The success of Indian democracy with more than 1 billion population,
29 states, 7 union territories and 1600 languages/dialects presents a
true image of unity in diversity With a civilization more than 5000
years old, India reflects rich culture, traditions and values relative
to geographic locations. Invasions and migrations have contributed to
the diversity of Indian culture with convergence of different habits,
faiths and practices.
India is a land of festivals. Indian festivals differ in associated
religious, social and seasonal elements. Some festivals welcome the
seasons of the year, the harvest, the rains, or the full moon. Others
celebrate religious occasions, the birthdays of divine beings, saints,
and gurus (revered teachers), or the advent of the New Year. List of
Indian festivals is as long as diversity in their origin. Many
festivals are common throughout the country while others are specific
to geographic regions and religious beliefs.
Indian cuisine is world renowned for its rich assortment of spices and
tastes. Influence of geography, religion, race and foreign culture is
truly reflected by Indian cuisine. Indian cuisine can be broadly
classified into North and South Indian cuisine. Wheat is staple part
of North Indian cuisine whereas rice is a must in South Indian meal.
The Mughlai food is very common in Delhi, Hyderabad and Lucknow.
Wazwan, a 24-course banquet, is popular in Kashmir. Seafood and
coconut based food are very prevalent in Goa, Kerala and West Bengal.
Rice, sambhar and dosa are specialties of Southern part of India.
India has one the oldest film industries in the world. The first
Indian feature film, Raja Harishchandra directed by Dadasaheb Phalke
(3700 feet long), was released in 1913. Indian film industry is the
biggest film industries in the world producing around 800 movies
annually. A reasonably budgeted Indian movie could cost US$ 1 million.
Hindi, Tamil, Telegu, Bengali and Malayalam are the languages
producing large number of movies reflecting the cultural diversity of
the Indian film industry. Most of the Indian movies are based on
family, romance, comedy, action, patriotism and religion.
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