India’s Silicon Valley seems to have troubles that never stop – if it’s not traffic, it’s the fear of an impending meltdown. This week, in a city known for its mild climate, a violent strike is burning the city and its many startups.
— BengaluruCityPolice (@BlrCityPolice) September 12, 2016
A dispute over water-sharing with a neighboring state spun out of control on Monday bringing the tech city to a halt. In turn, the government imposed a curfew that bans unlawful assembly armed with deadly weapons.
The city is no stranger to strikes with different political groups or factions making various demands of the government, but the violence this time has left Bangaloreans rattled.
— Abhijit Karande (@abhiasks) September 12, 2016
— Deepa Balakrishnan (@deepab18) September 9, 2016
While the police are working to keep tension at bay, techies in the city are left in a lurch as startups have been forced to suspend operations fearing violence.
@flipkartsupport services will be unavailable today due to disturbances in Bangalore. Do reach us on 1800 420 1111. Kindly bear with us.
— Flipkart (@Flipkart) September 12, 2016
When I got a taxi from the airport early Monday, Uber worked perfectly. The Ola stand at the airport was also teeming with pickups and drops. Things however quickly spun out out of control as the media reported on violence across the city, and tech firms and startups closed offices and sent employees home.
Uber and Ola are still working in the city, but cab availability is sparse. Many others, however, have been forced to shut shop fearing violence or attacks on their employees. This is especially troubling in a city that runs on startups and powers its young population through various apps.
While most startups have not taken an official stance on suspending duties, food delivery apps like Zomato Order and Swiggy, grocery delivery startups BigBasket and Grofers, and many others were offline saying they had suspended services due to disturbances in the city.
The companies have so far not responded to emails asking for further details.
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