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Over the centuries Ahmedabad (‘abad’ means ‘prosper’) has boomed and declined. Founded in 1411 by Ahmed Shah, at the spot where he saw a hare chasing a dog (he was impressed by its bravery), Ahmedabad was thought to be one of the finest cities in India in the 17th century, but by the 18th century its influence had waned. Its industrial strength once again raised the city to prominence, becoming a huge textile centre from the second half of the 19th century, which resulted in much immigration to man the mills. From 1915 it became famous as the site of Gandhi’s ashram. In 1970 the last mills closed and the subsequent economic hardship may have been a contributing factor in the communal unrest that split the city in 2002.