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Being Brown: What’s Wrong with Indian Society?

Disclaimer: This is going to be an opinionated rant. Take it or leave it.

The one thing I get the most from people when I meet them for the first time: “OMG, you’re Indian. I would have never guessed!”

Over the years I’ve blamed this comment over my pale skin, blondish hair, excessive height and thick American accent. But recently I’ve realized that perhaps it’s been a conscious move to distance myself from my ethnicity.

It’s not that I hate India or being Indian – I love our movies, food, cricket, and culture. What I cannot stand is how Indian society treats women, with the following clip being a perfect example of it:


For those of you a little lost, the above clip shows some of Indian televisions most popular female stars playing a game against each other to see who can touch the maximum number of feet in a set amount of time. You read that right, a game involving touching your feet.

In Indian culture, when a girl gets married and moves to her marital home, she is expected to touch the feet of all her elders as a mark of respect. In the few Indian weddings I’ve attended, I’ve seen the poor brides dressed in outfits weighing several kilos have to touch the feet of an endless line of aunties and uncles. What’s the point of this? The same women bitch about the aunties/uncles the minute they are left alone. So how does this promote respect and reverence?

I know there is a high likelihood that I’ll be pushed to do the same if I ever do get married one day but if I can help it, I won’t let my future daughter ever be subjected to the same.

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