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India by the numbers

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India

(CNN) -- India, the world's second most populous nation and its 10th largest economy, is on the rise and bidding for superpower status.

After years of having a virtually closed economy, the world's largest democracy flung open its doors to the world in 1991.

IT hubs, Mercedes cars and a burgeoning middle class have taken over from the popular image of saris, snake-charmers and slums.

But many in the countryside have become mere spectators to the drama unfolding in the cities, with 390 million living on less than $1 a day.

Since independence from Britain, the nuclear power has also had a testy relationship with arch-rival Pakistan, leading to three wars between them, and a tense standoff in 2001.

Within its own borders -- which stretch from the Himalayas in the north, the Thar Desert in the east and the Indian Ocean in the south -- caste, religion and communal tensions simmer, at times threatening to disrupt the secular state.

India's soaring population is proving a challenge as leaders seek to protect the land that is home to one of the world's oldest civilizations, and which has seen the invasions of Aryan tribes, Arab incursions and European traders.

Below are the key facts behind the chaotic, colorful and always memorable India of today:

The people

Population: 1,080,264,388 (July 2005 estimate)
Sex ratio: 1.05 male/female at birth
Median age: 24.66 years, 24.64 years for males, 24.67 years for females (2005 est.)
Population growth rate: 1.4 percent (2005 estimate)
Religions: Hindu 80.5 percent, Muslim 13.4 percent, Christian 2.3 percent, Sikh 1.9 percent, other 1.8 percent, unspecified 0.1 percent (2001 census)
Ethnic groups: Indo-Aryan 72 percent; Dravidian 25 percent; Mongoloid and other 3 percent (2000 estimate)
Infant mortality rate: Estimates vary from 56 to 65 deaths per 1,000 live births
Total fertility rate: 2.78 children children born per female (2005 est.)
Life expectancy: Estimates place overall figure at about 64 years; male 63.57; female 65.16 (2005 estimate)
People living with HIV/AIDS: 5.1 million (2001 estimate)
Major infectious diseases:
Floodwater diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hep A and E, typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever, malaria, and Japanese encephalitis are high risks in some locations animal contact disease: rabies (2004)
Languages: English is used for national, political and commercial communication; Hindi is the national language and primary tongue of 30% of the people; there are 14 other official languages
Literacy: Defined as age 15+ and can read and write - total population: 59.5 percent; male: 70.2 percent, female: 48.3 percent (2003 est.)

The land

Border countries: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, China, Nepal and Pakistan
Coastline: 7,000 kilometers (4,349.8 miles)
Climate: Tropical monsoon in south, temperate in north
Lowest point: Indian Ocean, sea level
Highest point: Kanchenjunga, 8,598 meters (26,246 feet)
Natural resources: Coal (Fourth-largest reserve in world), iron ore, manganese, mica, bauxite, titanium ore, chromite, natural gas, diamonds, petroleum, limestone, arable lands
Land use: Arable lands 54.4 percent; permanent crops 2.74 percent; other 42.86 percent
Natural hazards: Droughts; flash floods, as well as widespread and destructive flooding from monsoon rains; severe thunderstorms; earthquakes

The economy

GDP real growth rate: 6.2 percent (2004 estimate)
GDP per capita: Purchasing power parity - $3,100 (2004 est.)
Public debt: 59.7 percent of GDP (federal debt only; state debt not included) (2004 est.)
Labor force: 482 million (2004 estimate)
Labor force by occupation: Agriculture 60 percent; industry 17 percent; services 23 percent (1999 estimate)
Unemployment rate: 9.2 percent (2004 estimate)
Population below poverty line: Estimates range between 25 percent and 29 percent
Oil production: 780,000 bbl/day (2004 estimate)
Oil consumption: 2.13 million bbl/day (2001 estimate)
Export partners: U.S. 18.4 percent; China 7.8 percent; UAE 6.7 percent; UK 4.8 percent; Hong Kong 4.3 percent; Germany 4 percent (2004 estimate)
Import partners: U.S. 7 percent; Belgium 6.1 percent; China 5.9 percent; Singapore 4.8 percent; Australia 4.6 percent; UK 4.6 percent; Germany 4.5 percent (2004 percent)

The networks

Phone lines in use: 48.9 million (2003)
Mobile/cellular phones: 26,154,400 (2003)
Radio broadcast stations: 153 AM; 91 FM; 68 shortwave (1998)
TV broadcast stations: 562 (of which 82 stations have 1 kW or greater power and 480 stations have less than 1 kW of power) (1997)
Internet country code: .in
Internet hosts: 86,871 (2003)
Internet users: 18.5 million (2003)

The government

Country name: Conventional long form: Republic of India, short form: India
Government type: Federal republic
Capital: New Delhi
Administrative divisions: 28 states and 7 union territories
Independence: 15 August 1947 (from UK)
National holiday: Republic Day, 26 January (1950)
Constitution: 26 January 1950; amended many times
Legal system: Based on English common law; limited judicial review of legislative acts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations; separate personal law codes apply to Muslims, Christians, and Hindus
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Military manpower: Fit for military service: males age 16-49: 219,471,999 (2005 est.)
Military expenditures: $17 billion (2004)

Sources: CIA Factbook, World Bank

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