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An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... When nations steal growth from one another… Poor quality of university VCs Which side are you, Montek? Towards speedy justice When online building permits work…. Poor representation for Kerala and TN in Cabinet Convulsions in The Hindu SoA @ 80 Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt Plummeting profits of PSBs Tribute – UCAL Selvan… Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai Discoms deserve better… The why of tax incentives Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! TELANGANA at last…BUT Increasing non co-operation of state leaders Recognition to role of NBFCs.... Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals Computation of GDP – conundrums continue TN – agglomerate land holdings without alienating ownership Editor's Says Tribute Haul over the coal Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked Pharma – overdose of copying GNS - 100: our first subscriber Nuclear power at the nucleus Whistle-Stop Tour of Raghuram Rajan Tribute – M V Murugappan Remembering Indira Sivasailam... Strengthen the base... No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu An inexplicable neglect Preserving for the future Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik A welcome initiative by the judiciary A friendly business group Make standards certification mandatory... A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Airlines in India: cost and space Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health Welcome GST More heat than light Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! …and of a popular trade leader Solar, solar everywhere … When TN politicians can emulate Kerala's Banning booze... Streamlining mandatory third party cover Should we change the official year? Build close rapport with business leaders IPL - no surprise this scam A proud Madrasi CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities No engine for this car A think tank for Chennai Quality education through the PPP mode Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... When small is no larger beautiful.. Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad Why this malaise in medical education? More tributes to GR Tatas moving out of urea production... Don’t seem to feel the pulse… Secularism and anti-Hinduism The Gulf aviation boom Tough task taking states together B H Kothari - a tribute Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks Editor's Notes Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu He continues the focus on social amelioration Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... Of course, Gujarat is vibrant Small units prefers to remain small... He saved millions from starvation... Sweeter prospects for sugar Where is Rajaji? This scant respect for Law Fall in crude prices help in oil sector reform Modi storms Silicon Valley Where a state respects its litterateurs… Delhi is distant… Cement prices continue to rise… Tatas moving out of urea production... Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai The Swadeshi Trump Readers' Mail Making ‘my Amaravati’... Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? Silver Years of Madras Musings Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL Robber barons everywhere Russi Mody – a tribute West Bengal: mindless malignancy The rise and fall of Annamalai University China invests in India There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! How Air-India loses customs... TGS- The king storyteller Fortune for Indian Airlines Wise Presidents Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! EVM is tamper-proof Medical costs hit the roof... Cutting the nose to spite the face Delhi is distant All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya PC’s preference for professionals WTO Meet: resolved to meet again Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... Shanti and Sadhana through Music A yen for wastage… L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles Road development slows down L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… The power-full Hindujas Mersal magnified GM Technology at last! Kudos to NDTV... Sweet news for TN sugar mills Welcome focus on core competence Another Indian music maestro at the UN Rahman at CIC The few handicaps... CRS, a jewel among managers, is no more. Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... ONGC at KG Basin Godspeed, Chief Minister JJ Alexa – Talking Wikipedia Marketing expert Balagopal is no more Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami Telangana in top gear… S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital Shale gas and its shallow future Muffled voices for merit… CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... Roaring Ro-Ro facility IAS invades NDDB... A professional at the helm of IRDA... S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist More Shakthi to Das’ elbow A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu Delhi Chalo... Kulandai was a giant Contrarian cousins Wanted: a second airport for Chennai Demise of a media baron... Why land prices zoom in TN? Delhi returns to BJP No Maha Koottani in TN... Come elections, come advertisements... F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara Align crops to agro climate endowments… IPL type auction for VCs? The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ Mu Sigma – is no more A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science When the President was rendered homeless… Intellectual of rare qualities Music happens Adharma of opposition politics Kinetic Karnataka TIAM turns a full cycle Parliament in paralysis... More Shakti to resource mobilisation... Waning interest in public discussions… Polls and promises Paytm karo... Protest masters... Put expensive assets created to use... Things happen by accident and not by design... CII projects higher growth… Engineering seats go abegging Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel For whom the bell tolls? Fuel for thought The sea- saw battle continues... Sri Lanka votes for change Building loyalty through the stomach The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria Funding the un-funded Fortune 500 review The rise and rise of KCP An enemy’s enemy is a friend EEC at the National Media Centre Maximising the micro pricing … London, London Narayan Multi-faceted Venkat Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… Five star activism stalls development activity Lalu’s envy, India’s pride Return to king coal for urea... The balancing act TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector Gay abandon in pricing Noble nonagenarians... A rich pool of talent not utilised…. Boy, can you beat these? When Ratan Tata visited SRM Valli, they are more marginalised Quality silica from Neyveli Revving up the manufacturing sector The nuclear option The Jan Dhan bonanza The brown list of Venkitaramanan Vibrant Gujarat Excel Generators provide the vital back-up Breaththrough in malaria control Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra A glass full of corruption For whom the MIDS bell tolls? Measuring roof tops in terms of KW/MW Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS The star of Spencers is no more Gas is the way forward Modi and the lady Focus on quality of power - its only around 170-180V Moily’s bold thrust Auto components surge… A more liberated TN… Solar thermal shines… Revive development banks... Tax agriculture Shipping woes of Chennai companies
 
Tribute – UCAL Selvan…

The demise of C V Karthik Narayanan (CVK) marked a loss of a multifaceted business leader. CVK, a grandson of Dr C P Ramaswamy Iyer, took charge of Standard Motor Products of India Ltd from his father-in-law K V Srinivasan. 

Founded by K Gopalakrishna (KG) Standard Motors, part of the Union Motors group, was an iconic brand for a couple of decades. KG set up the facility in collaboration with the British Standard-Triumph International after distributing the cars imported earlier. SMPI initially assembled the cars out of CKD and SKD packs. The brands Vanguard, Standard 10, Companion, Herald… with sturdy and efficient engines, commanded a modest clientele (I started my auto journey with a Standard Herald in 1969 then priced Rs 18,000; it performed so well and was low on maintenance). 

CVK focused on the light commercial vehicle Standard 20, priced low and offered decent performance. In the era of licences and controls, it was popular and profitable for the company even producing at low volumes of a few hundred. 

In the late 1980s, with great optimism, CVK introduced the Standard 2000 sedan as a luxury car. Launching it, then President R Venkataraman hailed it as ‘a beauty and an engineering marvel.’ 

To manufacture these CVK imported the machine tools and the entire equipment from Britain after the British company discontinued production of this model, at a modest price (of around Rs 85 lakh). However, powering it with the old Vanguard engine was not effective and resulted in low mileage. Big Brother Hindustan Motors’ C K Birla found it a competitor to his equally gas guzzling Contessa and succeeded in pushing out the Standard 2000. SMPI turned sick and CVK focused on UCAL Auto Private Ltd, UCAL Products Pvt Ltd and UCAL Travels. With land prices soaring, the large land mass acquired by KG was a boon. 

CVK will also be remembered for his monumental work in translating the popular Tamil writer Kalki’s historic novel Ponniyin Selvan into English. 

CVK’s daughter Gayathri Sriram is the Senior Vice President, Madras Chamber of Commerce and Industries. 



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