After Indian Independence South India was linguistically divided into the states of Andhra Pradesh , Tamilnadu, Karnataka , Telangana and Kerala. The period of known history of the South India begins from Iron age.

*THE PANDYAS : They were one of the three ancient Tamil dynasties ( Chola and Chera being the other two) who ruled Tamil country from prehistoric times from Korkai to Madurai. ( 400 BCE – 300 CE ) in Sangam Literature, the mention of Pandyas generate a lot of informations.
Kalabhras and Kadungon were ruled out by the emergence of Chola dynasty in the 9th century C.E. and were in constant conflict with them. Pamdayas allied with Sinhalese and the Cheras in harassing the Cholas until they found and opportunity in reviving their fortunes. Sundara Pandyan was notable for his expansion of empire in the Telugu country. Pandyas were repeatedly in conflict with the Pallavas, Hoysalas and finally Muslim invaders from Delhi Sultanate. With the establishment of Madurai Sultanate, the Pandyas became extinct in 14th century C.E.

CHOLA EMPIRE : They were the three main dynasties to rule South India from ancient times. KARIKALA CHOLA ( 1st century C.E. ) was the most famous king during the early years of the dynasty and managed to gain ascendency of the Kalabhras.
VIJAYALAYA CHOLA : revived the Chola dynasty in 850 C.E. by conquering Thanhavur by defeating Ilango Mutharaiyar and making it it’s capital. His son Adiya defeated the Pallava king Aparajita and extended the Chola territories to Tondaimandalam. The centres of Chola kingdom were Kanchi and Thanjavur.
RAJENDRA CHOLA – He completed the conquest of Sri Lanka , invaded Bengal and undertook a great naval campaign that occupied parts of Malaya , Burma and Sumatra.
One of the most powerful rulers of the Chola kingdom was Raja Raja Chola , who ruled from 985 to 1014 C.E. . His army conquered the Navy of the Cheras at Thiruvananthapuram and annexed Anuradhapura and the northern province of Ceylon.

CHERA DYNASTY : The early Cheras ruled over the Malabar coast , Coimbatore, Erode, Namakkal , Karur and Salem districts in South India , which now forms parts of Kerala and Tamilnadu. Trade was the estimated prosperity that adorned the Chera dynasty.

SATVAHANA EMPIRE : It was a royal Indian dynasty based on Amravati in Andhra Pradesh as well as Junnar ( Pune ) and Pratisthan ( Paithan) in Maharashthra . The territory of the empire covered much of India from 300 BCE onward. They are credited for establishing peace in the country , resisting onslaught of foreigners after the decline of Maurtan Empire.

They were one of the greatest kingdoms which ruled South India during 345 – 525 C.E. Their kingdom spanned the present day Karnataka state. Banavasi was their capital. They expanded their territories over Goa, Hanagal. This dynasty was founded by Mayura Sharma c. 345 C.E. They built fine temples in Banavasi, Belgavi, Halsi and Goa. Kadambas were the first rulers to use Kannada as an administrative language. Chalukya dynasty of Badami, The Kadambas ruled as their feudatory from 525 CE for another five hundred years.

The history of the culture of the Bengal maybe traced from the pre- and proto – historic age. This is evident from the discovery of Paleolithic, microlithic, Neolithic and chacolithic tools and implements in different parts of India. Rural economy based on agriculture was the foundation upon which was set up the super structure of Bengali culture. Agriculture along with small industries , constituted the self – sufficiency of the village economy. The extent of landholding determined the social status of the people . The position of poor peasants , the degraded sudras, was reduced to that of serfs. The serfs and the women – folk were deprived of social and religious rights and privileges. The predominance of the village based agrarian economy remained undisturbed. Neither the peasants and artisans in the villages, nor the labourers and small traders living in Calcutta itself , could participate in the cultural progress of 19th century Bengal. The type of education that the English rulers had introduced in Bengal were for the privileged few. The vast mass of illeterate people wallowed in complete ignorance. Vivekananda’s programme of upliftment of the poor and downtrodden and Rabindranath Tagore ‘s experiments in rural reconstruction remain yet to be fulfilled. Tagore efforts for the revival of rural economy by the application of modern science and technology and regeneration of rural culture comprising folk art , dance , music and literature , with somewhat urban sophistication and refinement , indicated thec
trends in the 20th century Bengali culture.
Bengali women commonly wear Saree, often distinctly designed according to local cultural customs. Men wear traditional costumes like dhoti or lungi and punjabi.
The baul tradition us a unique heritage of Bengali folk music , which has also been influenced by regional music traditions. Folk music in West Bengal is often accompanied by ektara, a one stringed instrument. Other folk forms include Kabigaan, Gombhira, Bhawaiya, Kirtans, Gajan festival music. Bengali culture is perceived as enlightenment and excellence of taste in fine arts , humanities and knowledge. On a broader outlook, it can be integrated as behaviour , beliefs, customs, morals , conventions , shared attitudes , social organisations and achievements.
The cultural heritage of Bengalees relates to the Indian subcontinent , Bangladesh, West Bengal , Tripura, where Bengali language is the official and primary language. The Bengali people are the dominant ethnolinguistic group.

India is a home to over a billion people , accommodating incredible cultural diversity between languages , geographic regions , religious traditions and social stratifications. India continues to be one of the most ethnically diverse populations of the world. Dravidian languages commonly spoken include Tamil , Kannada, Telugu and Malayalam. Within these broad language groups, there is vast linguistic diversity accounting for 22 major languages and hundreds of regional or local languages. Most Indians tends to be bilingual or multilingual, speaking an official language along with their regional languages. English is considered to be a subsidiary official language that is often reserved for governmental and commercial purposes. People who do not share a common first or native language will generally communicate in Hindi or English. India is one of the religious countries with a large and active population of Hindus , Muslims , Sikhs , Christians and others. Cuisine and handicrafts vary greatly from different religions to languages , clothing , music and dance. The most popular classical dance form are Kathak, Bharatnatyam, Kathakali, Manipuri. While folk dances like Chau, Rouf, Padayani, Dollu Kunitha, Dandiya, Bihu and Gaur are performed mainly during festivals , weddings , events and harvesting. Traditional clothing in the country varies from region to region , influenced immensely by local culture , geography and climatic conditions. The popular style if dressing includes drapes. The traditional attire for women includes ghagra- choli ( Rajasthan ) , pheran ( Jammu and Kashmir ) , Mekhala ( Assam ) , ghagri with orni ( Uttrakhand) , red bordered Saree with a blouse wearing shakha and pola ( traditional bangles for Bengalees ) from West Bengal etc. The ethnic wear for men are dhoti , kurta, salwar kameez, turban and more. Saree is the most gorgeous and elegant apparel for women to be worn at formal events, traditional functions and religious ceremonies.
Indian culinary culture is diverse and distinctive. In taste and preparations Indian foods are very different from rest of the world. Gujrati, Rajasthani, South Indian , Kashmiri and Bengali cuisines deliberately gives a touch of simplicity and enrichment in our cultural ties. Myriad festivals celebrated all over the country makes us all proud of a great nation. National days like Gandhi Jayanti , Republic Day , Independence Day are celebrated with great enthusiasm and zeal. Festivals like Holi, Diwali , Dussehra, Durga Puja , Ganesh Chaturthi, Laxmi Puja , Eid- ul- Fitr, Chhath puja, Losar, Gangaur unites the people with an emotional integrity and allows everyone to enjoy the festivals with fervour.

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