_____ _____ India

Global Sourcebook for International Data Management

                                         by Graham Rhind



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For supplementary information, see links to post office home pages here External, to postal code pages here External and to other personal name and addressing issues pages here External.

Table of Contents

India - Country information


Local short name form

Official name





International telephone access code


ISO 3166 country codes

Car nationality plate code


Internet country code


GRC Country Code


India - Number format

   Note: This section last updated 28th November 2020

(where . indicates the decimal separator and , the thousands separator)

Note that the Indian numbering system is used, whereby digits are written grouped in twos apart from the final three before the decimal point. Thus, a lakh (one hundred thousand) is written 1,00,000.00 and a crore (ten million) is written 1,00,00,000.00.

India - Date and time formats


   Note: This section last updated 30th April 2021

For religious purposes, the date is written:

   yyyy mm dd

This format is also used for south Indian languages, such as Tamil.

Northern Indian languages, such as Hindi, use the format:

   dd mm yyyy

This is also the usual written format:


Both the 12- and 24-hour time notations are used.


In Assamese a full stop is used:


India - Languages


India has 407 languages. 16 of these are national languages. These are: Assamese External (14 604 000 speakers in Assam, Meghalaya and Arunchal Predesh), written in Bengali script; Bengali External (67 200 000 speakers in West Bengal and neighbouring states, written in Bengali script); English External; Gujarati External (43 312 000 speakers in Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh), written in Gujarati script; Hindi External (180 000 000 speakers throughout northern India), written in Devanagari script; Kannada External (33 663 000 speakers in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra), written in Kannada script; Kashmiri External (4 161 000 speakers in Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and Kashmir Valley), written in a Persian-based script; Malayalam External (33 667 000 speakers in Karala, Laccadive Islands and neighbouring states), written in Mayalalam script; Maldivian External (5 035 speakers on Minicoy Island in the Laccadive Islands), written in Tana script; Marathi External (64 783 000 speakers in Maharachtra and neighbouring states), written in Devanagari script; Oriya External (30 158 000 speakers in Orissa, Bihar, West Bengal, Assam and Andhra Pradesh), written in Oriya script; Panjabi External (25 690 000 speakers in Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir; Sindhi External (2 678 000 speakers in Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Tamil Nahu and Uttar Pradesh), written in Arabic and Gurumukhi scripts; Tamil External (58 597 000 speakers in Tamil Nadu and neighbouring states), written in Tamil script; Telugu External (66 318 000 speakers in Andhra Pradesh and neighbouring states), written in Telugu script; Urdu External (45 733 000 speakers in Jammu & Kashmir and by Muslims spread throughout India), written in Arabic script.

India - For the attention of


   Note: This section last updated 26th June 2019

The abbreviations S/O (son of), D/O (daughter of), H/O (husband of) and W/O (wife of) may be found with personal names in the address block.

India - Personal naming conventions


Many of India’s ethnic and religious groups have different personal naming conventions, and these require some recognition and understanding to use them correctly. The naming conventions used by Muslims is described in the chapter Muslim personal names - a guide. Indian Muslims usually do not have family names.


Name order is given name followed by family name. As the family name may denote caste, some people drop their family name and use the middle name instead. Women typically take their husband’s family name. Children typically take their fathers’ surname. In Gujarati women may take their husbands’ first given name and surname upon marriage.

Tamil Hindus

Tamils have very long names which may be found in abbreviated form. This makes matching between names rather difficult. For example,

   Subramaniam Damodara Pakirisamy

may also be found written

   Mr S.D.P. Samy

Each person may elect to shorten their names in different ways. For example:

   Gnaguru s/o Thamboo Mylvaganam
   M.G. Guru
   Kanapathi Pillai Nirumdan
   K.P. Niru
   Mangalam Rajahram

and so on. The use of the shortened version is quite acceptable. Females do not have to take their husband’s name upon marriage, though she may choose to do so, and may choose which name or names to take.


Gender is easily determined from Sikh names. Every male has the name Singh (meaning “lion”) following his given name in this way:

   Bhai Ranjit Singh

Bhaimeans “brother” and Ranjit is the given name. Sardar may be used in place of Bhai.

Females have Kaur (meaning “princess”) after their given name, which may then be followed by a family name in this way:

   Ranjit Kaur Dhillon

She would be addressed as:

   Bibi Ranjit Kaur

where Bibi means “sister”. Sardarni may be used in place of Kaur.

The suffixes Singh and Kaur are given after baptism. Before that, an alternative “family name” exists. Some people retain their family name and add Singh or Kaur as middle names.

Given these naming conventions, a lot of people have the same names, and this makes database matching and de-duplication a major headache. The Sikhs themselves sometimes add a third name, for example that of the settlement from which they come, to distinguish themselves from others, for example:

   Jarnail Singh Calcutta

Equally, each person in a household is likely to have a different name, making householding nigh-on impossible.

The given names themselves are used by both genders without distinction.

   Tables of names can be acquired: given names External, surnames/family names External, family name prefixes External, forms of address External, job titles External

India - Company legal forms


These company types make be found in India:

   Family Owned Business
   Hindu Undivided Family (HUF)
   Private Limited Company (Pvt. Ltd)
   Public Limited Company (PMC)
   Public Sector Enterprise (PSE)
   Public Sector Unit (PSU)
   Sole Proprietorship
   Unlimited Company
   Comprehensive tables of these strings can be acquired – see http:www.grcdi.nl/addresses.htm External

India - Example address format


   Note: This section last updated 22nd July 2020


The postal code may also often be found written underneath the postal town name:


and the address may contain multiple levels of administrative division names:

   8th Block 

Addresses may often contain many descriptive elements.

Addresses written in a non-native language will be written in English.

The address may contain the state External or union territory name. The common abbreviations for these administrative districts are (in this list, the union territories are indicated with an asterisk):

Andaman & Nicobar External * AN
Andhra Pradesh External AP
Arunāchal Pradesh External AR
Assam External AS
Bihār External BR
Chandīgarh External * CHD
Chhattīgarh External  
Dādra & Nagar Haveli & Damān & Diu External *  
Delhi External * DEL
Goa External GOA
Gujarāt External GUJ
Haryāna External HR
Himāchal Pradesh External HP
Jammu & Kashmīr External JK
Jharkhand External  
Karnātaka External KRN
Kerala External KER
Lakshadweep External * LKP
Madhya Pradesh External MP
Mahārāshtra External MAH
Manipur External MNP
Meghālaya External MEG
Mizoram External MIZ
Nāgāland External NLD
Orissa External OR
Pondicherry External * PDY
Punjab External PU
Rājasthān External RAJ
Sikkim External SKM
Tamil Nādu External TN
Telangana External  
Tripura External TRP
Uttar Pradesh External UP
Uttarakhand External (previously Uttaranchal)  
West Bengal External WB
   A table containing information about the relevant position of elements within address blocks can be acquired External

Thoroughfare types


   Note: This section last updated 24th January 2019

Common local-language strings found in addresses are:

Local-language form English
Bazar Bazaar
Bhavan House, building
Marg Street
Nagar Settlement
Salai/Calai/சாலை Road
Vazhi/வழி Way

Comprehensive tables of these strings can be acquired – see http:www.grcdi.nl/addresses.htm External

India - Post office box


Post office box deliveries may be to P.O. Box or to Post Bag.

India - Postal codes


   Note: This section last updated 1st March 2020

Indian postal codes (PIN codes, introduced in 1972) consist of a block of 6 digits. There are estimated to be over 19100 PIN codes. The first digit cannot be 0. The first two indicate the state, the third the sorting centre and the last three a large town, a group of post offices or a delivery office. Postal codes are sometimes found written in the format

   NNN[ ]NNN 



The following table indicates the fist digits of the postal codes per state or union territory. It should be noted that there may be overlaps in postal areas between states which are not shown here:

Postal code State or Union Territory
11 Delhi
12-13 Haryāna
140-143; 144001-144028; 1441-1449; 145-159 Punjab
144031-144040; 16 Chandigarh
17 Himāchal Pradesh
18-19 Shared between Jammu & Kashmīr and Ladakh
20-245, 264-28 Uttar Pradesh
246-263 Uttarakhand
30-34 Rājasthān
36-39 (excluding those PIN codes commencing 39 listed below) Gujarāt
396210; 396220; 396235 Dādra & Nagar Haveli & Damān & Diu
400-402; 404-409; 41-44 Mahārāshtra
403 Goa
45-48 Madhya Pradesh
49 Chhattisgarh
50-535 Shared between Andhra Pradesh and Telangana
536 Shared between Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nādu
537-599 Karnātaka
6011-6013; 602-604; 605 (shared with Pondicherry); 606; 607001-607004; 60705-6079; 608-609; 61-66 Tamil Nādu
605 Puducherry
601016; 607008; 670-672; 674-679, 68-69; 777 Kerala
673 Lakshadweep
70-736; 738-743; 745-749 West Bengal
737; 750 Sikkim
744 Andaman and Nicobar Islands
751-770 Orissa
78 Assam
790-792 Arunāchal Pradesh
793-794 Meghālaya
795 Manipur
796 Mizoram
797-798 Nāgāland
799 Tripura
80-813; 834-85 Bihār
814-835 Jharkhand

Postal codes commencing 9 are military addresses.

   This regions/postal code data can be acquired as a data file External
   Metadata containing postal code formatting rules, exceptions and regular expressions can be acquired External

India - Postal code format graphic


India - Postal code format

India - Postal code specifics

India - Postal code regular expression


India - Postal code level of coverage


Place names in India


   Note: This section last updated 22nd July 2016

Indian cities are increasingly renaming themselves in local-language equivalents and dropping the English names used up to now.

Refer to Exonyms in India for full lists of place names in India in other languages.

   Alternate place name forms/postal code tables can be acquired at http:www.grcdi.nl/settlements.htm External
   Other language place name data can be acquired at http://www.grcdi.nl/otherlanguageplace.htm External

India - Administrative districts


   Note: This section last updated  22nd July 2020

India has 28 states and 8 union territories, used in addresses. They are listed above in the “Example address format” section. In the year 2000, three new states were established: Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Uttaranchal. Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh were created from parts of Bihar and Orissa; Uttaranchal was created from north Uttar Pradesh. Telangana was created from part of Andhra Pradesh on 2nd June 2014. Ladakh was split from Jammu and Kashmir on 1st November 2019. Dadra and Nagar Haveli merged with Daman and Diu on 26th January 2020.

Administrative districts graphic


Telephone numbers in India


Indian telephone numbers have a full length of 10 digits when called from abroad, with area codes of 2-4 digits and subscriber numbers of 6-8 digits. Mobile number area codes commence with 9.

   Tables of telephone number information/formats can be acquired – see http://www.grcdi.nl/telephone.htm External 


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