Spending habits have undergone dramatic changes in recent years in India. A new report finds that people are spending a great deal on clothes and communications.

Indian is showing a preference for ready-made apparel with a massive 75% hike in such purchases while the neighbourhood darzi may soon be an extinct species as tailoring expenses have gone down by 26% in the rural sector and 33% in the urban sector.

Another major change in consumer behaviour was found in the way India connects. Telephone expenditure, per person per month, increased by a whopping 515% since 1999-2000 in rural areas and by 230% in urban areas. The deep inroads made by the mobile revolution was visible in the proportion of households incurring expenditure on telephone going up from 5% to 32% in rural areas and from 25% to 63% in urban areas. Expenditure on education has gone up from 45% to 57% in urban India and from 29% to 44% in rural India while expenses on health care have also gone up substantially.

All of these are a clear indicator of change culture and values in modern India. Embrace of modernity and globalization of India does not come without its perils. Consumeristic ideology and rampant materialism does not satisfy deepest human aspirations. More stuff and toys only adds to new and complicated problems in the society. It merely replaces one set of problems with new ones. How will the Indian community, the Hindu faith or Indian church in India address these and other changes in India? This is something I would like to keep a close eye on.

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