The tourism board of India got the tagline absolutely right – Incredible India – a land of wonderous, mind-boggling inefficiencies, lack of logic and special culture. Ain’t no place on Earth like India.
Upon arrival to the capital of West Bengal, your car drives through newly laid highways rough at the edges. There are hardly any stop lights at the junctions, you’ll be lucky to spot a single street sign, and your driver will be swerving past ridiculous obstacles laid down by the traffic police.
The billboards promote daily necessities, clothings for the aspiring middle class, budget smartphones designed for the Indian market. Most foreign brands are luxury items, prices kept high by steep import taxes.
Infrastructure has improved much in the past few years, but still sorely lacking compared to most other developing countries. China, SouthEast Asia all have less congested roads and better conditions. A messy democracy makes it tough for effective change to take place. One could almost call it demo-crazy.
A history of British colonialism has left behind some wonderful architecture. Unfortunately much of it lies in neglect, overcome by the dirty streets and lack of upkeep.