Evidence of Neolithic culture has been found throughout the modern states Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka that represent South Asia.
In modern-day northeastern Afghanistan, in Pakistan and northwestern India a sophisticated Bronze Age cultural tradition emerged, that after only a few centuries fully flourished in urban centers. Due to the high quality of its arts, crafts, metallurgy and buildings, the accomplishments in urban planning, governance, trade and technology etc. it has been classified as one of the principal Cradles of civilization. Referred to as the Indus Valley Civilization. It thrived for almost 2.000 years until the onset of the Vedic period.
the great significance of the Vedic texts for South Asian culture, their impact on family, societal organisation, religion, morale, literature etc. has never been contested. The Indus Valley Civilisation on the other hand has only come to light by means of 20th century archaeology. Scholars, who employ several periodization models argue over whether South Asian tradition is consciously committed to the Harappan culture.
Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism originate in South Asia. These arguably represent the furthest reaching, most profound and permanent South Asian ideas on other cultural spheres. After a long and complex history of cosmological and religious development, adoption and decline, the Hindu-synthesis and the late but thorough introduction of Islam about 80% of modern day Indians and Nepalis identify as Hindus. In Sri Lanka and Bhutan most people adhere to various forms of Buddhism. Islam is the predominant religion in Afghanistan, the Maldives, Pakistan and Bangladesh.