Kathmandu is the capital city and largest city of Nepal with a population of around 1 million. Kathmandu is the largest metropolis in the Himalayan hill region. Nepali is the most spoken language in the city, while English is understood; the City of Temples stands at an elevation of 1,400 metres above sea level in the bowl-shaped Kathmandu Valley of central Nepal. The valley is termed as "Nepal Mandala" and has been the home of Newar culture, a cosmopolitan urban civilisation in the Himalayan foothills; the city was the royal capital of the Kingdom of Nepal and hosts palaces and gardens of the Nepalese aristocracy. It has been home to the headquarters of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation since 1985. Today, it is the seat of government of the Nepalese republic established in 2008. Kathmandu is and has been for many years the centre of Nepal's history, art and economy, it has a multiethnic population within a Buddhist majority. It is the home of the Newars. Religious and cultural festivities form a major part of the lives of people residing in Kathmandu.
Tourism is an important part of the economy. The city is the gateway to the Nepalese Himalayas, home to seven world heritage sites: the Durbar Squares of Hanuman Dhoka and Bhaktapur. There are seven casinos in the city. Historic areas of Kathmandu were damaged by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake on 25 April 2015. Some of the buildings have been restored and some are in the process of reconstruction. NCP’s Bidya Sundar Shakya is the Mayor of Kathmandu Metropolitan city and Hari Prabha Khadgi of Nepali Congress is the deputy mayor. Indigenous Newari term for Kathmandu valley is Yei; the Pahari name Kathmandu comes from Kasthamandap temple. In Sanskrit, Kastha means "Wood" and Maṇḍapa means "Pavilion"; this public pavilion known as Maru Satta: in the Newar language, was rebuilt in 1596 by Biseth in the period of King Laxmi Narsingh Malla. The three-story structure was made of wood and used no iron nails nor supports. According to legend, all the timber used to build the pagoda was obtained from a single tree.
The structure collapsed during a major earthquake on 25 April 2015. The colophons of ancient manuscripts, dated as late as the 20th century, refer to Kathmandu as Kāṣṭhamaṇḍap Mahānagar in Nepal Mandala. Mahānagar means "great city"; the city is called "Kāṣṭhamaṇḍap" in a vow. Thus, Kathmandu is known as Kāṣṭhamaṇḍap. During medieval times, the city was sometimes called Kāntipur; this name is derived from two Sanskrit words -- pur. "Kānti" is a word that stands for "beauty" and is associated with light and "pur" means place. Thus, giving it a meaning as "City of light". Among the indigenous Newar people, Kathmandu is known as Yeṃ Deśa, Patan and Bhaktapur are known as Yala Deśa and Khwopa Deśa. "Yen" is the shorter form of Yambu, which referred to the northern half of Kathmandu. Archaeological excavations in parts of Kathmandu have found evidence of ancient civilisations; the oldest of these findings is a statue, found in Maligaon, dated at 185 AD. The excavation of Dhando Chaitya uncovered a brick with an inscription in Brahmi script.
Archaeologists believe. Stone inscriptions are a ubiquitous element at heritage sites and are key sources for the history of Nepal; the earliest Western reference to Kathmandu appears in an account of Jesuit Fathers Johann Grueber and Albert d'Orville. In 1661, they passed through Nepal on their way from Tibet to India, reported that they reached "Cadmendu", the capital of Nepal kingdom; the ancient history of Kathmandu is described in its traditional legends. According to Swayambhu Purana, present-day Kathmandu was once a huge and deep lake named "Nagdaha", as it was full of snakes; the lake was cut drained by Bodhisatwa Manjusri with his sword, the water was evacuated out from there. He established a city called Manjupattan, made Dharmakar the ruler of the valley land. After some time, a demon named Banasur closed the outlet, the valley again turned into a lake. Lord Krishna came to Nepal, killed Banasur, again drained out the water, he made Bhuktaman the king of Nepal. Kotirudra Samhita of Shiva Purana, Chapter 11, shloka 18 refers to the place as Nayapala city, famous for its Pashupati Shivalinga.
The name Nepal originates from this city Nayapala. Few historical record exists of the period before medieval Licchavis rulers. According to Gopalraj Vansawali, a genealogy of Nepali monarchy, the rulers of Kathmandu Valley before the Licchavis were Gopalas, Aabhirs and Somavanshi; the Kirata dynasty was established by Yalamber. During the Kirata era, a settlement called. In some of the Sino-Tibetan languages, Kathmandu is still called Yambu. Another smaller settlement called Yengal was present in the southern half of old Kathmandu, near Manjupattan. During the reign of the seventh Kirata ruler, Buddhist monks entered Kathmandu valley and established a forest monastery at Sankhu; the Licchavis from the Indo-Gangetic plain migrated north and defeated the Kiratas, establis
Gorkha Kingdom was a kingdom in the confederation of 24 states, known as Chaubisi rajya, located in the Indian subcontinent, present-day western Nepal. The Kingdom of Gorkha extended from the Marshyangdi River in the west to the Trishuli River in the east, which separated it from the kingdoms of Lamjung and Nepal respectively; the Gorkha Kingdom was established by Prince Dravya Shah, second son of King Yasho Brahma Shah of Lamjung Kingdom, on 1559 CE replacing the Khandka chiefs. According to legends, one of the earliest Shah rulers was Rishi-raj Rana-Ji, of the Lunar dynasty, he received the title of Bhattarak. The lunar dynasty remained in power for thirteen generations; the Muslim Yavanas took power. The Bhattarak could only retain his caste family name, Rana-ji; the rajas were titled Rana-Ji for four generations and Rana-ji Rava for a further seventeen generations. Akbar, the Mughal emperor, wished to marry the daughter of Fatte Sinha Rana-Ji Rava. Akbar was refused; this decision led to war.
Many Rajput, including Fatte Sinha Rana-ji Rava, were killed. The survivors of the war were led by Udaybam Rana-Ji Rava, they founded Udaipur. Manmath Rana-Ji Rava went to Ujjain, his son Bhupal Ranaji Rao went to Ridi in the northern hills and in 1417 AD, to Sargha, to Khium in Bhirkot. There, he cultivated the land; the new ruler of Khium had sons and Micha. Their bartabandha was performed. Plans for the boys to marry the daughters of the Raghuvanshi Rajputs were made. Kancha, the elder son went to Dhor, he conquered Mangart and reigned over Garhon and Birkot. Micha, the younger son, became ruler there. From Micha, a dynasty of seven rajas commenced in Nuwakot. Kulamandan, the eldest son of Jagdeva, became ruler of Kaski displacing Gurung king, he was became Shah and succeeded his father. Kalu, the second son was sent to Dura Danda in Lamjung at the people's request to become their king. Kalu was killed by the Sekhant tribe. In the 1500s, another son, became the ruler of Lamjung after he compromised with the Gurungs.
The second son of Yasobramha, Dravya Shah conquered the Ghale people of neighbouring Ligligkot, now in Gorkha. Prince Dravya Shah on 1559 CE replaced the Khandka chiefs to become the first King of Gorkha Kingdom; the ancient name of Gor-kha is Shakya. The following is list of all ten kings of Gorkha hill principality From 1736, the Gorkhalis engaged in a campaign of expansion begun by King Nara Bhupal Shah, continued by his son, King Prithvi Narayan Shah and grandson Prince Bahadur Shah. Over the years, they conquered huge tracts of land to the west of Gorkha. Among their conquests, the most important and valuable acquisition was the wealthy Newar confederacy of Nepal Mandala centered in the Kathmandu Valley. Starting in 1745, the Gorkhalis mounted a blockade in a bid to starve the population into submission, but the inhabitants held out; the Newars appealed to the British East India Company to help, in 1767, it sent an expedition under Captain Kinloch which ended in failure. The three Newar capitals of Kathmandu and Bhaktapur fell to the Gorkhalis between 1768 and 1769.
The Gorkhali king subsequently moved his capital to Kathmandu. In 1788, the Gorkhalis invaded Tibet, they seized the border towns of Kyirong and Kuti, forced the Tibetans to pay an annual tribute. When the Tibetans stopped paying it, the Gorkhalis invaded Tibet again in 1791 and plundered the Tashilhunpo Monastery in Shigatse; this time the Chinese army came to Tibet's defence and advanced close to Kathmandu but couldn't achieve success due to strong counterattack with Khukuri. The anxious Bahadur Shah asked for 10 howitzer mountain guns from the British East India Company. Captain William Kirkpatrick arrived in Kathmandu; the Fu Kanggan was keen to protect his army and war being resultless was concluded by signing a peace treaty at Betrawati. Nepalese–Tibetan War was fought from 1855 to 1856 in Tibet between the forces of the Tibetan government and the invading Nepalese army resulting victory of Nepal; the Gorkha dominion reached its height at the beginning of the 19th century, extending all along the Himalayan foothills from Kumaon and Garhwal in the west to Sikkim in the east.
They were made to return much of the occupied territories after their defeat in the Anglo-Nepalese War during the gorkha Sikh war they lost the control over kangra valley. The Gorkha dominion continued to be known as Gorkha Rajya until the beginning of the 20th century; the name'Nepal' referred to Kathmandu valley, the homeland of the Newars. Since the 1930s, the state began using it to refer to the entire country and'Nepal Khaldo' became'Kathmandu Valley'; the name Gorkha Sarkar was changed to Nepal government. The Gorkhali language was renamed as Nepali in 1933; the term Gorkhali in the former national anthem entitled "Shreeman Gambhir" was changed to Nepali in 1951. The government newspaper, launched in 1901, is still known as Gorkhapatra; the Shah dynasty ruled Nepal until 2008. Today, Gorkha District corresponding to the old kingdom, is one of the 77 administrative districts of Nepal. Not to be confused with the inhabitants of the old Gorkha Kingdom only, the Gurkhas
Vamshidhar Pande known by sobriquet Kalu Pande was Nepalese politician and military general, appointed as Kaji of Gorkha Kingdom. He was born in 1713 A. D in Gorkha, he was the commander of the gorkhali forces during the Expansion Campaign of Nepal. He died in the first Battle of Kirtipur in 1757 A. D, his real name was Banshidhar Pande. He was a son of Kaji Bhimraj Pande, minister during reign of King Prithivipati Shah of Gorkha, he was descendent of Dravya Shah's accomplice Ganesh Pande. He had three sons: Dewan Kajisaheb Vamsharaj Pande, Sardar Ranasur Pande and Mulkaji Sahib Damodar Pande. Kalu Pande was made the Commander-in-Chief of the Gorkhali Army after Biraj Thapa Magar and his first major Battle was the Battle of Kirtipur. Despite his initial resentment that the valley kings were well prepared and the Gorkhalis were not, Pande gave an'Yes' to the operation on being insisted from Prithvi Narayan; the Gorkhalis had set up a base on Naikap, a hill on the valley's western rim, from where they were to mount their assaults on Kirtipur.
They were armed with swords and arrows and muskets. The Valley Kings brought a large number of Doyas from Indian Plains under Shaktiballabh sardar. During the first assault in 1757, the Gorkhali army killed 1200 enemies Doyas, but were badly beaten themselves. Both sides suffered heavy losses; as they advanced towards Kirtipur, the combined force of Valley Kings under Kaji Gangadhar Jha, Kaji Gangaram Thapa and Sardar Shaktiballabh brought Havoc to the outnumbered Gorkhalis. The two forces fought on the plain of Tyangla Phant in the northwest of Kirtipur. Surapratap Shah, the King's brother lost his right eye to an arrow while scaling the city wall; the Gorkhali commander Kaji Kalu Pande was surrounded and killed, the Gorkhali king himself narrowly escaped with his life into the surrounding hills disguised as a saint
Hardwood is wood from dicot trees. These are found in broad-leaved temperate and tropical forests. In temperate and boreal latitudes they are deciduous, but in tropics and subtropics evergreen. Hardwood contrasts with softwood. Hardwoods are produced by angiosperm trees that reproduce by flowers, have broad leaves. Many species are deciduous; those of temperate regions lose their leaves every autumn as temperatures fall and are dormant in the winter, but those of tropical regions may shed their leaves in response to seasonal or sporadic periods of drought. Hardwood from deciduous species, such as oak shows annual growth rings, but these may be absent in some tropical hardwoods. Hardwoods have a more complex structure than softwoods and are much slower growing as a result; the dominant feature separating "hardwoods" from softwoods is vessels. The vessels may show considerable variation in size, shape of perforation plates, structure of cell wall, such as spiral thickenings; as the name suggests, the wood from these trees is harder than that of softwoods, but there are significant exceptions.
In both groups there is an enormous variation in actual wood hardness, with the range in density in hardwoods including that of softwoods. Hardwoods are employed in a large range of applications, including fuel, construction, boat building, furniture making, musical instruments, cooking and manufacture of charcoal. Solid hardwood joinery tends to be expensive compared to softwood. In the past, tropical hardwoods were available, but the supply of some species, such as Burma teak and mahogany, is now becoming scarce due to over-exploitation. Cheaper "hardwood" doors, for instance, now consist of a thin veneer bonded to a core of softwood, plywood or medium-density fibreboard. Hardwoods may be used in a variety of objects, but are most seen in furniture or musical instruments because of their density which adds to durability and performance. Different species of hardwood lend themselves to different end uses or construction processes; this is due to the variety of characteristics apparent in different timbers, including density, pore size and fibre pattern and ability to be steam bent.
For example, the interlocked grain of elm wood makes it suitable for the making of chair seats where the driving in of legs and other components can cause splitting in other woods. There is a correlation between calories/volume; this makes the denser hardwoods like oak and apple more suited for camp fires, cooking fires, smoking meat, as they tend to burn hotter and longer than softwoods like pine or cedar whose low-density construction and highly-flammable sap make them burn and without producing quite as much heat. List of woods Hardwood flooring Softwood Janka hardness test Brinell scale Schweingruber, F. H. Anatomie europäischer Hölzer—Anatomy of European woods. Eidgenössische Forschungsanstalt für Wald, Schnee und Landscaft, Birmensdorf. Haupt, Bern und Stuttgart. Timonen, Tuuli. Introduction to Microscopic Wood Identification. Finnish Museum of Natural History, University of Helsinki. Wilson, K. and D. J. B. White; the Anatomy of Wood: Its Diversity and variability. Stobart & Son Ltd, London. Center for Wood Anatomy Research
The Chindits, known as the Long Range Penetration Groups, were special operations units of the British and Indian armies, which saw action in 1943–1944, during the Burma Campaign of World War II. The creation of British Army Brigadier Orde Charles Wingate, the Chindits were formed for raiding operations against the Imperial Japanese Army long-range penetration: attacking Japanese troops and lines of communication, deep behind Japanese lines, their operations were marked by prolonged marches through difficult terrain, by underfed troops weakened by diseases such as malaria and dysentery. There is controversy over the high casualty rate and the debatable military value of the achievements of the Chindits. During the East African Campaign of 1940–41, Wingate – under General Archibald Wavell, Commander-in-Chief of the Middle East Command – had begun to explore guerilla tactics, when he created and commanded a unit known as Gideon Force, composed of regular troops from Sudan and Ethiopia, as well as Ethiopean partisans.
Gideon Force collected intelligence. In 1942, after the disbandment of Gideon Force, Wavell – who had since been appointed Commander-in-Chief of the India Command – requested the services of Wingate in Burma, it was intended that he would raise irregular forces to operate behind the Japanese lines, in a manner similar to Gideon Force. Wingate arrived in Burma in March 1942 and for two months, as Japanese forces advanced toured the country developing his theories of long-range penetration, during the two months preceding the Japanese conquest of Burma. After returning to Delhi, he presented his proposals to Wavell; the name Chindits was suggested by Captain Aung Thin of the Burma Rifles. Chindit is a corrupted form of the Burmese mythical beast Chinthé or Chinthay, statues of which guarded Buddhist temples; the first Chindit unit, the 77th Indian Infantry Brigade, was formed in the area around Jhansi in the summer of 1942. Wingate took charge of the training of the troops in the jungles of central India during the rainy season.
Half of the Chindits were British: the 13th Battalion, the King's Liverpool Regiment and men from the former Bush Warfare School in Burma, who were formed into 142 Commando Company. The other portion of the force consisted of the 3rd Battalion, the 2nd Gurkha Rifles and the 2nd Battalion, the Burma Rifles. Wingate trained this force as long-range penetration units that were to be supplied by stores parachuted or dropped from transport aircraft, were to use close air support as a substitute for heavy artillery, they would penetrate the jungle on foot relying on surprise through mobility to target enemy lines of communication. The standard brigade and battalion structures were abandoned; the force was instead formed into eight columns, each of, organised as: an infantry rifle company. Small detachments from the Royal Air Force, Royal Corps of Signals and Royal Army Medical Corps were attached to the column headquarters; the heavy weapons, reserve ammunition and rations and other stores were carried on mules, which would provide an emergency source of food once their loads had been depleted.
With 57 mule handlers, each British column numbered 306 men. Each man carried more than 72 pounds of equipment, proportionally more than the mules carrying the support weapons and other stores; this included a personal weapon, such as the SMLE rifle or Sten Gun, grenades, a machete or Gurkha kukri knife, seven days' rations, change of uniform and other assorted items. Much of this load was carried in an Everest carrier, a metal rucksack frame without a pack. Shortly before the first operation, one column was broken up to bring the remaining seven up to full strength. Two or more columns were commanded by a group headquarters, which in turn was commanded by the brigade headquarters; the original intent had been to use the Chindits as a part of a larger offensive. When this offensive was cancelled, Wingate convinced General Wavell to send the Chindits into Burma anyway. Accordingly, on 8 February 1943, Operation Longcloth commenced and 3,000 Chindits, Wingate with them, began their march into Burma.
The Chindits crossed the Chindwin River on 13 February and faced the first Japanese troops two days later. Two columns marched to the south and received their air supply drops in broad daylight to create an impression that they were the main attack, they had a man impersonating a British general along with them. The RAF mounted air attacks on Japanese targets to support the deception; these columns were to swing east at the beginning of March and attack the main north-south railway in areas south of the main force. One column carried out demolitions along the railway, but the other column was ambushed. Half of the ambushed column returned to India. Five other columns proceeded eastward. Two, those of Michael Calvert and Bernard Fergusson, proceeded towards the main north-south railway in Burma. On
Nepal the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked country in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas but includes parts of the Indo-Gangetic Plain. With an estimated population of 26.4 million, it is 48th largest country by population and 93rd largest country by area. It borders China in the north and India in the south and west while Bangladesh is located within only 27 km of its southeastern tip and Bhutan is separated from it by the Indian state of Sikkim. Nepal has a diverse geography, including fertile plains, subalpine forested hills, eight of the world's ten tallest mountains, including Mount Everest, the highest point on Earth. Kathmandu is largest city. Nepal is a multiethnic nation with Nepali as the official language; the name "Nepal" is first recorded in texts from the Vedic period of the Indian subcontinent, the era in ancient India when Hinduism was founded, the predominant religion of the country. In the middle of the first millennium BCE, Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism, was born in Lumbini in southern Nepal.
Parts of northern Nepal were intertwined with the culture of Tibet. The centrally located Kathmandu Valley is intertwined with the culture of Indo-Aryans, was the seat of the prosperous Newar confederacy known as Nepal Mandala; the Himalayan branch of the ancient Silk Road was dominated by the valley's traders. The cosmopolitan region developed distinct traditional architecture. By the 18th century, the Gorkha Kingdom achieved the unification of Nepal; the Shah dynasty established the Kingdom of Nepal and formed an alliance with the British Empire, under its Rajput Rana dynasty of premiers. The country was never colonized but served as a buffer state between Imperial China and British India. Parliamentary democracy was introduced in 1951, but was twice suspended by Nepalese monarchs, in 1960 and 2005; the Nepalese Civil War in the 1990s and early 2000s resulted in the proclamation of a secular republic in 2008, ending the world's last Hindu monarchy. The Constitution of Nepal, adopted in 2015, establishes Nepal as a federal secular parliamentary republic divided into seven provinces.
Nepal was admitted to the United Nations in 1955, friendship treaties were signed with India in 1950 and the People's Republic of China in 1960. Nepal hosts the permanent secretariat of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, of which it is a founding member. Nepal is a member of the Non Aligned Movement and the Bay of Bengal Initiative; the military of Nepal is the fifth largest in South Asia. Local legends have it that a Hindu sage named "Ne" established himself in the valley of Kathmandu in prehistoric times, that the word "Nepal" came into existence as the place was protected by the sage "Nemi", it is mentioned in Vedic texts. According to the Skanda Purana, a rishi called. In the Pashupati Purana, he is mentioned as a protector, he is said to have taught there. The name of the country is identical in origin to the name of the Newar people; the terms "Nepāl", "Newār", "Newāl" and "Nepār" are phonetically different forms of the same word, instances of the various forms appear in texts in different times in history.
Nepal is the learned Sanskrit form and Newar is the colloquial Prakrit form. A Sanskrit inscription dated 512 CE found in Tistung, a valley to the west of Kathmandu, contains the phrase "greetings to the Nepals" indicating that the term "Nepal" was used to refer to both the country and the people, it has been suggested that "Nepal" may be a Sanskritization of "Newar", or "Newar" may be a form of "Nepal". According to another explanation, the words "Newar" and "Newari" are vulgarisms arising from the mutation of P to V, L to R. Neolithic tools found in the Kathmandu Valley indicate that people have been living in the Himalayan region for at least eleven thousand years. Nepal is first mentioned in the late Vedic Atharvaveda Pariśiṣṭa as a place exporting blankets, in the post-Vedic Atharvashirsha Upanishad. In Samudragupta's Allahabad Pillar it is mentioned as a border country; the Skanda Purana has a separate chapter, known as "Nepal Mahatmya", with more details. Nepal is mentioned in Hindu texts such as the Narayana Puja.
Legends and ancient texts that mention the region now known as Nepal reach back to the 30th century BC. The Gopal Bansa were one of the earliest inhabitants of Kathmandu valley; the earliest rulers of Nepal were the Kiratas, peoples mentioned in Hindu texts, who ruled Nepal for many centuries. Various sources mention up to 32 Kirati kings. Around 500 BCE, small kingdoms and confederations of clans arose in the southern regions of Nepal. From one of these, the Shakya polity, arose a prince who renounced his status to lead an ascetic life, founded Buddhism, came to be known as Gautama Buddha. By 250 BCE, the southern regions had come under the influence of the Maurya Empire of North India and became a vassal state under the Gupta Empire in the 4th century CE. There is a quite detailed description of the kingdom of Nepal in the account of the renowned Chinese Buddhist pilgrim monk Xuanzang, dating from about 645 CE. Stone inscriptions in the Kathmandu Valley are important sources for the history of Nepal.
The kings of the Lichhavi dynasty have been found to have r
The Indian subcontinent known as the Asian subcontinent and Indo subcontinent, is a southern region and peninsula of Asia situated on the Indian Plate and projecting southwards into the Indian Ocean from the Himalayas. Geologically, the Indian subcontinent is related to the land mass that rifted from Gondwana and merged with the Eurasian plate nearly 55 million years ago. Geographically, it is the peninsular region in south-central Asia delineated by the Himalayas in the north, the Hindu Kush in the west, the Arakanese in the east. Politically, the Indian subcontinent includes Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. Sometimes, the geographical term'Indian subcontinent' is used interchangeably with'South Asia', although that last term is used as a political term and is used to include Afghanistan. Which countries should be included in either of these remains the subject of debate. According to Oxford English Dictionary, the term "subcontinent" signifies a "subdivision of a continent which has a distinct geographical, political, or cultural identity" and a "large land mass somewhat smaller than a continent".
It is first attested in 1845 to refer to the North and South Americas, before they were regarded as separate continents. Its use to refer to the Indian subcontinent is seen from the early twentieth century, it was convenient for referring to the region comprising both British India and the princely states under British Paramountcy. The term Indian subcontinent has a geological significance. Similar to various continents, it was a part of the supercontinent of Gondwana. A series of tectonic splits caused formation of various basins, each drifting in various directions; the geological region called "Greater India" once included Madagascar, Seychelles and Austrolasia along with the Indian subcontinent basin. As a geological term, Indian subcontinent has meant that region formed from the collision of the Indian basin with Eurasia nearly 55 million years ago, towards the end of Paleocene; the geographical region has simply been known as "India". Other related terms are South Asia, and the terms "Indian subcontinent" and "South Asia" are sometimes used interchangeably.
There is no globally accepted definition on which countries are a part of South Asia or the Indian subcontinent. The less common term "South Asian subcontinent" has seen occasional use since the 1970s. Geologically, the Indian subcontinent was first a part of so-called "Greater India", a region of Gondwana that drifted away from East Africa about 160 million years ago, around the Middle Jurassic period; the region experienced high volcanic activity and plate subdivisions, creating Madagascar, Antarctica and the Indian subcontinent basin. The Indian subcontinent drifted northeastwards, colliding with the Eurasian plate nearly 55 million years ago, towards the end of Paleocene; this geological region includes Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. The zone where the Eurasian and Indian subcontinent plates meet remains one of the geologically active areas, prone to major earthquakes; the English term "subcontinent" continues to refer to the Indian subcontinent. Physiographically, it is a peninsular region in south-central Asia delineated by the Himalayas in the north, the Hindu Kush in the west, the Arakanese in the east.
It extends southward into the Indian Ocean with the Arabian Sea to the southwest and the Bay of Bengal to the southeast. Most of this region rests on the Indian Plate and is isolated from the rest of Asia by large mountain barriers. Using the more expansive definition – counting India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Maldives as the constituent countries – the Indian subcontinent covers about 4.4 million km2, 10% of the Asian continent or 3.3% of the world's land surface area. Overall, it is home to a vast array of peoples; the Indian subcontinent is a natural physical landmass in South Asia, geologically the dry-land portion of the Indian Plate, isolated from the rest of Eurasia. Given the difficulty of passage through the Himalayas, the sociocultural and political interaction of the Indian subcontinent has been through the valleys of Afghanistan in its northwest, the valleys of Manipur in its east, by maritime routes. More difficult but important interaction has occurred through passages pioneered by the Tibetans.
These routes and interactions have led to the spread of Buddhism out of the Indian subcontinent into other parts of Asia. And the Islamic expansion arrived into the Indian subcontinent in two ways, through Afghanistan on land and to Indian coast through the maritime routes on the Arabian Sea. Whether called the Indian subcontinent or South Asia, the definition of the geographical extent of this region varies. Geopolitically, it had formed the whole territory of Greater India. In terms of modern geopolitical boundaries, the Indian subcontinent comprises the Republic of India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, besides, by convention, the island nation of Sri Lanka and other islands of the Indian Ocean, such as the Maldives; the term "Indian continent" is first introduced in the early 20th century, when most of the territory was part of British India. The Hindu Kush, centered on eastern Afghanistan, is the boundary connecting the Indian subcontinent with Central Asia to the northwest, the Persian Plateau to the west.
The socio-religious history of Afghanistan are related to the Turkish-influenced Central Asia and no