Mumbai terrorist attacks don't deter technology companies

Multinational companies in India shocked but unfazed by terrorist attacks in Mumbai.

Terrorist attacks this week in Mumbai are unlikely to make multinational technology companies change their strategies for India.

The attack in Mumbai is the latest in a string of terrorist attacks across the country, including a number of attacks earlier in Mumbai.

The attacks by terrorists using guns and grenades in Mumbai did however appear different than previous ones, because it targeted top five-star hotels in Mumbai's business district. Over 100 people have been killed in the shootouts, which still continue as police battle the armed terrorists. Some foreign residents at the hotel are being held hostage by the terrorists.

"It is sad that this has happened, but we are confident that India will bounce back to normalcy," said Vidya Natampally, director of strategy at Microsoft Research India.

The terrorist attacks will not change Microsoft Research's plans in India. "We are committed to staying on in India," Natampally added.

Dell has issued a travel advisory to its staff, advising caution and due diligence when traveling to India, said a spokeswoman for the company. "That is the only measure we have taken," she added.

A large number of technology companies including Oracle, Microsoft, and Dell run large software development and call center operations in India. But ever since the threat of terrorism increased since last year, these companies have tightened on security at their facilities.

"For a long time now, we have tightened on security at all our facilities," the Dell spokeswoman said.

Indian outsourcing companies and Indian operations of multinational technology companies were not affected by the attacks, though the disruption of train service in Mumbai on Thursday could affect the movement of staff.

The Bombay Stock Exchange in south Mumbai has shut down on Thursday. The state government has ordered schools and colleges closed Thursday.

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John Ribeiro

IDG News Service
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