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Rains in India

In response to a mail i was sent (as part of a grp) on self-pity about herself when her husband had to stay in Bombay airport for a night because of the rains. Maybe im prejudiced, maybe Im not looking at the complete picture. Maybe it wasnt self-pity. But thats how it seemed to me on a rainy monday morning, considering from whom the mail was recieved.

To decrease length of my entry, Ive added LJ Cut, and so you can


Hi there,

It is indeed a bad time for Bombay. A city hyped so much has to face some realities. at least bombay is getting the attention and reinforcements needed. Think about being stranded in the not-so-famous towns of Baroda and Surat, and Goodness knows what other village of Gujarat. Ahmedabad though unharmed was also effected with the rain water. I know of people sitting in a train on their way to Bombay, stranded in those overnight, no pantry car trains for days on end. Of men, women who would do anythign to save their children fromt he floods.
Water so high that you could not see anything except rooftops. 14ft (unofficial figure) of water in desert-kind land is no joke. Water so high that army workers got washed away and are missing...considered dead - these are ppl who have re-inforcements and have special training to face such cricumstances. Air force has also been of limited help. Military has been spending day and night incessantly to help. I know men who have not eaten or slept for days continuously in their valiant effort to help the ppl.

River which is totally dry though the year, a standing joke of a river, is overflowing. People here are just recovering fromt he after effects of riots, earthquake, and now this. All pharmaceutical companies here have been hit hard, what with most of them having main offices/plants in Gujarat.Not to mention other industries.

Bombay has been no better, with ppl stranded in offices. Those venturing home have had to walk through water neck deep. And to top it all, no one can beat the Indian Male. There is eve teasing in such circumstances. Imagine wading through neck deep water because you cant turn back, at 10 in the night when you get eve teased by a groups of men in a city like bombay where no one will ever come to help you? Then there are the sordid tales of no food. Hotels have run out of food. Surviving for a few days with only a packet of biscuits, when you can very well afford good food anytime. No drinking water, because all drainage systems are infected. Infact, so much so that because of most ground control being situated in Bombay, flights from Ahmedabad and delhi have also been effected. (Aside - talk about the consequences of putting all eggs in one basket)

Its been a bad monsoon for India in all. One of the highest capital earning states of India gets effeted by record floods. The 'nerve center' of the country (Bombay) gets record rainfall, and one of the few oil rigs catches fire. Ayodhya gets a terrorist attack, Gurgaon the upcoming office city of India gets bad international press with riots and lathi charge between police and Honda workers. Remember also the Tsunami, and the latest earthquake in Nicobar.
Small incidents which can add up to big changes.

My clients cannot reach me, their visits cancelled as have their flights. Who would like to do business with a company which is constantly riddled with natural disaster, apart from the famous notorious governement and working conditions (re-inforced by above)? The pros may outweight the cons for the moment, but for how long? What do we need to change in this ideal country of ours? Us? Natural disasters are somethign that we cant do much about. What about the man-made discrepancies.


"I was put on this earth to accomplish a certain number of things. Right now I'm so far behind I will never die."

Update: 4th August 2005: Mail from the Times of India, they might publish the letter. Update awaited by me.

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( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
1st Aug, 2005 10:10 (UTC)
Very right. I think the reply is well thought out, though i am not aware of the contents of the original, and hence cannot get judgemental. but i tend to agree with your last statement that we need to dig deep to overcome our human fallibilities as we are helpless in the face of nature. floods cannot be averted, but if only we set aside greed things will be better. Look at the series of things that have led to mumbai's downfall, top most among them is greed, including building vis a vis reclamation of the sea. in addition poor anticipation with the sound knowledge that mumbai is the first point of contact for the southwest monsoon. Town planners should have known better than not to plan a storm drain system. Look at the landslides in andheri, what do u expect when u go and build on the hillocks and then uproot trees and deforest like people demented.
1000 ppl died in maharashtra alone,another 500 in gujarat 200 in HP and 100 in andhra in these rains, whats waiting at an airport when 9 yr old kids get trampled underfoot in a stampede caused by a rumour that a tsunami is going to hit mumbai?, when barely 5 year olds die in a school in a wall collapse?. Again this is not to belittle anybody's problem but as u said its a matter of perspective. I just thought i l add my bit to it.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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