Expats in India concerned with safety

 http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asiapacific/expats-in-india-concerned/700272.html

 India's expat appeal took a major blow with the violent incidents that have been highlighted by the media ever since the gang rape of a young woman on a bus in December. Consequently, India is no longer perceived as a safe environment for expats.

NEW DELHI: India's expatriate population experienced uninterrupted growth until the last quarter of 2012. That was when the country's expat appeal took a major blow with the violent incidents that have been highlighted by the media ever since the gang rape of a young woman on a bus. 

Consequently, India is no longer perceived as a safe environment for expats.French resident Anne Laure has been in India since 2005. 

Working as a full-time teacher at Delhi's leading language school, Ms Laure is in no hurry to return to her homeland. But security is a major concern for her in Delhi.

Ms Laure said: "Well, I guess clearly, six months back, (there) was the gang-rape of December that has a big impact. I am sure of it. Also for expats to choose, India is not the easiest place to go to. I mean mostly expats are from Western countries and others of course, so they would rather if they don't want risk, would go to safer places. Furthermore, most expats have a family with them, either it’s a lady or they have children. They care for their safety... It's a big issue over here." 

While Ms Laure has been in Delhi long enough to experience the good aspects of life as well as the bad, most foreign nationals will be very wary of security for themselves and their families.

Analysts believe expats have been put off by negative events like terrorist attacks and sexual violence against women that have received “excessive” media attention in the past. 

Sunil Goel, managing director at Global Hunt Recruitment Services, said: "Any incident which happens, either it's a blast or a rape, or any such incidents, people who don't belong to this part of the world get scared. So it's more of communication, but if you look at the ground reality, we sometimes have to do a little effort to convince people that ground realities are completely different."

According to the industry numbers, over 40,000 expats are presently working in different industries across the country. But a survey by Myhiringclub.com, a recruitment consultancy platform, indicates that the expat hiring pattern will decline by at least 15 to 20 per cent in 2013. Analysts however are looking at the situation over the longer term and claim that it is just a matter of time before the numbers start to increase again as expats cannot afford to ignore the opportunities that India has to offer. 

Mr Goel said: "Anywhere in the world, if you compare this volume they will not get it. Volume means complexity of the business and they get to learn the complexity of the business in India, which can be used anywhere else in the world. That's the advantage what expats can get, once they come and work in this market."