In recent years, news headlines have pictured India as a land of fear, abuse and, in particular, rape. As a lover of the subcontinent and someone who has travelled to 30 of its 36 states and union territories, I beg to disagree. As much as it has some violent hotspots, such as the extremely poor state of Bihar and the back lanes of Delhi, it also has some of the most hospitable and genuine people I have ever met. In India, the guest is a gift from the gods, and for this reason, many times doors have opened for us and entire families have taken care of me and Kit Yeng as part of their own.
It is time to demystify media horror stories and remind people that India is a pulsating, colourful and benevolent land of rickshaws and the luckier cows on Earth.
Chan Kit Yeng is a Penang-born freelance travel photographer and tourist guide. When she's not snapping pictures and playing with local kids in some off-the-beatenpath location, she can most likely be found hiking in Penang's remotest jungle thickets.
Marco Ferrarese is a musician, author and travel writer. He has written about overland travel and extreme music in Asia for a variety of international publications, and blogs at www.monkeyrockworld.com. His first novel, Nazi Goreng, is available at bookstores. Follow him on Twitter @monkeyrockworld.