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Mumbai moves forward

Dave » 14 years 14 weeks ago

The residents of the thriving metropolis of Mumbai are pushing on in the wake of the eight explosions that rocked its transportation lifeline, killing some 200 people and maiming hundreds more.

From an Associated Press story:

“Life must go on,” 32-year-old commuter Sachin Kotian said as he resolutely prepared to board a train at the Matunga station, one of the worst-hit sites.

Mumbai, formerly known as Bombay, is the commercial and entertainment capitol of India, and is the country’s most populous city. It used to be the home of textile mills, but its economy has since grown to include a vibrant services industry rich in engineering, and it is a major outsourcing hub and corporate destination.

[T]he overall impression Wednesday was of a community trying hard to pull together and soldier on.

Mumbaikars are conscious of their city’s image as resilient, exciting and self-assured, the shining success story in India’s steady economic rise, and few seemed willing to surrender that reputation. Even the Bombay Stock Exchange defied expectations and closed up 3%.

“Mumbai is the heart of India,” said Neha Mehta, 24, “and Mumbai people are very practical.”

To be sure, the outsourcing community was indeed shaken by a major attack in this key outsourcing locale, raising concerns for anyone sourcing technology globally.

From eWeek:

In the wake of the attacks, outsourcing providers in Mumbai scrambled to make sure employees and customer data were safe and secure. Meanwhile, outsourcing customers sought reassurances that their Indian partners could handle future unforeseen events.

The good news is that customers are reassured, reporting that providers in the region have been very responsive, and analysts don’t forsee any negative impact to investment into India. eWeek also documents how a number of leading players in India handled the attack.

When you hear of or read about India and its pace of change, you get a clear picture of a very ambitious people. Barred from the world stage until the economic reforms of the early 90’s, India is a democracy committed to “making up for lost time” in its pursuit of economic opportunities. The attacks of 7/11, it seems, will not stop Mumbai from moving forward.