When the going gets tough, India can get going | india | Hindustan Times
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When the going gets tough, India can get going

india Updated: Dec 31, 2008 01:19 IST

Finally, 2008 is coming to an end. It was a year of tumult, turmoil and terror, a year that brought both -- the best of times and the worst of times.

India's 34-year-old nuclear isolation ends
Chandrayan, India's first mission to moon, makes it, first hard landing on moon in 32 years
India replaces US as world's second largest mobile phone market; 340 million connections and growing
Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan reaches more than 200 million children; Parliament clears Right to Education bill, promising to put every child in school by next year.
Shooter Abhinav Bindra wins India's first ever individual gold at Olympics
Terrorism picks new targets, more than 500 people killed in attacks across the country
Turmoil in stock market, Sensex plunges 53 per cent from record high of 20,827 points on Jan 10 to 9,716 on December 30
Inflation rate surges to 13-year high, economic growth slips below 8 percent from average of 9 per cent in past three years, job cuts get real
Unrest over land acquisition scales new peak, threatens India's industrial progress
Hindu extremists carry out weeks of attacks on Christian communities in tribal Kandhamal district; 40 killed, 4,000 houses burnt;, 16,000 left shelterles

The year started on a high. Ten days into 2008, the BSE Sensex closed at an all-time high. That same day, Ratan Tata unveiled the Nano, the world’s cheapest car. The economy expanded 9 per cent for the third straight year ended March. The India growth story, it seemed, would carry on forever.

Then, the tide turned. High global commodity and crude oil prices began to push the inflation rate to double digits.

Interest rates rose in tandem, and the loan-fuelled consumption boom began to peter out. The tremors from the US financial crisis finally ended the prevailing feel-good factor — by the second half of the year

The downslide only got worse. Economic growth has slipped to 7 per cent or less, and India’s cup of woes, it seemed, was full.

But the Gods who write India’s script had saved the worst for the last. The Mumbai terror attacks on November 26 were the culmination of a year in which terrorism scaled new peaks across the country.

As the year draws to a close, the mood is sombre. The crisis has brought new challenges—this is the first time liberalized India is facing the downside of globalisation. But hope still floats in the air.

The nuclear deal, the successful launch of Chandrayaan-1 and Abhinav Bindra’s gold medal at the Beijing Olympics, among many other examples, underline India’s resilience.

Starting today, Hindustan Times will bring you a series of articles on how to turn adversity into opportunity — about how India can, India did and India will.