Saturday, October 30, 2010

A mountain out of an Antilia

I have this intense desire to clobber anyone who has a problem with Antilia! Mukeshbhai has the money and like all people who have THE money and along with it the right to show off, he does too. It does not matter whether the building was designed by a bunch of designers using playdoh and lego bricks. Mukeshbhai likes it and that is all that matters.

I like what Salit Tripathi says in his Hubris of Height column in Mint - and I quote him with great relish :

"how Ambani should spend his money is entirely his business. Unlike Mayawati’s zeal to build statues and memorials at taxpayers’ expense, Ambani is at least financing his edifice complex from his own wealth. True, that money could have been put to other uses. Like Bill Gates, Ambani could have donated a large chunk of his wealth to fight an utterly treatable disease in India, such as cholera or diarrhoea, both less glamorous than the ones that captivate aid agencies. Or like Warren Buffett, he could have continued to earn his billions while passing his wealth to the Gates Foundation. Like George Soros, he could have funded advocacy groups. Closer home, like the Tatas, he could have contributed towards the building of academic institutions or a centre for the performing arts.

Instead, Ambani bought a flat—one far bigger than the standard 2BHK. In fact, he built a castle masquerading as an apartment: an in-your-face structure that stared down at the bungalows of older captains of industry, who had earlier built their fortunes in the city—from textiles, automobiles, shipping, trade. Step-by-step, Dhirubhai Ambani had climbed over them in the city’s pecking order; now Mukesh Ambani can literally look down upon them.

And fly over them. "

Whenever I see a large car the size of my bedroom go by on the very potholed Mumbai roads, I evaluate it in terms of what part of my flat could be bought with one of it's tyres: so far I have concluded that a BMW's spare tyre can fund my bathroom given the cost per sq feet in Mumbai.

I was amused this morning to read R Sukumar's Acute Angle in Mint ( R Sukumar is the editor )

He says Mukeshbhai is paying the price for being rich. :) Reminds me of old Amitabh movies where the seth was always fabulously rich!

Whatever the case maybe. Lets face it. Altamount Road has a new point of view and once Mukesh bhai shifts residence, everyone will look up and wonder what he does in there. Atleast he will not have to bother about "in how many steps does my house end"

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