Postal Index Number
A Postal Index Number, or sometimes redundantly a PIN code, is a code in the post office numbering or postal code system used by India Post, the Indian postal entity. The code is six digits long; the PIN system was introduced on 15 August 1972 by Shriram Bhikaji Velankar, an additional secretary in the Union Ministry of Communications. The system was introduced to simplify the manual sorting and delivery of mail by eliminating confusion over incorrect addresses, similar place names, different languages used by the public. There are nine postal zones including eight regional zones and one functional zone; the first digit of the PIN indicates the zone. The second digit indicates the sub-zone, the third digit indicates the sorting district within that zone; the final three digits are assigned to individual post offices. The first digit of the PIN is allocated over the 9 zones as follows: 1 — Delhi, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Kashmir, Chandigarh 2 — Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand 3 — Rajasthan, Gujarat and Diu, Dadra and Nagar 4 — Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh 5 — Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka 6 — Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Lakshadweep 7 — West Bengal, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Tripura, Meghalaya and Nicobar Islands, Sikkim 8 — Bihar, Jharkhand 9 — Army Post Office and Field Post Office The first three digits of the PIN represent a specific geographical region called a sorting district, headquartered at the main post office of the largest city and is known as the sorting office.
A state may have one or more sorting districts depending on the volume of mail handled. The fourth digit represents the route; this is 0 for offices in the core area of the sorting district. The last two digits represent the delivery office within the sorting district starting from 01 which would be the General Post Office or head office; the numbering of the delivery office is done chronologically with higher numbers assigned to newer delivery offices. If the volume of mails handled at a delivery office is too large, a new delivery office is created and the next available PIN is assigned. Thus, two delivery offices situated next to each other will only have the first four digits in common; each PIN is mapped to one delivery post office which receives all the mail to be delivered to one or more lower offices within its jurisdiction, all of which share the same code. The delivery office can either be a General Post Office, a head office, or a sub-office which are located in urban areas; the post from the delivery office is sorted and routed to other delivery offices for a different PIN or to one of the relevant sub-offices or branch offices for the same PIN.
Branch offices have limited postal services. Find Pincode – India Post
Malayalam is a Dravidian language spoken in the Indian state of Kerala and the union territories of Lakshadweep and Puducherry by the Malayali people, it is one of 22 scheduled languages of India. Malayalam has official language status in the state of Kerala and in the union territories of Lakshadweep and Puducherry and is spoken by 38 million people worldwide. Malayalam is spoken by linguistic minorities in the neighbouring states. Due to Malayali expatriates in the Persian Gulf, the language is widely spoken in Gulf countries; the origin of Malayalam remains a matter of dispute among scholars. One view holds that Malayalam and modern Tamil are offshoots of Middle Tamil and separated from it sometime after the c. 7th century. A second view argues for the development of the two languages out of "Proto-Dravidian" or "Proto-Tamil-Malayalam" in the prehistoric era. Designated a "Classical Language in India" in 2013, it developed into the current form by the influence of the poet Thunchaththu Ezhuthachan in the 16th century.
The oldest documents written purely in Malayalam and still surviving are the Vazhappalli Copper plates from 832 and Tharisapalli Copper plates from 849. The earliest script used to write Malayalam was the Vatteluttu alphabet, the Kolezhuttu, which derived from it; the current Malayalam script is based on the Vatteluttu script, extended with Grantha script letters to adopt Indo-Aryan loanwords. The oldest literary work in Malayalam, distinct from the Tamil tradition, is dated from between the 9th and 11th centuries; the first travelogue in any Indian language is the Malayalam Varthamanappusthakam, written by Paremmakkal Thoma Kathanar in 1785. The word Malayalam originated from the words mala, meaning "mountain", alam, meaning "region" or "-ship"; the term referred to the land of the Chera dynasty Tamil dynasty, only became the name of its language. The language Malayalam is alternatively called Alealum, Malayali, Malean and Mallealle; the earliest extant literary works in the regional language of present-day Kerala date back to as early as the 12th century.
However, the named identity of this language appears to have come into existence only around the 16th century, when it was known as "Malayayma" or "Malayanma". The word "Malayalam" was coined in the period, the local people referred to their language as both "Tamil" and "Malayalam" until the colonial period; the held view is that Malayalam was the western coastal dialect of Tamil and separated from Tamil sometime between the 9th and 13th centuries. Some scholars however believe that both Tamil and Malayalam developed during the prehistoric period from a common ancestor,'Proto-Tamil-Dravidian', that the notion of Malayalam being a'daughter' of Tamil is misplaced; this is based on the fact that Malayalam and several Dravidian languages on the western coast have common features which are not found in the oldest historical forms of Tamil. Robert Caldwell, in his 1856 book "A Comparative Grammar of the Dravidian or South-Indian Family of Languages", opined that Malayalam branched from Classical Tamil and over time gained a large amount of Sanskrit vocabulary and lost the personal terminations of verbs.
As the language of scholarship and administration, Old-Tamil, written in Tamil-Brahmi and the Vatteluttu alphabet greatly influenced the early development of Malayalam. The Malayalam script began to diverge from the Tamil-Brahmi script in the 9th centuries, and by the end of the 13th century a written form of the language emerged, unique from the Tamil-Brahmi script, used to write Tamil. Malayalam is similar to some Sri Lankan Tamil dialects, the two are mistaken by native Indian Tamil speakers; the Portuguese called the Kerala variant of Malayalam-Tamil Lingua Malabar Tamul. It was called Malabar Thamozhi; the first book to be printed in Lingua Malabar Tamul was Cartilha in 1554, which used Portuguese letters to write the Malabar Thamozhi. Ravikutty Pilla Por, written in the 17th century, is the shining example of Malayanma literature. Ananthapuri Varnanam, written in the 1800s, was among the last of these Malayalam-Tamil books. Itty Achudan, the famed Ayurvedic physician, used Malayanma and Kolezhuttu to write Hortus Malabaricus in 1678.
In the 17th century, the Malayanma script was extensively used by the Catholics of Kerala. Samkshepa Vedartham, in Malayanma, was printed in Rome in 1772; the Ramban Bible, written in Malayanma, was translated from Syriac by Fr. Phillipose and published in 1811. After this period, the British banned Malayanma and most of the books written in Malayanma disappeared; the British never supported or translated Malayanma books into Grantha Malayalam, which they chose to promote in the 19th century. Iravikutti Pilla Por, Vadakkan Pattu, Thacholi Pattu, Kannassa Ramayanam, Ramacharitham Ananthapuri Varnanam are a few of the Malayanma books which have survived. Malayanma, the indigenous Dravidian tongue, its great literary tradition were lost in history. In the 12th century, Kerala was invaded by the Tulu Bana Kings, with an army from Ahichatra on the Indo-Nepalese border. Keralolpathi mentions a Tulu invader called Banapperumal, the brother of Tulu king Kavi Raja Singhan of the Alupa dynasty, who invaded Kerala with a Large Nair army led by Pada Mala Nair.
Banapperumal established his capital at
Climate of India
The Climate of India comprises a wide range of weather conditions across a vast geographic scale and varied topography, making generalisations difficult. Based on the Köppen system, India hosts six major climatic subtypes, ranging from arid desert in the west, alpine tundra and glaciers in the north, humid tropical regions supporting rainforests in the southwest and the island territories. Many regions have starkly different microclimates; the country's meteorological department follows the international standard of four climatological seasons with some local adjustments: winter, summer, a monsoon rainy season, a post-monsoon period. India's geography and geology are climatically pivotal: the Thar Desert in the northwest and the Himalayas in the north work in tandem to effect a culturally and economically important monsoonal regime; as Earth's highest and most massive mountain range, the Himalayas bar the influx of frigid katabatic winds from the icy Tibetan Plateau and northerly Central Asia.
Most of North India is only mildly chilly or cold during winter. Though the Tropic of Cancer—the boundary between the tropics and subtropics—passes through the middle of India, the bulk of the country can be regarded as climatically tropical; as in much of the tropics and other weather patterns in India can be wildly unstable: epochal droughts, floods and other natural disasters are sporadic, but have displaced or ended millions of human lives. There is one scientific opinion which states that in South Asia such climatic events are to change in unpredictability and severity. Ongoing and future vegetative changes and current sea level rises and the attendant inundation of India's low-lying coastal areas are other impacts, current or predicted, that are attributable to global warming. During the Triassic period of some 251–199.6 Ma, the Indian subcontinent was part of a vast supercontinent known as Pangaea. Despite its position within a high-latitude belt at 55–75° S—latitudes now occupied by parts of the Antarctic Peninsula, as opposed to India's current position between 5 and 35° N—India experienced a humid temperate climate with warm and frost-free weather, though with well-defined seasons.
India merged into the southern supercontinent Gondwana, a process beginning some 550–500 Ma. During the Late Paleozoic, Gondwana extended from a point at or near the South Pole to near the equator, where the Indian craton was positioned, resulting in a mild climate favourable to hosting high-biomass ecosystems; this is underscored by India's vast coal reserves—much of it from the late Paleozoic sedimentary sequence—the fourth-largest reserves in the world. During the Mesozoic, the world, including India, was warmer than today. With the coming of the Carboniferous, global cooling stoked extensive glaciation, which spread northwards from South Africa towards India. Tectonic movement by the Indian Plate caused it to pass over a geologic hotspot—the Réunion hotspot—now occupied by the volcanic island of Réunion; this resulted in a massive flood basalt event that laid down the Deccan Traps some 60–68 Ma, at the end of the Cretaceous period. This may have contributed to the global Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, which caused India to experience reduced insolation.
Elevated atmospheric levels of sulphur gases formed aerosols such as sulphur dioxide and sulphuric acid, similar to those found in the atmosphere of Venus. Elevated carbon dioxide emissions contributed to the greenhouse effect, causing warmer weather that lasted long after the atmospheric shroud of dust and aerosols had cleared. Further climatic changes 20 million years ago, long after India had crashed into the Laurasian landmass, were severe enough to cause the extinction of many endemic Indian forms; the formation of the Himalayas resulted in blockage of frigid Central Asian air, preventing it from reaching India. India is home to an extraordinary variety of climatic regions, ranging from tropical in the south to temperate and alpine in the Himalayan north, where elevated regions receive sustained winter snowfall; the nation's climate is influenced by the Himalayas and the Thar Desert. The Himalayas, along with the Hindu Kush mountains in Pakistan, prevent cold Central Asian katabatic winds from blowing in, keeping the bulk of the Indian subcontinent warmer than most locations at the similar latitudes.
The Thar Desert plays a role in attracting moisture-laden southwest summer monsoon winds that, between June and October, provide the majority of India's rainfall. Four major climatic groupings predominate, into which fall seven climatic zones that, as designated by experts, are defined on the basis of such traits as temperature and precipitation. Groupings are assigned codes according to the Köppen climate classification system. A tropical rainy climate governs regions persistent to warm or high temperatures, which do not fall below 18 °C. India hosts two climatic subtypes- tropical monsoon climate, tropical wet and dry climate that fall under this group. 1) The most humid is the tropical wet climate—also known as a tropical monsoon climate—that covers a strip of southwestern lowlands abutting the Malabar Coast, the Western Ghats, southern Assam. India's two island territories and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, are subject to this climate. Characterised by moderate to high year-round te
Roman glass objects have been recovered across the Roman Empire in domestic and funerary contexts. Glass was used for the production of vessels, although mosaic tiles and window glass were produced. Roman glass production developed from Hellenistic technical traditions concentrating on the production of intensely coloured cast glass vessels. However, during the 1st century AD the industry underwent rapid technical growth that saw the introduction of glass blowing and the dominance of colourless or'aqua' glasses. Production of raw glass was undertaken in geographically separate locations to the working of glass into finished vessels, by the end of the 1st century AD large scale manufacturing resulted in the establishment of glass as a available material in the Roman world, one which had technically difficult specialized types of luxury glass, which must have been expensive. Despite the growth of glass working in the Hellenistic World and the growing place of glass in material culture, at the beginning of the 1st century AD there was still no Latin word for it in the Roman World.
However, glass was being produced in Roman contexts using Hellenistic techniques and styles by the late Republican period. The majority of manufacturing techniques were time-consuming, the initial product was a thick-walled vessel which required considerable finishing. This, combined with the cost of importing natron for the production of raw glass, contributed to the limited use of glass and its position as an expensive and high-status material; the glass industry was therefore a minor craft during the Republican period. This was a direct result of the massive growth of the Roman influence at the end of the Republican period, the Pax Romana that followed the decades of civil war, the stabilisation of the state that occurred under Augustus' rule. Still, Roman glasswares were making their way from Western Asia to the Kushan Empire in Afghanistan and India and as far Han Empire of China; the first Roman glass found in China came from an early 1st-century BC tomb at Guangzhou, ostensibly via the South China Sea.
In addition to this a major new technique in glass production had been introduced during the 1st century AD. Glassblowing allowed glass workers to produce vessels with thinner walls, decreasing the amount of glass needed for each vessel. Glass blowing was considerably quicker than other techniques, vessels required less finishing, representing a further saving in time, raw material and equipment. Although earlier techniques dominated during the early Augustan and Julio-Claudian periods, by the middle to late 1st century AD earlier techniques had been abandoned in favour of blowing; as a result of these factors, the cost of production was reduced and glass became available for a wider section of society in a growing variety of forms. By the mid-1st century AD this meant that glass vessels had moved from a valuable, high-status commodity, to a material available: "a drinking cup could be bought for a copper coin"; this growth saw the production of the first glass tesserae for mosaics, the first window glass, as furnace technology improved allowing molten glass to be produced for the first time.
At the same time, the expansion of the empire brought an influx of people and an expansion of cultural influences that resulted in the adoption of eastern decorative styles. The changes that took place in the Roman glass industry during this period can therefore be seen as a result of three primary influences: historical events, technical innovation and contemporary fashions, they are linked to the fashions and technologies developed in the ceramic trade, from which a number of forms and techniques were drawn. Glass making reached its peak at the beginning of the 2nd century AD, with glass objects in domestic contexts of every kind; the primary production techniques of blowing, to a lesser extent casting, remained in use for the rest of the Roman period, with changes in vessel types but little change in technology. From the 2nd century onwards styles became regionalised, evidence indicates that bottles and closed vessels such as unguentaria moved as a by-product of the trade in their contents, many appear to have matched the Roman scale of liquid measurement.
The use of coloured glass as a decorative addition to pale and colourless glasses increased, metal vessels continued to influence the shape of glass vessels. After the conversion of Constantine, glass works began to move more from depicting Pagan religious imagery towards Christian religious imagery; the movement of the capital to Constantinople rejuvenated the Eastern glass industry, the presence of the Roman military in the western provinces did much to prevent any downturn there. By the mid-4th century mould-blowing was in use only sporadically. Roman glass production relied on the application of heat to fuse two primary ingredients: silica and soda. Technical studies of archaeological glasses divide the ingredients of glass as formers, stabilisers, as well as possible opacifiers or colourants. Former: The major component of the glass is silica, which during the Roman period was sand, which contains some alumina and nearly 8% lime. Alumina contents vary, peaking around 3% in glasses from the western Empire, remaining notably lower in glasses from the Middle East.
Flux: This ingredient was used to lower the melting point of the silica to form glass. Analysis of Roman glass has shown that soda
Archaeology, or archeology, is the study of human activity through the recovery and analysis of material culture. The archaeological record consists of artifacts, biofacts or ecofacts and cultural landscapes. Archaeology can be considered a branch of the humanities. In North America archaeology is a sub-field of anthropology, while in Europe it is viewed as either a discipline in its own right or a sub-field of other disciplines. Archaeologists study human prehistory and history, from the development of the first stone tools at Lomekwi in East Africa 3.3 million years ago up until recent decades. Archaeology is distinct from palaeontology, the study of fossil remains, it is important for learning about prehistoric societies, for whom there may be no written records to study. Prehistory includes over 99% of the human past, from the Paleolithic until the advent of literacy in societies across the world. Archaeology has various goals, which range from understanding culture history to reconstructing past lifeways to documenting and explaining changes in human societies through time.
The discipline involves surveying and analysis of data collected to learn more about the past. In broad scope, archaeology relies on cross-disciplinary research, it draws upon anthropology, art history, ethnology, geology, literary history, semiology, textual criticism, information sciences, statistics, paleography, paleontology and paleobotany. Archaeology developed out of antiquarianism in Europe during the 19th century, has since become a discipline practiced across the world. Archaeology has been used by nation-states to create particular visions of the past. Since its early development, various specific sub-disciplines of archaeology have developed, including maritime archaeology, feminist archaeology and archaeoastronomy, numerous different scientific techniques have been developed to aid archaeological investigation. Nonetheless, archaeologists face many problems, such as dealing with pseudoarchaeology, the looting of artifacts, a lack of public interest, opposition to the excavation of human remains.
The science of archaeology grew out of the older multi-disciplinary study known as antiquarianism. Antiquarians studied history with particular attention to ancient artifacts and manuscripts, as well as historical sites. Antiquarianism focused on the empirical evidence that existed for the understanding of the past, encapsulated in the motto of the 18th-century antiquary, Sir Richard Colt Hoare, "We speak from facts not theory". Tentative steps towards the systematization of archaeology as a science took place during the Enlightenment era in Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries. In Europe, philosophical interest in the remains of Greco-Roman civilization and the rediscovery of classical culture began in the late Middle Age. Flavio Biondo, an Italian Renaissance humanist historian, created a systematic guide to the ruins and topography of ancient Rome in the early 15th century, for which he has been called an early founder of archaeology. Antiquarians of the 16th century, including John Leland and William Camden, conducted surveys of the English countryside, drawing and interpreting the monuments that they encountered.
One of the first sites to undergo archaeological excavation was Stonehenge and other megalithic monuments in England. John Aubrey was a pioneer archaeologist who recorded numerous megalithic and other field monuments in southern England, he was ahead of his time in the analysis of his findings. He attempted to chart the chronological stylistic evolution of handwriting, medieval architecture and shield-shapes. Excavations were carried out by the Spanish military engineer Roque Joaquín de Alcubierre in the ancient towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum, both of, covered by ash during the Eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79; these excavations began in 1748 in Pompeii, while in Herculaneum they began in 1738. The discovery of entire towns, complete with utensils and human shapes, as well the unearthing of frescos, had a big impact throughout Europe. However, prior to the development of modern techniques, excavations tended to be haphazard; the father of archaeological excavation was William Cunnington. He undertook excavations in Wiltshire from around 1798.
Cunnington made meticulous recordings of Neolithic and Bronze Age barrows, the terms he used to categorize and describe them are still used by archaeologists today. One of the major achievements of 19th-century archaeology was the development of stratigraphy; the idea of overlapping strata tracing back to successive periods was borrowed from the new geological and paleontological work of scholars like William Smith, James Hutton and Charles Lyell. The application of stratigraphy to archaeology first took place with the excavations of prehistorical and Bronze Age sites. In the third and fourth decades of the 19th-century, archaeologists like Jacques Boucher de Perthes and Christian Jürgensen Thomsen began to put the artifacts they had found in chronological order. A major figure in the development of archaeology into a rigorous science was the army officer and ethnologist, Augustus Pitt Rivers, who began excavations on his land in England in the 1880s, his approach was methodical by the standards of the time, he is regarded as the first scientific archaeologist.
He arranged his artifacts by type or "typologically, within types by date or "chronologically"
Chinese fishing nets
Chinese fishing nets are a type of stationary lift net in India. They are fishing nets. While known as "Chinese fishing nets" in India, the more formal name for such nets is "shore operated lift nets". Huge mechanical contrivances hold out horizontal nets of 20 m or more across; each structure is at least 10 m high and comprises a cantilever with an outstretched net suspended over the sea and large stones suspended from ropes as counterweights at the other end. Each installation is operated by a team of up to six fishermen. While such nets are used throughout coastal southern China and Indochina, in India they are found in the Indian cities of Kochi and Kollam, where they have become a tourist attraction; this way of fishing is unusual in India and unique to the area, as it was introduced by Chinese explorers who landed there in the 14th century. Indeed, one interpretation of the city name Kochi is ‘co-chin', meaning ‘like China.’The system is sufficiently balanced that the weight of a man walking along the main beam is sufficient to cause the net to descend into the sea.
The net is left for a short time just a few minutes, before it is raised by pulling on ropes. The catch is modest: a few fish and crustaceans, which may be sold to passers-by within minutes. Rocks, each 30 cm or so in diameter, are suspended from ropes of different lengths; as the net is raised, some of the rocks one-by-one come to rest on a platform thereby keeping everything in balance. Each installation has a limited operating depth. An individual net cannot be continually operated in tidal waters. Different installations will be operated depending on the state of the tide; the nets may have been introduced by the Chinese explorer Zheng He. The Chinese fishing nets have become a popular tourist attraction, their size and elegant construction is photogenic and the slow rhythm of their operation is quite hypnotic. In addition, catches can be purchased individually and need be taken only a short distance to a street entrepreneur who will cook it. Fishing in India Zheng He and Kochi Short documentary about Chinese fishing nets in Fort Kochi
India known as the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh largest country by area and with more than 1.3 billion people, it is the second most populous country as well as the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives, while its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia; the Indian subcontinent was home to the urban Indus Valley Civilisation of the 3rd millennium BCE. In the following millennium, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism began to be composed. Social stratification, based on caste, emerged in the first millennium BCE, Buddhism and Jainism arose. Early political consolidations took place under the Gupta empires. In the medieval era, Zoroastrianism and Islam arrived, Sikhism emerged, all adding to the region's diverse culture.
Much of the north fell to the Delhi Sultanate. The economy expanded in the 17th century in the Mughal Empire. In the mid-18th century, the subcontinent came under British East India Company rule, in the mid-19th under British Crown rule. A nationalist movement emerged in the late 19th century, which under Mahatma Gandhi, was noted for nonviolent resistance and led to India's independence in 1947. In 2017, the Indian economy was the world's sixth largest by nominal GDP and third largest by purchasing power parity. Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies and is considered a newly industrialised country. However, it continues to face the challenges of poverty, corruption and inadequate public healthcare. A nuclear weapons state and regional power, it has the second largest standing army in the world and ranks fifth in military expenditure among nations. India is a federal republic governed under a parliamentary system and consists of 29 states and 7 union territories.
A pluralistic and multi-ethnic society, it is home to a diversity of wildlife in a variety of protected habitats. The name India is derived from Indus, which originates from the Old Persian word Hindush, equivalent to the Sanskrit word Sindhu, the historical local appellation for the Indus River; the ancient Greeks referred to the Indians as Indoi, which translates as "The people of the Indus". The geographical term Bharat, recognised by the Constitution of India as an official name for the country, is used by many Indian languages in its variations, it is a modernisation of the historical name Bharatavarsha, which traditionally referred to the Indian subcontinent and gained increasing currency from the mid-19th century as a native name for India. Hindustan is a Middle Persian name for India, it was introduced into India by the Mughals and used since then. Its meaning varied, referring to a region that encompassed northern India and Pakistan or India in its entirety; the name may refer to either the northern part of India or the entire country.
The earliest known human remains in South Asia date to about 30,000 years ago. Nearly contemporaneous human rock art sites have been found in many parts of the Indian subcontinent, including at the Bhimbetka rock shelters in Madhya Pradesh. After 6500 BCE, evidence for domestication of food crops and animals, construction of permanent structures, storage of agricultural surplus, appeared in Mehrgarh and other sites in what is now Balochistan; these developed into the Indus Valley Civilisation, the first urban culture in South Asia, which flourished during 2500–1900 BCE in what is now Pakistan and western India. Centred around cities such as Mohenjo-daro, Harappa and Kalibangan, relying on varied forms of subsistence, the civilization engaged robustly in crafts production and wide-ranging trade. During the period 2000–500 BCE, many regions of the subcontinent transitioned from the Chalcolithic cultures to the Iron Age ones; the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed during this period, historians have analysed these to posit a Vedic culture in the Punjab region and the upper Gangetic Plain.
Most historians consider this period to have encompassed several waves of Indo-Aryan migration into the subcontinent from the north-west. The caste system, which created a hierarchy of priests and free peasants, but which excluded indigenous peoples by labeling their occupations impure, arose during this period. On the Deccan Plateau, archaeological evidence from this period suggests the existence of a chiefdom stage of political organisation. In South India, a progression to sedentary life is indicated by the large number of megalithic monuments dating from this period, as well as by nearby traces of agriculture, irrigation tanks, craft traditions. In the late Vedic period, around the 6th century BCE, the small states and chiefdoms of the Ganges Plain and the north-western regions had consolidated into 16 major oligarchies and monarchies that were known as the mahajanapadas; the emerging urbanisation gave rise to non-Vedic religious movements, two of which became independent religions. Jainism came into prominence during the life of Mahavira.
Buddhism, based on the teachings of Gautama Buddha, attracted followers from all social classes excepting the middle