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Old February 1st, 2009, 01:20 PM   #1
GJ10
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Ahmedabad Discussions & General News

Not exactly development news per se, but I guess the concerns go to show how real the construction boom is...

Construction Boom to Sap Ill-Equipped Brick Industry

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Ahmedabad The expected construction boom because of Vibrant Gujarat investment commitments along with the Sabarmati riverfront and GIFT City projects will spur the demand for bricks several times over in times to come. But the disarray in the brick industry raises doubts about its capacity to meet the high demand.

The industry is currently facing severe problems of supply of lignite, a critical input for producing quality bricks. Not only supply is erratic, but also the quality is not up to the mark, say brick manufacturers, who are already facing labour related issues.

Vijay Shah, prominent city-based estate developer, has said the demand for bricks would go up not just because of the riverfront and GIFT City projects, but also because of no let up in the government construction activity. The demand for bricks in these two major ventures, however, might not be as high as expected, because there would be lots of steel structures involved in them.

He said projects had of late slowed down due to lowered disposal of ready houses compared to what it had been in the hay-day of the construction activity. Admitting that the brick industry might not be able to keep pace with the demand because of its own

inherent problems, the construction business had other options for traditional bricks. For example, fly-ash bricks could substitute them, but its supply is limited.

Meanwhile, after the brick kiln workers in Sanand partly succeeded over the issue of raise in wages recently, workers in Adalaj (which has the largest number of kilns in the state) and Mehsana joined the movement, which Int Bhattha Mazdoor Union had launched as a statewide agitation.

The brick kiln workers union had launched the movement against the alleged exploitation with regard to payment of wages. According to them, the wage for 1,000 bricks, which a husband-wife duo or at times three labourers together take 16 to 18 hours to make, is Rs 122 for eight hours. For additional hours, the wage should technically double. But with the workers getting Rs 230 for 16 hours, the wages for eight hours add up to only Rs 50 approximately. Over and above the low wages, the workers in most parts of the state who opt for overtime have to fund the cost of lighting kerosene lamps as well
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Old February 24th, 2009, 11:03 PM   #2
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Not exactly development news per se, but I guess the concerns go to show how real the construction boom is...

Construction Boom to Sap Ill-Equipped Brick Industry
Are you kidding me? They are going to use bricks in these buildings. Bad choice, especially in the earthquake zone. I guess they haven't learned any lesson from the 2001 earthquake.

Last edited by dhim100; February 25th, 2009 at 06:08 AM.
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Old February 25th, 2009, 06:34 PM   #3
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[QUOTE=GJ10;32092772]Personally, I feel that if Modi's image outside of Gujarat wasnt still tarnished by what happened 7years ago in the aftermath of the Godhra incident, he would be heralded all around India (and possibly beyond) as a textbook examble of how to govern effectively in an emerging market nation.

I can definately agree that Modi and the Govt of Gujarat in general are an excellent example of how to use the media to attract foreign investment, all the videos and presentations they produce are top notch, they really do a great job selling Gujarat to the outside world. Do i see this as a bad thing? Not particularly, in the global market there is so much choice nowadays in terms of where to invest, the world is a very small place all of a sudden. If Modi can continue to attract investment to Gujarat, thats all that matters, whether hes being too much of a showman or a salesman isnt particularly important to me or to anyone who will directly benefit from Gujarats continued growth.

In terms of how Gujarat will fund these projects, if we can continue to underline our position as the number 1 investment location in India, simple economies of scale will help attract further investment. In the current global market, there is more fear than anytime in many years, if as Modi intends, Gujarat becomes recognised internationally as a "safe-bet" investment destination, investment flow may not actually be much of a concern.

I also like to see myself as a realist rather than an optimist, I feel that India as a whole over the past decade or so has been putting an unhealthy amount of emphasis on a couple of shaky sectors, predominantly the IT Industry but also Luxury Real Estate and the Building of Shopping Malls. Aside from the failed experiment with Malls, Im glad that Gujarat as a whole has avoided this route.



GJ10 - I mostly agree with your comments in your post; as far as Modi's image goes, other politicians should immulate him and do (in their states) what he has done in Gujarat. People should not and must not view him from the view point of Godhra and the reason behind that is that Godhra was an unfortunate incident and people from both sides of the fence should be spoken about. The incident started by the burning of the train, in which female and children were the highest fatalities and we know the culprits who started the fire.
The aftermath of the fire and what Modi did has not been proven but the fact about all the past riots between hindus and muslims, what I have heard from my parents and grandparents is that Hindus were killed in big numbers and majority of them are(were) scared of Muslims.
I am not in favor of killing and I am a person who visits all; temples, masjids, churches but when someone talks about Modi in a negative way because of that incident then that person needs to check his/her image in the mirror and speak about Modi afterwards.
Lot of the things Modi did during the so called dark era of 2002 carnage has actually helped the government govern properly and efficiently.

Well, for now I am leaving at this and may be some day talk more about it.
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Old February 25th, 2009, 10:47 PM   #4
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Gandhiji1 - What do you mean by "Lot of the things Modi did during the so called dark era of 2002 carnage has actually helped the government govern properly and efficiently?" Please explain.
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Old February 26th, 2009, 02:40 AM   #5
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Gandhiji1 - What do you mean by "Lot of the things Modi did during the so called dark era of 2002 carnage has actually helped the government govern properly and efficiently?" Please explain.

Before 2002, certain areas of Ahmedabad were inaccessible for people and even police due to the fear and total disrespect and disregard of law. Ahmedabad Electricity Board employee could not go to houses to read electric meter, even after catching a household stealing electricty could not execute any measures to stop it. The only thing they could do is issue a summons or a notice with a nominal fine, either would be torn up in his face and nothing would done afterwards. The whole residential complexes would come up in an open land with no access to sewage, electricity or water. The residents would tap in to a grid and light up the whole complex. Illegal water well would be dug up and water would be pulled.
After 2002, electricity board employees or any other governmental agency were and are given proper access. If theft is reported then the fines are paid before the employee would reach the office.
People are paying respect to the law (not as much as in western countries). The fear of inaccessibility has been evaporated because proper support to govern is provided by the CM Mr. Modi.
All I would say is that strong execution methods applied by Modi has worked and it will work.
The only reason in US (I see it on a daily basis) people abide by the law is because the consequences of not abiding by the law are not small and could prevent you from getting a job or a loan.

Jai Hind.
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Old February 26th, 2009, 03:11 AM   #6
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Gandhiji1 - Wow. Shocking. Shocking that these types of lawless areas and people existed in Ahmedabad. It is also shocking that just one incidence suddenly changed these people in to a law abiding people.

You said "that strong execution methods applied by Modi has worked and it will work." That statement is quite vague. Please explain.
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Old February 28th, 2009, 04:23 PM   #7
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Gandhiji1 -
You said "that strong execution methods applied by Modi has worked and it will work." That statement is quite vague. Please explain.
Well I can give you few real life example, specially when Gandhiji1 is talking about Electricity theft, I knew someone who was high ranking officer in GEB (Gujarat electricity board), he had AC in his all room and was using free electricity from main line. No one was going to stop him, and he was doing this from 15 years.. One day top guys of Modi came, on the spot they fried him from his job and gave 12L rs bill with penalty! Well guy was so shocked that eventually he lost control on his mind. Ofcruse he made good money in these many years so his family paid 12L but he lost his job.

Another example, My cousin is high ranking officer in GEB (now its divided in 4 cos), when they used to go for surprise checking, all business owner and people knew that checking is coming on this day at this time:-). Modi's top guy changed this method. They plan surprise checking in advance, but now it was even surprise for regular officer too. One day My cousin got call at 4 AM and asked him to come to xyz place with no cell phone. Once all officers reach to that place. Separate mini van came they all get into that van. Only one person knew where they are going. And they just go to that area/town/village. On that day my cousin went to the one factory which had history of massive power theft., and it was own by x CM son. :-)

Speaking of law less area, I know exactly which area he is talking about, and I can tell you what he is telling is truth. Another master stroke played by Modi to control this law less area is, his govt build ( or building) office for all Ahmedbad's ACPs right in middle of this area.
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Old March 1st, 2009, 01:38 AM   #8
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Thanks Wallst, I had no idea that the Modi administration has actually changed people's thinking towards the law.
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Old April 5th, 2009, 08:07 PM   #9
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I just realized, about 15 years ahmedabad used to be the undisputed city #5 after the four major metros? What happened? I can understand losing one spot to Bangalore, but behind Hyderabad, Pune, Trivandrum, and even Jaipur in terms of new exciting projects?

Hopefully it will awaken soon.
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Old April 5th, 2009, 10:26 PM   #10
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I just realized, about 15 years ahmedabad used to be the undisputed city #5 after the four major metros? What happened? I can understand losing one spot to Bangalore, but behind Hyderabad, Pune, Trivandrum, and even Jaipur in terms of new exciting projects?

Hopefully it will awaken soon.
Indeed, Ahmedabad has slipped in importance in comparison to many cities, most of which is simply down to the lack of any involvement whatsoever in the IT Boom that brought so much investment and money to most of the places you mentioned.

In terms of Infrastructure, Ahmedabad is doing well, and in terms of upcoming projects such as Sabarmati Riverfront, BRTS, GIFT City, Ahmedabad Metro and others, the future is looking pretty bright!

Some support of this view:

Ahmedabad only Indian City to get selected for Shanghai World Expo 2010

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Adding another feather to its cap, Ahmedabad has bagged the honour of being the only city in the country to be selected for showcasing urban best practices at the Shanghai World Expo 2010. The six-month long event will be held in the Chinese city from May to October 2010. The city will get a 3 lakh dollar assistance from the Shanghai Bureau of World Expo for financing the pavilion, spread over 237 sq metres.

Municipal Commissioner I P Gautam told reporters on Saturday that participation in the event will give them a chance to share urban development and financing experiences of other countries, besides enhancing Ahmedabad’s own capacity building in these areas. The brand image of Ahmedabad will also get a boost in the eyes of the world community. A total of 233 countries are participating in the expo, with 45 of them being from the Asian Subcontinent, he added.

The total budget of this exposition, based on the theme of “Better city, better life”, is estimated at 4.19 billion dollars. Nearly seven crore people from across the world are likely to visit the expo, he said.

Being the only Indian city among the 59 selected out of the 87 aspiring cities of the world to take part in the event, it will also give a chance to project achievements not only of the city, but also other ambitious projects in the entire state, including GIFT City, AUDA, GUDA and special economic zones besides Special Investment Regions, Gautam said.

He said performance in the areas of Bus Rapid Transport, Public Private Partnership, issue of tax-free bonds, water supply and drainage network, have been taken into consideration for the selection of Ahmedabad.

The other criteria include town planning schemes, slum upgradation and housing for weaker sections, riverfront development project and e-governance projects, he further said.
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Old May 1st, 2009, 05:10 AM   #11
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I hear a lot of people comment in forums that gujarat is overflowing with development.... someobody if you have any pics... please don't hide them from the rest of us! Post them now!
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Old May 1st, 2009, 09:37 AM   #12
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I hear a lot of people comment in forums that gujarat is overflowing with development.... someobody if you have any pics... please don't hide them from the rest of us! Post them now!

+1

for the love of God... +1 !!!!

I think it really says something about my fellow Gujis as a whole that even small towns in other parts of the country are so much better represented on the net than even 1million+ pop cities in Gujarat. And im talking about sites like Flickr and Picasa etc rather than places like SSC

In the (long) time Ive been part of this forum, following developments in Gujarat, Ive never failed to be amazed by the sheer lack of pics on the net in general, let alone pics of new developments.

The only other option is to turn Gujarat into somewhere snap-happy foreign tourists would want to go to... but we all know how plain absurd that idea is!
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Old May 8th, 2009, 03:34 AM   #13
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+1

for the love of God... +1 !!!!

I think it really says something about my fellow Gujis as a whole that even small towns in other parts of the country are so much better represented on the net than even 1million+ pop cities in Gujarat. And im talking about sites like Flickr and Picasa etc rather than places like SSC

In the (long) time Ive been part of this forum, following developments in Gujarat, Ive never failed to be amazed by the sheer lack of pics on the net in general, let alone pics of new developments.

The only other option is to turn Gujarat into somewhere snap-happy foreign tourists would want to go to... but we all know how plain absurd that idea is!

Thats exactly where we start going wrong when we talk about development. Development is not just a few snazzy buildings and flyovers. That kind of development is just a facade. 10 miles out of Bangalore, Hyderabad or Gurgaon and you would see people living in the most awful conditions. Gujarat has focussed on Human Development parameters like basic healthcare, electricity, education, law and order. Such things are measured in terms of crime rate, sex ratio, literacy rate, infant mortality rates etc and not in terms of swanky glass buildings and wide roads.

Development in Gujarat has never been restricted to one region or a few cities and the affluence has permeated to the remotest of villages, thus reducing urban migration and affiliated issues. I think our country and our politicians would serve well to focus on such issues.
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Old May 9th, 2009, 12:16 AM   #14
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Thats exactly where we start going wrong when we talk about development. Development is not just a few snazzy buildings and flyovers. That kind of development is just a facade. 10 miles out of Bangalore, Hyderabad or Gurgaon and you would see people living in the most awful conditions. Gujarat has focussed on Human Development parameters like basic healthcare, electricity, education, law and order. Such things are measured in terms of crime rate, sex ratio, literacy rate, infant mortality rates etc and not in terms of swanky glass buildings and wide roads.

Development in Gujarat has never been restricted to one region or a few cities and the affluence has permeated to the remotest of villages, thus reducing urban migration and affiliated issues. I think our country and our politicians would serve well to focus on such issues.
Gud reply, People think that few skyscrapers will change the reality. We need skyscrapers too, but at the same time we need 24*7 power supply, support for better primary education, roads and infrastructure, which rn't done my glass facades !! By the way, I am not from Gujarat and I am from Andhra Pradesh and Hyderabad. I am 27 yrs old, and believe me I used to think right from when i was ard 8-9 yrs old, why do we have power cuts ? And to date Hyderabad has power cuts for more than an Hour in PRIME AREA. THink abt how rest of AP is doing.... WHich is the true picture almost anywhere in India.
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Old May 9th, 2009, 11:08 AM   #15
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Thats exactly where we start going wrong when we talk about development. Development is not just a few snazzy buildings and flyovers. That kind of development is just a facade. 10 miles out of Bangalore, Hyderabad or Gurgaon and you would see people living in the most awful conditions. Gujarat has focussed on Human Development parameters like basic healthcare, electricity, education, law and order. Such things are measured in terms of crime rate, sex ratio, literacy rate, infant mortality rates etc and not in terms of swanky glass buildings and wide roads.

Development in Gujarat has never been restricted to one region or a few cities and the affluence has permeated to the remotest of villages, thus reducing urban migration and affiliated issues. I think our country and our politicians would serve well to focus on such issues.
You are absolutely right and i agree wholeheartedly with everything you have said!

On reflection, my point was a minor one at best! Its just that I cant help but think that when it comes to that < 2million pop bracket, a lot of the cities in Gujarat, to me, seem years ahead of the game, theyre just so much better organised and cleaner and just generally seem more affluent... seem more like cities that actually function! And thats on top of the pan-Gujarat norms of power, water, roads etc. Its just a shame that it seems like other people with an interest in development, are unlikely to be able to see this for themselves unless they go to Gujarat for themselves!

Ive got no complaints with the progress that the state has made at all, my initial frustration was just that there is so much out there that deserves to be showcased for ppl who are more development-minded here on SSC.

Im perfectly happy that there is currently nothing like Bandra-Kurla Complex or UB City in Gujarat, because, the way I see it, thats not what stage we are at along our path of progress. Instead we have concentrated on getting a fantastic base that will allow us to push on more efficiently than any other state in the country.

Thats the most exciting thing really, Gujarat is already ahead of the game, but still has some of the biggest projects in India like Kalpasar, DMIC and of course GIFT still to come!

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Old May 9th, 2009, 11:11 AM   #16
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Gud reply, People think that few skyscrapers will change the reality. We need skyscrapers too, but at the same time we need 24*7 power supply, support for better primary education, roads and infrastructure, which rn't done my glass facades !! By the way, I am not from Gujarat and I am from Andhra Pradesh and Hyderabad. I am 27 yrs old, and believe me I used to think right from when i was ard 8-9 yrs old, why do we have power cuts ? And to date Hyderabad has power cuts for more than an Hour in PRIME AREA. THink abt how rest of AP is doing.... WHich is the true picture almost anywhere in India.
Definitely true, considering the bigger picture, a few fancy buildings arent what make a city work!
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Old May 9th, 2009, 09:12 PM   #17
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Gujarat is developed and better than most IT states

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Originally Posted by gradybush View Post
Thats exactly where we start going wrong when we talk about development. Development is not just a few snazzy buildings and flyovers. That kind of development is just a facade. 10 miles out of Bangalore, Hyderabad or Gurgaon and you would see people living in the most awful conditions. Gujarat has focussed on Human Development parameters like basic healthcare, electricity, education, law and order. Such things are measured in terms of crime rate, sex ratio, literacy rate, infant mortality rates etc and not in terms of swanky glass buildings and wide roads.

Development in Gujarat has never been restricted to one region or a few cities and the affluence has permeated to the remotest of villages, thus reducing urban migration and affiliated issues. I think our country and our politicians would serve well to focus on such issues.
True in India the real development based on overall Human development index

1)Kerala
2)Punjab
3)TN
4)Gujarat

In some of the IT cities the developement is just only in one city in the total state and rest all are very average.
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Old May 9th, 2009, 11:54 PM   #18
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True in India the real development based on overall Human development index

1)Kerala
2)Punjab
3)TN
4)Gujarat

In some of the IT cities the developement is just only in one city in the total state and rest all are very average.
Im not sure where you got the list from, but im pretty sure thats not correct.

As far as I remember, states such as Gujarat, Haryana and Punjab (in my opinion the 3 most economically and infrastructurally developed states) are ranked very poorly in terms of HDI

HDI being a "soft" measure, will always identify where emphasis has been placed on education, improving access to healthcare and empowerment of women, these have traditionally been most successfully done by the more socialist state governments rather than somewhere like Gujarat which has been nothing but capitalist for decades.

In terms of more "economic" or "hard" measures areas like physical infrastructure in place, ease/speed of starting a business, average standard of living, average wage, transparency of governence etc, places like Gujarat, Punjab and Haryana would come out top, but def not HDI. In fact, I think these states are amongst the bottom 3 in terms of gender ratio.

Gujarat needs vast improvement on HDI, especially education and gender ratio, these are the two biggest isses that need to be addressed in the state.
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Old May 10th, 2009, 12:29 AM   #19
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It is very difficult to trust any data and statistics now a days especially with voting season around and all kinds of politically motivated "economists" and "experts" and "activists" quoting numbers to suit their claims.

I once read an article by a celebrated activist bemoaning that India's HDI ranking was going down under the NDA. The activist often celebrated as the goddess of truth forgot to mention that the HDI number went up and also that the data was a couple of years old.

Similarly now we have celebrated economists who are paid to come up with "white papers" based on dubious data about "misrule" under the left front. They kind of keep silent when they are questioned about the their data and deflect every criticism to "sampling" errors or "oh we didn't know that this data was old". They even forget to mention the funding source!

Then there are the JNU type activist economists who are in constant weeping mode and finding fault with any thing that is not mixed with their brand of leftism.

The best thing is to not trust any statistics by any organization / activist in India especially the politically motivated ones.

Just look around, feel the pulse and you will know which way the wind is blowing.
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Old September 30th, 2009, 07:32 PM   #20
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Read with open Mind....
---------------------------------
Source AM

Has Ahmedabad really arrived?

Being a mega city is about more than just a BRTS and flyovers; it’s also mindsets and manpower. The fact is that the city simply cannot provide slick, polished professionals


For many years, Ahmedabad has been seen as a city of paradoxes. Modern yet provincial; dry yet with freeflowing booze; peaceful yet home to some of the worst riots; high on Gandhian ethos, yet low on ethics; having widely travelled citizens, yet incredibly regressive in etiquette and public behaviour. Among outsiders, it’s often seen as a bit of a joke with its “snakes in the hole” brand of pronunciations. Today, Ahmedabad is trying very hard to portray itself as a “mega city” (the most commonly misused ‘M’ word after millennium). The question is: has the city really arrived as a global metropolis or is it just kidding itself? Take a closer look.
At the outset, the city has been synonymous with the expression, “ketla taka,” symbolising the calculation of returns on just about everything. Granted that this has contributed to its legendary business acumen; unfortunately, in the near-sighted obsessions with short-term financial gain, the big picture is often lost. The myopic businessman who doesn’t think twice before spendi n g lakhs to do up his office; can’t, for the love of Makwana, see why he should pay a professional more than a few hundred. Subsequently, areas like communication and content writing are often reduced to cut and paste jobs, indicating a disdain for quality and finesse.

The latest buzzword for a while has been “development,” which is reduced to mean roads, flyovers and subways. With a little shrewd eyewash, the locals have been conditioned into believing that a mass rapid transport system along with a few circular route buses and wide roads is enough to catapult the city into the Hong Kong-Shanghai bracket. In essence, those who have been singing paeans about the state of affairs (or the affairs of the state) need to really step out and get some real exposure in the outside world.
Being a mega city is about more than just a BRTS and flyovers; it’s also mindsets and manpower. The inescapable fact the city has never been willing to face is that it simply cannot provide slick, polished professionals. Corporates have long since lamented the difficulty in getting good, marketing manpower. Today, the same thing is observed in the BPO boom. Let’s face it, a Mumbai or Bangalore this ain’t. Subsequently, companies offer to pay less than their counterparts in other states; something the locals can’t digest.

In the end, it all boils down to the city’s weakest link – its grasp of English (or the lack of it). At the end of the day, it’s all about people and communication. Years of step-motherly attitude towards the language, backed by a lifestyle that dictated sitting at the family shop after a basic, rudimentary education have taken their toll and created an irreversible reaction. One needs to only walk into any posh, retail premise to see the glaring gap between the sophisticated product line and the inarticulate sales personnel struggling to communicate it. Further, moving to the western suburbs hasn’t shaken off the ‘pol’ mentality; the city is, at times, still incredibly insular and antiquated in its thinking. The handful of large corporates that repeatedly get feted by the local press are little more than strongholds of pedhi culture, despite their posh campuses and fancy marble flooring.

While other metros have a ‘page 3’ culture, Ahmedabad has page 33!’ With about three and a half resident celebrities (an author, a danseuse, a sportsperson and a cultural czar to boot), the city supplement is hard put to find genuine glam quotient to fill its pages. In retrospect, there is a building named Ocean View, a company named Clit Marketing, a spa that offers a ‘Sona’ bath and a retailer that sells ‘Bed Shit.’ In the final reckoning, Ahmedabad needs to take a hard reality check and focus on what’s really needed, rather than ridiculous propositions like trying to be the country’s mall or multiplex capital – failing which, it’s likely to continue calculating returns (and little else) for a long time to come.

Dinyar T Dastoor
is a freelance writer who travels, conducts workshops and writes spoofs, satires and on anything except so called issues of national interest
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