Services Lacking in the Servants' Slums

Upwardly-mobile city dwellers in India are heavily reliant on the neighboring slums that house their servants. But many public services are lacking beyond the walls of the affluent developments.

"Gurgaon, a largely privately developed city and a metonym for Indian ambition, has seen a building frenzy to satisfy people like the Chands. The city's population has nearly doubled in the last six years, to 1.5 million. The skyline is dotted with scaffolds. Glass towers house companies like American Express and Accenture. Not far from Hamilton Court, Burberry and BMW have set up shop."

"State services, meanwhile, have barely kept pace. The city has neither enough water nor electricity for the population. There is no sewage treatment plant yet; construction is scheduled to begin this year."

"India has long lived with such inequities, and though a Maoist rebellion is building in the countryside, the nation has for the most part skirted social upheaval through a critical safety valve: giving the poor their chance to vent at the ballot box. Indeed, four years ago, voters threw out the incumbent government, with its "India Shining" slogan, because it was perceived to have neglected the poor."

Full Story: Inside Gate, India’s Good Life; Outside, the Servants’ Slums

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