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Saturday, April 11, 2009

Today being a Saturday, I thought of installing a security system on my car. So I went to Ramkote, which is the hub for car accessories in Hyderabad. After touching a couple of stores, with more or less similar offerings, we (my bro tagged along) settled on one shop and made the purchase. The store owner, Ghouse, said it'd take 30 minutes. So we left the car at the shop and went to have lunch at the fabulous Bahar restaurant a couple of minutes away.

After returning from lunch, we went back to the shop and they had it all ready. We tested the system out and it worked fine. I needed to replace the carhorn, so I got them to work on that. In that time, Ghouse and I started chatting and he was telling me about his business. Being wholesalers and all, they supplied to a few shops in and around Hyderabad. Then he mentioned that business wasn't so good these days.

'Why?' I asked. And I was surprised to hear that it was because of the bank failure in the international market. Needless to say, I was interested. 'How?'

Well, since the financial downturn (he didn't exactly use this term) banks in India are reluctant to offer car loans to salaried people working for private firms or in the IT sector. As a consequence, car sales are down, which in turn means car accessories don't sell either. I was surprised and it struck me how truly inter-connected we are. A financial catastrophe in the United States, is affecting the business of some small accessory shop owner in Ramkote, Hyderabad.

Where do you think all of this will end?

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