BOOM town

In­dia’s Mil­len­nium City has seen a me­te­oric rise from a clus­ter of vil­lages to a thriv­ing me­trop­o­lis

Business Traveler (USA) - - DES­TI­NA­TIONS - By Akanksha Maker

In­dia’s Na­tional Cap­i­tal Re­gion, the huge met­ro­pol­i­tan area that en­com­passes the city of New Delhi, stretches spoke-like into the sur­round­ing states as a bevy of satel­lite cities. One of the most im­por­tant of these is sit­u­ated in the state of Haryana.

Once no more than a bar­ren stretch of vil­lages, to­day Gur­gaon is home to more than 250 of In­dia’s For­tune 500 com­pa­nies, 26 lux­ury malls boast­ing out­lets for the likes of Chanel and Louis Vuit­ton, lush golf courses, premium car show­rooms and up­mar­ket recre­ation venues.

Gur­gaon has been nick­named In­dia’s “Mil­len­nium City,”re­flect­ing the de­vel­op­ment the coun­try as­pires to. How­ever, in an at­tempt to bring the cit­i­zens of Gur­gaon closer to their her­itage, the state gov­ern­ment ac­cepted a re­quest in April for its name to be changed to Gu­ru­gram (“guru”trans­lates as“teacher” and“gram”to“vil­lage”).

Be­fore In­dia gained in­de­pen­dence in 1947, only a few hun­dred peo­ple lived in Gur­gaon’s found­ing com­mu­ni­ties. By 1971 the pop­u­la­tion reached 57,000. To­day, the city is home to more than 1.8 mil­lion peo­ple and has an im­pres­sive per capita an­nual in­come of Rs 446,000 ($6,670), com­pared with the na­tional av­er­age of Rs 88,533 ($1,325).

Although com­monly as­so­ci­ated with Delhi, Gur­gaon also has bor­ders with the states of Ra­jasthan and Ut­tar Pradesh, mak­ing its lo­ca­tion highly strate­gic for busi­ness. From Indira Gandhi In­ter­na­tional air­port, a 40-minute drive along Na­tional High­way 8 brings you to the cen­ter of the city. Its prox­im­ity to the cap­i­tal – and the coun­try’s pol­i­cy­mak­ers – proved to be very ap­peal­ing to the vi­sion­ar­ies and in­vestors who saw the area’s im­mense po­ten­tial.

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