The civilisation was primarily located in modern-day India (Gujarat, Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan provinces) and Pakistan (Sindh, Punjab, and Balochistan provinces).
This civilisation collapsed at the start of the second millennium BCE and was later followed by the Iron Age Vedic Civilisation; the era saw the composition of the Vedas, oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism; and social stratification emerged based on caste.
The Vedic Civilisation extended over much of the Indo-Gangetic plain and witnessed the rise of major polities known as the Mahajanapadas.
Inhabitants of the ancient Indus river valley, the Harappans, developed new techniques in metallurgy and handicraft (carneol products, seal carving), and produced copper, bronze, lead, and tin.
The Mature Indus civilisation flourished from about 2600 to 1900 BCE, marking the beginning of urban civilisation on the subcontinent.
For Pakistan and Bangladesh in focus, see History of Pakistan and History of Bangladesh.
The history of India includes the prehistoric settlements and societies in the Indian subcontinent; the advancement of civilisation from the Indus Valley Civilisation to the eventual blending of the Indo-Aryan culture to form the Vedic Civilisation; the onset of a succession of powerful dynasties and empires for more than three millennia throughout various geographic areas of the subcontinent, including the growth of nomadic Central Asian Muslim dominions during the Medieval period intertwined with Hindu powers; the advent of European traders resulting in the establishment of the British rule; and the subsequent independence movement that led to the Partition of India and the creation of the Republic of India.
The Mesolithic period in the Indian subcontinent was followed by the Neolithic period, when more extensive settlement of the subcontinent occurred after the end of the last Ice Age approximately 12,000 years ago.
The first confirmed semi-permanent settlements appeared 9,000 years ago in the Bhimbetka rock shelters in modern Madhya Pradesh, India.
In one of these kingdoms, Magadha, Gautama Buddha and Mahavira propagated their Shramanic philosophies during the fifth and sixth century BCE.
Most of the subcontinent was conquered by the Maurya Empire during the 4th and 3rd centuries BCE.
Dissatisfaction with Company rule led to the Indian Rebellion of 1857, after which the British provinces of India were directly administered by the British Crown and witnessed a period of prolonged economic stagnation and major famines.