India/Data sources

From OpenStreetMap Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The following open data sources are available or have been used to map India.

Government Data Sources

Online imagery

It is permissible to use imagery from Landsat, Yahoo Maps and from Bing Maps, ESRI,MAXAR and trace over these. Note that some of these are sometimes misaligned, and all mapping in a region may appear to be offset by a set distance. Checks should always be made using GPS or a known verified reference point.

It is not OK to trace from Google Maps, or to use derivatives of it, such as Wikimapia.

Landsat, Bing Maps


The tiles for these are misplaced in some areas, sometimes by a few hundred metres. When in doubt check with GPS traces and adjust the tile location accordingly.

AMS Maps

  • US Army Map Service (1955)[1]- Good for geographical areas and names. These maps are old (prepared in the 1950's) but provide some excellent reference to roads in the rural area where mapping is scarcely done. Together with satellite imagery, it can be used effectively to draw out some secondary and rural roads.

Other US military maps can be found in the public domain at [2], which cover regions around the borders of the country. These are more recent (1980's onward) and more detailed than the AMS maps above.

Other maps

  • We have permission to use these maps of Goa for tracing into OpenStreetMap (see email between Etienne and John the Map below). They are unrectified. Mikel has downloaded the complete set, in case the site goes offline.

Hi Etienne, Sorry for the delay in replying. I agree but would remind you that this applies only to the maps of Goa, its towns and beaches. This is because I am no longer interested in publishing these maps in hard copy. The other maps are still in print and would require separate negociation. Hope this clarifies and helps. Have fun John the Map

John Thank you for you positive reply.

What' I'd like to do initially is take your map of Panaji ( ), overlay our current map of the same place ( ) and then from that add to our map everything that is missing.

If it works well with Panaji then I'd like to repeat the process for the other town plans that you've drawn.

I don't think I will attempt the same for the land maps as you yourself say that they have been derived from other maps. The culture of OpenStreetMap is to err on the side of caution with respect to copyright and so I won't copy these.

The copyright of your data when entered into the OpenStreetMap database will still be retained by you, however you should be aware that you would be agreeing to the data being made available under the Creative Commons CC-BY-SA license (

We like to provide attribution for all data so I will tag everything that comes from your maps with source=John The Map if that is alright with you.

Please advise whether I can proceed on this basis.


The John The Map site also has some maps of Ireland and the KKH (China/Pakistan Highway). For the sake of clarity, John Callanan has not given permission to copy from these, we only have permission to use the Goa maps.

AND data

The AND Data donated to the project, is mainly focused on the Netherlands but includes some road network coverage of India, which has recently been imported into the database. See mailing list post. Thanks to Kleptog


Indian Village Boundaries (All our work will be under Open Data Commons Open Database License (ODbL). )