In terms of area, India is the seventh largest country in the world.

Indian general elections have been held in 1951, 1957, 1962, 1967 (Congress given tough time for the first time by the regional parties), 1971, 1977 (Indira Gandhi lost), 1979 (Indira won again), 1985 (Rajiv Gandhi won after Indira’s assassination), 1989 (Rajiv lost due to Bofors), 1991 (Rao came to cover), 1996 (Vajpayee 13 day government, followed by Gowda and Gujral as PM), 1998 (Vajpayee  becomes PM), 2004 (Congress won again, with Manmohan as PM) and then 2009.

India hosted Asian Games in 1982 under Indira Gandhi and introduced color TV for the first time.

India has 28 States and 7 states directly governed by the Center.,

Navi Bombay, a planned satellite township of Bombay, was developed in 1972 and is the largest planned township on the planet.

A war lasting 27 years was fought between the Maratha Empire and the Mughal Empire from 1681 to 1707. It was the longest recorded military engagement in the history of India.

17slide6[1]In 1955, Jawaharlal Nehru rejected an offer to India of a permanent UN Security Council seat to avoid being embroiled in the cold war politics.

Viswanathan Anand is the first player in chess history to have won the World Championship in three different formats: knockout, tournament, and match.

India is one of only 3 remaining countries in the world to have a horsed cavalry regiment.

Agni III is the most accurate missile in the world in its range category and BrahMos is the fastest operational cruise missile in the world.

The process of crystallization of sugar from sugarcane juice was discovered in India in the Gupta period (350 AD).

Many tribes in India worship Asura and Ravan and consider Vijaya Dashami and Dussehra to be black days.

In 1928, when the Indian Hockey team was on its way to Amsterdam, they played a series of exhibition matches in England. Seeing its calibre, England decided not to field a team for the Olympics as “they did not want to lose to a slave country.”

Lonar Lake, a saltwater lake in Maharashtra, was created by a meteor hitting the Earth and is the only one of its kind in India.

Raj Kapoor’s 1951 film “Awaara” was massively popular in Soviet Russia and China. The film and its title song were Mao Zedong’s (Founder of People’s Republic of China) favorite.

There were two US navy warships called USS Krishna and USS Indra that served during World War II.

Unlike in the Border movie, only 2 Indians died in the battle of  Longewala.

English Actor, Sir Ben Kingsley’s birth name is Krishna Pandit Bhanji and he is of Indian (Gujarati) descent.

Freddie Mercury (Bulsara), British musician, was actually of Gujarati descent.

“John Doe” orders (restraint orders against unknown persons for breach of plaintiff’s rights) are called “Ashok Kumar” orders in India. Likewise, an “unclaimed” or “unidentified” dead body found in a public place is called Ashok Kumar.

The oldest building in Asia is in India. It is the Sanchi Stupa.

Bal Thackeray’s father changed his family name from Thakre to Thackeray after the British writer William Makepeace Thackeray.

There is a species of Shark known as the Ganges Shark that inhabits the River Ganga and it is critically endangered

The first railroad in India was constructed by two Indians (Jamsetjee Jeejeebhoy and Jaganath Shunkerseth) and not the British.

Mount Kailash has never been climbed , in spite of the Chinese government’s support to climbers.

Security at Tihar jail is managed by the Tamil Nadu special police force.

When going to battle Indian kings would have their horses fitted with trunks. The other side’s elephants would refuse to attack the horses thinking that the horses were baby elephants.

If Uttar Pradesh were to be a separate country, it would be world’s fifth most populous country.

There are more poor people in 8 Indian states alone than in the 26 poorest African countries

Bodhidharma, a prince of the Pallava dynasty, went to China and began the physical training of the Shaolin monks that led to the creation of Kung Fu.

A sugar company in Andhra provides rocket fuel to ISRO.

Tipu Sultan used rockets with swords fixed in the front against the British in the Anglo-Mysore Wars.

There is a French electronic band named “Masala Dosa.”

Did you know India has a National Ice Hockey Team?

Govt hiked the payment for the hangman from RS 10 to 5,000 just days before the Kasab hanging.

Ajmal Amir Kasab had a charge recorded against him for entering CST (Victoria Terminus) station without a ticket.

Australia’s Cricketer Stuart Clark is of Indian origin. Both his parents, Bruce Clark and Mary Clark, are Anglo-Indians.

A city named Jhumri Telaiya actually exists in Jharkhand.

There was a Great Hedge built across India by the British  primarily to collect the salt tax. It was 4000 km long and 12 feet in height extending from Punjab to Orissa. None of it remains today.

Kunal Nayyar (Rajesh Koothrappalli from Big Bang Theory) is married to a former Miss India, Neha Kapur.

There is a village called Delhi in New York , USA. There is a city called Madras in Oregon, USA.

India has three antarctic stations, Dakshin Gangotri, Maitri and Bharathi.

After the United States, India has the largest number of English speakers.

During the battle of Rezang La in the 1962 Sino-Indian war a battalion called 13 Kumaon Regiment consisting of a mere 120 soldiers held off 6000 Chinese with heavy artillery killing 1300 of their soldiers.

Bangalored‘ is a word in the Oxford dictionary which came up after heavy outsourcing to India took the world by storm.

One of the oldest colleges of engineering in the world is in Chennai(Madras)… the College of Engineering (Guindy).

There is a village in Assam called  Jatinga where, over the last 100 years, thousands of birds have flown to their death on a small strip of land.

India has the world’s smallest prison population.

The average cost of census taking in India is $0.5 per person (US: $39, World Average: $4.6).

Frozen bank accounts of  Ottavio Quattrocchi were unexpectedly released by India’s law ministry in 2006 apparently without the consent of the CBI which had asked for them to be frozen.

India Post allows you to order personalized stamps with your picture on them.