United Kingdom (.uk)
Mark Tully, 79, Journalist and author in Delhi
In India: 51 years
India, of course, has changed vastly since the time I first came here. It’s very different for foreigners now than then, when there were so few of us. Life was much harder, there was shortage of everything, of food, you even had to get permission to run the ACs. Now consumerism has got hold of the middle class, that was not there in the earlier days. I think it’s too early to say if there will be any fundamental changes with a new regime in power. Indira Gandhi too promised change through a form of extreme socialism. There is quite a lot of public presence for the Hindutva proponents but again this may not last. The media might get bored of it. Like the economist Jagdish Bhagwati just said, these elements will have to be kept in check. But I don’t find any xenophobia or suspicion towards the foreigner at all. I am at Jaipur right now for the literature festival and all I encounter is warmth and appreciation. The visa system may get some foreign journos a bit worried, but it is no more than that.