Every Indian knows about the greatness of Mahatma Gandhi and the winning stats of the Indian Cricket team. However, very few keep a tab of Kabaddi team and know who Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh is. India is a country known for more bad than good. Known for poverty, crime andcorruption among other things, India has slowly become more of a “must avoid” rather than a “must visit” country over the years. But it is not all bad in the 7th largest and 2nd most populated country in the world. Here are some not-so-known facts about our country that will raise your eyebrows in surprise.

1. Ravinder Kaushik

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Ravinder Kaushik was former RAW agent who was sent to Pakistan for 8 years. However, he was caught by Pakistan’s Intelligence Agency. It is said that Indian intelligence agencies were responsible for Kaushik’s capture as they did not maintain proper cut offs which are normally exercised by intelligence agencies. Kaushik was given life term by Pakistan Supreme Court and he eventually died due to Pulmonary Tuberculosis in jail. Salman Khan’s ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ was roughly based on Kaushik’s life.

2. Bhuvan

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No, we aren’t talking about Aamir Khan from the blockbuster hit Lagaan; we are talking about India’s answer to Google Maps. Did you know that ISRO’s Bhuvan has more than a million satellite images for more than 300 cities? It also features images in 3D and also has some interesting info-graphics on Indian geology.

3. Indian National Kabaddi Team

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Did you know that both Indian men and women Kabaddi teams have won all the Kabaddi world cups till date. Why would we know? We only care about cricket.

4. Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh

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Not many know about Raja Mahendra Pratap Singh, who was a freedom fighter, journalist, writer, and Marxist revolutionary social reformist of India. A Jat prince by birth, he relentlessly preached the values of pluralism, tolerance, liberalism and secularism. Raja even founded a new religion called Prem Dharam, a religion that only recognises love.  He was nominated for Nobel prize and has a postage stamp on him.  

5. The Country Is Very Young

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It is a fact that India is a very young and maturing country. In fact, in a population of over 1.2 billion, more than 50% are aged 25 years or less. On top of that two thirds of the nation is under 35 years of age. This means that slowly but surely the country is developing with greater strength in youth. Their ideas and decisions is what is changing the way people look at India today. Very rarely would foreign investors think of India as a haven to do business but it is all changing thanks to the youth.

6. Barely Anyone Pays Tax

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This might not sound like a good thing and it probably is not but the reason behind this should be understood before putting it down to “corruption”. India is a country that basically runs on its farming and cultivation and we all know that agriculture is exempt from taxation. Since more than 50% of Indians live in and around rural areas, their sole occupation is farming and agriculture. This means they do not have to pay tax. Another large area where taxation is extremely hard to practice is in India’s manual labor. It is very unorganized and this makes it difficult to keep a track of employees and their earnings.

7. Horn Please

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You can only imagine what the traffic scene is in a country that is the second most populous country in the world. Traffic jams are a regular in the country on every road, street and by-lane. Add that to the constant honking and you have yourself a sure shot migraine in a matter of minutes. India actually promotes honking as you will see behind all trucks and lorries. The words “Honk OK Please” are painted on so that vehicles overtaking from behind know they have to honk to alert the driver in front. Sadly, the drivers in India take that as a sign to keep their fingers on the horn continuously. Well, at least we know that there would be fewer accidents caused by overtaking.