Blame the Olympics for India’s missing manhole covers

iStockphoto.com Via World Politics Review and 2point6billion comes this story from the Times of India about Mumbai’s mysterious manhole shortage. It seems that in the last few months, over 1,500 manhole covers have been stolen from the city and surrounding region by organized gangs, with predictable consequences for sanitation and safety. Who’s the culprit? According to ...

By , a former associate editor at Foreign Policy.
594565_080618_sewer2.jpg
594565_080618_sewer2.jpg

iStockphoto.com

Via World Politics Review and 2point6billion comes this story from the Times of India about Mumbai's mysterious manhole shortage. It seems that in the last few months, over 1,500 manhole covers have been stolen from the city and surrounding region by organized gangs, with predictable consequences for sanitation and safety.

Who's the culprit? According to local authorities, it's China, where massive Olympic construction projects have driven up the global prices for iron ore. The municipality bought the covers for about $80 and they're now selling on the black market for about $130.

iStockphoto.com

Via World Politics Review and 2point6billion comes this story from the Times of India about Mumbai’s mysterious manhole shortage. It seems that in the last few months, over 1,500 manhole covers have been stolen from the city and surrounding region by organized gangs, with predictable consequences for sanitation and safety.

Who’s the culprit? According to local authorities, it’s China, where massive Olympic construction projects have driven up the global prices for iron ore. The municipality bought the covers for about $80 and they’re now selling on the black market for about $130.

A senior official said that he/she had also heard of thefts being reported in Europe and North America. Just to bring things full circle, many of those covers were also probably manufactured in India.

Joshua Keating was an associate editor at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @joshuakeating

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