Reliance Industries use of SMS makes them the PR winners this week

Good PR

Reliance Industries uses SMS to counter allegations of alleged raising of gas prices

According to the Economic TimesReliance Industries is using SMS to reach out to people to fight allegations of fixing gas prices at a higher rate.

This move follows allegations by the Aam Aadmi Party and Arvind Kejriwal that Reliance colluded with Petroleum minister Veerappa Moily to raise gas prices.

The SMS contains links to three documents released by ‘Team Reliance’, namely "In the court of people", "KG gas — the flame of truth" and "Why KG gas matters to you". 

According to the Economic Times, the same documents were also released last week to journalists as well, in response to the allegations by Arvind Kejriwal and Prashant Bhushan.

This is the first comprehensive attempt by Reliance since the controversy broke out to fight the allegations against it and get their point of view on record – By not having Mukesh Ambani speak out directly, but doing it through ‘Team Reliance’. Reliance has tried not to get into a confrontation with Kejriwal and yet present the facts.

The communication challenge that Reliance faces is that Kejriwal has used the emotive route to present allegations around a very complex issue – a route that will strike a chord with people. This approach is quite similar to what a Greenpeace would do on issues like BT Cotton or a PETA against cosmetic companies. The picture of people vs. an “exploitative corporation” is always popular and gains greater traction with people – these perceptions are not easy to shake.

While the SMS offers Reliance an opportunity to ensure its share of voice is on record on the gas pricing issue, Reliance has its work cut out to keep ensuring its side is heard.

Widows of Vrindavan celebrate Holi with a little help from Sulabh International

A 1000 widows from Vrindavan applied Holi colours on each other and with the splash of gulal broke free of century’s old taboo about widows and colour. These widows played Holi with colours and gulal at Meera Sahabhagini Ashram in Vrindavan at a function organised by Sulabh International.

Source: Indian Express

This is a great initiative by Sulabh to rehabilitate the state of widows in India and help them break through social stigma. Last year Sulabh organised a Holi with flowers for these women, this year all stigmas were broken with the use of actual colour.

This one gets big thumbs up from me.

First kisses video sell Wren Clothes

A video showing couples at that sweet and awkward moment of a first kiss has gone viral:

The video posted last week has crossed 28 million views in its first few days of uploading. It turns out that it’s a smart communications stunt by clothing company Wren. All the couples are wearing clothes by Wren!

Clearly in today’s social media led world just plain modelling wouldn’t do, you need an angle and this one is very creative for the audience it targets.

I am not sure such a video would work in India though. I can already see the right wing chaps hefting their lathis at the thought! Pity though.

Bad PR

BJP candidates’ row out in the open and the ides of March hits the BJP!

While Arvind Kejriwal’s continued anti media tirade has got him plenty of criticism, other parties are too suffering from a case of bad PR over selection of candidates. BJP had a particularly bad week. Its senior party leader, LK Advani, is in a sulk about the lack of support from the BJP cadre from the seat he wants and has represented – Gandhinagar had wanted to shift to Bhopal.

This would have sent out yet another signal about the troubled relationship between Modi and Advani. Before the Advani-Gandhinagar tussle, BJP’s Bollywood candidate from Kirron Kher was greeted with black flags and eggs from BJP party workers in Chandigarh. And its official spokesperson Vijay Sonkar Shastri had to be taken away from the press briefing room after he talked about unfair ticket allocation and said that he wanted to contest from Machhlishahar seat in UP.

According to the Times of Indiadissent was obvious in “UP Deoria, Allahabad, Aligarh, Ayodhya, Bijnour, Jaunpur and Ghaziabad on Sunday during which party workers burned the effigies of Rajnath Singh and Narendra Modi.”

Beware the ides of March!

Have you seen any great or even bad PR?

Write to Paarul Chand at or tweet @PaarulC or @PRmomentIndia throughout the week and we’ll happily credit you for your trouble.

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