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