GIST of India Year Book 2024


Short Notes or Revision Notes 

Important concepts

  • Finance Commission:
    • Established by the President of India (Article 280)
    • Recommends distribution of tax revenue between center and states
    • Addresses imbalances between tax powers and expenditure responsibilities
    • Works towards equalization of public services across states
  • World Heritage Sites:
    • Cultural or natural sites of outstanding universal value
    • Important across countries and generations
  • Anand Karaj: Sikh marriage ceremony meaning “Blissful Union”
  • Supreme Court Jurisdiction:
    • Original jurisdiction (exclusive):
      • Disputes between government of India and states
      • Between two or more states
    • Appellate jurisdiction: Appeals from High Courts involving substantial questions of law regarding the Constitution (civil and criminal cases)
    • Advisory jurisdiction: Advice provided to the President on specific referrals (Article 143)
  • Directive Principles of State Policy: Guidelines in constitutions for promoting welfare, social justice, and economic development
  • Phytogeographical region: Area with uniform climate and distinct vegetation type


Chapter-1 : The Land & People

A Land of Rich History and Diversity: India

  • One of the oldest and greatest civilizations in the world.
  • Area: 3.29 million square kilometers.
  • Seventh-largest country in the world by land area.
  • Second-largest country by population.
  • Bordered by the Great Himalayas, Indian Ocean, Bay of Bengal, and Arabian Sea.
  • Six geographic zones: North, South, East, West, Central, Northeast.
  • 28 states and 8 union territories.

Diverse Physical Features of India

  • India’s landscape is incredibly diverse, with four main regions:
  • The Himalayas: Towering peaks and fertile valleys form India’s northern boundary. This majestic mountain range resulted from the collision of the Indian and Eurasian plates millions of years ago.
  • The Indo-Gangetic Plains: These fertile plains, formed by the rivers Ganges and Indus, are among the most densely populated areas in the world.
  • The Thar Desert: This desert region, located in northwest India, is divided into the “great desert” and the “little desert.”
  • The Deccan Peninsula: This southern region is marked by plateaus, hills, and coastal plains.

Geological Formation

  • Himalayas:Formed by the collision of the Indian and Eurasian plates.
  • Peninsula:Composed of ancient rock formations dating back billions of years, along with volcanic activity and sedimentary deposits.

River Systems

  • Four Groups:
    • Himalayan rivers (e.g., Ganges, Indus) – originate from snow and glaciers, with continuous flow and swelling during monsoons.
    • Deccan rivers (e.g., Godavari, Krishna) – rainfed and fluctuate in volume.
    • Coastal rivers – shorter with limited catchment areas.
    • Inland drainage basin rivers (e.g., Luni River) – few and far between.


  • Influenced by:Oceans, Himalayas, Thar Desert
  • Four Seasons:Winter, pre-monsoon/summer, southwest monsoon, post-monsoon/northeast monsoon
  • Monsoon:Brings heavy rainfall from June to September, crucial for agriculture and hydrology.


  • North Indian Ocean:Prone to cyclones, especially during the post-monsoon and pre-monsoon seasons.
  • Impact:Large-scale destruction upon landfall.

India’s Rich Tapestry: Flora, Fauna, and Demographics

  • Flora:
    • Diverse plant life due to varied climate and geography.
    • 11 phytogeographical zones with unique vegetation.
  • Fauna:
    • High biodiversity with over 2,800 protected species.
    • Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) studies animal life.
    • Significant contributor to global fauna diversity.
  • Demographics:
    • Population over 1.2 billion and projected to grow.
    • Challenges: population density, sex ratio, literacy, migration.
    • Kerala – highest literacy rate, Bihar – lowest.
    • Migration driven by socio-economic factors.
    • Fertility, mortality, and growth rates closely monitored.
  • Diversity Defines India: Geographical, geological, climatic, and demographic factors create a unique nation with both challenges and opportunities for development.

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