The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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How to spend a crore

One fine day, you wake up to a crore, a bonanza out of the blue. What would be your impulse buy' What would be your savings plan' An opinion poll catches the young Crorepati Calcuttan in action

From buying a hill in Darjeeling to bidding for Manchester United, bringing Michael Jackson down for a show to booking an island in the Sunderbans, buying a video camera to a Versace'

If you harbour any doubts that the young Calcuttan dreams big, but with one foot planted firmly on the ground, all you have to do is ask one question: what would you do if you woke up, one fine day, to a windfall gain of Rs 1 crore'

To understand the money minds of 200 young men and women, in the age group of 15 to 20, Metro on Sunday commissioned an opinion poll on the One-Day Calcutta Crorepati.

The result of the survey, conducted by market research agency MODE in the festive first week of November, throws up a mixed bag of options, a plethora of piquant purchase plans and an entire spectrum of savings strategies.

But before dividing the booty between buying and saving decisions, comes the moment of reckoning. Over 65 per cent of respondents said 'screaming in disbelief' would be their first reaction after hitting a jackpot of Rs 1 crore.

Once the vocal chords are weary, it's time to weave dreams. A whopping 83 per cent of respondents said the surprise sum would trigger a spending spree.

And a shopping basket way beyond reality reach can suddenly be viewed through the binoculars of bounty.

Now, let's pause at what the young gang aspires to acquire. The survey reveals that when it comes to spending, going international ' be it rack raid or travel plans ' is the modern mantra.

Topping the list of items (76 per cent) on which they would like to splurge are luxury cars and the preference is clearly for the Porsche and the Merc (what's a Maruti, man')

Once in the driving seat, what's destination next for GeneratioNext' A world tour would be just fine (for 73 per cent of respondents), with long hours spent at swanky malls to shop till the power lasts in the purse (71 per cent vote for upper crust designer dresses).

World tour over, 64 per cent of respondents would go for makaan after kapda, with modern apartments a must. Tech talk loses out to the good life with computers, video cameras and DVD players slipping down the purchase pole.

The opinion poll also traced some out-of-the box dreams spun by the likes of Sanchita of Swinhoe Street, Md Hussain of Entally, Monali of Jodhpur Park and Alipi of Santoshpur.

Their dream buys: a hill in Darjeeling, a stake in Manchester United (the richest football club in the world), an island in the Sunderbans and a live show on home turf by the ultimate modern entertainer, Michael Jackson.

The decision on what to buy done, let's work out the budget and allocate funds under various heads.

The respondents were also asked to mention their planned outlays on spending, saving and charity. The result, after averaging the individual numbers, is music to the banking and finance industry's ears with respondents trading off today's fun with a safety net for tomorrow.

In a clear signal that the dream run is on its last lap, come the safe deposits. Out of the Rs 1 crore kitty, around Rs 50 lakh would end up being saved, Rs 33 lakh would be spent and around 15 per cent would be earmarked for charitable institutions like the Missionaries of Charity and the Ramakrishna Mission.

Fantasy spend, political correctness and social commitment apart, there are a host of middle-path investments and safe savings routes waiting to be walked.

Even in an easy money scenario, the preference to play it like Rahul Dravid rather than Virender Sehwag is clear. Despite the bull run at the bourses and the spiralling real estate prices, around 84 per cent of the respondents prefer fixed deposits over investments in the stock market and in property deals.

With safety and security at the top of the saving mind, it's time to show dreams the door and get real. Eighty per cent of respondents have never, repeat never, tried their luck at lotteries, in the belief that no pot of gold lies at the end of the reality rainbow.

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