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Showing posts from April, 2013

How the cause of humanity never appeals to Americans, while war mongering comes naturally!

I had been quite upset over the completely politically motivated Oscar award for the Best Picture to a rank ordinary, non thrilling, slow paced, average film called Argo, specially in the year when Lincoln was released, and Django Unchained – with its heart in a similar place and with film making par excellence – was released! So when a friend of mine suggested to me that we watch a slightly older film called Charlie Wilson’s War, saying that it was based on a true CIA operations story, I was least interested. I thought that it was one of those films that had been again made to lobby for American ‘heroism’ at the cost of putting another nation down. I couldn’t have been wronger. After seeing the movie, I wondered how I had missed this gem when it was released! Never too late I guess. Charlie Wilson was an American Congressman (elected 11 times from Texas to the US House of Representatives, from 1972 till 1996) who became the first civilian to be decorated with the Honored Colleagu

Why innovation alone can save Indian brands

The opening of the first Starbucks outlet in South Mumbai in October last year triggered quite some frenzy among Mumbaikars, with long queues of venti-mocha-frap verve translating into a major rock concert hysteria. And it was all for a coffee shop! Imagine the burst of marketing energy from Starbucks to take advantage of this excitement. Within five months of opening its first outlet, four each were opened in Mumbai and Delhi (taking the footprint of the coffee chain to nine outlets in India). It reminded me of the kind of madness that was witnessed during the launch of Pepsi and the relaunch of Coke in India, way back in the early 1990s. Here’s the simple truth – our craze for foreign brands has never ceased, despite our progress in almost all dimensions of socio-economic parameters. Why? Because as a nation, experience has taught us that our brands have never quite had the gumption of American, British, European or even Japanese brands. The halo was and is missing. This lack of uni

The Modi versus Rahul battle reminds me of the Dhirubhai versus Nusli Wadia battle!

To me, this latest Narendra Modi versus Rahul Gandhi battle is definitely looking more like a circus with every passing day. And in this circus, a number of Congress and BJP spokespersons are looking like jokers; as are a lot of media personalities who are salivating at the prospect of an American Presidential style election – which this surely isn’t. However, yes, the more this debate is becoming bitterer, aggressive, and cantankerous, the more are the viewers watching it! So American style elections or not, this circus is certainly becoming entertaining! And say what I may, none of us can escape this circus till the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Television channels have in fact started live telecasts of speeches being delivered by Rahul Gandhi and Narendra Modi. Like in a Hindi blockbuster, there is this likable guy who was born with many silver, gold and diamond spoons. He is a child of dynasty and privilege and has the power to actually make a difference. Opposing him is a person