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 religion & language of India


India probably has the most religious diversity in any country. It’s the birthplace of Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism. It’s among the few places to have a resident Zoroastrian population. The Syrian Christian Church is well established in Kerala; the Basilica of Bom Jesus in Goa, old churches in Calcutta and Delhi, synagogues in Kerala, temples from the tiny to the tremendous, ‘stupas’, ‘gompas’ and the Bodhi tree, the Ajmer Sharif and Kaliya Sharif in Bombay, all reflect the amazing multiplicity of religious practice in India. Tribal people in the northeast, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat practice forms of nature worship.


The national language of India is Hindi, which in one form or another is spoken all over the north. In the Deccan (south India), the languages are completely different. The states were formed on the basis of language so each has its own. On the whole though, dialects, accents, idioms and linguistic flourishes change every few miles. There are 18 official languages but over a thousand recognised dialects. English is widely spoken.


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