In South Asia, it’s Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi
You have to give it to South Asians for out-of-the-box thinking. No access to a school bus? An auto-rickshaw will do.
No budget? How about a bicycle with seating made out of a plastic crate which fits two school kids and gets them where they have to go?
Not the ideal solution and certainly not the safest but typical of what is known in India as ‘jugaad’.
Smaller examples are the famous ‘miss call’ Indians use on the cell phone to communicate without paying for it – and the legions of creative ways of recycling just about everything. Every item has more than 9 lives and is reborn in many and surprising new avatars. In a country of over a billion people, of extreme wealth and poverty, of red tape and bureaucrats, the quick Indian mind has always found creative solutions of overcoming road-blocks.
As Devita Saraf wrote in the Wall Street Journal, “Etymology aside, I have always been convinced that the word indigenous arose from India. To make something out of limited resources is India’s genius and, therefore, indigenous.” This article shows all the creative ways businesses have flourished in India, from the amazing Amul milk co-operative to the Jaipur Foot prosthesis.
We’ve all come across innovative ways of getting results in India – do share any examples you may have!
A Lassi with Lavina reader, Rachna Daryanani, writes in: “I remember when my servant in Mumbai got a kid. He told me his father did not want to spend on a phone call, but he wanted to know immediately. So they planned to book a PP (person to person) call at the time. If it was a boy, it was to be booked on his name. If girl, his wife’s name. Either way he was to say person not available. This way he got the message his son was born,and no phone bill for his father!”
Do you have a photo or illustration which shows a unique glimpse of the Desi World? Do share with [email protected]