India's Cybercity, Bangalore
India is a country to which many countries now look to with respect because of its IT-expertise. For many years, India has had close contact with the computer industry in the USA and it is no doubt thanks to this that India has established a firm and independent grip on its IT industry and software business.
Headhunters from all over the world visit Bangalore. They start up their own businesses here, looking for cheap labour. An Indian worker earns only half or one third as much as a British employee and if the employer is not satisfied, he can just be sacked! A lot of people in the Western world believe that their telephone enquiries are being answered by someone in their own country. A new trend now, however, is for large western corporations to outsource these services to Indian companies. Indian staff use Western names like Peter and Cordelia and are trained to speak the languages and dialects of the country in question. In addition, they also learn basic general information about the country, for instance regarding the weather, food, football matches, the Royal family, etc.
Tasks and Activities
- Why are headhunters interested in Bangalore?
- How are Indian call centre workers trained to deal with clients in the West?
- What is the literal meaning of "to be sacked"?
Letter to the Editor
With the increase in Indian women working in IT, traditional gender roles have started to change more rapidly than before. A lot of young women have adopted the dress and behaviours of their western counterparts. This change is not appreciated by everyone, however, and some women now experience negative comments and even harassment because of their choices.
Taking on the persona of a young person in Bangalore, write a letter to the editor of a local newspaper in which you defend women's right to dress and behave as they like.
See How to Write a Letter to the Editor
Listen to this interview with an Indian IT Worker.