Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Mahayatra through Maharashtra

Tomorrow I leave for the first of a few trips as part of my internship (refer to map of Maharashtra state). I leave early morning for Aurangabad where I will spend the day observing Project Shakti in action in the villages around the city. The following day I will travel to Shirdi where once again I will get to observe Shakti Ammas as they go about their duties. And finally on Day 3, I will be in Nasik where I will get to interview some Shakti Ammas and understand what the missing links are.

I’m very excited about this trip not just because I’ve never travelled to these areas before, but also because of the sudden attention that rural India has been garnering in the media. I’m referring to two much emailed articles that came out in the WSJ and Mint newspapers today (Mint is a business newspaper that partners with WSJ). Rural India has been untouched by the recession and continues to consume and purchase more consumer products in the market than urban India. In fact, sales from rural India account for more than 50% of Unilever’s total sales in personal care products in India. Rural India has accounted for 50% of Vodafone’s new subscriptions for cell phone connections in the last year, and just today, the Indian prime minister has said that the economy will target for 9% growth rate, fuelled no doubt by the growing consumerism in the robust rural economy.

To know more about HUL’s Project Shakti, try this and this. This project has been successfully implemented in countries in Asia under Unilever Bangladesh (UBL) as Joyeeta and in Unilever Sri Lanka as Saubaghya.


Mahayatra: long journey

Amma: mother


JulyDream said...

Quite nifty... enjoy your travels.

Metal said...

Have fun! must br great to be back home.

miss wabbit said...

Hey nice picture, and an even nicer name, "mahayatra through maharashtra"!Take a lot of pics. Travelling to the rurals areas can be an eye opener and a humbling experience too!

Adi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Adi said...

Since you are going to Aurangabad and Nasik, don't forget to visit Ajanta Elora caves at Aurangabad. the city also hosts a replica of the Taj Mahal. The legendary Lakshman Rekha is located in Nasik (A small bridge stands instead at the spot.) I think Godavari starts from Nasik. At that point you will find boys dipping into the river completetly nude! Nuf said, have a blast! Get Lakshminarayan Chiwda for me if possible :-)!

MechaniGal said...

@JulyDream: I enjoyed the travels but came back with a bad throat :(

@Metal: I am more homesick for Madras in Mumbai than I am in C'ville! Strange!

@miss wabbit: Thanks. Definitely was a great learning experience. Will write about it soon.

@Adi: I went on work, not a vacation!! And no, I don't quite enjoy the gastronomical delights of this part of the country - too spicy for me!


Blog Widget by LinkWithin