Friday, June 1, 2012

The Penguin Car...

I so wanted to buy this beauty... but she's not for sale! The sturdy , dependable Ambassador car, certainly deserves not just a makeover, but a remarketing, rebranding exercise. Errrr... a diesel version of this old gas guzzler, that is!
Customised to mark the 25th year of Penguin Books in India, The Penguin Car travels all over the country, packed with great books. Isn't that a novel way to market titles?? I did this quick promotional shoot for VOGUE (India) in Jaipur. The picture was shot by Ananth Padmanabhan, who is a very competent photographer, as you can tell. He has an entirely different day job. He heads Sales & Marketing at Penguin.
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This appeared in Bombay Times today....

Bandh ko bandh karo!

One had foolishly believed that the era of old-fashioned ‘bandhs’ was well and truly over. Apparently not! Here we are dealing with yet another unproductive day in which the only thing achieved” is a monumental loss of revenue. Whoever these Bandh blokes are, by forcing citizens to bunk work and stay home, they will only be invoking anger and scorn. If this is their way to attract attention and gain political mileage out of what is a gigantic national crisis ( rising prices!), they are wrong if they imagine the people of Mumbai are with them. Of course, the fuel hike is the trigger. And of course, it affects the aam aadmi( not politicians) the most. But by staying away from work, will fuel prices come down? Will it make one jot of a difference? We all know the answer. Despite zero popular support, despite the 2003 High Court rap and fine, politicians are at it again – this is dadagiri at its clumsiest.Today’s Mumbaikar should stand up and defy such a diktat that is perverse and serves no purpose. Bandhs as a form of political protest, had their day a decade ago. Even then, the aam aadmi used to feel frustrated and annoyed at being compelled by a bunch of goons to bring normal activity in the city to a halt. There was no sympathy for those Bandhs back then, there is none now. It is the pheriwalas and small traders who suffer the most when the city shuts shop. Let’s be honest, what do most people do during a Bandh? Do they spontaneously take to the streets to register their rage against the government? Do they join the organisers to show their solidarity to the cause? Do they use the extra free time to pressurise the powers that be in a meaningful manner? Forget it. People stay home, watch television, take long afternoon siestas, and wait for the Bandhwallas to go away so they can saunter out and catch a movie without being pelted with stones or beaten up.

A city like Mumbai simply cannot afford a Bandh. A day’s lost wages is a huge loss here. If the BJP’s Sudhir Munganitiwar describes the Bandh as a litmus test, and issues ultimatums, he risks his own credibility. It is worth asking who or what gives this person or any other person, the right to allow or disallow freedom of movement? Threats and dumdatti are so yesterday…. They worked at a time when people were unaware of their rights and went along with random diktats from random people. Who determines the nature of essential services’? Who defines what exactly constitutes ‘essential’’? Who compensates people who consider a marriage date éssential’? And surely people have every right to celebrate in whichever way on whichever day they see fit? What happens to all the food that has been pre-ordered? Guests who may be travelling from other cities for the happy occasion? This is grossly unfair. And even those citizens who are appalled by the price rise and very angry with the government , will agree that a Bandh’ will not solve this problem. Ít would be far more democratic if political parties were to display a more constructive attitude and urge people to conserve precious fuel, till we see a correction and a major rethink at the Centre. Indulging in a show of strength or plain dadagiri will only antagonise the aam aadmi already reeling from daily problems. Mumbai should not allow itself to be held to ransom by a small group of motivated people like this. Jago,Mumbai,Jago. Kaam karo, kaam karo! Bandh ko ignore karo!

14 comments:

NAT said...

Well said. Surely 99% of the people feel the same.
It is the poor daily wage personnel who suffer the most, besides a National loss for some scoundrels to gain mileage.
It is these goons who make a hit (bonus)as they are paid very well to disrupt the City functioning.
When will we learn?
We have all the negative aspects in life and that is why we who should have been among the top Countries in the world, are considered a third world. A pity.

Cheers!

Pooja Rathore said...

Its true Bandh does not solve any problem only leads to losses.very sensible post.
i loved your post -bollywood heroines in need of stylist- straight and to the point,i completely agree with you -vidya balan really looks like "amma" no style boringly traditional rest of the heroines i dont care- exception - karishma kappor she looks soooooooooo good ,you are right when you say just look at her.hope the bollywood heroines read your post and do the needful!

Martina said...

Forget the BANDH.
I am eyeing that burnt orange Penguin ambassador,and the beauty in the purple kaaftan! :D

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Raghav said...

"Voila! The 'Savvy 'Cover" - this is a follow up... i thought!

Dreamlike said...

people should sell off private cars and take to public transport; that would save fuel, pollution and ttraffisc...and would be a constrcutive way to protest.

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MdShafiqM said...

AGREED! ALL THOSE WHO PLAN, SUPPORT OR ENCOURAGE ANY SORT OF 'BANDHS' ....FOR WHATEVER REASONS, THAT COULD BE..........IS UNJUSTIFIED IN TOTALITY..... MUST BE MOST HEAVILY FINED; PUT BEHIND BARS, FOR LIFE-TIME, SNATCHED AWAY FROM ANY RESPECTABLE POSITIONS IN SOCIETY, THROWN OUT FROM THE JOBS, WHATSOEVER .... MUST BE BRANDED AS TRAITORS OR THROWN OUT OF THE COUNTRY, ONCE AND FOR ALL.

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Envoy truly is one of the most durable car created for native Indian industry. If this car gets a remodeling it could offer like hot desserts.

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