Breaking Bad: Breaking Every Stereotype About Indian States

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(c) Jennifer Wu

Photo of Breaking Bad: Breaking Every Stereotype About Indian States by Samarth Arora

India is a land of many colours. The people are well known for their love for each other, yet that doesn’t come to surface without hitting it hard with a few stereotypes for the neighbouring states. Presenting, a list of clichéd typecasts that Indians believe about other states and an unveiling of how different the truth is.

Stereotype:

• Only the Sikh live here

• There’s always someone doing Balle Balle 24/7 in the mustard fields

Image Credit: Max Pixel

Photo of Punjab, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Apart from the valorous Sardars, Hindus form an important part of the electoral scene here with a total population of more than 38% in Punjab. The next time you visit Punjab, please don’t expect people to be singing Ghar Aaja Pardesi in mustard fields. It’s not happening.

Stereotype:

• Everybody is somebody (Tu janta nahi mera baap kaun hai!/ You don’t know who my father is!)

Image Credit: Flickr

Photo of Delhi, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Everyone in Delhi has used this one-liner at least once in their life, but only to prove their dominance. This is a hoax and millions are commoners struggling in their daily lives, as much as everyone else in the country.

Stereotype:

• Maharashtra=Mumbai=film stars everywhere

Image Credit: Pixabay

Photo of Maharashtra, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Maharashtra has 10 cities, more than 36 districts, 109 sub-divisions and 357 talukas. Mumbai is not even considered the cultural capital of Maharashtra, Pune is.

Stereotype:

• Another name for Bihar

• Only known for MS Dhoni

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Photo of Jharkhand, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Jharkhand and Bihar are two separate entities. Jharkhand is the second largest producer of mineral wealth in the country and has much more to offer to the nation other than Captain Cool MS Dhoni

Just look at this list of beautiful spots in Jharkhand!

Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Telangana, Karnataka:

Stereotype:

• Everyone is Madrasi and Mallu

• All the food is made of rice and coconut oil, Aiyayiyo!

Image Credit: Pexels

Photo of Breaking Bad: Breaking Every Stereotype About Indian States by Samarth Arora

Fact: The term ‘Madrasi’ vanished with the name change to Chennai. Chennai is the capital of Tamil Nadu. ‘Mallu’ is the abbreviation for Malayalis i.e. people from Kerala, who speak of Malayalam. Learn before you speak – South India has 5 states. 5 different states with nothing in common (not food, not language, not even the same geography) should never be confused with each other or called by such terms. Each of them has its own unique vibe and cultural importance. Speaking of food, Malabar Fish Curry, Beef, Chettinad Chicken, Upma and Pesarattu are only some of the delicacies that are not made of rice and would have you asking for more every time you give them a try!

This list brings out the best of South India for you!

Stereotype:

• Pure Veg State

• Dandiya 24/7

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Photo of Gujarat, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Gujarat is NOT strictly a vegetarian state. While non-vegetarians are a minority in most of Gujarat, plenty of options are easily available. Surat definitely holds a larger meat eating population. And yes, they love Dandiya, their folk dance with sticks, but no one is free enough to do that 24/7! They wait for celebrations and festivals to pour their hearts out.

Stereotype:

• A lot of camels, Red Turbans (Safa), Dessert/ sandstorms

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Photo of Rajasthan, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Rajasthan has changed a lot over the years. Cities are developed and sandstorms are a thing of the past. Turbans have become a Classic, worn mostly by the elderly. While Camel safari is an integral part of Rajasthan tourism, it is not easy to enjoy it anywhere. Only certain parts around Thar provide this vibrant experience.

Stereotype:

• This isn’t a state, but a rowdy village in Punjab

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Photo of Haryana, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Rowdy or not, Haryana is a state in itself and holds great importance historically as well as economically. What, you ask? The battle of Mahabharata was fought here in Kurukshetra. Gurugram, the IT hub of North India lies in Haryana. The list of successful sports persons brewing out of Haryana is endless. Sadly, the harsh tone of this state gives it a strong sense of rashness, which isn’t always the case.

Stereotype:

• Himachal = Kasol, Mcleodganj & drugs

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Photo of Himachal Pradesh, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: There's so much to see in Himachal that I don't even want to try to convince you.

Read this and be mesmerised!

North-east India:

Stereotype:

• One big state

• Home to ‘chinky’ people and momos

Image Credit: Pixabay

Photo of Breaking Bad: Breaking Every Stereotype About Indian States by Samarth Arora

Fact: North-East India comprises of eight states – Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, and Tripura. Each state is culturally and topographically a marvel in its own. Though momos or dimsums have gained mass popularity in other states of the country, they are not even considered much important in these states, since their local cuisine extends to some very unique flavours. The term ‘Chinky’ means someone who resembles Chinese and this word was definitely born out of jealousy because people with an "Asian" look have the most beautiful eyes on the planet.

Let this DIY itinerary help you understand better!

Stereotype:

• The new name for Hyderabad

• Biryani, biryani and more biryani

Image Credit: Pixabay

Photo of Telangana, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Hyderabad is the capital of Telangana, the 12th largest state in India. As for food, Hyderabadi Biryani is only one of the countless dishes here that make you drool like a child!

Stereotype:

• Hide! It’s the Naxalites under my bed, in the bathroom, inside the fridge, everywhere!

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Photo of Chhattisgarh, India by Samarth Arora

Fact: Well… read this and let your mind develop a new image for this gem of a place.

Stereotype:

• It's all about terrorism.

Image Credit: Flickr

Photo of Jammu and Kashmir by Samarth Arora

Fact: Nothing is more befitting than Mughal emperor Jahangir’s couplet for Kashmir from the 17th Century, “Agar firdous baroye zameen ast, hami asto, hami asto hami ast.” (If there is paradise on earth, it is here, it is here, it is here). While militancy is evidently on a high, it’s not everything or the only thing keeping Kashmir alive today.

Stereotype:

• A small hill station in North-East India that produces Bahadurs and momos wali aunty

Image Credit: Pixabay

Photo of Nepal by Samarth Arora

Fact: Why does this one even exist? Repeat after me - Nepal is NOT a part of India! It’s a beautiful neighbour that exchanges a lot with us on friendly terms, just as good neighbours do. And this is much more than watchmen that we lovingly call Bahadur or the lady vending momos.

Not in India, beautiful nonetheless!

Do you know of any stereotypes that are not on this list? Share your list here.

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