Mudra Group's specialist consultancy unit Water won the Creative Lantern award for their idea to promote the cause of the 'Lighting a Billion Lives' programme. The India chapter of the International Advertising Association (IAA) hosted the creative lantern awards on Friday evening, which was presided over by an elite jury headed by Dr Rajendra K Pachauri, recipient of the Nobel Prize as chairman, IPCC and Director general of TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute)
Hosted by the IAA, the creative lantern awards had been instituted as a part of the 'Lighting a Billion Lives' programme, in an attempt to come up with creative ideas that could encourage people to look at energy conservation methods in their daily lives. This included a plan to provide 400 million Indians who have no access to electricity, with solar lamps that could help them increase their productivity.
Columnist Shobha De, actor and director Farhan Akhtar, O&M's Piyush Pandey, The Times of India's Jaideep Bose, HSBC's Naina Lal Kidwai, Aditya Birla Group's Kumar Mangalam Birla, Unilever's Nitin Paranjpe and IAA's Pradeep Guha and Raj Nayak were the other members of the elite jury that evaluated the final winners.
The role of the winning creative communication was to bring about social awareness, and to mobilize citizens and corporates to contribute to the "Lighting a Billion Lives" programme, which aimed to distribute cost-effective, rechargeable solar lanterns that could provide clean lighting to about 78 million deprived Indian households. TERI has already begun the process of working with NGOs to create the infrastructure for installing solar panels, distributing solar lanterns and managing the operation in identified villages. 113 entries were received from across the country.
The first round of shortlists were made by a panel of jury consisting of Agnello Dias, Preeti Vyas, Abhijit Avasthi, Adrian Mendonza, Bobby Pawar, Josy Paul, Sam Balsara, Rahul Welde and Gautam Rakshit.
Speaking at the ceremony, jury member Piyush Pandey made the point that after looking through the quality of entries, the jury had felt that perhaps the advertising fraternity had not taken the initiative as seriously as they could have. He pointed out that he spoke for the entire jury when he said that given the talent in the industry, he would have expected a far better turnout in the entries if agencies had given the campaign more thought and time. He urged agencies to take this initiative more seriously the next time around.
Speaking to Campaign India, Dr Rajendra Pachauri said that the advertising and marketing community was uniquely placed to promote the cause of the 'Lighting a Billion Lives' program. He added, "Look at the great deal of power they have, they have a great deal of convening power, they can reach out and effectively spread the message. They have taken this initiative very seriously, with a passion and sincerity which is remarkable. We will be building on this partnership from hereon."
(Pictured left to right: Sushmita Sen and Dr Rajendra K Pachauri give away the IAA Creative Lantern Award to Water's Ashish Mishra and Pradeep Debnath)