Category Archives: Politics and Economy

The Chinese Dragon by Rajiv Bajaj, The King of Indian Motorcycle Industry.

*The Chinese dragon*

by *Rajiv Bajaj*

A couple of WhatsApp groups I am a member of should be renamed China problem group. 90% of discussions is on how China hijacked the world economy, how they do not deserve to do so, how all politicians have let us down, how they are stealing all intellectual property and how we are doomed if we do not stop downloading tiktok.

All true. And no, this article is not about disagreeing with this narrative. This article is not about the fact that an average Chinese student in US beats the shit out of all other students (including Indians) in terms of hours they works and their only disadvantage is that their English is not as good, but they’re getting there. No this article is not about the fact that the people of China worked their butts off while Italians holidayed and French wanted a 4 day week. No this article is not about the fact that you cannot hire a decent machinist or a metal forger in India because all of them are sitting in call centers answering questions from technically challenged Americans.
Of course, I agree and support the view that China and it’s people do not deserve the place they have reached (I don’t want to be trolled). They are thieves, they do not take 4-week holidays. They should be punished.

So what is this article about? This is about an industry where China has been beaten by India. It has been shown it’s not the government, neither the people, it’s really the companies that compete. And as far as India is concerned the people responsible for the demise of manufacturing are these companies.

Year 1983, I pass out of Engineering college in Mumbai considered to be one of the best. Irrespective of the branch—Mechanical, Electrical, Civil, Production, Textile, 80% become coders for the software industry.
Year 2000, I am at Bajaj Auto as HR head (after working for 15 years as a technical person), and am off to conduct campus interviews, to hire 100 Engineers who will build the 100-cc engine of a motorcycle. I am day 5 in VJTI and all other RECs. I end up hiring 10 people from 15 colleges. In every college I am told by the Training and Placement officer (TPO) that tech companies get preference. I say I don’t understand, is building an Engine not technology? No that’s manufacturing.

Writing Cobol code for a bank in New York by a TCS employee is technology. May be the Chinese forced us to do this.

Next year I write to all colleges. I want to be day 0 in your campus. I will offer three times the salary of the best “so called technology company”, but only if I am day 0.
Hiring 100 Engineers at three times salary was no problem for me as compared to TCS, which had to hire 2000 “Bodies”. They could never match that salary.
And that’s how Bajaj Auto built its R&D. Batch by Batch. Making designing and manufacturing of motorcycles sexy and paying for it. The selection ratio was 1:15.

Most of the IITS, RECS, and VJTIS had toppers who were absolutely useless. They could not draw a Carnot cycle, could not tell the difference between a diesel and petrol engine. Give them an elevation and plan they could not draw the side view. Most of them were focusing on writing code. But we found gems, we found guys who were passionate and knowledgeable but could not express in English. I started conducting interviews in Hindi, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil and so on.

There was another company doing the same TVS. South based, they also built a great R&D.

Year 2005, Chinese motorcycles attacked India with products which were 30% cheaper. Many dealers started selling them. Press predicted demise of Indian manufacturers. Within 6 months they went broke. Their quality was no match to Indian motorcycles. They never came back again.

Bajaj then stared attacking them in Africa. Africans had two choices; buy expensive Japanese motorcycles or cheap Chinese. Chinese motorcycles used to come in a box. You buy the box and take it to a mechanic and he will assemble it. In Nigeria motorcycles are used as taxis. So no one is going to pay you a dime more. In such a market Bajaj launched it’s fully assembled motorcycle. Priced more than Chinese less than Japanese. And worked hard. Today Bajaj is a market leader. TVS is number two. Chinese have been driven out. You can see videos of the love that the Okada (taxi drivers) have for Bajaj Bikes. Country by Country in Africa.

In South America Indians captured the market driving the Chinese out.

In 2018 India became the largest manufacturer of two wheelers in the world (twice the size of China). Indian companies have started buying out European Brands. The market leader of motorcycles in Europe is not BMW, its KTM owned by Bajaj. China is slipping fast not only in the manufacturing of Bikes also in the manufacturing of components. Indian suppliers are beating them hands down. Between three Indian Companies Hero, Bajaj and TVS India today dominates the world market. Honda a Japanese company has shifted most of it’s R&D to India.

Why was this not done in TVs, in Computers, in Mobile phones, in Pharmaceuticals and other industries? The same country, the same labor laws, the same infrastructure but not the same entrepreneurs. Indian businessmen are characterized by a myopic vison—it’s both short term as well as geographically limited. Of course, the government also does not help.

So, who is responsible for the Chinese dominance—the government, the people or the Corporates?
I think its all the three. When even ITI trained turners and fitters refuse to work in a shop floor, when a Stock Broker is paid more than an Engineer, when typing code is mistaken for technology, when governments refuse to amend antique labor and land laws when corporates think local and not global and finally when you, yes you, will not send your son to work on the shop floor, each one of these factors is as responsible for the Chinese dominance as much as their “Ethical Corruption”. We have been looted because we left our doors and windows open.

No this article is not supporting the Chinese. How dare they work so hard? And how dare they obey a communist government? We should stop buying all their goods and we will make every thing in our country. But we will work nine to five with a three-day weekend. We will overcome. One Day!!

-Rajiv Bajaj(MD, Bajaj Auto)

Is Kochi M.G.Road, Dying.

Is Kochi M G road dying. .?

A lot of shops are shutting down.

No parking during day time
.
No traffic during night
.
Many feel it is because of the Lulu mall which is offering a one stop solution..

I have fond memories of once the most prestigious commercial address of the state..in my college days,I used to frequent this road in many a weekends & on vacations..it gave me a lot of positive energy while shopping& while doing window shopping..
Paico for magazines & books, the Abad Plaza shop to buy the latest in music albums..,’Remanika’,Seemati & Jayalakshmi, Alappat & Bhima,old Ceylon bake house for Biriyani at lunch time,..Bimbis,.. Dwaraka & Woodlands, the first Chick King opposite to Maharajas,Zodiac,Jos Brothers,Parthas,Sylcon..’Pandal’ for Chinese food..came to the state’s only big screen Vistarama projection ‘Shenoys’ to catch the latest in hindi & English movies,it was one up on our pride ‘Ragam’ in TCR…the massive ‘Kavitha’ & ‘Padma’ added to the choices..I have fond memories of watching ‘HAHK’ in Shenoys,..’Rangeela’ & ‘Speed’ in Padma,..Archies in Convent road to buy cards & wall posters..A glimpse of beautiful students of St.Theresa’s gave an added joy..also the ravishing north Indian girls who came from the Southern naval command..it was also the old airport road for us..that one big stretch of road..the road was so colourful those days..could spend an entire day walking leisurely from one end to another..I recently thought of taking a room in one of the hotels in the street in weekend & rekindle the old memories by walking from one end to another..

The corporation & town planning department of Kochi should have been more careful in anticipation of eminent competition that came in the form of one stop shopping destinations..
classic example is Istanbul..people still love the charm of shopping in ‘Taksim’ street than the big malls that have come up in the city… the ‘La Ramblas’ street shopping experience in Barcelona than any mall in the big city…they all had that far sightedness..

These days for a lot going to Lulu is more convenient for shopping as it offers everything under one roof..but for me it is like reading in ‘Kindle’ than the nostalgic touch & feel of a real book or magazine. I am a voracious reader,for me i never liked Kindle..i get almost a same feeling thinking about the MG Road..

It is never too late..they can still restore it to the old glory..In Trichur,we were sad when our Ragam closed,it was not merely a theater for us..it was much much more..we were overjoyed when it reopened a couple of months before..

Please give your feedback,as I feel sorry for the shop keepers there..many of them are familiar faces for long..they are in a state of sheer helplessness or they don’t know how to come out of it..

Kochi M. G. Road has been on steady decline since arrival of lulu mall.

Faisal K Subaid

Incredible India Very Expensive

My freind from Mumbai wanted to Visit Kerala (the most sought after destination in India and backed by brilliant commercials that is being feature at UK and USA) Kerala otherwise known as “the gods own country” looks brilliant and sometimes munnar can make you feel like nothing better than the best in the world,however it comes at a cost.

If you get your math right, India is a more expensive tourist destination if you just discount, the international flight charges, now with low cost cheap fights like, air Asia, is making Singapore and Malaysia much more cheaper destination for average Indians. Whats more, the the price that you pay for a 3 star accommodation you can get it for much lesser prices there than in India.

On the contrary Our Govt, is looking for options where by you can further tax,, or find new methods of taxing either the tourist or the hotels.

Govt have spend several crores of rupees, for their most famous campaign Incredible India, and have even roped in actor aamir khan to promote it, but let me ask you, whats the point, when govt has taken no action to at least keep dustbins or waste bins in major tourists areas.

TAJ MAHAL is a classic example of how bad govt of India can bring disgrace to the worlds most iconic historical monument. The Approach Roads to TAJ is bad, there are long waiting ques to get inside, people come to you to inform that you can get inside, without standing in this line, then pay them Rs 100 or above.

The Taj is so poorly managed that, it is a national shame, thanks to the govt of India for this efforts. Also its here in Taj that once ive noticed world most disgraceful racial discrimination, where there is board that mentions Foreginers 25 USD Indian 25 Rs. How will you identify a foreigner, yes he should have a fair skin, africans, afro americans are all spared.

After Modi, Comming into power, he introduced swatch bharat cess another additional tax on the already over taxed Indian citizens(India’s truest minority) well its not just about paying tax that we need proper execution plans.

In kerala govt has implemented a plastic ban, now if you want to go to the nearest grocery store to buy milk and other essentials on the way  back from work, you do not have an option to carry the same.

First one needs to tackle the problem by bringing in a alternative to plastic bags, then implement a ban on the same.

To make India a cleaner place first provide more public toilets, then educate and inform through pictures and posters and using all media vehicles. Provide dust bin and all possible locations. Proper and Scientific Garbage disposal units have to be made from the authorities. and then impost strict laws that will punish the offenders. With use of mordern technology and CCTV cameras its easy to find the culprits. Fear, Fear will work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Who is the winner of India Pakistan match.

Pakistan a country that can be accommodated as a state in our country and an economically weak nation and politically sad leadership, this is what Pakistan is all about, but when it comes to cricket this small team can be a real thereat to India, So if team which is small can actually scare you, then its not the winner at the end of the match between india and pakistan that matters but the ultimate winner is the game of cricket. There is no denials we all enjoy an action packed india pakistan match unlike any other.

Culture of Corruption in India.

Corruption In India, a cultural aspect.

Sad but true. Read on.

Hobbesian.(culture of self interest)

Corruption in India is a cultural aspect.
Indians seem to think nothing peculiar about corruption .
It is everywhere.

Indians tolerate corrupt individuals rather than correct them.

No race can be congenitally corrupt.
But can a race be corrupted by its culture?

To know why Indians are corrupt ,
look at their patterns and practices .

First:

Religion is transactional in India.
Indians give God cash and anticipate an out-of-turn reward.
Such a plea acknowledges that favours are needed for the undeserving.

In the world outside the temple walls,
such a transaction is named- “bribe”.

A wealthy Indian gives not cash to temples,
but gold crowns and such baubles.

His gifts can not feed the poor. His pay-off is for God.
He thinks it will be wasted if it goes to a needy man.

In June 2009, The Hindu published a report of Karnataka minister
G. Janardhan Reddy gifting a crown of gold and diamonds worth
Rs 45 crore to Tirupati.

India’s temples collect so much that
they don’t know what to do with it.
Billions are gathering dust in temple vaults.

When Europeans came to India they built schools.
When Indians go to Europe & USA, they build temples.

Indians believe that if God accepts money for his favours,
then nothing is wrong in doing the same thing.
This is why Indians are so easily corruptible.

Indian culture accommodates such transactions morally.
There is no real stigma. An utterly corrupt Jaya Lalita can
make a comeback, just unthinkable in the West.

Second –

Indian moral ambiguity towards corruption is visible in its history.
Indian history tells of the capture of cities and kingdoms after guards
were paid off to open the gates, and commanders paid off to surrender.

This is unique to India.

Indians’ corrupt nature has meant limited warfare on the subcontinent.
It is striking how little Indians have actually fought compared to
ancient Greece and modern Europe.

The Turks’ battles with Nadir Shah were vicious and fought to the finish.

In India fighting wasn’t needed, bribing was enough to see off armies.

Any invader willing to spend cash could brush aside India’s kings,
no matter how many tens of thousands soldiers were in their infantry.

Little resistance was given by the Indians at the “Battle” of Plassey.
Clive paid off Mir Jaffar and all of Bengal folded to an army of 3,000.

There was always a financial exchange to taking Indian forts.
Golconda was captured in 1687 after the secret back door was left open.

Mughals vanquished Marathas and Rajputs with nothing but bribes.

The Raja of Srinagar gave up Dara Shikoh’s son Sulaiman to
Aurangzeb after receiving a bribe.

There are many cases where Indians participated
on a large scale in treason due to bribery.

Question is: Why Indians have a transactional culture while
other ‘civilized’ nations don’t?

Third –

Indians do not believe in the theory that they all can rise
if each of them behaves morally, because that is not
the message of their faith.

Their caste system separates them.
They don’t believe that all men are equal.
This resulted in their division and migration to other religions .

Many Hindus started their own faith like Sikh, Jain, Buddha
and many converted to Christianity and Islam.

The result is that Indians don’t trust one another .

There are no Indians in India ,there are
Hindus ,Christians, Muslims and what not.

Indians forget that 1500 years ago they all belonged to one faith.

This division evolved an unhealthy culture.
The inequality has resulted in a corrupt society,

In India every one is thus against everyone else,
except God ¬ and even he must be bribed.

Humble Doctors needs to be awarded by the government.

There are doctors who charge exorbitantly for few minutes of talk that they do with you, and then there are doctors who charge very minimal amounts from poor people.

I happen to hear about several doctors who have been treating poor people with no financial motive in mind. They have several patients too, i even have heard about doctors who attend 50 to 60 patients a day.

Since these doctors who spend their half of life in treating the poor and the needy, should be identified by the government and should be rewarded, this should be a big motivation for them, and other doctors as well.

One plan to promote doctors who are very well know and is known more for the service they do and the number of poor people that has they have helped. Forgetting about the money that they could have made if they were working in a bigger city or if they have persuaded a career abroad.

The government of each state should identify these medical practitioners and give them a state award every year for one doctor for the notable service that they do for the poor people.

By doing so other doctors also shall get motivated and do more work for poor people and less for money.

Incredible India, please read this, please take care

I would have written a 2000 word article on the poor management of tourism development board, but I know even that may not be of any use, because no one really cares.

However, I want to let know all those who read this that we should take some action to bring more revenues in our country in the form of international tourist destination.

Rule one TAJ MAHAL, India’s biggest tourist attraction should be managed with lot more care and love than what’s been done today.

Taj Mahal is not maintained well and no one really care either.

There is a Rs 300 entry fee for foreigners, and Rs 10-30 for Indians it does not matter if you are from Africa or Malaysia, china etc as you can tell you are from Assam, which leaves with the fact that all whites are foreigners and shall take a Rs 300 ticket to see Taj Mahal. Sorry this is not racial discrimination.

The Taj Mahal is the biggest attraction of large number of foreigners but its very poorly maintained, un hygienic, un productive, dirty, and Taj Mahal is not cleaned either. (Who has the time?)

If government wants to promote tourism in these sectors all the resorts, hotels and places of lodging in tourism areas like hill station and other tourist attractions should have a 50% cut in tax. Here we have a 15% additional luxury tax in addition to the normal tax that we pay.

The taxi fares should be regularized so that no one is on losses, both the taxi driver as well as tourists.

The local police need to be more active and should have police patrolling day and night and catch hold of all the suspicious activities.

Lets save India and bring more revenues to our country.

Dear Tourism Minister and people at incredible India are you listening.

Gods own mistake – kerala worst state administration

Mumbai, April 2004,

Just out of my business school, working with great brand called the Levers, and just dreaming to make it big in my life, and there comes the twist of my life and career, my father was not in good health, and I had to be back to Cochin Kerala for good, and there started my new career in Kerala.

It’s been 4 yrs since i have been in Kerala, what i have found out is Kerala is one god forsaken country, no doubts, there are politicians who make parties like the congress A group, B group, M group etc and god alone knows what for? and the best part is we the people of Kerala without realising the fact have heavy discussions on who is a better group and who is not.

No one have any intention of making this state a great place to live in, in comparison with other states, Kerala has the largest number of strikes, hartals,bandh and other forms of exercises where one can just stop working, initially, I use to wonder why are there so many strike and blame the politicians, thinking, how are they so successful? later i came to understand, that, the strikes are successful, thanks to attitude of Keralites, we are a set of lazy people who just want to have some small excuse to take a leave I still have no Clue.

The low income level, I thought that was the cause of this laziness, but the answer is NO, even those with high income is as lazy as the one who has low income, so salary is not the constraint, then what is it? God alone know. May be the communist attitude that runs in their blood.

Since 4 yrs there has been no well maintained metaled roads in Kerala, the government blame it on the rains, according to the chief minister Mr V S Acuthanathan, the roads are bad because people travel in it, so it’s bound to be bad, I just wish Kerala had good safe motor able roads. Another interesting point to note is when asked for poor condition of road they say its because of rains when asked about electric power cuts every day they say its because of low rain fall. How contradicting!

THE CORPORATION OF COCHIN, says there is no place to dump the garbage, so the corporation can take only food waste and no plastic waste, no paper waste, no garden waste, shall be taken, and one should find there own measures to dumb the waste, this shall make people defaulters and then the corporation can fine them. I cannot fight with the corporation because they shall fine me for the default that I have done, without which one cannot get their business going.

The corporation can probably get a world record for constructing a smallest possible bridge in the longest possible time, in marine drive which is close to 10 meters which took a cool 2 and half years to complete the same. to add it all, it was inaugurated by a minister.

The commercial capital of Kerala, Kochi, has more number of Red Killers (the Private Bus Operators) who kills innocent lives and is back to work next day. They drive in the city roads with as much ease as driving a motor cycle. The traffic police will always help the rash bus drivers, and they will hide in small by lanes so that they can fine the small motor cycle defaulters largely for defaults like Parking in a no parking area, and defaulting the one way, and so on, however they leave the Rash driving bus drivers free. Why is it like this?

The Chief Minister of the State, Mr V.S. Achuthananthan which his favorite automobile the JCB started demolishing every so called, illegal litigation of land that has happened. He damaged several buildings in the busiest road of the commercial capital of Kerala, The M.G.Road, and he stopped half way through. I wonder, why he had to do it? and what has he attained, however the best part of this demolition drive in M.G.Road was the people of Kerala who came to visit, this like a football match and was clapping when small portion of buildings which was part of litigation was demolished, and now almost an year down the lane, the remains look like few demolished sites of a war in Iraq. I still have not figured out why was this act done? And what have the government of Kerala attained out of it.

THE SMART CITY, similar to the one in Dubai, is always in signing process, for 4 yrs its still in signing stage, do the government of Kerala strongly believe that we the people of Kerala are such great fools, i guess they do, the road that leads to smart city is the size of a service lane of a six track highway which the entire state of Kerala have never seen. As soon as you land at Kochi International Airport, you see huge hoardings which sell apartments near smart city, not knowing the fact the smart city is on the process, not yet. An apartment in the surrounding areas of smart city would cost you an average of 40laks, for which you shall if lucky fetch you a monthly rental of nothing more than 8000 for a 3BHK, the real estate developers says it’s the finest investment one can make. Does it?

Let me not blame? Today I have two food outlets, in the city, one successful outdoor catering unit, and an advertising and brand management consultancy. It would not have happened if I was not in Kerala. It will need a great leader and a great visionary to make Kerala and good place to do business in.

I dream of a Kerala, which is clean, which has no strike, which has good tarred motor able roads and a lovely place to live.

Hisham Kabir