Disclaimer – First things first, we’re not saying this applies to “every” man in the country. There’s no statement that applies to all of us, never can be. I assume (and hope) you carry that sensibility on your own while reading this piece.
I (Sanjay), proudly accept that I can come across as creepy in the western culture. However, after staying in the West and travelling around, I have come to realize some of the reasons why we Indian guys come across as creepy to the Western world. I would like to give you some of the background of where this is coming from. My hope is that in doing this, I might help you understand the local culture more and better interact with it so you can have a better experience while in India.
India is a very conservative society. Males and females are segregated from each other starting from school and there is very little social interaction between them. We are used to a world where men and women don’t talk to each other unless they need to or they are interested in each other, even then smiling doesn’t occur. When a Western women in this society chats up a local guy and smiles while admiring the local culture, the local sometimes takes it as a sign of interest. This gives him the dream of a beautiful white wife and life in a foreign rich country where he can fulfill his dreams and make his family rich. The feeling of love comes to his head and he is ready to do anything to achieve this dream.
Because of the limited social interactions with women, we are not used to flirting much and we flirt the way an inexperienced thirteen-year-old boy might do the Western culture. Also the social barriers change the way we flirt. During my high school years, I never had the courage to go straight up to a girl and talk her for fear of getting beaten up by her father or brothers. Instead, I would follow the girl back home (stalk) in a way that she notices for 8-10 days. Then I would dissapear for 3-4 days and follow her again. If she smiles upon seeing me, that would be an invitation to talk and then I would talk to her at a place where no one sees us or drop her a Letter:P. By Western standards, this is no doubt creepy and can(most probably) lead to a restraining order.
Locals think Western women are easy. Indian society is very conservative when it comes to sex before marriage. I can say this with certainty based on my own experiences with Indian girlfriends with the first relationship of 4 years without much sex (I had to try really really hard). By compairson, Indians, who get most of their knowlege about the West from Hollywood or from hearing stories of their friends living in the West, come to view Western society as being much more open inregards to sex. Without knowing the social dynamics of the West, many Indian men come to believe that Western societies do not vlaue it much or give it much meaning, which all goes towards making Indian men believe it is much more common and regular occurance. This belief that sex is easily had when combined with the average Indian man’s lack of knowledge about how to flirt or even talk to women can easily cause us to come across as quite weird when we try :).
All that said, a lot of us are really good/helping human beings in this country and Its good to be nice to locals and smile/mix with them to learn local culture. Calling an indian Brother/Bhaiya/Paaji would send him the right signal that you are not interested in him and would help keep the people with wrong intentions away.