02 Jan '12, 3pm

Pankaj Mishra on the shattered illusion of India's economy:

A few years ago, one of India's private airlines started operating a flight from Delhi to the Himalayan city of Shimla, a few miles from my village. The brisk descent in a small turboprop aircraft is not for those with a fear of flying. The runway on a table-top mountain seemed particularly short last week, when the plane, breaking free of the fog over Delhi, came down to a wintry Himalayan mist. Still, cutting down journey times to a fraction, the flight seemed too good to be true; and, having endured many very long drives up and down winding mountain roads, I became one of its keenest and more regular customers. The airline was subsequently bought by Kingfisher Airlines, one of the New India's iconic corporate brands. Owned by Mr Vijay Mallya, a man fond of horse racing and swimsuit calendars, Kingfisher simply ran out of money earlier this year, reflecting more broadly ...

Full article: http://www.todayonline.com/Commentary/EDC120102-0000006/T...

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