According to the constitution of India, the country is a secular republic. Indian citizens are free to follow any religion and faith. Indians worship different Gods in many different ways. Religion with its rituals and philosophy forms the life style of any average individual born and brought up in India.
India has also created a platform for many religions from all over the world. However the main religions of India are Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, Buddhism, Islam, Christianity, Zoroastrianism and Judaism. Over 80% of Indians practice Hinduism, 13.45% of Indians practice Islam, 2.35% Christianity and 1.94% Sikhism. Popular faiths like Jainism and Buddhism which have originated in India are practiced all over the world today. But Parsis and Judais are a disappearing minority in India now.
All religions of India have a wide reach and are recognized for their strength all over the globe. Indian society follows a rigid caste system. Indian people normally marry within their own communities and castes. Most Indians have a tolerant attitude towards other castes and communities. India has preserved its secular outlook through volatile a history of foreign invasions.
Communal clashes in India do occur but more often than not they are based vested political interests than genuine religious differences. The freedom to practice any religion of his choice is a fundamental right of every Indian citizen. There is an ongoing attempt to modify the Indian constitution in order to establish a uniform civil code for all Indian citizens. This concept is still in the process of taking manifestation as a directive principal. Religious communities follow their own personal codes for now. However Indian law is the same for people of all communities in India.
Based on the religion, there are many religious festivals that are widely observed in India and they hold a great importance for the people. India’s secular governance states that no religious festival should be given the status of a national holiday. Holi, Ganesh Chaturthi, Diwali, Durga puja, Dussehra and Sankranthi are the most popular Hindu festivals in India. The Islamic Eid festivals of Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha are the most celebrated among the Muslims. Christmas, Buddha Jayanti, and Guru Nanak’s Birthday are holidays among the remaining religious groups. However, the best part is that be it any festival Indians from all castes and communities come together to celebrate the event.
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