Friday, November 22, 2013

From Master Blaster to Master Laster: Eminent Journalist Sumit Chakraberty Shares Some Inconvenient Truths About Sachin Tendulkar

In a cricket-crazy country where the game enjoys the status of a religion and players are hero-worshipped, Sumit Chakraberty, author of Master Laster: What They Don't Tell You About Sachin Tendulkar, dares to tell some inconvenient truths about the God of Cricket - Sachin Tendulkar. Sumit is an eminent journalist, who has extensively covered topics like cricket, food, travel and books for the last 30 years. During his long career, he has been associated with media moguls like DNA, UTV, The Times of India, and Indian Express as analyst, writer, editor and mentor. In his book, Sumit neutrally examines Sachin's approach towards this Gentleman's game and how the Master Blaster became a Master Laster. In a freewheeling chat exclusively with Infibeam, Sumit speaks about the title of the book, what kind of criticism he received from Sachin's fans and gives his unbiased views on a phenomenon called Sachin Tendulkar.

Que: Why Master Laster and not Master Blaster in the book title?

Mr. Sumit Chakraberty: Sachin Tendulkar started his career with a blast. His centuries at Sydney and Perth, in particular, not only came on foreign pitches but were made at a fast clip against a good bowling attack.

We should have won the Sydney Test, but Ravi Shastri's double century took too long, and Australia escaped with only two wickets standing. After the nineties, Tendulkar's strike rate fell. Ironically, in December 2003, it was Tendulkar's conservative approach while making a double century at Sydney that was partly responsible for Australia escaping with a draw, this time with four wickets standing. In that sense, the Master Blaster had become a Master Laster. He was now more interested in spending time in the middle and reaching his milestones, than scoring quick runs even when the team needed him to hit out. That’s why Rahul Dravid was right to declare the Indian innings at Multan when Tendulkar was on 194 not out. His ODI career has followed a similar trend. In the nineties, he earned the moniker of Master Blaster after becoming an opener and smashing a number of centuries in India and Sharjah. India used to win over 80 per cent of the time when Tendulkar scored a century those days. But after the nineties, when his strike rate dropped in ODIs too, India was as likely to lose as win if Tendulkar made a century. The win percentage of his last 25 ODI centuries was around 50% compared to 80% for the first 24. And finally, in the last three years of his career, the runs dried up too, not just the strike rate, but he continued playing. Tendulkar’s batting average in his last 14 Tests over a period of two years was below 25. No other player could have lasted in the team with returns like that in series after series. Hence the title of Master Laster: What They Don’t Tell You About Sachin Tendulkar. No other book on Tendulkar has dwelt on these inconvenient truths.

Que: What kind of criticism have you received from Sachin's fans across the globe?

Mr. Chakraberty: Quite a lot of it is emotional and skeptical, of course, because Sachin Tendulkar is their hero. But many have come up with intelligent criticism of my interpretation of the data, and I enjoy such exchanges because they give me food for thought and also a chance to clarify my position. One oft-repeated question is whether Tendulkar can be blamed for not being more of a match-winner and compared to the likes of Ricky Ponting of Australia who played in a team with stronger bowlers. In my book, actually, I have mostly compared Tendulkar with his own team-mates. In some crucial areas, like batting under pressure in the second innings to win Tests outside Asia, for instance, which is the ultimate test for an Indian batsman, both Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman have done much better than Tendulkar. It is not as though Tendulkar did not contribute to such victories, but always in the first innings. That is not something any book on him has tried to analyse. I should also mention here that many people have also welcomed one revisionist book on Tendulkar among the many gushing ones. We have a democratic tradition, and people enjoy debate and argument by and large, I believe.

Que: How would you react if people consider you an iconoclast or image-breaker after reading this book?

Mr. Chakraberty: If Copernicus had not questioned a widely held belief, we might still have been under the impression that the Earth is at the centre of the universe. I am no Copernicus, of course, just a devotee of cricket who believes that conventional stats do no justice to the evaluation of a player’s contributions to team goals, which is after all the point of the game, not reaching individual milestones. Besides, elevating one player to demigod status devalues the contributions many others have made in a selfless and self-effacing manner. Rahul Dravid had a batting average of over 50 in his last 20 Tests, roughly the same as his career average, but he quit after one bad series to make way for Cheteshwar Pujara, who is now our top Test batsman. In the last seven months of his Test career, Dravid made five centuries, four of which were outside Asia. A revisionist assessment would indisputably put Dravid, not Tendulkar, at the pinnacle of Indian Test cricket in this millennium.

Que: Javed Miandad said that Sachin would fade from public memory once he retires. Your comment on this.

Mr. Chakraberty: Sachin was a prodigious talent and I will be among millions who will never forget the joy this cherubic, curly-haired batsman gave with his compact, punchy batting style. The book does not dispute his talent and popularity. It disputes the undue weightage given to individual milestones in a team sport, and lack of focus on a player’s impact on team results. This is strictly a cricket book, but it is meant for both pundits and those with a fleeting interest in the game. The idea is to look beyond the inane records commentators keep putting before us, thereby enriching how we see and enjoy cricket.

Que: Last question. Imagine you are with Sachin Tendulkar on a deserted island. What could be the scene like?

Mr. Chakraberty: We would be talking cricket, I'm sure.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Three Lucky Winners From Infibeam Met Kareena Kapoor and Imran Khan in Delhi

They say it takes lot of patience, hard work and luck to meet famous people, but Infibeam defies this notion since the company provides great many chances to its customers to win super prizes and meet celebrities. had recently organized an event on Gori Tere Pyaar Mein Audio CDs. Under this offer, three of the customers of Infibeam got to meet the star cast Kareena Kapoor Khan and Imran Khan in person at +Hotel Le-Meridien Near New Delhi on 12th November, 2013. 

The lucky winners were Juhi Chaturvedi, Rashmi Parijat Bhatt and Pankaj Dixit all them not only met both the lead stars of the movie Gori Tere Pyar Mein [AUDIO-CD] but they also got an autograph on their Audio CDs of the movie purchased from Infibeam. The lucky winners were chosen in a lucky draw held by the company that had the names of all the customers who had brought the Audio CD of the movie., has gained much popularity on account of such exclusive opportunities that it provides to its customers. Plenty of quiz and contests are organized by the company on their Facebook page and the winners take home not only great prices but such priceless moments like meeting great and famous personalities.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Discussion with Dr. Somesh Gupta via Google Hangout on Importance of Sexual Health

Infibeam recently arranged for a discussion on STI with Dr. Somesh Gupta through Google Hangout. Sexual Health is a known field that was introduced by WHO long time back. But not much has been done on taking care about the issues related to physical relations. Sexual Health is a state of physical, emotional, mental and social well being. During the discussion Dr. Somesh had received a few queries from Priya during the discussion such as:

How effective are condoms in preventing STI and HIVs?

Condoms play a major role in preventing such diseases and its effect has been seen in South East Asian countries. Though Indian do not use a lot of these they can prefer the safer way of physical relation to prevent any such diseases. Physical relation is an important part of everyones life. Dr. Somesh also put light on that a man can have a multiple sex partners in comparison to women. Thus the chance of STI increases here. 

What are the common sexually transmitted infection and are they still a significant public health problem?

These problems are hidden as they are related to sex and they are not seen immediately as the infection moves internally and gets increased with pace of time. There are many problems that occur and a screening needs to done on regular basis to detect such diseases. Some may have skin related problems, some may have internal problems, etc. If this issue is not taken care of then there could be serious problems in your late on life. It is important to understand that this needs to controlled and taken care of. There were many such questions that were answered during the question. Priya asked all the questions viewers had put forward who were viewing the discussion. Incase you missed on it you can see the discussion again Google Hangout through this link

Would also like to tell you that Dr. Somesh Gupta is the Regional Director of Asia Pacific Region of International Union against STI. He is also the Editor of Elsevier Journal for STI. He is an Honory Treasurer Elect of Indian Association of Dermatologist, Venereologist and Leprologist. He is an assistant professor at Department of Dermatology and Venereology at AIIMS (All India Institute of Medical Sciences). As a global leader in science and health information and tools, Elsevier serves more than 30 million scientists, students, and health and information professionals around the world with over 1,800 journals, 2,200 new books each year, software and databases, pharma communications.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Infibeam Makes The Contest Winner Meet The Legendary Mr. Bachchan

Recently Infibeam had launched a contest on their FB page on the book The Dream Chasers. Many people participated, many gave a few correct answers, but as said all cannot have the same luck at the same time. This is what happened this time. After the contest was over a lucky winner who gave all the answers correct and was picked in the lucky draw was none other than Anurag Pagaria from Mumbai.

The Dream Chasers written by Vipul Mitra an IAS got this book launched by Shri Amitabh Bachchan on 26th September 2013. It not easy to meet the Legendary Amitabh Bachchan face to face, have a hand shake and a small talk with him. People stand in queues, wait for years to meet him, but through Infibeam Anurag Pagaria was able to make the impossible possible. He was invited to come to Hotel Sea Princess in The Crystal Room in Mumbai where he got the golden opportunity to meet Amitabh Bachchan.

So you never know when you would be lucky to meet someone special through Infibeam. So be active on Facebook and know when a new contest is up so that you can also be among the lucky winners. Opportunities never knock your door before they come, you need to be alert to be able to grab it and make the most of it.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Understand Relationships On A Different Level With Disha Chhabra

Disha Chhabra's novel "My Beloved’s MBA Plans" is a perfect concoction of love and ambitions. The book is a well thought idea and definitely put in an extremely gripping way.
My Beloved's MBA Plans is about couples who sacrificed, adjusted, longed for their partners so that they can fulfill their dreams of doing MBA from a prestigious institute. As the author herself is a student of IIM Calcutta, she has interviewed real life couples, people at the institute and shared their inspiring stories. A tete-e-tete with an amazing debut author Disha, who will take you on a roller-coaster ride to relationships and ambitions through her book My Beloved's MBA Plans: Crossroads of Love and Ambitions.

Ques- How do you compare your book under debut Authors Race?
Disha Chhabra- Agreed that there are too many books coming out these days; but each book has its own USP. My work stands apart from a lot of other debut authors' books because it is a collection of real life stories - real people like you and me.

Very often, I have found that the characters in novels/books are mostly fictitious, not even close to reality. Whereas, in my book, you will come across people who have actually faced the challenges of life and have gone through practical dilemmas that we all can relate to. It's all about taking the road less traveled with the support of loved ones. There are no filmy plots, just simple facts of life brought alive in my characters. The book has so many varieties of stories to offer. The best part is that these 16 stories are weaved in in such a manner that there is something in store for everyone and anyone who wishes to read, enjoy and get inspired.

Ques- What motivated you to write the book?
Miss. Disha- The idea to write a book struck me when I was pursuing my MBA, though it took me almost two years to take the decision to actually pen it down. In those days, I was single, had no financial obligations and life was wonderful. Throughout my career at IIM, I came across many people who had come there to fulfill their career ambitions, sacrificing a lot on the personal and professional fronts. I was humbled.

A couple who had just got married, a girl who had just got divorced, a couple who lived separately in two countries, dilemmas of a career woman and her maternal responsibilities -- each of these stories were unique and special in their own ways.

I realized that these stories have the power to inspire many others who would follow their heart's calling and not defer important decisions in their lives just because the usual societal conventions demanded that. That's when I knew that these are stories to be told, read and followed. That's when "My Beloved's MBA Plans" was conceptualized.

Ques- What do you intend to express through this book?
Miss. Disha- First and foremost, I wish to convey that when it comes to taking a decision, just take it. Don't bother too much about the 'ifs and buts', else it would never happen.

Secondly, the love and trust of one's parents, spouse and kids is the most important criterion for one's true success. And lastly, life is all about the choices one makes. Dream big and make the right choices.

Ques- What was the time frame for writing this book?
Miss. Disha- Well, you will be surprised if I tell you that the book was written over a time frame of just four months; despite a hectic study schedule. When some of my friends on campus would be busy completing assignments and others busy partying, I would lock myself in my hostel room, make myself a cup of tea and write. Sometimes even during the classes, I would be thinking of the book. It was something I was really passionate about.

Ques- Who all your target audience?
Miss. Disha- On first thought, the title suggests that the book may have a niche audience; i.e. people who wish to pursue their higher studies.

But NO! The book is all about unconventional decisions in life. There is no age, no demography for one to think unconventionally and make bold choices. The book has a mass appeal for anyone who dares to dream and is looking at a source of inspiration. Right from college going students to my friends' mom-in-laws, everyone has read the book and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Ques- Share your most interesting experiences while writing the novel
Miss. Disha- It has to be the first story where it all began. It was half past ten when the thought of writing the book first come to my mind. Excited, I called up the first couple and told them I was coming to interview them right away. They were confused and surprised. But when they started narrating their story, I felt as if their story would be enough for me to write whole book. Well, they had so much to share. I interviewed them at midnight, came back to my room, missed my morning classes and compiled their story. It was so much fun.

From then on, each story I wrote, I kept feeling the same. These couples continued to surprise me through their bold and interesting anecdotes. And when I interviewed Vidhi, the girl who completed her MBA while she was carrying (a baby); I literally bowed to her. Hats off to her adventurous instinct, I would say!

Ques- The last book you read that you loved.
Miss. Disha- It has to be "The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari". A book that I have read multiple times and each time it has got me thinking, left me inspired and has given me very valuable lessons. A must have in everyone's library.

Ques- What is your favourite genre. What inspired you to write this ?
Miss. Disha- I love reading non-fictional stuff, books on real people, biographies and autobiographies. As I said earlier, I don't like to read books where the characters appear to have come out of a Bollywood movie or a fictitious character, with no connection to practical and ground realities. To a large extent, when the thought of becoming a writer first came in my mind, I knew it had to be stories of ordinary people and their extra-ordinary journeys.

Ques- What's your next venture?
Miss. Disha- I am not a planner. I just like to flow where the winds of life takes me. At the moment, I am working on my next book which is on a socially relevant concept. If all goes well, hope to see it out in the market sometime next year.

Ques- Where can your readers stalk you?
Miss. Disha- My readers can become a part of my journey on the book's FB Page, following me on twitter through @DreamerDisha and connect with me on my blog( ). I would be more than happy to hear from the readers anytime, anywhere.

Ques- Have you experienced
Miss. Disha- Infibeam has been a great partner. Right from day one, Infibeam's delivery commitments and support to a newfound author are unmatched by anyone else in the industry. I strongly recommend Infibeam to all my readers.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Opening Assets to Audiences is the Future,’ Mr. Vishal Mehta at BOS

Buildabazaar, A Mall in the Cloud: Brand Owner’s Summit - Infibeam founder and CEO Mr Vishal Mehta, one of the speakers at the two-day Brand Owner's Summit, shared his views and experience on what makes Infibeam and BuildaBazaar a hit among today’s online surfers, businesses and customers. The summit was a unique opportunity to observe, interact with, learn and seek directions from some of the most respected brand owners on a single platform.

It was all about ‘Branding Truth’ at the Brand Owner’s Summit, a multi-city event held on February 8-9 at Core-AMA Management House in Ahmedabad.

It was an ideal platform to spread the mantras of branding and exchanging of ideas, values and branding truths from the vast experiences and knowledge of the brand owners, experts and custodianswho have successfully added value to their respective ideas and business ventures through branding.

Day one saw panel talks from speakers like Anghshu Mallick of Adani Wilmar; Piruz Khambhatta of Rasna, Mr. Vishal Mehta of Infibeam, Mr Tushar Vyas from Group Mand Mr. Darshan Patel of Vini Cosmetics and more.

The topic of the days was “Building brands in digital world” - learning from the gurus who harnessed the power of branding to enhance the values of their ideas and created powerful brands that have stood the test of time.

Sharing his views on “Building Brands in Digital World” and interacting with the audience, Mr Mehta, CEO & founder, Infibeam, said, “The online world today is content driven and the amount of content used to promote a brand is immense. This was not the case 30 years ago, back then, people were seen talking about ‘Reach’ when the only way to measure the success of any business was to know ‘what’s your reach’. Cut to present, people do not have time. So how can you essentially make yourself visible to them or make them notice you and your brand and how to reach out to them? These were a few challenges in front of us when we started off five years ago. We realized that engaging your audiences is essential to connect to them. For me engaging with the customers is more important than content.”

Talking about what medium he prefers to connect - content or visuals, Mr. Mehta explained, “Content is crucial but visuals communication is more appealing. Creatives play a massive role in building up a brand. What is the first thing that comes to your mind when in say, for example, Parle biscuit? That girl holding a biscuit, right?! In this crowded and fast world, a visual stands more relevance than any content. Creative matters, they stay on people’s mind forever. Moreover, it’s easy to remember a picture then content. This comes natural to us humans. While experimenting, we decided to simply increase the size of our products on Infibeam. Surprisingly, we observed 20% rise in the number of visitors on the site.”

Day two witnessed the new age brand gurus sharing their experiences of how consistent efforts in branding spurred their ideas to create new brands. This section saw Mr. Mehta sharing his journey of building up such a strong venture like BuildaBazaar, a DIY ecommerce platform which caters to more than 18000 online businesses today. In such a short span of time.

“To be an entrepreneur was a lifestyle choice for me. I have always believed in the words of Steve jobs who once said: ‘People with lot of passion can only change the world’. If you do not have passion for something, you fall out! These five years has been a roller-coaster ride for us but worth spending every second. Coming back to the brand, I believe that by opening the assets to your audiences is the future of ecommerce. The success funda is very simple, if consumer and facilitator speak the same language, or are on the same page, the success is bound to happen to you.”

Inviting the audiences to try opening their own stores on, Mr. Mehta said, “At BuildaBazaar, we allowing our customers to use and experiment with its facilities, in turn the customers open up as well. It’s like the philosophy ‘the more you give, the more you get’. BuildaBazaar is like a mall in the ecommerce cloud where you can create your own online shopping store under your own URL within minutes. You do not necessarily have to be a software engineer to use this platform. The vision is to empower small and medium businesses, entrepreneurs and individuals to give their business a much needed online presence.

The Ahmedabad leg of the event was attended by established owners, upcoming businesses, CEOs, CMOs, marketing and advertising professionals, product managers, branding and planning experts, key stakeholders from the government, investors and entrepreneurs.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Infibeam to Revolutionize The Way We Read @ World Book Fair

All you hard core readers out there get ready for an up gradation… It's time to get eBook!!!

Digital publishing is getting hotter by the day and there is nothing like having an access to a huge collection of all the favorite books at once. Welcome to the application world of eBooks as Infibeam will guide you through the journey at the World Book Fair which has been organized between 4 and 10 February. This year, our focus would be to educate and upgrade readers on eBook. You can find us at Hall No - 2, 3, 4, and 5 and Stall No - 140 to 144 at the Pragati Maidan.

According to industry reports, eBook sales continue to rise rapidly and the trend is only going to continue, with books and other publications quickly moving to the iPad and tablets.

On 6th February, Infibeam is hosting a seminar on eBooks as well as on BuildaBazaar, our do-it-yourself e- commerce platform where you can create your own online shopping store under your own URL within minutes, from 2.30 pm to 4.30 pm.  We will also be creating online store for publishers to help them reach out to their clients.

Get ready to be inspired!

About New Delhi World Book Fair 2013
This year the World Book Fair will celebrate the theme "Indigenous Voices: Mapping India's Folk and Tribal Literature", where the multifarious expressions of Indian's traditional native cultures including exhibit of books, traditional art forms, crafts, panel discussions and performances will be showcased. France is a Guest of Honor Country at the fair this year.

MM Pallam Raju, Union Minister for Human Resource Development, will inaugurate the fair, while Karan Singh, eminent author, former minister and president of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations will be the guest of honor.

The Fair is organized annually by National Book Trust, India, an apex body of the Government of India, Ministry of Human Resource Development. It is co-organized by India Trade Promotion Organization (ITPO), the nodal agency of the Government of India, Ministry of Commerce for promoting the country's external trade.

This year, the fair will also set up an author's corner in different halls where a number of celebrity writers and literary personalities will interact with the public. Around 50 to 60 books will be released at the fair.