Chitralekha Group, publishers of the ‘Watch World’ magazine, and which has been associated with the watch industry for almost a decade, held India’s first ever Watch World Awards on August 25, 2010 in Delhi. The Awards honoured top watch brands from around the globe under various categories. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit was Chief Guest at the event.
The jury for the awards comprised master watchmaker Antoine Simonin, fashion designer Rohit Bal, and Michael Ferreira, among others. Commenting on the Awards, Mitrajit Bhattacharya, President and Publisher, Chitralekha Group, said, “We saw tough competition in almost all the categories. We already have plans to make the Awards even better next year.”
Bhattacharya also stated that their immediate focus of Chitralekha now was the upcoming Diamond Jubilee of the group. “We have a lot of events planned for the rest of the year, but probably the biggest that we have is the 60th year celebrations of the group. The celebrations will be across five cities, starting with Jamnagar on September 8, followed by Rajkot, Surat, Baroda and Ahmdabad. We have scheduled seminars comprising eminent speakers and personalities from various walks of life. This will be followed by cultural programmes and Gujarati plays at night.”
In addition to the celebrations, Chitralekha is coming up with a 500-page special issue to mark the occasion. Bhattacharya said that the issue would feature guest writers such as LK Advani, Kapil Sibal, Jairam Ramesh, Mukesh Ambani, Javed Akhtar, and Madhur Bhandarkar, among others. This special issue would be sponsored by two of the biggest Gujarati industry houses, Ambanis and Adanis. The grand finale of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations will be held in Mumbai on September 21 amid much fanfare.
Bhattacharya’s responsibilities stretch beyond the Chitralekha Group as he is also General Secretary of the Association of Indian Magazines (AIM). The Executive Committee, which comprises the President, Vice President, General Secretary and the past presidents, collectively takes decisions on matters concerning the Association. However the work Bhattacharya has been closely involved with is having an engagement resource for the magazine industry that AIM is creating, because they feel that the larger sample sizes of IRS do not address the issues of magazines. Their objective is to work towards getting a lot of quality data.
Bhattacharya further said, “We have worked greatly towards bringing about amendments in the PRB Act with the Information and the Broadcasting Ministry. World Magazine Congress is coming to India next year, which will be very big. We have the Indian Magazine Congress also on the cards. We get proposals for tie-ups from world bodies, and then we collectively take a call on whether or not an alliance will be mutually beneficial. I must mention that almost all the big players in the magazine industry are already members of AIM and our constant endeavour is to get more and more on board.”