Two emerging and conflicting countries in the world today are India and Pakistan. It would seem that these two countries that were originally one would have much in common. In fact, the differences are quite clear. From an economic standpoint to the conflict in Kashmir, India and Pakistan are two contrasting countries forged of the same steel. This paper aims to compare and contrast India and Pakistan. Both countries current level of development will be analyzed. The major factors that have helped or hindered economic development in both countries will be discussed. Finally, the level and impact of regional integration on development will be examined.
The subcontinent of India is one steeped in heritage and tradition. Civilization has existed in this area for the last 5,000 years (World fact book: India, 2005). Until only 50 years ago, both India and Pakistan were one country. After the fall of the British Empire and subsequent end of occupation in India in 1947, the two countries became separate entities (World fact book: India, 2005).
The major divider between the countries was and is religion. The CIA website describes that India is made up of a majority of Hindu (80%), while Pakistan is made up of a majority of Muslim (97%) (World fact book: India, 2005). This difference in religion has created regional tensions, most notably the Kashmir conflict. Both countries have skirmished over this contested area; there have been in fact three wars over the last 50 years (World fact book: India, 2005). Not only does a divide of religious and territorial tension separate the countries, the two countries are virtually night and day when it comes to development.
India is the larger of the two countries, with a staggering population of 1 billion (World fact book: India, 2005). This large population helps...