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Brand Bewakoof rings success in Jharkhand town

Last updated: 05 December, 2010
Giridih (Jharkhand), Dec 5 (IANS) 11:52 IST

What's in a name? Had legendary playwright Shakespeare posed this question in Jharkhand's Giridih town, he would have got a collective reply - ''everything''. Because not only has the word 'bewakoof' (stupid) made many a fortune here, it also commands an unflinching loyalty.

Within 20 metres of Court Road there are six Bewakoof hotels and they have flourished long before Aamir Khan-starrer "3 Idiots" became a commercial success and the word idiot was owned up with genuine affection. No hotel does bigger business than the Bewakoof brand here, irrespective of the economic forces at work.

Vouching for this fact is Sunil Agrawal, whose fortunes changed with a change in the hotel name.

"We had a hotel by the name of Vaishnav, but it was not doing well. But ever since we set up another hotel and named it Bewakoof Badshah, it has been doing great business," Agrawal told IANS.

What's in a name? Had legendary playwright Shakespeare posed this question in Jharkhand's Giridih town, he would have got a collective reply - ''everything''. Because not only has the word 'bewakoof' (stupid) made many a fortune here, it also commands an unflinching loyalty.

Bewakoof Badshah is the latest addition to the league Bewakoof hotels. The others include Shri Bewakoof, Maha Bewakoof, Bewakoof No.1, Mahan Bewakoof -- all of them very much inspired by the names of Bollywood blockbusters.

So popular is the success story of bewakoof hotels that two more namesake hotels have been set up in Isri and Rajdhanwar - the two rural pockets of Giridih.

The history of bewakoof hotels dates back to 1971. Birbal Prasad, the proud owner of the oldest such hotel, tells how the hotel got this name.

"When my uncle Gopi Ram set up an eatery, it failed to do much business. We were in deep financial crisis. To make the hotel run, we started giving discount on the billed amount. Soon customers began calling us bewakoof, but at the same time they kept coming back to us," Prasad recounted to IANS.

"They started addressing our hotel as bewakoof hotel. And thus, when we shifted our hotel to its present location, we named it as Bewakoof Hotel," he says, swelling with pride.

The second hotel of the Bewakoof series came up in 1993. It was opened by Kiran Bhadani, the nephew of Gopi Ram. Bhadani used to run the Bewakoof Hotel with his uncle. However, due some differences, Bhadani parted ways with his uncle and set up Shri Bewakoof.

"After running that hotel with my uncle, I understood the fact that nothing sells like the Bewakoof brand here; so I copied the name. My uncle was not happy, but he could not stop me," quips Bhadani.

And from then on, various individuals at different points of time set up hotels and chose to name them that way.

And the customers too are a happy lot, the name keeps them amused and the food keeps them full."There are several hotels to lunch at. But we get good quality of food at reasonable rates in Bewakoof hotels. We only eat there," said Trivuwan Kumar, a resident of Tisri block in Giridih.

Call it a coincidence or brand value, but whosoever has adopted the name has raked in profit."We have never been ashamed of naming our hotel the way it is. As for some reason, it gives us good revenue," Bhadani says.

Thanks to the brand recall of these hotels, the non-bewakoof hotels are getting some good competition."Because of bewakoof hotels, we are getting tough, healthy competition. But as our hotels are old too, so we have our own reputation", said Aniruddh Prasad Sinha, owner of Sinha Hotel.

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