12/06/2008

Upper class in India reacts to terrorist attack

The NY Times has this (take it as always with a grain of salt). People are upset that the government didn't protect them from the attack, but there seems to be little appreciation about how many vulnerable targets there are in India and how hard it is to put enough troops and police around to protect everyone.

MUMBAI, India — Last Wednesday, an extraordinary public interest lawsuit was filed in this city’s highest court. It charged that the government had lagged in its constitutional duty to protect its citizens’ right to life, and it pressed the state to modernize and upgrade its security forces.

The lawsuit was striking mainly for the people behind it: investment bankers, corporate lawyers and representatives of some of India’s largest companies, which have their headquarters here in the country’s financial capital, also known as Bombay. The Bombay Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the city’s largest business association, joined as a petitioner. It was the first time it had lent its name to litigation in the public interest.

The three-day siege of Mumbai, which ended a week ago, was a watershed for India’s prosperous classes. It prompted many of those who live in their own private Indias, largely insulated from the country’s dysfunction, to demand a vital public service: safety.

Since the attacks, which killed 163 people, plus nine gunmen, there has been an outpouring of anger from unlikely quarters. On Wednesday, tens of thousands of urban, English-speaking, tank-top-wearing citizens stormed the Gateway of India, a famed waterfront monument, venting anger at their elected leaders. There were similar protests in the capital, New Delhi, and the southern technology hubs, Bangalore and Hyderabad. All were organized spontaneously, with word spread through text messages and Facebook pages. . . .

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1 Comments:

Blogger David Hillary said...

Hmm... well given that litigation takes substantially longer than waiting for the police to arrive after a person has been victimised, I'd figure that this gesture is even less effective.

By the way I've also tagged you (see http://davidhillary.blogspot.com/2008/11/tagged-game.html)

Thanks

12/07/2008 12:47 AM  

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