India faces worst economic crisis in 20 years

Kashmiri pedestrians walk past a stall selling wedding garlands made from Indian rupee notes at a market in Srinagar on August 28, 2013. India's rupee slumped nearly four percent to a fresh record low against the dollar as concerns about a US-led military strike against Syria compounded deepening domestic economic woes.

Tensions over a possible U.S.-led military strike against Syria are driving up the U.S. dollar, often seen as a safe-haven for investors. Meanwhile, other currencies around the globe are suffering -- especially India's rupee. A perfect storm of economic factors, including rising U.S. interest rates that make the dollar more attractive to investors and an underlying weakness in India's economy, are leading to India's worst economic crisis in two decades.

The rupee fell below 68 to the dollar on Wednesday, a drop of 3.4 percent. Some analysts predict the rupee could go as low as 75 to the dollar.

"Every morning, Indian businessmen get up and try to predict how much lower the rupee is going to fall," says Rahul Tandon of the BBC, on the street in Calcutta. "Hour after hour, foreign investors are moving their money out of the world's largest democracy."

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