every moment that passes has a message but we tend to distort the guide of the moment to the tune of our thinking that it becomes irrelevant..we misinterpret individuality then but we seldom realize..but the message remains the same..we need to go beyond..alas! we seldom go..
The best way to know the self is feeling oneself at the moments of reckoning. The feeling of being alone, just with your senses, may lead you to think more consciously. More and more of such moments may sensitize ‘you towards you’, towards others. We become regular with introspection and retrospection. We get ‘the’ gradual connect to the higher self we may name Spirituality or God or just a Humane Conscious. We tend to get a rhythm again in life. We need to learn the art of being lonely in crowd while being part of the crowd. A multitude of loneliness in mosaic of relations! One needs to feel it severally, with conscience, before making it a way of life. One needs to live several such lonely moments. One needs to live severallyalone.
Monday, 4 January 2016
HMT: ‘SYNONYMOUS’ TO ‘ANTIQUE’
It is a favourite symbol to get
nostalgic for many in India - especially for our parents or people in their
age-group - and even for many of us.
While it happened to be in
possession of Indians across the nation in their generation, we used to have
our hands on it regularly – and we know why.
We grew up watching and reading
its advertisements - and also of its 'much bigger' brother - and though not
many of us (in fact I don't know any) were game for it, they had respect value
for the brand name and felt sad that how the government apathy had killed an
iconic brand that had once become synonymous with a product that we had so long
ago assimilated with our life styles.
That is HMT. Hindustan Machine
A brand that was once the alternative
name of watches in India, right from its inception in 1960.
HMT tractors were another
significant product line of the company established by the Government of India
that used to echo even in our backdrop – especially with Doordarshan
advertisements in those days of ‘no satellite or private television channels’.
And that was the sole reason, the
strong brand recall, due to its glorified even if distant past (irrespective of
its nihilistic present and future), that I spontaneously found myself, first
looking at, and then going inside to make some queries - in this HMT showroom
(exclusive HMT showroom) at Jhandewalan Extension, near Connaught Place (the
market complex was named ‘Anarkali Market Complex or so).
It was the first HMT exclusive
HMT showroom that I had encountered in my life. The brand had started losing
its market share and had become almost irrelevant by the last years of the last
decade of the 20th Century. And so, when I saw its company operated
showroom in 2011, in Delhi, I felt surprised and curious that the government
was still bleeding taxpayers by continuing the brand that it so badly botched
Though I always felt sad for the
brand, even more worrying aspect was its continuance after it had lived its
life (or it had been killed effectively). After all, the pragmatic management
in a socially responsible nation required that such operations be discontinued
immediately and at the same time, their employees be adjusted elsewhere.
So, when I came to know by
employees of that showroom that it was one of the few remaining showrooms and
was slated to bring down its shutters permanently, I felt a sense of déjà vu.
That was four years ago – in 2011.
That was my last active encounter with the brand – with HMT – the chance
discovery that had come after almost 20 years.
This January 1, in 2016, when I
first scrolled my smartphone for news updates of the day – I saw HMT splashed
again – the news stories about how its Haldwani plant in Uttarakhand is
restarting on January 1 to complete the last order of around Rs. 1.5 crore that
HMT got from its Bengaluru office, where the outfit was headquartered.
Well, that was again a nostalgic
news break, and every news report carried it in the same fashion – and the
first thought that came to my mind was about this chance ‘discovery’ some four
years ago – and the second one was about my father’s HMT watches that he kept
as ‘antique possessions’.
The first thing that I did was I
read up all related news reports. The second thing, I called up father. The
third thing, I googled YouTube for HMT advertisements. And the fourth and the
logical thing that concluded that morning’s exercise, before I am writing this,
was reading again about how a strong brand was made obsolete and why the governments
should not venture into territories like watch-making or cloth-spinning.
Like many other brands promoted
and built by the government of India – HMT too had that free fall trajectory
where no real efforts can be made to arrest the dwindling fortunes – because that
is simply not the government’s job to do.
Yes, every government is ‘the
timekeeper to the nation it represents’ but it doesn’t mean it starts making watches.
HMT is an example what happens
when it tries so – that a strong brand
always lives with this imminent danger that it can die soon – that it can soon
become ‘synonymous’ to ‘antique’ – in a matter of few years.