Listed below are some sources of publicly available data for India that I have come across. They are available for download for free or by creating an account (e.g., Bhuvan/ICPSR). Even though the data are free, curating data takes a lot of time (and money) so please acknowledge (via correct citations) those who have made their data (and/or code) available and thus research possible. I also include links (in red) to freely available open source software that I have some experience using and where I think they maybe required. And also lastly wherever possible, I try to include articles on understanding data generating processes. 

Elections (state and national level):
- Election results (state and national) are published by the Election Commission of India. They are however in a pdf format. I have used Tabula to extract data from pdf to either a xls or csv format. There is also Poppler which a friend recommended but I have not used it.
- Rikhil Bhavnani has compiled election results (both state and national) from 1977-2012 and they are in a non-pdf format. Francesca R. Jensenius has also curated some electoral data.
Raphael Susewind has curated electoral data on religion and politics for Uttar Pradesh. To browse the sql files you can use sqlitebrowser.
- Interested in comparing election outcomes across countries then check out University of Michigan's Constituency-Level Elections Archive.

Politicians (individual level):
- Go to Association for Democratic Reforms to find out more about a politicianThis website has information about individual politician's financial assets and criminal records.

Conflict (events):
- Steve Wilkinson and Ashutosh Varshney coded events of conflict between Hindus and Muslims as reported by The Times of India beginning 1950 to 1995.
- Geocoded conflict data is made available by the Uppsala Conflict Data Program. To understand what has been coded please be sure to read their definitions page.
- (Understanding what events are reported by the media - peer reviewed articles on media coverage of conflict events and media coverage of protest events. The source material for conflict events are usually newspapers and/or human rights reports. If you have access to the raw text you can use AntConc for at least a preliminary text analysis.)

Satellite Imagery:
Bhuvan - a geoportal offered by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) for satellite imagery - has images which you can request to track changes in pattern of land use over time and space. I have some experience with QGIS to analyze images. I have also used R when some extraction needs be repeated multiple times.
- NOAA has made available VIIRS monthly nighttime images of the earth. VIIRS begins in 2012. India is in Tile 3 (75N/060E). Nighttime images before 2012 come from DMSP-OLS. The sensors in VIIRS have been calibrated differently as compared to DMSP-OLS, so the quality of images between the two is different.


Maps of South Asia over time:

Government Services:

Data on Changes in Rural India:
- Rural Economic and Demographic Survey (REDS) survey. According to NCAER: "The ARIS/REDS datasets, collected in four rounds between 1971 and 2006, form a database on villages and households across India allowing analyses on the micro characteristics of households and their interactions at the village, district, state and national levels. As a panel dataset spanning three decades, the data from the surveys allow in-depth analysis of economic, social and demographic changes in rural India and provide an empirical view of the evolution of policy and its impact on households." Please do read the readme.txt for more information.

- List of registered NGOs in India.

Values and Beliefs (individual level):
- Curious to see how peoples attitudes towards authorities have changed over times both in India and across countries? Check out the the World Values Survey.

Other stuff:
- I came across a link by the Princeton University Library which contains links to data on India. I have not gone through each one to see whether the data is available and if available then whether the data is free or not.
- The Open Government Data platform by the Government of India contains several demographic, economic, political and social indicators.
Gaurav Khanna is working on several data projects such as Maoist related conflict events. Please contact him if you are interested in anything. - Richard Morgan has geocoded rural road construction from 2000 to 2014. Again, please contact him if you are interested. 
- I also found this image that describes the data available along with the data source.

Note: All errors are mine. If you notice any errors please email me at ptriv [at] umich [dot] edu. Also if you want me to include/exclude your name, please email me.