One reason why Manali locals feel so secure about their bank balance (despite their perplexing self-destructive behaviour with tourists) is the large population of foreign nationals living here long-term. By 2010-11, Manali had a floating tourist population of about 1,33,707 foreigners. Of these, many stay from March to October and then move south (to Goa, Pondicherry, Thiruvannamalai) for the winter.
These foreigners would pay from Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000 as monthly home rent, in 2014. They also engage in wink wink "transcendental meditation through the oral and nasal cavity" wink wink, consume a "natural, herbal" fad called MMS -- Miracle Mineral Solution -- and basically live it up in "poor" India among fawning dark-skinned natives (that's a gora perspective).
They also do not have any known sources of income. So, how do they do it? Put crudely, they live on dole. Claiming unemployment benefits, child care benefits, housing allowance, medical allowance, among other benefits from their governments, these expats live very comfortably at very little expense, here in India.
There's a reason why there is a hierarchy of nations in the world. First you bleed dry some nations, exploit their natural wealth and basically work hard to keep them poor. That's Third World countries for you. Then you keep some other countries in a not-so-bad, not-so-good state, neither here nor there, in suspended motion, hanging in balance and call them the Second World. Of course, the rest of the world, the money-lenders, the oil giants, the energy majors, the greedy industrialists, the ruthless capitalists, the hand-on-heart charity-espousing celebrities, the very people who divided things, nations, people into Third and Second Worlds inhabit the First World.
There's a reason why there is a hierarchy of nations in the world. It's to enable our 'friends' from Europe to get the best unreal (but they do) value for their money in the Third World among (to them) 3rd class residents. A 2014 report claimed that Swiss nationals were demanding more than 2500 Euros per month as unemployment "benefits" from the state. To tour the world at their exchequer's expense?! Wowee!
HOUSE PROUD? NOT YET. HOME IN THE HILLS VAERY TOUGH TO GET MY FRAENDDD...
So, armed with atleast Rs 85,000 and nearly Rs 1,50,000 to "blow" each month (not counting "underhand", "shady", "under-the-table, beneath-the-chair"! deals), expats in Manali live sweet. They also enter into incredibly stupid land deals with the locals. For instance, when I was there, a gora would agree to lease a 1200 sq ft plot at anything from Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh a year for 20 years or till he/she drops dead, whichever is earlier. The foreign tourist will then construct a well-equipped house on this plot, furnish the house with all modern amenities and re-furbish it every 5 years. At the end of the duration of the lease, the house passes on to the land owner, who also got between Rs 50,000 and Rs 1 lakh each year for 20 years. There are several such houses around Manali, a cluster of them in "Shanti Valley" above Old Manali Village, off the path toward the Manalsu river. Spoiled by the goras so much and for so long, no wonder the locals don't enter into deals with "Indians" and if they do, it's at astoundingly exorbitant lease amounts, impossible for most (including the ranter, me) to cough up.
Also, many foreign tourists stay on in Manali after "marrying" local men and women. While this might seem like a personal matter, it is not. These marriages are convenient quid pro quo deals, with land-owning locals enabling Euro and Dollar rich goras invest in real estate and conduct a profit-making tourist operation, in both India and from abroad. When I was living in Manali, a Swiss-German couple was overheard talking about a German friend of theirs "looking for a local girl to marry" (much like "looking for fresh local charas"), so that he could "finally settle" in India. There are several examples of this informal international conjugal alliance.
Ok, no naming names but guess it right if you can.
The eye of the largest cat species: The stocky owner of this very popular guest house in Old Manali has "married" a Dutch lady. They've actually gone Dutch here, ha!
A Sports Club in a village: This Austrian man "wedded" a local girl years ago and now wines and dines with the expat crowd and minor royals
Sprawling resort meets moolah: This French guy married a local girl and now owns a resort nestled in a sprawling compound en route Naggar from Manali
Gaon ki gori from Russia: A local guy, famous for leching equally at Indians and foreigners (women, yeah, women) married a Russian girl some years ago and has now turned her completely local, in both attire and spirit
INCREDIBLE TOURISM: FATAL ATTRACTION?
On June 4, 2013, a foreign tourist was gang-raped in Manali. The incident was covered widely in the press, with the Indian media quickly apportioning blame on “Nepalis”. Nepalis is a generic term used for bad characters, repeat offenders, hardened criminals, who may or MAY NOT be Nepalese. More often than not they are LOCALS.