Baburajan K’s blog for Infotech Lead Asia: India is known for low grade politics by several political parties. But the latest political controversies — involving UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav — have dragged HP laptop as well.
The Indian IT industry did not expect low grade controversies from Akhilesh Yadav, who has studied at Sydney University, before becoming the youngest chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, India’s largest state by population.
When Uttar Pradesh’s ex-chief minister Mayavati tried to put up her statues and 100s of statues of elephants, symbol of her Bahujan Samaj Party, across UP and Delhi-NCR region, the IT industry did not receive this much shock.
Why did the beneficiaries of HP laptops — distributed freely to schools children two days ago — hate this education tool. These school kids, tomorrow’s future in UP (even in Delhi’s political corridors), are forced to see the picture of both Akhilesh and his father Mulayam Singh Yadav when they open the laptop.
I suggest UP political leadership and bureaucrats, who created the tagline “Purey hote vadey” (Promises fulfilled) and set the wallpaper, to revise their marketing strategies. At the same time, I appreciate the laptop program. This will encourage telecom operators to invest in broadband.
The PR campaign does not stop at laptop level. Even the laptop bags have the images of Yadav and his father.
With this blog, I am not trying to say that HP is the culprit behind this. But HP is supplying 10,000 free laptops meant for Class 12 passouts in Lucknow as part of the UP government’s plan to distribute 15 lakh computers. HP India won this order for Rs 2,858 crore.
Media reports suggest that it is not so easy to change the wallpaper of the laptops UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav distributed. The wallpaper, if changed, may lead to crashing of the entire system. The wallpaper happened to be in-built and tamper-proof.
When some local HP vendors tried to change the wallpaper, the operating system, Linux, got wiped out and the system crashed.
Officials in the UP Electronic Corporation, the agency that distributed the laptops, advised users not to tamper with the wallpaper. The HP machine comes with a year warranty and in case of any snags beneficiaries may contact the office of MD UPECL.
These laptops are aimed at improving education level in the UP and even across the country. Let UP politicians and bureaucrats learn first about marketing. Akhilesh, the young chief minister of UP, does not need a wallpaper to show his picture. The CM is already popular and he can be a role model for the entire country, if he does well.