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India has a long, rich and complex history with only the Mesopotamian civilizations and China rivaling its age. The Indus Valley was home to the region's first highly civilized country. India sat on the crossroads of trade routes, especially the Silk Road; allowing the country to prosper. Though over centuries, India has been fought over by different peoples for the land, influencing its history, peoples and culture. Four major world religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism were born from there. The introduction of Zoroastrianism, Christianity, and Islam arrived since 1st Century AD caused demographic and geopolitical changes to the land. Since the early modern era Europeans managed to contact the country by sea, allowing the opening of trade between the two regions. Eventually, Britain managed to seize control of the subcontinent, though during the First International War, a French-supported revolution deposed the British colonial government and allowed independence. During the Cold War, it sided with the Russo-American side against France. An attempted Communist Revolution during the 1970's shook the monarchy to the core, causing its deposition and allowing a republic. Since the 1980's, India faced religious challenges from Islamic and Sikh terrorists, which still play a major role in the country.
The country's economy is the world's eighth largest by nominal GDP and fifth largest by purchasing power parity. Since its independence, India took major steps to rebuild and expand its economy, which were proven very fruitful. By the early 20th Century, it had one of the world's modern economies, though the Great Depression greatly shattered it. The leadership of Akbar II helped build up infrastructure to decrease unemployment, which allowed the improving of the country's economic structure. Despite being well-off, some regions still are behind the country with challenges such as poverty, illiteracy, corruption, inadequate health care, and high crime rates.