Monday, December 1, 2014


Chiguru is Mahindra's way of bringing people who have two things in common; cars and kids! Chiguru means 'bud' in Kannada. But for the folks with a little more imagination, it could just be a play of words (chikka - meaning small) and guru. Mahindra & Mahindra conducted their second event in Bangalore for customer kids, on Saturday, 22nd November, 2013. This was an excellent platform for kids under 13 to display their talents, and get recognized. Sources said that almost 200 customers (who qualified) were invited from Bangalore. The event was to start at 3, but since customers came like they were bringing their cars for service, the event actually started well after 4! The location of the event was the Kamala Bai School, which is a surprising large campus tucked away just off Queen's Road. There were several new (unregistered) Mahindra cars in the grounds (including the all new Scorpio). Rumor has it that the property belongs to one of the M&M agencies in Bangalore.

Waiting for the kids as they arrived, were artists who created caricatures, and drew tattoos and mehendi for those who could sit still! For those who couldn't (sit still), they tried their best :)

Joanne's reaction at her caricature - Does it even look like me??
The kids were welcomed at the entrance with chips packets and tetra pack juice. The organizers seemed to have left no stone unturned in their efforts to make this a memorable and enjoyable evening. The auditorium was of the right size. The sound system could make your heart beat to its rhythm. The stage was designed for a star performance and the professional lighting seemed to be every dancer's dream come true.
And the icing on the cake? Definitely the pretty judges :)

Since we were still waiting for the crowd to come in and form a quorum, (though 3 PM to 8 PM may be too large a window for some folks) the MC started the event with getting to know the participating kids. The first game was about doing exactly the opposite of what she said. So if she said sit, they had to remain standing and so on. Now you'd think that this was the perfect game to find out who's best at not listening. And you'd probably expect all kids to be really good at this. But as luck would have it, even that doesn't happen when you really want it to happen.

And the last lady standing for not following instructions.

Since the MC wasn't very successful in keeping a bunch of kids engaged, it was time for some magic. Literally. While some of the kids were awestruck at the mention of the word 'magic' there were other kids (and parents) who were trying (successfully!) to figure the secret behind each trick. With so many magic shows, it's difficult to keep kids of this generation occupied. Even then, these kids were buzzing around the magician like bees. He was actually finding it difficult to choose who would volunteer, while at the same time trying to hide all the secrets behind his tricks!

Soon it was time to register for the painting/drawing competition. Kids were given 30 minutes to get creative. All the kids were given a kit with crayons, paint and brushes. And did we have some artists. MF Hussain would have felt a little insecure at some of the 30-minute-creations.

And when the prizes were announced (later that evening), it was a 7 year old who walked away with the first prize. Not for the drawing, but more so probably for the message. It was a simple picture of three trees that were at some stage of being cut down. And one tree was on the ground, with just a stump still in the ground. The message said Save Trees - for a better future. Complete with correct spelling! And her dad gets to blog about it. Here :)

After the exhausting session of drawing and painting, it was time for a break. M&M had some yummy surprises in everyone's food packages. It had all the stuff that kids usually enjoy. From pastries, sandwiches, sweets, there was something in there for everyone.

After a quick snack, the kids were all waiting for their 3 minutes in the limelight. Of course some of them gouged on both the lime and the light. If it was MF Hussain who felt bad during the previous event, it was time for the Prabhu Devas and Michael Jackson to get embarrassed with the impressive performances by the kids. The kids really gave the judges a tough time making a decision. In this case, it was not one, but they had to make some 3 choices in each category. Not just the judges, but even the MC had a tough time keeping up with the kids. Some of them also managed to get the MC all tongue tied with their cheeky responses! Finally, when we were nearing closing time, the organizers had to ration time among the remaining participants. There were a few kids who didn't seem very pleased with the abrupt stoppage of their events. But that's what happens when someone doesn't take a hint!
And here is a clip of Joanne's song. You can really see why such events are a challenge. I'm surprised she continued singing after the first 'interruption'.

There was also a customer sharing experience that was squeezed in. Two customers shared their experiences with M&M. One of them has been driving Mahindra cars for over a decade. Both had only good things to say. Mr Bose, Mahindra's regional head for South India also shared a few words about encouraging children and creating opportunities. But everyone were still remembering the antics of his three year old (who was also participating). This kid had just caused a stir on the stage. He liked the wireless mike so much that he refused to give it back and the organizers were seen chasing him around to make sure they had the 'last word'. If anyone was feeling bored till then, this incident was what they needed for a good laugh.

M&M were generous with the prizes. Large trophies along with Rs. 3000 in gift coupons for first prize winners.

Mahindra did try and make a lot of kids happy by ensuring that there were as many winners as was possible. If they didn't win a prize, they had already won a great experience (not to mention the reliable cars) and a few awesome friends in the process!

All the winners with staff from M&M and their ASC (Authorized Service Centers)

I'd like to end with the often repeated, but seldom practiced rule. Wear your seat belts. If by some misfortune, you do get into a crash, all those airbags won't be able to protect you. Humpty dumpty would have had more hope.
Many people don't know that if seat belts are not worn, there is an interlock in the system that actually prevents the airbags from deploying. Because if they deployed, and you were not wearing seat-belts, the force of the airbags opening up in your face could kill you. If you weren't already dead for not wearing your seat-belt that is. Drive safe and remember -

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