Sunday, December 20, 2009

Hamara Bajaj

Hamara Bajaj rides into its Sunset

This is a very popular scene in the Westerns of Hollywood. The Hero riding alone
into the settig Sun on his horse alone . In the backgrond can be heard the
noise of revelry in the village he has freed from the atrocities of the villain.
However in this forlorn ride of the hero there is a promise of his emerging in
another locality similarly under the clutces of a Signor.However, there is no
such relief in the picture of Hamarea Bajaj riding into the sunset.Even the actual
sunset holds the promise of sunrise in another hemisphere of the globe.But there is
no such relief in the picture of Hamara Bajaj riding into the sunset. It is not
going to come back or emerging somewhere else.

The recent interfiew of Rahul Bajaj to NDTV sounded pathetic.At one time
Bajaj scooters became so popular that it produced and sold one
lakh vehicles in a single financial year in 1977. And after the Hamara Bajaj
campaign, it sold even one million scooters by 1995.

One can quite understand and sympathise with him when he says he felt that
the defision of his son Rajiv to cease the prodution was not in order. He
however, adds that it may be right to him but he himself felt that it may
perhaps be possible that Bajaj will hit the road again.

For decades, they were coveted status symbols — products so sought after in
India that waiting lists extended for years and marriages were put on hold until
a bride's father could secure one as part of her dowry

And now the last Bajaj Scooter will ride out of the factorhy in March 2010.

However,one is not sure that the rider into the sunset is doing the right thing.
For it is not as it were that all villains have been liquidated. The Hindu avtars
also were rather hasty in going back to their own home(Nijdham) and were therefore
forced to come back again and again.

For it does not appear that people are,as it were,fed up with scooters.For while
Bajaj are quitting the field others who are already in the field are launching
exp;ansion plans and even new manufacturers are coming in.Mahindra has stepped
in recently.Honda Motor ccles and scooters India has posted a redovery,may be
modest at l.2% The scooters have their own buyers. It is significant to note
that with all its protestations of falling markets for schhters and preference
citing almost 60 percent drop in demand Bajaj remained the second lartewst bike
maker with sales rising by 12-odd percent3 poin5w during April-November(approximately
one million scooters. This looks further impressive when we look at the sales of
the market leader Hero Honda whose sales reorded a modest rise of 1.2 % during the
same period And it holds more than half the market.Again TVS scooter which stands
next captured 23 percent market share.It looks that the scooter market is here to
stay. One interesting aspect of the schhoer market is that even when it came in and
also now it is considered as a feminine vehicle not fir for He-Men to ride.The
manufacrurers remaining in the field and those comint newly have caught the music
of he wrists and have taken steps to change the medicine accordingly.
Mr. Rajiv Bajaj has sounded a hopeful note when he recently said that perhaps they may
in time come back in the scooter market with some nofel innovations.

Let us hope that Hamara Bajaj rides again towards the Sunrise.The villagers are not
entirely free from the scourge of the villains. They are waiting for the hero to return!

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