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Andaman and Nicobar Islands

The Nicobar Islands are an archipelagic island chain in the eastern Indian Ocean.

About Andaman and Nicobar Islands

The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are a group of islands in the Bay of Bengal and a Union Territory of India.

The territory is located geographically 150 km (93 mi) north of Aceh in Indonesia and separated from Thailand and Burma by the Andaman Sea. It comprises two island groups, the Andaman Islands and the Nicobar Islands, separated by the 10° N parallel, with the Andamans to the north of this latitude, and the Nicobars to the south. The Andaman Sea lies to the east and the Bay of Bengal to the west.

The territory's capital is the Andamanese town of Port Blair. The territory's population as per the most recent (2011) Census of India was 379,944. Added together, the total land area of the territory is approximately 6,496 km2 (2,508 sq mi).

History
The Andaman and Nicobar islands have been inhabited for several thousand years, at the very least. The earliest archaeological evidence yet documented goes back some 2,200 years; however, the indications from genetic, cultural and isolation studies point to habitation going back 30,000 to 60,000 years, well into the Middle Paleolithic.

In the Andaman Islands, the various Andamanese people maintained their separated existence through the vast majority of this time, diversifying into distinct linguistic, cultural and territorial groups.

In total, these people numbered somewhere around 7,000 at the time of these first encounters. As the numbers of settlers from the mainland increased (at first mostly prisoners and involuntary indentured labourers, later purposely recruited farmers), these indigenous people lost territory and numbers in the face of punitive expeditions by British troops, land encroachment and the effects of various epidemic diseases. The Jangil and most of the Great Andamanese groups soon became extinct; presently there remain only approximately 400–450 indigenous Andamanese, the Jarawa and Sentinelese in particular maintaining a steadfast independence and refusing most attempts at contact.

Geography
There are 572 islands in the territory having an area of 8,249 km2 (3,185 sq mi). Of these, only 38 are permanently inhabited. The islands extends from 6° to 14° North latitudes and from 92° to 94° East longitudes. The Andamans are separated from the Nicobar group by a channel (the Ten Degree Channel) some 150 km (93 mi) wide. The highest point is located in North Andaman Island (Saddle Peak at 732 m (2,402 ft)). The Andaman group has 325 islands which cover an area of 6,408 km2 (2,474 sq mi) while the Nicobar group has only 24 islands with an area of 1,841 km2 (711 sq mi).

The northernmost point of the Andaman and Nicobars group is 901 km (560 mi) away from the mouth of the Hooghly River and 190 km (120 mi) from Burma. The southernmost island, Great Nicobar's southernmost point, called Indira Point, lies only 150 km (93 mi) from Sumatra in Indonesia. The capital of the union territory, Port Blair, is located 1,255 km (780 mi) from Kolkata, 1,200 km (750 mi) from Visakhapatnam and 1,190 km (740 mi) from Chennai.

States of India

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