More Things Indian Cricketers Don’t Need

Sadly, this is becoming a trend (see here for the previous installment in the series):

Hyundai Motor Co., a big cricket sponsor, says it will give each team member a 2011 Hyundai Verna RB.

And just in case the roads are too tough, there’s this option:

Kingfisher Airlines on Tuesday joined the host of corporates who have announced freebies worth crores of rupees to the World Cup winning Indian Cricket Team, by offering free lifetime travel on the airline.

Of course, Hyundai and Kingfisher,  private companies, can do what they want with their profits and products. But this sort of stuff reminds me of why Nehru was so skeptical of the marketplace. When you see such a skewed allocation of resources toward cricketers and the game in an economy that desperately needs more roads, schools, hospitals…but that’s for another blog post, and another blog!

Update: One more to the pile —

Amrapali, which had signed Dhoni as its brand ambassador in 2009 for four years, said the entire World Cup winning Indian cricket team will be given the villas at its luxury township ‘Amrapali Dream Valley Project’ at Noida extension.

“Dhoni was presented with an exotic grand villa covering 2,900 sq ft worth Rs 1 crore, while other team members were gifted villas worth Rs 55 lakh each, covering an area of 1,690 sq ft,” Amrapali Chairman and Managing Director Anil Kumar Sharma told reporters here.

The corporate impulse to reward Indian cricketers is the same as the political one — it gets your name in the papers, and it gets your brand attached to the hottest thing on the market right now. So perhaps it isn’t as big a misallocation as I suggested.

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