Bangalore hopes 2009 will bring economic revival, security

January 1st, 2009 - 4:26 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, Jan 1 (IANS) This city welcomed the New Year with sombre celebrations and calls for better security measures as 2008 saw a string of terror attacks across the country. It also prayed for quick revival of a sluggish economy which has hit India’s IT capital hard.Most Bangaloreans kept away from hard partying and bingeing, otherwise a ritual in the city. Even five-star and luxury hotels had a quiet affair.

“We had arranged for a small party where a few guests enjoyed,” an official of Leela Palace told IANS.

City police took elaborate steps to ensure that no untoward incident happened at youth hangouts like M.G. Road and the adjoining Brigade Road in the central business district.

Denizens of the city were seen standing in long queues at various religious places to offer their prayers early Thursday morning.

“This is no time for celebration. I had my dinner at home with family and stayed away from partying. Security is a major concern for all of us, especially after the Mumbai terror attack,” said rights activist Arman Ali.

“Moreover, the city in July had a first hand experience of a series of bomb blasts. Being the IT hub, Bangalore is a potential terror target.”

Bangalore was hit by a series of eight low intensity blasts July 15 last year. The explosions left one woman dead and 15 people injured.

Most Bangaloreans want 2009 to bring some sort of respite from the global economic meltdown, which has impacted various sectors across Karnataka.

“From IT to textile, all businesses in the state have been hugely hit by global economic slowdown. Hope the economy bounces back and brings some cheer to us. A number of IT and textile employees have already lost their jobs across Karnataka, especially in Bangalore,” said IT professional Namdev K.

According to an estimate, around 10,000 IT professionals and 500,000 textile employees have lost their jobs across the country in September-Decemeber 2008.

“Hope the year brings us cheer in terms of making the city more secure and revival of the economy,” said school teacher Damyanti Sharma.

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