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Nepal

Country of Nepal Flag

Capital: Kathmandu

Population: 29,890,686

Brief History of Nepal:

Nepal is known as a land steeped with religion. In the 6th century BC, small kingdoms started to emerge in southern Nepal. One of these was the Shakya kingdom. A prince of the Shakya kingdom named Siddharta Gautama rose to power, but later renounced his status as prince. He went to lead a religious and life of self-denial. He became known as the Buddha, which means enlightened one, and started the Buddhist religion.

Later, Nepal would become part of the Mauryan Empire of India followed by the Gupta Empire.

In the 18th century, Prithvi Narayan united the country from his land of Gorkha. For some time the land was called the Gorkha Kingdom. In 1846 the Rana regime gained power. They isolated Nepal from the outside world for some years.

In 1996, Maoist extremists started a revolution against the monarchy. There was a 10 year long civil war. In 2008 the monarchy was abolished, but the country was left in a state of flux as different parties in the government have not been able to come to an agreement on how to govern.



Country of Nepal Map

The Geography of Nepal

Total Size: 147,181 square km

Size Comparison: slightly larger than Arkansas

Geographical Coordinates: 28 00 N, 84 00 E

World Region or Continent: Asia

General Terrain: Tarai or flat river plain of the Ganges in south, central hill region, rugged Himalayas in north

Geographical Low Point: Kanchan Kalan 70 m

Geographical High Point: Mount Everest 8,850 m

Climate: varies from cool summers and severe winters in north to subtropical summers and mild winters in south

Major cities: KATHMANDU (capital) 990,000 (2009), Pokhara, Lalitpur

The People of Nepal

Type of Government: parliamentary democracy and constitutional monarchy

Languages Spoken: Nepali 47.8%, Maithali 12.1%, Bhojpuri 7.4%, Tharu (Dagaura/Rana) 5.8%, Tamang 5.1%, Newar 3.6%, Magar 3.3%, Awadhi 2.4%, other 10%, unspecified 2.5% (2001 census)

Independence: 1768 (unified by Prithvi Narayan Shah)

National Holiday: Birthday of King GYANENDRA, 7 July (1946)

Nationality: Nepalese (singular and plural)

Religions: Hindu 80.6%, Buddhist 10.7%, Muslim 4.2%, Kirant 3.6%, other 0.9% (2001 census)

National Symbol: rhododendron blossom

National Anthem or Song: Sayaun Thunga Phool Ka (Hundreds of Flowers)

Economy of Nepal

Major Industries: tourism, carpet, textile; small rice, jute, sugar, and oilseed mills; cigarettes, cement and brick production

Agricultural Products: rice, corn, wheat, sugarcane, root crops; milk, water buffalo meat

Natural Resources: quartz, water, timber, hydropower, scenic beauty, small deposits of lignite, copper, cobalt, iron ore

Major Exports: carpets, clothing, leather goods, jute goods, grain

Major Imports: gold, machinery and equipment, petroleum products, fertilizer

Currency: Nepalese rupee (NPR)

National GDP: $38,080,000,000




** Source for population (2012 est.) and GDP (2011 est.) is CIA World Factbook.

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