Former Mumbai Police Commissioner and retired IPS officer Rakesh Maria is back making the headlines. Throughout his career as a policeman, Maria was one of the most talked-about officers from the Maharashtra Police. He unearthed and handled biggest cases in Mumbai over a period of 28 years. These included investigating the 1993 Mumbai blasts case, which is busting a module of the Indian Mujahideen in 2008 and solving the high profile Neeraj Grover murder case.
Now, Rakesh Maria is back in the news, and we are grateful to his recently published autobiography. Two cases are particularly in the focus. The very first is the 2012 Sheena Bora murder case during the investigation of which Maria got marching orders as the commissioner of Mumbai Police and was also promoted to director-general of home guards. Maria talks extensively about how taken aback he was at the abrupt transfer and reveals his version of events.
However, it is another case that Maria investigating that has caused a lot of (arguably unnecessary) controversy — includes the deadly 26/11 Mumbai terror attack. In his book, Rakesh Maria has also written in detail about his role during the attack. At the time, he was the joint commissioner (crime) in Mumbai. During the attacks, Maria took control of the Mumbai Police’s control room. Later, he investigated the terror attack.
In his autobiography, Rakesh Maria has also recounted his time investigating the 26/11 terror attack. And, thanks to a cursory reading of his account, controversy is back to hound him. First, let’s look at what prompted the controversy.
Maria in his book also writes about how the conspiracy was hatched in Pakistan and how ten youngsters were prepared to the attack Mumbai by the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT). Maria writes that the youngsters were also given a new identity before the attack.
Maria writes, ‘Soon their hair was cut and beards shaved off, new clothes and shoes were purchased for them and they were given watches set to Indian time. The labels on their clothes were removed to prevent identification… New photographs were clicked to make fake identity cards to pass them off as Indian Hindus. To complete Hindu impersonation, they were instructed not to forget tying the red sacred thread around their wrists.’
Elaborating on the conspiracy, Maria also writes, ‘If all had gone well he Ajmal Kasab, the only one of the ten terrorists will be caught alive and would have been dead with a red string tied around his wrist like a Hindu. We would have found an identity card on this person with the fictitious name Samir Dinesh Choudhari, student of the Arunoday Degree and P.G College.’ Maria goes on to take a jibe at the media that there would have been the screaming headlines in newspapers about how ‘Hindu’ terrorists had attacked Mumbai and ‘over-the-top’ TV journalists would have made a beeline to interview the “Hindu terrorist’s” family and neighbours.
Of course Maria doesn’t mention that it probably would have been one of his subordinates who would have leaked the information about the ‘Hindu terrorists’ to the media. Anyway, the point is that the Maria’s “revelations” have generated a controversy.
The BJP was the first to react, with a Union minister asking why Maria was speaking up now. The minister tied it to the term ‘Hindu terror’ that was in the popular usage during the UPA era and said it was a big conspiracy hatched by the Congress on the instructions of then home minister Chidambaram.
Interestingly, Marria’s “revelations” are nothing new. The information about the fake ID cards is part of the chargesheet filed in the 26/11 terror attack case. However, what is even more interesting is that Maria’s own book contradicts the suggestion that the LeT planned to portray 26/11 as an act of ‘Hindu terrorism’.
In his book, Maria also gives details about a telephonic conversation between one of the ten terrorists and his handler back in Pakistan. The conversation was being tapped by Indian agencies. Maria writes, ‘In the meanwhile the handlers and the gunmen started working on using some of the hostages to make demands on the government of India as was planned, through the live TV interviews “
During the conversation — which is also part of the charge sheet — the handler tells the terrorist that if he was asked about his organisation, he was to say that he was associated with the Deccan Mujahideen.
KFC Gets Rid Of Iconic Tagline ‘It’s Finger-Lickin’ Good’ After 64 Years In View Of The Pandemic
Whenever someone says ‘It’s Finger-Lickin’ Good’, KFC is what comes to our mind. This 64 year old and of one of the most successful food chains in the market has decided to get rid of its iconic tagline due to coronavirus. As the number of cases is rising day by day, the food chain has shown its concern and changed its tagline which was not at all in the purview of safety measures prescribed. However, the global chief marketing officer of KFC has assured that the tagline has been suspended temporarily only and it will be brought back once situation will restore to normal.
Reason of suspending tagline
The main reason behind suspending the iconic tagline of KFC was the ongoing pandemic. The tagline was not following the safety measures prescribed during a pandemic. On Monday, when KFC announced that it will be suspending its slogan, it also called it “most inappropriate slogan for 2020”. In a statement, the company said, “Think we can all agree, this year has been like no other and, right now, our slogan doesn’t feel quite right. So, for that reason, we’ll be pressing pause on using it in our advertising, for a little while.” As the safety measures include not touching face or eyes with unwashed hands, KFC found it’s slogan inappropriate for this year.
Statement of Global Chief Officer at KFC
Catherine Tan-Gillespie, the global chief officer at KFC has made a statement regarding the slogan. She has also assured the customer that the only tagline is changing but the food will remain the same. Her statements also made it clear that the suspension of a tagline is temporary and it will be restored once this pandemic situation will be over. In her statement, she said, “We find ourselves in a unique situation — having an iconic slogan that doesn’t quite fit in the current environment. While we are pausing the use of ‘It’s Finger-Lickin’ Good’, rest assured the food craved by so many people around the world isn’t changing one bit.
KFC as a global brand
KFC has been one of the most successful food chains of restaurants in the global market. It is popular in almost every corner of the world. But as a global brand, the responsibility of the food chain company is also great. The part is that KFC realizes this responsibility and has taken steps by keeping it in mind.
The Global cases for Coronavirus are increasing and this is a matter of concern. What KFC has done is an example of Corporative Social Responsibility and the other big brands should also realize this as well. Customers are very happy at this decision of KFC as the brand has taken favourable steps for their safety. All we can do now is praise KFC and pray for the situation to get normal so that we can once again enjoy listening to the iconic tagline of KFC.
Roshni Nadar Malhotra: India’s Richest Woman And New HCL Tech Chairperson
Roshni Nadar Malhotra who became India’s richest woman has now taken over the position of chairperson of HCL Technology. She is the only child of the founder of Tech giant HCL Shiv Nadar and succeeded him to be appointed as Chairman of her father’s company. Her father will continue on as managing director and chief strategy officer in the company. Roshni Nadar Malhotra is able to achieve this much just as the age of 38. In the year 2019, she had an estimated net worth of Rs 36,800 crore which made her India’s richest woman.
Early Life, Education and Career of Roshni Nadar Malhotra
Roshni Nadar Malhotra was born in the Delhi in 1982. She went to Vasant Valley School to complete her early education. After that, she completed her graduation from Northwestern University in Illinois, US. She pursued her graduation in Radio, Communication and TV. Then she pursued her Master’s degree in Business Administration from Kellogg.
After completing her education, Roshni began her career as a news producer in the UK. Her first job was at Sky News in London. She has also had internships with CNN and CNBC. She came back to India and began to work as a producer. After working in some companies, Roshni was promoted to the post of CEO within just a year of joining her company in the year 2009. She was just 27 then. She also worked with HCL in the year 2013 as Additional Board Director.
Roshni’s interest in Social enterprise
Roshni has been interested in working for a social cause. She is the trustee of Shiv Nadar Foundation, which works for the education and has established some of India’s top schools and Colleges. Her venture, Vidyagyan School at Bulandshahr in UP offered free education to the children belonging to the rural areas. She is also the chairperson of Vidyagyan Leadership Academy, which works for the empowerment of underprivileged children through education. She is also interested in working for the cause of Education and Wildlife Conversation. For this, she has also established The Habitat Trust. The Habitat Trust is a foundation working to protect India’s natural species and their habitats. In one of her interviews with Business Today, Roshni said, “Money-Making and education do not go together.”
Roshni has won many awards and achievements in her journey. Along with the title of “India’s Richest Woman” in the year 2019, she has also been featured in the list of “The World’s Most Powerful Women” from 2017 and 2019. She is the 54th World’s Most Powerful Woman according to Forbes World’s 100 Most Powerful Women List of 2019.
While talking about her entering into her father’s business, Roshni says that it is not always easy to work with what you have inherited from your parents. According to her, if you inherit something which your parents have created then you must learn about it to be accountable. She has been receiving a lot of congratulating comments from everyone. We also congratulate her on her success and wish for better performance of HCL Technologies under her supervision.
Mukesh Ambani beats Warren Buffet to become 6th richest man in the world
Mukesh Ambani, the chairman of Reliance has recently beaten Warren Buffet to become 6th richest man in the world. Ambani has been rising steadily among the richest people in the world. Not just in the list of top 10 richest men in the world but becoming 6th richest man is the wonder Ambani has performed with a net worth of $68.3 billion. Mukesh Ambani is considered as one of the fastest rising billionaires in the world.
Net Worth and reasons for the sudden jump
According to Bloomberg, Mukesh Ambani has a net worth of $72.4 billion while Forbes claims it to be $70.1 billion. But this latest jump in the ranking is not a miracle but his latest deal with petroleum giant BP which made him earn the profit of $1 billion. If we look at his company Reliance so it has shown a growth of 25% since the beginning of the year. This is an impressive figure as Coronavirus has already impacted most of the businesses. Reliance Jio has been successful in attracting investments for the last 9 months and now it is successful in making Reliance net debt-free. Though the company wanted to achieve this goal at the end of March 2021 yet it became possible about nine months earlier.
Mukesh Ambani is the only Asian to reach the list of the richest men in the world. Of course, he is the richest man in Asia. The share prices of RIL have been doubled which is one of the major reasons for such a hike in the position of Ambani. One more reason that contributes to his rising high in the list is receiving around $15 billion of investment from companies like Facebook and Silver Lake in March.
Top 5 Richest Men in the World
According to the index, the top richest men in the world are Jeff Bezos with a net worth of $124, Bill Gates with a net worth of $115 billion, Bernard Arnault with a net worth of $94.5 billion, Mark Zukerberg with a net worth of $90.8 billion and Steve Ballmer with a net worth of $74.6 billion at fifth. Mukesh Ambani has also beaten SpaceX owner Elon Musk and Alphabet Inc. co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page to become the 6th richest men in the world.
As India is already shifting towards digital business through an e-commerce platform, Mukesh Ambani is also trying to focus more on his digital business. India is overall attracting a lot of foreign investment. The google has also recently said that it will also spend $10 billion for accelerating digital technology in India in the coming years.
Way Forward for domestic enterprises
Mukesh Ambani has reached the steady growth in the level of his riches. But this list of billionaires keeps going through a lot of change. But for the time being, Ambani is the richest man of Asia a 6th richest men in the world and due to this, his company Reliance will attract a good amount of investments in the future which might also open ways for heavy investment in other Indian companies. This will boost the economy of the nation as a whole.
Finally Some Good News To Cherish, Digital Revenue Of Indian IT Companies’ Crosses $50 Billion
Globally, Indian IT companies are well known for their performance. However, in 2017, analysts had stated that the Indian Information Technology was unable to respond positively to the advances of technology in the areas of AI/ML, sensors and robotics. Some even predicted its downfall.
Well, it looks like the Indian IT industry won’t give up so easily. Figures from the Indian IT association Nasscom show that these new digital areas have exceeded the $50 billion revenue mark, last fiscal. This amounts to more than a quarter of the total revenue of $191 billion.
Let’s know more
India shows tremendous advancement in AI/ML, sensors, and robotics
The statistics show that in the case of top-notch IT companies the value is even higher. For TCS the digital accounted for 33% of their overall revenues, for Infosys, it accounted for 42%, and for Wipro, it accounted up to 41% of the overall revenue in the same fiscal year.
These numbers are a clear measure of valuable progress. However, since each firm has different parameters to define digital, these numbers cannot be compared.
Since 2012, Nasscom has started breaking out digital. In that year, the value of digital in the sector’s total revenue was only 4%. But as we moved to 2015 and 2016, the value was estimated at $16 billion to $20 billion, a major boost to 11%-14% of the overall IT sector’s revenue.
Know what the experts say on this
The CEO of IT consulting firm HfS Research, Phil Fersht believes that Indian IT companies have established a significant ‘permission to play’ through the years. He feels the secret ingredient of the industry rests in the IT firms’ sheer perseverance, love for technology, and wide-spread entrepreneurship. He said, “Today, many of the Indian IT firms are genuine alternatives to the traditional integration firms such as Deloitte and IBM to perform high-level digital work, a lot higher up the value stack when compared to five years ago.”
“I credit Indian IT talent with a marked improvement in learning new programming languages and becoming strong at mastering low-code software, such as RPA, Salesforce and Pega”, he further adds.
The Lee Kong Chian professor of marketing at Singapore Management University, Nirmalya Kumar said since 2010, the Indian IT industry has recognized the fact that they need to adapt to digital enterprises as all their customers were changing too. The clients need to work on their budgets to resolve the front end issues of digitally connecting with customers via websites and apps, instead of working on the maintenance of the legacy IT infrastructure.
He said, “Client focus had shifted to revenues and customer experience, which meant going digital had become a boardroom imperative.” “And for Indian IT, to make the transformation, digital talent was the constraint, not budgets”, he adds.
The MD at Wedbush Securities, Moshe Katri acknowledges that since the past few years, IT companies in India have extensively taken charge of acquainting employees with new digital technologies, recruiting new employees with advanced knowledge in novel technologies. The companies have also directed sales forces towards digital and cross-selling digital-based projects amidst their existing legacy client base.
A distinguished person from the Carnegie Mellon University’s college of engineering, Vivek Wadhwa, who once criticized the IT industry, today gives a changed opinion. He felt that if India’s IT industry does not wake up and reinvent itself; it would be in free fall. Today, he adds, “But it did wake up from its slumber and launch a series of new initiatives in new industries.”
In his upcoming book, he discusses how companies that comprehend the exponential curves can dominate the future. He also talks about how legacy firms have an upper hand over newly established startups and ‘big equals slow and stodgy’ is a myth. He concludes, “It takes a lot of effort to get them to move, as it did for Indian IT, but when they do, they can move mountains.”
Zomato And Swiggy Have Started Delivering Groceries Across India
After Zomato, Swiggy has now started delivering groceries and essentials across various cities in India. Swiggy has partnered with retail grocery stores like Vishal Mega Mart, and is already active in tier-1 and tier-2 cities.
This isn’t the first time Swiggy is delivering groceries. It launched Swiggy Stores last February for groceries but this service had been limited to Bengaluru and Gurugram. It also introduced Swiggy Go which is like Dunzo, and lets users order products from a store and get them delivered.
Swiggy now has a dedicated section for groceries on its Swiggy app, and it is visible in places where the service is available. The company also plans to expand its delivery service by partnering with more FMCG brands, Gagdets360 reported. Last week, Zomato also started its grocery delivery service in India. Called “Zomato Market”, Zomato users can order groceries and essentials within the app. The maximum order capacity is 12 kg per order, while the minimum amount is Rs 300. Zomato had first piloted this service in Kerala, Delhi and Punjab, but it has now expanded to over 80 cities.
Deepinder Goyal, founder and CEO, Zomato, said in a company blog on Tuesday:
“We have started grocery delivery in 80+ cities across India to help with the supply of essentials. Our delivery network in the country is only second to India Post, and we are putting in every effort to make sure that we put it to good use to serve the community.”
The Zomato app now features Zomato Market that lists local grocery stores in an area.
Food ordering apps, delivery apps, and cab hailing companies are leveraging their available delivery executives to double up as carriers of essential items such as staples and personal hygiene goods.
They are doing this by tying up with several fast-moving consumer goods companies and even partnering with online grocery companies such as BigBasket and Grofers.
Online grocery retailer Grofers, for instance, is working with Zomato to get its delivery fleet onboard. Last week, Mumbai-based packaged consumer goods company Marico, said it has launched “Saffola Store” in partnership with online food ordering apps Zomato and Swiggy to deliver its range of oats and cooking oils to consumers. On Zomato, Saffola Store is available to some shoppers in parts of Delhi-NCR and Bangalore. It will gradually be rolled out in other cities such as Mumbai, Kolkata, Chandigarh and Ahmedabad starting next week, Marico said in a statement to the press on Friday.
The global pandemic is prompting the consumer goods industry to partner up as large packaged consumer goods companies that rely on sales through small neighborhood stores and large grocery stores come together to ease last-minute delivery.
Goyal also listed steps the company has taken since the country entered its three week lockdown that has disrupted several businesses, including restaurants and food delivery services.
The company has rolled out “contactless delivery” amid consumer concerns around the contagious disease.
“Customers can opt to allow the delivery partner to leave the package outside their home, ensuring no human-to-human interaction and hence lowering risk of any transmission,” he said.
The online food delivery company said it is also asking restaurants to “self-declare” their compliance with hygiene practices as mandated by the WHO, apart from asking restaurant partners to follow strict hygiene standards. Delivery partners too are being asked to share a daily self-declaration on hygiene.
“We are making a big push to ensure hygiene standards are being followed by restaurants and passing on that information to users so that they can make an informed decision and are assured of the safety and hygiene standards of the food,” he said.
Moreover, it has temporarily paused cash on delivery, urging users to opt for online payments instead.
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