The Republic of India is the seventh largest and with over a billion inhabitants the second most populous country in the world. A typical characteristic for this country is the style of dressing – women here wear brightly colored saris which you will also see at AsianFest. The Indian cuisine, just like the country itself, is a mix of different ethnicities and religious groups. In India, the range of meals varies considerably from region to region, and especially in this country, the poorer the region, the simpler the meals. The basic ingredients are rice and wheat and the cuisine is characteristic for its heavy usage of spices and the predominance of vegetarian dishes in some regions. India is one of the world’s largest tea producers. Until 1947, India was under the influence of the British colonial government. It was one of the world’s greatest spiritual leaders, Mahatma Gandhi, who led India to independence. Later, his birthday was declared the “International Day of Non-Violence” by the UN.