Eight* reasons to stay away from Bangalore

Update: 10 August 2010

I still cannot believe that this post gets so many hits and views. Some people come here after searching for “I hate Bangalore” in Google. Fair play to them, they’re entitled to their likes and dislikes, but I don’t hate Bangalore. In fact, I love living here, which is one reason why I’ve been here since 2001 (9 years, at the time of this update, if you’re counting).

This post was meant to be light-hearted and I’ll encourage people to take it that way. As an aside, if you point out stuff that you think is wrong about a city, it hardly means that you hate that city.

You may also be interested in reading Why Bangalore Still Rocks, a post that doesn’t get read as much as this one does.

end of update

Pre-Script: I wrote the following piece as a sample for a magazine (for the 2006 New Year) and sent to the editor. No contact after that. So, I wanted to share this powerful piece of writing with you.

As 2006 draws near is nearing its fourth month, magazines, newspapers, websites, and blogs will publish have published “best of 2005” lists, so we’re doing something different.

We targeted the Silicon Valley of India and after detailed research [1], came up with eight reasons why you should not move there. The reasons are arranged in the order in which you read them.

1. One way or no way — Bangalore has so many one-ways that many people from other cities are still wandering about on the roads, unable to figure out where to go. Some of them are men who refuse to ask for directions.

2. Traffic — If the one-ways (Lillee) don’t get you, the traffic (Thommo) will. It’s so bad that people are spending more time at the office to escape traffic jams. According to well-placed sources [2], this has led to an increase in affairs at work and high Internet bills.

3. Sneeze city — Bangalore is one of the worst places to live in if you have any kind of allergies. And, if you don’t have allergies, you’ll get them here. There’s a reason that there are so many doctors and even more pharmacies in Bangalore.

4. A simple life — If you’re coming to Bangalore for the nightlife, don’t bother. Pubs close somewhere around 11:30 pm. Also, there’s really no time to party, because by the time you reach the pub after picking up friends, it’s already closing time. So, people sit at home and watch TV–the TRP ratings of all shows are up in Bangalore.

5. Lots of money for value — Bangalore is an expensive place. Rents are high, buying an apartment is even more expensive and if you do buy one, your panoramic view will be of a village approximately ten kilometres from Bangalore. Then, the prices are so high that if you ask a Bangalorean on the street where the vegetable shop is, he’ll respond, “Vegetable? What’s that?”. [3]

6. King Kong on IMAX? Forget it — What self-respecting person would choose to live in a city that has no IMAX theatre? Yup, we don’t have one in the IT capital of India. To add insult to Hyderabadi biryani, people in Hyderabad have been watching IMAX movies for over two years.

7. No city airport — Bangalore does have an airport, but the airport belongs to HAL. In keeping with the city’s nature, there are luggage trolley jams inside the airport building. The proposed international airport is about a half-a-day drive from Bangalore and has had starting trouble. Recently, a high-profile IT person quit the airport board because an ex-prime minister wouldn’t buy stocks in his company. Or something like that.

8. McDonald’s, KFC, Pizza Hut, but no US visa — You can get a McAloo Tikki in Bangalore but if you want a visa, you’ll have to go to Chennai. Or Hyderabad, which is going to get the new visa processing centre. The US consulate picked them–what does that tell you? Hyderabad also added a KFC recently and it’s a matter of time before they get a McDonald’s.

All this should convince you to stay away from Bangalore. Go to Hyderabad, Pune, or Cuba (the new outsourcing destination) instead.

Bangalore’s too crowded anyway.

* — Aren’t you sick of those top ten lists?
[1] — Reading Times of India Bangalore every day.
[2} — The sources were “placed” in the article.
[3] — This could also happen because he doesn’t know English. (Some errors may have occurred during translation from Kannada.)

57 thoughts on “Eight* reasons to stay away from Bangalore

  1. Stop Whining like spineless wimps and do something about it! Traffic here in Atlanta is far worse, but people are willing to find solutions. We’re the “anna – sambar” generation – loudly complaining, but doing nothing. Bangalore will never move forward until the citizens take the initiative to get it in order. First step, stop throwing garbage on the streets…..then the rest will follow.

  2. Who is this person.Anyway the 8th reason is interesting , It gives me a feeling that people like you in India are moving like tribes or Nomads …wanderering for your bread in Bangalore or cuba ….anyway its simple boss If you have 25 unexpected guests overnight at u r home …the situation would be chaotic …the same has happend here …..Theirs so much comparision b/w Hyd and bangalore …. But If biryani and Imax is the difference….. no comments .

  3. Can u pls throw some light on who n where u come from..cos we,very few true blue bangaloreans left in this city want to check ur credentials first before makin any comments on the CRAP u have written…

    (p.s. one honest advice…Dont laugh at others …for all u know the world might be laughing at u…)

  4. Akshay and Arjun — If you read closely, you’ll see that the tags (categories) for this post are Bangalore and Humour. So it’s a light-hearted post and is meant to be taken that way.

  5. The primary reason for any developed place /country is its people…People with a good sense of belongingness both emotionaly and practically… our 8 reasoned guy is just distrubed with some facts and figures ….He is talking about crap like Imax , Biryani ….what about the 48 degree summer …social evolvement …people being receptive ..religion riots …lingual problems ?? which he has no idea …. People like me and the gentleman with the above comments … Dont simply seat on top of Narayan murthy or Nandan Nilakanni’s provided Plush workstation and comment “I gota job paying me a 20 – 30 grant a month but cant bear the traffic …and what do I do lets make freaky move to chennai or Hyd”….The fact is we aint’t no Nomads ..we have a serious belongingness to this place…and would like to be a part of its constructive process in mapping this place as a world class city…

  6. Akshay — Thanks for your thoughts but as I said earlier, it’s supposed to be a funny post, so don’t take it so seriously. And, for the record, I don’t have a job paying me 20 or 30 grand.

  7. Dude, that was hilarious. :-)
    Anyway, I realized that you can start a war by mentioning one of the three things – Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Bangalore.

  8. How very true !!.. but i wonder how could u miss the auto fellas ? a friend of mine has a theory about auto meters in blore … there are 3 kinds, regular, pushpak and super pushpak. The regular ones are prolly

  9. Man, you bet – the article was hilarious. I could recollect atleast 5 situations for each point that you have mentioned, when I have been in the same state, or have known someone directly who has been put through the experience (You got it, for the US Visa thingy). And as for driving in BLR, I guess you already know my opinion. And as “jazz” says, how could you miss the auto fellas? Maybe you got to write a complete article and dedicate it to them.
    As as for the war, I don’t think you started it. You just penned down your opinion, isn’t it?

  10. Jazz — You’re right, I did miss them out. But, auto drivers would’ve been a whole other topic and I don’t think a part of a post would’ve been enough. :-)

    Niranj — I will write about them sometime.

  11. Be careful when writing about Auto Fellas. I’m worried one of them might be reading your post, and would leave some entertaining comments, and would probably carry out a credential check on you as well, and worse, blacklist you. As such, most of them won’t go on hire. By writing about them, you are slimming down the chances of you getting into one. :-)


  13. Loads of stuff you mentioned here…I agree that its sooo true-at present. Its very expensive here, rents are high. But with loads of people storming into this city leaving their’s then ppl thought to make some money. At least that will stop them flooding us. As for as pubbing, night life 11.30 closure is concerned- it started just from a year ago. Before that bangalore was a pub city. Agreed its bad now and disappointing but hope it will change in near future. No IMAX in bangalore – hmm…..Well plan was there in 2002 to build it (after i saw in its website) but its the govt lazy “no-response” on land made it delays. So far now, nearly 3 or 4 times the location has been changed to build it. Now its cited and the buildings are cleared and construction to start soon. No city airport? Well we were happy with the existed airport till 2 years back. When whole loads of ppl jumping here, international airport is under construction now. As far as no US visa here is concerned, u cant blame bangalore for it. I read in TOI that it was US embassy which decided against basing itself here. As far as traffic goes, i completely agree with u but i also agree with akshay who said “anyway its simple boss If you have 25 unexpected guests overnight at u r home …the situation would be chaotic …the same has happend here …..”

  14. Bangalore has Ramaswamy Palya near Kammanahalli where the entire area is dusty and dirty due to the unpaved roads, parking rules are willfully flouted and personal and environmental hygiene is at its lowest level. On one side, heaps of dirt and sand dug up from the storm water drains have been dumped on the sides of the road. On another side, construction material has been dumped leaving no space for people to walk or drive safely. (This place is the best site for scientists to study air pollution).

    Apart from the general level of lawlessness in this area, a good number of unhygienic teashops and meat stalls remain an eye sore to the public. Respiratory disorders are the norm here. Municipal water supply is twice a week and those who are unlucky have to bear up with the hard water drilled from borewells. The re-construction of the Indian oil flyover has created further mayhem in this area. There is no bus service in the stretch from Maruti Seva Nagar to Kammanahalli and Kalyan Nagar as it has been diverted through Banaswadi Main Road. Apart from the dirty dust, people have to take a roundabout route to go to Indiranagar, and Maruti Seva Nagar. Autorickshaw drivers are making hay while the residents struggle to cope with the mess this area is in.

  15. Sounds like paradise, if pollution and mayhem. I wonder if it would help if you tried to file an RTI petition or something. I’ve never filed one but from the news reports, etc., I gather that they’re effective.

  16. The article is pretty good. I too was in Bangalore until recently. Believe me, the moment you land in Hyderabad after living Bangalore for a while, it actually feels like you are in a foreign country. Bangalore is disgustingly polluted, has dust flying all around, the traffic is even worse than Kolkatta.
    Also, another good reason to leave Bangalore is, in several areas people only speak in Kannada, which doesn’t sound anything like Tamil, Telugu, or Malayalam, so even the south indians have to speak in Hindi there. Unfortunately, the Kannadigas seem to hate Hindi as much as they hate Tamil. Bangalore is not at all cosmopolitan, it is very much a Kannadiga town, where people have a very insular mentality. Hyderabad, in sharp contrast, is much more cosmopolitan. Anyone can manage by just speaking hindi in Hyderabad and need not learn telugu at all. Another plus point is that, Hyderabadis dont discriminate between south and north indians. All in all, the food is better, the living conditions are better, the language is better, the trafiic is way better, and there is less pollution in Hyderabad. The only minus point is the hot weather, but that can be tolerated.

  17. Yes I completely agree with Bambal khan. We can add one more reason Monterio..to make it as **Nine reasons **. Regional/linguistic fanatic group.
    How can you forget Kannad rakshana vedhike.. A fanatic group which enforce Kannada and their motto is to make every one “Eat Kannad,Sleep Kannad”. The people are so broadminded that even the bus board is only in Kannad (I saw some buses have their numbers also in kannad).
    Even now you can see if the building is full of glass doors, by default there will be a yellow/red color flag (just to avoid stone pelting).Is it a state flag or smething. But i read, having a flag in state is against constitution. Perhaps the only state in India with a state flag.

  18. Great post. My fiancee is from Bangalore, and she’s always saying how fantastic it is; good to get another perspective. How important is IMAX though, really?

  19. Hello Mr Monteiro and loads of others

    well , i being a bangalorean do not find it at all humorous … if you have such
    a big problem why do u guys stay here ..move out .. do you know something
    every day around 500 familes are moving into bangalore .. Bangalore was initially
    designed and brougt up as a pensioners paradise .where ppl could relax and
    have a bit of fun .. Because of the IT boom and ppl moving in ..it is clear that
    the place cannot handle so much ppl . So instead of blaming bangalore ..why
    not think about doing something for it ….. rather than just cribbing about it.

    And Mr Ramsen .. it is not kannad it is KANNADA !!! why not one should be
    proud of your language .. In CHENNAI .. you see tamil boards everywhere and
    no one is complaining ..so why complain about bangalore

    I think bangalore is most cosmopolitan city ,, how many auto drivers will go out
    of their way and speak ur dialect just to get some business ( appreciate that !!! )

    Dont measure cities by IMAX –if IMAX is ur priority then i wonder what
    priorirties you have in life and what you are really taking !!!!

    I have stayed in Hyderabad and I have never felt as a foreign country ,,, infact
    due to the heat wave , it reassured the fact that Bangalore was an place to die

    Bangaloreans are very friendly and warm hearted .. I am sure if you have any
    friends it would be proved by now …

    So, when commenting pls keep in mind the sentiments of other ppl also

    sanmita :)))

  20. Very sensible way to argue: “If you don’t like it, move out”. Very sensible. What’s wrong with pointing out areas where a city needs to improve? I like being in Bangalore and I hate what is being done in the city and to the city.

    Then, there’s the “It’s being done in , so it’s okay” argument. Nope, I’m not buying that.

    And, go read this post about Bangalore which I wrote earlier this year.

  21. I appricated all the 8 comments & are genuine. It was a relly comment by akshay & he has addressed the daily life things.

    About IMAX it correct but can you tell how many Multiplexes are thr in Hyd (Hardly Two PVR,Parsad)and how many in B’lore.Even though only twoare thr, they have to reduce their ticket price (after two weeks ) from Rs100 to Rs 60 to attract people.So you can guess from this that how IMAX is running thr.

    About traffic, any developed area you go you will face that problem. You wl see same situation in other state after 4/5 year of development.Can you compare the fully developed MUMBAI,DELHI with Bangalore then only you can see the difference.


    Its human nature that, they always blame if they have something & praise one that they dont have. So dont try to find the pitfall & try become happy whatever this city has.

  22. You have mentioned 8 reasons to stay away from Bangalore but there are more than 80 reasons why you should stay in Bangalore. Just hope I had the time to write it down for you guys.

  23. hi..

    shifting to bangalore from delhi , after spending a life time in Delhi :) Next month..

    This article has re- affirmed my faith in Bangalore , and i would love try out staying here , though the job situation seems really bad for a travel professional like me However dont think minor issues like pollution, distance and traffic jams would hamper any one from staying away from a city( Well you have to stay in Delhi to check out Jams, rude people, distance – i myself do 55 kms each way to office and back )

    So i presume all you guys and Mr. P A Monteiro Bangalore .. is not all that bad :)

  24. After staying in Mumbai for 4 years, this place for just four days was a complete shock for me. Agreed that Mumbai is a crowded, fully-developed etc etc place. But it is still not expensive to stay in here if you can be any little friendly. Food is good and relatively cheap, superb commutation network, a disciplined lifestyle is what you will find in Mumbai besides the normal dreamy stuff we all know about.

    And even by those standards, Delhi is getting better with time. People there are putting efforts to make it a city worth living again. I mean where could you get such tasty food that you get in North elsewhere. Roads are good and jobs situation & means of entertainment are getting better too.

    Oh btw, did I mention no existence of traffic sense in Bangalore. Signal are highly mismanaged, misplaced, one-ways are pathetic to say the least and there is no night life. Only 2 movie theaters in just 2 malls and look at the rush there. And how could you live in a city where the life comes to a halt by 9-10 PM. I can’t imagine and that’s why I will try to stay away from Bangalore even though I am in IT.

    Enough said.

  25. Hello people and the Author,
    Although I take the article in the manner it is meant for, I have few things to tell about Bangalore.

    Firstly, I am from Interior karnataka and therefore has no first hand belongingness to Bangalore.
    Then my grandfathers or generations thereof did not create any wealth for me here- a good reason for me to choose any other better place that suits me well.

    The biggest part.
    Although having worked in SFO, Philadelphia, Denver, LA(irvine), Seattle, Chicago, Dayton, NewYork, Sunnyvale, Richmond VA, Cleveland, Salt Lake City, Tokyo, Singapore, Germany(Frankfurt), Paris, Amsterdam and Dubai, Noida, Mumbai, Chennai and Trivandrum — on many IT projects. I HAVE JUST BEEN LUCKY TO HAVE NOT GOT AN OPPORTUNITY TO WORK IN BANGALORE.

    But then I own a house in the city.

    God, Am I been blessed.

    I really pity those who are working in this crowded, cramped, unplanned, drunkard( cause of pubs) city.

    I call this city Home and I often visit, but will not live and work here. This I had to decide after umpteen attempts to get a job in City and around. Not that I am dump or so. I have had offers, but not what I asked for.
    So the city being expensive does not want to pay the staff — yes, I am talking of 2.5 laks a month – YES A MONTH. I got 2 laks per month but not more.

    What a good reason to stay away from this city? :)

    And thus necessity is mother of inventions.

    So when I dont get a job at home, I try elsewhere and I Often get them. So I live in Fremont and Life is cool. not cramped, traffic clogged and unplanned with a rush in life.

  26. To Non Bangalore and Bangaloreans,
    In My H O,

    Even though the article is in light humour. I can see that many people who do not consider a city/town/village as their home always blame it for certain uncomfortable reasons.

    But the fact is that “they” together with others were infact responsible for the bad things which happen to city.

    With respect to bangalore, I think a “non bangalorean” has to be truly ashamed to blame the city and its people simply because it cannot satisfy their personal and animilistic pleasures.(mumbaikars, delhi ites and other such tribes are surely included as non bangalorean because most of them do not have the ability to appreciate the spirit of bangalore and what it stands for or what it stood for) it is because of non bangaloreans disposition of enjoying the restaurants and movies made by drug money lords in mumbai or the delhi’s mafia’s money poured into all the good things.

    Bangalore, cannot be compared to other cities because of its disposition. So if you are only in bangalore to make money by spoiling it and then blaming it then the best thing you can do for bangalore is to leave bangalore and you will make it a better place for all of us Bangaloreans and the city.

    You can have a joyride to the city once in a week and enjoy it.

    But, then common you are Indian, you have the right to live in any city and country(like US, UK etc) ha ha.

    So stop ranting about Bangalore. Improve your own hometown first.


  27. Good, people pls stay away from Bangalore!!! Our family is living in Bangalore from past 170+ years… It was so nice in my childhood here in Bangalore; it was called The Garden City of India. Now, because of people coming and staying here from all over the world, we have lost that charm. Bangalore is our’s; we want it back, so please stay away…..

  28. Does it not sound too funny to rate a city on IMAX and silly things!!
    This is hilarious…so much that, in fact you have just made a joke of yourself and all fellow non bangloreans!!

    Why dont people go back and live in their cities..may be you are afraid you would not get paid enough or worse beg for a living!!

  29. I do ask question before going to read your 8 nonsense answers about the Bangalore. Are you from Bangalore. I dont think so. As Compare to other Metro Cities Bangalore is Cool and Green Garden city. This city is not for middle level family but think about the low level family its only made for high thinkers, scientist, doctors and after all for all Good Engineers no i’m sorry for Great Engineers. First write the good thinks before blaming to other media/magzine.

  30. One way it’s good thing that this article is publised – a lot of crappy characters who do not belong to this beautiful city will go away and the city will be a much better place to live in. What outsiders dont understand is that they come into the city, eat there, dirty the place and still crib about the city. They do not seem to realize that these characters are the ones responsible for damaging the city. Horrible hypocrites !!!

  31. True Blue Ma… What outsiders-insiders?? I point similar areas of improvement for India, that does not rob me of my citizenship. You guys will never get out of your regional mentality… I have lived here for 10 yrs and this is my city. Each of us has a stake in the city and if property prices in the city rise its the people who own the land are the biggest beneficiaries. Now don’t tell me that all the city land is also owned by your so called outsiders. Don’t whine, for the world’s greatest cities are those that were built by immigrants – Singapore and the entire US being just two examples.

  32. I dont get it. I dont understand regional pride. How can you be proud of something that happened to you. You didnt ask to be born in Bangalore. You happened to be born in Banaglore. Same thing with national pride. I dont get he concept of patriotism. Its just designed to divide people. Divide and rule policy. I’m happy to be born in Bangalore, not proud. Having got that out of the way, the one peeve I have is close mindedness as you can read from replies above mine. May George Carlin bless you.

  33. Nikhil: I think it’s when you take things to extremes that it causes problems. Interesting observation about being born in a particular place though; it made me smile.

  34. Although written over two years ago, most of the contents of your article still hold true. I wish I had read your article *before* I moved to Bangalore.

    BTW I also agree with your 1 July comment.

  35. @Kavita: The post was meant to be funny but apparently I’m not as funny as I thought I was.

    I’m going back to “funny” school for a repeat education.

  36. Okay People… I see that a lot of Proud Bangaloreans and Non Bangaloreans are very proud of their respective tribe. Well, Bangaloreans, lets face it…. Bangalore sucks in every sense of the word when it comes to traffic, infrastructure and pollution….Non Bangaloreans, We chose to move here so either live with what you got or change things…..I am sure we wont do that because we are waiting for someone else to do it. Referring to Sanmita’s log on asking non-bangaloreans to leave….I could just smile in amazement at the immaturity of her comments…..

  37. have been here for 3 months and compared to the rest of country’s cities bangalore sucks for one reason above all… horrible people… getting anything done is like pulling your own nails… be prepared to fight like a rabid dog to ensure that people on the other end dont screw you over… be it transport( rickshaws, buses, taxis ) , electricity connections, gas connections, internet connections, even buying an car is a pain in the $%^ … i would sincerely advise everyone not to bother with this place… go and stay somewhere where humans can live… here you need to an animal to survive… will be out of this place in 6 more month…yipeeeeee :)

  38. Lol, Is this still carrying on???

    Oh by the way , I have found a place for export surplus clothes. Its Hum India, on Church street and Commercial street. Nothing like SN in Delhi but closer.
    So, all dilliwalas who have missed SN, heres Hum to u in Bangalore.

  39. Sonia: Yeah, this thing goes on and on with no end in sight. I’m seriously considering closing comments because the post’s close to 2.5 years old.

    Good to hear that you’ve found what you were looking for here in Bangalore.

  40. As I mentioned in the last comment, I’m closing the comments for this post. You can always write to me about this post using the Contact link on the main page, but seriously it’s been more than two years. Let it go.

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