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Father-son duo, Ashish and Abhinay Bhasin of DAN, bond over chess

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Father-son duo, Ashish and Abhinay Bhasin of DAN, bond over chess

Talk about Father’s Day and (almost) every father will laugh it off as a recent phenomenon. But a day to celebrate their contribution, role and values they have inculcated in us can never be overrated.

Hence, to celebrate this paternal bond, Lokmat- New No 1 in Pune with exchange4media present #No1Dad, a five-day series where we get a glimpse into the other side of media veterans, this time from their children’s eyes. We start with Ashish Bhasin, ‎Chairman & CEO South Asia Dentsu Aegis Network - ‎Aegis Group plc, and his son Abhinay, Associate Director Data Sciences, DAN. The father-son duo talk about their exclusive trips, discussions on the industry and how they even at the game of chess. Excerpts:

Bonding over chess

With both father and son working in the same agency one might assume them to meet each other often. Unfortunately their different reporting lines and hectic schedules don’t allow them that luxury. However Abhinay shared that on weekends the duo indulge in a game of chess and sometimes, squash. Senior Bhasin revealed the scorecard, “I take a lot of pleasure in defeating him in chess, which we enjoy over weekends. We have a close competition going on. On the whole we are evenly matched though I would like to believe that earlier he had a (bit of an) edge over me. These days I have that over him. When it comes to squash I am very feeble, most amateur sports player you will ever see.” Besides that there’s father-son banter over dinner ‘on hot topics in the industry’ as shared by Abhinay.

Fondest memories

For Abhinay, one of his fondest memories was their trip to Singapore. He added, “We try to make this an annual affair every since I passed out from school where on one long weekend we (just the two of us) would go to Singapore and enjoy our time together, be it during the days at Sentosa, or walking down Orchard Street or even enjoying a lively dinner at Clarke Quay.”

When back home, Ashish Bhasin mentioned that they like going to their holiday home in Lonavala. He added, “Whenever we get an opportunity both of us go there.”

Welcome to the ad world

For Abhinay joining the ad world came naturally because of his exposure to the industry from a young age. He explained, “I was exposed to the ad-world at a very young age through my interactions with my father’s colleagues when I used to go to pick him up from work, or through the family events held by Lintas.” Senior Bhasin maintained that he has never interfered in Abhinay’s professional life or influenced him into joining the ad world. But he did observe his son's inclination towards it. He said “Even when he was in school and college he would love to go to Goa Fest as a student delegate.”

As a result, after post graduation in Economics from the University of Warwick in the UK, his understanding on the field became clearer. He said, “My affinity towards gaining a better understanding of the consumer’s mindset further solidified and thus resulted in my desire to join the advertising profession. When I approached my parents with this choice they were more than supportive.”

Ashish Bhasin added, “I always believe that children have to take their own decision and decide their own destiny.”

Mentor and best friend

Abhinay treats his father as his best friend and not just ‘professional mentor.’ 'Devoted' is how he describes the media veteran. He added, “He is very firm, real in his feedback and very re-assuring in his advice. His counsel is what I value and cherish most whenever I’ve needed to choose my line of exposure in the industry as well as shaping me into being a well-rounded professional."

Ashish Bhasin feels somewhat shy of taking credit and even joked as he said, “I think he doesn’t find me competent enough to advice him in his line of work of data science. He discusses it with his colleagues and boss.” But you can notice a subtle hint of pride in his voice when he said, “He is fairly independent and takes his own decision. He is a man of his own thinking. But if he needs any advice from me he knows I am always there.”

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