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Vol 8 Issue No.85 Nov-Dec 2018

The IL&FS fiascothe lesson for NBFCs Shri V.P. Nandakumar, MD & CEO Manappuram Finance Ltd.

A daring trip to an iron curtain country

THE INSPIRING TALE OF AN EXCEPTIONAL ENTREPRENEUR Mr. Jithu Sukumaran Nair,

A multi-faceted youth of Kerala


Printed by: Ajit Ravi Published by: Ajit Ravi Owned by: Ajit Ravi Printed at: St. Reddiar & Sons 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 2532040, 2532080 Mob:+91 98460 50283, 94470 50283 Editor Ajit Ravi Sub-Editor Vignesh S.G Associate Editor Ravi Saini Editor-In-charge Jebitha Ajit Legal Advisor Latha Anand B.S.Krishnan Associates bskrishnanassociates@gmail.com Correspondents Dr. Thomas Nechupadam Vivek Venugopal- Quarter Mile Amrutha V Kumar Karthika S Nair Marketing UAE Phygicart.com P.O. Box: 92546, Al Karama Dubai Mr. Anish K Joy Mob: +971528946999 info@phygicart.com Plot No 19A, 9th Floor, Green Building, Film City, Sector - 16A, Noida - 201301 Tamil Nadu Vice president Uma Riyas Khan chennai, Mob: 9841072955 Unique Times, No.6/31, Arunachalam main road, Saligramam, Chennai – 600093 Andhrapradesh & Karnataka PEGASUS Ph: 09288800999 Sunilkumar NN, Saneesh Ashok Your wing Dr. Susan S Sunny Director Shwetha Menon Photographer Ashique Hassan Creative Design PEGASUS Cover Photograph Mr. Jithu Sukumaran Nair, A multi-faceted youth of Kerala

Editorial S

top chasing the money and start chasing the passion, says Tony Hsieh, the famous American internet entrepreneur and venture capitalist. Meet Jithu Sukumaran Nair, a wonderful serial entrepreneur from Kerala who settled in China. Jithu never chases money, instead he always follows his passions. As he is a multi-faceted personality, he likes ship building, food and cinema. Currently working as General Manager, shipbuilding and design at Ultradeep subsea, Singapore, Jithu is also running five Subway American restaurants in Kerala and the master franchisee of Shaan-ePunjab, a reputed Punjab restaurant, in Kerala. He also produced two Malayalam films. He is authorized for business development for India Chinese Govt-owned Company Weichei. Read his glaring story here. Analysing the IL&FS fiasco, Chairman and Managing Director of Manappuram Finance V.P. Nandakumar, in his regular column, explains the inherent strength of the gold loans business model that sometimes markets lose sight of. This time, our travel story is a daring trip to an iron curtain country, North Korea. Noteworthy, there are no restrictions for anyone here, except South Koreans. Our auto team introduces Mahindra Marazzo. Another fresh issue is here with all regular writings on the stock market, gadgets, banking, beauty, movie review, and book review etc. Hope you enjoy the read!

Dr. Ajit Ravi


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CONTENTS

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The IL&FSfiasco– the lesson for NBFCs

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‘Start-up’ to ‘Stand Up’Institution building

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The inspiring tale of an exceptional entrepreneur

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Cook for Kerala; Cook for a Cause

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CSR Funding through Alternative Investments

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58

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Gadgets

48

Recipes

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How to maintain your appearance while sweating

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A daring trip to an iron curtain country

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Mahindra Marazzo


UNIQUE DIARY

India emerges as the fastest growing low-cost carrier market: CAPA

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study conducted by a research firm specialised in the aviation market research, the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation, has indentified India as the fastest growing low-cost carrier market in the world. The study has clearly exposed the potential of the Indian low-coast carrier industry. The study is expected to give a powerful impetus to the industry. The study has also named India as the second largest low-cost carrier country market. Importantly, as per the study, the India’s low-cost carrier market has the largest yearon-year rise. These indices imply that India has the potential to absorb more investment in this sector in the coming days.

Global growth still at 3.7 per cent: IMF

“Business has only two functions – marketing and innovation.” Peter Drucker

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he International Monetary Fund has said that the growth of the world economy has plateaued at nearly 3.7 per cent. Noteworthy, the IMF has indirectly warned about the existence of several problems, which are to be sorted out in a timely manner to achieve a progress. Importantly, the International organisation has observed that the world economy has been witnessing an unequal growth or unbalanced growth for the last few years. Earlier, the IMF proposed that the world economy would achieve a satisfactory growth of 3.9 per cent. Anyway, the latest developments indicate that there is less chance for such a growth in the near future. It seems that the IMF also indirectly admits it now.

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Alphonso mango gets GI tag

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he central government has granted GI tag to Alphonso mango. This tag is normally given to those products which are known for the location in which these are produced. The tag will help the Alphonso mango –one of the most expensive mangoes available in the country– to quell the competition posed by the cheap mangos comes from the southern region of the country. Darjeeling tea is the first product which was given this tag –it was in the year 2004 the tag was offered to the tea. So far, nearly 325 Indian products, including Banarasi saris, Tirupati laddus and Jaipur blue pottery, have been awarded this tag.

Govt should support tea export: Tea Board

“Have the end in mind and every day make sure your working towards it” Ryan Allis

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he Tea Board has demanded that the country should support the export of tea and should incentivise the production of tea. It has also observed that the tea export of the country should cross the mark of 300 million Kg in order to achieve a satisfactory impact on the price of tea. As per the board’s opinion, the price of tea is far lower than the prices of the inputs used in the plantations to produce the tea. The tea plantations in the northern part of the country, according to the board’s opinion, is a bit more secure than those in the southern region, as the labour cost is very less in the north compared to the southern plantations.

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UNIQUE DIARY

India to export rice to China

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ndia, the world’s largest rice exporter, is set send its first consignment of common grade rice to China, the world’s largest rice importer. The world’s largest democracy is worried about the trade deficit it has with the world’s largest country. India aims to reduce its trade deficit with China. It is pushing its communist neighbour to accept more agricultural products. The latest decision to send the rice to China has been achieved after a high level meeting between the top leaders of both countries. Beijing is also the world largest importer of sugar. Delhi is planning to persuade Beijing to open its market for the Indian agricultural products such as sugar.

Britannia to rev up its presence in the Indian dairy sector

“The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.” Ralph

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ritannia, the conglomerate famous for its quality food products, is set to increase its presence in the Indian dairy segment. As a part of their expansion program, the company will launch Britannia Milk Shakes. The company has said that they would launch more dairy products in the coming days. The announcement of the company may have brought shivers to many giants operating in the segment. It remains unclear at this moment whether the move will affect the local players such as the small scale dairy business firms. Notably, for the last few years, the investment in the segment has been consistently increasing. It is the latest example of that trend.

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BUSINESS

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

In a scenario where interest rates are falling and where loans are freely available, this may not present a problem. Beginning from 2014 and up to 2017, India went through a phase of falling interest rates with ample liquidity in the market.

The IL&FSfiasco–the lesson for NBFCs

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ecently, stock markets in India were thrown into turmoil after one of the largest NBFCs in India lending predominantly to the infrastructure sector, i.e. IL&FS or Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services, was unable to make timely repayment of some of its borrowings. The default was attributed to the asset liability mismatch faced by the company and the episode drew attention to the asset liability management (ALM) practices of NBFCs across India. What is asset liability management? What is asset liability mismatch? All lending institutions, be it banks or NBFCs, are essentially financial intermediaries who take money from those with surplus (i.e. savers) and lend it to those who need money (i.e. borrowers). The difference in interest paid to savers on the liability created, and the interest charged to borrowers on the assets booked, is the margin in this business. This is where the profits come from after accounting for expenses. Any rational entity will seek

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to maximise profits by reducing the interest expended and increasing the interest earned. In this context, we must understand that the liabilities raised on the one side (say, deposits from public or borrowings from banks and the money market) and the assets booked on the other side (say, home, vehicle and personal loans, loans to infrastructure or SMEs, or gold loans), all have a maturity profile. In other words, they fall due for repayment or recovery in different time spans, ranging from the short term to the long term. Asset liability management is about ensuring that when your liabilities fall due for repayments, you also have assets maturing at the same time so that you are in a position to honour your commitments, without default. An asset liability mismatch typically arises when short term liabilities are deployed into longer term assets, which is what some NBFCs did in the quest for more profits. After all, when you borrow short term, the interest rate payable is

less than when you borrow long term. Likewise, when you deploy your funds into long term assets, you typically stand to earn more than when you lend short term. But the risk here is that it makes you dependent on your ability to manage the rollover of your own borrowings (from banks or money market) falling due for repayment or obtain fresh short term loans to keep the business running. In a scenario where interest rates are falling and where loans are freely available, this may not present a problem. Beginning from 2014 and up to 2017, India went through a phase of falling interest rates with ample liquidity in the market. All those lending institutions who borrowed cheaper short term funds to create more remunerative long term assets enjoyed abnormal growth and profits during this period. However, when the scenario changed, as happened over the last year with interest rates tightening and liquidity under constraint, rollover of existing loans became more difficult and more


expensive, creating problems for many of them. In the case of IL& FS, it led to an outright default. In July, as the distress in IL&FS was intensifying, the company’s founder Shri Ravi Parthasarathy resigned. Five special purpose vehicles of IL&FS and its subsidiaries including the parent IL&FS defaulted on bonds and commercial papers outstanding to the Indian government owned lender Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) in August. The latter filled an insolvency petition against IL&FS after missing its repaymentssending shockwaves across the financial markets in India. The default by IL&FS was mainly attributed to slow monetisation of long term infrastructure projects aggravated by complications in land acquisition (following the passing of the stringent Land Acquisition Act of 2013), which delayed projects or turned them unviable,thereby restricting cash inflows. Also, the company had resorted to borrowing through short

term instruments to realise marginal funding advantage, and tried to gain higher profit and market share by lending to long tenure projects,leading inevitably to an asset liability mismatch. Indeed, the success story of high credit growth and higher profits recorded by many NBFC sin recent years was driven precisely by increased reliance on short term borrowing with lower marginal cost of funding. Among the common sources of borrowings were banks, mutual funds, insurance companies and, to some extent, retail issue of bonds. The funding of NBFCs by mutual funds reached a high of around Rs 2.2 lakh crore as of March 2018, which is more than double the level of September 2017. The bulk of this funding was extended through short tenure instruments, mainly commercial paper (CP). At the same time, banks’ credit outstanding to NBFC also increased by 27 percent over the year, as compared to overall gross credit growth of 8 percent

as of March 2018. The situation favoured NBFCs as the interest rate scenario was benign under an accommodative monetary policy.

Interest reversal impacting NBFCs

The higher borrowings from banks and the money market was advantageous to NBFCs so long as the cost of borrowing was falling under the gaze of an accommodative monetary policy. With liquidity tightening across global markets, it had its impact in the domestic market too with foreign institutional investors withdrawing money from India. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) intervened to stabilise the market by gradual reversing its easy monetary policy stance. The central bank increased the policy rate over two consecutive policy resolutions and in the last meeting changedits stance on liquidity from neutral to calibrated tightening. The guidance by the monetary policy committee indicated that there was little possibility of a rate cut in the near future. The change

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Risk Averse Bond Market

To deepen bond market in India, Finance Minister Mr. Arun Jaitley’s has pronounce to permit regulated institutions to participate by investing in lower rated debt instruments for better returns has nourish scope for investments. This is not the first measure to liberalise the bond market, the RBI has already issued guidelines to nudge companies to access the bond market and now SEBI augment with a light tough regulation. At the initial level, companies with a credit rating of AA and above looking to borrow for one year and more tenure will have to access market. It is expected that SEBI to lower the rating threshold to ‘A’ in near future. After all this regulations then why bond market is still flimsy to attract investor’s attention. The only answer for the sorry state of affairs is much due to apathy as it is due to risk aversion. It is observed that much of the appetite for debt instruments in the Indian financial institutions is crowded out by government securities (G sec). In addition, to the statutory requirements for domestic financial institution, foreign players also holds dominant share of G Sec bonds in its investment portfolios, reducing sheen for private issuance. Until the fiscal deficit of the government decline and so the government borrowing through bond market the room for private issuance to access the bond market is minimum. Currently after G Sec, the residual share of debt market is dominated by AAA issuers and the issuances by A-rated entities are a meagre 2%. The major reason for such dismal appetite for the A and lower rated company’s instruments is mostly for the stringent investment regulations. The lower rated instruments often are undersubscribed or selectively preferred causing issuers to pay premium price to attract investments for its instrument.

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in the policy stance will increase interest ratesacross the board which will also increase the cost of borrowing for NBFCs. With interest costs heading up, the NBFC sector will likely face liquidity stress if new funding or renewal of credit lines are withheld by banks and mutual funds. Many of them are grappling with asset liability mismatches where short term funds have been deployed in longer tenure loans, especially in housing and vehicle loans, or in infrastructure financing. According to a recent report, NBFCs including housing finance companies (HFCs) have around Rs 78,000 crs worth of debt maturing between October and March 2019.

What about Gold Loan NBFCs?

The gold loan NBFCs present an interesting study in contrast vis-à-vis most of the other NBFCs. The highlight of their business model is their focus on gold loans which are short term loans that are given out for periods ranging from three months to one year. In this scenario, gold loan NBFCs have little to worry about regarding asset liability management or the risk of asset liability mismatches. When your assets are overwhelmingly short term, it does not matter whether your liabilities are short term or long term. Of course, the question may be asked, what about gold loan NBFCs like Manappuram Finance that have since diversified

into new businesses like microfinance, vehicle and home loans where your money is blocked for longer periods? The answer, quite simply, is that we have no worries on that score either. Out of our total loans portfolio of Rs.17,000 crore, gold loans account for 75 percent, while another 15 percent is contributed by microfinance. In microfinance, the typical loan is sanctioned for two years but gets repaid within 18 months. Thus, 90 percent of our total portfolio is accounted for by relatively short term loans, which is more than adequate to take care of all our short term borrowings from banks and the money market. Of course, our home and vehicle loans have a tenure ranging from 3 to 15 years, but thanks to our equity investors and the profits we have retained over the years, we also have Rs.4,000 crore of our own funds in the business. We are very well capitalised. The IL&FS fiasco has demonstrated once again the pitfalls of chasing profits by diluting your standards in asset liability management. It also demonstrates, once again, the inherent strength of the gold loans business model that sometimes markets lose sight of. On our part, we are confident that this crisis is temporary and will soon blow over. In the meantime, it continues to be business as usual for us V.P. Nandakumar is MD & CEO of Manappuram Finance Ltd. Views are personal


BUSINESS

Rajesh Nair Asociate partner-markets, Ernst & Young LLP Rajesh is also the President of the Kerala Chapter of TiE Global

Idea is always the seed to that venture and one cannot underappreciate its value and necessity. But, ‘execution’ is often the ‘ugly duckling’ we often tend to undermine. No idea is complete without the ability to execute it and to demonstrate the power of its virtues. If the founder of the company cannot get into the details of a ‘dirty, muddy – roll up sleeves’ plan –you have to hire that talent.

‘Start-up’ to ‘Stand Up’-Institution building

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here is one debate which has been unanimously settled in recent times. It is proliferation of startups and how a fabulous set of young brave minds are embracing risks and the courage to bare their dreams. This is truly the age of start-up entrepreneurship! The culture of starting businesses young, looking for interesting products and services, and also daring to embark on that journey, is avantgarde. This is a massive mind-set shift from the previous decades, and brings in opportunities for the young –far more than the regular destination of stable jobs and careers. The romance of the idea and the hunger to make a difference are not interesting signposts or Postit notes but the working ethos of many an entrepreneur. But, it takes far more than great ideas and innovative business models to build an institution of repute. A popular research reminds that companies are ‘not entering

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their teens any more‘! They run into closure in the first twelve years. But, the more worrisome part of that research is that barely a few survive the first five years. Now, that is disturbing –not just the risk of failure, but also the pace of failure. To move from the start-up to building an institution it requires an attitude and focus that is very different from the first few years. Here are a few cognitive changes, one has to take into account.

Ideation to Execution

Idea is always the seed to that venture and one cannot underappreciate its value and necessity. But, ‘execution’ is often the ‘ugly duckling’ we often tend to undermine. No idea is complete without the ability to execute it and to demonstrate the power of its virtues. If the founder of the company cannot get into the details of a ‘dirty, muddy – roll up sleeves’ plan –you have to hire that talent. While large corporates have been high on rating ‘execution’, it is time the

start-ups understand that it is your ability to execute that will make the difference!

Individual to Team think

We are conditioned to work in cluster or groups but are always wired to think individually. This is often the death knell of entrepreneur. As an entrepreneur, you have to believe in the power of groups not only for doing things but also to think solutions. A collaborate mindset helps you delegate and breed trust and breeds the value to ‘taking onus and responsibility’ not just for your actions but the collective decisions of the group –even when it was not yours! Mentally, you have to make that transition from aspiring to inspiring others!

Creativity to work structures

“We have a flat organisation –we don’t want creativity to be stifled in work structures! “Personally, I had heard entrepreneurs and professionals say this. Work needs


order and it benefits from a structure. Delegation which is a key management necessity works best when you are structures around. In fact, fundamentally, an organisation structure facilitates more division of work, allocation of targets and makes it efficient to measure progress. Structure is required even when you are part of a rapidly changing business ecosystem or an uncertain future roadmap.

Top line to bottom line focus

Client acquisition and sales will always reserve top places in entrepreneur minds. But, as you progress beyond the idea stage, concepts like savings, burn rate (a monthly outflow) need to govern your decisions. There may be

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BUSINESS

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funds, who will underwrite your losses, your expansions and your customer ownership– but you need to remember that you can never make money on losses –a timely wakeup call when you ride the waves of valuation and notional value! Besides these shifts in thinking, there are also common decision pitfalls.

Role Decisions

We have seen friends starting companies, college mates coming and even spouses joining hands in business. There is no concern in this –but you have to be clear on roles. Who takes decisions? Who is the CEO? Who looks at Finance? Who is responsible for customer

acquisition? This cannot be taken for granted or subtly understood. Job descriptions need to be scripted!

Reward Decisions

How much should the entrepreneur take as salary? Should you not take a salary during the initial days? Should I forgo my pay for the first few months or years? There are no golden rules to these decisions, but thought is necessary.

Divestment decisions

During the initial years, you may be tempted to reward and advice by offering the stake in the company. There is no shame in this, especially when there is money on the table and advice that can help you pivot on the right

lines. But, excessive dilution will make your organisation lose its basic character and you will see a new, unfamiliar entity emerge in front of you! The change in focus for the young entrepreneurs will also be challenging. It may require a complete shift of mindset and the big shift in their thinking processes • From exploration to efficiency • Complete autonomy to some rules • From short term rewards to long term viability The journey may have different twists and turns for different entrepreneurs. But, one things is for sure -it sure will be a bumpy ride! 

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THE INSPIRING TALE OF AN EXCEPTIONAL ENTREPRENEUR Mr. Jithu Sukumaran Nair,

A multi-faceted youth of Kerala

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he Unique Times magazine is very proud to introduce Mr. Jithu Sukumaran Nair, the multi-faceted youth of Kerala who is now settled in Shenzhen, China. Most of his inspiring entrepreneur activity is for his homeland India, and to develop the present-day Indian generation to growth. His life engagements are surely going to startle and inspire you. Mr. Jithu is currently into building the “state-of-the-art� Dynamic Positioning Diving Subsea Construction ships for the oil and gas industry. He has a post graduate diploma in Shipbuilding and Naval Architecture from the Maritime Training Academy, London. He is presently working as the General Manager of Shipbuilding & Design at Ultradeep Subsea of Singapore since 2014. Mr. Jithu, who is also a connoisseur of food, owns franchisee of nearly five Subway American restaurants in Kerala and the master franchisee of Shaan-e-Punjab, the famous Punjabi restaurant. Adding to the feathers in his cap, he has co-produced around two Malayalam movies. And, to flaunt the diversification of his skills, he has been authorized for business development for India by Weichai, the

Chinese government-owned multibillion corporation. He has held leadership positions with Kreuz Subsea, Singapore, and worked with multinational companies such as Technip FMC, Harkand Subsea, and Anglo Eastern Group. He is also one of the youngest Indians in the senior management position in the shipbuilding role to be interviewed by the Chinese government-owned media. He completed his schooling at Naval Public School, Kochi. He is a graduate member of the Institute of Marine Engineers, India, and holds an honors in Mechanical Engineering, specialised in Marine Engineering from Institute of Maritime Studies, Goa. After completing his studies from Goa, Jithu embarked onto sailing on the Merchant Navy ships. It was in the year 2010, he found his breakthrough in the Oil & Gas Offshore sector as a hydraulics engineer, in the specialized diving support vessels at the subsea, where divers goes into 300 metres depth to do inspection, maintenance, repair and installation; beyond 300 metres it is done by work-class robotic Remote Operated Vehicles (ROV) up to 4000 metres. And, then, again in the year 2011, he

joined as a Project Commissioning Superintendent in a new building subsea vessel at Singapore, and in 2013 as the first Project Manager for the first state-of-the art diving vessel built in China for a Singapore owner. He went to China for a year in between, and then back to Singapore, and from 2016 he is staying at Shenzhen, near Hong Kong in China. Meanwhile, around the 2013s, he started a franchisee of Subway in Kerala; he owns over five branches at Kochi and Trivandrum now. Mr. Jithu had a stint with Dominos and Pizza Hut while in India as a part time delivery boy, which indeed was an inspiration to own a franchisee of Subway later. Recently, he grabbed the master franchisee for a Punjabi restaurant named Shaan-e-Punjab. Mr. Jithu is extremely keen in seeing our country developed, and strive to do every bit he can in generating employment here. India has a fleet of 37 years old giving vessels used in the Indian oil and gas, and for that reason, Mr. Jithu met the Petroleum Minister to explain the relevance of new vessels compared to 30 plus years old vessels to bring in India by removing the aged Indian fleet used by Indian oil


companies, and is also trying to bring one of this high tech vessel to Indian oil field. Mr. Jithu Sukumaran His current Nair always dreamt of employer, Ultradeep, starting a tech compa- is engaged in the offshore subsea diving ny, which would proand the construction of Remotely vide interesting soluOperated Underwations on green energy ter Vehicles (ROV) for the Oil & Gas which would add value industry. In this role to the environment he developed design and economy. for the state-of-theart high-tech diving subsea construction vessels with partners from Norway such as Marin Teknikk design, Salt Design, Rolls Royce Norway, ABB, Kongsberg, and Wartsila. He also has extensive negotiation experience with commercial shipyards and other manufacturers. He is still building the high tech diving vessels for Ultradeep for more than 600 USD million. He is also into designing and developing new concepts for 650m diving working closely with DNV & Salt design, Norway. He wholeheartedly thanks Mr. Sheldon Hutton, the founder of Ultradeep, the Ex-vice president & co founder of Kreuz subsea in being instrumental in accelerating the successful journey of his life. They had been building together the state-of-the-art, hi-tech and the most advanced diving subsea construction vessels (DSCV) in the world. Mr. Jithu Sukumaran Nair always dreamt of starting a tech company, which would provide interesting solutions on green energy which would add value to the environment and economy. He observed that China brings in more than 30 million electric scooters in China each year. Later, NIU introduced Smart electric scooters came into picture, with GPS tracking, inbuilt App etc, which was sold off in tens of thousands in the very first month itself. They are the No.1 electric scooter company in the world in just 3 years and now listed at the NASDAQ stock exchange is

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US as well. This triggered Jithu’s brilliant entrepreneurial brain, as he thought of introducing such scooters in India. He immediately got in touch with the co-founder and chief designer of that company, and who later joined a leading design company in Austria another gi-

ant. Jithu, with his gigantic dream and passion, pursued meeting the founder & CEO for his dream come true. Even though, initially, they were extremely doubtful about how Jithu can pull this off as an individual, his determined persistence made him successfully sign a project with the Austrian company. The Austrian company is the design partners, who would do the research & development, design and brand development for India. He is very particular about the quality and technology. Hence, an in depth field research was done in several selected locations in India. He has done all research and development and is on designing the prototype for this new electric smart scooter, the business which will target major markets in Asia and Europe as well. The scooters feature a new axial flux motor designed in Switzerland that allows for greater speed, longer range, a smaller size, lower weight, and more torque, combined with the smart scooter’s advanced user communication, reporting and performance features. This will be a lightweight high per-

formance e-scooter with axial flux motor (which is now not present in the mass market), removable twin batteries for longer range with an intuitive App including GPS with a stunning design. The one year long extensive customer and target audience research his company has done in India has extensively contributed to the development of a model based on practicality and lifestyle. He personally underwent the brand and product positioning workshop held at Austria several times which took him through learning how to make a unique brand, insight for strategic product management, identification of future business advancements, information/buying/usage behavior, planning and recruiting participants and other major elements. The project has entered its phase 5 now, which is engineering and prototype development phase. They are now identifying a right location for setting up a manufacturing unit in India. State governments, which are positively supportive to green energy and an EV company are the ones who are

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keenly sought out and finalised. Talks are going on, for the project to be launched in India, hopefully the company launch in three months. This is going to be a star project exclusively under the Make in India initiative. This scooter will bring in fun, joy and excitement in riding a scooter, giving utmost mileage, reliability and servicing advantages. The endeavour will improve and save environment situation by reducing pollution. The company optimistically is looking forward to “The new Indian generation to shape their own future and drive positive change in India”. With his passion for design and shipbuilding he himself with his godfather Sheldon Hutton, Mr. Jithu is currently designing his 7 star Ultra Luxury Polar Expedition Cruise yacht to accommodate over 416 passengers and nearly 200 crew with his partner RollsRoyce Marine, Norway, the unique vessel to feature all kind of luxury including a casino, restaurants, lounges and a 500m Submarine for explor-

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ing the underwater kingdom. Mr. Jithu Sukumaran is an ardent entrepreneur and a loving family man. He loves India to the core of his heart and would like to utilize his knowledge for the current Indian generation -for their upliftment and development. His wife, Anju, who used to work with Yahoo and Infosys, is now a homemaker. His lovely daughter, Viaga, is a great encour-

agement, amidst a very busy schedule. He is always supported by the blessings of his parents Mr. N Sukumaran Nair & Sreekala S Nair, who has always guided him through the right path. In his words, his parents are the one who changed a little naughty boy like him to a god-fearing boy, who ardently believes and respects the concept of “MATHA, PITHA, GURU, DAIVAM”!


LIMITED EDITION

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Pegasus set to organise Miss Asia

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nce again, Pegasus Global Private Limited is preparing to organise the Miss Asia, the International beauty contest organised to felicitate those Asian and Eurasian beauties who posses extra-ordinary talent, confidence and intelligence. What is seen now in Kerala is the rebirth of a state which was devastated by a disastrous flood a couple of months ago. The state of Kerala has a unique tradition, which is not the contribution of any religion or politics, but of a population of independent thinkers. Kerala has achieved a significant gain in education, health, art and culture, compared to other Indian states, particularly since the age of renaissance. It is the strong cultural sense of the people of the state that has helped the state to achieve these progressive changes. There was a period the state was not supportive to beauty contests. India has an enviable cultural heritage, though it is the combination of several different languages

and cultures. Notably, Pegasus has never included the infamous bikini round, which supports the objectification of women’s body, in any of the beauty contests it has organised in last eighteen years. Pegasus is the first organisation that organised a

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beauty contest without this controversial round. It is very proud to note that Pegasus Chairman Dr. Ajit Ravi, who ventured into the beauty business at the juncture of time when several beauty conglomerates failed, has managed to mark


the name of the state in golden letters in the International beauty business sector. There is no doubt that Dr. Ajit has played a huge role in the achievements the state has made in the beauty sector. It is pertinent to write here that it was a huge setback his favourite star icon Amitabh Bachchan faced in the beauty sector prompted this man to enter this sector and establish several popular beauty contest brands such as the Miss Asia and Miss Glam World –almost equivalent to the highly prestigious Miss World beauty contest. Undoubtedly, it is his persistent hard work, commitment and dedication that have helped him to achieve the successes he has secured in his business. The courage he has shown to materialise such a huge beauty contest in the state at the time the state is just at the preliminary stage of recovering from the damages inflicted by the disastrous flood that affected the state a couple of months ago deserves a special appreciation. One of the prime aims of the beauty contests of Pegasus is to improve the tourism sector of the Gods Own Country. The proposed beauty contest of Pegasus, in which the beauties from over twenty-five countries are expected to participate, has more importance than the previous ones. This time, it has a noble

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There are three rounds in the Miss Asia: National Costume, Black Theme, and White Gown rounds. The Miss Asia, Miss Asia Runnerup, Miss Asia Second Runner-up and Miss Asia Global are selected from this contest.

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duty of giving a fresh impetus to the Kerala tourism sector, which was badly affected by the devastating flood and chaos that followed. The courage shown by the organiser to take up such a noble duty is also worth laudable. There are three rounds in the Miss Asia: National Costume, Black Theme, and White Gown rounds. The Miss Asia, Miss Asia Runner-up, Miss Asia Second Runner-up and Miss Asia Global are selected from this contest. The winners are selected by dignified personalities from the fashion, cinema and modelling sector. They also select the Miss Talent, Miss Humanness, Best National Costume, Miss Beautiful Hair, Miss Beautiful Smile, Miss Beautiful Skin, Miss Beautiful Face, Miss Beautiful Eyes, Miss Congeniality, Miss Personality, Miss Catwalk, Miss Perfect Ten, Miss Viewers Choice, and the Miss Photogenic. The Miss Asia 2018 will be organised in Gokulam Park Hotel, located at Kaloor in Kochi, on 10 November. Manappuram Finance Limited and D Q Watches are the title partners of the beauty contest

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Cook for Kerala; Cook for a Cause

#

CookforKerala is a social campaign introduced by renowned chef Suresh Sashidharan Pillai to help those who were affected by the disastrous flood that inflicted the state a month ago. This is not the first time that the man, who has launched the campaign, has attracted the attention of media. Mr Suresh Pillai is very popular in the country, as well as abroad, particularly among those who love South Indian dishes. He is one of the very few Indians who have

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secured a chance to participate in the BBC Master Chef Professional; he was offered an opportunity to be a participant in the show in the year 2017. Notably, he is only the second Keralite to participate in the show telecasted from London. In this edition, he opens his mind to our journalist about his ambitious campaign targeted to support the flood-affected people in the state of Kerala and many other small and big things he has either witnessed in his life or learned from his years-long experience.

Let’s start our discussion from the ‘#CookForKerala’ campaign.

How will you explain this campaign to our readers? It is a campaign organised to help those affected by the disastrous flood that badly injured the Indian state of Kerala a month ago. Several reputed chefs and even housewives participate in this campaign. The organisers organise food parties or supper parties either individually or in association with restaurants to generate


fund for the campaign, as the profit earned from those program is what that goes as the prime financial resource of the campaign. Recently, I organised a supper party as a part of the campaign. Nearly twenty-one people participated in it. Over twenty-one thousand was collected from the party. That money, along with the money donated by my NRI friends, was contributed to the CMDRF for the flood-relief and rehabilitation activities.

What will be the next step of the campaign? We are planning to launch a cook book, named ‘Cook For Ker-

ala’. Nearly fifty acclaimed chefs will contribute their recipes for the book. The book will be prepared in both Malayalam as well as English. The money earned from this book will be used for the rehabilitation of the flood-affected children of the state.

What inspired you to launch such a campaign? It was the ‘#CookForSyria’ campaign that inspired to initiate the ‘#CookForKerala’ campaign. The former is a global campaign introduced to help the children living in the war-affected regions in Syria. Fortunately, I was a part of the campaign.

Another thought that pulled me into the forefront of the latter is the feeling that something should be done to support those wreaked by the flood to regain their life and livelihood. As a chef, this is the best I can do.

What is it like to become one of the very few Indians to participate in the BBC Master Chef program? It is a very popular program. Even the selection process of the program is very tough, so as each and every round of it. It is a European show, so it promotes European dishes. For that reason, very few Indians have attempted to participate in it, even though Indian chefs are known for their talent and Indian dishes are widely appreciated for its taste across the continent. When I became one of the forty-eight participants of that show, I felt proud. My biggest accomplishment is that I could able to present the European version of a typical Kerala dish in the show: the sauce of mackerel cooked with mango in coconut milk, spiced up with chilli and turmeric, served on a bed of potato infused with curry leaves and garnished with samphire pachadi and coriander oil. That signature dish I made in the show is the perfect blend of east and west. If my accomplishment inspires any Indian to become the winner of the show, I will feel more proud.

How was that journey, particularly how celebrity chefs Marcus Wareing and Monica Galetti and celebrity presenter Gregg Wallace influenced you? Marcus Wareing and Monica Galetti are two highly reputed chefs in Europe. Gregg Wallace is the popular television presenter. Each and every minute I spent with these three legends is pre-

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cious, encouraging and highly informative.

How did your expertise in the South Indian dishes help you in the show? Kerala cuisine is very popular across the world. For breakfast alone, we have at least fifty different dishes. No other region has this. Importantly, we have separate vegetarian and nonvegetarian cuisine. One of my biggest happiness is that I was once invited to teach the students studying in an American university about the secrets of Indian dishes, especially those common in the Kerala region.

From the point of view of a third person, how do you evaluate your professional growth, from Chef King, Chinnakada, Kollam, to Hoppers, London, and now to Raviz Group? From that point of view, it is an unbelievable and unique story. I started my career as a waiter or table assistant in a restaurant based in Kollam Chef King. During my journey towards the post of chief chef, I worked in several acclaimed restaurants and hotels including the veeraswami restaurant and Hoppers, London. My first salary was nearly four-hundred and fifty rupees. Now, I earn

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much more than what is needed to maintain a decent lifestyle in an expensive city like London. I have visited many countries by now. Importantly, it is not that easy to be a British citizen. Each one of my four member family is a British citizen. It is like a fairy tale. Now, I am the corporate chef of the highly prestigious hotel Raviz, Kollam.

Do you still play chess? How do your chess skills compliment your chef skills? I was a district champion in chess. I participated in several state level chess competitions as well as national level competitions. Chess is a game of planning and concentration. These two elements are very important for the success of any job.

What is that one thing Indian restaurants must change? The Indian restaurants must improve its hygiene standards. Indians gives more focus to taste, but less to hygiene standards. All restaurants should make sure that no harm, neither long term nor short term, occur to those who eat food from their restaurants. We have several laws to make sure that, but no serious attention is given to its implemen-

tation. Everything should be done to implement the laws focused to improve the hygiene standards of the food persevered and served and new laws should be articulated if needed. If we improve the hygiene standard of our restaurants and reduce the concentration of preservatives in the dishes served there, a huge improvement can be made in the health of our people. The conception of unhealthy food is the prime cause of the majority of diseases. I will launch a campaign as a social awareness to propagate the importance of food safety.

What is your message to aspiring chefs? It is very interesting field. Those who are passionate about this field will not find it boring, and will be able to be in a highlypaid position within few years after their course and training.

What is your message to our readers? Always use locally available items to prepare food. The dishes prepared using the locally available items should be your main food. There is nothing wrong in trying the dishes, prepared with those not available in and around where you live, once in a while. But, that should not be your main course of food


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Ravi Saini

All the participating MPs that receives MPLAD funds could volunteer to contribute to any such charitable causes and get blessed by the beneficiaries of the same. “God Gives to the Givers.”

CSR Funding through Alternative Investments

I

t is always an uphill task for any government to meet the expectations and demands of its public to provide world class infrastructure, civic amenities, affordable quality-education and healthcare services, as well as pure drinking water and irrigation facilities etc. It is not always advisable to keep taxing the riches and feeding the poor, so the way forward to creating financial resources needed to provide all that is by inviting various stake holders to come together for various fund raising events or initiatives where sponsors take that as an opportunity to get to their targeted audiences by increasing their product’s or service’s visibility.

The activities that could be undertaken are as fol-

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lows: • Celebrity cricket or football matches or tournaments; • Fashion shows or film festivals; • International student exchange programs. The celebrities could be TV or film stars, models, bureaucrats, or lawmakers. All the participating MPs that receives MPLAD funds could volunteer to contribute to any such charitable causes and get blessed by the beneficiaries of the same. “God Gives to the Givers.” The list can be made as exhaustive as one could think of and can go on. Today, whole world is looking towards India as a market and Govt must cash on these historical moments by taking some very basic but necessary steps that


will bring economic independence for India. Since there are plenty of areas that needs to be developed especially in the rural areas and I would suggest that Govt must come forward to support any such fund raising initiative by contributing at least 50% of the Private Funds raised through such fund raising events and allow these funds to be received in the SBI Foundation or Creating “CSR Fund�. All these fund raising should be received in the designated bank account created in the State Bank of India in which an independent third party

auditor or/and fund administrator could be appointed to oversee the receivables and payables through an event specific escrow account. There could also be a great possibility and opportunity for the Govt to put its sovereign guarantee behind to allow a CSR Fund or Bond created and allowed it to be traded through global market players and the spread between the buying and selling to be used purely for the activities mutually identified between the Govt and subscribers of these commercial papers. Funds accrued through such risk free profit

making transactions must remain transparently in the public domains and under fund administrators that do not have any conflict of interests (neither issuer nor subscribers). This could be a win-win for all concerned that includes the TV channels that keep looking for increasing their viewership and can easily cover these events and can increase their advertising revenues as this has been their regular revenue model. Sponsors gets attracted when TV coverages are there and this makes fund raising events a great fun to be involved with it

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Housewife, doctor, activist, engineer, etc….Why does some profession compel its workers to be of pleasing demeanour and etiquettes? Each behaviour or psychological skills can either enforce your thoughts on other people. Or the same talent can be used to protect the vulnerable and other people who are in need. It’s also, of great benefit, of you can audit your own behaviour. Are you moulded and centralised on the method of your profession or are you simply a person.

Vinod Kumar

Person B

ut you cannot always be dependent on the methods of the emotions. I really wonder. Do you not wonder about it? In India, there is a designation called “Housewife”. A what? Yes, A designation called Housewife. What does this mean? A lady who looks after the domestic and household affairs. She has no other occupation that are external to her children and her husband. Really? So, in modern times, this nomenclature is modified. This has become as “Homemaker”. Hmm....A designation called “ Home Maker”. Are there also any men, That are designated as “Homemaker”? You can debate on the origin of these two nomenclatures called Housewife and Homemaker. I think that these designations are dominated with emotions. And other designations in government offices and corporate sector, are driven with reasoning and rationale. Where is the logic? Certainly, the parents make emotional decisions. The public spaces and public opinions needs scrutiny and analysis. The decisions are made, established on data and evidences. The verdict given by judges, needs extreme study and research. The

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judges has to be neutral. That means, free and fair judgements. The judges gives ample importance to the hearings. The advocates represents both sides. Each factions that are embroiled in the clash, will get the opportunity to represent their case. No, emotional decisions here. Justice and jurisprudence will prevail. The judges must be perceived as they are free from bias and prejudices. Many officers in governments has a stereotyped attitude. They never had to sell a product in the competitive market. Salaries are certain. So their mindset is moulded, with the security of income,irrespective of an ability to sell a product. And pension payments are assured. Established in the thought process, that money will come as pension, these employees in government offices, do not have such anxiety. They exercise their administrative powers, while in office. It is not their smile and good behaviour, that are scrutinised and assessed. All has to submit to magistrate. He or she can summon the assessee, to their offices. An activist, is generally restless. They have a keen eye on the

imperfections and errors. The activist, begin as a critic. And then, an activist demands a desired response and result. When they fail to procure, favorable transformation in policy and authorities, then the activist takes the action. The activist is generally seen as impatient. They need courage to protest and dissent. The activist has courage. They are not afraid of consequences and rebuttals. The activist mostly positions himself as a social or political reformer. He is also capable of whipping up, the sentiments of the general public. Here is a trader. The trader has to be very nice to consumers. The trader cannot posture any extreme viewpoint. The trader has to sell a product to a customer. So, he has to be persuasive. The seller has to have charm and appeal. He has to have a appeal, that brings attention on his product. An outlook of humility and gratitude in front of the customer. The perceptive is not of audacity and enforcement of power. But the approach is of rendering hospitality to the buyer. Very few chose to be in the arduous tasks. The manufacturer and the producer of products and goods, must have courage and


acumen . His steady mettle must sustain, failures, rejections and loses. He can get good profits because he is the manufacturer. But also the risks are very high. Must have skills of calculations and calibrations. Everything is budgeted and appropriated. Cannot afford to slip and violate from precisions and accuracies and specificities. All daily activity must be moulded into a strict timeline. Huge investments and stakes and inventories makes the manufacturer into a disciplined and regimented worker. Volunteers has not much risk. But then, they are associated with a cause that is close to their heart. The volunteer is ready and willing to toil and strive and slog. He only intends to promote a cause. The volunteers identifies themselves to a social cause or civil behaviour. They are not motivated with pecuniary gains, but with visibility of transformations in people and circumstances. The volunteers

generally connect with another role models. They are inspired people. The volunteers will contribute more to the cause. Their consumption and demand is very less and they easily makes new friends. They work out of free will. Their disciplines are self imposed, The actions and conduct of volunteers are transparent and is known to neighbors and friends. You must beware from a few people in society. All society and community has people with criminal leanings. There are cheaters and other people who habitually tell lies. You must practise caution, near serial offenders. Same shrewd and cunning people can demolish you. You may collapse when you are defeated by tricky and crafty people. Clearly identify the thieves and stay away from them. Or else, these smooth talkers will succeed in trouncing you. They do not care about your reasoning and rationale. Neither are these deceivers, con-

cerned about your emotions and sentiment. There are people who simply liked to be employed. These employees are risk averse. But then they cannot attract too much wealth Mostly, very committed to their immediate family and friends. The employees conduct is, that their social image must be intact at all times. They are very aligned to cultural and tradition, upkeep. Not easily adaptable to change, they stick to their stand points. The employee community are generally adverse to scale up their sense of responsibilities. The employee disposition, is that which wishes that things remain steady and stable for longer time. They like to hold on to a job in hand. The designation of inspectors has a special aptitude. They must discover the errors and faults. It’s not surprising that they are suspicious about many things. They know to articulate their thoughts

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well. Because they must ask the correct questions. The inspectors are also interrogators. They like to be supervising other people’s work culture. They like to regulate the way, the other people choose to do things. Checking and auditing gives them power in the society and in the industry. They get respect, because the inspector is licensed to bust the routine, so as to discover flaws. The auditors in accounting professions are also like the inspector. But there are intolerant people in communities and societies. They subscribe to extreme views

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and perspectives. The fundamentalist and extremists has radical disposition. Their temperament is violent and turbulent. The actions of extremists emerge out of indoctrinations and dogmas. It’s almost impossible to bargain with or to negotiate with this category of people. These militants thrive in a warlike situation. Very combative and fanatical personalities has least possibility for innovation and intelligence. These people has goal to subvert the civil society by inducing fear. They may be drawing power by oppressing the people. So, is there a little bit of these

behaviours in people, in your neighbourhood? Do a thorough study about how people behave towards you. Why to some profession compels it’s workers to be of pleasing demeanour and etiquettes. Each behaviour or psychological skills can either enforce your thoughts on other people. Or the same talent can be used to protect the vulnerable and other people who are in need. It’s also, of great benefit, of you can audit your own behaviour. Are you moulded and centralised on the method of your profession or are you simply a person


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FINANCE

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 and corporate law practice of Nash Capital Partners. Apart from being a qualified lawyer, he is also a chartered accountant, cost accountant and a company secretary. He is currently pursuing his Doctorate Degree and is reachable at sherryoommen@nashcp.com.

T

he United Nations has declared India as the country with the largest youth population , and the World Bank has pegged India as the second largest work force in the world . Women contribute to almost 25 % of the formal workforce in India . With India on the trajectory of growth, this percentage is only bound to move upwards. India amongst other issues has constantly waged battles to secure the safety of women and the even bigger battle of the public perception of the lack of safety. The proposition that this perception offers has been accelerated with the recent storm of #metoo. The world has been taken aback by the staggering amount of #metoo revelation of sexual abuse. Ranging from film stars, to Olympians, to college students, to blue-collar employees, the movement has been stirred up far and wide. India, considering the social context that we live in, has been considerably slow to pick up on this movement. The constitution of India, the

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India amongst other issues has constantly waged battles to secure the safety of women and the even bigger battle of the public perception of the lack of safety. The proposition that this perception offers has been accelerated with the recent storm of #metoo.


#MeToo What should

organizations do? holy grail of the Indian democracy, guarantees fundamental rights to Men and Women equally. Harassment of Women at the workplace violates the fundamental right of equality and right to life, which are fundamental rights protected under Article 14 (Right to Equality), Article 15 (Prohibition against Discrimination) and Article 21 (Right to Life and Personal Liberty) of the Indian constitution. The growing participation of Women in the Indian workforce has opened up some new dimensions of Women’s safety that have to be addressed. The Hon’ble Supreme Court had taken cognizance of Sexual Harassment of Women at the workplace in the land mark case of Vishaka. The Vishaka guidelines, as they came to be called, were meant to plug in the vacuum created by the lack of legislation. The Vishaka judgement had laid down that, ‘Sexual Harassment’ includes such unwelcome sexually determined behaviour (whether directly or by implication) as: 1. Physical contact and advances; 2. A demand or request for sexual favours; 3. Sexually coloured remarks; 4. Showing pornography; 5. Any other unwelcome physical, verbal or nonverbal conduct of sexual nature. Where any of these acts are committed in circumstances under which the victim of such conduct has a reasonable apprehension that in relation to the victim’s

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The constitution of the ICC has been laid down below in the form of a table. Presiding Officer

Woman employed at a senior level at the workplace from amongst the employees

Members

Not less than 2 members from amongst employees. Preferably committed to the cause of women or who have had experience in social work or have legal knowledge

External member

From an NGO or association committed to the cause of women or person familiar with issues relating to sexual harassment

Not less than half of the ICC members shall be women. The term of the ICC members shall not exceed 3 years. A minimum of 3 members of the ICC including the Presiding Officer are to be present for conducting the inquiry. employment or work (whether she is drawing salary or honorarium or voluntary service, whether in government, public or private enterprise), such conduct can be humiliating and may constitute a health and safety problem, it amounts to sexual harassment in the workplace. It is discriminatory, for instance, when the woman has reasonable grounds to believe that her objection would disadvantage her in connection with her employment or work (including recruiting and promotion), or when it creates a hostile working environment. Adverse consequences might result if the victim does not consent to the conduct in question or raises any objection thereto .’ The guidelines had championed the cause of prevention of harassment of women at the workplace. It took a long 16 years before these guidelines metamorphosed into the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 (POSH act). The POSH act has been made applicable to the whole of India and is to be complied by both public and private bodies. The POSH act gives a very wide definition for the terms ‘Employee’ and ‘Workplace’. The term employee covers regular, temporary, ad hoc employees, individuals engaged on a daily wage basis, either directly or through an agent, contract labourers, co-workers, probationers, trainees, and apprentices, with or without the knowledge of

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the principal employer, whether for remuneration or not, working on a voluntary basis or otherwise, whether the terms of employment are express or implied . The act extends the definition of the term workplace to include the places visited by the employee which arises out of the course of employment and includes the transportation provided for commuting from and to the place of employment . The POSH act has laid down a structured system of complaint redressal. The cornerstone of the POSH act is the formation of the ‘Internal Complaints Committee’ at the organizations level and the ‘Local Complaints Committee’ at the local government level. The act mandates that every organization shall set up an Internal Complaints Committee at each office or branch which employees more than 10 individuals. The touchstone of any ICC would be maintaining its autonomy and confidentiality, so as to establish its credibility. The ICC has a twofold functionof overseeing the process of conciliation if requested by the aggrieved party and the significant latter function of instituting an inquiry into a complaint that is made. At any point, the ICC shall function as a neutral body, and must not act at its own behest where the rights of the parties are involved. The ICC may take interim measures such as i. Transferring of the aggrieved woman or the respondent to any other workplace; ii. Grant of leave to the aggrieved

woman up to a period of 3 months in addition to her regular statutory or contractual leave entitlement; iii. Restraining the respondent from reporting on the work performance of the aggrieved woman or writing her confidential report -such duties may be transferred to other employees. The POSH act lays down the punitive measures that can be taken ranging from disciplinary action including written apology, warning, reprimand, censure, withholding of promotion, withholding of pay rise or increments, terminating the respondent from service, undergoing a counselling session, or carrying out community service or as specifically laid down in the organizations rules of service. The act mandates that these measures shall be equally enforced in the event that the complaint filed is adjudicated to be frivolous. The POSH act has a long way to go before it can effectively cause organizations to implement in-house Anti-Sexual Harassment measures. The consequences of non-compliance by an employer under the act have reaching ramifications, beginning with a fine of INR 50,000 and upwards. To ensure its effectiveness, it would be advisable that regular monitoring and reporting mechanisms are put in place by even the regulators as well. Further, it would go a long step if auditors too are made to comment on whether their respective client has adhered to the relevant provisions of the POSH act


MOTIVATION

Dolly Neena Dolly Neena is founder of Your Wing, a training company born out of a noble cause and spirit. She holds a decade long experience being a passionate mentor and entrepreneur.

Effective” communication has become almost impossible nowadays, due to lack in skills, knowledge and practice to do so. Even more, world is getting more techy that we even choose not to talk properly and rely on more non-human ways like sending emails, ‘WhatsApping’ etc.

PATCH-UP THE GLITCHES IN CONNECTION!

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o effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others. – Anthony Robbins As human beings, we are biologically built with the same type of cells, organs and the innate analytical ability. There are similarities our brains shares like we all like the scent of a rose, love a picturesque locale, or experience an adrenaline rush or fear when we hear a glass break in the middle of the night while we are asleep. Perceptual Psychology and the studies on brain sciences emphasize the communality in the way that individuals experience reality. However, human beings are different genetically and psychologically. They differ in their cognitive abilities, discernments and capacities. Why do people think different? As Tony Robbins rightly puts it across, we are all unique, at the same time very different from each other –in the way we think, perceive things

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and respond or react. This is something we often tend to forget as well, especially when it comes to communicating with others. ”Effective” communication has become almost impossible nowadays, due to lack in skills, knowledge and practice to do so. Even more, world is getting more techy that we even choose not to talk properly and rely on more non-human ways like sending emails, ‘WhatsApping’ etc. We are all born different, raised by different parents who have been raised differently by theirs; we have different cultures and different mind conditioning; we all have different beliefs, norms, values and principles programmed into us while we were growing up. We are highly influenced by the environment we were raised at, the parents we were born to, the religious and social conditions around and the culture that you have been exposed from birth. However, studies mention that our genetic codes are different. Each sibling tend to pick up cues differently again, even during their growth in the same house under same parents. We

have seen brothers and sisters who upholds entirely different perspectives about life, and respond differently to the same situation they encounter. Every individual imbibe the learning that’s been poured on them differently according to their repertoire. This results in different personalities and temperamental types as per the body produces behavioral patterns. Someone’s predispositions differ from another. These differences majorly affect understanding relationships, whether it be at work, in society or at home. Communication is indispensable. Even though the ability of communication is deeply intertwined with the human existence, nowadays we notice that people tend to avoid direct verbal communications as much as possible. Some people find it hard to talk. They might need great external encouragement to open up or to listen to another. Unfortunately, this help is very much deteriorating in the current world, as everyone is getting more self-centered and engrossed in gadgets. Daily we


see crowds of people “hanging out” in coffee shops hanging their heads down staring at the mobile screens in their hands. People hide behind social media to fight virtual wars. As the act of communication is reciprocal in nature, they find it more comfortable to do such unfulfilling guerilla wars than valiantly walk up to someone to do an effective communication with them. We see in relationships, people run away from talking their hearts open, in fear not to be able to hold a healthy conversation. Friends and couple know very little about each other as they listen to Facebook more than to each other. Ego overrun people not to sustain a talk. Knowing how and what to talk in a relationship enhances its vitality and reinforces levels of love, trust fidelity and respect. The ‘effectivity’ of communication, whether verbal or non-verbal, will literally judge the life of your relationship. You don’t trust a partner who is not consistent in regularly keeping in touch with you, do not talk to you nor would you trust a partner who would often lie to you. So being able to communicate well is to show your partner how much you love him or her. So, what do we need to keep in mind in order to succeed in communicating well? The first

and foremost thing is to accept the differences. Understand that even though we are all biologically alike as human beings, we are so different in our cognitive nature. The way each person perceives the world and reality, is different. To put it in simple terms, wear the other person’s shoes and think before you go judgmental on them. Each couple, each partners, each boss and employee, each pair of friends –will have to identify their own set of communication style that suits them. A lot of thought and effort should be put behind this. Hence, most importantly, you should be committed to make a difference in your lives by learning how to communicate effectively. To implement and execute commitment, it takes a lot of energy, time and effort. It is not easy to understand another person, as you have not walked in their shoes much. Most of us jump into conclusions. A lot of us have a huge hot-air balloon of self-image created by ourselves, which stands right in between as a great barrier to open communication and clear understanding. We end up in assuming that what we inferred and judged is factual. This notion can be extremely detrimental to the companionship. All the unwanted problems that arise in day to day

life stem out of not knowing how to communicate properly. In fact, you contribute to the problem more than you realize. But, you assume that the fault was of the others. Avoiding a conflicting concern will never help. Analyse your thoughts, words and actions towards another. Listening is the first leap. Listen to their words, their actions, their feelings, their body language, listen to their emotions. Listen to yourself in turn. Unless you show genuine interesting in knowing the other person, you will not succeed in communicating well. Superficial knowledge won’t help in building strong companionship. You need to go deep, understand and decipher, which will help you to decode the conflicts and find solutions. Understanding at the right level will help you to know what and how to respond. Humanity needs to address this very damaging phase of life, of not able to communicate properly, more than they address equality to women and global warming. Connecting with other people is to make our lives happier. For that we all need positive interactions. Communication is the key to being charmingly alive. It is also the key for a delightful beginning and a blissful ending too. Let’s connect –stronger than ever!

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COOKERY

Toshma Biju

Grape Wine

Ingredients

• • • •

Grapes - 500 gm Sugar - 500 gm Cinnamon sticks - 2 nos Cloves - 4 nos

Method Wash and dry the grapes. Clean and dry a jar. Divide the sugar and grapes into equal number of portions. Take one portion of the grapes and place in the jar. Crush it lightly with the back of a wooden spoon. Layer a portion of the sugar. Repeat this process until all the fruit is used up. Crush the last layer of fruit and add

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the cinnamon stick and cloves. End with layer of sugar. Close the lid and store in a dark place. Around 24 hours later, shake the jar lightly to distribute the sugar and spices evenly. Repeat this process for 5 days. If the mix froths to the top open the lid a little to vent. Keep the jar undisturbed for at least 21 days. Open the jar and strain the juices into a clean dry bottle.


Passion Fruit Wine Ingredients

• • • • •

Passion fruit pulp -1 1/2 kg Sugar -1 kg Yeast -1 teaspoon Egg white -1 beat Boiled and cooled water -4 bottles (750ml )

Method Mix passion the fruit pulp, sugar, water and yeast. Beat the egg white well and mix well with the above mix. Pour this into a clean bottle and tie the bottle with a clean cloth or close with lid little loose. Keep it aside for 21 days. Stir the mixture with a clean wooden spoon every day. After around 21 days, strain the mixture and pour it in to clean dry bottles and use.

Gooseberry Wine Ingredients Goos berry –1 kg Water –2½ litres Sugar –1 kg Yeast –1 teaspoon

Method Wash the gooseberries and soak over-night in clean water. Drain and cook the gooseberries in 2 and half litres of water for half an hour. Now, take 3-4 cups of water from this and use this to melt sugar. The water for melting sugar has to be taken from the water used for cooking gooseberries. Let the sugar syrup cool down. Deseed the cooked gooseberries. Add the deseeded gooseberries, the water used for cooking gooseberries, sugar syrup and yeast to a clean dry earthenware. Close the lid and keep this air-tight for at least 21 days. Stir this mixture once every day. On the 21st day, open the container, strain it to remove the residues, and store in clean, dry, airtight glass bottles.

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Orange Wine Ingredients

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Oranges– 20 nos Boiled and cooled water- 10 cups Sugar- 11/2 Kg Yeast- 1 1/4 tablespoon Raisins- 350 gms

Method Peel and mash the oranges. Remove all seeds. Put the mashed orange pulp into a jar along with sugar, raisins, yeast and water. Take a peel of an orange. Scrape off the pith (white part). Slice them. Roast the peel in a pan till it turns light brown in coluor. Boil 1/2 cup water in a pan. Add the roasted peel and bring to a boil. Allow it to cool completely. Pour this into the jar. Stir the mixture well, using a wooden spoon, for a few minutes. Cover the mouth of the jar with a muslin cloth and lid. Keep it as such for over 21 days. After this period, strain the mixture into a vessel and allow it to rest. Carefully pour into bottles. Make sure to fill at least up to ¾ of each bottle.

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BEAUTY

HOW TO MAINTAIN YOUR APPEARANCE WHILE SWEATING

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Summer is here. he Earth is mercilessly getting hot every year and our body has to take up similar precautions to combat it. Sweating, in simple words, is our body’s defence mechanism to combat hyperthermia, an increase in body temperature due to the hot environment. Absence of sweating can affect our bodily functions and may even lead to death. That being said, if you sweat too much then you should consult a doctor. For those who apply makeup daily, this can be a very exasperating situation. Don’t fret. You can maintain your looks just as much. Here are some precautions that you should consider mandatory. •Try to avoid powder. When you sweat, the powder will form a “chalky” appearance which will look horrendous when the skins dry up as the wrinkles or face lines will look obvious. Just apply a suitable cream and leave the skin dry. •Always make sure that your body cools off before applying makeup.

If you are in a hurry, splash some cool water on your face, wipe it thoroughly and then apply makeup. The warm skin might absorb the makeup ingredients leading to a less polished appearance. •Avoid heavy foundations as they might form deposits on those areas which sweat immensely. Even if you are compelled to wear them, try to reapply the foundation after washing your face thoroughly every now and then. •Since powders form a cake in moist areas, you should switch to creams. Use an eyelid primer for eye makeup. •You may go for water-resistant makeup products. Waterproof, eyeliners, creams, foundations etc are available. Follow the instructions closely to get the apt result. •It is better to use light coloured makeup to have a better look. In fact, sweat will make the skin “glow” when you apply the apt foundations. •Drink enough water. This is an instruction that you must have seen a lot in many

Dr. Elizabath Chacko, MD-Kalpana International

Mob: 9388618112

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magazines and websites, so you should know its importance. It is imperative for you to keep your body cool from the inside so that your skin will be dry enough. Added to that, your body might become dehydrated due to sweating. So, you should drink enough water. •Sunscreen should be seen as something which is mandatory during sunny days. It is better that you limit your daily makeup routine to just sunscreen and a lipstick. Always keep a towel or a handkerchief with you. One of the common mistakes people make is when they wipe their face with the kerchief. Never do that. Just press it against those areas with sweat. It is better to leave a "moist" like appearance on your skin. Also, know that you have to sweat to combat the heat. So, use the above technique. Enjoy your sunny days

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TRAVELOGUE

A daring trip to an iron curtain country

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his edition is very special. Why? In this edition, the writer writes for those daring travellers who are not afraid of facing serious troubles to quench their desire to explore. By now, you might have understood that what the writer introduces in this edition is not an ordinary country. The United States is consid-

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ered as the world’s most powerful country. After the disintegration of the erstwhile Soviet Union, the US has emerged as the sole world power. But, one country has dared to challenge the US hegemony. It is the only country towards which the Americans have never showed its coercive attitude. That country is none other than North Korea. Does North Korea encourage

tourism? It is better to answer the aforesaid question with a counterquestion: do you feel your trip as a risky and adventurous one when you are supported and guided by everyone you find during the trip. Traditionally, North Korea is not friendly to the tourism industry. To this, it is important to add that for the last few years the North has been removing several tight knots


Noteworthy, there are no restrictions for anyone, except South Koreans, to visit North Korea. Nevertheless, there are allegations that often journalists are denied entry to the country.

which have damaged the tourism sector. In fact, it is a welcoming move. Notably, unlike other countries, there are no private tour companies in this country. The entire tourism operations are handled by a hand full of state-owned tour companies that function under the North Korean communist government. The Korean International Travel Company, Korean International Sports Travel Company, and Korean International Youth Travel Company are some of them. Those who travel to North Korea have no other option, but to rely on these agencies. Noteworthy, there are no restrictions for anyone, except South Koreans, to visit North Korea. Nevertheless, there are allegations that often journalists are denied entry to the country. To enter the country, it is important to receive the blue travel paper of the North Korean government. The authorities stamp this document at the entry point, not the passport or visa. This document is the authorised travel document and identity document of every traveller, as long as he/she stays in the country. No traveller is supposed to visit any location which is not specified in his/her blue travel paper. It is pertinent to remember that North Korea is very less toler-

ant to the violation of its rules and regulations. Despite these regulations and restrictions, North Korea has been witnessing a steady increase in the number of travellers reach the country every year for last few years. It is the curiosity fact that plays a huge role in that consistent increase. If something is kept far away from the limit you can freely access, you will naturally feel an urge to get close to it due to the curiosity factor that works inside you. The same is what prompts many travel enthusiasts to put this country, which has nothing significant to boast of, in their bucket list. Do you know that this country is still in the state of war with its neighbour South Korea? Actually, the Korean Armistice Agreement that brought peace to the peninsula of Korea several decades ago did not stop the war completely, but only paused briefly. Technically, South Korea and North Korea is in the state of war between each other. It was the Imperial Japan’s annexation of Korean peninsula that brought the first serious disaster to the part of the world. Subsequently, the crisis intensified when the allied power liberated the peninsula from Japan as one of the member of allies, Soviet Union, decided to support the formation of a commu-

nist regime in the northern part of the peninsula and another important allied power United States backed the creation of a capitalist regime in the southern region. Later, the crisis further worsened when North Korea used force to ascertain its dominance in the peninsula. Though the war did not last more than a few years technically, it created irrevocable damages physically and mentally. The sad reality is that still the peninsula has not moved much from where the Korean War has pushed them into. If the possibilities and opportunities created by the progressive sector of tourism help heal the wounds caused due to the wars and all those that followed the wars, it can be called as the magic medicine that can be prescribed to bring back the lost glory of any land. Panmunjom, Myohyang-san, Tower of Juche Idea, Kim II-sung Square, Mangyongdae Residence of Kim II Sung, The Pyongyang Metro, Koryo Museum, USS Pueblo, Chollima Statue, and the Arch of Triumph in Pyongyang are the top tourist attractions in the country. Panmunjom is an abandoned village located in the middle of North Korea and South Korea. It is where the famous Armistice Agreement was signed. The Armistice Talks Hall is the most famous tour-

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ist site located in this region. Myohyang-san is a sacred mountain where the forefather of the Korean people King Tangun was born. It is in this mountain the International Friendship Exhibition Centre is located. Another important attraction of this country is the Tower of Juche Idea. This structure is different from all structures erected in the dictatorship era. The reason is that it represents an ideology, named Juche –the ideology introduced by the beloved leader of North Korea Kim II-Sung. It is important to note that there is no ideology that defines the North Korean version of autarky, self-reliance, nationalism and traditionalism better than this ideology. Kim II-sung Square is another important structure erected in the country. It is a very large square, notably one among the thirty largest squares. Mangyongdae Residence of

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Kim II Sung is one of the top tourist attractions in the country. It is where the most beloved leader of North Koreans spent his childhood. It is advised to visit the Pyongyang Metro to understand how advanced the Koreans are in the area of technology. The metro is regarded as the most valuable wealth of the capital of the communist dictatorial country Pyongyang. No traveller wishes to miss the chance to visit Koryo Museum. It was once the cultural and educational centre of the peninsula. In the museum, there are many valuables, which are capable to give a deep insight about the rich culture of the peninsula. Only American ship which is under captivity at this moment is USS Pueblo. North Korean is the one which captured it. Now, the ship functions as a museum in the country. It also draws several travellers every year.

If there is something that truly represents the spirit of Koreans, it is Chollima Statue, the statue that depicts a mythical house which is powerful enough to cover hundreds of kilometres in one day. North Koreans are very pound of their country and their resistance towards the, so called, imperialism, particularly the resistance against the ancient Japanese imperialist and modern western imperialists. The Arch of Triumph in Pyongyang is one of the structures that clearly show how proud the Koreans are about their resistance. It is the world’s tallest triumph arch ever built in the world. North Korea is entirely different from the image it is given outside this country. If you get a chance to get close to North Korea, you may change many notions about this country. Don’t miss any chance to visit this country!!!


AUTO REVIEW

VIVEK VENUGOPAL

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he Marazzo is Mahindra’s answer to the Innova Crysta and upcoming Ertiga. This is the best Mahindra in years -one that feels truly world class. It is to be noted that most of the developments of this car took place at the MNATC (Mahindra North American Technical Centre) in Michigan, USA. The styling is quite different for a Mahindra and is unashamedly like an MPV. The sides feature prominent character lines and the roofline slopes gently all the way to the rear. The front end has the new age Mahindra grill and blacked out headlamps. The rear lamps are shaped like the tail of a shark which Mahindra says influenced most of the car’s design. The 17-inch wheels feature a unique design with spokes that are similar to the shark tooth bits on the grill and comes with 215/60 R17 tyres. The Marazzo cabin is a nice place to be in and is a total departure from Mahin-

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dras of yore. Save for some low rent bits -like the HVAC controls from the XUV. The dashboard is of good quality and it feels well put together. There is a 7-inch touch screen, which is fairly functional and comes with Android Auto and has a reverse camera. The analogue gauges look quite simple, but the central TFT screen has good graphics. There are ample storage spaces in the cabin, but some are not easy to access, like the rear door pockets. There is a big storage on the lower console between the front seats and a deep cubby on the top of the dash which looks like it was designed to house a centre channel speaker. The seats are wide and comfortable, both front and in the middle row. There is adequate legroom and the middle row captain chairs can be slid forward to give better legroom to rear passengers. The rear-most seat is fairly spacious and can seat adults for short distances. The Marazzo has a cen-


The Marazzo cabin is a nice place to be in and is a total departure from Mahindras of yore. Save for some low rent bits -like the HVAC controls from the XUV.

Mahindra Marazzo

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trally mounted AC console on the roof for passengers which provide a diffused cooling effect. The boot at 190 litres (with all seats up) is only good for a one soft bag or two, but fold down the last two rows and it expands to 1055 litres The 1.5-litre diesel engine in the Marazzo is a four cylinder version of the 1.2-litre three cylinder used in the KUV 100. Here, it produces 123bhp and 300Nm torque. What gets you first is how refined it is. There is so little clatter and vibration, and most of it is down to an offset crank, dual mass flywheel and cleverly designed engine mounting. The cabin insulation is also on the higher side and you can tell it is a more refined engine than the one powering the Innova Crys-

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ta. What’s more, the clutch is one of the lightest we have seen and that makes city driving a breeze. It pulls away cleanly from low revs and while the gearshifts are fairly long, it is quite effortless. Where this engine loses out is in the acceleration. The Marazzo weighs about 1.6 tonnes and the small engine struggles past 80 kmph. Still, for its segment, and for city driving, you wouldn’t mind. The Marazzo has good road manners. It has good suspension compliance and feels comfortable over broken patches. At low speeds, the suspension which is designed to take full load feels slightly stiff when you have just the driver. The steering feels well weighted and accurate, and the Marazzo feels very

predictable. There is good straightline stability and while the brakes are discs all around and stop the car well, it could do with a bit more pedal feel. Questionable name and silly ad campaign aside, this is a genuinely good effort from Mahindra. It feels better built than any Mahindra before, has good ride and handling, feels refined and is comfortable over long distances. Yes, the engine could do with a bit more power and we would have liked features like keyless entry, push button start, automatic headlamps, wipers etc, but the Marazzo is quite well kitted for the segment. With prices ranging from Rs.9.99 – 13.90 lakhs, it is a proper people carrier for the money.


MOVIE REVIEW

Thugs of Hindostan

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t is an action movie directed by noted filmmaker Vijay Krishna Acharya, who has carved a special place in both television and film industries through his hard work and dedication. This film is based on a novel written by Philip Meadows Taylor in the year 1839 ‘Confession of A Thug’, which is the artistic portrayal of the thuggee cult prevailed in British India at that time. The film tells us the story of a thug named Amir Ali and his gang. Several actors appear in the movie. Amir Khan, Amitabh Bachchan and Katrina Kaif are the most popular actors act in the movie.

Dassehra

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t is an action thriller directed by young filmmaker Manish Vatsalya. The film portrays the present political scenario of the country. It shows clearly how criminal gangs rule some regions with the support of the state of impunity ensured by the corrupted politicians for their peers. It also describes how this corrupted system affects the genuine law enforcers who are very sincere in their job. Neil Nitin Mukesh, Tina Desai, Ashwini Kalsekar, Govind Namdev and the director himself appear in the lead roles. Notably, this film has everything to be qualified as a powerful political thriller. There are several action sequences in the movie.

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The Nutcracker and the Four Realms

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t is a fantasy movie directed jointly by Swedish filmmaker Lasse Hallstrom and American filmmaker Joe Johnson. The fact that the movie is produced in the Walt Disney Pictures production company raises its expectations to the peak. The film is the adaptation of ‘The Nutcrackers’ and ‘The Nutcrackers and The Mouse King’. The film takes its audience to a fantasy world, like the one that they only experience in the ‘Alice in Wonderland’ novels. The directors deserve a special appreciation for the beautiful way they portray each and every scene. Mackenzie Foy, Keira Knightley, Eugenio Derbez, Misty Copeland and Morgan Freeman are the prime actors of the movie.

Hunter Killer

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t is an action movie directed by popular filmmaker Donovan Marsh. It is the adaptation of Firing Point, the thriller novel written by Don Keith and George Wallace in the year 2012. The central character of the movie is an American submarine captain Joe Glass. In this film, the lead character is on a historic mission to stop the occurrence of third world war. It is its action sequences that make this move special and attractive. Gerald Butler appears in the prime role as the man on the risky mission. Apart from Butler, Gary Oldman, Michael Nyqvist, Linda Cardellini and Common act in the lead roles.

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BOOK REVIEW

Heads You Win Author Price

: Jeffrey Archer : Rs. 279 (paperback)

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his book comes under the genre of historical fiction. It is the story of a Russian man Alexander Karpenko. The story opens with a tragedy: the central character’s father, who is a very powerful man, gets assassinated by the infamous secret agents of Russia KGB. That assassination forces the prime character and his mother to flee the country. What comes next is the thrilling element of the story. There is a huge twist waiting at the end of the story. The writer deservers a special appreciation for the effort he has put to keep each and every page different, unique and interesting.

Lucknow Diaries: Of Love and Longing Author Price

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: Partha Sarthi Sen Sharma : Rs. 240 (paperback)

t is a very interesting fiction, which is entirely different from most of the others that narrate the story of love and friendship. Ambition is the other important element that has a vital role in the story of this beautiful novel. It is the commendable effort the writer shows to portray the beauty of Luknow city that gives the book an additional appeal among the reading population. The central characters of this book are Dinesh, Feroze and Rahul. The writer describes each and every interesting moment that these three human beings have witness since their childhood until they confronts the realities of the life. What are they? Read to find it.

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BOOK REVIEW

The Big Reverse: How Demonetization Knocked India Out Author Price

: Meera Sanyal : Rs. 449 (hardcover)

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ndia demonetized the highest denomination banknotes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 on November 8, 2016. The move brought troubles in the lives of many, mostly poor. As it was introduced as an inevitable measure to weed out the evils of black money, corruption and tax evasion that affected the country, most of the people happily tolerated the sufferings created by the policy. Has the policy achieved the desired result? Here, the writer tries to analysis this policy with the help of the data available in the public domain. The book is capable to answer almost all doubts regarding the subject.

Mastering the Market Cycle: Getting the Odds on Your Side Author Price

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: Howard Marks : Rs. 539 (hardcover)

here is a connection between economies, companies and markets. All these three respond to human behaviour and current events. It is vital to understand the rhythm of these elements for every businessman to gain big fortunes and to stay afloat and unaffected in the turbulent platform of business. This book is a guide which teaches how to learn this rhythm. If you manage to learn this rhythm, you will be able to identify all right opportunities in the business that you do. Businessmen who are capable to identify opportunities never taste failure in their businesses. In that sense, every aspiring businessman and investor should find way to go through this precious guide.

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