By Molly Daly

By Molly Daly

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Council of Indian Organizations in Greater Philadelphia held its annual festival at Penn’s Landing’s Great Plaza Saturday. The event celebrates one of the world’s oldest and most diverse cultures.

Organization president Manish Ingle says the festival is held to mark the anniversary of India’s independence from Britain 58 years ago:

“We are in America, the oldest democracy. And today, India is the biggest democracy. When the British left, I wouldn’t say India was India. People were separated by cultures, because everyone has their own culture. But when we got independence, I think India came together as the India we know today.”

Under a blue sky studded with puffy clouds, booths served up food, clothing, yoga, and some of the subcontinent’s religious traditions.

Doreen, down from New York with a friend, says she didn’t get far before something caught her eye:

“The jewelry. And a lot of the dresses — I saw a few dresses — the embroidery. I love the embroidery on the dresses.”

Dance was the main attractions as more than 40 groups performed.  A dance team from Drexel was among.

Of the 16 members of Drexel Dandiya, only five were able to make it. Rushi’s an econ-finance major who says it’s worth the work:

“The competitions, the amount of people you meet around the country. All the other schools the other teams it’s amazing. What’s the hardest thing? Practice. We practice almost 15-20 hours a week. It’s hard, but you get used to it, and you love it so much, it doesn’t make a difference.”

Not surprisingly, they wowed the crowd.


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