Saturday, September 30, 2006

india: more good news, more bad news

India continues to present an astonishing mix of good news about the present and worries about the intermediate- and long-term future. The contradiction was captured by a recent edition of the New York Times, which ran a story stating that the Indian economy grew at an incredible 8.9 percent annual rate in the second quarter of 2006, almost as fast as China and way ahead of just about anyone else in the world. The story also reported that manufacturing in India was growing at an even higher (11.3) percent pace and that these were "intoxicating" times as witnessed the exuberant attitudes and luxury goods on display in Mumbai, Delhi, and other Indian cities. The down side? A story the same day reported that a shortage of fresh water was forcing even some middle class Indians to turn to forage for water in dirty ponds or order it from delivery trucks. One woman suggested that a large part of her day was spent managing the water supply. Somewhere between these two stories, and the country's ability to reconcile them, lies the future of India.


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