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Vol 5 Issue No.55 May - June 2016

A Regulatory Roadmap for Small & Medium NBFCs Sri. V P Nandakumar MD & CEO Manappuram Finance LTD.

sKODA SUPERB

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Printed by: Ajit Ravi Published by: Ajit Ravi Owned by: Ajit Ravi Printed at: S T Reddiar P.B. No: 3627, Veekshanam Road, Cochin Published at: Pegasus, L5-106 Changampuzha Nagar Kalamassery Ernakulam-682 033 e-mail: editor@uniquetimes.org uniquetimesindia@gmail.com Ph:0484 3242220, 6555533, 4025666 Mob:+91 98460 50283, 94470 50283 Editor Ajit Ravi Sub-Editor Vignesh Associate Editor Ravi Saini Editor-In-charge Jebitha Ajit Legal Advisor Adv. Sreelatha Parameswaran Correspondents Dr. Thomas Nechupadam Vivek Venugopal- Quarter Mile Bejoy George Amrutha V Kumar Marketing BAHRAIN PRESTIGE MARKETING Tel: +971 55 2000933 Email: gopal@prestigemarketing.in UAE Tamquest Entertainments LLC P.O. Box 232886, Dubai, United Arab Emirates Mr.Riju Rajan: +971 555776966 Email: riju@tamquestevents.com Tamil Nadu Andhrapradesh & Karnataka PEGASUS Ph: 09288800999 Kerala Sunilkumar NN Your wing Photographer Ashique Hassan Creative Design PEGASUS Cover Photograph Ms. Ankita Kharat 2016. 2016 4 Miss Queen of IndiaMay-June

Editorial S

wami Vivekananda’s famous quote about success going like this: "Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life--think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success." These words bring to mind the name of a company called Pegasus. “Pegasus” is synonymous with the beauty contest & event management in Asia. Last week, when Pegasus was announcing the new winners of Manappuram Miss Queen of India 2016 pageant, it was the completion of a decade long- success in the world of glitter and glamour for Pegasus. Read the special interview with Ankita Karat, Miss Queen of India 2016. She sums up success into hard work, talent, dedication, confidence and passion. In his column, Sri. Nandakumar, CEO and Managing Director, Manappuram, puts forward a road map for NBFCs. He wants to keep NBFC’s from falling into the same pitfall where microfinance companies got into and suggest some policy decisions to save NBFC’s. We have all regular staples of travel, cinema, technology, health, beauty, book review, business diary, expert columns etc. which take you to new experiences. Enjoy reading


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CONTENTS 12

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12 A Regulatory Roadmap for Small & Medium NBFCs 16 Social Entrepreneurships vital for every economy

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22 Manappuram Miss Queen of India 2016 28 An Interview with an artist-turned-model, Miss Queen of India 2016 34 The psyche of a stock market trader

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40 Gadgets 42 Recipes 46 Summer is here; take better care of your skin

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48 unforgettable destination in eastern europe: Croatia 54 A Luxury car from Skoda

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UNIQUE DIARY

‘Give It Up’s’ can take it back after one year: says Minister

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hose folks who have voluntarily given up the LPG subsidy can take it back after a year, says Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan. The minster claims that his government has not yet used the income tax details for forcefully cancelling the subsidy. Earlier, there were strict orders that those people who are earning more than ten lakh per year must give up their subsidy. On the wake of rising rumours that once we give our subsidy we cannot take it back, the authorities came forward with proper clarification. It is learned that this is a move to strengthen the ‘give it up’ campaign. So far, nearly one crore and thirteen lakh people have given up their LPG subsidy.

Centre to kick out inefficient contactors, terminates three big-projects

If the power goes out, business stops... whether you sell roses or you're a big manufacturer. Eric Johnston

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he centre government has decided to terminate inefficient contractors because of their poor performance. So far, the government has terminated nearly three mega road projects. As per reports, around three thousand crore rupee has been earmarked for the projects. The terminated projects are Rohtak-Jind project, Haridwar-Dehradun project, and Ranchi-Jamshedpur project. It is learned that the NHAI has also given warning to some contactors and asked them to improve their work quality. As per reports, the NHAI is scheduled to convene a meeting next month to discuss the quality of other ongoing projects. Anyway, this is not the first time that the NHAI is performing an extreme step.

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Singapore Airlines plans to introducebudget flights in India

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he Singapore Airlines is planning to introduce new budget flights in India. Currently, SIA is the largest flight network operating in our country. It is said that the budget flights will start its function between Singapore-Chennai route and SingaporeAmritsar route shortly. In addition, the conglomerate is expected to announce a new route between Singapore and Jaipur in coming days. It is learned that the introduction of new budget flights will affect the existing budget flights in the country and will increase competition. As per information, SIA holds nearly forty nine percentage shares in Vistara. In addition, it holds fifty one percentage shares in Tata. Anyway, it is found that Vistara may also introduce international budget flights soon.

India set to become fourth largest solar market soon

Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do. Don't wish it were easier; wish you were better. Jim Rohn

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ndia is expected to become the fourth largest solar market of the world after the addition of nearly five GW in 2016. As per reports, our countries successfully overtake some of the developed countries like France, UK and Germany to achieve this ambitious position.The report was released by a renewable energy firm, named Bridge of India. For the last twelve month, our country is witnessing a rapid growth in solar market due to the increasing demand. As per report, the reduction of cost has also contributed to the rapid growth of the market. Globally, Asian countries are becoming the largest market of the solar goods like solar panel. Our country already has nearly six GW utility capacities. In addition, we have around seven hundred and forty MW roof top capacities.

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UNIQUE DIARY

Asian Development Bank offers financial assistance to Smart City projects

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he Asian Development Bank has agreed to extent financial assistance to the upcoming Smart city projects of our country. Recently, the centre government announced that they are planning to transform nearly twenty cities into Smart Cities. As an initial phase, it has started their work in eight prominent cities, including Jabalpur, Jaipur, Ludhiana, Surat, Pune, Ahmedabad, Bhubaneswar, and Ahmedabad. According to reports, the Ministry of Urban Development has asked the respective officials to prepare a detailed plan for submitting in ADB and World Bank. It is learned that the Asian Development Bank is willing to provide nearly one billion as finical assistance to the multi-million dollar project.

IT hiring may fall nearly twenty percentages on this fiscal: Report

There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure. Colin Powell

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T hiring will fall nearly twenty percentages this fiscal, says reports. It seems that top companies are currently focusing on automation so they are not willing to improve their human resource. In contrary to the present reality, a survey authority on last year had predicted that the job opportunity in the IT section would increase in 2016. As per their report, the software conglomerates would hire nearly 2.75 people this year, which is a pretty higher rate compared to last year’s rate, which was around 2.3 lakh. Anyway, the prediction has lost its credibility, especially after the unexpected fall in job hiring. However, Nasscom claims that the fall in hiring rate would not affect the productivity or revenue of a firm.

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BUSINESS

Shri V.P.Nandakumar MD & CEO Manappuram Finance Ltd.

Speaking from experience, Manappuram Finance was listed on the BSE in 1995 but for quite some time thereafter, we were a relatively small player. The tipping point came in 200708, when PE players like Sequoia invested in the company. That was the trigger that allowed us to move to a higher orbit.

A Regulatory Roadmap for Small & Medium NBFCs

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ver the years nonbanking financial companies (NBFCs) have played a vital role in India’s financial system. NBFCs have evolved considerably in terms of its size, operations, technological sophistication and have entered into the new areas of financial services and products. Although total number of NBFCs have come down from 51,929 in 1997 to 11,700 as of March 2016, aggregate assets of systematically important non-deposit taking NBFCs and deposit taking NBFCs have grown from Rs 700 billion at the end of March 1998 to Rs 15 trillion at the end of December 2015. The share of NBFC assets as a percentage of scheduled commercial banks’ assets has increased from 7 per cent in 1998 to 14.8 per cent in March 2015. NBFCs have been playing a supplementary role to banks in financial intermediation and

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a complementary role in the financial inclusion agenda set by the government. Although they perform the essential role of credit delivery mechanism parallel to the banking system they are not at par with the banks in the matter of regulatory norms. In fact NBFCs, especially the small and medium sized, face continuing challenges in the matter of access to funds for growth and for meeting prudential capital norms, besides other challenges. Institutional Finance The key hurdle faced by small and medium NBFCs pursuing growth is the lack of access to institutional finance. Even when it is available, it is rarely available in adequate measure. The most common source of funding is through bank finance. But to this day promoters of small and medium NBFC seeking bank finance are invariably asked to provide collateral security, which many are


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unable to comply with. In addition, banks insist on credit rating which, as things stand, discriminates against smaller players. The fact is, there are no small or medium NBFCs with AAA rating. Indeed, even getting the investment grade rating is a challenge to most small and medium NBFCs. Credit rating agencies appear to use the same model to rate all NBFCs irrespective of size. As a result, small and medium NBFCs who constitute about 90 percent of the sector (in terms of numbers) are unable to get investment grade ratings in spite of good track record and steady growth. The way out, therefore, is to prescribe a special dispensation for small and medium NBFCs with a revamped rating methodology that would not penalise them for lack of size. Of course, SME Rating Agency of India (SMERA) gives ratings for small and medium NBFCs but unfortunately their ratings are not given much weightage by banks and have failed to take off. Beyond bank finance, small and medium NBFCs have very limited sources for raising funds. Earlier, small and medium NBFCs could raise money easily by issue of retail NCDs but RBI has now narrowed this window significantly. At the same time, raising funds through public issue of NCDs is also not a viable option for most small and medium NBFCs. Issue of Commercial Paper (CP) is again dependent on credit rating. Therefore, a long standing demand of NBFCs was to have a refinance window especially for asset backed lending. With MUDRA Bank being set up as refinancing agency to cater to the needs of MSME sector, it appears to be a solution to this long standing requirement of NBFCs. MUDRA Bank’s eligibility criteria for availing Refinancing by Banks MFIs and NBFCs makes all RBI registered NBFCs eligible. More over small NBFCs not having external credit rating but possessing satisfactory

borrowing arrangements with any Scheduled Commercial Bank for a minimum of 2 years; and net NPA not higher than 3 percent are also eligible. Thus it can potentially free small NBFCs from the burden of seeking credit rating but one will have to wait and watch to see how the promise translates into reality. Raising Capital Raising capital, and maintaining it at the prescribed levels, is another problem area for small and medium NBFCs. Avenues to raise capital should be increased. To start with, at least the medium (if not the small) sized NBFCs should be encouraged to list on the stock exchange. Earlier, it was easy for smaller NBFCs to list on the regional stock exchanges but now that these are defunct, this option is not there anymore. We should look at ways to make the sector attractive for investments by private equity players. Private Equity (PE) can play a vital role in raising capital for small and medium NBFCs. Speaking from experience, Manappuram Finance was listed on the BSE in 1995 but for quite some time thereafter, we were a relatively small player. The tipping point came in 2007-08, when PE players like Sequoia invested in the company. That was the trigger that allowed us to move to a higher orbit. Dual regulation Various associations representing NBFCs and industry experts have appealed for a level playing field with other banks and financial institutions (FIs), especially in the matter of overlap or dual regulation of NBFCs. The Finance Industry Development Council (FIDC), which is an association representing NBFCs in India, has sought exemption for RBI registered NBFCs from the State Money Lenders Act. While dual regulation is a concern faced by all NBFCs, it is particularly worrying for small and medium NBFCs who usually have a presence restricted to one state or a few states. For example, if any state

government imposes any adverse regulation, a large NBFC with a nationwide footprint would be able to absorb the impact, but a small NBFC based entirely in that one state will likely sink. Pricing The pricing policy of NBFCs is regulated by the RBI which has ruled out capping of lending rates. However, keeping in mind the setbacks suffered by microfinance in India due to the negative publicity around perceived high interest rates, it will be prudent to place preemptive checks on NBFCs too. For instance, in the case of small and medium NBFCs that have been extended support through Mudra Bank, the RBI may consider a margin cap of 10 percent or so, similar to that applicable to microfinance institutions (MFIs) today. This margin cap will be the difference between the Mudra lending rate and ultimate cost to borrower. The margin would help in protecting interest of NBFCs against vulnerable borrowers and, at the same time, provide scope for decent returns. To conclude Small and medium NBFCs are the last mile financiers through which finance flows to productive but unfunded sectors of the informal economy. In a country where financial inclusion is a challenge, they contribute to financial inclusion at a much lower cost than banks. Also, because their business model relies on connect with local market conditions, they make it a point to employ local people, drawing their talent from the same socio economic strata as their customer base. With their regional focus and concentration, they have better knowledge and understanding of local market conditions, and they can take more risk. For these reasons, small and medium NBFCs deserve to flourishď Ź (V.P. Nandakumar is MD & CEO of Manappuram Finance Ltd. and Chairman of CII - Kerala State Council.)

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BUSINESS

Rajesh Nair, Director, Ernst & Young LLP Rajesh is also the President of the Kerala Chapter of TiE Global

The ‘not for profit’ tag line is used to lend a legitimacy or being above petty finances and profiteering. While we can endlessly debate whether they are all successful, a lot of marquee experiences of some of the organisations like Rotary, Lions,TiEand many morehave proven that significant good work can happen by utilising this structure.

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Social Entrepreneurships vital for every economy

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or several decades now, entrepreneurs have been doing a fabulous job helping solving social, environmental, and polity issues. These are smart men and women who have found solutions for problems which affects large populations and have been in various areas. A lot of such organisations have used the structure of non-government or quasi-government organisations, and also prefer to adopt the ‘non-profit’ or ‘not for profit’ route. They have also been seen as institutions with a conscience and doing the ‘right thing’ for everyone’s sake. The ‘not for profit’ tag line is used to lend a legitimacy or being above petty finances and profiteering. While we can endlessly debate whether they are all successful, a lot of marquee experiences of some of the organisations like Rotary, Lions,Tie and many more have proven that significant good work can happen by utilising this structure. There are continuing debates over who is a social entrepreneur. There is no consensus on the definition of

social entrepreneurship, as so many different sorts of fields and disciplines are associated with social entrepreneurship, and it perhaps does not matter. Anyone with a conscience, be it a social activist, philanthropist or even a set of individuals, who are trying to solve a common problem or other socially oriented practitioners, are referred to as social entrepreneurs. Even corporate today are actively sponsoring and leading projects under corporate social responsibility. The question is not whether they are able to attract the right talent, the question is about whether they are able to attract ‘the best young talent’. The backbone of these organisations are always successful people from different walks of life, who want to ‘give back to the society’! The bulk of the young talent they attract are usually, trainees, interns, PhD students – who finesse their skills, polish their resumes and move on to the ‘other side’! The point of contention is –this cannot be like ‘drafting for a year in the army, doing social work in a

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remote village in India, or teaching poor students in your spare time! It has to be looked and evaluated from the lens of economic viability and sustainability that we use to evaluate traditional businesses. Efficiency, agility, strategy cannot be sacrificed at the altar resorting to the ‘excuse’ of ‘not for profit’. Every venture has to be FINANCIALLY VIABLE! The business plans have to be as robust as the plans for a commercial venture. We cannot just apply the principle of ‘MORE’ – be it more impact, more solutions, more coverage to these business plans. A very astute CXO once told me ‘it is easy to drive a guideline like 20 % more than last year for inward monetary flow and 15 % less for outward flow! He said “It is easier to communicate and align everybody!” I see a point in this kind of ‘alignment’. Perhaps, the integration seems easier between

different departments. But, this is never the optimal way to do it. We call it a ‘Business Model’ implying a sense of optimality and accepting the fact that it is the best outcome with the plethora of endemic constraints. The other facet of the phrase implies a sort of replicability that can be used as a guideline for any future planning and strategic pondering. Unfortunately, we use these models to justify ‘More’ and prepare the roadmap for ‘MORE’. With this philosophy, we encumber ourselves with size or the urge to grow bigger. The fait accompli is also the logic that ‘we live in a world of chaos and uncertainty and the best way to counter these are to grow organically or in-organically!’ We often compromise stability in our models in this quest and shift the centre of gravity of the organisation too perilous level, where a strong headwind can make you wobble and support-

Efficiency, agility, strategy cannot be sacrificed at the altar resorting to the ‘excuse’ of ‘not for profit’. Every venture has to be FINANCIALLY VIABLE!

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The success of social ventures can also get the best of talent to scout for social problems to solve and also create that heavenly mental satisfaction of ‘Doing well by doing public good’.

ing tail winds are far and rare. Social ventures are as important as any other business venture and more so because of the social impact that they can create. The best talent will look into this area when these organisations look at themselves as companies preparing ground for scaling, effectiveness and long term sustenance. Making money is not evil. It feeds stomachs, generates jobs, and encourages entrepreneurship. The success of social ventures can also get the best of talent to scout for social problems to solve and also create that heavenly mental satisfaction of ‘Doing well by doing public good’. Even a seemingly technical area like architecture is a beehive for social entrepreneurship. When you see a dilapidated heritage building, you realise the importance of ‘pure architecture’ to infrastructure, society at large and to working and

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living spaces. As a layman, architecture for me just means, science of creating great living and collaborating spaces, inventiveness to use the local environs and material, avoid the egregious error of imitating great structures elsewhere. The brick and mortar are just a small component of the whole play. A great architect like a great social entrepreneur builds an ecosystem for every member of the team to shine much like saying – enable every brick to fulfil its ambition! An exhibition like the Kochi Biennale has aesthetically prompted the need to restore some of our heritage structures because they were not just historical evidences but a treatise in community living and harmonious interplay with the environment. They say that Kerala has 3016 shades of green in its vegetation; this for us is a mere statistic and of no particular interests other than recalling it in a lecture or an article. But,the importance of

this statement lies far beyond our assessment. It is like the number of tigers in a jungle. This metric, zoologists say, is a great metric (perhaps the best) to see the ‘health of a forest’. It is so interesting that architecture is perhaps one of best evidences of history and the study of anthropology. There is even a business case for companies to build related or perhaps even unrelated businesses to promote various social causes. Perhaps social entrepreneurship could be a compulsory curriculum in schools and colleges (a lot of colleges do this already). Students get to identify problems which they want to solve and figure out structures of problem solving and delivery, which helps them sharpens their education uptake, skills and give the satisfaction of doing more than just the ‘boy scout’ activity of the day!


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Manappuram

Miss Queen of India

2016

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egasus, perhaps the sole name that quint essentially ticks in the event management world of Kerala for more than a decade now, had successfully celebrated their prestigious brand event- Manappuram Miss Queen of India-on last April.

Mr. Najam and Mrs. Jeenu Nazeer. With disarming wit and the incredible ease with, they conquered the audience’s heart.

As usual, a starry and sensational night by itself, it reinstated fashion and glamour a notch higher than ever.

Meanwhile, the response of the audience was remarkable and mind boggling. To add on feathers on to this crown, the judgement panel was bejewelled by none other than– Noyonita Lodh, Niyati Joshi, Dr. Rajeev Pillai, Toshma Biju and Deepa Chari.

The much celebrated event was commenced with very joyful anchoring by the eminent

Smashing and gorgeous models walked the ramp from every nook and corner of the country, with

conviction and poise, aiming at the much coveted title of Miss Queen of India 2016. This year, Ms. Ankita Kharat, hails from Mumbai, made history by winning this enviable crown. At the same time, Ms. Rashmita Gowda, who hails from Mumbai, became the First Runner up when Bangalorean lady Ms. Aishwarya Dinesh banged Second Runner up crown. The winner took home an unmatchable and beautiful gold

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plated crown designed by Mr.& Mrs. Prakashan Parakkat. The title winner won 1.5 Lakhs rupee awarded by Manappuram Group. Around sixty thousand rupee was awarded to the first runner up and nearly forty thousand rupee was awarded against second runner up. Notably, the former was awarded by Wow Factor and the

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latter was awarded by Beaumonde the Fern. Apart from the title winners, there are numerous subtitle winners. They are Miss Queen North : Shifali Arora, Miss Queen West: Ankita Kharat, Miss Queen East: Veineinem Singson, Miss South India: Meera Mitun, Miss Beautiful Hair: Veineinem Singson, Miss Beautiful Smile: P.S Prarthana, Miss Beautiful Skin: Asmitha

Kaushik, Miss Beautiful Face: P.S Prarthana, Miss Beautiful Eyes: Rashmitha Gowda, Miss Congeniality: Shifali Arora, Miss Personality: Archana Ravi, Miss Cat Walk: Devika Dhanyuni, Miss Perfect 10: Ankita Kharat, Miss Talent: Rashmita Gowda, Miss Viewer’s choice: Veineinem Singson and Miss Photogenic: Stuti Chopra. This renowned event was held at Gokulam Convention Centre,


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Kaloor, Cochin. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration, if I say you’d yourself feel a star the moment you enter the gala event. The ramp was designed aesthetically to emanate the feel and pride of this desirable title. It’s more than meets the eye– through Miss Queen of India 2015, Pegasus event makers revealed yet another altitude of professionalism and event-management to learn from. Auditions were held at different parts of the country, to make sure the right talent and representations reached the final pageant. Impeccable grooming sessions made sure that the flaws were taken care of and the confidence level of these beautiful girls elevated. Strategically placed three rounds tested beauty and intelligence of the contestants. The first round, the designer saree round, saw stunning models decked up in ethnic jewellery and ethereal sarees; you couldn’t take your eyes off from. First round aimed at assessing catwalk, choice of attire, how they spoke beguiling and how they carried themselves on the ramp. It reminded and made you proud of the vast diversity our country holds in terms of looks, appearances, sensibilities, cultures, designs and perspectives. Still all of them felt a unity in them– something that Miss Queen of India groomers have consciously instilled during the Grooming sessions. The

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glitzy evening saw them change over to dashing gowns or the second round. The tantalizing silhouettes you saw next swaying through the ramp takes your breath away. Each round saw eliminations and the competition got tighter in every sense. When the world watched them finger-biting, one thing that astonishes you is how much positivity and encouragement those girls were reflecting on stage. Each round got better when the third round saw the theme as Red. If I may take liberty to say this- It’s true that you look the sexiest in red. They showed it’s not about what they wear, but who they are! Extravagant was their attitude, more than their outfits! Each round was mesmerizingly broke for intervals for the girls to change for their next stunning performance. As icing on the cake, came spectacular performances by distinguished dancers with their very confident and trained moves. The famed Deepa Kartha and team, BonyKavya team and Dhwani Tarangmoved to compelling music and enthralling steps. Put altogether, Miss Queen of India 2016 elevated the event experience to the next level of pleasure and excitement. It was indeed a satisfying sensational feast for your senses. Eagerly waiting for next year’s surprises from the makers of this fantastic event! 


Congratulations Winners

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An Interview with an artist-turned-model,

Miss Queen of India 2016 A

nkita Karat, hails from the commercial capital, Mumbai, was crowned prestigious Miss Queen of India title 2016. She is a trained singer, dancer and, certainly, a talented model.

Passion: From childhood, I was into dancing, Dance is something which makes you strong inside and outside to set you free. I've completed my 5 years of Bharatnatyam and 3 years of Indian classical music.

Unique Times got an opportunity to articulate a mini-interview about this ‘Miss Queen of India’ and here it is:-

My heart and soul belong to music as I love playing instruments like Guitar, keyboard, and harmonium.

Miss Queen of India Experience: It was undoubtedly the best days and pageant experience which I had so far. 'Miss Queen of India' is not just a title for me but it is a platform where a girl can live her passion and groom herself to the best and make her country proud by achieving something to inspire others.

My passion for singing & modelling is everlasting. My parents have always considered me as an artist.

Winning moment: I clearly didn't expect. I was nervous when they took a long pause to announce the result! I've literally got buffer flies in my stomach when they finally declared the title. However, the winning moment was incredible and so unexpected for me.

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Pegasus: There are no words to define how wonderfully a couple Mr Ajit Ravi and Jebi ma’am lead and organise the event. My experience with them was amazing and I'm truly blessed working with people like them. Future plans: I'm the one who doesn't decide every step but at the same time I know exactly what I want! For now, I know one thing that I'm hardworking and dedicated to my work so

with that belief I am going to go ahead and spread positivity around. Miss Asia expectations: I believe that if you truly want something in life you will get it by the right amount of hard work, talent, dedication, confidence and passion. I will always give my best and try to grow everyday, so I am looking forward to have a great experience in Miss Asia too. Role model: I believe everyone you meet has something to teach you, I always take so much new from the people I see, talk, and meet. There is so much knowledge to gain in this life from each person, but my true inspiration has to be my father! I've seen a man who took over so high in business from zero by his hard work, dedication and passion towards it, I learn so much from my father every day, I learned not to give up, to be confident and always be a boss, ‘he was’,‘he is’ and ‘he will’ be my role model for my entire life!


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FEATURE

Vinod Kumar

Perfection

S Perfection must be researched in the backdrop of scale and size. Indicator of perfection can be studied inside transactions. So we can make categories of scale, size, transaction and turnover to measure perfection.

he wanted to look perfect. The endeavor of this young lady was to look perfect. So she splurged on new dresses. But it was borrowed money. She used her father’s credit card. The annoyed father questioned, daughter on her habit of spending his money. She ate in best restaurants and wore expensive clothes, Jewellery and accessories. She told her father. “These idea of perfection was instilled in me by you. You insisted that all that is yours, in effect also belongs to me”. That the daughter is also owner of your property and wealth. You ensured that I learnt the value of hygiene and health and therefore, fine dining. You put pressure on me to dress well, appear sociable and so I am compelled to buy branded clothing. In short, the father made the daughter into a luxury connoisseur. He taught to her, an idea of perfection. So what is perfection?

three year old enjoys your embrace and then, he is seated on your lap. Instead of punishment and rebuke, your response is tender and looks befitting to the prank of a three year old. This is because; the innocence of this child is visible to you. But at this age these behaviors are innocent because of ignorance. So such behaviors can be categorized as mini micro behaviors.

Perfection must be researched in the backdrop of scale and size. Indicator of perfection can be studied inside transactions. So we can make categories of scale, size, transaction and turn over to measure perfection.

There are severe definitions, articulations and labeling. Nothing can escape being assessed and analyzed. Calibrations, measurements, and corroborative evidences are essential to win your case. All these are characteristics of the micro segment. Nobody is free from the confinement of the segment. All people are inevitably tutored about the pros and cons of this sector of the micro band. We simply have to learn it by doing activities. There are

Mini micro A boy of three year old, rudely splashes a glass of water on your face. And then this action of anger from three year old, invokes care and kindness and attention on the child. The

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Micro Next level is classified as micro behaviors. These features, dictates the transactions between people. We are bound by procedures, processes and protocols. Nothing can be procured without its due method. All systems are respected. There is a great measure of compulsion, to comply with rules and laws. Our interactions are within stipulated confines of permitted behaviors. All activities are recorded, reported and registered.

obstacles that push back


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and blow back to our endeavors. But the skill is to move through the challenges. There are no escapes from risks. The nuanced fractions and intricate attributes of trade, commerce, emotions, reasoning and rationale and societal studies are all lessons to be learnt in the micro level. Macro When you graduate out of this micro band of existence, we arrive at the macro sector. Very few people have access to this macro segment. These people are the ones who thoroughly participated in the details of the micro band. They

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mastered the art of transactions. They exposed themselves to the science of negotiations and deals. In the macro level, you can experience the freedom. The sophistication of the macro people allows them to write the script. They have authority to direct the play. The macro segment authors the way, the policies that are then given to the micro people. The macro people take all the accountabilities of actions as well as their inactions. The macro existence has no luxury of complaining or accusing or alleging other people. This is the chapter where all the bucks

have to stop. Mega macro From the macro people, then the escalation is to mega macro. People know this level of mega macro as prayers, divinity or even worship. The mega macro is the presence of Omni. When all else fails, then they seek solace and relief from the intangible dimension of the mega macro. Some even claim to experience miracles. These esoterisms can be labeled as the galaxy of mega macro. Most world leaders operate from this pulpit. The lucky are those for whom all levels are within their line of


times the free will has to relent. The subjects get exalted to an ethereal existence, so that it can be worshipped. These destinations of pilgrimages also thrive economically and flourish socially. Mega macro scale of operation cannot come in the confines as an entity that can be measured or defined. We can only attempt to capture these unprecedented imaginations into our understanding. But it is certain that all these levels has an existence and therefore is meritous. They deserve a deep dive study. Midmix In between the level of micro existence and then the macro is a peculiar realm. You may call it the midmix mind. The assertions from here are weak because they lack convictions. It is like you left your home but did not arrive at a destination. More madness is in the facade and there is no method. This realm of midmix mind is of doubts and confusion. The symptoms of restlessness, mood swings and incoherent livings are common behaviors of these people. Disorderly and disruptive actions only enhance the entropy. Midmix mind needs compassion and kind handling so that it can get back its focus to be of steady and stable mind. It needs to be tutored on the exercise to settle and then drive to the macro existence.

vision. These leaders must express wisdom in taking decision. Their verdicts must espouse justice and fairness. Here there is no margin for suspicion, distrust and caution. You have heard the adage.” Ceasers wife must be above any suspicion.” The mega macro level is invoked by the pious people. They apportion sanctity and serenity to an unseen provider. The devoted people will gravitate to invite merci and grace from the skies. The mortals look to take refuge in the sacredness of providence. Here, the destiny prevail and at most

So, we have sorted the size and scale of behaviors into mini micro, micro. Midmix mind, macro and mega macro. The cultures are bound by checks and balances. But the regulations of the micro world cannot capture the imagination of the macro people. The tutelages to the mini micro is futile in the sector of micro. Similarly the perfections in micro segment are all neutralized at the level of macro people. These ultra-leaders seem to enjoy much freedom from vagaries of formalities and regimentations. For better clarity, the example of an applicant to NDA, an enrolled student at National Defense

Academy, a general in Army and the Defense minister are all within one aspiration. That of defense of nation. But each are bound by diverse levels of regimentation and freedom. Though all of them have similar culture, and vocabulary, yet the scale is the differentiator for intensity of exertion and level of relaxation. Because when these five levels are available, then one cannot be ever deprived of possibilities. Then infinite opportunities can be opened. We can eliminate any sense of being cornered or back against the wall. These are no dead ends and no bottle necks. Efforts must be channeled to exit, the limited point of view. All idea of perfections becomes erroneous. Many imperfections become legitimate. There is a way out of quagmires. There are levels beyond some assumptions of injustice. When this entire markup becomes distorted, then alone can there be the freedom from suicides. All people, whether broken relationship, farmer in debt or students pressured to secure great scores, can all choose to dive into freedom and opportunities.Therefore we may begin the spelling. Im’ perfect, prfect, prefct, prfxt or even perfect. Let us move on. The macro level demands that, you kick start inventions. The mature leaders will guide the backward and marginalized to be innovative. The parameter of perfection will be rewritten. Expensive dresses and appearance will not dictate the sense of achievement and accomplishment. The parents must revisit on the method that they teach their children to be perfect and disciplined. Innocence and intelligence must be encouraged that they exist together. Imperfections are really wholesome perfections. It’s all about matching with corresponding scale of existence. We can learn to enliven the mega macro, empower the macro and enable the micro level of transactions

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T

he adage goes that behind every successful man, there is always a woman. But who is behind the success of an entire nation? It is certainly its people. With this in mind, we present the link in India’s growth storythe Indian consumer.

As the global economies are becoming increasingly aware of consumer demand, emergence of countries like India and China as a potential pool was bound to take place. India becomes an attractive destination for global capital because of this reason.

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India as a country, or better put, as an investment destination,has been high up on the global radar- even before radars were actually invented. Since times immemorial, perhaps going as far back as Alexander the Great and Nadir Shah, India has always been seen as the golden eagle for its rich cultural heritage and abundant natural resources. While the rich alluvial soil has made it one of the largest producers of grains in the world, the country’s plateaus are replete with important minerals and ores. The nation’s geography spread over the high Himalayas to a massive coastline has further made this landmass richer as a nation and as an economy.However, the golden eagle did get chained and exploited as the shackles of imperialism tightened itself around its wings. Now, a lot of things have changed since the pre-independence era. As integrated India emerged from the shackles of the British rule after gaining independence in 1947, Indian leaders have worked over decades to bring the country to where it stands today. There was a slack in this short journey. Until 1990, capital inflows remained low because of the country’s socialist model, ‘license raj’ and bureaucracy. However, the scenario changed drastically

when the Congress government led by P. V. Narsimha Rao presented the historical budget of 1991-92 headed by the then Finance Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh. With Rao's mandate, Singh launched India into the global arena. Policies of International Monetary Fund (IMF) were implemented to rescue the, almost bankrupt,Indian financial system from economic collapse. With this historic budget, India stepped into the corridors of globalisation. Since then, the country has marched towards development to eventually restore its position as an investment destination. Now, the government’s leaders are leaving no stone unturned to keep the ball rolling. Through the course of this issue, we have tried to present to you precisely how the Indian leaders are working in this direction. To take the economy to the next level of growth, the government has introduced policies and programmes that aim to create a conducive and healthy business environment and bring capital inflows into various industries. Through this, the nation’s people have emerged as India’s biggest strength. Indian population, in its magnitude, promises a pool of young entrepreneurial workforceand a source of domestic demand. But the question is what has brought about this paradigmatic shift? When and how did this become about investment in consumption, so to say? It is here that we will take you back in time and give you a snapshot of how India as an investment destination could be located between production and consump-


The Indian Growth Story: A Citizen’s Chapter

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Here we will take you back in time and give you a snapshot of how India as an investment destination could be located between production and consumption.

tion. The Hypothesis To understand where it all began, it is enough to look at the process behind the production of a simple commodity. It all starts with an idea. The idea leads to the making of a product. The making leads to adding further details. This product moves through a distribution network. At the end of this supply chain, there lies the consumer. The reason behind India’s emergence as an investment destination lies in the folds of this chain. Needless to say, over the course of several centuries, individual nations or a few nations that predominated have systematically, if not consciously, developed one or the other aspect of this network. Invention to Creation

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As we mentioned before, it all begins with an idea. When Scottish inventor and mechanical engineer James Watt designed his version of steam engine in the late eighteenth century; little did he realise that he was propelling the whole of Europe into the dawn of an industrial revolution. The next century saw a series of inventions, be it Graham Bell/Antonio Meucci’s telephone or Thomas Edison’s electric bulb. We are not saying that inventions after or before that period were any less crucial, what we are hinting at is the historical moment and its relevance in our discussion here. These ideas became products– commodities to be consumed by people and industries alike at different scales. The industrial revolution over the course of the next century ensured that the making of commodities and the global trade

it propelled happened at a massive scale. Machines replaced craftsmen, but still not at the same scale. However, even if Europe mastered the art of converting an idea into a manufactured good, it was the United States of America that took manufacturing to the next level. This was the level of assembly lines. Who knew that a simple conveyer belt, inspired by the functioning of slaughter houses, and perfected by Henry Ford in 1913 would revolutionise manufacturing like never before. It brought out time and resource efficiency into the process of mass production. Refining the Makings The story of the making of our product did get interrupted by the two World Wars and the political upheaval it generated. New na-


tions were sprouting on the edges of this global scenario; some also drained their wealth. Before long, the quantity of production was no longer a matter of concern. It was increasingly felt that quality and refinement of products has to come in. This art of refined products was mastered by the Japanese. Irrespective of how a product is ideated and manufactured, it is ultimately the distribution network that ensures a speedy delivery to the consumers. It is not that before this juncture in history, delivery channels were not being developed. On the contrary, as we all recall, it was the steam engine, and the subsequent development of other channels of transportation that made the industrial revolution possible. The point is that delivery channels, by the mid-twentieth century also began to imply the passing of information about the products. Service sector came to the forefront, and so happened the IT revolution. However, central to all this was still the last loop of the chain- the consumer. Consumer at the Centre So far, we discussed the journey of a product from the nascent stages of being an idea on a blueprint to its making and delivery. By now, our readers must be wondering, how India as an investment destination comes into the picture. Well, this is precisely what the point is. As the global economies are becoming increasingly aware of consumer demand, emergence of countries like India and China as a potential pool was bound to take place. India becomes an attractive destination for global capital because of this reason. The paradigmatic shift has happened because of the emergence of the consumer. The government’s initiatives like ‘Make in India’, ‘Digital India’ and ‘100 Smart Cities’ have a symbiotic relationship with the country’s consumers. It all works on the principle of demand and supply, at the centre of which is the Indian consumer, the forerunner of India’s growth story

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Adv Sherry Samuel Oommen is a practising lawyer at High Court of Kerala who specialises in tax and Corporate Laws. Presently he heads the tax practice of Nash Capital Partners. Prior to Nash, he single-handedly led the entire Tax vertical of KPMG in Kerala. Apart from being a qualified lawyer, he is also a chartered accountant, cost accountant and a company secretary. He is available at sherryoommen@nashcp.com

Pre-Merger analysis is extremely critical to determine whether value created upon the merger is significantly higher than the existing value of the separate entities- with the addition of costs and risks inherent to mergers.

M

ergers and Acquisitions (M&A) in corporate India has registered a significant upsurge in the month of March, 2016 after a less than satisfactory performance last year. Aided by overall optimism regarding the economy, the forecast of a good monsoon which should boost rural incomes, and the expected easing of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and cross border transactions regulations, M&A discussions are back on the radar of India Inc. Broadly speaking, Mergers are mainly classified into the following types: (i) Horizontal Merger: Merger between companies in the same line of business. (ii) Vertical Merger: Merger between companies in different lines of business to produce one specific

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finished product. (iii) Conglomerate Merger: Merger between companies engaged in unrelated lines of businesses. There are also other classifications of merger in vogue such as Reverse merger, Forward Triangular Merger, Reverse Triangular Merger etc. B. Why Merge? Corporate Mergers promise significant rewards namely: (a) Cost Reduction from Operating Economies: Two similar companies having overlapping functions, such as marketing or R&D would benefit from cost reduction owing to a merger. (b) Economies of Scale: Merger of two similar companies allows for


COMPANY MERGERS: THE REWARDS AND THE RISKS the economies of scale. An increase in volume of production leads to a reduction in cost of production per unit. (c) Tax Savings: Particularly in situations involving group companies, a profit making company can absorb a loss making company to leverage its tax benefits. (d) Encapsulation of value: In most businesses, one would observe that the real value of the business is not reflected in the financial statements. A well structured restructuring could aid in capturing the real value of the business, thereby proffering significant tax savings. Such encapsulation of value was recently upheld by the Kerala High Court following the judgment of the Supreme Court. (e) Cross Selling and Gaining Access to New Markets &Customers: Mergers involving two companies engaged in similar but not identical business allows for cross-selling to each other’s customers and markets. C. Value Creation Analysis Pre-Merger analysis is extremely critical to determine whether value created upon the merger is significantly higher than

the existing value of the separate entities- with the addition of costs and risks inherent to mergers. This may be done by the aid of a thorough analysis and valuation of risks conducted by qualified valuers. The costs &risks involved in a merger are varied and include: (a) Non-Materialisation of Economies of Scale: Wrongful assumptions regarding the efficacy of economies of scale may be made. (b) Over-Reliance on Market Forecasts: Some mergers are executed with an excessive reliance on favourable market forecasts, which may not always materialise. (c) Integration Risks: Even given the various benefits of the Mergers, there are costs involved with respect to the integration of various businesses, depending on the nature of merger. Integration may impact decision-making at top levels. In addition, integration of employees and different work cultures may prove to be difficult. These costs may be very significant for conglomerate mergers. (d) Valuation Costs: Most mergers proceed on the basis of broad based valuations prepared by qualified valuers which provides

a broad financial justification for mergers- especially for the company’s own shareholders. (e) Litigation and Compliance Costs: The litigation and compliance costs may be varied, depending on various factors including discretion of the courts. These may not be insignificant to the overall costs, such as newspaper publication of notices- especially for small companies. D. Conclusion A well-planned and executed merger will boost the revenue and well-being of companies involved in the process, provide multifarious benefits, and address the welfare of its shareholders. It is also settled that a well structured restructuring could proffer significant tax savings to a Group. Hence, an objective, wellgrounded and systematic premerger analysis, which weighs the pros and cons of the decision, is an essential pre-requisite before any decision is taken on a merger by a company. This ought to be supplemented by a detailed roadmap for its efficient and satisfactory execution, making allowances for any hiccups or glitches along the way

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GADGETS

Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro

          

Android 5.1.1 16 MP Primary camera 8 MP Secondary camera 6 Inch Display 1080*1920 pixels Resolution 1.8GHz octa-core Processor 32 GB Internal Memory 4 GB RAM 5000 mAh Battery Capacity Announced: March 2016 Expected release: May 2016

HTC One S9

          

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Android 6.0 13 MP Primary camera 4 Ultrapixel Secondary camera 5 Inch Display 1080*1920 pixels Resolution 2 GHz octa-core Processor 16 GB Internal Memory 2 GB RAM 2840 mAh Battery Capacity Announced: April 2016 Expected release: May 2016


Xiaomi Redmi 3 Pro

MRP: ` 9000 (approximately)

        

Android OS 13MP Primary camera 5MP Secondary camera 5 Inch Display 720*1280 pixels Resolution 32 GB Internal memory 3 GB RAM 4100 mAh Battery Capacity Release Date: April 2016

Asus Zenfone Go T500

MRP: ` 7999 (approximately)          

Android OS 8MP Primary camera 5MP Secondary camera 5 Inch Display 720*1280 pixels Resolution 1.2 GHz Quad-core Processor 16GB Internal Memory 2 GB RAM 2500 mAh Battery Capacity Release Date: April 2016

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COOKERY

Toshma Biju

STRAWBERRY SMOOTHIE Ingredients

• • • •

Yogurt........................................1 cup Sliced frozen strawberries.........1/2 cup Pineapple juice..........................1/2 cup Pineapple chunks, strawberries slices

Method In blender, place yogurt, strawberries and juice. Cover; blend on medium speed until smooth. Pour into serving glass. Garnish with pineapple and strawberries slices.

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WATERMELON JUICE Ingredients

• • •

Sweet watermelon........... 1 small Lime, juiced.................... 1 small Sugar............................... optional

Method

Slice the watermelon in half. slice the halves into smaller strips and use a small spoon to scoop out the seeds. Discard the seeds, and scoop chunks of watermelon from the rind into the blender. If the watermelon is seedless, use a big spoon to scoop chunks of watermelon flesh into the blender. Discard the rind. Blend the watermelon until it is totally pulverized. Squeeze the juice of one small lime into the blender and blend for a few seconds. Pour the watermelon juice into a glasses, over ice.

BANANA MILKSHAKE Ingredients

• • • •

Milk................................. 2 cups Banana............................ 1 Sugar............................... 1/4 cup Ice cubes......................... optional

Method

Pour everything in the blender. Mix in blender for 30 seconds.Pour in serving glass

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COOKERY

MANGO ICE-CREAM Ingredients

• • • • •

Chopped mango..........................2 tbsp(Keep aside a few mango pieces for decoration). Juice of one mango Fresh cream................................250 gms Milk.............................................11/2 cup Sugar...........................................1/2 cup

Method

Mix the chopped mango, juice and sugar very well. Beat the cream lightly. Add the beaten cream and the milk to the mixture. Pour the mixture into ice trays. The ice-cream will be almost fully set in 45 minutes to 1 hour. At this stage, remove the frozen mixture into a bowl. Mix well, decorate with the mango pieces and serve immediately.

CHOCOLATE SHAKE Ingredients

• • •

Chocolate ice cream....................4 scoops Powdered chocolate drink mix.....................................4 table spoons Milk.............................................2 cup

Method

In a blender, combine ice cream, drink mix powder and milk. Blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and serve.

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Kerala1800 425 2013

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BEAUTY

Summer is here; take better care of your skin

T

he skin is the major layer that protects us from the environmental pathogens and suspended particulate matter. It is also one of the key features that give us perfect look. Fair skin, tanned, dark, dim; we have all kinds of beauties out there. Summer is not only giving us hot and sweaty days, but also it is making it difficult to maintain our looks. Heat is giving us rashes and spots. Lack of humidity leads to skin burns. Taking care of skins is absolutely essential for a beautiful and healthy life. Here are some tips to protect your skin: Hydration: people tend to procrastinate when it comes to drinking a glass of water. While you have the access to water. Then exploit it the best way you can. Drink minimum 4 litres of water every day for healthier life. Water helps in hydrating the body and the skin, thus it will help in washing away the toxins and prevent us from harmful sun burns. Juicy fruits are great indeed: Eat lots of fruits. It is yummy and helps to maintain the pH level of the body. It provides your body with necessary proteins to help maintenance your skin. Apples, oranges, watermelon, and pineapple are some of the perfect

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fruits for this season... Apply and reapply: make good use of the skin protection creams like sunscreen. Apply it before you go out. If you sweat, take some time off your busy day, wash your face and reapply it. Apply moisturisers to prevent dryness and cracks on your skin. Hygiene: Keeping your body clean is another essential aspect. Wash your face every chance you get, bathe twice a day. Have a good shower before going to sleep. Soothen for smoothness: Apply body oil before taking bathe to cool off the stress. Make good use of body lotion for better maintenance during immense heat. Proper diet: That’s a word we all love to hate, but it is necessary for good skin care. Avoid taking in oil food and wheat food items like chappathi, roti etc. Avoid non-veg food as they tend to take fluids for better digestion.Drinking coffee will increase the body metabolism, thus it make you feel the heat. So, limit the coffee to morning and evening. These tips will help you endure more heat waves that are yet to come. So, work little more and you will have a cheerful summer. Enjoy! ď Ź


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Do visit this dream land at least once...

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unforgettable destination in eastern europe:

Croatia

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The presence of Adriatic Sea makes the country more-attractive than any other European countries. There would not be any European who has not dreamed about a sunbath in the Adriatic coast.

O

nce we step into this beautiful country, we will redraw the graph of happiness, peace and beauty and will wipe out the upper limit. This Eastern European country is all about fabulous music, fantastic festivals, freaky foods and costliness. Here, you can explore luxury, natural beauty, attractive islands, fishing villages, ruins of medieval architecture and parties and festivals. The best part is that the well-maintained beach-side roads will encourage you to borrow a car and try an adventurous road trip. The country gives adequate prominence to tourism sector because it is an inevitable part of their economy. So, the safety and security are successfully ensured to an extent. Nearly four million people are currently residing in the country and majority of them are Croats. It is one of the least populated countries in European continent. The tourist season of the country begins from June, ends on August.

Moreover, it is the time of festivals and beachside music-parties. Interestingly, the country experiences a Mediterranean climate along with a small bit of Continental weather. This former socialist country had gained independence in 1991. Currently, it is a Republican country. The country has demonstrated an abrupt growth in terms of economy and stability. Now, though it is classified as a developing country, its economy has marked a powerful growth and maintained consistency. Anyway, Croatia is, now, a member of European Union, NATO, UN, and Mediterraneanunion. It has materialised enormous development plans, particularly infrastructural development, for developing the tourist sector. The presence of Adriatic Sea makes the country moreattractive than any other European countries. There would not be any European who has not dreamed about a sunbath in the Adriatic coast.

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Dubrovnik is the major cost city of the country. It is a luxury destination. You will found high-profile hotels, restaurants and clubs here. Though it is a rapidly developing city, it has purposefully maintained 16th century buildings and Renaissance buildings. As we move further, you will find numerous historical ruins. One of the oldest historical ruins in the country is Diocletian’s Palace. UNESCO categorised this location as a protected historical site. You may get a bit to taste Roman architectural skills in this site. Now, it is the prime attraction of Croatian tourism. As we all know, this country has an inevitable relation with its vast costal wealth. Everything in this land is associated with this, even the development of cities. Here we are inviting you to a coastal city named Zadar. It may not show

any resemblance with Dubrovnik apart from its coastline. It is an old city. The authorities have neatly maintained the old roman look of the streets. You must visit St Donat church of Dalmatia. Here you can find some dazzling night clubs. It is the most-perfect place to enjoy night life.

attractive park. There is around 16 lakes flowing through the park and it makes the land even more beautiful. The rare birds, wolves and resident bears contribute to the beauty of land extensively. There are at least one hundred and twenty rare species of birds in the park.

You must include at least three boat trips in your do-list. Unless and until you check into a boat journey, you cannot say that you have completely explored the land. The real beauty of this land lies in Adriatic Sea. There are nearly thousand islands in the Adriatic Sea. Try to visit at least ten of them. The author swears that you will not find it irrelevant.

It is difficult to conclude without mentioning about the food. Croats usually follow a slow diet. They give extreme importance to each and every dish. Interestingly, they are keen to serve you a suitable wine for each course. The slow food procedure helps you to enjoy the food completely. Undisputedly, the wine makes each course tastier.

There are nearly ten national parties in the country. Croatians pay extreme conscious to protect their natural beauty. Plitvice lakes national park is said to be the most-

No person can define this gem completely. But, the memories about this land are worthy enough to reside in your deeper heart as an unforgettable destination. Do visit this dream land at least once

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AUTO REVIEW

VIVEK VENUGOPAL

A LUXURY CAR FROM SKODA 54

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AUTO REVIEW

K

een to not rest on its laurels after the Octavia launch, Skoda has brought in the new Superb, which is the understated luxury car of choice for those who do not want a Mercedes or BMW. You see, cars like the Audi A3 and Mercedes CLA are aimed at those people who don’t mind a small car for the price as long as it wears a premium badge on the bonnet. The Superb is quite the opposite. You spend the same money as an Audi A3, but what you get is something with the creature comforts of an Audi A6. And, it doesn’t attract the same kind of attention which is perfect if you are the sort of person who doesn’t want to flaunt your wealth.

The new Superb is not a facelift of the earlier one, but it is a brand new car based on the new MQB platform, just like the new Octavia.

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It is 28mm longer, 47mm wider and the wheelbase has grown by a significant 80mm. It is also 75kg lighter than the earlier model and looks much sleeker, thanks to better proportions. The front end is sharp and modern with chiseled headlamps and edgier grille merging into one another. The bonnet has its shut-lines run into other elements to make it look like the whole front end is one piece. There are beautiful crystalline details inside the headlamps that pay homage to the ancient Czech glass making industry. The silhouette of the car is quite similar to that of the Octavia, giving it a coupe-like profile. The sloping rear glass and long rear overhang result in one handsome car. The tail lamps are well formed and mimic the design of the ones in the front. There are subtle chrome embellishments throughout, but none too excessive.

It is an elegant and timeless design, which could appeal to everyone. The interiors are about as lavish as you would get for this price. There are acres of space and the seats are wide with enough space to stretch your legs. The dashboard design has some familiarity with the Octavia but the quality of materials used is top notch. There is accent lighting whose colour can be changed.The 6.5 inch touch screen of the infotainment unit is a small, responsive device with a properly weighted switches and knobs.The attention to detail is evident where every storage space in the cabin is lined with felt or rubber so as not to scratch your belongings. And, since this is a Superb, it comes with umbrellas as standard - except this time, there are two in each of the front doors. The driver seats are 12 way adjustable and feel sup-


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portive in all the right places. The rear seats have Mercedes S class rivaling legroom and a suitably sloped floor for that perfect seating posture. If the old Superb had odd proportions, it was to give the rear seats good headroom. In the new one, the slopping roofline could be a problem for tall passengers and the protruding transmission tunnel means the rear seat is only for two. Also gone is the twin-door boot mechanism of the old Superb, the new one gets a large one piece hatch with a whopping 620 litres of cargo space. The Superb comes with petrol and diesel engines and a choice of manual and automatic transmissions for the petrol. The petrol engine is a 1.8 litre turbo charged direction injection four cylinder that pumps out 178bhp and 320Nm torque in the manual version. In the 7 speed dual clutch automatic, peak torque has been electronically limited to 250N-due to the low torque handling nature of the components. The automatic is a smooth unit that delivers lightning fast upshifts and immediate downshifts, but this is a gearbox that has had several breakdowns reported on it earlier, so my advice is to avoid it altogether. The manual car is a joy to drive fast and seems even faster thanks to additional 70Nm torque and 46 kg weight savings over the AT. The performance feels relentless and there is adequate power on tap anywhere in the rev range. The only issue is that the clutch modulation may take a bit get used to and you are likely to stall the car many times at first when moving off. The 2.0 litre diesel is a great buy too, but it costs almost Rs.3 lakhs more than the petrol equivalent. This 174bhp and 350N-m version of the familiar 2.0litre VW engine

comes only as an automatic but this is the more reliable 6 speed twin clutch automatic. Refinement levels are fairly adequate and this engine has always been a willing performer. It has great low end torque and is quite at home in the city where the gearbox is eager to shift up to higher gear quite fast. Press hard on the accelerator pedal and you can often see the traction control light coming on. It revs up to 5000rpm and there is ample mid range and top end poke to overtake fast cars on the highway. The 6 speed box isn’t quick to deliver downshifts as the 7 speed one in the petrol variant, but it doesn’t stand in the way of driving pleasure. At nearly 5 metres long, this 1500kg car isn’t one you’d buy to derive driving pleasure out of, but the new Superb feels surprisingly light around its feet. It doesn’t like to be hurled into corners like the smaller Octavia, but it still manages to stay focused and neutral. The front MacPherson and rear multi-link setup is common to all models, unlike the Octavia which gets an inferior non-independent rear setup for the diesel. Steering lacks feel, but is quite precise and the brakes have good bite. The 215/55 R17 Hankook tyres could have been better in terms of grip and less noisier on the straights. With base model pricing starting at around Rs.22.68 lakhs for the petrol and Rs. 26.39 for the diesel, the Superb comes across as great value. It takes the game to the next level without costing much more than its predecessor. If you are after a premium car that ticks all the right boxes in terms of comfort, style, equipments and performance, patchy after-sales aside, this is the perfect car to buy

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NEW VEHICLES

TOYOTA INNOVA CRYSTA

Releasing date: May 3 Price range: Rs 10 – 15 lakh This stunning car is introduced by a Japanese conglomerate. It is a most suitable vehicle for upper middle class families. The new updated version of this car includes remarkable changes, especially in its structure. The company is planning to release both diesel and petrol engine modelsof this vehicle on the same day. It is expected to hit markets on coming May.

HONDA BR-V Releasing date: May 5 Price range: Rs 8-14 lakh This will be a perfect SUV for an Indian family. The price range of this vehicle indicates that this SUV is mostly focused on middle class families. The Honda India has successfully identified a potential space in the SUV market sector and tactically designed a most-prefect vehicle to fill the gap.

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DATSUN REDI GO

Releasing date: May Price Range: Rs. 3-5 lakh This stylish car is very suitable for an Indian youth. It efficiently includes all the essential features that are potential enough to attract the young folks. This budget car will fit into base model market successfully. This is the third car from the Japanese conglomerate.

MERCEDES-BENZ GLC Releasing Date: June Price Ranging: Rs 38- 50 lakh It will be a perfect luxury car. The vehicles had been recently unveiled in an auto expo conducted in our country. It is focused on upper class folks. The luxury SUV is expected to hit the markets on coming June.

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MOVIE REVIEW

Laal Rang

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his crime thriller directed by Sayed Ahmed Afzal is expected to be released on 22nd April 2016. The trailer and initial stills of the film have successfully attracted film enthusiasts. It is learned that Randeep Hooda and Piaa Bajpai play title characters in the film, which is produced by Nitika Thakur, under Kiran Pictures. Apart from Randeep and Piaa, Akshay Oberoi, RajnieshDuggall and Meenakshi Dixit are casted in the films in prominent roles. The controversial title given to this crime thriller evokes numerous speculations. The film revolves around illegal blood trade. It is one of the most-anticipated crime-thriller of this year.

Ki &Ka

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his romantic drama directed by R.Balki revolves around an ambitious couple. Though it is rated low, the film released on April 1st has gained positive response from the audience. Arjun Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor have responsibility given life to the challenging characters. Apart from them, Rajat Kapoor plays a prominent character in the film, which portrays a lovely couple and their problems. The film discusses about a career oriented women who wishes to create a successful future while her husband wants to create a family. The film gives ample importance to music. Mithoon and Ilayaraja have done their part responsibly as music directors.

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May-June 2016


Captain America: Civil War

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his super hero film is released on May 6. It is the fictional adaptation of the civil war. This science fiction directed by Joe Russo and Antony Russo has been felicitated with high rating by the top medias, including the Guardian. The movie revolves around political instability and need for an accountable-administration. In this film, super heroes shares different opinions on whether the heroes should remain free without interfering government affairs. The fictional film produced by Kevin Feige, under Marvel Studio, has given more prominence to Caption America than Iron Man. Chris Evans, Robert Downey, and Scarlett Johansson give life to lead characters in the film.

Before I Wake

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he psychological thriller directed by Mike Flanagan takes us to a child’s dreams, which he manifest physically while he sleeps. The story revolves around an orphan child. The screenplay was written by Mike Flanagan, and Jeff Howard. Unlike the traditional Hollywood style, the film gives much importance to music. Danny Elfman and the Newton Brothers have done their part responsibly as music directors of this horror fantasy. The film is released by Relativity Media. Kate Bosworth, Thomas Jane, Jacob Tremblay, Annabeth Gish and Dash Mihok play lead roles in the film, which portrays a marvellous fantasy story. The film is rated above average.

May-June 2016

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BOOK REVIEW

Cometh the Hour Author : Jeffrey Archer Price : ` 299

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n this book, the writer introduces a series of character to explain his story in a unique way. Like a classic American novel, the book takes you to an iron curtain country, an elite life style, and sceptical conclusion. Notably, the novel opens with a suicide note that triggers enough curiosity in the readers. The story revolves around the title characters, Harry and Emma Cliftan. In one point of view, it is largely a love story. But, through his marvellous way of writing, the writer keeps you in a pool of suspense. The best part is that the writer was able to maintain a consistent curiosity in readers.

Kundalini: An untold story

Author : Om Swami Price : ` 220

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he book discusses about the spirituality and happiness. In other words, it describes about the difficult word ‘Kundalini’ through some practical ways. The writer is a monk so he successfully answered several questions regarding spirituality in a convincing manner. The book tells about an internal energy and ways to evoke that spiritual strength. We may find it a personal diary of a monk which creatively explains spirituality and happiness through this day to day experience in the world of spirituality. It conveys that we don’t want to become a monk to gain an ultimate spiritual pleasure.

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BOOK REVIEW

India 2016 Author : Publication division Price : ` 300

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he book portrays the achievement of the Narendra Modi government and elucidates its successful projects and plans. It successfully included details of all the prominent projects and policies which were formulated and implemented in the year 2016. It covers all the main sectors like science and technology, rural development, financial administration, welfare policies and many more. In addition, the book successfully included some general information details. Anyway, it is targeted on researchers and enthusiastic students who are interested to learn about the Modi government and its policies extensively. It is worthy to reading this book.

Freakonomics Author : Stephen J. Dubner, Steven D. Levitt Price : ` 374

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his book takes you to the world of numbers. Notably, even if you are a not interested in numbers, you will find this book extremely interesting. Here, the writer explains numerous extraordinary relations and similarities. The author is a renowned economist and his co-writer is an acclaimed journalist. The duos have established history by creating a highly entertainingbook. Some time, you may find it hard to digest some of the extraordinary relations elucidated in the dosser, but it is worthy reading. Notably, this book articulates an indigestible relation between crime rate and abortion. It will certainly make up into an economic classic.

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Printed On 01/ 05/ 2016

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RNI Reg No. KERENG/2011/42633

May-June 2016

May 2016 100 mb (1)  
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