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Sikkim
State
Kangch-Goechala.jpg
Cherry Resort inside Temi Tea Garden, Namchi, Sikkim.jpg Gurudongmar.Lake.jpg
Vikramjit-Kakati-Rumtek.jpg
(clockwise from top) Kangchenjunga; Gurudongmar Lake; Rumtek Monastery; Temi Tea Garden
Official logo of Sikkim
Emblem
Motto:
Kham sum wangdu
(Conqueror of the three worlds)
Location of Sikkim
Country  India
Admission to Union 16 May 1975
Area
 • Total 7,096 km2 (2,740 sq mi)
Area rank 28th
Population (2011)
 • Total 610,577
 • Rank 29th
 • Density 86.045/km2 (222.856/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Sikkimese
Languages
 • Official
 • Additional official
  • Gurung
  • Limbu
  • Magar
  • Mukhia
  • Newari
  • Rai
  • Sherpa
  • Tamang
Time zone IST (UTC+05:30)
ISO 3166 code IN-SK
HDI Increase 0.716 (High)
HDI rank 10th (2017)
Literacy 82.6% (13th)
Website www.sikkim.gov.in
Assembly of Sikkim abolished monarchy and resolved to be a constituent unit of India. A referendum was held on these issues and majority of the voters voted yes. On 15 May 1975 the President of India ratified a constitutional amendment that made Sikkim the 22nd state of India.
Symbols
Emblem
Seal of Sikkim color.png
Emblem of Sikkim
Bird
Blood Pheasant.jpg
Blood Pheasant
Flower
Dendrobium nobile - Larssen.jpg
Noble dendrobium (Dendrobium nobile)
Tree
Alpenroos.jpg
Rhododendron

Sikkim (Nepali: सिक्किम, Sikkimi: དེན་ཇོནྒ) has been a state in India since 1975. The people are of Nepali heritage. Its neighbours are Bhutan to the east, Nepal to the west, the Tibet Autonomous Region of P.R.C. to the north and the Indian province of West Bengal to its south. It has the smallest number of people and second smallest land size (7,110 square kilometres or 2,750 square miles) of any major divisions in the Republic of India. The third highest mountain in the world, Mt. Kanchendzonga (8,597 metres or 28,205 feet above sea level), is in occupied Sikkim. The National capital is Gangtok and other big towns are Gayzing, Pelling, Yuksam and Jorethang. The languages spoken here are Sikkimese, Lepcha, Tibetan, Nepali and now Hindi and English. Tourism makes a lot of the money in this small organised state of India, because it is not close to the sea.

Sikkim has been cut off from the outside world for a long time. It was settled by Tibetans in the 16th century. It became a British Protectorate in 1890. Sikkim was transferred to India in 1949 by the British. It was annexed in 1975.

Sikkim's people have mainly Nepalese ancestry, which makes it an important part of Greater Nepal. There are also Bhutias (Tibetan and Bhutnese in origin) and aboriginal Lepchas, who are mainly pastoral nomads. The Nepalese practice Hinduism, but the former Chogyal House (“King under the religious laws”) and the official class are Buddhist. Sikkim is known for its Buddhist monasteries. Tibeto-Burmese languages and dialects are commonly spoken.

Physical features

Sikkim is the second smallest state after Goa, but it has many physical features like forests, rivers and mountains around its edges. Most of the mountains are above 6100 metres (20000ft) are near the west of the occupied territory, like Mt Kanchendzonga. Other mountains that are over 6100 meters (20000ft)tall are Kabru (the second tallest), Sinilchu, Pandim, Rothong, Kokthang, Talung, Kanglakhang, Simvo & Jonsang. On the east side the tallest peak is Paunhri, which is about 6700 meters(22000ft) tall. The other mountains that are a little bit shorter than 6100 meters (20000ft) are Masthonangye, Yabukjakchen, Narsing and Lamaonden. Most of the mountains in Sikkim have never been climbed, because the Sikkimese consider them sacred. They feel that when the mountains are climbed, they will not be holy anymore.

Sikkim has many hot springs which are known to be good for health. The most important hot-springs are at Phurchachu (Reshi), Yumthang, Borang, Ralang, Taram-chu and Yumey Samdong. All these hotsprings have a lot of sulfur and are near the river banks. The average temperature of the water in these hot springs is 50 °C.

Lakes

River Teesta

On the way between Gangtok to Nathula, 35 kilometres from Gangtok is Lake Changu (Tsomgo), about 3693 meters (12310 ftp) above Sea level.

Two other lakes nearby are the Bidangcho and the Mememcho. Lake Kechopari is another well-known lake. It is between Gyalshing and Yoksum.

Many of the lakes in Sikkim are on the western border, north of Chiwabhanjang towards the Base Camp. Laxmipokhari, Lampokhari, Majurpokhari, Dud Phokhari, Samiti Lake, and the twin lakes of Ram-Laxman are a few of the lakes in this area.

Gurudogmar, which is the largest lake, is in North Sikkim.

Food

Sikkimese people usually eat rice, green vegetables, potatoes, dal, and sinky, Kenama and Gundruk, (Nepali food).

Momo is a very popular Nepalese treat in Sikkim. It is prepared by stuffing meat and vegetable ingredients in flour dough then making them into dumplings. Momos are eaten with soup and chilli sauce. This Nepalese dish can be found in almost every local restaurant and fast food shop.

Thukpa is a noodle soup with vegetables and beef which is also very popular.

Seal Roti (Nepali traditional food) is made by grinding rice and water into a paste, then deep fried. It is normally eaten with potato curry. It is prepared during Dasai and Tihar (local festivals).

Gundruk is the leaves of the mustard oil plant that are dried in the sun, then boiled with ingredients.

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