Mall culture in India : Effects

mall-1I am not going to write it in every line but all points given below are screaming only one word – consumerism, consumerism, consumerism

1.All-in-one stores. With everything from groceries and vegetables to footwear, clothes, cosmetics, furnishings and electrical items available under one roof, a growing middle class with higher disposable incomes is heading for the malls in droves.

2.For some, it is a way to chill out on movies and food in the added comfort of a fully air-conditioned space. “In short, it is a living room for most of them.”

3.The malls are another sign of the new, prosperous India, of call centers, outsourcing and more disposable income, of fashionable young people who look as though they belong on MTV. Although much of rural India remains in deep poverty, many urban Indians are becoming richer. The country’s economy is forecast to grow up to 6.9 percent this year.

4.People can shop at stores selling U.S. brands. But they also can buy expensive pillows from Indian stores, statues of Hindu gods and fancy outfits. They can watch movies, eat Indian “street food” from the food court or have their pictures plastered on Coca-Cola cans at a promotional stand. At night they can dance and drink alcohol in the mall’s swanky nightclubs, also relatively new in India.

5.The anchors that first pull the crowds here – and at other malls all over the country – are as varied as they come. There are the US and European chains such as McDonald’s, Lacoste, Pizza Hut, Benetton, Subway, Marks & Spencer and Mango. Their success has spawned the emergence of successful Indian chains such as Pantaloon, Globus, Shoppers Stop, Giant, Lifestyle and Big Bazaar. Stores named after popular branded merchandise also act as effective anchors. These include the likes of Tommy Hilfiger, Swatch, Arrow, Louis Vuitton and Nike.

6.Foreign mall operators cannot enter India as foreign companies are not allowed to own real estate in India. Companies like Nike, McDonalds and Reebok sell at mall outlets through their Indian subsidiaries or franchisees. McDonalds, for example, has appointed two master franchisees in India, and these in turn have appointed numerous sub-franchisees all over the country. A sub-franchisee, therefore, could open a McDonalds outlet either as a stand-alone store or as one of the many stores in a mall.

7.On festivals, the malls can undoubtedly compete with a mela what with the carnival-like atmosphere and no elbow room for the visitors.

8.Delhi is often credited with being the most food-friendly city in the country. Thai, Italian, Chinese, Lebanese — you name it, they have it. Indian food too, is served here, but take your pick between south Indian or Mughlai cuisine. Come to think of it, that’s the problem. There is nothing more to Indian cuisine in the city save Mughlai food, the ubiquitious chola baturas, dal makhnis and sambar-dosas.Call it a s fallout of globalisation if you will, but the culture of serving diverse Indian cuisine, from various parts of the country, has died in Delhi. Not that it ever started. Where are the Kashmiri kahwas, mouth-watering thupkas and those authentic dal bati churmas?

9.Earlier, a large majority of Indians believed in the Spartan asceticism of the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. But the new generation of shoppers – like their contemporaries worldwide – believe in living for today and splurging at the mushrooming malls over the weekends. These consumers, many of whom have been exposed to shopping trends in the West, are also more aware and discerning.

10.The mushrooming of the Indian malls is being followed by a process of segmentation, each trying to project a particular environment, a specific image. In Mumbai, for instance, is Crossroads, the country’s first mall (opened in 1999), a chic, ultra-modern collective of international brands including Swarovski, Lactose, Tag Heur and Marks & Spencer and eat-outs such as Pizza Hut, Subway and McDonald’s. At the other extreme is R-Mall in suburban Mulund, proudly displaying homegrown retail labels such as Big Bazaar (household items), Hakoba (ladies’ wear), Planet M (music), Food Bazaar (groceries), Weekender Kids (children’s wear) and Pantaloon (men’s readymades).

11.According to a survey conducted by global property consultancy firm Cushman & Wakefield, not all mall operators are likely to benefit equally. “Only the ones in favorable locations and having the right format and suitable strategies are likely to remain long-term players,” informs the report. But Indian businessmen are known for their sheep mentality. A single success in any new field spawns many me-too imitators. However, as is evident from Indian business history, many private airlines, courier companies and granite exporters have bitten the dust.

12.”What took 20 years, 30 years, in any other country, here will take three or four years,” Taneja a builder in globus said.
Is it all in the name?
Malls sprout out of fields like a new cash crop, surrounded by nothing. Power and telephone lines have been strung over empty fields, where cows, sheep and pigs still roam. Towers of condominiums – another new concept in India – are springing up near the malls, advertising fulfilled dreams and luxury and a very well propagated agenda of “India Shining”.

Although some people wring their hands about what such change could mean to Indian culture, people at the malls say the country can adapt. A mall is just a new kind of market, they say.

“It’s all in the name,” said Chandra Mohan Thakur, an IIT alumni and employee of HLL ,“Once we called them tailors. Now we call them fashion designers. It’s the same thing.”

But as far as I can see it is not only name. Me, you and our surrounding can feel that nothing will be same anymore.

Solution – huh! Is mall is a problem. No. Just a different life style. Kneel before it or for better Go back to Humanism again.

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7 thoughts on “Mall culture in India : Effects

  1. yr articles topics n issues r fine jst want u too hight light the history of malls like when did first mall opened in india n bit more history

    Like

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