What do young people in Iran think about India and Indians?
Farzan Safavi, Expert on dating, relationships and love
Very positive surprisingly.
Iranians are very proud and patriotic nation. Iranians can come across as racist and this is evident based on their questions on Quora. Comparing yourself to Germans or Italians is pathetic. Iranians are largely multi ethnic. Some are white (like me) some are brown or few are black. Most of us have dark hair, mine is ginger, with mostly brown eyes, green is common and blue is rare.
We like to believe we are related to Germans and Italians are our cousins, and this is just outrageous but realistically we look closer to Turkish, Lebanese, Syrians, Iraqi, Afghan, Armenian, Georgian, Pakistani and sometimes even Indian people.
Being the whitest Iranian out there myself, I have never been told I look German or Swedish or even Italian. The most exotic I often get is Brazilian when I’m tanned during summer times or Lebanese, or Syrian sometimes as Afghan too and it’s okay, not a big deal, I could be a handsome Afghan looking Iranian, it’s not end of the world.
In the view of Iranians toward Indians for what I have observed Indians can be seen as rich successful minority abroad specially in the field of business, finance, technology, STEM and medicine particularly heart surgery, seriously what’s the obsession with heart surgery??
I wish Iranians were as happy as Indians, because they both share a lot of similarities and traditions are incredibly similar. For instance, Diwali was also a festival in the Zoroastrian pre Islamic Persia era celebrated by Iranians during Mehregan month. For some Iranians, Indians can be seen as too Happy or delusional. I find Indian people to be a lot healthier mentally, it must be all that meditation and yoga. I also think younger Indian generation respect their elderly more, especially their grand parents and parents more than the younger Iranians. I’m very disappointed with the young generation of Iran, especially those under 30 years of age.
What’s a negative trait about both cultures, they always find inspiration from their neighbour but not from themselves, its always they have more, or it’s their fault for my misery, both Indians and Iranians on average are always looking to blame someone else’s for their own miseries and problems.
译文来源：三泰虎 http://www.santaihu.com/47695.html 译者：Joyceliu
The grass is always greener somewhere else, for Indians, Iran is a clean, powerful Muslim country, for Iranians, India is a corrupt happy nation with abundant social freedom. There’s legal alcohol and hijab is not mandatory.
I’m very direct, blunt and straight to the point and for this you can call me German but not for my ginger hair.
1.Update - I forgot to mention our similarities are greater than our differences, we have a lot more in common than we imagine, our ancestors did their best to preserve what’s known today as tradition and culture, let’s build stronger bridges, stronger relations to preserve our roots for what’s needed for the earth, let’s pave the energy to the next generation and make our ancestors proud of what we have become and what kind of a Persia and India we can build together as civilizations.
Usha Wadhwa, studied Knows English, Hindi, Farsi, Urdu and a Bit of Gurumukhi.
Even after reading so many answers I decide to write because we have lived in Tehran for three and a half years and it will be very ungrateful of me not to write about all the love and affection, even respect that we have received from those highly cultured people.
My husband’s colleagues and friends were mostly engineers. And those who were educated abroad knew workable English but when you are living at a place for a longer duration you come in contact with common people too.
So now my problem is, from where to start?
Iranians are very outgoing, friendly people. On the weekly holiday parks and gardens are full of families picnicking there. Whenever we went there someone from these unknown families would come and talk to us, invite us and offer us tea and snacks. They are crazy about our Hindi movies, though they may not follow a word of it. Though their movies are of very high quality, Hindi types of movies are not made there, can not be made because a girl without ‘hijab’ can't be shown publicly. And because of this movie craze they are also aware of some of our traditions. Many a times it happened that I was sitting on a bench in the park all by myself, the youngsters would come and with hands awkwardly folded try to say ‘Namastey.’ A cassette of Hindi songs or a DVD was the most cherished gift. Because of the common Aryan race it is difficult to differentiate between the Iranians and North Indians, they recognized me because of the red ‘bindi’ on my fore head. (The word Iran comes from Arayan. Old name is Persia.)
When we went to the market for our daily purchases, the shopkeeper would immediately become friendly on learning that we are from Hindustan. ‘Hindi! Dust Dust’ ) he would keep repeating and will refuse to charge money. ‘ - ‘you are our guest’ he would say. Even the unknown taxi driver wilł refuse at first. Of course it was their way of showing respect and we always paid which was expected. But he accepted it as if he has got a gift- with a lot of thanks and good wishes.
The Iranians are totally non- vegetarian. They have no concept of totally vegetarian food. If I ordered a pizza at restaurant I specifically told them that I want only tomatoes and capsicum as topping. But the waiter often brought the pizza with a few ‘salamis’ over it, saying-’mehman hasti’. You are our guest and these are on my behalf. How do you explain to such an affectionate person that a strict vegetarian will not even like to eat the food touched by some non vegetarian item. I just removed the salami after he left and ate the rest.
When I learnt Farsi and started reading the books I found many quotes and anecdotes about India all showing India or Hindustan as they prefer to call it, in good light. They are very cultured people. Reading material is available at low prices and you can see a driver reading a newspaper while waiting instead of gossiping for hours as we see here. All those of the science stream- doctors and engineers that I met, there was not a single who did not know about his poets. Gardner or a housewife, everyone would quote from Omar Khayam or Hafiz. The longest night, the 21st of December is spent together by family members by singing or reading poetry of Hafiz, Baba Tahir and others.
In spite of converting to Islam, Iranians have kept some of the old Zorastrian traditions alive. This makes them feel separate from Arab world but for Hindustan they have full respect. Though the government tries to paint a darker picture of India- highlighting the evils like ‘Sati’ as if it were an everyday event, people in general, from professionals to laborers have great love and respect for India.
Mehran Janghorbani, lived in Iran (2014-2018)
I like them. All that you said is true, yes, Iran invaded India some 300 years ago (incidentally, the last time that we were engaged in an aggressive war) and we got lots of jewels from that campaign which you can still see in the national bank museum in Tehran (and in the Tower of London since some of them found their way into British hands). You have good relations with Israel and are Hindus. Now none of these facts are in the forefront of an Iranian mind when he thinks of India.
When we think of India, we think Bollywood (generally, Amithaab Bhachan, Shahrukh Khan or Aishwariya Rai), we think shared history, we think great food (obviously not as good as Iranian food but a close second ;-)) and we think awesome temples and forts, and of course peacocks, cobras, tigers and elephants. we also know India to be a great and important to economic partner and we consider Indians to be hard working, educated, stoic, family oriented and frustratingly unable to get fat.
The only negative thing that any Iranian would say about India is that its big cities are dirty, everyone talks about people relieving themselves in the street, in full giew of everybody else; now I have never been to India (which tops my bucket list along with visiting Japan and Russia) so I don't know how true these stories are but that seems to be the most striking feature of Indian cities in Iranian minds.
Rahul Shah, Non-residential Indian!
I have dated an Iranian girl. I am Indian(As my name suggests). We are both teenagers. She is one year younger.
She told me that all her life she has loved hindi things. She is from Tehran. She has travelled to many places and even India, with her family(It is before we met).
She likes Indian jewellery and she only prefers wearing gold jewellery(for personal reasons).
She loves kebab and I love it too. She loves Indian food(especially Biryani). They speak Persian in Iran and surprisingly many words of Persian vocabulary are similar to Hindi words in their meanings too. Like Zendegi(Life) is same in both Farsi and Hindi.
She thinks Indian girls are beautiful. But I think Iranian girls are even more.
She loved the Amir Khan movie “PK” and although she doesn't like SRK but most of her cousins love Shah Rukh.
They also use a lot of Indian products in their day-to-day lives.
The fact that I have been her boyfriend is proof that Iranian people like India and vice-versa.
In fact I never heard her telling any negative thing about India.
I love Iran too.
Amir Davis, Born and raised in Iran.
I was actually born and spent the first 13 years of my life in Iran (the name's a nom de plume) and the first 12 years of that was during the time of the Shah, so my perspective might be a little dated. However, I don't see how much could have changed since the ties between India and Iran run deep. I remember that there were three basic things about India I learned as a child from my parents and society:
1) We're related. Everyone pretty much was aware that Indians and Iranians were part of the same tribe that split off long ago before Cyrus the Great, and it was obvious that Indian languages and Persian (and other Iranic languages) shared a root, which brings me to my next point;
2) Every Iranian must watch Indian movies or his education isn't complete. I must have watched Sangam and Sholeh at least twenty times! Does anyone know what happened to Raj Kapour? I haven't thought about him in a long time...
3) An Iranian mustn't be fooled by the fact that Indian food and Persian food look similar and even have similar names (polau, roghan joosh, etc.). If an Iranian eats Indian food, he will spend the rest of the day drinking milk to get over the spiciness! Iranian food, for the most part, is not spicy at all and so we have almost zero tolerance. Once we develop some tolerance, most Iranians can't get enough of Indian food.
As an Iranian, I think of Indians as our Aryan Brothers who branched off and migrated east.
Before the Arab invasion of Iran and the coming of Islam, both the countries had cordial relations. Even after the coming of Islam the only blot in the relationship between our two countries was Nadir Shah’s invasion of India in 1739
Zoroastrianism which is one of the world's oldest monotheistic religions and originated in Iran has many similarities to Indian-Hinduism including fire worship.
Zoroastrianism and Hinduism have close resemblances. For example Both the religions worship fire god, Both have religious languages are sound alike. Both Teachings agree that Ahura/Asura and Daeva/Deva both were Celestial Beings and later one of the group would then be casted out- Similar with God & Satan in Christianity isn't it?
For Hinduism, Deva remained Gods & Asura were the casted out group because of their greediness and wildness. On the Other Hand, Zoroastrianism Ahura was the God and the Daevas were casted out because bringing evil thoughts in Humans, Both respects the sacred plant juice [ Haoma (Zoroastrianism) & Soma (Hinduism)] and both Religions says it was drunk by the Celestial beings in both the religions.
The prayers in both the religions involve burning incense, chanting Mantra.
I have recently started taking interest in the pre-Islamic past of my country after visiting the city of Yazd. The architecture of the ancient fire temple in that city captivated my imagination.
Here is the picture of that temple:
I am a liberal Iranian educated in the USA who is a Shia by faith but I like to learn more about the pre-Islamic history of my country under various emperors like Cyrus and Darius.
The Parsi who are descendents of ancient Iranians and are now settled in India also use coconuts and. grains of rice during their Navjyot and wedding ceremonies just like the Hindus.
I would love to visit India and tour many cities like Mumbai, Agra and New Delhi and I hope to make many Indian friends on Quora.
Aboulqasem Kouhyar, I'm an Iranian
Thanks for A2A.
You can find traces of India (known as Hend and Hendustan in Iran) in all major works of Persian literature and also in most of folklore stories, from pre-Islamic Pahlavi texts to Sadeq Hedayat's The Blind Owl. I can easily claim that India is the most famous foreign country in Persian literature and folklore. The cinema of India and Indian actors are very popular in Iran. Almost anybody could predict the ending of an Indian movie, because everybody saw dozens of them and most of the time they are quite the same. At the end of the movie, the poor proves to be more worthy than rich, the girl (who is very poor) and the boy (who is ultra rich) are eventually able to please the boy's father for their marriage, and the good guy manages to avenge the bad guy (who killed all of the relatives of the good guy when the good guy was a child). In schools, we study about Gandhi, Nehru, Tagore, Mughal Empire and Mahmoud and Neder's invasion and sack of India (which I hope you forgive us). India is also famous for having many wonderful animals like Cobras, Peafowls, Elephants, Parrots and others. There are many famous stories about various types of Indian animals in Persian literature. Panchatantra (known as Kalileh and Demneh in Persian) is one the most famous literature works in Iran and every Iranian is expected to read this book. We are also well aware of Mughal Empire and the influence of Persian language in the Indian subcontinent. The Persian language owes too much to poets and authors from Indian Subcontinent.
Mohammad Sadri, B.A. Studying Software Engineering, University of Tehran
Well, that’s sort of a good question. I’ll tell you my idea about the whole India with a short story. Back in 2008 when Slumdog Millionaire was released, it was the very first time I saw several sides of India from Hollywood’s perspective ; a country with high level of poverty, a region with advanced level of English with sort of a weird accent , a country that fully respect their tradition and a country that you can’t separate Tech from their people. I emphasis on this word ; Tech.
Because no matter how much I talk about their history, this word —Tech— is the very first word that pops in my mind whenever I hear India.
You may ask why, but here's the thing : everything that I’ve searched in categories like Coding and in overall software problems , more than 60% of the suggestions were from Indians side. So I put India among the nations with the highest level of Computer knowledge . Over the years , India just introduced some of the best CEOs in the silicon valley who became my heros like : Sundar Pichai, Satya Nadella ,..
And also as Bengaluru is the Silicon Valley of Asia , I truly praise and respect Indians at least in my own major - Software Engineering- .
P.S. And at last, I think Indians are not a very big fan of Apple products and the whole IOS thing. Cuz from my perspective, they mostly support Android and I know them as Android users.
1.Update : The Bengaluru picture just got updated ; I googled the first image and still mentions it as Bengaluru not my fault.
2.Update + : Slumdog Millionaire is not the way and angle that I see India(Don’t get it wrong). That’s so true that Hollywood just wants to exaggerate everything. I’m fully aware the movie doesn’t show the real India and cut to the chase, it’s just a movie and I watched it as a kid ; just like one of the worst movies I've ever seen in my whole life about my country Iran ,Argo (Oscar winning movie) which just showed Iran as very screwed region. Just like 300 movie ,which showed us very brutal people who we are NOT. And here we have Slumdog Millionaire. As I said it was just a movie which showed me what kinda country India is but not in details ; since then, India has changed a lot for sure, the level of poverty is decreasing almost every year and so on.
3.Thank you so much for your reading and kind responds.