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Unique India...you say?

As I sit in front of media today, i am bombarded with ANALYSIS OF INDIA – India, Today as compared to yesterday, India, what it can be tomorrow.
Expectations are high and so are the theories. That
India has developed and grown and is one of the emerging superpowers is one of the main conclusions. I will not dwell more on these - one can read more than enough whenever a magazine/newspaper or net is opened.
What I ask is, is it that there seems to be more focus on
India because I am in India or is that the general state of the world?
In the pharma industry (where I am) I can believe this. After all, it is one of the cheapest sources of quality products today, though
China is catching up fast. Every pharma MNC has its eyes trained on India for any opportunity - with patents act being activated, India is Prime Locality. And it is understandable – with a highly trained huge population, who is also English speaking, and asks for low pay, and is ready to work any hours…well… I wouldn’t disagree!
But, for other industries, is it the same? Is it really true that for anything MNC’s are just WAITING to come to India, or does India happen to be just one of the countries that these companies plan to go to, and since we are in India we hear more about India?
India really the up and coming Superpower? Or is it just that out of the few countries where there seems to be some hope of milking the market (whatever there is) India and China are the only ones. I mean, Hell, how many people do you hear talking about Africa? and Australia is developed enough! You can’t possibly milk that measly population any more than they already are fleeced!
So, given that most MNC’s already have gone to Europe, USA, Canada, Japan and some other countries, they think where do we go next?
Asia is the obvious answer with its teeming billions. Here, they think - hmm where should we go? China! But will it be profitable enough? So then, we should go to the other markets in Asia -but- aren’t they too small? So where do we go next? Who is it that can be the other 'opinion leader' for Asia? China ...and yes! India! And can u believe this; they are actually allowing us in now! So for lack of a better place, they come to India, and we of course we Indians are pleased at the attention shower.
So then you have companies making us feel even more 'special'. Marketing in
India is different they say and brood, while their tentacles dig into the soil. We can’t use our strategies of home countries here they say. I ask - don’t u have to tailor strategies for every market? Don’t tell me you dint have to tweak ur US plans for Europe and Europe plans for US. Heck! Even for Germany to France you have to re-develop plans. So what is all this great analysis that strategists and columnists do about 'uniqueness' of Indian market? I mean, there are articles by Mc Kinsey on this!
Sure, we got zillions of languages and millions of religions, but is it really that diverse?

Is India really as unique as we Indians think it is? Sure we got a huge population (we cannot deny that), sure we got a big English speaking majority, and sure, we are middle class. However, are we that special? Or is it our 15 years of fame, till these MNC’s find another country? I think that is the case. Yes, India is growing, yes, we are developing. But is it over-hype, or is it real?

With changes in regulations and advertising in politics emerging in India, it is only natural that some aspects get over emphasised and glamorised. It is only a phase, and will pass soon…if not, well, Indians, Rejoice! For you are in the limelight, and you are Truly unique!

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( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
31st Mar, 2005 17:47 (UTC)
Yep, unique just like everybody else.
I'd say we seem to have this Western approval seeking urge in our psyche. Our media also loves to play up the hype. Any person of Indian origin makes it big-the media goes overboard-like somehow we should feel proud of what people who have long since left India, and have come up and succeeded in other countries, have achieved. I refer you to Amartya Sen winning the Nobel and Kalpana Chawla going into space. With the latter, we waxed eloquent as though she was an Indian astronaut and we had sent her into space! Whenever any offbeat Indian movie gets released (Black or Lagaan)-everyone starts seeking Oscar nomination-as though they are the paragons of judgement when it comes to movies.

Given the above, it's hardly surprising that we feel extra special at the attention given to us by MNCs. The market rules, and the day China or other places offer more perceived competitive advantage, we will be cast aside in their favor.
31st Mar, 2005 19:38 (UTC)
I d say that as well
we indians seem to be still stuck in the image of the raj and worship white skin, why is western approval required at all?.. In any case any mnc coming here is doing so with purely a speculative and exploitative intent,rather than helping our cause. Let mnc's pledge that they will earmark a certain sum for development, possibly adopt villages towns, that their employees come from. U want to show intent, dont talk about it, demonstrate in deeds.
India will be a formidable country, soon, maybe not in our time, but our day will come, but begging for f16s and f18s from USA will only start the process of selling ourselves out to them, and ultimately give them the military leverage in the indian ocean that they have lacked forever.
1st Apr, 2005 04:26 (UTC)
Re: I d say that as well
Uh..they've had Diego Garcia for ages...
It would help their cause to setup shop in Lakshadweep or the Nicobar islands (Tsunamis, do your worst then!)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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