Sunday, March 11, 2007

how i gentrified ghaziabad

A few months ago I ran across an advertisement for Ghaziabad that was stamped with the bold claim, "Newsweek rates Ghaziabad as the sixth most dynamic city in the world!" Knowing myself in a way responsible, I wondered if this campaign would continue. Today I ran across the same ad. Oops.

To be honest, I had serious reservations about writing of Ghaziabad as India's fastest-growing city, based on UN figures. For one thing, the UN numbers appeared to be generated from a synthesis of Indian figures, yet the local experts were somewhat stunned to learn of the once crime-ridden city's supposed "dynamism." It also seemed a bit absurd to focus on population growth as such an important measure, since in India anyway that often means more poverty rather than a rapid climb up the economic ladder. Gurgaon and Noida, though they were growing faster by population, as well as economic indicators, were too small for our ceiling (I forget what it was offhand). But why not Chennai, I suggested? At the time, it, too, was experiencing phenomenal growth, though not by population, with factories arising seemingly overnight, property prices doubling year-on-year, and so on. Nope. We had to go with the UN. Why? Well, we needed a measurement that could be applied to all the countries that we'd feature.

So, owners of property in Ghaziabad, rejoice. You've got yourself a genuine dynamo. Hell, after reading what I'd written, even I contemplated picking up a luxury flat on one of the construction sites in Indirapuram.


Abi said...

after reading what I'd written, even I contemplated picking up a luxury flat on one of the construction sites in Indirapuram.

If you had picked up that flat before writing that article, that would have been the ultimate in 'acting on insider information'!

Anonymous said...

You kingmaker, you! :)

continued-contemplation said...

But what is the quality of life in towns like Ghaziabad, isn't the crime rate pretty high? Still, I would be keen to know more about the demographics of the people moving there. Also, I guess if one can afford living in luxury gated communities, every place is the same.

Govar said...

It maybe the most dynamic city in India, but you still can't live there since Ghaziabad is still in Uttar Pradesh. How ironic.

Anonymous said...

I don't know on which parameters UN has declared Ghaziabad as the sixth most dynamic city. But the life here is pathetic. People working in Delhi and Noida are moving here since they do not have any other option. The dynamism by construction industry around Indirapuram making the working professionals of Delhi and Noida to move here. As Govar pointed out its still in Uttarpradesh and crime rate is too high. Public transportation is very pathetic. You have age old busses run by private players and six seater autos.