India is a land of enormous internal diversity. On your journey from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, the cultures and things you encounter are lot more diverse and complicated than you think. There are many actions which seem to be normal to you but are extremely offensive in certain areas. Here we list ten things which is considered as offensive or bad throughout the country.
You can freely discuss about anything in India, especially politics. Most people will have an opinion but they will not mind their opinion being contradicted. But be careful while including the religion into any of your discussions especially with the strangers since it is one of the sensitive areas in the minds of Indian people and they will feel offended for no reason!
The beautiful backwater sceneries in Kerala and the story of Taj Mahal- the symbol of love may make you romantic. But think twice before performing any acts of love in public since the people around you in India is very conservative and doesn’t want to watch or do public displays of affection.
Left Hand Rule
You can give rest to your left hand while you are in India. Indian people never eat with their left hand or they won’t pass or receive anything with it. So remember – never give any gifts, money or anything with your left hand.
According to Indian culture, the head is considered as the superior part of the body and feet, the inferior. So try not to touch anything important with your feet, especially books. Also never point your feet at someone and if you do, express your apologies immediately. However touching elder’s feet is considered as a sign of respect in India.
Majority of Indian people dress conservatively and it is advisable if you do the same, especially when you are in rural areas. It is better not to wear revealing or tight clothing especially when you visit places of religious significance.
In India, it is generally not acceptable for men to shake hands with a woman until and unless she offers the same. If she extends her hand, you should reciprocate otherwise it is better to join your palms and wish her in Indian style.
It is generally considered as good manners to remove shoes and sandals before you enter someone’s home. In some temples, people are not allowed to enter into holy areas with their shirts on.
The rules related to gifts vary in different parts of India. In some areas it is considered as an offence to gift white flowers since they are used in funerals. Gifting alcohol and animal-skin made products are considered as offensive in some other areas. Generally it is better to carry some sweets along with you when you are invited to someone’s home.
Smoking and drinking in Public
In India, it is offensive to consume alcohol or smoke in public. Even if you smoke, remember to ask the permission, otherwise it is considered rude. You are also not allowed to hunt or hurt animals, especially cow, which is considered as a holy animal in many areas.
Last but not the least, there are a lot of spiritually elevated people in each and every corner of India who offers magic remedies and spiritual salvation and there is no way you can distinguish the crooks. So as a traveler, it is advisable not to get into their traps and lose your money.