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18 January, 2009

Call for Cellular Silence on Gandhiji's death anniversary

Immensely disturbed by the endorsement of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as a future Prime Minister by leading industrialists Ratan Tata, Sunil Mittal and Anil Ambani, Ranjan Kamath ( has called for observance of Mahatma Gandhi’s 61st death anniversary as Cellular Silence Day, hoping it will arouse the conscience of corporate India.

Kamath has opened a Petition on Line to make it known to the corporate bosses that the Indian citizen is not to be trifled with. Just as we can vote for or against the politician, we can pinch the corporate bottom-line in order to engage their attention to mend their ways, he says.

It is not an easy task for us to keep our cell phones and Blackberries switched off for an entire day on January 30th. However, he believes, it ought to be sufficient to get the message across to corporate India that we will not tolerate the endorsement of fascists as future Prime Ministers.

He requests you to visit the link below to sign and thereafter circulate the petition below, if you feel as strongly about this matter

The petition title is: Cellular Silence Day_30th January 2009.
The petition URL is:
The petition is directed to: India Inc.
The start date is: January 15, 2009
The end date is: January 30, 2009

The petition says:

Dear Messrs, Ratan Tata, Sunil Mittal and Anil Ambani,

I am one of a billion Indian citizens.

I am somewhere in the middle of that pyramid that you wish to give voice - from bottom to top - through wealth creation.

I am proud of the brands you represent that have made India proud.

I am one of the burgeoning Indian middle-class that shares your aspirations of mutating India from indolent elephant to thundering tiger.

It ends there...

I have hitherto been accused of being indifferent and apathetic, simply because I am overawed and felt overwhelmed in a system replete with Goliaths.

But when I saw you embrace the fascist mastermind of state-sponsored genocide as a future Prime Minister and endorse the Modi-fication of India, it was disappointingly apparent that the brands that aspire to make India rich shall continue to languish in ethical poverty.

While I am filled with revulsion at your endorsement of Narendra Modi, I must respect your right to do so as a fellow citizen.

In writing this petition I am a mere David amongst the mightiest corporate Goliaths but I feel empowered to address your collective amnesia - through recollection of the Gujarat pogrom of 2002 - by the true Goliath among Gujaratis in particular and Indians in general -- Mohandas Gandhi.

All those who sign this petition will switch off their Tata Indicom, Airtel and Reliance cellular phone and broadband connections from midnight on January 30th 2009.

It is eminently possible that I might be the one voice in a billion who will observe the 61st death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi on as Cellular Silence Day.

Then again, there might be close to a billion who could join me on January 30th, 2009 expressing their solidarity and silently insisting that the captains of India Inc adopt an ethical, compassionate path to wealth creation rather than the single-minded pursuit of the bottom-line.

We shall know that by the end of 30th January, 2009.

Ranjan Kamath’s message has been circulated by Ram Puniyani


St Aloysius High School Class of 1974 said...

Spread the word!

Anonymous said...

I certainly know that Mr Tata has not made any commented to make
Narendra Modi PM of the country. It was Anil Ambani & Sunil Mittal who said that. Incidentally Mr.Tata only praised his efficiency and his
leadership qualities that he had shown in managing growth for the
state of Guajarat. Nothing more should be read into his statement. It
is unfortunate that to make your case stronger you are unnecessary
putting name of Mr Tata with other industrialist.