sea-Me-We-4 with a landing site at Chennai, Fiber-Optic Link Around the Globe (FLAG) with a landing site at Mumbai (Bombay), South Africa - Far East (SAFE) with a landing site at Cochin, the i2i cable network linking to Singapore with landing sites at Mumbai (Bombay) and Chennai (Madras), and Tata Indicom linking Singapore and Chennai (Madras), provide a significant increase in the bandwidth available for both voice and data traffic; satellite earth stations - 8 Intelsat (Indian Ocean) and 1 Inmarsat (Indian Ocean region); 9 gateway exchanges operating from Mumbai (Bombay), New Delhi, Kolkata (Calcutta), Chennai (Madras), Jalandhar, Kanpur, Gandhinagar, Hyderabad, and Ernakulam (2008)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
43 (2000)

Internet hosts:
2.707 million (2008)

  Transportation Back To Top

Waterways:
14,500 km
note: 5,200 km on major rivers and 485 km on canals suitable for mechanized vessels (2008)

Pipelines:
condensate/gas 9 km; gas 7,488 km; liquid petroleum gas 1,861 km; oil 7,883 km; refined products 6,422 km (2007)

Railways:
total: 63,221 km
broad gauge: 46,807 km 1.676-m gauge (17,343 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 13,290 km 1.000-m gauge (165 km electrified); 3,124 km 0.762-m gauge and 0.610-m gauge (2006)

Ports and terminals:
Chennai, Haldia, Jawaharal Nehru, Kandla, Kolkata (Calcutta), Mormugao, Mumbai (Bombay), New Mangalore, Vishakhapatnam

Heliports:
30 (2007)

Merchant marine:
total: 501
by type: bulk carrier 102, cargo 241, carrier 1, chemical tanker 19, container 13, liquefied gas 18, passenger 3, passenger/cargo 11, petroleum tanker 92, roll on/roll off 1
foreign-owned: 12 (China 1, Germany 2, Hong Kong 1, UAE 6, UK 2)
registered in other countries: 61 (Barbados 1, Comoros 2, Cyprus 2, Dominica 2, Liberia 2, Malta 2, Marshall Islands 1, Panama 27, Saint Kitts and Nevis 1, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 7, Singapore 13, unknown 1) (2008)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 250
over 3,047 m: 18
2,438 to 3,047 m: 52
1,524 to 2,437 m: 75
914 to 1,523 m: 84
under 914 m: 21 (2007)

Roadways:
total: 3,316,452 km (includes 200 km of expressways) (2006)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 96
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 7
914 to 1,523 m: 40
under 914 m: 47 (2007)

Airports:
346 (2007)

  Military Back To Top

Military service age and obligation:
16 years of age for voluntary military service; no conscription; women officers allowed in noncombat roles only (2008)

Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 301,094,084
females age 16-49: 283,047,141 (2008 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 231,161,111
females age 16-49: 236,633,962 (2008 est.)

Military branches:
Army, Navy (includes naval air arm), Air Force (Bharatiya Vayu Sena), Coast Guard (2008)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 11,592,516
female: 10,636,857 (2008 est.)

Military expenditures:
2.5% of GDP (2006)

  Transnational Issues Back To Top

Disputes - international:
since China and India launched a security and foreign policy dialogue in 2005, consolidated discussions related to the dispute over most of their rugged, militarized boundary, regional nuclear proliferation, Indian claims that China transferred missiles to Pakistan, and other matters continue; various talks and confidence-building measures have cautiously begun to defuse tensions over Kashmir, particularly since the October 2005 earthquake in the region; Kashmir nevertheless remains the site of the world's largest and most militarized territorial dispute with portions under the de facto administration of China (Aksai Chin), India (Jammu and Kashmir), and Pakistan (Azad Kashmir and Northern Areas); India and Pakistan have maintained the 2004 cease fire in Kashmir and initiated discussions on defusing the armed stand-off in the Siachen glacier region; Pakistan protests India's fencing the highly militarized Line of Control and construction of the Baglihar Dam on the Chenab River in Jammu and Kashmir, which is part of the larger dispute on water sharing of the Indus River and its tributaries; UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) has maintained a small group of peacekeepers since 1949; India does not recognize Pakistan's ceding historic Kashmir lands to China in 1964; to defuse tensions and prepare for discussions on a maritime boundary, India and Pakistan seek technical resolution of the disputed boundary in Sir Creek estuary at the mouth of the Rann of Kutch in the Arabian Sea; Pakistani maps continue to show its Junagadh claim in Indian Gujarat State; discussions with Bangladesh remain stalled to delimit a small section of river boundary, to exchange territory for 51 Bangladeshi exclaves in India and 111 Indian exclaves in Bangladesh, to allocate divided villages, and to stop illegal cross-border trade, migration, violence, and transit of terrorists through the porous border; Bangladesh protests India's attempts to fence off high-traffic sections of the border; dispute with Bangladesh over New Moore/South Talpatty/Purbasha Island in the Bay of Bengal deters maritime boundary delimitation; India seeks cooperation from Bhutan and Burma to keep Indian Nagaland and Assam separatists from hiding in remote areas along the borders; Joint Border Committee with Nepal continues to examine contested boundary sections, including the 400 square kilometer dispute over the source of the Kalapani River; India maintains a strict border regime to keep out Maoist insurgents and control illegal cross-border activities from Nepal

Refugees and internally displaced persons:
refugees (country of origin): 77,200 (Tibet/China); 69,609 (Sri Lanka); 9,472 (Afghanistan)
IDPs: at least 600,000 (about half are Kashmiri Pandits from Jammu and Kashmir) (2007)

Trafficking in persons:
current situation: India is a source, destination, and transit country for men, women, and children trafficked for the purposes of forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation; internal forced labor may constitute India's largest trafficking problem; men, women, and children are held in debt bondage and face forced labor working in brick kilns, rice mills, agriculture, and embroidery factories; women and girls are trafficked within the country for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation and forced marriage; children are subjected to forced labor as factory workers, domestic servants, beggars, and agriculture workers, and have been used as armed combatants by some terrorist and insurgent groups; India is also a destination for women and girls from Nepal and Bangladesh trafficked for the purpose of commercial sexual exploitation; Indian women are trafficked to the Middle East for commercial sexual exploitation; men and women from Bangladesh and Nepal are trafficked through India for forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation in the Middle East
tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List - India is on the Tier 2 Watch List for a fifth consecutive year for its failure to provide evidence of increasing efforts to combat human trafficking in 2007; despite the reported extent of the trafficking crisis in India, government authorities made uneven efforts to prosecute traffickers and protect trafficking victims; government authorities continued to rescue victims of commercial sexual exploitation and forced child labor and child armed combatants, and began to show progress in law enforcement against these forms of trafficking; a critical challenge overall is the lack of punishment for traffickers, effectively resulting in impunity for acts of human trafficking; India has not ratified the 2000 UN TIP Protocol (2008)

Illicit drugs:
world's largest producer of licit opium for the pharmaceutical trade, but an undetermined quantity of opium is diverted to illicit international drug markets; transit point for illicit narcotics produced in neighboring countries and throughout Southwest Asia; illicit producer of methaqualone; vulnerable to narcotics money laundering through the hawala system; licit ketamine and precursor production

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