Bangladesh, officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh, is a country in South Asia. It is the eighth-most populous country in the world, with a population exceeding 163 million people, in an area of 148,560 square kilometres, making it one of the most densely populated countries in the world. Bangladesh shares land borders with India to the west, north, and east, Myanmar to the southeast, and the Bay of Bengal to the south. It is narrowly separated from Nepal and Bhutan by the Siliguri Corridor, and from China by the Indian state of Sikkim in the north, respectively. Dhaka, the capital and largest city, is the nation's economic, political, and cultural hub. Chittagong, the largest seaport, is the second-largest city.
Bangladesh forms the larger and eastern part of the Bengal region. According to the ancient Indian texts, Rāmāyaṇa and Mahābhārata, the Vanga Kingdom, one of the namesakes of the Bengal region, was a strong naval power. In the ancient and classical periods of the Indian subcontinent, the territory was home to many principalities, including the Pundra, Gangaridai, Gauda, Samatata, and Harikela. It was also a Mauryan province under the reign of Ashoka.