Although the cow is sacred to the Hindu religion, the use of cows' milk for drinking, and the eating of milk-products, such as cheese and butter, are permitted. As of 2013, India is the largest milk producing nation in the world.
The killing of cows is not permitted in India, and Hindu's do not eat beef. The Hindu religion is practiced by the majority of people in the Indian subcontinent and is the world's third largest religion. Hinduism, is one of the oldest religions in the world, dating back over 4,000 years, originating from an area near the river Indus in India.