Bangalore, India, October 2019
A surprising and multifaceted city. On the one hand, it is a modern city but this modernity shares a world still belonging to the past. I would not talk about dirt or poverty. I do this on every trip to the Philippines and remember that a very dense population does not make that easy. I knew that cows could walk freely in India, but I saw that in small villages. But no, in Bangalore, cows walk around as they wish, taking advantage of trash bags to eat. Cars pass by to avoid them.
Walking the streets of Bangalore is really intoxicating. I would not mention the constant sound of horns, which serve a bit of everything for drivers. I would speak especially of the smells of the streets, smells of incense when one walks. A city to discover by walk.
The toponym Bangalore is the anglicized version of Bengaḷūru, the name of the city in Kannada. The oldest reference to the name Bengaḷūru is an inscription engraved in a vai gallu of the Xth century (in Hindi,ು, literally a “hero’s stone” touting the merits of a warrior). In this inscription found in Begur, Bengaluru is described as the location of a battle that took place in 890.
It was built around a fort built in 1537. It was one of the seats of the British administration from 1831 to 1881, when it was returned to the Maharaja of Mysore. Bangalore is historically a military garrison town during the British Raj, then preferred to Mysore and Chennai due to its small population.
From the 90s, Bangalore became the most important Indian pole in information technology, with a major upgrade. It has become a major university, scientific and economic center. Agglomeration is considered the Indian “Silicon Valley” and the example of a world-class hub of expertise.
Thanks to Saiprasad for his kindness and help during this stay. Thanks also to Akshata, her husband and son for their invitation to Divali.
A little video:
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