What was the purpose anyway?

This afternoon I had been to the branch office of  ICICI Prudential Life Insurance in Kodambakkam high road, Chennai  and while i was waiting to be served, I saw an  advertisement as below.

I couldn’t believe that ICICI would be so culturally insensitive because as you can see, the message in this ad was predominantly in Hindi language.  While it is quite possible for some of the customers to know and understand Hindi, a large number of people may not.  And if the purpose of this mini-billboard was to educate and get people interested in buying the various products, they have failed because of some corporate diktat.

And I thought ICICI was an organization focussed on customers and aggressive in generating business!!



  1. February 20, 2012 at 10:18 am

    interesting to see an Ad in Hindi in Chennai. You touched upon it, that they clearly missed opportunities with potential non-hindi reading customers which may be a significant number in Chennai.

    • badrirag said,

      February 20, 2012 at 10:23 am


      Thanks for that lightning response. You are right. Not only are they missing opportunities but also irritating existing customers

    • badrirag said,

      February 23, 2012 at 12:19 am

      Hi Kapil,

      Its a clear reflection of “I don’t care” attitude and keeping with the MNC Culture that values consistency of trivialities like colour of the ad, font size etc than the content vibing with the local ground reality.


  2. nra8nra8 said,

    February 22, 2012 at 2:50 pm

    Dear Badri,

    I am not surprised by this at all, as I am aware that this is how the heavy headed honchos of ICICI behave, who are not only brainless in more ways than one but also insensitive in many ways !

    Thanks to the modern, seemingly secular MBA Culture that is prevailing in the overall hierarchy of the Bank, which has been widely remarked and severely commented by many during the past !

    That’s it for the time being from my end !

    Thus Spake N Ra !

    • badrirag said,

      February 23, 2012 at 12:12 am

      Dear Ramesh,

      Please do not air your personal prejudices and bias in this blog post by using phrases like “secular MBA Culture’ out of context. Anybody who has moved with Hindi-speaking people will clearly see this as yet another manifestation of their mistaken bigotry that everybody knows and must respond in Hindi. Which is why they seldom make the effort to learn the local language and launch into a conversation in Hindi without ascertaining whether the other knows the language. They cannot even grasp the reality that there are people who do not know Hindi.


  3. Mukund said,

    February 22, 2012 at 4:18 pm

    No Surprise!! I’ve been noticing this for at least a couple of years now…very common among Mumbai / Delhi based businesses, post-privatization…sometimes these ads make me feel that South is being neglected and we are cut off from India.

    • badrirag said,

      February 23, 2012 at 12:15 am

      Dear Mukund,

      You are true in your observation that many businesses do this and ICICI Pru is just an example. Please also read my response to another comment as to why it is happening.

      It is not that South is neglected but it is because we are not taking an exception to it and not assertively protesting. Possibly we do not want to be seen as “anti-national” or “bigoted” and hence putting up with this nonsense.


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