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.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

the first ever Slutwalk in Kolkata

At a time when the lady Chief Minister of the state shouts at the media and tells that a rape case is “sajano” (made up… to scandalize her government) and ultimately proven wrong (Adding fuel to the fire, State Minister for Sports Madan Mitra had also questioned the "integrity" of the rape victim in the incident on Park Street in February), the “slut walk” took place in Kolkata (erstwhile capital of colonial India and the capital of West Bengal, an eastern state of India).

It is an everyday occurrence for girls who go out in Kolkata. Ogling, songs, catcalls and whistles, teasing is something every woman, more often than not, experiences. This year alone more than 400 persons have been arrested on charges of teasing in Kolkata. Yet, by and large, this form of sexual harassment is ignored both by the victims and the people in general. “Many young women nowadays take a firm stand against such insults. But many more remain silent more being afraid of the stigma than ignoring it,” said Ms Rina Sarkar, OC, women's grievance cell of Kolkata Police. Very few cases are reported with the annual count being somewhere near 90, while the number of incidents that occur is much more. Many busy areas in Central and North Kolkata are infamous for being teasers’ haven. “Suddenly, someone will bump into you, or give a quick shove. Some random comments will suddenly come from nowhere, or someone will start stalking you for a distance, trying very hard to talk to you,” said Jayeeta Haldar, a student. Ms Ushashi Chatterjee, a BPO employee, said one day a man followed her all the way to the metro station, asking for her name and phone number, even as she steadfastly ignored him.
“I was so scared, because the pavement was dark and he was fast catching up with me,” she said. “What a relief it was to reach the metro station.” Unfortunately, many police officers seem to turn a blind eye to such events. Many college students complain that the ill-lit footpaths of Park Street, just beyond the police station, become unsafe after sundown. But a police officer countered saying there are no such problems... and the area is perfectly safe.
“Many women do not know that they can make use of Section 509 of IPC, which deals with teasing,” said Ms Sarkar. “Fortunately, women are willing to protest and not hide in shame, as it was deemed earlier.”
The first ever slut walk in the otherwise politically emotional city saw teachers joining hands with students and mothers with daughters to do away with the myth that a girl in a skimpy dress is simply asking to be raped. It started from Jadavpur University in the evening and ended at Triangular Park. "It's bound to make certain people very uncomfortable… There's a conspiracy of silence that should be broken,", said Rimi B Chatterjee, faculty at the department of English at Jadavpur University. She was not dressed in her usual starched saris. She chose to wear a spaghetti dress that left, well, most of her torso bare. Not bare, actually. The word 'slut' was inscribed in bold black across her chest.

The SlutWalk saw men marching alongside women. Said Somek, an aspiring actor, who took part in the event, "It is not about gender. It is about sending a message that please don't judge us by what we wear. Change of government doesn't change society and we need to address that problem." We also spotted Hemley Gonzalez, dressed in a lungi, leading the movement. "This is a global movement that's why I am here. India boasts of being progressive, time it became so in reality," he said. Around 300 youth perticipated in the walk.

Video of the event : http://ishare.rediff.com/video/news-and-politics/kolkata-slut-walk/6929756

More information on the Kolkata rape case : http://www.hindustantimes.com/India-news/Kolkata/2-arrested-in-Kolkata-rape-case/Article1-813430.aspx

More news on the eve teasing in Kolkata : http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2012-03-12/india/31152119_1_eve-teasing-kolkata-cop-lewd-comments

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The democracy of consumption and the hyped aspiration

The site on Anti- Counterfeit states “…However, markets are plagued by fakes, be it Stamps, Watches, Cigarettes, Cosmetics, Pharmaceuticals, FMCG goods, Auto Components, Software, Music, Films etc. resulting in significant loss to companies, corresponding evasion of Tax duties and violation of the rights of the consumer. Studies by industry associations bear this out, the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) estimates that the FMCG sector loses approx. 15% of its revenue to counterfeit goods with several top brands losing up to 30% of their business due to IP crime…” ; the  report also states “…The damage to companies is “immeasurable” because seizures represent a tiny portion of counterfeit goods and lost sales are only one part of the equation. Any attempt to quantify it seriously will underestimate the extent of the problem, but they will suffer in terms of the reputation of their brands. The boom is being driven by the Internet, which makes it easier to find customers, and the development of cheap, high-quality printing equipment that allows criminals to mass-produce packaging. Growing trade with Asia, where trademark rules are less rigorously enforced, is also contributing to the trend…”

The fake goods are in abandon at Indian Metro cities as well as rural and urban areas. The rapid consumption of counterfeits in developing countries might be a challenge for the established brands, but to me, the counterfeits are the symbols of “democracy of consumption” and a result of hyped aspiration created by the very brands  those are said to be .

The over promoted (media created) hype (ie. The launch of new iPhone…) that’s strategically spread in the developing countries are actually the “killer” to slowly murder the “American dream” which an average youth is made to see and yet not being able to avail!

The result is obviously frustrating. The fake/ counterfeit is actually the good "safety tab" for the society to somehow bridge the gap and lets one be happy with a copy. The individual who is buying / availing the fake also knows that it’s not an original product and neither can he afford an original.

So, unless the socio-economic gap is reduced and merged (which is anyway impossible within next one decade or more) the counterfeits will exist and flourish in India (or any developing country) to blister the brands whoever is being hyped by the other side of society!

Friday, May 11, 2012

the essence of motherhood in india

The aspect / perception of a "mother" is changing towards "mom" with shorter wavelength of emotion as depicted in the cover of Time Magazine in recent time. The eternal mother still remains at the center of family bonding and emotion in this subcontinent. The iconic photograph at left was taken by my uncle Mr. Benu Sen and reflects the right mood of an Indian mother.  Even though the traditional surveys (as published in my last post) denotes that the contemporary "moms" are more career focused and least prefers "motherhood" but the root of "taking care of children" remains at the essence of emotional bonding rather than physical presence of the child-mother. When an Indian lady becomes mother, her first focus still is the child but not the career.

Urban Indian women choose career over motherhood: Survey

A majority of young married working women in Indian metropolices are choosing career over family as they are in no mood to raise kids, a survey released here Thursday said.

About 1,200 married, working women without children in the age group of 24-30 in Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and other major cities were interviewed by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham) during March and April.

While Mumbai topped the survey, Bangalore came in second followed by Delhi. "Over 650 of the working women said that they won't be starting a family anytime soon as career advancement and higher education was their priority, which they couldn't sacrifice to raise kids," said the survey.

Another 200 respondents were of the view that pregnancy would spoil their physical appearance while around 70 considered themselves too young to be a mother.

However, about 220 respondents had no qualms in becoming mothers as it would make them feel happier, and were not fearful of the effect motherhood might have on their career.

The remaining candidates wanted to accumulate enough wealth before they started a family. The survey also included interview of about 800 stay-at-home mothers and 40 percent of them said that it was better to raise their kids at home rather than pay a bomb at day care units.

Besides, a majority of them said they were proud of choosing motherhood over work as it would lead to comprehensive development of their wards during the pre-school years.

About 35 percent said they had sacrificed their social life to raise their kids while 25 percent said they regretted not being able to work, tangled as they were in managing their houses and kids.

Source:  http://in.finance.yahoo.com