Scott Carney, an investigative journalist and WIRED contributor based in Chennai, India, has an amazing story out in this month's issue about mob bosses in Bangalore who are in cahoots with the IT industry:
Since the beginning of India's IT boom Bangalore has been the darling of globalization pundits and and development dreamers. The gist, as Thomas Friedman articulates it, is that the world is flattening so that workers and companies can compete for opportunities from anywhere on the planet. Bangalore, of course, is the shiniest example of globalization's success. However, what has been occluded from the discussion is how the massive investments and capital flows into Bangalore have also contributed to the rise of a powerful and violent mafia. Bangalore's economy is growing much faster than its judicial, regulatory and enforcement systems. The gap has proved to be fertile ground for an unregulated, informal and often criminal systems to fill the space.
In this month's issue of WIRED magazine I wrote a story called "The Godfather of Bangalore" where I showed how underworld dons have taken control of many of the city's land dealings by providing an alternate judicial system to mediate land claims. There is no easy way to solve a land dispute in India. Inherited parcels are often contested by dozens of semi-legitimate claimants and court cases routinely take 15 years to come to a judgment. But the pace of land development is relentless, and companies and wealthy individuals don't want to wait for the wheels of justice to finish, they want immediate resolutions.