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Sunday, Nov 22, 2020 13:30 [IST]

Last Update: Sunday, Nov 22, 2020 07:51 [IST]

Foot Soldiers in the War against Pandemic

KAMAL BARUA

While I had bought a study table on the other day, I was overwhelmed by Tata’s lovely gesture for customer. I wasn’t aware of a surprise gift until I opened the drawerat home that was never even disclosed during sale and purchase by the dealer. That is nothappening in-store experience these days. Before I set to bargain, they deduct the discount. And I was happy to pay 18% GST that goes to Central Government (CGST) and the State Government (SGST) instantly. The gift is a key ring saying “we also make tomorrow” from Tata Steel. It brought us a happy smile over tea at home in the evening.

 

We have not experiencedsuch groundbreaking marketingearlier. It was never easy to find happy shopping either. Commercial center thronged with shoppers.Consumers today are largely provoked by offers and fake promises as disruptive technology into the market made sellers’ days difficult. Path-breaking Television opened up a new era for shoppers in marketing. And smartphone makes our day’s digital.Now we are living in virtual world after threats and outbreaks of Coronavirus. And finally business are ruined by continue lockdown. The global economy suffered trillions in losses.

 

Millions of jobs go down the drain across India and lakhs of Indian nationals working abroad have returned due to the pandemic. It appears every third white-collar professional has lost his job. The hardest hit by the lockdown are the poor, daily wagers, construction workers, street vendors and the homeless. But a recent WhatsApp video “More together – PoojaDidi” has inspired me to write on “Kuchaisa bora kaamkorokidukanchotipeaa jai”. Pooja Milk Center gave job losers a helping hand, in return employees made it miracle through a Facebook Post forhimmat and hausla (encourage) Puja dididuring Diwali. 

 

It was another story of an English Club Liverpool football star Sadio Mane, who is helping out the poor in his community in Banbali, Senegal. He had spent USD three hundred thousand on the construction of a high school, funded a stadium and a hospital project, and helped each family financially in his village and Liverpool jerseys to young soccer players in his community. But he refused to put that on any publicity as those people need help and he is helping. He believes in simplicity. InterestinglySadio Mane was spotted with cracked iPhone recently despite a millionaire.

 

Tatas and Ambani are two of the biggest names in the Indian economy. Their businesses generate wealth and employment galore for India. Although Tata group is bigger than Reliance in terms of market capitalization (11 lakh crore to nine lakh crore) but his personal stake is at less than 1%. Tata’s primary objective has always been the empowerment of the country. In fact, more than 66% of the company stake is held by the charitable organizations such as the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust, Sir Ratan Tata Trust, Tata Education Trust and others. If not for their philanthropic mindset, the Tatas could have become one of the most powerful families in the world, let alone India. At the same time MukeshAmbani holds a 48% stake of Reliance and donated 0.1% for social initiative of his total net worth.

 

The rise of the Tatashas begun from humble priest Jamsetji Tata to international industrialistRatan Tata. Tata is everywhere in India. Tata Iron and Steel, IIS Bangalore, India’s first hydroelectric plant Tata Power, Airlines, Hotel, Tata Chemical, Tea, Motor (TELCO), TCS and a township at Jamshedpur - you name it. Tata seems to own everywhere and the group continued philanthropic efforts with large donations for educational and social welfare initiatives. Tata Memorial Hospital inMumbai is for affordable cancer treatment.With nearly seven lakh employees, it is India’s third largest employer after Defence and Railways. Those were incredible stories of Tata Group. They create wealth to give back to the people by transferring ownership to charitable trusts.

 

Self Help Groups have risen to the extraordinary challenge during pandemic. They have come to the fore as foot soldiers in the war against Covid-19, meeting shortfalls in masks, sanitizers and protective equipment, running community kitchens, fighting misinformation and even providing banking and financial services to far-flung corners of our country.Yet we heardbig corporate like Ambani/Adaniand others from exploiting loopholes in India’s regulation. They cannot remain in business without turning a profit. Thus profitability helped to secure finance from a bank, attract investors to fund its operations and grow its business. At the same time, they must practice Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities to be made socially accountable in times of need. Poojadidi is not alone in this race. We can surely come over these dark days if we can do more together.

 

 

Sikkim at a Glance

  • Area: 7096 Sq Kms
  • Capital: Gangtok
  • Altitude: 5,840 ft
  • Population: 6.10 Lakhs
  • Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 to over 28,509 ft above sea level
  • Climate:
  • Summer: Min- 13°C - Max 21°C
  • Winter: Min- 0.48°C - Max 13°C
  • Rainfall: 325 cms per annum
  • Language Spoken: Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha, Tibetan, English, Hindi