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Improve quality for credibility, Modi tells India Inc

Bangalore, Nov 18 (IANS) Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi Thursday told India Inc that quality was critical for gaining and retaining credibility in an age when products and services were driven by advertising and marketing.

‘Credibility is a byproduct of quality. Unless you have quality in your product or service, you will have no credibility. No amount of advertising and marketing will help you unless you maintain quality,’ Modi told about 1,600 delegates at the 18th national quality summit of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) here.

Lamenting that Indian companies spend more on advertising and marketing than on processes, quality and research and development (R&D), Modi said healthy competition should be based on quality, which comes out of continuous improvement in product or service.

‘In an advertising-driven society, companies compete to survive by investing more in marketing strategies than improving quality and coming out with newer products,’ Modi said, delivering a keynote address at a special plenary session on the first day of the three-day event.

In this context, Modi rued the failure of Indian traditional ayurvedic medicine to allopathic and other forms of medicines in providing holistic healthcare due to gross neglect of its packaging and marketing.

‘Though ayurvedic medicine is the best holistic healthcare without side-effects, it lost market share in the country (India) of its origin because its packaging system was outdated and did not keep pace with modernisation for delivering in a way convenient to patients,’ Modi recalled, citing from the Jaisukhlal Hathi committee report (1975).

Addressing a rapt audience in chaste Hindi, Modi told India Inc to get rid of complacency and casualness (‘chalega or chalta hai’) in work culture by benchmarking themselves with the world’s best work practices.

‘We should not compare with what we were yesterday with what we are today but with the world’s best companies or products and services. We should not compromise on anything, be it quality, credibility, efficiency and productivity,’ he asserted.

Advising captains of industry to read the biographical account of Benjamin Franklin, one of the founding fathers of the US, Modi said qualitative improvement in one’s life was a precursor to bringing about a radical change in quality of work or in time management.

‘Like charity, quality begins with one self as demonstrated by Franklin throughout his life. In the present day, we can also use technology as a means to improve our delivery mechanism, enhance efficiency, increase productivity and eliminate wasteful expenditure,’ he pointed out.

Noting that quality was as paramount in governance as in products and services, Modi said that Gujarat became a model state in the country because of the drastic changes he brought about in the administration using technology and motivating officials to serve the people efficiently.

‘I organised 350 congregations across the state to distribute funds (Rs.4,700 crore) budgeted for various schemes to the 3.5 million intended beneficiaries and ensured not a rupee was siphoned off in the process,’ he claimed.

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