Force Magazine

 Lost Opportunity
 Aero India 2013 too missed the bus

For all the superlative claims like the biggest and the best, Aero India 2013 was certainly the shortest air show in the world. While some defence shows run for an entire week with at least four days dedicated to business, most air shows contend themselves with three business days. Both Aero India and DefExpo traditionally adhered to the latter format.

But at Aero India 2013, business was over on the first day itself. And probably, soon after the departure of the ministerial delegation! Families with small children started trooping in on the second day of the Show, right in the morning and by late morning it was free for all. The X-ray machines at the entry stopped working, the toilet attendants abandoned their posts, the food court regurgitated the same tripe and the air display viewing area (ADVA) was littered with empty water bottles and discarded packs of chips (see Box 4).

Either in anticipation of this, or expecting no business, senior-level executives from most participating companies fled the Show on the second day itself. Signalling that the Show was over, barricading tapes came up around the stands in the exhibition halls by mid-morning on the third day, even as the permanent simian residents of the venue started displaying their impatience by strutting around the exhibition halls or jumping on the false ceilings of exhibits.

Families and friends out on picnic on the third business day of the air show
Families and friends out on picnic on the third business day of the air show

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