Iconic Ads: Hamara Bajaj – Bulund Bharat

The words – Hamara Bajaj took on a new, bigger meaning and Buland Bharat Ki Buland Tasveer aroused national consciousness among the masses and asked Indians to look ahead.

In 1989, the scooter led Bajaj was under threat. Motorcycle brands such as Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki attracted customers with campaigns that emphasize speed, style, mileage and superior technology.

With the television commercials, the Bajaj presented the audience with instances to take pride in Indian products.

The timing was correct. India was opening up, at the cusp of liberalization, and talking about a digital future.

It was also the time when Doordarshan was making us hum “Mile Sur Mera Tumhara”. In this scenario, Kersy Katrak at Lintas guided the Hamara Bajaj campaign. The crack creative team responsible were Rahul D’Cunha, Prashant Godbole, and lyrics beautifully written by Jaikrit Rawat. And sung by Vinay Mandke to the music of Louis Banks.

The Story

The story goes that Kersy called Rahul and Prashant. He told them that Bajaj had an imagery problem. Bajaj was the leader undoubtedly, but was perceived as strong, sturdy, reliable, but not sleek & old-fashioned. He wanted to bring an emotional angle to it.
Kersy wanted to take Bajaj from a form of transportation to a larger emotional form of Indianness.

Rahul cracked an English campaign and titled it ‘Great Indian Spirit’. Prashant and Kiran Khalap (a senior, was a part of the Lintas team) drew layouts that reflected what Rahul had written and shown typical Indian scenes around a Bajaj. And Jaikrit wove his magic of words to bring out a classic.

The Film

Sumantra Ghosal directed the film.

The half-minute ad featured Indians on their Bajaj scooters in a variety of situations – jogging, bargaining, meditating, learning to drive, cleaning the scooter, adjusting one’s look in the rear-view mirror and so on.

There was no mention of technology, mileage or speed, only people from different regions, social classes and ages with one thing in common – the Bajaj scooter. Slices of life from different parts of India.

Guess who presented the campaign – Rahul D’Cunha himself. The only person who could approve such a campaign had to be Mr Rahul Bajaj (others were not sure because this was an unconventional campaign). And the visionary that he is, he realized the huge potential the film had and approved it.

The words – Hamara Bajaj took on a new, bigger meaning and Buland Bharat Ki Buland Tasveer aroused national consciousness among the masses and asked Indians to look ahead.

And this positioned Bajaj as an inclusive family brand proud of Indianness.

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