About INgene blog : First ever Indian Youth trend Insights blog

About INgene : First ever Indian Youth trend Insights blog:
This blog explores the detailed characteristics of Young-India and explains the finer & crucial differences they have with their global peers. The blog also establishes the theory of “adopted differentiation” (Copyright Kaustav SG,2007) and how the Indian & Inglodian youth are using this as a tool to differentiate themselves from the “aam aadmi” (mass population of India) to establish their new found identity.

The term youth refers to persons who are no longer children and not yet adults. Used colloquially, however the term generally refers to a broader, more ambiguous field of reference- from the physically adolescent to those in their late twenties.
Though superficially the youth all over the world exhibits similar [degree of] attitude, [traits of] interests & [deliverance of] opinion but a detailed observation reveals the finer differential characteristics which are crucial and often ignored while targeting this group as a valued consumer base. India is one of the youngest countries in the world with 60% of its population less then 24 years of age and is charted as the most prospective destination for the retail investment in the A. T. Kearney’s Global Retail Opportunity Report, 2007. With the first ever non-socialistic generation’s thriving aspiration & new found money power combined with steadily growing GDP, bubbling IT industry and increasing list of confident young entrepreneurs, the scenario appears very lucrative for the global and local retailers to target the “Youngisthan” (young-India). But, the secret remains in the understanding of the finer AIOs of this generation. The Indian youth segment roughly estimates close to 250million (between the ages of fifteen and twenty-five) and can be broadly divided (socio-psychologically) into three categories: the Bharatiyas, the Indians & the Inglodians (copyright Kaustav SG 2008). The Bharatiyas estimating 67% of the young population lives in the rural (R1, R2 to R4 SEC) areas with least influence of globalization, high traditional values. They are least economically privileged, most family oriented Bollywood influenced generation. The Indians constitute 31.5% (A, B,C, D & E SEC) and have moderate global influence. They are well aware of the global trends but rooted to the Indian family values, customs and ethos. The Inglodians are basically the creamy layers (A1,A SEC) and marginal (1.5% or roughly three million) in number though they are strongly growing (70% growth rate). Inglodians are affluent and consume most of the trendy & luxury items. They are internet savvy & the believers of global-village (a place where there is no difference between east & west, developing & developed countries etc.), highly influenced by the western music, food, fashion & culture yet Indian at heart.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Anti corruption movement, Anna phenomenon and the youth in India

Anna Hazare, widely known as the last Gandhian, who forced the federal government to agree to introduce stringent anti-graft legislation, has become a rallying point for youths in India. The 71-year-old former Indian army driver-turned-social reformer’s five-day hunger-strike, at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi galvanized youths across religions. It also imitated freedom fighter Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi who drove the mighty British imperialists out of India. Hundreds of thousands of people joined Hazare’s crusade. As the wave of support grew into an avalanche through candle-lit rallies in many towns and cities in India and from around the world through social network sites such as Facebook and Twitter, the April 5-9 fast for an anti-graft law shook the Congress-led federal government and brought it to its knees to concede to the popular demand. Hazare would not have evoked such unprecedented public support had it not been for his austere Gandhian lifestyle. The white topi (cap) worn and popularized by Gandhi is back, and has captured the popular imagination of the masses. Writing about the “Father of the Nation,” Einstein said that “generations to come will scarcely believe that such a one as this [Gandhi] ever in flesh and blood walked on this earth.” The half-naked fakir touched the scientist deeply. The next generation who will not see the last Gandhian - Hazare - in the flesh will perhaps express similar sentiments.Born Kisan Baburao Hazare, his journey from the non-descript Yadavbaba temple in Ralegan Siddhi, a village of 3,000 near Pune where he lives, to becoming a youth icon has been a remarkable four-decade long story.
Hazare’s singular motive to rid the country of corruption, especially in government, ignited the masses which have had to bribe officials to obtain basic documents such as passports or birth and death certificates. Two things changed the frail man’s life dramatically and spurred him into being the icon to the younger generation that he is today - poverty and divine intervention.

The voice of the youth against corruption is gathering momentum on campuses all around the country. Irrespective of political affiliations, students are in favour of the cause espoused by Anna Hazare’s anti-corruption campaign.Anna Hazare’s agitation has highlighted many a disconnect in today’s political setup. There is the disconnect between the young and the old schools in the Congress. The younger lot of MPs fear an Anna wave against corruption while the veterans hope to ride the Anna storm with the traditional recipe of caste combinations during elections. The public rhetoric by the MPs is different from their private views. Many are apprehensive that the 74-year-old man who has drawn a huge response from ordinary people all across the country — in all probability even he did not expect it — is making them redundant. The MPs, cutting across party lines, have to pay lip service to Anna because of the current public sentiment. The government, which sent him to Tihar jail, has suddenly started ‘saluting’ him, and Congress spokesman Manish Tewari has even apologised to Anna for calling him corrupt. The fear of being made irrelevant has united the political class to take up the issue of ‘Parliament’s supremacy’ and enacting laws following the due process, which includes referring it to the Standing Committee. Anna cannot be allowed to dictate a timeline or the contents of a bill to Parliament, they say. For, if they accept it, they would have no role though people have elected them.
If they give in to Anna’s demands, it would open a Pandora’s box, they claim. What if several thousand Kashmiris hold an indefinite fast demanding an independent Kashmir and threaten to die if their demand is not met? What would happen if several thousand Sangh supporters demand building the Ram temple at the disputed spot in Ayodhya? Or hundreds of millions insist that the government does away with OBC reservation in jobs and institutions… Should the government give in to all these demands just because thousands congregate and there is a fear that some may die? While politicians have a point, it is also true that they have suddenly woken up to their rights and duties as parliamentarians. Nobody squeaks when 17 bills are passed in an hour or when demands for grants are guillotined year after year within a few seconds. And, as those gathered at Ramlila are quick to point out, politicians themselves have brought the situation upon themselves. The fact is people are now finding a connection between the high-level loot (the entire Anna episode has to be seen against the backdrop of the 2G spectrum allocation scam and the Commonwealth Games 2010 scam) and their plight as they have to battle rising prices and unemployment. Though a handful at Ramlila might have actually studied the pros and cons of the Jan Lokpal Bill, they support it because they suspect the intent of the government and the political class. Today, Anna’s bill has become synonymous with the fight against corruption. His indefinite fast has touched many hearts, mostly urban, middle class and net-savvy Indians. But MPs admit the more the agitation lingers, the deeper will be the impact on the country. Already several MPs have been gheraoed in the hinterland. For good or for bad, Anna has captured the moment. Given the support he has, he is no longer pushing for just a discussion on his bill in Parliament. That was his demand about a month ago. Now, he wants Parliament to pass the bill and in his given timeframe. Naturally, this is difficult for every political party as MPs will have no leeway in government matters. Whatever the outcome of Anna’s agitation — and the situation is still fluid — he has given a jolt to the political class. Let us hope that the agitation will strengthen both the citizenry and the functioning of Parliament.
Padmaraj Menon, a final-year law student, said he backed the new Jan Lokpal Bill suggested by Anna Hazare. “There is a quote that goes like this; ‘Corruption is more dangerous than prostitution.’ Prostitution may endanger the moral values of an individual but corruption endangers the moral and ethical fabric of the entire nation. The level of corruption indicates the economic backwardness of the country. So I am supporting the bill.
Sanitha T S, a post-graduate student of Maharaja’s College has no doubt regarding her stand. “Fight against corruption is always good for society. I express my solidarity to Anna’s movement,” she said.

The crusade against corruption unleashed by Anna Hazare has given a platform for each and everyone to voice their opinions they have been pent-up for long. In connection with this, seminars and discussions were held in many colleges.
“The campaign is not to support a person but to back a noble cause. We support it whole-heartedly. There are many offices like village offices and police stations where people often knock for help. But it has become a breeding place for corruption. So it is good that these offices come under the purview of the bill,” said Janardhana Shenoy, general secretary, SFI.
Though they are supporting Anna’s cause they have their apprehensions too. “The campaign against corruption is always welcome. But it should not throw any challenge to the existing Parliamentary system. The first and major step in this regard is to eschew bribe,” said Jinto John, district president, KSU, Kerala.
For infotech professional Sachin Dombe, the Independence Day weekend starting on August 13 indeed became an extended one. He decided to extend his leave by a day on Tuesday, citing support for anti-corruption crusader, Anna Hazare’s Lokpal Bill movement, as the reason. Hazare, in his appeal televised across the country on Monday and Tuesday, urged people to participate in a mass movement to coincide with his fast-unto-death stir from Tuesday in support of a strong Lokpal Bill.
More than 40 voluntary groups in Pune organised a rally from Nal Stop to Balgandharva Chowk on Tuesday morning to support Hazare. Nearly 3,000 youth participated in the agitation. At Balgandharva Chowk, the volunteers sat on a relay fast and a makeshift pandal was set up opposite Balgandharva Rangmandir. They raised slogans and sang patriotic songs. Dombe was one of the many young professionals who took the day off to participate in this movement.

“I have taken a day off on Tuesday to be present for the rally and the relay fast,” said Dombe, who carried an “arrest me” placard and wore an “I am Anna” Gandhi cap. Like him, many other youngsters were in the forefront of the protest. Telecom professional Deboshri Mitra travelled from Kharadi to participate in the rally and the relay fast. She had taken the day off on Tuesday and was planning to decide whether to take leave on Wednesday too. Her colleague, Harshal Marathe’s leave was not sanctioned, yet he made it a point to be present for the rally on Tuesday morning. “We have been conducting the campaign on behalf of the India Against Corruption (IAC) in our company and our friends since April this year,” he said.
The Internet is being extensively used by young information technology (IT) and other professionals from Pune to spread the word.
“The Facebook page of IAC is flooded with hits and we are updating the latest news on it,” he said.
Vikas Sutar and Shrikant Sapkal, who were among the protesters in Pune, said they felt this was a ‘now or never’ situation as far as the Lokpal Bill was concerned. They felt compelled to participate in the public movement.


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