26 September, 2020

East Is East Again

The CWG mess has given the India rising story a few nasty knocks

East Is East Again

To Commonwealth Games organising committee chairman Suresh Kalmadi goes the dubious credit of taking the fizz out of the buzz India had been making worldwide. Over the last decade, India’s astonishing economic growth, its enviable IT skills, its eclectic human resources and its seductive soft power (embodied by Bollywood) had many a foreigner arch their eyebrows in admiration. The grim stereotype of India as the land of snake-charmers segued into the exuberant image of an emerging power. “Mera Bharat mahaan,” was the sentiment as we argued about the new pecking order in the global power hierarchy.

But today, those arched eyebrows, they exude a veiled contempt. “I told you so,” they mutter in derision as they read stories about the mess the CWG has become. This overnight attitudinal change towards India has had the zealous Indian slinking into the corner. Neha Garg, IT professional with a London-based software giant, finds her morning meetings have become increasingly embarrassing affairs...



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