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Monday, August 1, 2011

Letter to Mr. Ratan Tata

This was a letter I had written to Mr. Ratan Tata Sir.
the best part was I received a genuine reply straight from the Chairman's office !
I shall scan and upload the reply letter later.

28th February 2011

Dear Mr. Ratan Tata Sir,

I am an avid patriot of Tata & Sons and all their products.
My home & life is FILLED with varied products.

From the water (Tata Swach),
The pipes that carry the water (Tata Steel),
The Salt that we use (Tata Namak)
The tea that stimulates us (Tata Tea)
The groceries & food that we consume (Tata Star Bazaar)
The crockery in which we serve (Tata Ceramics)
The celebrations that we have (Taj group of hotels)
 The clothes that we wear (Westside)
The jewels that we adorn (Tanishq)
The watches that we use (Titan)
The car that we drive (Tata Indica)
The electronic appliances that we use (Croma).
Our life is primarily made convenient & nice only thanks to TATA. An icon, a brand, an influence par excellence. Because, your role in our life does not end with the mere products, but the values that we learn.
That customer should be treated with respect & utmost priority.
Quality should never be compromised.
Money is secondary, but principles & morals come first.
It’s not necessary to be corrupt to succeed
& above all, one must always keep doing good.

I want to take this opportunity to thank you & congratulate you for some of the recent advances & improvements & some things which I sincerely wish would be better.
1.     Westside: what a refreshing change! The brand has just raised its standards for the better! The new line of clothing is amazing, the patterns & designs throughout is a pleasant change. Above all the entire shopping experience has been raised a notch. The staff & customer service is the BEST amongst such stores. The courtesy, warmth, respect with which your employees treat the customers is a pleasant change against what it used to be & what it still is in other stores like Pantaloons & Shoppers Stop. Please keep up the good work!

2.     Titan: Another brand that just keeps on improving. Though the Orion & Aviator series were really an eye-sore. I have fallen in love all over again with Obaku, Octane & Edge. Truly international quality designs, good materials, some freshness & variety which was long overdue. The Flagship store in Mumbai is also a very good concept & the 1st for an Indian watch brand. I have written about it in detail on my blog & also Congratulated Mr. Suvendu Roy & Ms. Toranj Mehta in that regard. Once again, the customer service is Fantastic. The only brand that cares. With a watch for every hand & every budget. From the innovative FastTrack to the classy Nebula. Loved them all.

3.     Tanishq : Though not quite the most reasonable in its category, still decent service, Beautiful designs & the general thoughtfulness & warmth in all Tanishq outlets makes you feel nice about shopping there

4.     Tata Indicom: amazing competitive prices & finally some good service for both your Internet / Broadband services & GSM & CDMA Telecom services. Unfortunately, I jumped ship a few years ago, when both your Internet service & Telecom network were a major pain & grossly dissatisfying, but I am happy to see the change & whole heartedly recommend the brands today.

5.     Croma: another upcoming brand, yes upcoming, because it still leaves something to be desired for, when it comes from the same firm that has the Westside chain. Definitely Croma is marginally better than its competitors because it offers GENUINE discounts & products and does not literally fool & fleece the consumer like the other brands, but occasionally the pricing (usually the deciding factor) just dampens the whole show. Nevertheless, still love it & always will, especially now that a new branch has sprung up in my locality!

6.     Tata Ceramics: What a surprise! When one fine day, I spot an amazing looking piece of crockery & check the bottom to see the make & I see those 4 letters T A T A! That day itself I ended up buying quite a few pieces myself. The sheer quality, path breaking designs, the uniqueness & appeal, simply unmatched at that price. A true gem.
7.     Tata Motors: You may be reading this for the umpteenth time, but HATS OFF for the Tata Nano, truly a worldwide engineering marvel. I would love to own one, but my family fears for my safety & my past experience with Tata Motors left a bitter taste in my mouth. Yes, sadly so. Definitely you have simply grown from strength to strength & I feel very proud to see the beautiful indigenously manufactured passenger vehicles. From the days of the Tata Estate & Sierra, you have transformed leaps & bounds! Tata Sumo, Safari have both graced beautifully. & the change in fit & finish in the new cars have to be seen to be believed! The feature list of the Indigo Manza tempted me to buy it instantly, but alas, the nightmares of owing the Indica made me think again. Seriously, the cars are really very well thought, built with a lot of effort & above all Heart & Soul, for the regular Indian consumer & it shows. God bless you for that. You brought us on the map, made us a name worthy of considering, but it’s got miles to go before it starts getting the recognition it deserves. Whenever any popular Auto magazine or newspaper compares cars, in any segment, no one ever bothers to include the Tata vehicle of that segment. It is just not considered! Why so? Have you ever wondered? That why apart from some true enthusiasts the general consensus about buying a Tata car is so grossly negative. I wouldn’t blame them. The average Indian, like me, pumps in his hard earned money to buy the ‘luxury’ of a car, whichever segment he can afford, not to invite the additional burden of a fuel guzzling, half baked, poorly constructed, underperforming, high maintenance 4 wheels. I love my Indica, still do, the shape, the comfort, the joy! But it does come with its fair share of trouble. & when I test drove the Manza, I found most of the issues still persist. In today’s globally open Indian market with so many wonderful options to choose from, it hurts that my favourite Indian Tata cars are lagging behind. I really look forward to owing one again, if things improve. (still waiting before I make my decision Manza, Etios, Vento, Dzire or City)

8.     Tashi: for this Wonderful collection of shoes, finally something really classy, elegant and true leather shoes. Very nice collection indeed. But seriously needs better branding ! the insole of the shoes has that particular category named etched, but nowhere does one find the word ‘Tashi’ mentioned. Just 3 red-dots which are synonymous with another well known brand. Even the belts & the belt buckles have not a single insignia or motif on them. Such expensive simple well crafted pieces of leather, but not even a small ‘brand name’ to make them shine apart and identifiable. Guess like all Tata products known to me, this one too will have a extremely slow start, disappointing initially and then will excel and flourish. (hopefully not after I lose patience and switch loyalties) Nevertheless, both my & my dad have ‘happy feet’ thanks to Tashi. (previously thanks to Woodlands, Provogue and Metro)
Or is it that I always choose the Tata marquee to early? As in instance of the Telecom & Automobile sector, that I put my faith, trust & money, when you were growing rather than opt for Tata when it finally learns the ropes & then comes of age? Is that what happened, when you bought Land Rover & Jaguar? Because it does seem that paint quality & a lot of other things in your cars improved only after that! Even with the watches, after you incorporated Tommy Hilfiger & Xylus in your showrooms, there was major change in the variety, designs & quality of your other watches.
I sincerely want to thank you for one thing though. My father always told me “Be Indian, Buy Indian”. If we don’t support our economy, who will? We should not allow these foreign brands to come in & rape our country for their own growth. Thanks to you & ONLY you, am I able to abide by his advice in MOST walks of life.
Be it the Titan instead of the Fossil / Tissot / Swatch.  Or the Indica instead of the Santro/ Fabia / Swift.

I am happy; that I could chose what I wanted, because I had the options, thanks to you.
But now, it does become difficult, more often that I would like it to be.
Now, I hesitate, like I did for the Manza. It had my heart beating & it was love at 1st sight when I saw the brochure. But after I held the door handles & steering wheel, all the other cars were calling out to me more strongly & my heart continued to beat faster, but out of anxiety & disappointment.
What worries me even more is that ALL this was possible because of YOUR persistence & vision. The man Mr. Ratan Tata. Who has worked relentlessly to keep his family values upheld at all times. Who has strived for excellence & growth of this wonderful country India & provided such a vast plethora of commendable services for his countrymen. I am not in the least unaware of your contribution to this county at all levels, be it education, employment or essential commodities. & that is what makes you one of my IDOLS. Mind you Sir; I have only a handful few. But I deeply respect you for what you have done for all of us Indians, far & wide.
I shudder to think, what will happen, now that you have announced your retirement. It would be selfish of me to expect you to keep working for infinity just for the betterment of this country & of course, my personal benefits. But Sir, I feel very strongly as an Indian, that there are very few positive vectors that maintain the harmonious balance between good & evil in our economic & social reality of India. One of them is YOU. & none of them as powerful, multi-headed, dedicated, genuine & pure as Your firm & you.
Life goes on, it always does. For everyone. The God Almighty, He always has His plans. And there is nothing that anyone can do about it.
Yet, I request you, to once give a thought, of how things will be, after you leave.

An excerpt from the poem ‘If’ by Rudyard Kipling:
If you can dream--and not make dreams your master,
If you can think--and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools:
Sir, what you have built has taken years and is not a feat that can be replicated, ever. In today’s India, centuries old monuments are not taken care off, then pray who shall take care of such a vast empire?
A machinery that is currently fuelling the growth of this nation of abundance. An entity so big, wide & deep, that any change will impact the course of the future & the history that it writes behind.
So where will we find, people, because definitely one won’t suffice to fill your shoes, who shall share your vision, sentiment & above all purity of heart to be able to lead & steer this ship the way it should be?
I pray, that you have an answer to this, for my sake, our sake & the country in general. I know you will, I know you do. Because that is who you are. Yet, I wanted to express my concern and gratitude for all that you have done & all that will be done, because of you.
Thank YOU!

Dr. Suraj A. Dhirwani

1 comment:

Mrigank said...

Dr. Suraj thank you for loving TATA brand so much. I also a die hard fan of TATA and proud owner of NANO(2 qnty). except some products mainly because of their cost. I read you letter to Mr. Ratan Tata, but does not found its reply letter. If you have no issue please post it here or send t to my email id


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Original Work by Dr. Suraj A. Dhirwani

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