Future of scams in India

We are in a scam bull-run. Every week, there’s something new. It does mean that scammers have had a great run last few months/years/decades, but look closely and you’ll notice that a lot of these are recent scams. For instance, CWG 2010, Adarsh Hsg Soc., 2G/3G scams, Antrix scam, *insert appropriate city name here* land scam, etc. There’s many more.

This post, however, is not about the past. It’s about looking forward. Like with any sector, there is tremendous competition in the scam industry as well. Politicians and their kin have unfortunately taken the lead here too, but the common man shouldn’t despair. It is the relative scale of a scam that determines its success. So go for the low-hanging fruit even if it’s smaller. Given the amount of money the country loses, I think there’s a case for having an industry body to ensure scams are indeed perpetrated correctly and that they follow previously set guidelines or best (worst?) practices. We need to get organized.

Some thoughts:

  1. A scam must be at least worth Rs 100 crore in size. If not, news channels and newspapers won’t think it worth their time and money unearthing it. Neither would the government. You’d end up going totally under the radar. What’s the point of a work of art if no one can see and enjoy it?
  2. A scam must affect minimum 20 families. Preferrably, these families must belong to the great Indian middle class and have proof that they have worked honestly and very hard for many years to collect their wealth. This is the wealth that must be the point of contention. Else, it’s just a plain robbery. No Robin Hood tactics allowed.
  3. A scam must involve at least one well-known politician, his family member(s) and an obscure central government neta. Without these, you will never get the scale you desire. It is fine if the central govt. chap has risen from obscurity and first hits the limelight only during the scam. Nothing prepares them better than a first-hand experience.
  4. A scam must be wide-reaching enough to compel the Opposition Party (at the Municipal Council, Gram Panchayat, State or Central Govt. level) to demand that the CBI or the ED get involved.

Of course, the above is a work in progress. I look at you — the populace of India that will be affected by one of these pretty soon — to add to it. We need to have some organisation and propreity about this. It can’t happen willy-nilly about it. I foresee a business model in consulting upcoming scamsters, creating syllabi for interested scamsters and also working on the other side — with law enforcement to identify perpetrators. If you would like to be a part of this movement, I invite your thoughts and need you to deposit Rs 1 million into my Swiss Bank account (number available on request). Remember, limited partnerships available. 

Additional inspiration reading: 

P.S.: I also welcome suggestions for new scams. Forms available upon payment of Rs 1000 into an Indian account. Receipt available post scam.

Suckers (aka you, waiting for the iPhone in India)

To all who have been patiently awaiting the launch of the iPhone in India. And also to all those who pre-registered their interest in an iPhone. Vodafone has officially let the cat out of the bag, as it were. There was much speculation about the pricing of the iPhone in India. Despite reports confirming the price, many refused to believe. But now they must.

Vodafone has sent this out today:

The above, if you ask me, the one with the discerning eye, points to the fact that the iPhone will cost Rs 30,000-plus. D-uh! I can’t understand why Apple would position this as a super premium product. Sure the subsidies offered in the US are not available to the Indian consumer but at 31k+, they have driven away the largest potential market of 18-24 for whom this is an uber cool gadget to have. Continue reading “Suckers (aka you, waiting for the iPhone in India)”

iPhone to be beyond most people’s reach

Contact me if you want to buy an unlocked iPhone for the prices announced are astronomical to say the least.

As my favourite humor writer (and now tech as it seems!) points out:

The 8 GB version of the iPhone 3G will cost Rs. 31,000, while the 16 GB version will cost between Rs. 36,000 and Rs. 37,000.

These prices are not inclusive of the plan these phones will come bundled with.

So there. Go cry. If you don’t want to cry, I am selling mine (seems silly, but it still costs about 25% less than the price of the new one) and you can make an offer!

Of course, the above is subject to the prices not being rumors (is the Apple PR machinery at work here?).

Anyways, there isn’t any point in buying the 3G phone at this price when you can’t even use the 3G.

While on the subject, I had recently listed a few things to write on and this is one of them. So may as well!

The reasons I am bored of my iPhone: Continue reading “iPhone to be beyond most people’s reach”