Amber is an Urdu movie released in 1978. With veteran director Nazrul Islam behind the camera and a gaggle of heavy-hitting stars such as Mohammad Ali, Nadeem and the versatile Mumtaz, Amber zinged off like a rocket, running for an incredible 85 weeks at Karachi’s Koh-i-noor Cinema.
As with many Pakistani films, it is hard to share the public’s madness for what today seems a run-of-the-mill romcom with the usual plotlines of inter-generational conflict, mistaken identities and parents struggling with drink and anger management issues. Which is not to say Amber is a complete waste of time. Nadeem once again shows his comedic skills, and Mumtaz manages to hold our attention with nary a twerk or breast boom.
Mohammad Ali, by now one of the elder statesman of Pakistani movies, plays Ali, a rich man wound tighter than a maulvi’s mouth in Ramzan. His beloved wife dies in childbirth, but Ali has little time for his son, Nadeem (Nadeem), The boy grows up to be a spendthrift playboy at university, always getting in and out of trouble with the help of his scheming best friend (Munawar Saeed).
The heart of the movie is a farcical double-cross-blackmail-deception powerplay that has Nadeem tricking Amber (Mumtaz) and her family into thinking he is a cook, which allows him to get close to Amber. The comedy is laid on thick as Ali, Amber and Nadeem grin, smack, drink and stumble their way through a series of circumstances that get more tangled than one of Nadeem’s bowls of noodles.
Robin Ghosh is charged with the soundtrack which, like the film itself, doesn’t hold up as well as many of his other scores. But the highlight, sung by Mehdi Hassan, is a desi cover of one of the most famous pop songs in the world.
In 1959, the Belgian folk legend Jacques Brel composed what he referred to as a “hymn to the cowardice of men”, Ne me quitte pas (Don’t Leave Me). The song’s doleful and slightly lethargic melody instantly caught on not just in the French-speaking world but across the globe. Versions of the song have been recorded in at least 26 languages, including Afrikaans, West Frisian, Arabic and Slovene. In English alone, 17 artists ranging from the country star Glen Campbell to the smoothest of all lounge singers Frank Sinatra have recorded If You Go Away, the Rod McKuen-penned Anglo iteration.
Ne me quitte pas is often thought of as a love song, but according to Brel, it is nothing of the sort. At the time of the composition, Brel’s girlfriend became pregnant with his son. With what he termed masculine “cowardice”, Brel refused to take any responsibility for the child. His girlfriend threw him out and the song came out of a bout of Brel’s regret and remorse.
This backstory is somewhat mirrored in Amber. The song Thehra Hain Sama Hum Tum Jahan comes at the beginning of the film, on the occasion of Ali’s wedding night. As he falls into the arms of his young bride (Deeba), he sings of eternal love and never leaving her. She begins to tear up in a sort of premonition of disaster. Several months later, she dies whilst giving birth to their son Nadeem.
Ghosh doesn’t stray too far from the original melody though, of course, the words have changed to suit a different context. The key feature of the song, besides the golden nuanced voice of Mehdi Hassan, is the lovely plaintive violin that drives the melody gently forward.
Nate Rabe’s novel, The Shah of Chicago, is out now from Speaking Tiger.
The next Industrial Revolution is here – driven by the digitalization of manufacturing processes
Technologies such as Industry 4.0, IoT, robotics and Big Data analytics are transforming the manufacturing industry in a big way.
The manufacturing industry across the world is seeing major changes, driven by globalization and increasing consumer demand. As per a report by the World Economic Forum and Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd on the future of manufacturing, the ability to innovate at a quicker pace will be the major differentiating factor in the success of companies and countries.
This is substantiated by a PWC research which shows that across industries, the most innovative companies in the manufacturing sector grew 38% (2013 - 2016), about 11% year on year, while the least innovative manufacturers posted only a 10% growth over the same period.
Along with innovation in products, the transformation of manufacturing processes will also be essential for companies to remain competitive and maintain their profitability. This is where digital technologies can act as a potential game changer.
The digitalization of the manufacturing industry involves the integration of digital technologies in manufacturing processes across the value chain. Also referred to as Industry 4.0, digitalization is poised to reshape all aspects of the manufacturing industry and is being hailed as the next Industrial Revolution. Integral to Industry 4.0 is the ‘smart factory’, where devices are inter-connected, and processes are streamlined, thus ensuring greater productivity across the value chain, from design and development, to engineering and manufacturing and finally to service and logistics.
Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, artificial intelligence and Big Data analytics are some of the key technologies powering Industry 4.0. According to a report, Industry 4.0 will prompt manufacturers globally to invest $267 billion in technologies like IoT by 2020. Investments in digitalization can lead to excellent returns. Companies that have implemented digitalization solutions have almost halved their manufacturing cycle time through more efficient use of their production lines. With a single line now able to produce more than double the number of product variants as three lines in the conventional model, end to end digitalization has led to an almost 20% jump in productivity.
Digitalization and the Indian manufacturing industry
The Make in India program aims to increase the contribution of the manufacturing industry to the country’s GDP from 16% to 25% by 2022. India’s manufacturing sector could also potentially touch $1 trillion by 2025. However, to achieve these goals and for the industry to reach its potential, it must overcome the several internal and external obstacles that impede its growth. These include competition from other Asian countries, infrastructural deficiencies and lack of skilled manpower.
There is a common sentiment across big manufacturers that India lacks the eco-system for making sophisticated components. According to FICCI’s report on the readiness of Indian manufacturing to adopt advanced manufacturing trends, only 10% of companies have adopted new technologies for manufacturing, while 80% plan to adopt the same by 2020. This indicates a significant gap between the potential and the reality of India’s manufacturing industry.
The ‘Make in India’ vision of positioning India as a global manufacturing hub requires the industry to adopt innovative technologies. Digitalization can give the Indian industry an impetus to deliver products and services that match global standards, thereby getting access to global markets.
The policy, thus far, has received a favourable response as global tech giants have either set up or are in the process of setting up hi-tech manufacturing plants in India. Siemens, for instance, is helping companies in India gain a competitive advantage by integrating industry-specific software applications that optimise performance across the entire value chain.
The Digital Enterprise is Siemens’ solution portfolio for the digitalization of industries. It comprises of powerful software and future-proof automation solutions for industries and companies of all sizes. For the discrete industries, the Digital Enterprise Suite offers software and hardware solutions to seamlessly integrate and digitalize their entire value chain – including suppliers – from product design to service, all based on one data model. The result of this is a perfect digital copy of the value chain: the digital twin. This enables companies to perform simulation, testing, and optimization in a completely virtual environment.
The process industries benefit from Integrated Engineering to Integrated Operations by utilizing a continuous data model of the entire lifecycle of a plant that helps to increase flexibility and efficiency. Both offerings can be easily customized to meet the individual requirements of each sector and company, like specific simulation software for machines or entire plants.
Siemens has identified projects across industries and plans to upgrade these industries by connecting hardware, software and data. This seamless integration of state-of-the-art digital technologies to provide sustainable growth that benefits everyone is what Siemens calls ‘Ingenuity for Life’.
Case studies for technology-led changes
An example of the implementation of digitalization solutions from Siemens can be seen in the case of pharma major Cipla Ltd’s Kurkumbh factory.
Cipla needed a robust and flexible distributed control system to dispense and manage solvents for the manufacture of its APIs (active pharmaceutical ingredients used in many medicines). As part of the project, Siemens partnered with Cipla to install the DCS-SIMATIC PCS 7 control system and migrate from batch manufacturing to continuous manufacturing. By establishing the first ever flow Chemistry based API production system in India, Siemens has helped Cipla in significantly lowering floor space, time, wastage, energy and utility costs. This has also improved safety and product quality.
In yet another example, technology provided by Siemens helped a cement plant maximise its production capacity. Wonder Cement, a greenfield project set up by RK Marbles in Rajasthan, needed an automated system to improve productivity. Siemens’ solution called CEMAT used actual plant data to make precise predictions for quality parameters which were previously manually entered by operators. As a result, production efficiency was increased and operators were also freed up to work on other critical tasks. Additionally, emissions and energy consumption were lowered – a significant achievement for a typically energy intensive cement plant.
In the case of automobile major, Mahindra & Mahindra, Siemens’ involvement involved digitalizing the whole product development system. Siemens has partnered with the manufacturer to provide a holistic solution across the entire value chain, from design and planning to engineering and execution. This includes design and software solutions for Product Lifecycle Management, Siemens Technology for Powertrain (STP) and Integrated Automation. For Powertrain, the solutions include SINUMERIK, SINAMICS, SIMOTICS and SIMATIC controls and drives, besides CNC and PLC-controlled machines linked via the Profinet interface.
The above solutions helped the company puts its entire product lifecycle on a digital platform. This has led to multi-fold benefits – better time optimization, higher productivity, improved vehicle performance and quicker response to market requirements.
Siemens is using its global expertise to guide Indian industries through their digital transformation. With the right technologies in place, India can see a significant improvement in design and engineering, cutting product development time by as much as 30%. Besides, digital technologies driven by ‘Ingenuity for Life’ can help Indian manufacturers achieve energy efficiency and ensure variety and flexibility in their product offerings while maintaining quality.
The above examples of successful implementation of digitalization are just some of the examples of ‘Ingenuity for Life’ in action. To learn more about Siemens’ push to digitalize India’s manufacturing sector, see here.
This article was produced on behalf of Siemens by the Scroll.in marketing team and not by the Scroll.in editorial staff.